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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Madison WI
    Posts
    280

    Restoring Vintage Bike advice

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    I just purchased via CL a bike that is nearly identical to this only mine is 1975, 1 year older due to the plastic bulky headbadge:

    http://forums.teamestrogen.com/showt...=peugeot+mixte

    It included pump, rack, fenders, generator & lights and a bell. Also it has the same upright handlebars.

    Are there good websites to teach someone the basics of vintage restoration?

    I have a LOT of questions - if anyone has the patience/knowledge to help me, I'd appreciate any and all

    * Wheel size - these are 27" steel rims. I want to replace with aluminum but don't want to spend a lot of $. In general, would many of the 80's 10 speeds have 27" wheels? I was thinking it might be a cheap way to get a hold of 27" wheels.

    * Chain - should I buy a new chain? How do I know what size to purchase? Should I jsut take it to the shop?

    * Stem lowering - is there a certain name for the wrench that would help me loosen the bolt for the stem?

    * Brake Pads - how do I know what type of brake pads to purchase?

    * Changing out cables - are there any DIY websites that show the basics of cable changing?

    * Small rust spots - I have a few small rust spots (nothing major) - how should I treat them

    * Mother's Mag - I have some chrome polish that has a name like that. I know I can use it on chrome, but what is the best way to clean the painted surface?
    Alison - mama of 2 (8yo and 6yo)
    2009 Independent Fabrication steel Crown Jewel SE
    1995 trek 800 steel MTV

  2. #2
    Kitsune06 Guest
    I'll answer the couple I can...

    As far as running new cables, you can usually get info on that from the parktools website. I'm not sure if you're going for a period-correct restore or a modernization, and that might only make the difference between teflon/ptfe lined cable housings or not. If you're just changing the cable and leaving the housing, try finding some ProGold cable/chain lube. Very, Very good stuff, I've used it on motorcycle cable housings and always use it on my bikes. The solvent dries and leaves the actual lubricant on dry, but the solvent will work rust and crud out of the housings for you. Don't be afraid to use it VERY liberally.

    small rust spots- If they don't bother you, gently oil or wax them and leave them be. If these are on the steel of the frame and it bugs you, go to your local everything-store (kmart, fred meyer, walmart, whatever) and get a multi-pack of sandpaper if you have a lot or a couple pieces of extra xtra fine grit if there is only a little here or there. (We're talking 600-1000 grit) Tear off a bit and fold it over and over on itself 'til you've got an eraser-sized bit of it and just go to town on those spots down to bare metal. If you like the worn look of bare metal, use a touch of clear nail polish on it. You could also use colored nail polish to touch up the spot with a color similar enough to your frame color. If the rust is on a highly polished bit of steel or where it used to be chromed, there's a great product called 'nev-r-dull' that is very nice on chrome and with a little elbow grease, gets rid of rust really well. In a pinch, though, you could probably use WD-40 and crumpled aluminum foil.

    Paint cleanup- This depends on how bad it is. If it's badly oxidized and scratched, and you really feel like going nuts, touch up your scratches as above, let the paint/polish dry really well, then take 2000 grit sandpaper, put water and a little soap in a bowl and wet-sand 'til you get a nice, even dull grey haze. Then use coarse and fine rubbing compounds and finish with Nufinish car wax. If you don't feel like going crazy, Nufinish all by itself should do well, too.

    The above is just the product of spending the last few years restoring 30-40 yr old motorcycles to showroom condition, but it ought to work on bicycle paints as well. That Mother's Mag&Aluminum polish is INCREDIBLE stuff. Love it, love it, love it.
    Last edited by Kitsune06; 04-04-2011 at 06:42 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Madison WI
    Posts
    280
    Thanks for the tips! I'm looking forward to playing around with this bike this summer
    Alison - mama of 2 (8yo and 6yo)
    2009 Independent Fabrication steel Crown Jewel SE
    1995 trek 800 steel MTV

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Land of 1,000 Bicycles
    Posts
    582
    You've probably come across Sheldon Brown's site before, but just in case...

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/
    2001 Cannondale R500 <3
    2011 Specialized Ruby Elite Apex
    2021 Tangential Speedarama

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Orygun
    Posts
    1,197
    Quote Originally Posted by tangentgirl View Post
    You've probably come across Sheldon Brown's site before, but just in case...

    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/
    Hehe. I was just going to post that. RIP Sheldon. I've learned so much from him. I can actually set my own derailleurs and everything now.

    Also, what Kit sed. I've seen her work. She's learned a lot about how to make stuff shine and look showroom again, on a tight budget. I'm amazed everytime I see her "barn finds".
    Oh, that's gonna bruise...
    Only the suppressed word is dangerous. ~Ludwig Börne

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Nebraska
    Posts
    1,193
    From my experience: Just grab a wrench and start playing. Cultivate the nice people at your LBS and when you have a question, ask them.

    I restored my bike during the winter months, so when I wandered into the bike shop with a confused look on my face they had time to help me.

    Yes, 27 inch wheels were still standard in the '80s (don't ask how I know). I'd look any old wheels over Very Carefully. After all, Stuff happens to wheels. (I'm thinking about learning how to build wheels. A project bike is good for that kind of learning.)

    It's possible you'll want a new chain. If so, you probably also want a new 10 speed cluster because of tooth wear. On a budget, I think I'd just clean and lube the chain and see how far it gets me. Unless things are really worn, you can ride the bike until the budget allows for a shiny new chain/cluster.

