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PostPosted: Thu Jun 30, 2011 9:16 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sat Jun 18, 2011 7:19 pm
Posts: 92
Location: Scottish Borders
This is a story about sentimental value.

This is the bike that I’ve had since new in 1986. A 531c Raleigh Gran Tour frameset, in 54cm size, it’s quite a rare beast based on my Googling. It took me on several UK and continental tours and thousands of miles of commuting. Then a knee injury meant it was hung up from around 1995 until now, some 16 years later.

The knee has been okayish in recent years, which has seen me cycling again but mostly off road (me, an old roadie, gasp!).

It’s taken me a wee while to realise that my move to the Scottish Borders a few years ago has put me slap bang in the middle of some of the most deserted, scenic and varied cycling roads I could hope for, in addition to it being superb MTB country. So the old road steed has come out of hibernation and I’m quite excited about it!

I’d built it up with Shimano 600, 105, Gippiemme, Weinmann and Suntour amongst other things. The wheels I spent big money (for me) back then, Shimano 600 hubs with Mavic MA40s and DBC spokes.

Its condition is as you’d expect an essentially neglected bike to be, with plenty of surface rust peppering the chrome and around the lugs, seized cables and that sort of thing, but amazingly (because it’s been hung by its saddle) the wheels are as true as the day they were made and it’s all quite salvageable.

This will be my only road bike and I plan to invest some money in renovating it. Sacrilege it may be, but I plan to use modern components where it’s applicable. However, I’m more than happy to stick to the “old fashioned” non-indexed downtube shifters, 7-speed rear cassette and Weinmann centre pulls, because there’s nothing that modern stuff can offer me that is significantly better and I’d like to keep it retro as far as I can.

Work so far has been as follows.

New rear mech. The old 105 was dead and anyway I needed a long version for the granny cog. Sad to say my budget would stretch only to Shimano Sora, but it seems perfectly ok.

New 7-speed rear cassette to replace the 6-block. I went for 13-34 to give me a short gear for the steep hills round here but now regret it since I changed the 42/52 with a compact. I may go 13-25 at a later date.

New chainset and bb to replace the stripped-threaded Gipiemme. I decided to go new after trying and failing to get an old Stronglight 80 or even an old Campy compact, so I got a Stronglight Impact and matching bb. Seems light enough and ok if a bit rough in the casting department on the reverse faces. It’ll do for now, I just wanted the bike on the road.

Shimano SPDs the same as my MTB, to replace the quills and clips.

New mudguards.

General servicing – new cables, stripped and lubed hubs etc.


If the bike (and my knees!) hold up for a while longer, I plan to get it repainted at Bob Jacksons. The colour is decided on but currently top secret. I’m not planning to replicate the Raleigh identity, not least because the chroming would need a mortgage and the frame is just not that good.

I love this bike. It’d be great to think I could get a second 25 years out of it. And out of me!

Image


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 01, 2011 2:35 pm 
Retro Guru

Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 10:51 am
Posts: 254
Thats a lovely looking Raleigh.

I think it's great that you are putting life back into it, I hope you enjoy it.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 04, 2011 9:55 am 
Retro Guru

Joined: Wed Nov 24, 2010 4:38 pm
Posts: 1469
Location: The Lovely Lincolnshire Wolds and by the sea in Sussex
Haven't seen a Gran Tour for many years...lovely, good to hear it(and you)are having a rebirth!

I should do similiar with my from new 1984 and 1986 Raleighs - Corsa and SBDU Service de Courses.

"Bike for Life". Love it, great double meaning too.

Roadking.


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 Post subject: Raleigh Gran Tour
PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 3:02 pm 
Newbie

Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 2:21 pm
Posts: 2
Location: Aberystwyth
Lovely example, will try to get photos of mine on here. Spent ages trying to find info on this bike!


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 Post subject: Raleigh Gran Tour
PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 3:02 pm 
Newbie

Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 2:21 pm
Posts: 2
Location: Aberystwyth
Love the bike, I initially built up a Raleigh Record '84 having always wanted one as I child. As I was scouring parts for it, I came across an ad for a Raleigh 531 in poor condition, but great looking non the less. After picking it up for £50! I set about trying to find out what bike it was to start refurbing it. Eventually after ages on the net, I discovered it was a Gran Tour 1984, Raleigh lightweight divisions off the peg frame (The decal was missing on the bike!) Unfortunately the paint work was pretty poor so I decided to strip and respray it myself. Decals where unfortunately not all replaceable but I got what I could from H Lloyd Cycles, then built the bike up with parts of the same era as the frame, 1984. Most of the parts I got from ebay or robbed of the raleigh record, plus Hilary Stone and Campyoldy. Love the finished look, think The Gran Tour is a stunning frame, certainly garners a lot of attention out on the road! Anyway here's how I spec'd it:

Frame: Raleigh Gran Tour Reynolds 531C –Raleigh Lightweight Division 1984
Hubs: Campagnolo Record Large Flange
Rims: Mavic M40
Tyres: Continental GP Attack & Force
Freewheel: Regina ORO 13-26T, Gold
Crankset: Sugino GP 52/36, Gold
Pedals: Look PP 76 Carbon
BB: Campagnolo Record (With Sugino 126mm Spindle)
Chain: Regina ORO, Gold
Derailleurs: Campagnolo Super Record
Shifters: Campagnolo Super Record Pantographed
Brake Levers: Mafac Spidel, Gold
Brakes: Mafac Competition Front, 2000 Rear, Gold
Brake Cables: Animal Illegal Linear Brake Cable, Gold
Seat Post: Miche Aero
Saddle: San Marco Rolls
Head Set: Cambio Rino 1”
Stem: Cinelli XA
Bars: SR Road Champion
Bar Tape: Brooks Leather
Bottle Cage: Cobra, Gold
Size, Weight: Frame size; Center BB – Top Tube 22 ½“. Weight; 23.6lb
Image[/url]
Image[/url]
[/img]http://i118.photobucket.com/albums/o109/rhif7/Raleigh%20Gran%20Tour%20531C/RaleighGranTour9.jpg[/img][/url]
Image[/url]
[/img]http://i118.photobucket.com/albums/o109/rhif7/Raleigh%20Gran%20Tour%20531C/RaleighGranTour6.jpg[/img][/url]

Here's a URL for the Album, couldn't work out how to get the photos on here :(
http://s118.photobucket.com/albums/o109 ... ur%20531C/


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 12:17 pm 
Retro Guru
User avatar

Joined: Wed Jul 27, 2011 12:46 pm
Posts: 962
Location: Montpellier, France
That's really lovely - you can't beat sentimental value in a bike.

It's only sacrilege if there's a hacksaw involved. Enjoy it and use it, you can't go wrong. Here's hoping the bike lasts at least as long as your knees do!


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 09, 2012 2:38 pm 
Dirt Disciple

Joined: Sat Jun 18, 2011 7:19 pm
Posts: 92
Location: Scottish Borders
rhif7, what a lovely example of the Gran Tour.

I feel something of a fraud as mine has recently been blasted and painted, erm, pink!

In my defence the frame was badly rusted in the forks and rear stays and needed urgent work. I didn't have the time, cash nor the inclination to do an original resto job, hence the colour change.

In its new livery mine is doing over 400-500 miles a month commuting and training, so it's well loved and well used!

It was a lovely bike in its original chrome etc and it's great to see a good example like yours.


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