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Show us your Survivors

Old 06-05-21, 01:36 PM
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Chuck M 
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Show us your Survivors

I searched and out of all the “Show Us” threads I didn’t find one for survivors.

Something that I’m interested in is old bikes that are survivors. So many bikes had safety levers, chain guards, reflectors, spoke protectors and other items removed and tossed. Additionally a lot of saddles and handlebars get replaced and bikes get repainted. And of course there are legitimate upgrades made to bicycles over time. But when a bike survives for decades without any of these things happening I find it fascinating. I’m also amazed at some of the rare and classic bikes that are shown here in survivor condition and the occasional N.O.S. posts are unbelievable. So show us your complete or near complete as you found them survivors. The before and afters and those you kept them as you found them.

My old bikes are modest, bike boom bikes. But they have survived pretty much intact 40 or more years with the exception of a seat, a derailleur and a couple of reflectors missing.

1981 Takara 950 Deluxe 12 I found on craigslist. I had a Takara 960 Deluxe Touring in high school and this called out to me. I picked it up, brought it home, aired up the dry rotted tires and rode it around the block. I disassembled it, greased all the bearings, bought a cheap pair of Kenda gum-walls and replaced the foam bar grips with cotton tape. Some times I take it out on the same riverside paths I rode in high school. It is too small for me so I am saving it for my grandson. By the time he grows into it it will be 50 years old.





1980 Takara 970 Grand Touring. Another one I brought home, aired up the tires and rode around the neighborhood. It was a little less original as the Takara branded saddle was replaced by a Specialized saddle, the cable clips on the top tube are missing and replaced by plastic tie wraps and the Cat-Eye wheel reflectors are missing. I found a Takara branded saddle on eBay in excellent condition. The tires are Schwinn Records and dry rotted and cracked, but I still ride them from time to time. Plans are to get some Panaracer Paselas on it, go through all the bearings and take it on longer rides. Velo Orange has appropriate cable clips. It is a little large for me so the standover height is not the best, but the rest of the fit is great.



1983 Bridgestone Carmel mixte I picked up for my wife. The only thing not original was the RD. An appropriate replacement was easily found on eBay and another set of Kenda gum-walls were needed. The original saddle was not on it, but the guy I bought it from pulled it out of the back of his truck and asked me if I wanted it. My wife wanted me to paint it, but after cleaning it up she agreed that keeping it original was the right choice. It is a good bike for my wife and she has enjoyed riding with our granddaughter.


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Old 06-05-21, 01:52 PM
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I think this counts. A literal barn find purchased from Mike Fraysse. The frame had years of barn crud on it. I spent hours starting with 2000 grit wet sanding, then rubbing compound, then a clear coat polish. Some of the paint failed, but for the most part it came back to life. Wheels are from another life but are correct for the bike. Originals were large flange Campag laced to Super Champion Gentleman rims. Of course the pedals are not original.

20200910_143241 by L Travers, on Flickr
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Old 06-05-21, 01:55 PM
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It looks fantastic. I think the paint more than came back to life.
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Old 06-05-21, 04:05 PM
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Found this GR-27 recently. The Bluemels guards were probably added by the importer / dealer for the Dutch market. Other than that it looks as if it just rolled out of the factory.



It came with the original documents, price tag, and straps to hold the bike together when folded:

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Old 06-05-21, 04:24 PM
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A documented survivor.
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Old 06-05-21, 04:36 PM
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Cool, the documents themselves are survivors.
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Old 06-05-21, 04:47 PM
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1978 Jim Merz touring custom, built for the original owner to take to Paris brest Paris, it turned out to be a tad small so a Davidson was rush built and taken where they did very well.

Wish this bike had gone but then it may not be in the great condition it is in. The original owner did ride it quite a bit anyway and took great care of it.

Only things changed are the saddle, bar tape and tires.

