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Would you?

Old 04-28-20, 12:22 AM
  #1  
RocHed11
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Would you?

As I noted in some other posts, I'm fairly new to back to biking-Jan 2020, I ride a trek DS2 stock Hybrid, Up in my attic I have a 1975 Raleigh Gran Prix that hasn't been ridden nor serviced for 25+ years, Saddle is pretty much deteriorated, I sure the brake pads have weathered beyond use. The tires were still hard until I realized the rubber was practically petrified. Anyone think it is salvageable for a reasonable cost? Thanks in advance!!

T
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Old 04-28-20, 12:31 AM
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As long as the frame is ok it‘s salvagable and will pretty
sure outlast that other bike you have.

In the classic and vintage forum you‘ll get all the info you need.
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Old 04-28-20, 06:22 AM
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Moe Zhoost
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I have a number of bikes that old or older and some are ridden regularly. It's really up to you to decide on the Gran Prix. Parts won't set you back much, but if you pay somebody for labor it could get pricey. You'll need new tires, brake pads, and cables plus new saddle and bar wrap, maybe. It will be a bit of work to disassemble, clean, and re-lubricate. If you have a bike co-op in your area, you will have an excellent resource for parts, tools, and advice.

Obviously you've kept it for some reason, right? Now's the time to move the bike back into daylight and give it some love.
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Old 04-28-20, 06:27 AM
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Attics can be incredibly hard on things. The metal parts should be fine, but anything rubber or plastic will likely have to be replaced. Grips, cable housing, tires, rim strips, seat. Some BBs have plastic parts. Some shifters do as well. Get it down and evaluate it.
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Old 04-28-20, 07:12 AM
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Resurrecting an old bike like that would be fun!
Probably a great ride too. Steel is so under rated.
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Old 04-28-20, 10:15 AM
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After you fix it up, what do you plan to do with it?

It's been sitting for 25+ years. Tires, tubes, brake pads, brake and shift cables, new chain, new freewheel, new saddle. Overhaul 8 bearings.clean and lube derailleurs and brakes. Cosmetics.

It was a lowish end carbon steel frame to begin with so little, if any collector value. This had better be a labor of love because, economically, it's not going to cost out very well.
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Old 04-28-20, 10:23 AM
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I say go for it if frame is good shape like others have said
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Old 04-28-20, 10:59 AM
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I'd sell it for $50 (i.e., let it be someone else's expensive headache) or donate it to a bike co-op.

The comment earlier in the thread saying that the steel Raleigh would outlast the Trek hybrid reminds me of something a car mechanic said to me decades ago: "People with Volvos say they buy them because they're so reliable. What they don't realize is that they're reliable only because they're willing to spend whatever it takes to keep them running."
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Old 04-28-20, 12:04 PM
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You can probably buy a bike made out of Reynolds 531 or Tange #1 or #2 or Ishiwata 022 or 019 for the cost of fixing up the Grand Prix, although you might have to put a little money into a new purchase. Any of those steels should give you a better ride. Depending on the year it was manufactured, your GP may have steel wheels, and I think you'd need to get new, wheels with aluminum rims if you want to stop in wet weather. That could be a big expense.

Still, on one ride a couple of years ago, a guy on an early '70s GP passed me and most of the other people who passed me (and whom I could still see on the road ahead) as if we were standing still. But ... if you ride a bike made of high-end steel, I don't think you'll be sorry.
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Old 04-28-20, 12:21 PM
  #10  
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Most of the metal parts; frame, shifters wheels, etc. should be good to go with a good cleaning and re-lubrication or greasing. Even a frozen stiff chain can be rehabilitated by a spending a couple day’s soak in ATF.

You already know that you’re going to have to replace all the ‘soft’ parts just to make it rideable. At minimum, you’re looking at $75-$100 fwiw.

Depending on where and how you shop:

$40-50 for tires
$10 for tubes
$5-$10 brake pads
$5-15 for bar tape
$10-$15 saddle

You’ll really have to scout the clearance rack and not be too picky to get the best prices.
If your LBS has a take-off bin, you can get a decent saddle for almost nothing.

New cables and chains are nice, too, especially if the old ones aren’t working, but it’ll push the cost up a little more:
There’s a $10 Bell-branded cable kit at WMart, that’s good for older bikes like this.
The KMC Z51 chain is my go-to for ‘ten-speed’ era bikes. I got a couple of them from my co-op for $8 each

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Old 04-28-20, 12:38 PM
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Only if you think you are going to like the end product, and it fits. I fixed up my Dad's Paramount, though it's two sizes too big for me (it was at least one size too big for him too). And it's nice but it's not something I feel like riding very often, it only fits in the drops and tops. Grand Prix was... not a Paramount
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Old 04-28-20, 05:36 PM
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It really depends on what you consider to be a reasonable cost.

