Thursday, January 10, 2013

1975 Peugeot UO-8 White 25" (December 2011)

Make: Peugeot
Model: UO-8
Year:  1975
Obtained: July 2011
Found: Bike Works 
Paid: $35.00

In the spring of 2010 I was in the university district of Seattle and a fixed up old 10 speed caught my eye, as they tend to, upon closer inspection it turned out to be a 70's Peugeot UO-8 in white with red accents.  I was really taken with the look and filed it away in my brain for later use.  In July of 2011 at the same time I found the 74 Grand Prix that I have written about I also found a 1975 white Peugeot UO-8 -now I could do my own red on white rebuild!
It was the usual story, musty, dusty and dirty but with some funky Mafac "half hood" brake levers, Racer brakes, "Aztec" lug cut outs and a head badge that reminded me of the buttons on a cigarette machine from the late 60s, you know the ones that were in the lobby of every restaurant in the US at the time.
Anyway I was really looking forward to working on this French beauty but after the debacle with the cottered crank on the Grand Prix I decided I would leave this alone until I had a proper tool to address the cotters.  As a result I didn't get to working on this bike until November. (1974 Catalog shot below couldn't find a 75)

I had initially though this might be a keeper but like the Takara it was a 25 inch frame and just too big for me.  Finally I had the proper tool and the time in November to tackle this beauty; I removed the "all original" (and pretty useless after 35 years) cables, housing, brake pads, dry rotted tires and tubes. And then got to work cleaning and waxing the frame, rebuilding the main bearings and getting the bike back to road worthiness.  Peugeot bikes of this era had simplex derailleurs and shifters, usually the front derailleur fails due to the use of a plastic clamp but in the case of this UO-8 the FD was fine, it was rear that would not work properly.  That was really the only real issue I had with the bike and it was solved with a vintage Shimano Titlist in nice shape and of about the same era.
With my new Cotter press the cotters practically fell over themselves getting out of the crank so I could rebuild the bottom bracket and clean up the crankset.
With some gentle scrubbing and cleaning the rubber half hoods and lever protectors came out very nice.
And my vision of a white Peugeot UO-8 with red accents became a reality.

The red walled tires might have been a bit over the top but what the heck I liked the look and the bike sold fast to a nice tall young man at the UW.  A really good resource for old Peugeot info, especially dating them, is   By dating I mean figuring out when the bike was made, because taking a bike out on a date would be just wrong and odd....right? 

Little did I know that this purchase was only the first in what would be a long line of UO-8's for me.  Allez Allez!



  1. I don't know how I feel about those red-walls...but on my murdered out all satin black SLT with the red cables, it might be worthy of a date. Plus next time I'm wrapping the bars with the Cinelli black cork with the red flecks.

    What you said about how a problem became a non-problem with the use of the proper tool is a comment on something I discovered early on while working on my bicycle and writing about it; bicycle repair reflects life-at-large and there are bigger lessons to be learned while tweaking Old Steel.

    Good work!


  2. The right tool does make the job much easier, although in reading my 10 speeds website and watching the bikeman4u videos on youtube there are a number of ways to get around not having a bike specific tool. I have seen a number of ways to remove cotters on the web without going the more expensive route I took as well. I have no regrets about buying the bikesmith tool and I have gotten enough use out if it now that its just about paid for itself....just about. I agree there are lessons to be learned working on old steel, as I mentioned to Hugh the other day, the 3 P's; Patience, Perseverance and Profanity.

    Tailwinds Brother

  3. I like the red walls, makes an ordinary bike a show-stopper. Very nice!
    I have a soft spot for Peugeot bikes. It was my High school and College commuter until stolen.
    I went to that retro site, I really like the brochures from the 70's. I did not realize until reading Sheldon Brown that a bunch of these were sold here in the 70's (a billion in his words). There should be a bunch around....I might start to look for one to rebuild

  4. Thanks Jim, I was really struck by the color combo when I first saw it and like the way it turned out on this bike. I don't think you will have to look far to find a Peugeot just do a search on craigslist and you will probably find plenty. The U0-8 is very often described as a "Record Du Monde" because that is written on the tubing but it just refers to the fact that a Peugeot bike was ridden to a world record of some kind at some point. I do most of my bike shopping at my local bike "kitchen" co-op and I picked up 3 U0-8's in a matter of months. I have a Peugeot Course (U0-10) in the work queue I am looking forward to completing.

  5. I have the same ,a bit ruffed up a little. I where can I buy decals for for mu white U0-8 Peugeot. thank you

    1. Hello Medemoon, thanks for stopping by, while I have never replaced decals my friend Hugh over at recommends Velocals. Check out their UO-8 set at