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i need a low cost way to get onto the road for group rides and training. I am frustrated in trying to buy a new bike low cost, and buying used in very challenging for lots of reasons. I have 2 Raleigh Grandprix bikes from around 1984. they are both in great shape. I am thinking about dragging them out of the time capsule and starting to really use them again. I raced one of them quite a bit back in the day. I don't mind being old school, but at the same time, as a new guy on group rides, I likely won't be taken very seriously - I race mtb bikes so I have the engine however. should I go old-school on the road? I could keep one geared, and make the other SS.
 

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Looks like a nice bike. I have a Super Course from the same era. Maybe look into new wheels although your choice may be limited by your drive system. Anyway I wouldn't worry about them taking you seriously. Your old bike will keep them off guard and when you kick their a$$ they will take you seriously. Nothing is worse than some poser that shows up with a $5000 bike that can't ride for s**t.
 

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That things a POS. Don't fix it up. Instead, donate it to a good home (like mine).

Just kidding.

Looks like a cool, solid bike to me. IMHO, I think it's silly that people worry about how others will perceive what kind of bike they ride. Like you said, you've got the engine.
 

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n00bsauce
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IMHO that bike is very road worthy and nice looking. I'd replace the rubber with something more squishy and check the gearing to match it to your riding style and terrain but that's about it. My most enjoyable bike is a 1989 Schwinn Circuit with DT shifters and 7spd gearing. Depending on the group you plan to ride with you might get a look but if you've got the engine they won't care what you're riding. In fact it might impress/embarass them more if you can ride with them (or above them) and not be riding a 17lb wonder.
 

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Is being "taken seriously" really a worry?

I'm w/Mel: Set it up to suit you and just go ride. If you deserve to be taken seriously (assuming you care about that) you will be, and if you don't, a new bike won't help. Don't spend any money "upgrading" to 10-speed DA or buying miracle wheels or color-matching your socks to the labels on the tires. Get on and ride.
 

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That is real nice, solid bike the way it is. Definately, fix it up...new cables, chain, freewheel if need be, tires posssibly if they are worn out, but keep it old school, that is what is cool about it.

I wouldn't worry for a second about the "image" question. Especially if you are strong and can ride, this bike says, "I was riding way before you even thought about it, and can ride you into the ground without a 15 pouund wonder bike." People are much more intimidated by an experienced rider with chiseled legs and an old bike who shows up for a group ride, than somebody who just took up road riding last year and obviously has more money than motor.

good luck!
brewster
 

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bauerb said:
i need a low cost way to get onto the road for group rides and training. I am frustrated in trying to buy a new bike low cost, and buying used in very challenging for lots of reasons. I have 2 Raleigh Grandprix bikes from around 1984. they are both in great shape. I am thinking about dragging them out of the time capsule and starting to really use them again. I raced one of them quite a bit back in the day. I don't mind being old school, but at the same time, as a new guy on group rides, I likely won't be taken very seriously - I race mtb bikes so I have the engine however. should I go old-school on the road? I could keep one geared, and make the other SS.
FYI, I am far more impressed with a great engine than a great bike. Who gives a crap what you are riding as long as you are keeping up with the group. In fact, I would have a lot more respect for the guy on the 24 lb. beater that is setting the pace, than the weight-weenie on his $5000 15 lb rocket. Just make sure it is in good working order and ride!!!
 

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My bikes are all 80s vintage with mtb pedals, too. You'll be taking seriously if you're smooth, strong and can hold a line. So go kick some Eurotrash team kit poseur ass. Remember to wear your black socks.
 

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All I ever use are old bikes, I had a late 80's Fuji, An 1985 Raleigh Racing bike, and now a 1987 Bianchi Campione d'Italia (which is in mint condition). All the guys at college laugh at me when we meet up to go for a ride, but when I drop them they reconcider my bike thats almost older than me lol... I would just fix up your bike, get rid of the squeeks and some new tires will do you fine. Its more reasuring when you pass someone with a squeeky bike when the person your passing is huffing and puffing with a new bike.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
thanks for the encouragement

wow, I figured it would be a unanimous "junk those bikes". I am stoked that people support the idea of getting them fixed up. I bought 1 of them as my first race bike back in 1984, it was all I could afford at $215 new at the LBS. I was 14. the other bike was my dad's . both are basically identical. I probably still have my 1984 vintage Sidi bike shoes with the old school cleats....



