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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 10:06 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 9:18 am
Posts: 4
Location: Sydney, Australia
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A steel frame which had been used as a training bike. It had been painted with automotive paint so I don't know what it is...late 80's Japanese or Taiwanese I think. It had a "Tange" sticker on it but I don't know if that was original. It weighs 2.66kg.(frame and fork only) and most importantly, it fits me perfectly. I removed the paint and sanded it for a long, long time (!) and had it clear powder coated and the forks chrome plated.


The bits...
Dura Ace 7400 headset
D/A 7400 bottom bracket
D/A 7400 F/D
D/A 7400 seat post
D/A 7400 cranks and chain wheels
Shimano Crane R/D
Shimano 600 AX hubs, 36 hole Velocity Synergy rims, double wall, eyeletted
Shimano 600AX brakes
D/A 7400 brake levers
Nitto Randoneur bars, Velo Orange stitched on elkskin covers
Kusuki 1000 alloy stem, polished (found on a dumped bike)
Cambio Rino pedals
Brooks Swallow saddle
Nitto front rack and brass bell from velo Orange
Topeak stainless steel bidon cages
Kendo tan wall tyres

With the exception of the frame,Crane R/D and stem, all parts are new or NOS.

I like to put it up in the workstand, pull up my work stool, open a beer...and just sit and look at it.:D
I do ride it too though!


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 10:32 am 
The Guv'nor
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Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2005 11:19 pm
Posts: 23177
Location: Retrobike HQ
Great looking bike and build, be interesting to get a positive ID on the frame.

How is the clear powder holding. any closeups?[/i]


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 4:03 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Fri Jun 12, 2009 1:35 am
Posts: 380
Looks great, only thing I'm not sure about is the rack. Love the colours! (or the lack of colour on th frame :wink: )
Doesn't it bother you not knowing who made it? I have a frame that's been painted before I got it and although I'm sure it's nothing very special I would like to know what it is!


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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 3:42 am 
Devout Dirtbag
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 5:27 am
Posts: 100
Location: Sydney
That's a very nice bike Stevebaby.

I love the Elkhide bar wraps, the Swallow, and the Rhinos. One day I'm going to try and wrap Elkhide around double grooved Ergopower bars. Suspect it will be hard work though.

How are the pedals to ride on? Are they wide enough for long rides?


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 1:16 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 9:18 am
Posts: 4
Location: Sydney, Australia
The powder coating was something of an experiment, just because a few people told me that the frame would immediately rust if I did it. When I mentioned that to the powder coaters they, reasonably I thought, said that there was no difference between opaque and clear p/c and that it would be as durable as opaque. So far, it's held up well (after 6 months), but it's a weekend cruiser and doesn't get ridden in the rain...ever!
I went for powder coat after getting a couple of quote for a full chrome job. I'm glad I did, although it's a lot of hand work to prepare the frame. I had the frame chemically stripped, something I won't do again. The strippers obviously had used a wire wheel to remove the last traces of paint and it was a lot of work to sand out the scratches left by the wire wheel with wet and dry paper. Even so, the powder coat brought out some of the scratches not evident to the naked eye. If I were to do it again (when the memoties fade and the scars have healed), I'd be spending more time on hand sanding and possibly buffing. I know I can put a mirror finish on the backs of my chisels and plane blades, but a bike frame is a somewhat different proposition!
Originally, I planned to build a bike around a touring-type frame and fit it with alloy mudguards and front and rear constructeur racks, but I found this frame first, and it was in such good condition (apart from the respray) that I had to have it. It's a perfect fit for me and it felt light. I'm very happy with it, even if I don't know it's provenance. I do wonder occasionally what it was originally, but I think if I found out I may be tempted to do a full restore on it, and there are other bikes to be assembled...so many bikes, so little time!
The frame did have a "Tange Prestige" sticker on it, but I can't be certain if that was original. The lugs appear to be identical to those in an old Tange catalogue, and there were quite a few bikes imported into Australia under various brand names, "Repco" being one, but Tange tubesets were also used by local custom builders.
The elkhide bar wraps are very comfortable. It's beautiful stuff, very soft, and it feels wonderful in the hands. It took me about 2/ 3 hours to stitch them on all up, but i think the result is worth it.
I haven't ridden the bike more than 60 kms in a day, but the pedals are very comfortable for my rather wide feet, I have a set of Brooks straps planned to match the saddle and bars.
I also plan to replace the Uniglide freehub body with a later Hyperglide as Uniglide cassettes are becoming difficult to find. I'll probably go to a 7 speed, not that I really need an extra gear, but because 7 speed Hyperglides are easier for me to obtain. sadly, the beautiful looking AX brakes may not be a permanent feature unless I can work out how to modify brake pads to fit, as replacements are virtually non-existant. Fortunately, I have an old set of D/A sidepulls which I can use after polishing them.
Thanks for the complimentary comments. It means a lot from fellow enthusiasts, and it's very encouraging and inspiring.!
I'll try to get some closeup pics, So far they have been out of focus, but I'll persevere.
Steve


