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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have not been paying attention to cycling equipment since the '80s. I have been riding my steel frame/Campagnolo Super Record racing bike since then.

So this weekend, I was out riding and suffered a fatigue failure of my stem. Started me thinking that I should probably upgrade the bike. The main thing that has been bothering me is that I would like lower gears since I'm 50 and there are lots of mountains around here. Super Record was supposed to work with 24 tooth gears, but that was apparently an exaggeration to some degree. My recent experience tells me that to be comfortable on a lot of the local climbs is going to require about a 26 tooth, so that's totally out with what I've got.

So then I started looking around, and realized that since my bike probably cost $1500 back in '81, just to equal its performance was probably going to cost me $2k for a new bike. I'd rather not spend that much.

So here's where I'm at. I need new pedals. I'm thinking about replacing the derailleurs, at least the rear wheel, and possibly the crank. Basically I just want to preserve the performance I have, which is pretty good, and not compromise on quality. Is this foolish?
 

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I was faced with the same dilemma and decided to purchase a new Serotta Fierte steel bike to replace my Schwinn Paramount. It was much cheaper to purchase a new bike, especially since I got the complete bike with Ultegra groupo and pedals for $2,044. It came with Shimano WH-550R wheels and I have upgraded them. But that can be done for $300 to $500 depending on what you want.

However I still have the Paramount and may eventually send it back to Paramount for restoration and replace all the components. If I do this, I will wait until my 7-speed Shimano 600 components are completely worn out. If this were my only bike and I was riding mountains I would not have the luxury of waiting since I am almost 50 instead of 30 when I originally purchased the bike.

Good luck.
 

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I do not know if you have a six or seven speed freewheel, but you can easily change to a seven speed freewheel with a 26 or 28 on it. (I'm sure that some old Campy experts can tell you what the max is)
Hitting 50 is no reason to need granny gears. You just need to get into shape (if you want to)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I have a 6 speed freewheel. I should look to see if the problem I'm having is related to chain length.

My bike has been ridden hard over the last 30 years, so it's not really worth restoring.

I guess it would be cheaper just to get in shape
 

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If you're not going to be riding a lot and the bike is in otherwise OK condition,
Loosescrews.com and Harris Cyclery may be able to locate a cassette with
lower ratios and other spares. Trying to selectively modernize the machine
would probably not be cost-effective and if it has collector value, better to
restore it and buy a newer bike for daily riding.
 

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What he said...

dekindy said:
I was faced with the same dilemma and decided to purchase a new Serotta Fierte steel bike to replace my Schwinn Paramount. It was much cheaper to purchase a new bike, especially since I got the complete bike with Ultegra groupo and pedals for $2,044. It came with Shimano WH-550R wheels and I have upgraded them. But that can be done for $300 to $500 depending on what you want.

However I still have the Paramount and may eventually send it back to Paramount for restoration and replace all the components. If I do this, I will wait until my 7-speed Shimano 600 components are completely worn out. If this were my only bike and I was riding mountains I would not have the luxury of waiting since I am almost 50 instead of 30 when I originally purchased the bike.

Good luck.
...you can get a descent bike new for not all that much money. Regardez:

http://www.coloradocyclist.com/product/kit/DXXAASU1
 

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sell the old bike

with the Super record
if you 'upgrade' it, you damage its resale value on the collectors market
buy quality used or wait til Nov when the blowout the 2008s
keep the vintage as-is for a sunday rider or sell it
 

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What kind of frame do you have - that will affect value. If it is a good well known frame - keep it. You've got good period correct components. The point is your bike may be worth keeping.

Also agree with above poster, it is better to buy new for modern components than adding bits to your old bike.
 

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If your bike is a Colnago, Merckx, Pinarello or other boutique name, then it's best to keep it all original, or at least outfit it with period-correct componentry.

If the bike is a 'common' one (don't mistake that for being junk – just some bikes have collector value, some don't), then there's not much harm in upgrading to newer componentry, especially if it means you'll be riding it more.

Of my bikes, two of my best riding bikes are a '92 Paramount PDG and my commuter/foul-weather trainer '85 Schwinn Prelude. They're smooth and supple over the road, and ride nearly as well as my newer race bikes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The frame is from Viner, which has always been a value brand. It was an incredibly nice frame but I'm sure it has no collector's value when there are so many pristine frames out there that haven't been ridden for thousands of miles.

I figure the frame has many more miles on it. Interesting nobody thinks I should upgrade it though.
 

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unterhausen said:
The frame is from Viner, which has always been a value brand. It was an incredibly nice frame but I'm sure it has no collector's value when there are so many pristine frames out there that haven't been ridden for thousands of miles.

I figure the frame has many more miles on it. Interesting nobody thinks I should upgrade it though.
You're right.

This is what you do: Buy an alloy Centaur group and nice wheelset. Install it all and keep the old parts in a box in the basement. Ride the bike. Enjoy.

A Viner is bike well-worth owning for many thousands of miles more, especially if it's well-loved and in good condition. I've always liked seeing perfect, museum-quality vintage bikes in period-correct dressage, but I also REALLY like seeing older vintage frames with newer componentry on them.

My friend has a Carla (very rare custom Italian builder) frame from the '80s that he put a Centaur group on and it gets compliments everywhere he goes. Why not do something similar?
 

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MR_GRUMPY said:
I do not know if you have a six or seven speed freewheel, but you can easily change to a seven speed freewheel with a 26 or 28 on it. (I'm sure that some old Campy experts can tell you what the max is)
Hitting 50 is no reason to need granny gears. You just need to get into shape (if you want to)
26 is no problem. 28 would be a pushing it.
 

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I agree just upgrade the components

I have two steel frames that are from the 80's and have upgraded the components. If you use Campy you can't beat the value of Centaur. Plus, you can find some really good deals on 2006 Centaur.
 

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If all you are looking for is to get that extra low gear all you need is a new freewheel and new rear derailleur. Shouldn't cost more than $60.00 if you shop around for value. Any modern short cage derailleur can handle 26t cog. or mid cage for 28. You may consider upgrading new rear wheel to cassette for extra capacity and more available low gear range. If you stay with friction shifting you can get a 105/open sport rear wheel for cheap and be reliable. Staying with campy would cost much more.......
 
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