Rebuilding a very old bike - crazy?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by Doug Kanter, May 15, 2003.

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  1. Doug Kanter

    Doug Kanter Guest

    I just moved to a neighborhood where the roads are much more conducive so biking. I'd like a new
    bike, but financially, it's not possible right now. The $500-$800 range is where I've seen things I
    like. So, I'm toying with an idea:

    I have a 30 year old Paris Sport steel racing bike whose geometry still feels right to me. Although
    there are a few tiny chips in the paint, with tiny rust spots, the frame feels and looks sound to
    me. No odd flexing or creaking, either. I could repair the paint problems in an afternoon. The seat
    is just a couple of years old and quite comfortable. And, I added a luggage rack which serves as the
    basis for an ingenious fishing rod transporting device (not yet patented).

    But:

    -The brake cables are cracked. Pads are just 3 years old, with little use. It's not braking quite
    right, but I'm guessing this is due to some light surface corrosion on the rims, something I
    could clean up.

    -The shift cable is frayed at the derailleur to the point where I doubt it could be refastened after
    the mechanism is removed for thorough degreasing & cleaning (which it needs, badly).

    -(Skinny) tires are fair, but should be replaced, and I'm wondering if I could switch to something a
    little heftier for times when I have to deal with a short stretch of gravel road.

    Up to this stage, two local shops have quoted under $100 or so to repair these things.

    Onward:

    - The shifters are on the crossbar, or whatever you call the tube that runs from front to back.
    I hate the location. And, they're the lever type where the rider has to determine how far to
    push them in order to engage properly, which they usually don't. So, I'm wondering about new,
    modern shifters.

    - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars? If a mechanic's already going to be removing
    cables, might be a good thing to combine the labor (and cable measurement efforts).

    - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is
    cracking badly.

    I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came in under $200-$250, is it
    just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall apart anytime", but
    hell...it's 30 years old. I'd appreciate any and all advice, warnings, guesses, and psychic visions.
    I'm not looking to create a bike that I'd ride across the country with. I just want something safe,
    with mechanisms that don't make me want to shoot the bike and leave it on the side of the road.

    -Doug
     
    Tags:


  2. In article <[email protected]>, "Doug Kanter"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > -The brake cables are cracked. Pads are just 3 years old, with little use. It's not braking quite
    > right, but I'm guessing this is due to some light surface corrosion on the rims, something I could
    > clean up.

    easy to change. I am using still pads 10-12 years old.

    > -The shift cable is frayed at the derailleur to the point where I doubt it could be refastened
    > after the mechanism is removed for thorough degreasing & cleaning (which it needs, badly).

    easy to change.

    > -(Skinny) tires are fair, but should be replaced, and I'm wondering if I could switch to something
    > a little heftier for times when I have to deal with a short stretch of gravel road.

    I like the Avocet Cross tires. I'm not sure if they are available in 27" if your wheels are
    that size.

    > - The shifters are on the crossbar, or whatever you call the tube that runs from front to back. I
    > hate the location. And, they're the lever type where the rider has to determine how far to push
    > them in order to engage properly, which they usually don't. So, I'm wondering about new, modern
    > shifters.

    You'll need the matching derailleurs and often the wheel/cassette to go with this especially index
    shifting. The cost will add up quickly. You might want to see if you can get a mount to put the
    levers on the handlebar steerer stem.

    > - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    > than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars? If a mechanic's already going to be removing
    > cables, might be a good thing to combine the labor (and cable measurement efforts).

    you can put a flat bar. But you'll need new brake levers (and have to match the brakes)

    > - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is cracking
    > badly.
    >
    > I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came in under $200-$250, is it
    > just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall apart anytime", but
    > hell...it's 30 years old. I'd appreciate any and all advice, warnings, guesses, and psychic
    > visions. I'm not looking to create a bike that I'd ride across the country with. I just want
    > something safe, with mechanisms that don't make me want to shoot the bike and leave it on the side
    > of the road.
    >
    > -Doug
     
  3. Doug Kanter wrote:

    > I just moved to a neighborhood where the roads are much more conducive so biking. I'd like a new
    > bike, but financially, it's not possible right now. The $500-$800 range is where I've seen things
    > I like. So, I'm toying with an idea:
    >
    > I have a 30 year old Paris Sport steel racing bike whose geometry still feels right to me.
    > Although there are a few tiny chips in the paint, with tiny rust spots, the frame feels and looks
    > sound to me. No odd flexing or creaking, either. I could repair the paint problems in an
    > afternoon. The seat is just a couple of years old and quite comfortable. And, I added a luggage
    > rack which serves as the basis for an ingenious fishing rod transporting device (not yet
    > patented).
    >
    > But:
    >
    > -The brake cables are cracked. Pads are just 3 years old, with little use. It's not braking quite
    > right, but I'm guessing this is due to some light surface corrosion on the rims, something I could
    > clean up.
    >
    > -The shift cable is frayed at the derailleur to the point where I doubt it could be refastened
    > after the mechanism is removed for thorough degreasing & cleaning (which it needs, badly).
    >
    > -(Skinny) tires are fair, but should be replaced, and I'm wondering if I could switch to something
    > a little heftier for times when I have to deal with a short stretch of gravel road.

