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Custom Fat Chance bike

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Custom Fat Chance bike

Old 09-29-21, 03:56 PM
  #1  
Merrimac
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Custom Fat Chance bike

My neighbor in Northeastern Massachusetts bought this sweet custom bike from Chris Chance in Cambridge, around 1980. It is still in mint condition.


Here is my neighbor with the bike. It weighs 30 pounds.


Custom Fat Chance build made by Chris Chance in Cambridge, MA, circa 1980.





Fat Chance


The Fork.



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Old 09-29-21, 04:10 PM
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BobbyG
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Sweet!
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Old 09-29-21, 04:15 PM
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WOW -- that's a classic in the truest sense of the word!

(The rear der cable ferrule needs attention @ the chainstay.)
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Old 09-29-21, 04:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Merrimac View Post
My neighbor in Northeastern Massachusetts bought this sweet custom bike from Chris Chance in Cambridge, around 1980. It is still in mint condition.

A beautiful bike! Classic TA triple crankset. The geometry looks slack. A comfort bike. Chris Chance was part of the Boston bike scene. In 1980, I bought a frame off the wall at Laughing Alley Cycles in Alston (a Boston neighborhood) and they sent me to Chris's place to have its alignment checked. The frame was a Tanguy (pronounced tongEE), built by Ron Horowitz. I loaded the frame with racks and panniers and rode it from sea to shining sea. My frame's fork had a lot of trail, as does the one in your picture.

Later I bought a frame from Peter Mooney, one of the other Boston bike boomers. I think Peter had worked with Rob H. I wonder if Chris worked with Rob too. I'm still riding the Mooney frame.
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Old 09-30-21, 01:31 AM
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Damn, even the fork blades are 531
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Old 09-30-21, 02:24 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolla View Post
WOW -- that's a classic in the truest sense of the word!

(The rear der cable ferrule needs attention @ the chainstay.)
That's the first thing I noticed too. Just needs the outer popping back into place. Really nice bike. Almost like a vintage "gravel" bike with the high volume tyres.
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Old 09-30-21, 04:35 AM
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Wow! Looks like your neighbour know how to spec his bikes very well! That bike would be a unique gem to own.
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Old 09-30-21, 05:19 AM
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chaadster
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Yeah, that’s supercool!

I ordered a Yo Eddy! from Fat Chance in ‘93, and built it up into a gorgeous machine. It was sublime at high speed, and irresistible in it’s burgundy metallic flake paint and custom polished and gold anodized kit (rims, seatpost, bars and crank); too irresistible, as it was stolen within months. Thieves ran into the back of the restaurant where I worked and snatched it from inside. Brazen. It was a great ride while I had it, and had Chris’ signature written on the NDS chainstay.
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Old 09-30-21, 05:31 AM
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Beyond cool! Snap it up when he ages out of cycling.
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Old 09-30-21, 09:40 AM
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Way cool. With the Deore deer head long-cage/triple derailleurs to boot!
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Old 09-30-21, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by chaadster View Post
Yeah, that’s supercool!

I ordered a Yo Eddy! from Fat Chance in ‘93, and built it up into a gorgeous machine. It was sublime at high speed, and irresistible in it’s burgundy metallic flake paint and custom polished and gold anodized kit (rims, seatpost, bars and crank); too irresistible, as it was stolen within months. Thieves ran into the back of the restaurant where I worked and snatched it from inside. Brazen. It was a great ride while I had it, and had Chris’ signature written on the NDS chainstay.
That's awful!
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Old 09-30-21, 10:44 AM
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Is that an example of ‘excessive’ fillet brazing at the headtube joins of top and down tube?

Not sure I have seen that on a 1980 steelie.
edit: maybe I just need coffee to wake up my eyes.
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Old 09-30-21, 07:48 PM
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This would definitely be appreciated in the classic and vintage forum. Lots of guys with an unhealthy love of early mountain bikes, and American custom builders, and 531.
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Old 09-30-21, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Flatforkcrown View Post
This would definitely be appreciated in the classic and vintage forum. Lots of guys with an unhealthy love of early mountain bikes, and American custom builders, and 531.
At what level does "love of early mountain bikes, and American custom builders, and 531" become unhealthy?

I mean, unless one is forgoing life-saving medical care. Or beer.

--Shannon

PS: If this place had a "bike of the year" contest, which it totally should, this would be that bicycle. When the only things wrong with an all-original 41 year old one-owner bike from a legendary builder are... a grease stain on the head tube and the rear derailleur housing popped out of it's ferrule... Damn.
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Old 10-01-21, 06:47 AM
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Originally Posted by ShannonM View Post
At what level does "love of early mountain bikes, and American custom builders, and 531" become unhealthy?

I mean, unless one is forgoing life-saving medical care. Or beer.

--Shannon

PS: If this place had a "bike of the year" contest, which it totally should, this would be that bicycle. When the only things wrong with an all-original 41 year old one-owner bike from a legendary builder are... a grease stain on the head tube and the rear derailleur housing popped out of it's ferrule... Damn.
this is one of the coolest bikes I’ve seen here in a while, for sure. Not being a collector I feel like it should be ridden hard like it was built for, but I appreciate the rarity of one of these in this condition. Plus early mtb are cool.
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Old 10-01-21, 02:09 PM
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ofajen
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Excellent, all the way around! 👍

Otto
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Old 10-04-21, 08:34 AM
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That is beautiful! He looks pretty excited about it too.
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Old 10-31-21, 10:15 AM
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Hey everyone, thanks for your comments. I will show them to my buddy. Since I took that photograph he has started riding the bike again—distances of 4 to 7 miles at this point. We go together usually, but he has done a few rides on his own. Each time he gets a little stronger. He remembers the days when a 50-mile ride was nothing to him.
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