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What can I do here to make Square Wheels less sad??

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...I think this is my next project, a Carlton Flyer from the early 70's.  Either this one, or a Richard Sachs bike from the same time frame that I finally got decals for.

The Carlton is a sweet bicycle, top of the line for them at that time.  But I'm having trouble figuring out how to touch up the flamboyant green paint, which is a complicated process of a transparent green/bronze over a reflective undercoating.  The Sachs is just red, and recently repainted with automotive enamel.  So if I put on the decals, it might jump to first in line.

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2 hours ago, AirwickWithCheese said:

You are a bicyle hippie guru. I am sure it will be great!   

...this is a real challenge.  Not certain you understand the complexities of matching a flamboyant paint job.

There's all this transparency going on, so it's difficult to fade in your work.  I might have to wait until the next psilocybin mushroom bloom here to get this right.

 

It would be horrible to get it wrong, because the original paint is still pretty nice.  This was like the Aston Martin of British criterium bikes back in ancient times. Think "licensed to kill."

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On 1/21/2018 at 7:39 PM, Page Turner said:

...I think this is my next project, a Carlton Flyer from the early 70's.  Either this one, or a Richard Sachs bike from the same time frame that I finally got decals for.

The Carlton is a sweet bicycle, top of the line for them at that time.  But I'm having trouble figuring out how to touch up the flamboyant green paint, which is a complicated process of a transparent green/bronze over a reflective undercoating.  The Sachs is just red, and recently repainted with automotive enamel.  So if I put on the decals, it might jump to first in line.

What do you do with these bikes when you are done and where do you even find them in the first place???

Tom

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1 hour ago, Razors Edge said:

What do you do with these bikes when you are done and where do you even find them in the first place???

Tom

...I ride them. I only buy the ones that are sized appropriately, and there is a two car garage here filled with them. Some of them will be moving on in the next few years.

They're all off the Sacramento and San Francisco Bay Area Craigslist.  High zoot steel bikes are all over the place here, due to the long history of affluence and year round riding season.

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2 minutes ago, Page Turner said:

...I ride them. I only buy the ones that are sized appropriately, and there is a two car garage here filled with them. Some of them will be moving on in the next few years.

They're all off the Sacramento and San Francisco Bay Area Craigslist.  High zoot steel bikes are all over the place here, due to the long history of affluence and year round riding season.

And what size are you?  I wouldn't mind a nicely refreshed 56/57-sized steel bike :D

Tom

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...I think that's what Cheese is looking for, too.  All of these are in the 58-61 range, so they might as well not even exist insofar as you're concerned.

Mostly I look for 59-60 seat tubes at this point, but I still have some racier 58's I set up back when I wanted more saddle to bar drop.  

 

56-57 is a popular size. If you look on the Craigslist where you live, I bet something will turn up.  Prices are down right now, because the steel riders are all going into nursing homes.:(

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3 hours ago, Page Turner said:

...I think that's what Cheese is looking for, too.  All of these are in the 58-61 range, so they might as well not even exist insofar as you're concerned.

Mostly I look for 59-60 seat tubes at this point, but I still have some racier 58's I set up back when I wanted more saddle to bar drop.  

 

56-57 is a popular size. If you look on the Craigslist where you live, I bet something will turn up.  Prices are down right now, because the steel riders are all going into nursing homes.:(

Well, then, to answer your original question of "What can I do here to make Square Wheels less sad??", I suggest forwarding to me any 56/57 Richard Sachs you happen upon. That surely would make SW smile.

Tom

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...I note that this Cooper was the first bike in the thread.  Not to worry there are two more of them out there in the garage.:)

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.....today's miles courtesy of Raleigh and their International, Schwalbe tyre, and Velo Orange fenders.  The saddle adjustment, and maybe the saddle itself, need some work.

It's one of those new fangled leather ones from Selle Anatomica, and right out of the box, I can see I'm probably gonna need to lace it.  On the old Raleigh Pro's, you had to ride them for a while before the skirts started to flare, but these have been so improved that they do it when new.:angry:

 

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...I originally bought this Selle Anatomica saddle because of all the ecstatic (best saddle ever) reviews on the internet.

I't turning out to be very problematic for my needs, because after I laced it, it now squeaks like a hamster in the throws of epilepsy.:(

 

I have now melted a bunch of wax down between the leather and the rear support frame, in hopes that it might still prove to be an OK saddle.

But these are things I've never needed to do with a new, out of the box leather saddle before.:angry:  All in all, disappointing thus far.