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 1:35 pm 
Devout Dirtbag
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Joined: Tue Jul 21, 2009 5:27 am
Posts: 100
Location: Sydney
Hey, Steve, where do you ride? A few of us meet up at Sydney Olympic Park every couple of months with our retro bikes. Others meet up at Centennial Park.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 2:37 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 18, 2009 9:18 am
Posts: 4
Location: Sydney, Australia
Toff wrote:
Hey, Steve, where do you ride? A few of us meet up at Sydney Olympic Park every couple of months with our retro bikes. Others meet up at Centennial Park.
I've been meaning to get to Olympic Park for a while. Something always seems to crop up, work, family committments etc.
Would that be the meetings advertised on bicycles.net.au retro biking? I keep an eye on them and hopefully I can do the Uniglide to Hyperglide conversion in time to make the next one. There's a chain skipping problem caused by a couple of broken teeth on the Uniglide cassette. I still ride the bike at least every week, but the range of gears is limited.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 2:42 pm 
Concours Judge
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Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2005 3:59 pm
Posts: 8171
Location: a proper EU country
Hi Steve

Very nice build

Spotted it on another forum already. Believe it was in a topic on AX brakes. Hope you will be able to find spare pads. I found some thanks to a cooperative forummember and through buying another pair of callipers :oops: If you ever try to modify pads to make them fitting: Please, let us know whether you managed it to make it working.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 10, 2009 4:56 pm 
Dirt Disciple
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Joined: Tue Aug 04, 2009 10:52 am
Posts: 78
Location: USA
My Japanese Star Bike had a Crane Rear Derailleur, Titlist front, great bike, I never totalled it but we happened to find a bump on the downtube heading into the fork and I was toldthat that might have violated the structural integrity in other words, it's been wrecked, don't ride it. It had tange forks too. I kept everything from it including the Sugino crank. There is a whole website on Shimano derailleurs and they seemed to be in love with the Titlist rear derailleur as the precursor of the Dura Ace line but at the bike co-op, they said Crane was the real great rear derailleur.

I'm under the impression that Japan had dozens and dozens if not hundreds of bicycle companies at the height of the boom so you may well have some Japanese bike but I'd be hard pressed to say it's one of the main brands. My Star was a great bike, I thought I had a unique brand and then, I saw one or two others out there.

Front rack from Velo Orange, I was just looking at those the other day... and they were a bit on the high end, though if really touring or lugging goods around would be worth it.

A lot of people are doing this stuff to make the bike standout, that's okay. I once even shellacked the tape on some handlebars. It felt good and worked out okay. Good gloves have probably taken me further though.

King Jupiter Japanese bikes, hexagonal tubing. Lots of innovation back then.


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