    What size are the wheels? (27" or 700c) Most likely they're 27", and those tire sizes are somewhat
    more difficult to find (not impossible). Harris Cyclery has a good selection.
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/tires/630.html

    Also, be sure to clean out & repack the hubs.

    >
    >
    > Up to this stage, two local shops have quoted under $100 or so to repair these things.

    If you can build a fishing rod transportation device, you can probably do these repairs yourself
    (and make money fast :) ). You'll save a bundle of money which can be put towards better equipment,
    plus you'll learn how to fix things if something should break or fail.

    >
    >
    > Onward:
    >
    > - The shifters are on the crossbar, or whatever you call the tube that runs from front to back. I
    > hate the location. And, they're the lever type where the rider has to determine how far to push
    > them in order to engage properly, which they usually don't. So, I'm wondering about new, modern
    > shifters.

    Most modern shifters are the "brifter" type; that is, BRake lever & shIFTERs combined. These can be
    pretty pricey. Also, I bet the brakes on the Paris Sport are Mafac Racers. Will brifters work with
    those? (I don't know) You might have to look into mountain bike-type brake levers.

    >
    >
    > - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    > than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars? If a mechanic's already going to be removing
    > cables, might be a good thing to combine the labor (and cable measurement efforts).

    One major problem you'll have with this item is that French bikes are built of odd-size steel. Go
    poke around http://www.sheldonbrown.com and look for the article on French bikes. You could keep the
    stem, but you might also have difficulty finding a new, comfortable handlebar that fits the stem.

    >
    >
    > - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is cracking
    > badly.
    >
    > I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came in under $200-$250, is it
    > just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall apart anytime", but
    > hell...it's 30 years old. I'd appreciate any and all advice, warnings, guesses, and psychic
    > visions. I'm not looking to create a bike that I'd ride across the country with. I just want
    > something safe, with mechanisms that don't make me want to shoot the bike and leave it on the side
    > of the road.

    Depending on how big you are (I'm 6' 6" & I used to have a Paris Sport 27" frame) you might be
    better off finding a used bike at a garage sale or such.

    >
    >
    > -Doug
     
  4. Jchase

    Jchase Guest

    Doug Kanter wrote:

    <snip>

    > - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    > than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars? If a mechanic's already going to be removing
    > cables, might be a good thing to combine the labor (and cable measurement efforts).
    >
    > - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is cracking
    > badly.
    >
    > I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came in under $200-$250, is it
    > just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall apart anytime", but
    > hell...it's 30 years old.

    Doug, if you will be road and bike trail riding, no "extreme" stuff, and you want convenient
    shifting, upright handlebars, and good tires, you may be in the market for a "city" or "comfort"
    bike. These can often be had for $250-$300, particularly if you can find a "last year" model, and
    won't be the sort of bike you hate after a while. You will probably be fine with the 18 or 21
    speeds; all modern brakes (outside of "department store" bikes) work well, and you'll have no fears
    of hidden defects.

    This is only $50 or so more than your complete rebuild. There's a lot extra to work out. As another
    reply noted, changing tires may be difficult, and wheel swaps out of your price range. If you go
    from drop to upright handlebars, an entirely new set of brake levers in needed. The old brakes
    probably can't match new designs either.

    I'd spend the $100 on basic repairs, and then explore your neighborhood for a while on the old gray
    mare. Once you've convinced yourself that you're going to keep on biking, and have windowshopped a
    bit, you can get a new bike.