    Brake pads are still pretty standard. The specific kind you put on is your choice. The trick is to put them on so they don't squeak. Mine squeak.

    As for tools, and their names, I do what my Dad taught me and call all of them "that G%%$ D@**#$ doohicky." It works for me, and Dad was a darned good mechanic.

    I have a copy of Zinn and the Art of Road Bike Maintenance. It got me through the changing out cables and a lot of other things. You do need special cutters for cables, so unless you are planning on doing a bunch of bike work, it really is best to go to the LBS and have them cut the cables for you.

    Two sites I found for parts that you don't know you need (yet) are:

    http://www.loosescrews.com

    for small thingamabops, and

    http://www.velo-orange.com

    for the bigger stuff.

    Also,

    http://www.parktool.com/blog/repair-help

    can be a big help.

    Good luck with the restoration. I know I learned more by just getting my hands dirty than I ever learned any other way.
    Give big space to the festive dog that make sport in the roadway. Avoid entanglement with your wheel spoke.
    (Sign in Japan)

    1978 Raleigh Gran Prix
    2003 EZ Sport AX

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Madison WI
    Posts
    280
    Thank you! I will check out that book.

    I also picked up a motobecane mirage (75'ish) which is in horrible shape. LOL. Once I took the drive, I couldn't not buy it (for 20). I think I'll strip it for the parts (kickstand, brake calipers, rear derrailleur) and see if I can't learn how to do the cabling partly by playing with that.
    Alison - mama of 2 (8yo and 6yo)
    2009 Independent Fabrication steel Crown Jewel SE
    1995 trek 800 steel MTV

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Madison WI
    Posts
    280
    LOL about the DoohickY! I think I will take my bike into this nice place that only does maintenance and buy some basic tools too. Thanks again
    Alison - mama of 2 (8yo and 6yo)
    2009 Independent Fabrication steel Crown Jewel SE
    1995 trek 800 steel MTV

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    2,560
    Oh, what a fun project! I hope you will let us know how it goes. I'd love to find a bike like that.

    In addition to Sheldon Brown, check out Bicycle Tutor. While not specifically aimed at restoration, it provides clear, step-by-step instructions on basic repairs/adjustments.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    6,449
    I don't know about everyone else, but I'd love a current picture of this find!
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

    Battswebb

    Pinarello Quattro~CAADX~ Zurich Lemond
    Specialized Romin Saddles

    Surly Krampus!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Madison WI
    Posts
    280
    I think I'll just change out the tires and live with the steel rims until I decide how much I love the bike I stopped to get some free "old ten speeds" and they were so rusty they really should be trashed (huffy & murry from the 80's left outside for decades).

    I just took some pics (with my dog ) but I will need dh to help me as my old computer with the softward I know how to format pictures is dead.

    I also ordered the Zinn book from the library.
    Alison - mama of 2 (8yo and 6yo)
    2009 Independent Fabrication steel Crown Jewel SE
    1995 trek 800 steel MTV

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Madison WI
    Posts
    280
    I have another question. I noticed the mafac racer centerpulls - the springs are rusty. Is tehre a way to replace them? It seems like a simple enough part (part 458 shown in the first diagram here http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/mafac.html)

    I have a junk bike (rusty motobecane mirage from the same time) and the Weinnman 999 centerpulls are in nicer shape so I suppose I could try that - but I'd rather restore the original parts if possible.
    Alison - mama of 2 (8yo and 6yo)
    2009 Independent Fabrication steel Crown Jewel SE
    1995 trek 800 steel MTV

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    2,559
    A 1975 bike will have a freewheel, not a cassette, and it will have 5 cogs on the freewheel. The rear dropout spacing will be 120 mm, rather than the 126 that was standard in the later 80s or the 130 that is standard now. That means you can't put a modern wheel in it. So if the rim is shot, it's a good chance to learn to build a wheel on the old hub. You can get 27" rims. If you need a new chain, ask for an 8-speed chain and that will work fine. Be warned that putting a new chain on with an old freewheel may lead to skipping, so locate a 5-speed freewheel before you replace the chain.
    Oil is good, grease is better.

    2007 Peter Mooney w/S&S couplers/Terry Butterfly
    1993 Bridgestone MB-3/Avocet O2 Air 40W
    1980 Columbus Frame with 1970 Campy parts
    1954 Raleigh 3-speed/Brooks B72

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Madison WI
    Posts
    280
    Thanks Deb for the help!

    Can I purchase any old 5 speed freewheel or does the french threading mean I need to purchase a special type?

    I did see these on ebay - if I want to replace my wheels, would it work to purchase a new freewheel plus these?

    http://cgi.ebay.com/Avenir-36H-Steel...57527515268143
    Alison - mama of 2 (8yo and 6yo)
    2009 Independent Fabrication steel Crown Jewel SE
    1995 trek 800 steel MTV

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Madison WI
    Posts
    280
    http://www.sheldonbrown.com/harris/french.html

    Here it says that most french bikes sold in the US used standard threading. But many past googled forum conversations let me to believe otherwise. I suppose I could order through my LBS where I think these guys would be pretty helpful: http://www.revolutioncycles.net/mtalk.html
    Alison - mama of 2 (8yo and 6yo)
    2009 Independent Fabrication steel Crown Jewel SE
    1995 trek 800 steel MTV

 

 

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