 

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...if the wax don't work, my last idea is to cram some teflon tape up in the crevice between leather and frame at the back.

 

 

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...it's been too cold to paint here, sosince the Richard Sachs was already painted, and the paint well cured, I've been assembling it.

Here is what it looks like so far.  It's an early frame from him, a custom order originally sold through the Toga cycle shop in NYC back in the 70's. (He told me so over on e-Richie.)

 

I just put on the decals and installed the bearing assemblies.  I still need to build some wheels. The rest should go together rapidly after that.

 

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...Sekai 4000.  I cannot say enough good things about this bicycle.  

The frames were produced by a small frame shop in Japan, Miki.  They were marketed (mostly  on the West Coast) by a partnership of a local bike business in Seattle and a bicycle exporter in Japan. ( IIRC)  The guys who ran the business here were serious cyclists, and they sponsored a team for a lot of years in the 70's. Rebecca Twigg was one of their riders, and she trained on a 4000.

 

This one was a lot of work to restore, because it had some internal rust  issues.  But it's a wonderful ride.  More information on Sekai bikes here.

 

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...here's what their touring bike of the same vintage looks like.  Hi tensile double butted tubing , which you don't often see.

But it works well for something designed strictly as a utilitarian touring bike, where weight is much less of a concern.

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...this is what I mean by "some internal rust issues".

I bought it in the semi-darkness of an evening meeting at some guy's storage locker.

Looked OK on the exterior, and it was too dark to take it much apart, but this is what it looked like when I did.

 

Guessing, I think he just had it stored somewhere for a while near the coast somewhere, where the air is saltier.

 

 

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I've wondered about rust on the inside of tubes. I was thinking a wire tube brush on a string and on a ram rod type of thing would be good. I know there are tube brushes for things like boilers and heat exchangers. On my bike, I did the best I could with spray and things like rags on a string and on a stick. There are some sprays that will passivate the rust if you can remove the heavy surface rust.

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8 hours ago, donkpow said:

I've wondered about rust on the inside of tubes. I was thinking a wire tube brush on a string and on a ram rod type of thing would be good. I know there are tube brushes for things like boilers and heat exchangers. On my bike, I did the best I could with spray and things like rags on a string and on a stick. There are some sprays that will passivate the rust if you can remove the heavy surface rust.

...you can get a round wire brush  of the proper diameter for most older seat tubes, and attach it without too much trouble to a wood dowel.

So I do that on seat tubes if there's rust and flaking that will adversely affect the bottom bracket bearings.  But most of the other tubes and stays are inaccessible.

 

Your two choices (and I've done both) are total immersion in a shallow kiddie pool in oxalic acid solution (which you can still find at the hardware store..used as wood bleach), or using something less toxic to fill up the main frame tubes like Evapo-Rust. You miss the fork and the seat stays with that, but usually those are not that rusted because there's only a tiny braze hole to admit air/water.

If you do the fill up the frame thing, you need to block off all the holes and the BB openings, and then fill from the top of the seat tube.

 

For an interior spray oil finish afterward, I just use this stuff (recommended by the local frame builder guy as what he uses.)

 

412Qwge4zYL.jpg

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...I reached into a dark corner and pulled out my hipster bike today, then I rode it over for coffee and a pastry.

It's light, and it's fast.  And I've made some significant mechanical upgrades.  Sadly, I just don't get the single speed thing.:biker:

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...an old, but still good Legnano.  Needs a different wheel set, for which I have the hubs and am waiting on the rims.

But I wanted to ride it a little to see how it feels.  It's amazing people used to race on these.

 

 

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2 hours ago, donkpow said:

Are those rubber 'hoods' still in good shape? If so, you are very lucky.

...yeah.  I brought them back a little bit with Armor All.  That stuff is great on old hoods.

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...chipping away at the Richard Sachs.  Everything is aligned, the wheels are built, and it just will take a couple of dedicated days now.

Richar Sachs (progress) 001.JPG

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3 hours ago, Square Wheels said:

Show a picture of your bike barn.

...that window behind the hummingbird feeder leads right into it.

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...no. It would only make you sad, and that is not the purpose here.  No peeks inside.

You would either be sad for me or sad for all the people who used to own those bikes and sold them because they no longer got ridden.

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On 2/25/2018 at 2:19 PM, Page Turner said:

...an old, but still good Legnano.  Needs a different wheel set, for which I have the hubs and am waiting on the rims.

But I wanted to ride it a little to see how it feels.  It's amazing people used to race on these.