    Joe
     
  5. Gary S .

    Gary S . Guest

    On Thu, 15 May 2003 17:07:32 GMT, jchase <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Doug Kanter wrote:
    >
    ><snip>
    >
    >> - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    >> than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars? If a mechanic's already going to be removing
    >> cables, might be a good thing to combine the labor (and cable measurement efforts).
    >>
    >> - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is cracking
    >> badly.
    >>
    >> I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came in under $200-$250, is
    >> it just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall apart anytime",
    >> but hell...it's 30 years old.
    >
    >Doug, if you will be road and bike trail riding, no "extreme" stuff, and you want convenient
    >shifting, upright handlebars, and good tires, you may be in the market for a "city" or "comfort"
    >bike. These can often be had for $250-$300, particularly if you can find a "last year" model, and

    >This is only $50 or so more than your complete rebuild. There's a lot

    >I'd spend the $100 on basic repairs, and then explore your neighborhood for a while on the old gray
    >mare. Once you've convinced yourself that you're going to keep on biking, and have windowshopped a
    >bit, you can get a new bike.
    >
    I would agree with Joe here, going for a "last year's" or a used bike of the type you want may cost
    less than transforming and upgrading your existing bike, especially if you are paying for the labor.
    Learn to do the work, and the economics change.

    Going through similar with a friend, who wants the perfect bike for $200 total. We found a great
    deal at $300 for a used bike in his size and for what he wanted, but then he decided that he needed
    the secondary brake levers.

    Happy trails, Gary (net.yogi.bear)
    ------------------------------------------------
    at the 51st percentile of ursine intelligence

    Gary D. Schwartz, Needham, MA, USA Please reply to: garyDOTschwartzATpoboxDOTcom
     
  6. Doug Kanter

    Doug Kanter Guest

    "Gary S." <[email protected]> wrote in message news:p[email protected]...
    > >
    > I would agree with Joe here, going for a "last year's" or a used bike of the type you want may
    > cost less than transforming and upgrading your existing bike, especially if you are paying for the
    > labor. Learn to do the work, and the economics change.
    >

    I'm considering it. I have tons of tools, but some of the stuff for this bike....there are some
    really oddball tools needed. If that's another $50-$75, then the economics REALLY change. If it were
    a relatively new bike, just out of warranty, I'd probably pay for some of the work, since much of it
    is directly connected with safety.

    I'm gonna meditate on this tonight with a couple of beers and a fishing pole. :)
     
  7. On Thu, 15 May 2003 10:39:39 -0400, Doug Kanter wrote:

    > I just moved to a neighborhood where the roads are much more conducive so biking. I'd like a new
    > bike, but financially, it's not possible right now. The $500-$800 range is where I've seen things
    > I like. So, I'm toying with an idea:
    >
    > I have a 30 year old Paris Sport steel racing bike whose geometry still feels right to me.
    > Although there are a few tiny chips in the paint, with tiny rust spots, the frame feels and looks
    > sound to me. No odd flexing or creaking, either. I could repair the paint problems in an
    > afternoon. The seat is just a couple of years old and quite comfortable. And, I added a luggage
    > rack which serves as the basis for an ingenious fishing rod transporting device (not yet
    > patented).
    >
    > But:
    >
    > -The brake cables are cracked. Pads are just 3 years old, with little use. It's not braking quite
    > right, but I'm guessing this is due to some light surface corrosion on the rims, something I could
    > clean up.

    Brake pads and brake cables are cheap and easy to replace. You could easily do that yourself.

    > -The shift cable is frayed at the derailleur to the point where I doubt it could be refastened
    > after the mechanism is removed for thorough degreasing & cleaning (which it needs, badly).
    >

    Shift cable is easy to replace, and you can certainly do that yourself. And it's cheap.

    > -(Skinny) tires are fair, but should be replaced, and I'm wondering if I could switch to something
    > a little heftier for times when I have to deal with a short stretch of gravel road.

    You can certainly get decent tires no matter whether it's 27 x 1 1/4 or 700, almost certainly 27".

    > Up to this stage, two local shops have quoted under $100 or so to repair these things.
    >
    > Onward:
    >
    > - The shifters are on the crossbar, or whatever you call the tube that runs from front to back. I
    > hate the location. And, they're the lever type where the rider has to determine how far to push
    > them in order to engage properly, which they usually don't. So, I'm wondering about new, modern
    > shifters.

    You have now turned down the expensive road. Your frame is almost certainly not worth this level of
    effort and expense. If you don't like downtube shifters, fine: you can get bar end shifters that
    you can use in friction mode for fifty bucks or less. You can learn how to use them effectively in
    short order, and that won't cost anything. (Of course it's possible; we all used to know how.)
    Converting this bike to index shifting of any kind won't be an economical proposition, and would be
    fiscally unsound.

    >
    > - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    > than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars?

    How about getting them adjusted correctly? I'm much older than you, and my joints don't ache with
    drop bars.

    If a mechanic's already going to be removing cables, might
    > be a good thing to combine the labor (and cable measurement efforts).

    If you want to change the handlebar and the stem and the type of shifter and brake lever and also go
    to indexing you might just as well give this bike to the Salvation Army and buy a new one.

    > - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is cracking
    > badly.

    Brake hoods are about $20 plus installation. Or you could just rip them off and do without. Many
    cheap bikes back in the day came w/o brake hoods.

    >
    > I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came in under $200-$250, is it
    > just plain nuts to bother?

    It won't and you would be plain nuts to even contemplate it.

    I'm tempted to
    > think "Hey...the frame could fall apart anytime", but hell...it's 30 years old. I'd appreciate any
    > and all advice, warnings, guesses, and
    > psychic visions. I'm not looking to create a bike that I'd ride across the country with. I just
    > want something safe, with mechanisms that don't make me want to shoot the bike and leave it on
    > the side of the road.

    Sounds to me as though you'd be best off with a different bike.
     
  8. Dan Daniel

    Dan Daniel Guest

    On Thu, 15 May 2003 14:39:39 GMT, "Doug Kanter" <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I just moved to a neighborhood where the roads are much more conducive so biking. I'd like a new
    >bike, but financially, it's not possible right now. The $500-$800 range is where I've seen things I
    >like. So, I'm toying with an idea:
    >
    >I have a 30 year old Paris Sport steel racing bike whose geometry still feels right to me. Although
    >there are a few tiny chips in the paint, with tiny rust spots, the frame feels and looks sound to
    >me. No odd flexing or creaking, either. I could repair the paint problems in an afternoon. The seat
    >is just a couple of years old and quite comfortable.

    <<< snip >>>>

    >
    >I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came in under $200-$250, is it
    >just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall apart anytime", but
    >hell...it's 30 years old. I'd appreciate any and all advice, warnings, guesses, and psychic
    >visions. I'm not looking to create a bike that I'd ride across the country with. I just want
    >something safe, with mechanisms that don't make me want to shoot the bike and leave it on the side
    >of the road.
    >
    >-Doug
    >

    You aren't nuts, but I wouldn't expect to save much money in all of this. It's a labor of love, not
    economics, to restore and upgrade a bike like this.

    Check the bottom bracket for any information- the metal rings, cups, etc. If it is a non-standard
    (not 'English' or 'Italian' threading), the odds are that some other things on the bike will be a
    bit 'off' and hard to find parts for.

    Check over Sheldon Brown's site and articles. A good starting point-

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/oldbikes/index.html

    If you want to learn about many aspects of bike part sizing and compatibility, cruise some obtuse
    corners of the internet to get information, and be patient and willing to do things out of the
    ordinary, you can probably make this bike work. Hard to say, but it also might just all fall into
    place smoothly. If you are going to pay others to do all the work, it will be hard to do it cheaply.
    And you can be surprised at how such a project can snowball.

    I've done it twice and both times I ended up spending twice what I originally thought. I don't
    regret it at all, but it was time and money. You decide- you can buy a new/used bike that deals with
    90% of your concerns and get on with riding, or you can view this as a 'project' that will take some
    time and money and have its own rewards.
     
  9. Peter Cole

    Peter Cole Guest

    "Doug Kanter" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I just moved to a neighborhood where the roads are much more conducive so biking. I'd like a new
    > bike, but financially, it's not possible right now. The $500-$800 range is where I've seen things
    > I like. So, I'm toying with an idea:

    Forget fixing that bike, shell out $250-300 and get a decent hybrid, you'll be much happier.
     
  10. If you like the bike as is, fix it. If you want to start upgrading the shifters, handlebars and all
    the associated componants (derailers, levers, etc..) you will end up spending at least $300. For
    that you can by a nice brand new bike that will be much nicer than the one you have. You don't have
    to spend $500 to $800 for a new bike.

