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Gitane City Link == $100 Bianchi San Jose

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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

Gitane City Link == $100 Bianchi San Jose

Old 05-09-20, 05:28 PM
  #1  
Dylansbob 
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Gitane City Link == $100 Bianchi San Jose

I'd seen that the Bianchi USA site was closing these framesets out for $100 and couldn't resist the urge. It seems these frames are rebadged San Joses, right down to the "Gitane" tubing sticker. Comes with a fairly nice loose-ball headset, but no cable hanger. I decided to go for a "French Fit" and purchased a 58cm for my 5'10" body.

I've only put a couple miles on it so far, I need to find a different bar setup. The 46 Cowchipper is too wide and a 42 traditional drop was too narrow. Currently wearing 42c Conti commuter tires (~1000g /pc), but looks to be room for a bit more. Total build weight is 22.5lbs, not horrible with the parts. I forgot to weigh the bare frame, but it didn't feel too bad. The fork felt every bit steel and is way stiffer than I had expected. I've been enjoying riding vintage conversions with really active forks, this one feels like a modern disc front-end. Very little movement.


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Old 05-09-20, 06:22 PM
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Awesome! Thanks for posting. I’ve been curious about these for a while and keep almost-buying one. Looking forward to hearing more. I must just have to get one...

Regarding the French fit, do you feel stretched out?
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Old 05-09-20, 07:01 PM
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Maybe a hair, but I think it has more to do with the super wide bars. When I tried the traditional drops, I had it paired with a 90mm stem. The chippers are on a 50mm.
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Old 05-09-20, 07:58 PM
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Such a good looking frame. Forgot to ask: any chainline issues? I read some things about that frame and chainline problems. Would a bigger front chainring be hitting the chain stays?

Also, I love your seat post!
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Old 05-09-20, 08:09 PM
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Yep, running a 42mm track chainline results in a maximum gear of 39t. I'm kinda tempted to dimple the stay to run a 42.


I was playing around with doing some cheap hydrodipping on some stems and seatposts.
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Old 05-09-20, 09:35 PM
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Nice! I was keeping an eye on these before I picked up my Nature Boy. I don't love the color/graphics on these but the frame seems like a really good deal.
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Old 05-10-20, 06:58 AM
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Price just went up lol
anyway, fun looking bike, enjoy!
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Old 05-11-20, 11:40 AM
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Nysss bike - gIad to see someone got one...

I had an early San Jose for a bit that I bought to use as a 29er SS when I couldn't ever find any of their various _ _SS mountain bikes in my size. It had a curved fork, rather than straight like yours, & rode very nice. But that was back in the day when I was a pretty aggressive off-road rider & it didn't take me too long to figure out that while a CXish bike was ridable on some our local MTB parks' trails, it was not really compatible with how I liked to ride at the time. But...then for ****zngigglz I flipped the wheel, put on a cog, & started riding it as a "Fixed MTB" - it taught me that riding slow could be a lotta fun.

There's actually much more to the story, but I don't want to bore you. Hope you enjoy yours as much as I enjoyed mine & its successor phiksie MTBs. Now you just to need find a "100% Chick Designed" sticker for it
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Old 05-11-20, 12:24 PM
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Nice rig. I was thinking about getting one of those frames before I found an IRO on eBay.
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Old 05-11-20, 12:24 PM
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As soon as my hip arthritis settles down and I get the fit dialed, I'll be flipping the wheel.
I totally feel you on slow can be more fun. We have a city mtb park nearby that I've been doing laps on various fixed cog machines. You can't go that fast on a 38/18, but you go alot faster than the weekend warrior types that have been descending upon the park during lockout.
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Old 05-20-20, 12:57 PM
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Nobody pointed out the front brake cable... unusual.

If you front brake cable lets go, the v-brake cross cable will drop into the front tire stopping rotation.
Wanna guess what happens next?
Dentist!

Most seem to install a "catcher" so that the cross cable can't drop that far.

All the best

Barry
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Old 05-20-20, 06:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Barry2 View Post
Nobody pointed out the front brake cable... unusual.

If you front brake cable lets go, the v-brake cross cable will drop into the front tire stopping rotation.
Wanna guess what happens next?
Dentist!

Most seem to install a "catcher" so that the cross cable can't drop that far.

All the best

Barry
Nice catch! You are totally right.
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Old 05-21-20, 10:38 AM
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That's a canti brake, dude. V brake uses a noodle and has the arms fairly parallel. Big difference.
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Old 05-21-20, 10:47 AM
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Oh yeah. I’m confused. Anyway, how has the bike been?
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Old 05-21-20, 11:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Dylansbob View Post
That's a canti brake, dude. V brake uses a noodle and has the arms fairly parallel. Big difference.
Are you saying canti does not suffer same issue, so no catcher required?

Barry
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Old 05-21-20, 01:14 PM
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This is running a canti brake. It can have that safety concern if certain considerations aren't met. Careful setup mitigates much of that worry.

As it's set up right now, if the housing were to come free from it's stop, there isn't enough slack to drop the straddle onto the tire. The straddle cable can't come out of carrier pulley, it's closed. No more dangerous than any other brazed-pivot brake.

Nobody used a safety catch in the '90s before vbrakes came out. Only during the mid 80s mtb era.
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Old 05-25-20, 09:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Barry2 View Post
Nobody pointed out the front brake cable... unusual.

If you front brake cable lets go, the v-brake cross cable will drop into the front tire stopping rotation.
Wanna guess what happens next?
Dentist!

Most seem to install a "catcher" so that the cross cable can't drop that far.

All the best

Barry
A link wire (instead of a straddle) also eliminates the problem:
https://www.universalcycles.com/shop...s.php?id=83435
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Old 05-26-20, 07:50 AM
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The frames are still on sale for $100.00 from what I can see. I think they'd be a great choice is you want bigger tires or are looking for a decent frame for your first build.
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Old 05-26-20, 09:58 AM
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Still available but only in 49cm...sad face...not like i need another project though haha.
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Old 05-26-20, 07:17 PM
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What a score at $100. Great looking bike!
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Old 05-31-20, 08:47 PM
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I've got a 58cm san jose, and just went with the silver cowbell deluxe over the cowchipper after feeling both out. That might be the bar you're looking for too. Might also wanna take a peek at the VO far bar.

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Old 06-10-20, 06:54 AM
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shoot if they had bigger sz runs id buy one id def get one and strip it the OG San Jose is too good a look.
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Old 06-15-20, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by somepetalhead View Post
shoot if they had bigger sz runs id buy one id def get one and strip it the OG San Jose is too good a look.
Looks like they are back up.
https://www.bianchiusa.com/store/git...eed-cream.html
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Old 06-30-20, 01:29 PM
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What's the rear end on these, I'd assumed 130 or 135 due to the wide tire clearance but is it 120? Wife swiped my hybrid and I'm thinking this with some mustache bars and an internal hub for a boardwalk cruiser.
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Old 07-01-20, 06:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth View Post
What's the rear end on these, I'd assumed 130 or 135 due to the wide tire clearance but is it 120? Wife swiped my hybrid and I'm thinking this with some mustache bars and an internal hub for a boardwalk cruiser.
130mm.
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