Henry Chinaski said:
My bikes are all 80s vintage with mtb pedals, too. You'll be taking seriously if you're smooth, strong and can hold a line. So go kick some Eurotrash team kit poseur ass. Remember to wear your black socks.
 

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Nice looking bike

I would rather pedal my 80s Fuji then my 02 Jamis. The Fuji is built like a tank while a Jamis is built like a wet noodle. My wife gets upset because I don't ride the Jamis more for the money it cost.
 

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Throw on some new tires, a new chain, and a 12-19 7 speed freewheel, and you'll be ready to go to town. (you may want to pick up a 13-24 for hilly areas)
 

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geraldatwork said:
Looks like a nice bike. I have a Super Course from the same era. Maybe look into new wheels although your choice may be limited by your drive system. Anyway I wouldn't worry about them taking you seriously. Your old bike will keep them off guard and when you kick their a$$ they will take you seriously. Nothing is worse than some poser that shows up with a $5000 bike that can't ride for s**t.
worst case he could just have the wheels rebuilt. Keep the old hubs, have them rebuilt, then get new, lighter rims and spokes.
 

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I ride a latest and greatest 10 speed for group rides, but if I had the motor, I'd ride a 5 or 6 speed Nuovo Record with friction shifters. I don't think any of that new stuff adds anything to the enjoyment of cycling, but on competitive group rides 8 or more gears with brake lever shifters provide a small but critical advantage. If you are strong enough to overcome the disadvantage, ride the old bike. Otherwise, convert both the old bikes to fixed, put one on Ebay and by a new road bike.

em
 

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Is it true most bikes of that vintage come with a 42-tooth small ring? I heard that, and, if so, 42-19 is still a fairly steep gear, eh?

Oh, wait. Got my thinking cap on now. 27" wheels means that you need a bit smaller gears than 700c, right?

I need to do some conversions.

But it's a pretty bike. Chromed stays were one of my fav touches on old school bikes. If I ever get that Vanilla, I'm definitely going for it.
 

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Keep

Just picked up a Trek 760 (Reynolds 531c) with Suntour Superbe, Matrix 36-hole wheels ... stuck one of my many surplus saddles on it, a Forgie stem, new rubber ... a great ride. Downtube shifters are wonderful to relive ... reminds me of when the engine meant more than the gears.

Buddy of mine has the same frame. He stuck some 9-speed Ultegra on it, a sacrilege, but he loves it. And that's all the matters.

Ride what feels good. After that, who cares? :)
 

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That bikes almost assuredly got 700c wheels. You have to go back a bit further for 27" to be common. However, 52/42 was not uncommon with 700c wheels. I've got an '85 Cannondale that came with 52/42. No need for a wimpy 39 tooth ring. We were strong in those days.
 

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Definitely ride it!
I spent all last summer doing group rides on an '83 trek 520 I found at a garage sale, also just moving from MTB to road. Show up on that and don't get dropped by the lead group. Nobody will question you. Even better if you can drop people on the hills :)
 

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bauerb said:
i need a low cost way to get onto the road for group rides and training. I am frustrated in trying to buy a new bike low cost, and buying used in very challenging for lots of reasons. I have 2 Raleigh Grandprix bikes from around 1984. they are both in great shape. I am thinking about dragging them out of the time capsule and starting to really use them again. I raced one of them quite a bit back in the day. I don't mind being old school, but at the same time, as a new guy on group rides, I likely won't be taken very seriously - I race mtb bikes so I have the engine however. should I go old-school on the road? I could keep one geared, and make the other SS.
That's a real beauty! A '64 Mustang of a cycle. Tune her up with new cables & rubber and enjoy the road.

Riders who don't respect well-preserved classic cycles are worse than posers.
 
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