    "Doug Kanter" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I just moved to a neighborhood where the roads are much more conducive so biking. I'd like a new
    > bike, but financially, it's not possible right
    now.
    > The $500-$800 range is where I've seen things I like. So, I'm toying with
    an
    > idea:
    >
    > I have a 30 year old Paris Sport steel racing bike whose geometry still feels right to me.
    > Although there are a few tiny chips in the paint, with tiny rust spots, the frame feels and looks
    > sound to me. No odd flexing or creaking, either. I could repair the paint problems in an
    > afternoon. The seat is just a couple of years old and quite comfortable. And, I added a luggage
    > rack which serves as the basis for an ingenious fishing rod transporting device (not yet
    > patented).
    >
    > But:
    >
    > -The brake cables are cracked. Pads are just 3 years old, with little
    use.
    > It's not braking quite right, but I'm guessing this is due to some light surface corrosion on the
    > rims, something I could clean up.
    >
    > -The shift cable is frayed at the derailleur to the point where I doubt
    it
    > could be refastened after the mechanism is removed for thorough
    degreasing &
    > cleaning (which it needs, badly).
    >
    > -(Skinny) tires are fair, but should be replaced, and I'm wondering if I could switch to something
    > a little heftier for times when I have to deal with a short stretch of gravel road.
    >
    > Up to this stage, two local shops have quoted under $100 or so to repair these things.
    >
    > Onward:
    >
    > - The shifters are on the crossbar, or whatever you call the tube that
    runs
    > from front to back. I hate the location. And, they're the lever type
    where
    > the rider has to determine how far to push them in order to engage
    properly,
    > which they usually don't. So, I'm wondering about new, modern shifters.
    >
    > - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    > than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars? If
    a
    > mechanic's already going to be removing cables, might be a good thing to combine the labor (and
    > cable measurement efforts).
    >
    > - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is cracking
    > badly.
    >
    > I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came
    in
    > under $200-$250, is it just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall
    > apart anytime", but hell...it's 30 years old. I'd appreciate any and all advice, warnings,
    > guesses, and psychic
    visions.
    > I'm not looking to create a bike that I'd ride across the country with. I just want something
    > safe, with mechanisms that don't make me want to
    shoot
    > the bike and leave it on the side of the road.
    >
    > -Doug
     
  11. Garmonboezia

    Garmonboezia Guest

    "Doug Kanter" <[email protected]> wrote in
    news:[email protected]:

    > I just moved to a neighborhood where the roads are much more conducive so biking. I'd like a new
    > bike, but financially, it's not possible right now. The $500-$800 range is where I've seen things
    > I like. So, I'm toying with an idea:
    >
    > I have a 30 year old Paris Sport steel racing bike whose geometry still feels right to me.
    > Although there are a few tiny chips in the paint, with tiny rust spots, the frame feels and looks
    > sound to me. No odd flexing or creaking, either. I could repair the paint problems in an
    > afternoon. The seat is just a couple of years old and quite comfortable. And, I added a luggage
    > rack which serves as the basis for an ingenious fishing rod transporting device (not yet
    > patented).
    >
    > But:
    >
    > -The brake cables are cracked. Pads are just 3 years old, with little use. It's not braking quite
    > right, but I'm guessing this is due to some light surface corrosion on the rims, something I could
    > clean up.
    >
    > -The shift cable is frayed at the derailleur to the point where I doubt it could be refastened
    > after the mechanism is removed for thorough degreasing & cleaning (which it needs, badly).
    >
    > -(Skinny) tires are fair, but should be replaced, and I'm wondering if I could switch to something
    > a little heftier for times when I have to deal with a short stretch of gravel road.
    >
    > Up to this stage, two local shops have quoted under $100 or so to repair these things.
    >
    > Onward:
    >
    > - The shifters are on the crossbar, or whatever you call the tube that runs from front to back. I
    > hate the location. And, they're the lever type where the rider has to determine how far to push
    > them in order to engage properly, which they usually don't. So, I'm wondering about new, modern
    > shifters.
    >
    > - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    > than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars? If a mechanic's already going to be removing
    > cables, might be a good thing to combine the labor (and cable measurement efforts).
    >
    > - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is cracking
    > badly.
    >
    > I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came in under $200-$250, is it
    > just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall apart anytime", but
    > hell...it's 30 years old. I'd appreciate any and all advice, warnings, guesses, and psychic
    > visions. I'm not looking to create a bike that I'd ride across the country with. I just want
    > something safe, with mechanisms that don't make me want to shoot the bike and leave it on the side
    > of the road.
    >
    > -Doug
    >
    >
    >

    I love projects like this.

    If it were me, I'd remove all components and clean the frame as best I could. Maybe do a little
    sanding and touchup on the rusty spots, (but leave as much of the original paint as possible.) Auto
    parts stores have paint repair kits in standard colors.

    Then I'd install a modern sealed cartridge bottom bracket and think hard about doing the same for
    the headset. Modern bottom brackets are zero maintanance and they last years. Some measuring will be
    necessary and a set of calipers is the easiest way, although dividers and a scale will also be
    accurate. Or just bring the bike in to the shop and ask the repair and parts people what the sizes
    and dimensions are on your frame.

    There's no reason you can't use straight mountain bars on this frame but they do need to fit the
    stem clamp, (mountain bars and road bars are different diameters.) However, doing so will mean new
    brake levers. You don't have to spend a mint here but I wouldn't cheap out either.

    I haven't looked at new mountain components for a while now but shifters and brake levers have been
    integrated since the early nineties. The shifting is indexed and it's questionable how it'll
    interact with your drivetrain (10 sp). It's probably doable though.

