Saturday, September 13, 2014

In the work-stand: Early 1970's Torpado Alpha

Now that I am done with the campus bike project for my Niece its time to move onto the next bike in the queue while the weather is still nice.  I wrote about the Torpado here back in January, since my options were to work on a complete bike or build one up from a frame-set, old Motobecane Mirage, I went with the complete bike.

I've noticed that on last few projects that I have jumped right in without much thought to whether I had all the parts I needed, so for this project I decided to give my parts bin and the bike a careful going over.  That helped me realize that I did not need to order brake pads, but that I was out of new chains and 27" tubes.  It was pretty obvious I would need new tires.
"All Original"
One benefit of a careful inspection was I discovered something about my brake levers.
The sharp eyed will notice that the levers are not the same.  One is fairly nice with a built in quick release.
The other is a converted "safety lever" model and is a bit Rube Goldberg to my eye.
Call me anal but it would bug me to finish the bike with this set up, fortunately I have a nice set of drilled Weinmann's that I can use instead of the existing set.

However there is one issue, ain't that always the case!, the drilled levers have no clamps for the handlebars so I am hoping I can cannibalize the mismatched set to make this work.

Giving this bike a careful once over also made me realize I would need to change how I route the brake cables.  Normally I like to run the the right lever to the rear brake but on this bike there is internal routing for the rear brake cable on the left side of the top tube so using my normal routing would mean some messy cable routing, so for this rebuild I am going to run the left lever to the rear brake (which I believe is how motorcyclist run their brakes) to keep things tidy.

So now that I have things scoped out and all the parts assembled (I hope) the next step is to take this Italian beauty down to the frame and start the rebuild, and find out what I have missed ;-) 

Until next time; Ride.Smile.Repeat.

Monday, September 1, 2014

1977 Raleigh Record LTD Mixte- Campus bike rebuild Part IV- Finished!

Well after what seems like way too long I finally got my Nieces' campus bike finished.  And I am glad to report that after all the trouble shooting I did yesterday that the running of cables and dialing in of brakes and shifting when pretty smoothly.
routing cables with basket
close up of the rear straddle cable "Racer" Hack
rear brake hooked up

 I am very pleased to be able to complete this bike so my Niece can get it down to Corvallis with her this week.  The good news is that we both have the same car -late 90s/early 2000s Honda civic 4 doors and I was able to get the bike in mine so it should work in hers.  The catch is I needed to do things like remove the basket, front wheel (naturally) and loosen up the stem to get it to fit so I will be giving her a crash course in reassembly before she leaves.

I am hopeful this bike will be useful and reliable transport for her while she is in grad school.  And it will be nice to know a bike I built is tooling around my old stomping grounds.

I hope the finished product was worth the wait for those of you who have been following this series on the Campus bike.  As always