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Which would you pick?

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Which would you pick?

Old 08-16-19, 07:25 PM
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trailmix
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Which would you pick?

I am going to look at a couple of bikes for my brother-in-law who is in need of a good, no-frills bike that can handle everything from college commuting to weekend 60 milers.
I found 3 candidates I would like to hear opinions.
1. 1983 or 84 Cannondale ST
2. 1986 Bridgestone 300
3. 1984? Univega Sportour
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Old 08-16-19, 07:32 PM
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All can do the job, but I'd pick the Univega Sport Tour. Think it would be best all arounder and less name recognition gives it a slight advantage should thieves walk by the 3 of them sitting together with no one around. Don
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Old 08-16-19, 07:40 PM
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This is my personal ranking, ymmv:
1) Cannondale ST
2) Univega Sportour
3) Bridgestone 300

The Univega and Bridgestone look like entry / mid level steel bikes. The sport tour is probably spec'd much better. I also believe the ST frames are very nice riding bikes.

Then again, I AM biased!
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Old 08-16-19, 07:49 PM
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Comparable bikes, comparable components, Initially I'd be looking at condition and price to decide.

All equally clean (or rough) I'm looking at the Cannondale 1st. Big fan of the US made Al frameset, and the wide-range sport touring gearing would be my pick. OTOH, I'd be leery of high miles on the Cannondale frame, if it looks like it's spent a long life on the road I'd have to go with either of the steel frame options. The springier steel frames are going ride more comfortably anyway, and feel like a safer hi-mileage bet to me. (even so, I still have Cannondales hanging on the wall, I'm just a fan).
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Old 08-16-19, 07:55 PM
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I'm a big fan of the Miyata-built Univegas. Some years of the Sport Tour used triple butted tubing, but I believe this is an '84 below, which would not have. Most likey Champion double butted, good light stuff. Very nice bikes, real sleepers.


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Old 08-16-19, 08:12 PM
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Beautiful bike. Looks like the one I am going to look at except yours is in better shape. This one has been in storage for some time.

Originally Posted by mkeller234 View Post
This is my personal ranking, ymmv:
1) Cannondale ST
2) Univega Sportour
3) Bridgestone 300

The Univega and Bridgestone look like entry / mid level steel bikes. The sport tour is probably spec'd much better. I also believe the ST frames are very nice riding bikes.

Then again, I AM biased!
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Old 08-16-19, 08:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Danny S View Post
Comparable bikes, comparable components, Initially I'd be looking at condition and price to decide.

All equally clean (or rough) I'm looking at the Cannondale 1st. Big fan of the US made Al frameset, and the wide-range sport touring gearing would be my pick. OTOH, I'd be leery of high miles on the Cannondale frame, if it looks like it's spent a long life on the road I'd have to go with either of the steel frame options. The springier steel frames are going ride more comfortably anyway, and feel like a safer hi-mileage bet to me. (even so, I still have Cannondales hanging on the wall, I'm just a fan).
Just curious, what would make you leery of a higher mileage Cannondale?
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Old 08-16-19, 08:16 PM
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ST. So smooth
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Old 08-16-19, 08:28 PM
  #9  
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The blue one.
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Old 08-16-19, 09:15 PM
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Originally Posted by trailmix View Post
Just curious, what would make you leery of a higher mileage Cannondale?
'Fraid I just had the old "Steel is Real" mantra beat into me. Not a tensile strength issue, I'm concerned about fatigue resistance and Steel has it all over Al in that regard. Back in the day, Cannondale hung up cutaways of it's butted frames at busier bike shops. I was shocked to see just HOW thin the aluminum was in center sections. I mean coke can thickness. Oversized tubing makes up much strength, and I love the look, but as an old Schwinn tech I'm gonna require high mileage frames to be steel.

I'm so old that aluminum is MY high tech light weight material, and Cannondales are my "newer" US made pick (have to realize I grew up screwing Schwinns together). But I'm not gonna pretend aluminum has the safe usable lifespan of a steel frame.

Jm2cw, ymmv.
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Old 08-16-19, 09:39 PM
  #11  
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This is like asking: "do you want a poke in the eye, slap to the face, or kick to the ass?"
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Old 08-16-19, 10:02 PM
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Originally Posted by thinktubes View Post
This is like asking: "do you want a poke in the eye, slap to the face, or kick to the ass?"
More like "Would you like a blackberry pie, and apple pie or a rhubarb pie. Each come with ice cream, of course."

The Cannondale is the blackberry, BTW.
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Old 08-16-19, 10:30 PM
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The ST Cannondales are so overbuilt (in terms of wall thickness, compared to modern racing aluminum) that their fatigue life should be completely fine.

