Unique 1993 Dynatech Randonneur 531ST? SB9748

Crusader

Dirt Disciple
** The original text below was before I discovered this Raleigh was from the SBDU **

I believe it is one of the last 1993 Reynolds 531ST Raleigh Randonneur/Royal frames out-shopped from the Raleigh SPU in a Dynatech livery. My guess is that either an employee or a friend of an employee wanted a non standard Randonneur with a completely different spec. Note though that the Raleigh imprints at the top of the seat stays are missing, but I've seen this on very late Randonneurs too. Build quality and alignment appears to be very good.

The prior owner (not the original owner) had no idea what he had and thought the horrific high foam content saddle was of greater note than the Campag hubs. He was also the sort that would never clean a bike. He did know the bike had some value though.

All the kit on it dated to 1993 apart from the Campag Record / Mavic A519 rims which I cannot accurately date. Rims have plenty of life left and it really doesn't look like the bike has been used for serious touring. It had Cinelli Eubius drops and 1A stem. The drops were not a good shape to my mind so I converted it to flat bars. I left the Suntour downtube levers but didn't fancy using them with a triple which was a rare Exage ES M520 (exactly the same as an LX M560 but with a different finish), so I decided to substitute an older 600EX 48/38T Biopace double which is almost NOS. The Campag hubs were smooth so no immediate need to strip them, same applied to the Campag headset. The seat stem is a 27.0 polished steel Proponent that has evidently aged well. I like the Shimano LX polished brake shoes which you don't see too often.

The original freewheel was a Megarange which I instantly took a disliking to on visual grounds. I stripped and cleaned it and then identified it as a HG50-7 of superior design to your usual Shimano offering and very much rated by Sheldon and quite a few tandem riders apparently.. I've never yet seen another on Ebay.


New Tortec mudguards
New KMC Chain
New 700x28 Vittoria Randonneur tyres and new inner tubes
New CNC machined Tranz X handlebar stem
New carbon wrapped 2014 alu Tranz X handlebars
New Ritchey grips
New all alloy Ahead/quill stem adaptor.
New rear brake cable.
New Sunrace 13-28T freewheel


It's a handsome machine and it rides well, but whether it's a long term keeper, I'm not sure. The front 38T / rear 28T combo is geared a bit too high for the local hills in the Peak District, but I don't want to change the build.


If any Raleigh Dynatech experts have a different theory about this bike, I'd be please to hear about it.
 

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peetee

Senior Retro Guru
Re: Unique 1993 Dynatech Randonneur 531ST

At last! Another brazed Raleigh Dyna-Tech! These are strange and curious besties because the Dyna-Tech name was predominantly used on the bonded framesets. I have one, a Cyclo-cross model. It had the same down tube and head tube decals which i have since removed.
I hate to throw a spanner at your concise specification but I suspect the frame tubing is Reynolds 708 not 531. The top tube appears oversized ie the same diameter as the seat and down tube; 28.6mm not the 25.4 of the 531 tube sets. It’s a great tube set and IMHO superior to 531 for stronger riders and loaded touring because it creates a more rigid main triangle.
 

Crusader

Dirt Disciple
Re:

Very well spotted sir (I hadn't !). The top tube is an oversized 28.6, but I don't think it is 708 as that should be standard 25.4 anyway. As an owner of a 708 and a K2 by Reynolds, I know to look down the seat tube and there are no signs of fluting. The top tube is therefore likely to be a non-set oversized 531 DB 0.9/0.6, or a 731. It is of course possible that the wrong top tube was used and this induced them to give it another identity? I'm sure the seat post is original and given that it is 27.0 I still think the other tubes are 531ST. It feels like the seat tube might take a 27.2, but I think it would be too tight to be practical.

Could you perhaps post a picture of yours for comparison...
 

peetee

Senior Retro Guru
Re:

It’s unlikely they made a mistake with the oversized tube because it wouldn’t fit standard head and seat lugs. 708 Touristique did have a 28.6 top tube and was used by Raleigh in their later Randonneur frames. There is another 708 tube set called Classic and I believe that has a more conventional 25.4 top tube - it certainly had when Peugeot used it for a race frame. It’s possible it also has lighter gauges too but finding info on this is beyond my ken.
It’s quite possible yours is a special order. I suspect mine is as it was previously used by a cyclo-cross team.
This is mine (decals are a layer addition and unrelated to its builder):
 

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Crusader

Dirt Disciple
Re:

Good point: my 708 is a Classic and I forgot that Raleigh's 708 Touristique had a bigger top tube. I take your point about the lugs, so it must have been a special order as I first thought, unless it was some sort of development frame to test alongside the 708 Touristique keeping all the tube sizes the same. I will have a look at the serial numbers on the BB shell. Spoke holders on the right would reinforce the idea of it being a 531 mix I believe.

Nice to see your 708 Cross.
 

Crusader

Dirt Disciple
BB shell stamps

This should throw some light on the matter:

SB9748 on the drive side of the shell

SHOW58
SBPER RAN

Looks like a show/prototype bike with a very late SB number. Numbers are stamped small not large.

From the: My Ti-Raleigh SB4059 blog site (hope he doesn't mind..):
 

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peetee

Senior Retro Guru
Re:

Convention dictates that Raleigh branded frames were regular, brazed frames and Dyna-Tech were bonded. I wonder if your bike and mine are introducing a forgotten chapter in the history of Raleigh? Perhaps there was a time when they were undecided as to how to use the Dyna-Tech branding. For a short while it might have been suggested as the label for the bonded frames and Special Products. The professional race team Castorama rode Raleigh and some of their bikes appeared to be bonded and others brazed so there was already some flexibility in the branding going on in the company.
 

Crusader

Dirt Disciple
Re:

Good spot.

Yes, deliberately. I find it a more sympathetic angle for my arms and wrists and it gives a little more length which I like on this frame.

I do this on some of my other bikes too and I really don't care for the wrist/forearm angle that the 'proper' way promotes.

Consider also that with the drops that were originally fitted, the bar curves away from the rider too..
 
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