Road Bike Restoration!

Jeags

Member
Location
North Wales
Right, thanks to the lovely chaps in the 'Beginner' section, I have been advised to start a thread here detailing me (a complete cycling novice), restoring an old road bike I was given. The main thing I want from this is to get it to a ridable state and use it this spring/summer hopefully to gauge whether I want to pursue road cycling as a hobby in the future (and most likely buy a new road bike). I won't repeat much from the other thread linked below, but in summary, tyres are an older size - 27inch 7/8", but were new before bike was stored so look okay. Rims need cleaning up and rear needs trueing. Probably won't be the best fit for me, but hopefully a starting point enough for me to make my mind up.
Joe
 

Ajax Bay

Guru
Location
East Devon
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OP
J

Jeags

Member
Location
North Wales
Yeah, sounds like a plan. Give the frame some TLC. When I went for a quick spin up the road, I found the gearing to be unnatural being a lever system on the frame itself. Was that standard a while ago or has it been modified? Wondering whether I should see if I can adapt it and bring them closer to the handle by buying a kit? Or on the other hand, may keep it as original as possible. Hopefully I'll get some advice on here for stuff like that!
 

houblon

Well-Known Member
It could be fun restoring it. You might have trouble finding decent tyres though, and those are steel rims so the brakes won't ever be as good in the wet as modern ones on aluminium rims. Stay away from Llanberis Pass when it rains :-)

Gear levers were always like that till about 1990something. You can indeed buy levers that mount on the bars, they combine with the brake levers. Not cheap though, and likely not compatible with the rear gears...I guess it's 5 or 6 gears? Converting would cost more than the bike's worth so you're probably best off restoring it to its former glory and riding it till you decide if it's the right size for you.

You'll love it. Then you'll get a bike that fits perfectly and you'll love it even more.

Good luck, any bits you need ask here, someone's bound to have one :angel:
 
OP
J

Jeags

Member
Location
North Wales
Ace, looks like a full restoration is in the mix then. I like the metallic purple on it at the moment so looks like I'll be riding in the purple rain! :okay:
 
Good morning,

The gear levers look in a slightly atypical position to me, mine are further up the down tube, closer to the head tube.

Maybe the previous owner was taller and found them easier to access in that position, but as you are new to downtube shifters it may be useful to know that moving them would be a reasonable thing to do.

Bye

Ian
 

T4tomo

Veteran
In the olden days the levers were on the down tube.
Even once combined gear and brake levers we ubiquitous, certain riders (cheating basteward Armstrong amongst them) often preferred to use a downtube friction shifter for the front derailleur. You can get the cage exactly where you want it and prevent any rub as the chain moves up and down the rear sprocket.
 

fossyant

Ride It Like You Stole It!
Location
South Manchester
I'm just refurbishing a Ribble 653 from the early 90's. It still looked great, but I fancied a colour change and sorting out a little bit of surface rust.

Get out the degreaser and give all the components a good scrub when 'off' the bike.
 

Dogtrousers

Kilometre nibbler
I think it looks like a fun project.

If it was mine I'd dismantle it completely, clean, regrease all the bearings. Lubricate pivots etc. New cables inner and outer, new brake blocks, tyres, inner tubes and bar tape. Possibly new chain.

Depending on your budget you could be less generous with the new bits. Depending on your available time/enthusiasm you could do less of the dismantling/cleaning/reassembling.

Looking at the photos I think it may have cottered cranks. Or perhaps my eyes are deceiving me. If it does there are a couple of recent threads on this subject.

https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/old-bike-restoration-cotter-pin-stuck.270584/
https://www.cyclechat.net/threads/raleigh-commando-crank-removal.270575/

Personally I'd shy away from modifying it and replacing things that aren't broken or worn out - eg moving the levers or changing the gearing. Not because I'm a stickler for period perfection but because what you end up with will be a bit of a mix and probably still won't be quite what you want. I speak from experience.
 
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