This pic is from shortly after I got it and I took the Eclipse pannier brackets off as they were unattractive, later I met up with the original owner and he gave me the panniers and an extra Jannd set, I put the brackets back on and show it with the panniers now but no pics with them yet.

Maybe not just a survivor but I've seen several in bad shape despite being some of the finest when they were built


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Old 06-05-21, 07:00 PM
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That's all I own. These are three of my "patina classics." The only repainted bikes I own are the oldest in my collection, the 1959 Capo and one of the two 1960 Siegers.


1962 Carlton Franco-Suisse, as received from my wife's sister in December.


One of my two littermate 1960 Capo Siegers -- the "all original" one.


My UO-8 with barcon cables routed between the rack and the cylindrical Bellwether front bag.
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Capo: 1959 Modell Campagnolo, S/N 40324; 1960 Sieger (2), S/N 42624, 42597
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Old 06-05-21, 08:16 PM
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I had this Miyata 210 years ago. It was in brand new condition when I found it. It had reflectors, bar tape and all. I wish I still had it!!






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Old 06-05-21, 08:27 PM
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Here's a 1972 Raleigh Super Course that I picked up cheap about 10 years ago. Too small for me and too big for my wife so I sold it a few years later. Only change from stock was replacing the rock hard brake pads with some Kool Stops.

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Old 06-05-21, 09:37 PM
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Originally Posted by mkeller234 View Post
I had this Miyata 210 years ago.
Golly, it doesn't look a day over 180.....
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Old 06-05-21, 09:41 PM
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My '84 Univega Gran Tourismo WAS 100% stock (other than tires) when I bought it... the wheel reflectors didn't even make it into the 'before' picture and are already in my co-op donation bin...




BUT I felt the need to make it 'mine' by changing out a bunch of stuff... I'll be building a set of wheels using old-school Phil hubs/stainless spokes/Sun CR-18 rims (unless I find better rims) just because I want a set of 'bomb-proof' wheels to last me the rest of my days! The saddle will be a brown Brooks B-17 on a better 26.8 seatpost. Brake cables getting replaced with Shimano red Teflon-lined housing with slick stainless cables, and shifting will be ratcheting SunTour friction barcons with NOS SunTour bare coiled stainless housing and slick stainless inner cables. Red 'cork' bar tape, 27x1-1/4 Pasela TG tires, VO fluted fenders, and a 14-32 six speed freewheel (although I might use a 7-spd Ultra-spaced freewheel that I have in stock). Front Mountech derailleur will stay, and I have a near-mint (and bomb-proof) V-GT Luxe rear in stock to replace the rear Mountech... The 52/46/28 crankset will probably turn into a 46/42/28. On the rear will be a black Blackburn rear rack to hold some old-school Cannondale red 'Overland' panniers and a matching red 'Toot' seat bag -- still looking for red front panniers and a suitable front rack to fit the fork braze-ons. Brakes/levers/bars will be as stock, but KoolStop salmon brake pads. I have a brass bell, and a 500/150 lum LED USB-rechargable light set. Not sure if I want one- or two water bottle cages w/ oversize bottles because I really prefer a Zefal HP frame pump along the seat tube... Pedals are good to go, but I have toe clips/straps to add to them...

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Old 06-05-21, 11:23 PM
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Everyone I have is a survivor....no restos in my studio, only clean, polish, lube, and go!
Best, Ben
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Old 06-06-21, 07:22 AM
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1982 Schwinn Predator rummage sale find. Still had the original (worn) tires. Paid $20 for it, stashed it in the basement for ten years, and then sold it for $80.

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Old 06-06-21, 07:53 AM
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Here’s a new one I just picked up. Looks like it’s new from the bike shop.







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Old 06-06-21, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by thinktubes View Post
1982 Schwinn Predator rummage sale find. Still had the original (worn) tires. Paid $20 for it, stashed it in the basement for ten years, and then sold it for $80.
I didn't realize it until recently but people are into the old BMX stuff in a big way. Dads and grandfathers wanting to get them for their young ones because they had one I guess.