    All the above is what I would do, but I tend to go overboard with this stuff. The only thing
    original left would be the frameset, stem and seatpost most likely. :p I just thought I'd throw it
    out there and you can take what you want and leave the rest.

    To get the bike ridable and tolerable you probably could get by with just replacing cables, cable
    housing, tires, chain, and brake pads. If the new chain skips then you might need to also replace
    the freewheel and/or chainrings.
     
  12. A Muzi

    A Muzi Guest

    "Doug Kanter" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I just moved to a neighborhood where the roads are much more conducive so biking. I'd like a new
    > bike, but financially, it's not possible right now. The $500-$800 range is where I've seen things
    > I like. So, I'm toying with
    an
    > idea:
    >
    > I have a 30 year old Paris Sport steel racing bike whose geometry still feels right to me.
    > Although there are a few tiny chips in the paint, with tiny rust spots, the frame feels and looks
    > sound to me. No odd flexing or creaking, either. I could repair the paint problems in an
    > afternoon. The seat is just a couple of years old and quite comfortable. And, I added a luggage
    > rack which serves as the basis for an ingenious fishing rod transporting device (not yet
    > patented).
    >
    > But:
    >
    > -The brake cables are cracked. Pads are just 3 years old, with little use. It's not braking quite
    > right, but I'm guessing this is due to some light surface corrosion on the rims, something I could
    > clean up.
    >
    > -The shift cable is frayed at the derailleur to the point where I doubt it could be refastened
    > after the mechanism is removed for thorough degreasing
    &
    > cleaning (which it needs, badly).
    >
    > -(Skinny) tires are fair, but should be replaced, and I'm wondering if I could switch to something
    > a little heftier for times when I have to deal with a short stretch of gravel road.
    >
    > Up to this stage, two local shops have quoted under $100 or so to repair these things.
    >
    > Onward:
    >
    > - The shifters are on the crossbar, or whatever you call the tube that
    runs
    > from front to back. I hate the location. And, they're the lever type where the rider has to
    > determine how far to push them in order to engage
    properly,
    > which they usually don't. So, I'm wondering about new, modern shifters.
    >
    > - I'm not crazy about the downturned handlebars. I'm 50, and I don't need any more aching joints
    > than I'm already getting. Maybe new handlebars? If
    a
    > mechanic's already going to be removing cables, might be a good thing to combine the labor (and
    > cable measurement efforts).
    >
    > - The plastic cowl which covers the hinges of the break levers (at the handlebars) is cracking
    > badly.
    >
    > I haven't priced these last three things yet. But, if I did, and it came
    in
    > under $200-$250, is it just plain nuts to bother? I'm tempted to think "Hey...the frame could fall
    > apart anytime", but hell...it's 30 years old. I'd appreciate any and all advice, warnings,
    > guesses, and psychic visions. I'm not looking to create a bike that I'd ride across the country
    > with. I just want something safe, with mechanisms that don't make me want to shoot the bike and
    > leave it on the side of the road.

    Although I am partial to French bikes generally, or at least I hate them less than most bicycle
    mechanics, you should go to a thrift store and find a mid-1980s Japanese-built mid-price bike for
    $20 in your size and _then_ have the bars changed and basic 7-speed index equipment fitted. Should
    come to about $180 altogether.

    That's assuming you absolutely cannot afford a modern $300~$400 bike with upright bars, 700C wheels
    with 38mm tires and everything else you like in the local bike shop. That would be a much better
    value, albeit double the cash outlay.

    A Paris Sport just isn't much starting material for this kind of project, although it is technically
    possible. And avoid getting a second bike with steel rims, BTW. Aluminum rims are clearly superior.

    --
    Andrew Muzi http://www.yellowjersey.org Open every day since 1 April 1971
     
  13. >Although I am partial to French bikes generally, or at least I hate them less than most bicycle
    >mechanics, you should go to a thrift store and find a mid-1980s Japanese-built mid-price bike for
    >$20 in your size and _then_ have the bars changed and basic 7-speed index equipment fitted. Should
    >come to about $180 altogether.

    It might not be as much of a junker as people are apparently assuming.

    In fact it might not even be French. See what little information is available at Classic Rendezvous
    on these, it isn't necessarily a POS. I'd have to see some photos, personally.

    --

    _______________________ALL AMIGA IN MY MIND_______________________ ------------------"Buddy Holly,
    the Texas Elvis"------------------
    __________306.350.357.38>>[email protected]__________
     
  14. go with this bike. 30 years is not so old. shifting is overrated. just put it ina gear you like
    and ride. shift when desperate. if you must shift, friction shifting is best. See
    rivendellbicycles.com for the arguments in favor of friction. your handlebars are fine, they just
    need to be higher so you don't need to reach over so far. ride what you got, fix it up bit by bit.
    but get new tires. have fun!
     