 

 

Legnano 1 001.JPG

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

...now looks like this.  I think it might be finished.

 

 

Legnano red  (complete) 001.JPG

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On 9/6/2015 at 12:19 PM, Page Turner said:

Here is one from March of this year. Rauler was an operation that also built contract frames for Colnago.

 

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...remember this one ? It was not too bad in terms of paint, but the original decals were starting to look rough and the chrome on the right chainstay was rusted and pitted pretty badly from being abused and being Italian. So because it's such a nice riding bicycle, and easily the equal or better of a Colnago, I decided to repaint and decal it here at home.  For some reason unknown to me, bike repaints by professionals have reached into the stratosphere in pricing, with 8 and 900 bucks being often quoted for a first class repaint with decals.  I have a crummy little paint gun ( from Harbor Freight )and a portable compressor, so I decided to give it a try.

 

Decals will set you back about 40-50 bucks to start, and if you use good auto epoxy paint, that's probably gonna set you back another 20 bucks for the color coat, and either 20 bucks for the clear coat in a two part spray bomb (which is what I used) or 60-80 bucks for the quart size that is way more than you need for one bike (that you mix and spray yourself. ) Otherwise, if you've ever painted with a spray gun, it's pretty straightforward. The hardest part by far is color matching, and figuring out what they used originally for a primer color and base color.  In this case, I ended up pretty close with a dark grey self etching primer, and something from House of Kolor called "Marine Blue"  in trying to match "Rauler Blue".  It's not especially well prepped, just roughed, derusted on the chainstay, and primed.  But that spray bomb clear coat is shiny enough that you don't notice it very much. :)

If your time is worth anything to you, do not get into doing this.

 

 

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 And, it would even be neat to see a start to finish documentation on some of them.

Tom

 

 

...so anyway, I got that Carlton Flyer up at the top of the page repainted and rebadged,  I even did some of the lug lining in gold.  I started reassembly today.

These photos will show you why I think that "start to finish documentation"  pictures are kind of boring. I know when ever I see them for a car restoration, it puts me to sleep.

 

Before and after pictures are always interesting, so the before is way up at the top of the page, and here is the current repaint.  It's pretty difficult to achieve a successful repaint on a "flamboyant" finish, so I just went with a golden green that looks good with the gold decals and lug lining, and clear coated everything.  The Carlton Flyer was their top of the line bike at the time.  The box of miscellaneous parts is exciting if you are trying to put together a more or less accurate representation of one, but to most people it just looks like a box of miscellaneous parts. I think I'll do that patterned lining on the seat stay caps in gold, too.  Later, when it's cooler.

 

That's a genuine Campagnolo Record ( not Super Record) set of front and rear derailleurs in the box.  And the GB engraved bars, while narrow by today's standards, are the schizzle.:)

I already built up some wheels for this, so it shouldn't take more than a week or ten days to put it back together. Less if I get a couple of cooler days where I can work on it for 6-8 hours.

 

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4 hours ago, donkpow said:

How do you feel about dropout adjuster screws? I'm thinking anymore that their presence is more of a nuisance than benefit.

...I like them.  They let me fiddle around with the wheel placement and centering, so I have a reference point for changes.  

With the newer tyres, I don't flat very often.  So the original rationale for quick wheel changes is a moot point.

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I just bury the axle in the drop out. When I build up the bike, I check alignment with a tape from the BB spindle center to the center of the wheel axle. If it is square, I'm good to go without the adjuster screws. Modern derailleurs don't need those screws, either. From what I have read, the adjusters were used to help fine tune shifting. I've not seen anything in this area because I just put on new derailleurs.

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1 hour ago, donkpow said:

I just bury the axle in the drop out. When I build up the bike, I check alignment with a tape from the BB spindle center to the center of the wheel axle. If it is square, I'm good to go without the adjuster screws. Modern derailleurs don't need those screws, either. From what I have read, the adjusters were used to help fine tune shifting. I've not seen anything in this area because I just put on new derailleurs.

...well see, you're into practical transportation.  I, OTOH, will happily restore something with what was, even at the time, a second rate derailleur just because it says Zeus on it.  Then I spend the rest of the time I ride on it fiddling around with the god damn thing trying to get it to work better.  People who do this call themselves "enthusiasts".  I don't really know why.  We should call ourselves "masochists".

This Zeus Competition has the additional "advantages" of being French metric tubing, French threaded, and to have been built with the rear dropouts slightly askew from the horizontal, so the rear wheel only sits straight in one spot in the drops.  So you can see where those adjusters come in handy. :)

 

 

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