1994 Marin 'Time Warp' Bear Valley SE - Now Completed.... 20km Shake Down Test Ride

abr303

Retro Guru
Having never owned a Marin in all my years I chanced upon this up for sale locally and from the initial photos, looked in surprisingly good condition and quite fancied it. A few messages where exchanged and I arranged to view it and see if it was all it was cracked up to be..... well I wasn't disappointed. A very original low use example in fantastic condition so a price was agreed and the purchase was made. The current owner had kept on top of it during his ownership but admitted to having not used it much. He had purchased it from a friend whose son had bought it new back in the day but had out grown it pretty quickly so ended up being sat under a sheet in his garage for 20 years unused......! :)The current owner was making room in the garage as his son had bought a new 29er full suss and wasn't happy how much room it was taking up so the Bear Valley had to go...:) I couldn't wait to get it home and give it a proper check over and see if it really was as good as it looked and wasted no time in starting to strip it down and give it a service........

So we have a 1994 15.5" (c-c) Marin Bear Valley SE with Special Edition STX groupset, original Marin saddle in great condition, original Marin Lite tyres again in great condition with no perishing of the rubber and bags of tread left and the original foam grips very much intact, finished off with Marin Lite bars, stem and seat post. So really apart from needing to sort a few cables out and the only visible wear to the frame was some worn/missing decals on the top tube and some very light cable rub it checked out really well.

On with the strip down.....
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Removed the forks and on initial inspection the headset bearings were sweet as but a clean and fresh grease to keep things going nicely was the order of the day.....
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Next was to check out the hubs..... they didn't disappoint either, I mean, check out the cones..... drive side rear like new too 👍 Again all cleaned and re-greased with the hubs now running buttery smooth.
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The only thing I was a little concerned about was after taking a few measurements that the front might be a little short in terms of reach for me so the stock stem might need to go a longer stem instead. You can imagine how chuffed I was and when after a little search online I managed to find this.......

A nice NOS Marin Lite stem exactly matching the original but now in a more favourable 135mm length :cool:
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Also wasn't too keen that the original Marin Lite 560mm bars had been trimmed down somewhat and were a bit too narrow for my liking and scored again online with some more Marin Lite goodness..... Another like for like match for the bars so I was happy with that, NOS 560mm Marin Lite bars :)
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More updates to follow.......👍
 

abr303

Retro Guru
A little progress on cleaning up a few parts that have dulled a little over the years but have come up well :) .
STX Special Edition chainset with rings showing little miles....
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Marin Lite bar ends given a spruce up though are a little scuffed in places which is to be expected, will do nicely.
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The top tube was something I'd been debating over as it was the only area where the Bear Valley was slightly let down cosmetically. We're only talking decals here so nothing serious but given the rest of the bike was in such good condition it let the rest of the bike down. Ideally keeping the original decals would take priority normally and after getting in touch with Gil @ Retrodecals he didn't have replacements on file so I decided to try dnfive and they came up trumps on the right shade of silver for the lettering and grey for the shadow part.....

Might be being picky here but the lettering was not majorly bad but I took the plunge and went with replacements.
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I was impressed as you can't tell they're not original so I think the decision was the right one 👍
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NOS Marin Lite 135mm stem and NOS bars now on and fitted. All ready now for cabling which will commence when I get a chance next.......👍
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More to follow soon.......:)
 

abr303

Retro Guru
Not quite got round to cabling up just yet but chuffed to have now sourced a like for like seat post as the old one was a bit scratched up along the entire length and my ocd just couldn't handle it :LOL:

Old post....
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New....
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Found the original owners details stamped on the bottom of the old post....... Any relation to Tim do we think?? :LOL:
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The original Marin saddle has faired really well given the year bar the odd nick on the edges and a bit of surface corrosion to the saddle rails so decided to give it a little refresh before mating it up to the new post.....

'93 date stamp...
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Will get round to cabling up soon when time allows and finish setting it all up..... more updates and pics to follow soon....
 
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Morton Frankfire

Retro Newbie
This looks RAD!! I’m bidding on a bear vally at the moment and it’s more bits than bike.
I’ll be following this as I’ve never restored a bike before and thought I’d try this as a project.
 

abr303

Retro Guru
Thanks MF
It can get very addictive I can tell you. Something very satisfying about bringing old bikes back to life or simply getting them back to a nice standard as is the case with my Bear Valley. It’s coming up a treat 👍
 

abr303

Retro Guru
So got the cabling sorted and set everything up...... only thing needed will be a proper quick release or seat post binder bolt as it's a make shift one for now. I will compile a spec list shortly but I couldn't wait to get out for test ride....... Miss Spd's so that will be my 'to do' next on the list but a great 20km shake down test ride for sure....

Warning, pic heavy content coming right up..... :)

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Thanks for tuning in :)👍
 

abr303

Retro Guru
That's really nice! You were lucky to find one that condition, but I really must take my hat off to you, to go the extra mile.
Chapeau.
Many thanks albash82, it was a lucky find and felt it was well worth addressing the small areas that were let down as the BV was in such good condition anyway. I really like how well it now looks 👍
 
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