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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 7:09 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:49 pm
Posts: 8
Location: Washingborough, Lincs
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Hi –

This is my first post – so please go easy on me! I’ve been a cyclist for many years now and for the last 7, I’ve been well served by a Claud Butler Olympus XT – the ubiquitous Taiwanese Alu 7005 frame coupled with some half-decent components. Reliable and . . . . sensible. Anyway, for stress-relief and exercise, running has always been my forte. However, a long-running (no pun intended) knee niggle has become something more, so the cycling started to become more than just a way of moving around! In this time, the Claud had become a commuter – Blackburn rack, Karrimor panniers, Schwalbe Marathons etc etc – all very sensible! I wanted a cheap bike that I could take out for quick blasts at the weekend, mild XC stuff, something that would take a few knocks. The only problem – budget! I noticed that a lot of the big stores are selling bikes around £70; seemed a budget had been set! A few evenings Googling found such terms as ‘BSO’ and the Asda / fork scenario. It’s been a while since I’ve picked up a bike mag, but I know enough about the differences between ‘cost’ and ‘value’; I’m also aware that the two don’t always exist in a relationship with the other. So second hand, then! And that’s when I stumbled across this excellent web-site – full of truly wonderful builds and bikes that I remember lads at school lusting after (I’m in my mid 30s). I was interested to realise that what lies behind the concept of the majority of builds is the security of relatively simple designs – so much less to go wrong. I was hooked and decided that a 90s Raleigh / Claud Butler et al would be the way to go – cheaper than the Marins and Speshes that pop up every now and then. Probably British and probably a model that someone once owned at school. Put it this way – if a good condition Lizard had popped up in the Bournemouth area, I’d have snapped it up.

Disclaimer: I am more than happy to be corrected in any shape or form! I’ve only just found out (2 weeks ago) that there was a Raleigh Cycles of America, so any info that other members have about his bike – please let me know!

A couple of days scouring the ‘Bay for a second hand sub £70 steed revealed this Technium - £40 BIN and located in Southampton. This was slightly more exotic than I’d hoped for! A quick phone call revealed that there was no play in the cranks, no cracks in the frame and that both wheels were true. All information was correct and it was a delight inspecting the bike in the light of day. She’s been used – no doubt - but not much. Red paint peering through the patina of dirt. The grime / dirt / oil was dust dry – more powdercoated than smeared. Front tyre was a Ritchey skinwall – cracked beyond use, but plenty of tread. The Dia Compe brake blocks (now landfill) were original, I assume, but had not been worn away so much. They had the consistency, appearance and stopping ability of pumice. Pure speculation – but the bike looked as if it had been used for the first couple of years and then simply shelved, mud and all. I’m going to put my neck on the line and say that it is a 1989 model – MOMBAT’s Raleigh entry has the 1990 models as having the rear brake cable mounted externally. Mine runs through the top tube.

I’ve spent a further total of £20 on her - (so, £60 in total; under budget – first time in my life; as an aside, I also have an expensive hi-fi habit and two daughters. I’m skint) new Ritchey brake blocks, Ritchey WCS grips, inner tubes and rim tapes. The Tioga factory XCs, whilst not period were the stock tyres off my Claud Butler before commuter-ville set in! Likewise, the Crud catcher was pre-Blackburn for the Claud! Same for the DMR V8s. In addition, the X-Lite ski bar ends were part of a two set ‘deal’ on eBay a while back – silver for the Claud and the black for the garage! Other than that, AFAIK, she is completely stock. Longish stem, but suits my gibbon arm / freak physique perfectly. Araya rims (still with white / blue stickers) Dia Compe XCE brakes (construction date Nov 1988), Suntour XCM 3040 groupo. Indexed on the right and friction on the left. After a thorough cleaning of all drive train components and tightening of the rear cable, she shifts perfectly. The new Ritchey pads also work well with the Dia Compes in stopping her competently. Not as crisp as the Cane Creek Direct Curves on my Claud, but pretty good, nevertheless. No complete re-build necessary – just a few evenings of following advice from this wonderful site – wire wool where necessary, car shampoo followed by t-cut for the frame and a squirt or many of Muc-Off for the running gear. Oh, and £1.40 spent at Hobbycraft for a ‘tinette’ of Humbrol enamel. If you get too close, you can see where I’ve applied it with what looks like a blunt stick. Needless to say, I didn’t! There was a bit of rust in couple of areas (but obviously not on the alu!); Wire wool, car zinc treatment with a few overcoats of the Humbrol has banished all signs. Likwise, the wool and T-cut worked wonders on the rims. (Not trying to plug anything / one here, but being on a budget, all supplies were Wilkinson’s own, including the stockinette used to finish off the frame – a fraction of the cost of branded stuff. Don’t know what other readers think of Wilkinson’s . . . . .?) Out of interest, the sticker at the bottom of the downtube informs us that the bike is from Bicycle Village of Columbia. A long way from Bournemouth!

Bank holiday Monday saw me, bike and a pal (and his bike) set off from Bournemouth. For those of you who know Dorset / south west, we slid, skied, skated to Blandford Forum and back, via Badbury Rings and Wimborne – a lovely 35 mile route (especially in the summer). The Raleigh coped magnificently – a very comfortable ride although deceptively fast when the going allows. She feels quick to follow wherever she’s pointed and whilst Nottingham Raleigh’s of this era have sometimes been described on this site as having a ‘relaxed’ geometry, I’m not sure the same can be said of this bike. Not aggressive; responsive being the word, perhaps?

