1970's French Tandem Restoration Project - Advice?!

pargeterw

Member
Hello all,

I'm just about to start restoring a 1973 Gitain Gaves Tandem, and have started a blog do document my progress, but, most importantly, to coalesce my inevitably huge number of questions for the tandeming community into one location.

http://gitaingaves.blogspot.co.uk/

I would be eternally grateful if anybody here had time to read the whole thing (it ended up longer than I meant it to...), and hopefully put in a few useful comments?

Thank you!

Will

 

biggs682

Smile a mile bike provider
Location
Northamptonshire
a nice looking tandem and how much work are you intending to do ?
 
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pargeterw

Member
No reason other than my own incompetence... That error is pretty widespread isn't it!
I will update it everywhere I can, but can't change the URL or any links I've posted will break!?! Woops!
 

biggs682

Smile a mile bike provider
Location
Northamptonshire
I reccommend you read the blog post linked in my first post! It'll tell you everything you want to know (and quite possibly some stuff you don't!).
sorry for not reading whole blog first thing this morning , but now having read it and looked at pics , it reminds me of my first tandem ride also on a Gitane tandem in the late 70's with the Kidderminster ctc i was the engine on the back whilst Neil White steared and braked !!!

yours sound a lot of the work required is a mix of updating and overdue maintanance . still nice

ps we own a modern Raleigh Venture tandem that is used by me and my 11 yr old daughter
 

steveindenmark

Legendary Member
I am not a cycle restorer but I do restore motorbikes.

The advice I would give, for what it is worth, is that you cannot please all the people all the time and so in this case please yourself. It is your money. 50% of the members on here would say "keep it original as possible" the other 50% would say "Make it practical". I would go along the lines of "Keep it original as possible, but make it practical" I like to sit on the fence. ^_^

Also remember that most people will not know what original is for this bike and so you can take liberties.

Have a figure in your mind and stick to it. Projects like this can suck money out of your account .

Steve
 
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pargeterw

Member
Have a figure in your mind and stick to it. Projects like this can suck money out of your account .
Thanks for this Steve; very sound advice!
 

wheres_my_beard

Über Member
Location
Norwich
Sounds like those are mostly servicing issues, than restoration. New gear and brake cables & cases, and brake pads and a good look at that drum brake (too look for wear on the shoes, and set the cable correctly) will make a real difference. The BB and rear mech need attention but shouldn't be too costly (new spring, cables etc or lube, and new VO BB you found). IMHO, on this kind of project there's no point replacing parts that work, especially as you have lots of older parts that might not be compatible, or be able to take the strain of the new (collapsing rims from modern brakes etc); replace the bare minimum, and parts that your body directly connects with (saddle, pedals, bars and grips) and leave the rest alone. I think you'll be happier with the end result that way, and so will your bank balance.
 
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pargeterw

Member
Sounds like those are mostly servicing issues, than restoration. New gear and brake cables & cases, and brake pads and a good look at that drum brake (too look for wear on the shoes, and set the cable correctly) will make a real difference. The BB and rear mech need attention but shouldn't be too costly (new spring, cables etc or lube, and new VO BB you found). IMHO, on this kind of project there's no point replacing parts that work, especially as you have lots of older parts that might not be compatible, or be able to take the strain of the new (collapsing rims from modern brakes etc); replace the bare minimum, and parts that your body directly connects with (saddle, pedals, bars and grips) and leave the rest alone. I think you'll be happier with the end result that way, and so will your bank balance.

Yeah, I meant renovation, not restoration really...

All the cables were brand new for the London to Brighton, but there's a lot to be said for new housing... The brake pads were new also, but were completely worn down in one day due to the chromed steel rims! (I'll be replacing both of these) I'm currently planning on ditching the existing drum in favour of one of THESE. Now, while the Handlebars and Stem do work, as do the brake levers, they're incredibly uncomfortable, and so I'm going do disagree with you and replace them anyway! I'm possibly going to use a quill-threadless adapter, to make it a bit more future-proof, too. At the moment it's the new brake pads being worn down by the old rims, not the other way around! I probably won't replace the pedals, as these are also an obscure french thread...
 

wheres_my_beard

Über Member
Location
Norwich
Mrs WMB had a mid 80's Raliegh with a similar finish on the steel rims, and they were a real pain in terms of braking ability or lack of, so replacing them is probably a good idea, or using a pad with a hard compound, which will compromise durability with performance, but may last more than one ride! Those holes/ dimples seem to be grit magnets which probably won't help the pads last long at all.

Have you identified everything you need/ what your budget will be??

We refurbed a Royal Mail bike last summer, and ended up spending a fair bit of money and time on it. It was all worth it, but we probably spent way more than we thought we would when we first got it (luckily it was free), so beware!!
 
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pargeterw

Member
Yes, I'm putting together a spreadsheet (yeah, I'm cool?) to compare all my options, and work out costs. I'll forward this on to the budget holders (it actually belongs to my Aunt and Uncle at the moment, I'm doing the labor, for them, with the idea that I'll get to use it regularly, and eventually inherit it.
 
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pargeterw

Member
Hello everyone, (if, indeed anyone is still following this thread?)
There is a third (proper) (and probably final, at least until Christmas) post on the *NEW LOOK BLOG*
Even if you can't be bothered to read, or reply to this new literary masterpiece, you should go and have a look at the new background that I've made, as it took aaaaaaaaaaggggggggggeeeeeeeeeessssssssss and I don't want to feel that the work was wasted. (it was a bit of a dreary theme before, wasn't it?)
Much love to you all, and thank you for supporting me thus far,
Will
 
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