As others have stated, you'll most likely need new tires, tube and rim tape (if the existing rim tape is rubber) plus new brake pads. The saddle isn't really an issue because you might have wanted to replace it anyway if it was in good condition but didn't suit you. Your handlebar tape might be okay too. I use Renfrew brand hockey tape for my vintage bikes because that tape is very durable and looks a lot like the old Tesla cloth bar tape.

Cables for the brakes might be needed if the ones on the bike are badly deteriorated. Otherwise I'd just squirt in some good oil into the cable housing and work the brakes a bit. If you do that with the brake pads off you'll get a lot more cable exposed when you pull the cable and that'll help the oil penetrate further into the housing length.

Price out what it'll cost you for tires, tubes et cetera and then see if that price fits within your idea of reasonable. Also, this will only be relatively inexpensive if you can do all the work yourself. Your bottom bracket and wheels will need to be cleaned out and new grease put in as the old grease is probably hardened.

If you're doing this in order to sell the bike, then no, it's most likely not a reasonable price as you'd be hard pressed to recover the money let alone your time.

Cheers
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Old 04-28-20, 05:54 PM
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Thank you all for your answers. I'll be 64 this summer- I'm pretty sure both bikes will out last Me. Thanks again for all the good info!!!

T
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Old 04-28-20, 06:12 PM
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Rebuild

I went through a similar issue deciding if I should rebuild my 1979 Holdsworth Special.
I built it when I was just 16 and it has many happy memories associated with it in the UK.
I even dragged it with me across the Atlantic with me in 1989.

It was for these reasons I went ahead with a rebuild last year. Parts were not easy to come by. Technology has changed, a lot. Even questions like what square taper I had on the Bottom Bracket were a stumper.
If you're attached to the bike, it may be worth taking on the project. Else, don't get sucked in.

All the best

Barry
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Old 04-28-20, 08:13 PM
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FWIW:
The Ultimate (hopefully) Raleigh Grand Prix thread.
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Old 04-28-20, 09:21 PM
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RocHed11
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Originally Posted by BobbyG View Post

BobbyG-Nice, TYVM!!
T
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Old 04-28-20, 10:08 PM
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+1 vintage forum. That bike was a really good bike back in the day and worth rebuilding.
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Old 04-28-20, 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by RocHed11 View Post
As I noted in some other posts, I'm fairly new to back to biking-Jan 2020, I ride a trek DS2 stock Hybrid, Up in my attic I have a 1975 Raleigh Gran Prix that hasn't been ridden nor serviced for 25+ years, Saddle is pretty much deteriorated, I sure the brake pads have weathered beyond use. The tires were still hard until I realized the rubber was practically petrified. Anyone think it is salvageable for a reasonable cost? Thanks in advance!!

T
I've restored several 1970's Grand Prix's and I have another 5 or 6 waiting to be worked on. They are great bikes for commuting and joy-riding. You don't have to invest much if you just want to get it up and running.

Tires, tubes, rim tape, brake pads will set you back less than $100.00. Replacing the steel rims with aluminum would be the next "upgrade". I always re-use the original Normandy hubs, you can even re-use the spokes and nipples if you remove them carefully and stick with 27" rims. The rims I would suggest are Sun CR18. You can get a pair of them for about $60 or $70.
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Old 04-29-20, 05:59 AM
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Which color is it? If red, maybe, If any of the other three colors, no. But be aware of the down side and the costs. Others have given you lists of costs, but I didn't see cables mentioned. A good cable set will set you back $25 if you shop wisely. Less if you buy in bulk quantities.

The only reason why I would rebuild this bike is that the frame has an attractive appearance. Especially the red. That's why.

The two reasons why I wouldn't touch a Raleigh Grand Prix from 1975: steel rims and cottered crank. The rims won't help with good brake performance. The rust will clean up okay. The cranks require nearly forgotten tools, parts and techniques to remove and re-install. Not impossible, and many on the C&V sub forum enjoy having this type of vintage crank on truly collectible vintage bikes.

So, if I were to take on a grand prix, I would: replace the wheelset (or re-lace the hubs with aluminum rims as others suggested) and remove and replace the crank. Just starting out, you won't have access to these things, so would have to pay. Worth it? I don't think so. Ride what you have and donate the Raleigh to a coop. Take the deduction.
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Old 04-29-20, 11:16 AM
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RocHed11
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Originally Posted by Phil_gretz View Post
Which color is it? If red, maybe
Yes, its red. All this would not be out of need, it's just out of curiosity on my part.
T
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Old 04-29-20, 11:50 AM
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here's one by big chainring that's mostly original, including the original Nervar crank (wheels have been upgraded)...... and it's red....

My favorite bike...Raleigh Grand Prix


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Old 04-29-20, 12:40 PM
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Just make sure the seat and handlebars can be moved before you do anything. Tubes tires chain and pads and you should be good.
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Old 04-29-20, 10:57 PM
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RocHed11
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Originally Posted by Oneder View Post
Just make sure the seat and handlebars can be moved before you do anything. Tubes tires chain and pads and you should be good.
Rodger at that!! Handlebars I could adjust to--sitting on a post-not so much!!! LOL
T
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