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stronger than strong
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This is my finally completed singlespeed road bike. It's no fixie yet, but it has aspirations - you'll have to forgive me. This forum helped with the build more than any other did.
I did a search one night on Ebay for ‘lugged‘, just to see what came up.
This frame popped up. A 70s era Gitane Tour de France ‘professionnal’ with a Stronglight 93 crankset and a new headset installed. It also came with some old cable clamps embossed with the Stronglight “S”.
Reynolds 531 steel and my size!
I knew very little about road bikes, but it looked interesting, so I gave myself a very minimal spending limit and made a bid. Without too much effort, I ended up getting it.
I was happy and at the same time thinking holy $h*t! I know nothing about skinny tires, and my first build ever is a French-made 35 year old frame with no derailleur hanger.
My initial goal was to build it for as little as possible. Powder coat and throw on what I could find - keeping it vintage was never a goal.
When the frame arrived, it looked better than I thought it would. Ratty yes, but kinda cool.
I decided to keep the paint and stickers as they are. Some day it may head down to San Diego for a restore from Cyclart, but for now it‘ll stay rough around the edges.
I started doing research, getting educated, and began collecting parts. Sheldon Brown helped a lot. The ‘cheap as possible’ idea went out the door quickly.
With the Path’s assistance I chose Surly flip-flop hubs. It’ll be a fixie someday, when I get some road skills and get the gearing dialed. They built a great set of wheels. Gearing is 42 x 16 for now.
I am pleased with how it turned out. It’s a blast to ride.
I like the yin & yang of it. The crunchy with the smooth as Billy Bragg said.
After Googling Gitane and coming up with multiple French soft-core porn sites, I have learned that Gitane means Gypsy.
So here is ‘Gypsy‘.






Simplex dropout


 

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Wow, that's a very nice looking ride. Great job! I'd love to give little Gypsy a spin myself :) Good call on keeping the original point.

(P.S. Chain could use a little slack...looks tight to me, but perhaps it's just at it's tight point in the rotation.)
 

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No Derallieur Hanger?

Great bike!

Why was it built without a derallieur hanger? 35 years old is not that old. Was it built as a ss/fixie? With a drilled brake bridge and the name "Tour de France" it doesn't look like a track frame.
 

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stronger than strong
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Roundabout said:
Great bike!

Why was it built without a derallieur hanger? 35 years old is not that old. Was it built as a ss/fixie? With a drilled brake bridge and the name "Tour de France" it doesn't look like a track frame.
No the crank was double ring. From what I've read, the derallieur was attached with bolt-on adaptor claws, secured by the rear axle.
 

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Game on, b*tches!
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13,467 Posts
Dude! Nice grab. That,as I recall, was a top-o-the-line Gitane for the times. My 1st road bike was a Gitane. Mine was baby blue but not a Tour de France. Can't remember it's exact model, but I loved that bike. Great find and great build!
 

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Wicked looking bike man! Im sitting next to a Gitane TDF as we speak. If the owner doest come in soon for it, Im taking it lol. To Ebay with the Super Record groupo!
 
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