Do all three fit tires of the same size? I'm personally convinced that our deteriorating infrastructure basically requires 32mm tires on road bikes at this point and 35's or 38's are even better for anyone except racers. I know the Cannondale will fit wider tires.
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Old 08-17-19, 01:16 AM
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Originally Posted by trailmix View Post
1. 1983 or 84 Cannondale ST
2. 1986 Bridgestone 300
3. 1984? Univega Sportour
.
I've had a bunch of Univegas. Never wanted to own a cannondale. Even if the bridgestone were a 400, I'd still want the Sportour.
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Old 08-17-19, 10:46 AM
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+1 on the Univega SporTour. Never owned or even rode a Cannondale so I googled Cannondale ST & 1st review that came up: Vintage Bike Review: 1989 Cannondale ST1000 | CYCLEBUTTCRACK
wherein reviewer says it weighs 28 pounds (same as my 1991, steel, Trek 520). Under "The Bad" he lists aggressive frame geometry that didn't allow a comfortable riding position plus Poor Braking due to the "steel wheels"! hopefully, his example had a retrofitted, clunker wheel set because steel wheels should eliminate it from consideration. Don
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Old 08-17-19, 01:52 PM
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Of the three choices, Cannondale ST without a doubt. There are enough old aluminum framed Cannondales out there that I think we can finally dispense with the lifespan issue.
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Old 08-17-19, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by ollo_ollo View Post
+1 on the Univega SporTour. Never owned or even rode a Cannondale so I googled Cannondale ST & 1st review that came up: Vintage Bike Review: 1989 Cannondale ST1000 | CYCLEBUTTCRACK
wherein reviewer says it weighs 28 pounds (same as my 1991, steel, Trek 520). Under "The Bad" he lists aggressive frame geometry that didn't allow a comfortable riding position plus Poor Braking due to the "steel wheels"! hopefully, his example had a retrofitted, clunker wheel set because steel wheels should eliminate it from consideration. Don
That persons review is worth the paper it's written on. I've personally never seen a Sun Mystral steel rim. If you can't tell the difference between steel and aluminum, can't spell Deore correctly, and can't identify a cassette from a freewheel, I'll likely discount pretty much all you have to say.
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Old 08-17-19, 02:58 PM
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All good solid bikes and the first LBS where I worked sold all of them. But the answer is the Cannondale. It's a higher end bike than the other two, and will be much more responsive, similar to a top end racing bike of the time. The frames were IIRC all the same, whether it was their entry level model or top model, so uprading as necessary would be reasonable. No problem doing weekend 60 mile rides.
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Old 08-17-19, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by ollo_ollo View Post
+1 on the Univega SporTour. Never owned or even rode a Cannondale so I googled Cannondale ST & 1st review that came up: Vintage Bike Review: 1989 Cannondale ST1000 | CYCLEBUTTCRACK
wherein reviewer says it weighs 28 pounds (same as my 1991, steel, Trek 520). Under "The Bad" he lists aggressive frame geometry that didn't allow a comfortable riding position plus Poor Braking due to the "steel wheels"! hopefully, his example had a retrofitted, clunker wheel set because steel wheels should eliminate it from consideration. Don
Worst bit of writing I have ever read. This person knows nothing about Cannondale or even bicycles in my opinion. The bike in the article is not a 1989 ST1000. It is a 1987 ST600. The 28 pound weight for the ST1000 includes fenders, bottle cages and front and rear pannier racks. Cannondale never made bikes with steel wheels.
This is a perfect example of donít believe everything you read.
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Old 08-17-19, 06:05 PM
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I also recommend the Cannondale. I have an 83 ST500, Cannondale's first bike. It's a great bike, well made and well spec'd.
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Old 08-17-19, 07:11 PM
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We spent the afternoon checking out the potential candidates and we ended up with the Univega. And the Cannondale.
First stop was the Cannondale which was in much better shape than I expected but unfortunately it turned out to be too small for my brother-in-law. Fortunately for me it fit me perfectly and for $100 I couldnít pass on it. It turned out to be an 83 model ST500.
The Univega turned out to be nice as well. It was equipped with 7 speed Suntour drivetrain featuring command shifters as well as a fresh set of Pasela PT tires.
A decent day of bike hunting was followed up with a 30 mile test ride on our new machines. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday if you ask me.
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Old 08-17-19, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by trailmix View Post
We spent the afternoon checking out the potential candidates and we ended up with the Univega. And the Cannondale.
First stop was the Cannondale which was in much better shape than I expected but unfortunately it turned out to be too small for my brother-in-law. Fortunately for me it fit me perfectly and for $100 I couldnít pass on it. It turned out to be an 83 model ST500.
The Univega turned out to be nice as well. It was equipped with 7 speed Suntour drivetrain featuring command shifters as well as a fresh set of Pasela PT tires.
A decent day of bike hunting was followed up with a 30 mile test ride on our new machines. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday if you ask me.
Congratulations, nice choices.
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Old 08-17-19, 09:17 PM
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N+1 for the Win

Originally Posted by trailmix View Post
We spent the afternoon checking out the potential candidates and we ended up with the Univega. And the Cannondale.
First stop was the Cannondale which was in much better shape than I expected but unfortunately it turned out to be too small for my brother-in-law. Fortunately for me it fit me perfectly and for $100 I couldnít pass on it. It turned out to be an 83 model ST500.
The Univega turned out to be nice as well. It was equipped with 7 speed Suntour drivetrain featuring command shifters as well as a fresh set of Pasela PT tires.
A decent day of bike hunting was followed up with a 30 mile test ride on our new machines. Not a bad way to spend a Saturday if you ask me.
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Old 08-18-19, 05:07 PM
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Instant Karma! Helping out the BIL, AND a nice score for cheap!

Well Done!
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