Charlie has a 20 year-old Hybrid Diamond Back Approach, near as I can tell its a 1995 model -thanks bikepedia.com- in Teal. The bike has been under some cover but stored outside so it was in need of a dose of TLC. First some clean up.
|Factory Original 700x41c Avenir Lakeside tires|
|Sure, you could ride on them...|
|But not a good idea|
Taking care of the bike was pretty straight forward as I was looking to do some weather proofing and basic maintenance not a frame up rehab. I gave it following TLC:
- Washed the grime of the bike and then wiped it down with armor all wipes.
- Attacked rust where I found it and then applied a light coat of 3 in 1 oil on the affected parts, not a perfect fix but it will delay the rust process.
- Replaced the worn out tires and tubes with a new set of tubes and some used but in good shape Panaracer Pasela tourguard 700x35c tires I had in the parts bin.
- Since the front tire had been flat water had gotten into the rim and caused some rust and corrosion on the aluminum so I went to work on that with the dremel and brass wire brush
- Removed and regreased the seatpost and stem, the two areas I always worry about seizing on old 10 speeds.
- Cleaned and lubed the chain and rear cassette - yep its a 7 speed cassette hub, probably one of the first years they used a cassette instead of a freewheel hub.
- Checked the SIS shifting which was fine -not a fan of grip shifters but these worked well.
- Lightly sanded the brake pads and checked the brakes for proper alignment - had to make some small changes to the rear brake to get it not to rub. I am also not a fan of cantis but these were pretty easy to dial in.
Since this bike doesn't get much use I was going for serviceable rather than doing a total refurb for a bike that was just going to go back out the porch for storage. My friend, however, has just lost 40 pounds and started running again so the bike might figure into his activity now. I made some suggestions about potential upgrades/replacements if he decides to do some riding. And that process got me thinking....
The Hybrid bike is an odd "neither fish nor fowl" product of the 1990's, not really a road bike and not really a mountain bike but something of a mix, well Hybrid of the two. Since they are not lugged they weren't really on my bike radar but getting up close and personal with one I realized they could make an awesome commuter and I know alot folks use them as such. This example is a no-nonsense mix of CroMo, Tange and "High Ten" (aka gas pipe) steel tubing.
Also since they probably spent 30 seconds putting the frame design in a envelope to send to China they can put "designed in the USA" on it.
But I digress, back the commuting idea. You have a serviceable steel frame, curved front fork and a TON of room for tires which equals a great commuter platform IMHO. It also has 130mm rear dropout spacing so you could upgrade to 8 or 9 speeds if you were so inclined. The nice thing about 7 speed stuff is you can get a new SRAM cassette and chain combo for about $25 bucks before tax and shipping. As you can see below the 700x35c tires I put on the bike barely make a dent in the available room, I think this bike could accommodate 700x50s without fenders and 700x40s (or bigger) with fenders.
I have plenty of other projects in the queue but "find a mid 90's hybrid to create monster commuter" has just found a way onto the list of future projects. I hope you enjoyed this diversion from the norm, should have some progress on the Peugeot Course soon. Until then please ride.smile and repeat.
|All cleaned up and ready to go|