  15. Doug Kanter

    Doug Kanter Guest

    "Eric S. Sande" <[email protected]> wrote in message news:[email protected]...
    > >Although I am partial to French bikes generally, or at least I hate them less than most bicycle
    > >mechanics, you should go to a thrift store and find a mid-1980s Japanese-built mid-price bike for
    > >$20 in your size and _then_ have the bars changed and basic 7-speed index equipment
    fitted.
    > >Should come to about $180 altogether.
    >
    > It might not be as much of a junker as people are apparently assuming.
    >
    > In fact it might not even be French. See what little information is available at Classic
    > Rendezvous on these, it isn't necessarily a POS. I'd have to see some photos, personally.

    Well....there's a medallion that says "Made in France". :)
     
  16. Jeff Starr

    Jeff Starr Guest

    "Doug Kanter" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > >
    > > It might not be as much of a junker as people are apparently assuming.
    > >
    > > In fact it might not even be French. See what little information is available at Classic
    > > Rendezvous on these, it isn't necessarily a POS. I'd have to see some photos, personally.
    >
    > Well....there's a medallion that says "Made in France". :)

    Hi, I have a circa '76 French 10-speed, a "Champion Du Monde", in my research I have found that
    there are "French" bikes and then there are "French Bikes". What I mean is that there are the true
    French bike that has all French fittings, thread sizes, etc and then there are French bikes like
    mine that came with Simplex derailleurs and pedals that have the common 9/16" thread size. If your
    bike is like mine, then it will be much easier to update. After many years of storage, I brought the
    bike out last summer, I put new tubes, tires, and a new saddle on it. I then had it tuned up and
    rode it 700 miles last season. With very few problems, I had to have the bottom bracket rebuilt [it
    started making noise]. Anyway, I too like the geometry of this bike, I can have the seat at a proper
    height and still put my foot down when stopped, while seated. Long story, more to the point, I just
    had Shimano derailleurs, Sora front, Altus 6-speed in the back, new chain, 6-speed freewheel, all
    new cables, and Shimano thumb shifters [friction front, indexed rear], all installed, parts and
    installation for $130. This was all done at a local dealer [Milwaukee WI]. I would think that brake
    levers would not be all that expensive. If you are going to diy, then check out Nashbar and
    Performance. I think there are a lot of things you can buy online[Cyclocomputer, accessories,
    various components] and a few that you are better off getting locally, like riding shoes and maybe
    the saddle. I had to return a saddle that just didn't suit me. As far as the frame goes, if it was a
    decent bike and not terribly abused, I would think that it would be fine. Although I'm no expert, in
    fact I've come to these bike forums to learn and share my experiences. None of the things I did were
    necessary, but they sure are worthwhile. With decent convenient shifters, I find the I am utilizing
    my gears better. Even though our riding season has just begun for us fair weather guys and I'm still
    not at peak condition, leg wise, my average speeds are up. My only other, somewhat major [ in the
    context] purchase was a pair of Shimano PDM324 clipless pedals and a pair of riding shoes. Seeing as
    I am new here, I'll mention that I am 48 yrs old and my right leg is an above the knee artificial.
    It's no big deal, it causes a few limitations, but nothing major. My goal this year is to ride a
    1000 miles this summer, no trips just daily rides. Jeff
     
  17. Buck

    Buck Guest

    "Jeff Starr" <[email protected]> wrote in message

    > rebuilt [it started making noise]. Anyway, I too like the geometry of this bike, I can have the
    > seat at a proper height and still put my foot down when stopped, while seated. Long story, more to
    > the point, I

    Please forgive me, but how on earth is that possible (without you leaning the bike over)? Take a
    look at Sheldon Brown's article on proper seat height:
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/saddles.html#height

    I can imagine that you can reach the ground by sliding on the saddle enough to rock your hips and
    reach with your toes and reach the ground. But this is hardly putting your foot down as I see it. If
    you can put your fut down, you either have a bottom bracket that is so low that pedal strikes are
    common for you or your seat is just too low.

