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Who's been cycling the longest and what was your first road bike?

Fifty Plus (50+) Share the victories, challenges, successes and special concerns of bicyclists 50 and older. Especially useful for those entering or reentering bicycling.

Who's been cycling the longest and what was your first road bike?

Old 07-17-21, 08:37 AM
Old enough, hmmm?
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Originally Posted by Lazyass View Post
For years I've been trying to remember what my first real kids bike was. It was a hand me down from my older cousin and all I could recall was it was orange and looked like a Stingray and the bike that got me into BMX. It was stolen out of my garage and I got a new '77 Schwinn Scrambler to replace it.
That was a lot handier than my first bike, it looked like this

When I "inherited" it, sometime around 1953 all the satchels were gone; since I didn't like the colour I painted it red.... not quite "vintage". At least one of my uncles served in the Swiss Army bicycle units.

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Old 07-22-21, 10:56 AM
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I started saving my grass cutting money because the cool kid across the street was was racing his Centurion in Greenbelt Park Md. I was 13 in 1975 when I was able to afford my first road bike,a Kobe Capri for $148 and no money left over for accessories.

I have since converted it to upright bars because it is too small for me now. Thanks to my brother for storing it in his attic for 20 years after I had moved on to bigger and better rides it found another life as a bike I use to ride to the post office.

So 46 years on drop bars won't win it, hopefully I can do at least another 15-20 to at least be competitive with some of these guys.

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Old 07-22-21, 03:14 PM
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If you count the trike I got when I was 3, I have been cycling almost 80 years. BTW for the most part I am back on a trike, a tadpole trike.
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Old 07-22-21, 08:11 PM
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I bought my first road bike about 1975 at 15 years old, a Raleigh Record that I believe cost around $130. Compared to my buddies Varsity it was a featherweight as you can clearly see. But then so was I! (still am too)

The shop gave me $65 for my mint condition Schwinn Stingray with the 5 speed Stik shift as trade in. A couple years later I got a job there.

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Old 07-22-21, 08:55 PM
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I'm the short pudgy one on the right.

No doubt the stingray was my next bike.

After that was a green 24" 5-speed Gitane "road bike". I'm still hunting for the photo.
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Old 07-24-21, 09:13 AM
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My first 10-speed was acquired after the frame of my old three-speed rusted through and broke. Yeah, I rode it year 'round - even in Cleveland winters.

Anyway, my first was a brand new '74 Fuji all-steel Special Tourer with the money I earned cutting lawns in the far-west Cleveland suburbs...

Pic from internet - not my bike, but it was an orange 23"-frame like this one...
'75 Fuji S-10S bought new, 52k+ miles and still going!
'84 Univega Gran Tourismo
'84 Univega Viva Sport
'86 Miyata 710
'90 Schwinn Woodlands
Unknown brand MTB of questionable lineage aka 'Mutt Trail Bike'
Plus or minus a few others from time-to-time

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Old 07-24-21, 04:02 PM
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My first bike was a Schwinn Hornet that I inherited from my older brother that got a Rayleigh "English Racer" three speed.

My next bike was a Peugeot I bought in the late 1970's.

Total mistake to buy a French milled machine.
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Old 07-25-21, 07:49 PM
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Im 71, been riding seriously since 1965. My first bike was a modified Raleigh Rec ord, Full Campag groupset. Road the route of the 1967 Tour de France, did all the climbs at least twice. I have a garage full of bikes but love my latest purchase, Specialized Sirrus 6.0. its kinda the complete bike. I plan on ridint the Pacific Coast highway next year from Vancouver BC to San Diego, about the last ride on my bucket list. Will do it on my Surley Disc Trucker I think.
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Old 07-26-21, 02:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Kobe View Post
I started saving my grass cutting money because the cool kid across the street was was racing his Centurion in Greenbelt Park Md.
That got me to thinking. My first job was a paper route when I was in the 6th grade in '80. In the 7th grade I started working at the dollar movie theater. I've got a paycheck literally every month since I was 12 years old.

I don't see kids with jobs today, not even high schoolers. Fast food used to be mostly high schoolers employed except during school hours but I only see adults now. Same with stores in malls. Anyone else notice that?
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Old 07-26-21, 05:25 AM
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I have 3 kids in their late teens and early 20's that are in High School or College. My daughters work in food service and my son has his own landscaping business(and of course makes the most money). Most of their friends work either fast food, Doordash or as cashiers. pretty much all of them work.

I think what you are seeing is that there is just so much more fast food or retail establishments than we were growing up. The only fast food I had within 5 miles of my house growing up were McDonald's and Burger King. I now have at least a dozen, but my kids High School is about the size of mine growing up. I am sure there is also a lot more retail within 5 miles than there was. It's just a lot more low paying jobs available.