Having scoured the German ‘91 Raleigh catalogue (like many reading this), the Technium is 4th of 5 in the hierarchy. MOMBAT, accordingly, positions The Heat lower down in the range. The use of the Suntour groupo and Dia Compe brakes supports this. So, I have a question that I’m burning to find an answer to – where and how in the Nottingham Raleigh range, does this model correspond (price wise and performance wise)? Is such a comparison available? If I had stood in the Raleigh dealership in ‘89 and expressed an interest in this model and had asked the dealer what else I could get for the money from this side of the pond, what would his answer have been? (As an aside, my parents did stand in a Raleigh dealership in ’89 – I received a Raleigh Team Banana for my 13th birthday. Couldn’t touch the floor and the Weinnman brakes, didn’t. Another story.)

I know this is a modest build compared to the Chills and Peaks. However, there was so little evidence of the Heat on the web, so maybe my posting might provide a little more info on this particular model for anyone searching for details. I’d be delighted to hear from other Technium owners with their own insights and comments. Likewise, I’d be delighted to answer any questions regarding the bike.

My sincere thanks to all those responsible to those who set up and maintain this wonderful web-site and forum – it may well encourage me to spend more money when funds allow!

All the best, Matt.


Further photos:

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 8:50 pm 
Newbie

Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:49 pm
Posts: 8
Location: Washingborough, Lincs
Sorry - sticker informs us that Bicycle Village is in Colorado.

And not Columbia.

Not sure what I must have been smoking . . . or snorting . . .


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 10:19 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2007 1:26 pm
Posts: 3752
Great write up there 8)

You have done well with this one, looks as good as new, the techniums were available in the uk through Raleigh, I remember seeing them in the LBS windows. I think there was a premium paid to own a technum which is why they are fairly scarse , Great bike you have there and indeed a bargain.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 10:39 pm 
BoTM Winner / retrobike rider
BoTM Winner / retrobike rider
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Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2008 8:24 pm
Posts: 5667
Location: Dorset
Welcome to the site!
I'm in Bournemouth myself so expect to now be badgered into coming out on the next retro ride :D


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 8:45 am 
Newbie

Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:49 pm
Posts: 8
Location: Washingborough, Lincs
Gravy Monster - thanks for the info and the kind comments. I can imagine it would have been one very lucky lad who would have received a Technium for his birthday present BITD!

Makster - would love to come out on a retro ride. I did think about buying one of the Retrobike stickers and proudly displaying it somewhere on my frame on the slight chance that it would encourage (in)sane conversation with like-minded individuals!


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 2:11 pm 
BoTM Winner / retrobike rider
BoTM Winner / retrobike rider
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Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2008 8:24 pm
Posts: 5667
Location: Dorset
Ripley's Cat wrote:
Gravy Monster - thanks for the info and the kind comments. I can imagine it would have been one very lucky lad who would have received a Technium for his birthday present BITD!

Makster - would love to come out on a retro ride. I did think about buying one of the Retrobike stickers and proudly displaying it somewhere on my frame on the slight chance that it would encourage (in)sane conversation with like-minded individuals!


Drop me a pm if you're interested in coming out. I try to ride most weekends. I may also have a spare retroBIKE sticker kicking about somewhere ;¬)


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 10, 2011 11:16 pm 
West Midlands Deputy AEC
West Midlands Deputy AEC
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Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2009 7:30 pm
Posts: 3829
Location: Suffolk
Welcome fellow Technium owner. Great bikes these and yours looks absolutely mint. ;)

They ride really well - enjoy it :D


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:26 am 
retrobike rider
retrobike rider
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Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2007 12:31 pm
Posts: 2482
Location: ManchestOr
I really like that, its a forward thinking retro, best of both worlds. Well done, first big step towards retro riding. It looks like a bike worth caring for and investing in. Look out on our for sale section and ebay and bike jumbles etc for nice retro parts to keep it looking great and period. Are you planning to add to the fleet, or any work on this bike?


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 12:09 pm 
Newbie

Joined: Sun Jan 09, 2011 5:49 pm
Posts: 8
Location: Washingborough, Lincs
makster: pm sent!

nevadasmith: Thank you! Actually, your Peak was one of the few bikes that confirmed that I should buy my model - a truly wonderful build, yours. I think your bike is what mine wishes to be when it grows up! You must have been over the moon when you found the NOS frame. Just out of interest, how does the ride compare to the Zaskar?

reanimation: Thank you - this is an addictive game to have found myself within! Present mode of thinking is to enjoy the bike pretty much in this configuration. Look after it and ensure that if any parts need replacing, they'll be sympathetic to the age and aesthetics of the bike. However, I am on the lookout for a higher spec model to join the stable! As an aside, I've still a few 'workshop' lessons to attend re. certain aspects of bike maintenance (anything involving the words 'bottom', 'bracket' and 'hub' and I'm sprinting to my LBS!) I love the look of the Techniums and would certainly consider investing in a Peak or Chill later on in the game, preferably with those Tange big forks! There's certainly no shortage of inspiration on this site, though - the Oranges seem to be catching my attention, also!


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 4:30 pm 
West Midlands Deputy AEC
West Midlands Deputy AEC
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Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2009 7:30 pm
Posts: 3829
Location: Suffolk
Ripley's Cat wrote:
nevadasmith: Thank you! Actually, your Peak was one of the few bikes that confirmed that I should buy my model - a truly wonderful build, yours. I think your bike is what mine wishes to be when it grows up! You must have been over the moon when you found the NOS frame. Just out of interest, how does the ride compare to the Zaskar?


Thanks! :D embrassingly :oops: I haven't ridden the Zaskar - it was my first project and lead me to this site, needless to say that spawned other projects on the way and the Zas' is in the garage roof with a few tubes of Autosol waiting for some attention. The Peak rides really well though - very balanced and feels quick.

Get some pics of yours up on the Dyna Tech appreciation thread!


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