Originally Posted by sloar View Post
Here’s a new one I just picked up. Looks like it’s new from the bike shop.
And with a little shop sticker flair.
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Old 06-06-21, 05:09 PM
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I've never really been drawn to original bikes except to sell them. I never wanted a museum, just a stable of bikes I can call my own by tinkering.
This 84 Norco was all original but my arms rejected the bullmoose bars and my knees can't spin long (normal) cranks Before and after.




This 58 Raleigh Superbe 'clubish' bike is mostly all there. No inclination to ride it.


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Old 06-06-21, 05:14 PM
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I just picked up a 1982 Lotus Classique I found on FB Marketplace. Turns out the seller was the original owner, bought it back in Boston in '82, moved out to California with it, and didn't ride it much in the ensuing 39 years. I presume the hoods disintegrated, but otherwise, it had what appear to be the original tires - they're the same ones depicted in the 1981 catalog page I found online (note that I replaced the rear tire, on which the bead had pulled out of the rim on both sides at the valve area.) Still has the front and rear reflectors, with the front mount serving as a spacer in the headset and the rear working like the concave curved washer used to mount tear brakes on round brake bridges. Still has the original chain guard. Still has the dork disk, though I removed it to clean it, and it ended up looking damn near new! The paint is still at least semi-gloss, and the aluminum isn't all oxidized.



Here's the catalog page:

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Old 06-07-21, 12:20 AM
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My favorite bike was a $50 barn find survivor that was almost entirely original, but in desperate need of some love. A 1984 Centurion Elite GT in beautiful "super metallic bronze". I disassembled it, cleaned and removed all of the rust from everything, rebuilt it, then took it on it's maiden voyage... That's when I knew that I had a new favorite bike!!!

Since then, I've been made a few modifications to personalize it, but it's still all mostly original equipment. I do have plans to continue upgrading certain things though as I can afford to.


Here's a catalog shot from the '84 Centurion catalog.



The pic from the original FB marketplace ad. showing the condition as found.



Then this is what it looks like now. The next upgrades planned are to add some nice aluminum fenders, and get some better tires. It still rides like a Cadillac though even with the cheap tires!
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Old 06-07-21, 03:04 AM
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This bike is the reason I can climb hills I still ride it around town for errands.

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Old 06-07-21, 04:12 AM
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I have a few survivors but none compare to the barn find 1898 Glenwood. My friend found it while inspecting the home as an estate sale. The bike probably had been sitting since 1920 or so. Here it is as found and after my restoring it, right down to all it’s skip tooth wooden wheel geekness:



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Old 06-07-21, 04:38 AM
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Originally Posted by OldsCOOL View Post
The bike probably had been sitting since 1920 or so.
Surviving WWII scrap metal drives is high level surviving for a bicycle.
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Old 06-07-21, 04:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Chuck M View Post
Surviving WWII scrap metal drives is high level surviving for a bicycle.
If only bikes could talk. Each one would have a story to tell.
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Old 06-07-21, 09:15 AM
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I was restoring a $10 Goodwill Super Course, found someone selling N.O.S. Ross Super Grand Tours still in the box on eBay at a very low price. Hi Ten frame with stamped dropouts with a full Shimano 600 groupset. I used everything on the Super Course except the stem, bar caliper brakes and pedals which went on another bike. Sold the frame to a guy who intended to make a fixie. So this survivor lived in a box for years. Don







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Old 06-07-21, 08:15 PM
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Originally Posted by OldsCOOL View Post
If only bikes could talk. Each one would have a story to tell.
For your Glenwood, my imagination has me thinking along the lines of some young man not returning from Europe during WWI. But then how bizarre would it be if it sat since the Spanish flu pandemic for the same reason a lot of bikes were bought last year and never ridden?
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