    -Buck
     
  18. Jeff Starr

    Jeff Starr Guest

    "Buck" <j u n k m a i l @ g a l a x y c o r p . c o m> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > "Jeff Starr" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    >
    > > rebuilt [it started making noise]. Anyway, I too like the geometry of this bike, I can have the
    > > seat at a proper height and still put my foot down when stopped, while seated. Long story, more
    > > to the point, I
    >
    > Please forgive me, but how on earth is that possible (without you leaning the bike over)? Take a
    > look at Sheldon Brown's article on proper seat height:
    > http://www.sheldonbrown.com/saddles.html#height
    >
    > I can imagine that you can reach the ground by sliding on the saddle enough to rock your hips and
    > reach with your toes and reach the ground. But this is hardly putting your foot down as I see it.
    > If you can put your fut down, you either have a bottom bracket that is so low that pedal strikes
    > are common for you or your seat is just too low.
    >
    > -Buck

    Gee Buck, it was not the main point of the post, so I guess I didn't give it any thought. I do it
    without thinking, so on my next ride, I'll try to remember to check if I am mostly on my toes or
    flat footed with the bike leaned over. I do know that I do lean to the left, I can't flat foot it
    with the bike straight up. But I stay on the saddle, put my foot down and my saddle is not too low.
    The main reason for my post, was that I think the original poster could upgrade his bike for a
    reasonable cost, if he wants to stay with that frame. But of course that is just my opinion and my
    one experience with doing something similar. I certainly didn't come here with the idea that I have
    any special knowledge of cycling. In fact I'm interested in these forums to learn more about
    bicycling and to hang with fellow enthusiasts. By the way, I've already read many of Sheldons
    articles and they have been extremely helpful. Take care, Jeff
     
  19. Buck

    Buck Guest

    "Jeff Starr" <[email protected]> wrote in message

    > Gee Buck, it was not the main point of the post, so I guess I didn't give it any thought. I do it
    > without thinking, so on my next ride, I'll try to remember to check if I am mostly on my toes or
    > flat footed with the bike leaned over. I do know that I do lean to the left, I can't flat foot it
    > with the bike straight up.

    You are right, it wasn't the main point of the post, but it is something you should consider. It is
    possible that your seat position is not optimal and you might be going down the road to knee
    problems. As a person who has knee problems (chondromalacia), I have learned that seat position is
    critical to their health. Properly positioning the saddle precludes the ability to touch the ground
    while sitting on that saddle. If you can do this, it is very likely that your saddle position is
    wrong. If you are feeling pain in your knee, something you didn't mention but I wouldn't be
    surprised to hear, you should reconsider your saddle height.

    > The main reason for my post, was that I think the original poster could upgrade his bike for a
    > reasonable cost, if he wants to stay with that frame. But of course that is just my opinion and my
    > one experience with doing something similar. I certainly didn't come here with the idea that I
    > have any special knowledge of cycling. In fact I'm interested in these forums to learn more about
    > bicycling and to hang with fellow enthusiasts. By the way, I've already read many of Sheldons
    > articles and they have been extremely helpful.

    This is a great forum for discussing cycling issues, whether it is setup, repair, rides, whatever!
    Whenever someone posts something that is suspect, someone will call them on it. This is one of the
    ways we learn what we are doing wrong. We've all been through this at one time or another. Actually,
    several times for me. But I've learned a lot and try to pass on what I've learned when I can.

    There are many folks around here who work hard to keep decent bikes out of the junkyard. I have a
    garage full of them myself. In some cases they are just too far gone to deal with or have strange
    parts that are hard to find. If anyone has a problem with your story about your bike, rest assured
    they will bring it up here. But it is usually with a good heart and in good fun. Rare is the jerk in
    this r.b.m. and you will find most of them get killfiled in short order so no one responds to them
    anyway. Welcom aboard.

    -Buck
     
  20. Doug Kanter

    Doug Kanter Guest

    "Buck" <j u n k m a i l @ g a l a x y c o r p . c o m> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    >
    > There are many folks around here who work hard to keep decent bikes out of the junkyard.

    This is a good motive, for bikes or anything else that can be made safely operable. I'm not a pack
    rat, but I hate tossing something that's still sound.

    But anyway: Today, I'll pick up brake & shifter cables and install them over the next couple of
    nights. I keep forgetting that I own Sloan's bike repair book, which explains how to properly adjust
    cables (for stretch) and derailleurs. I degreased the chain & derailleur this weekend, because
    recently, my son started the lawnmower in the garage, blowing bits of grass & leaves right into
    these parts of the bike. It's amazing to see clean metal again. The derailleur has a few little rust
    spots, but not near the moving parts. It looks good enough to at least get the bike running, so I
    can decide if I'm still comfortable with the thing, especially after adjusting the height of the
    handlebars. The crank sounds and feels fine - no roughness detected. If all goes well, I'll replace
    tires, and then consider new handlebars, if I don't like them after adjustment.
     
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