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Motobecane Grand Touring

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Motobecane Grand Touring

Old 03-06-20, 07:47 PM
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Pedaledpetal
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Motobecane Grand Touring

I bought my bike years ago at a thrift store and before my first tour with it niavely took it to a Craigslist garage mechanic. He stripped it of it's suntour derailer, pedals, and more without my knowing at the time. I'd like to get the appropriate parts to replace what he swapped in. I have little idea where to start but thought I should identify the year before purchasing a derailer or anything else. Any advice is appreciated.
Also.. when I try to post photos it says no urls allowed until you have 10 posts. Huh?
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Old 03-06-20, 07:58 PM
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that's correct so keep posting 9 more times or maybe one easy clue: what sort of headbadge is this:
Round? Dimensional (plastic) shield? Flat shield?




all these pix courtesy of Velobase and copyright Velobase
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Old 03-06-20, 08:00 PM
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If you're lucky, yours will have a "Vitus 172"sticker on the seat tube and down tube shifters. That would put the bike in the late 70s. The best years for this bike. It would have had the SunTour V Luxe derailleurs.
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Old 03-06-20, 08:08 PM
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Don't have to have an exact match of parts. Find a co op, and talk to them about vintage parts. Depending on era, it could have a Swiss bb (that you need to reuse as they are hard to find), French sized headset. The rest of the parts are typical Japanese made, easy to find. Of all the French brands, Motobecane seemed to love, love, love Swiss BB. My usual source for replacement Swiss BB is another donor Motobecane. On the other hand, Motobecane often embraced standard Japanese parts. Instead of crappy plastic Simplex derailleur used on many vintage French bikes, Motobecane embraced well made, solid, Suntour derailleurs along with other Japanese parts.

To below, the Suntour Vx GT is a fine choice, and relatively common.

Last edited by wrk101; 03-06-20 at 09:20 PM.
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Old 03-06-20, 08:10 PM
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Is your goal to restore it to original factory spec? You may be able to find period Motobécane catalogs on-line that could help. Someone here might be able to decode the serial number to determine the date of manufacture.
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Old 03-06-20, 08:18 PM
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I suppose my main goal is to replace the cheap derailer he put on and maybe the pedals. And if like to know the year. There's a coop here in town where I'm visiting so maybe I'll stop in there. The headbadge is round and identical to the top photo posted. I am not finding any of the stickers mentioned.
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Old 03-06-20, 08:38 PM
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Ask at the Co-op for a Suntour Cyclone GT, VX-GT, or VGT-luxe. You cannot go wrong with those, and they probably have a drawer with a few to choose from.
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Old 03-06-20, 09:23 PM
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FWIW I have a 78 MB Grand Touring that came with Grand Jubliee wheels of the same year- during the bike boom they tended to use what they had on hand. Enjoy your Moto GT



78 Moto GT
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Old 03-06-20, 10:56 PM
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the round badge is typical of a Grand Touring from '74 to '76, the first 2 years had 1020 "light steel tubing" frames where the '76 had a Vitus double-butted tubing with Bocama lugs (a superior frame). All 3 used Suntour VGT Lux rear derailleurs, '74 and '76 should have downtube shifters while the '75 had stem shifters. Most other components are identical but I think the '76 would be the one to have if you're in luck.
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Old 03-07-20, 06:43 AM
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Here's mine. Bought this new sometime around 1976. Got a super deal. Maybe the dealer had trouble selling such a tall frame. I intended to buy a higher end bike when I could afford one, but I liked this Moto so much that I never upgraded. I put the original seat on here for the photo.


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Old 03-07-20, 06:47 AM
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Originally Posted by BigChief View Post
If you're lucky, yours will have a "Vitus 172"sticker on the seat tube and down tube shifters. That would put the bike in the late 70s. The best years for this bike. It would have had the SunTour V Luxe derailleurs.
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Old 03-07-20, 05:02 PM
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The serial number as far as I can tell is 4957061 803 although it is difficult to make out
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Old 03-07-20, 05:16 PM
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I have a Motobecane that I'm pretty positive is a 1977 (based on unique characteristics for that year) and the sn is 3547589. There are threads here that you can try to search out that suggest that Motobecane may have had no code to the SNs, just sequence numbers. And, who knows if they would be continuous or with gaps. If so, that would make yours late 70s to early 80s, later than 77 anyway.

A word of caution about French bikes -- my 1977 came with a metric threaded Normandy hub. Make sure to check carefully before replacing a freewheel.
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Old 03-07-20, 07:29 PM
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Mine...nice competent ride(s)





Drive side shot...

Non drive side...





Rare piece...flick stand...

...

Last edited by billnuke1; 03-07-20 at 07:31 PM. Reason: More words...
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Old 03-08-20, 06:38 AM
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Champagne Gold & Gun Metal Gray (both


made the same month)
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Old 03-08-20, 07:03 AM
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...stronglight, Suntour, and Huret...
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Old 03-08-20, 08:26 AM
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Here's the bumble bee that just went out the door.

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Old 03-08-20, 10:30 AM
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Pic assist:


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Old 03-08-20, 12:23 PM
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There were at least three versions of the Grand Touring bike imported into the US. One of the first was a hi-tensile frame with MAFAC Racer centerpulls, Stronglight 49 crank, Simplex derailleurs, a later version had a Vitus frame; Weinmann centerpulls, Suntour derailleurs and narrow 27" Rigida rims. The last, and best, had a Stronglight triple, and (I think) metal Simplex Derailleurs. The last ones had English threading. They were also the only ones I would consider a true touring bike.

I wouldn't worry about restoring one of these with original parts as the US models were simply equipped with what was available.
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Old 03-08-20, 02:16 PM
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I believe that is either a '78 or an '80. If it has a Vitus 172 sticker on the frame it's a '78. 1980 was 888 instead. Round headbadge and braze on top tube cable guides define that era.

A Suntour V-GT or Vx-GT RD would be appropriate. They were an inexpensive and very common but excellent derailleur at that time, and it shouldn't be to difficult to find one at a coop etc. Looks like the front derailleur is still original Suntour SL, so that's good.

I'd be more concerned that the wheels are original or at least good quality. IIRC they ere using Rigida 1320 27" rims at this time. From the pics it kinda looks like he stole your wheels and replaced with random junk, but I can't tell for sure from the pics. Should be presta valves front and back, Rigida rims, Normandy hubs with QR.

OEM pedals were basic Atom rattraps. They were $5 a pair at the time, but still a reliable and decent pedal. The main thing wrong with the pedals on there is they don't match.

Last edited by Salamandrine; 03-09-20 at 10:58 AM. Reason: TYPO
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