On topic, none of my kids own a road bike and probably never will. They are fine with their hybrids.
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Old 07-28-21, 07:17 PM
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My first road bike was a Peugeot UO-10 in the late 60s. It had a plastic Simplex derailleur, Mavic center pull brakes, and those ridged rims that didn't stop at all in the rain. It didn't have suicide levers though, those came on later models. I remember that the stem broke and the derailleur of course broke. It was eventually stolen with the lock cut.
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Old 08-07-21, 12:08 PM
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Originally Posted by davester View Post
Sure. My 1974 Cinelli is set up with a 32-24-20-16-13 freewheel with 47-42 chainrings. As you can see from this gear chart, that is a perfect half-step: https://ritzelrechner.de/?GR=DERS&KB...&DV=gearInches
Note that when I picked it up it was running a very different half-step (28-14 and 52-47) but I needed lower gears for the hills around here.
I'm probably too young to have ever seen half-step spec'd on a new bike. I started cycling in 1984. But in 1983, my brother bought a Trek 520 (entry level touring) and it came with half-step plus granny. I think the chainrings are 50-45-30.
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Old 08-07-21, 12:53 PM
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I bought my first road bike after I graduated college and started working full-time. It was a 1984 Team Fuji. I think "Team" is a name Fuji has used for different level bikes, but that year it was on their entry level road bike. It had quad-butted cro-mo steel for the main tubes and front forks (9658 was the designation which were the 4 thicknesses in tenths of a millimeter), and Fuji Valite stays. A had a mix of components, Suntour shifters, derailers, and freewheel, Sugino cranks, Dia Compe brakes, Sunshine hubs, UKAI rims, and SR stem, bars, and seatpost.

The oldest bike that I still ride is the Vitus 979 Duralinox aluminum I bought in 1986. Mostly original equipment. I've replaced the brake levers, put some clipless pedals on it, and swapped the cranks from a different bike (I prefer the 175mm cranks on the road bike and the 170mm on the triathlon bike), but the chainrings are from the original crank. The freewheel body is original and a couple of the lesser used cogs are, too (13 and 14). I get comments almost every club ride and almost everyone thinks it is titanium.

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Old 08-28-21, 08:22 AM
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Here it is. Schwinn Collegiate circa 1968 or '69.

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Old 08-29-21, 10:24 AM
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No point in me showing my bike when there are bicycles from the 1960s already posted.
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Old 08-29-21, 04:44 PM
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I have been riding a long time. That is my mother and I was about two? My first real bike was a hand-me-down from an older friend. It was what we called back then an "English Bike" that had a three-speed hub that did not work and longhorn handlebars that was way too big for me. That was in 1958-59 and I rode it until I took it apart and did not know how to put it back together about a year later. Got a drop-bar Columbia when I got out of the Air Force in 72 and rode that for years.until I blew out a disc and had to stop. Left it behind when I retired and moved to NC and have been kicking myself for being that stupid. Now I ride a Gravel bike and a Hybrid. Thinking of getting a touring/endurance bike and selling the gravel but who knows.
Be safe all.
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Old 09-01-21, 09:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Deal4Fuji View Post
I'm not in the running, but since I just made some pics after cleaning up my 1st bike I'm joining in. I fully expected to get a Schwinn Varsity as my 1st bike-store bike in the early 80's, but the bike shop salesman made me aware of Japanese bikes that sold for about the same, were 10 lbs lighter, and the big sales feature - was made in a taller frame than the Schwinn's. I bought an 27" '82 Fuji Supreme and I still have it and the paperwork. I wish I had reached out to more cyclists back then, but basically I rode for transportation and solo recreational rides. I gradually got out of cycling as busy work-life, golfing, and daughters playing travel sports took up my weekends. After becoming empty nesters I got back in a big way in 2014 and found how much fun it is to share the riding experience both with family and a supportive local group. I still always wanted an old school Schwinn from having Schwinn-envy growing up, and found a great deal on a '75 Continental that I ride often.

My first 10 speed was a Schwinn Continental that I bought at Cannady's Sports Center on Wrightsville Ave. in Wilmington in the Spring of 1974. I still have it, and I still ride it!
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Old 09-06-21, 11:49 AM
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In 1955 my Mom won a contest at Sears and got me a JC Higgins which I crashed into our mailbox on the first ride of 30'. Then in 1971 using my first GI Bill check I bought a 1971 Peugeot UO-8. Been in love with real road bikes ever since. Thought about getting another UO-8 but it just would not be the same.
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Old 09-07-21, 09:02 AM
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So may years ago! I think my first bike ride was in 1956/7. I was not in grade school yet. I went down a gravel driveway and crashed at the bottom. My first bike was Murry, Don't recall the model. It was black and white and chrome with a tank housing a horn. Took it apart and rebuilt many times. Stolen at a hospital where my mother worked. I would guess that was in 1958;9 time frame. English racers followed with a 5 speed derailleur bike in 1963-4 and a Bridgstone 10 speed after that.
What I have today is listed on the left.
Bikes don't stand alone. They are two tired.
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Old 09-07-21, 09:16 AM
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I vaguely remember the first time I road a 2 wheeler - I was ~3 and a neighborhood kid had left his bike in our yard and I rode it back to his house. That would have been, I think, 1978. Cycling has been core to my identity as long as I can remember.

I got my first road bike c. 1987. It was a red Sekine MR200, which was stolen from outside a video arcade, replaced by a slightly larger Sekine MR200 in green. I did my first long rides and races on that bike.
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