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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently got a Raleigh Mixte Record for my wife, and I am in the process of unpacking and reassembling it, while at the same time trying to take pictures and keep track of what's what.

I realize that mixte frames hold very little interest for most riders, as most like a fast, light frame, but this bike should be perfect for my wife. She wears dresses all the time, and finds a standard bike frame to be inconvenient. This was the purpose of the mixte frame and others with lowered top bar. They also made mounting the bike much easier.

Some of the pictures I have show the bike's condition, and some are for identification purposes. I searched all over the bike for a serial number and was unable to find one. Does anyone know where to look, and how to determine the age of the bike?

Some other facts I gleaned from looking closely: the letters NG on the crank, 20-40 carbon steel frame, Simplex Prestige derailleurs, Weinmann 610 front brakes, 750 back, Sturmey-Archer spoke protector, and a stem with CB on the side.

Can you help me determine this bicycle's manufacture date, and also determine the quality of the components it has?
 

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Arrogant roadie.....
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God, what a piece of junk! Crappy old Simplex derailleur, those awful Helicomatic hubs, heavy cottered crank, even has chicken levers! A bike in that condition might bring $5 at the local Salvation Army junk store, and that would be high! This was a basic $100 bike back in about 1976, and was the lowest of the Raleigh line.

Hope you weren't expecting anything light or sophisticated or cheap. Finished, this bike will weigh a bit over 30 lbs. (I know-I used to work on lead-sleds like this back in the 70's), and judging by the pics, it's gonna need a lot of work first. Old Raleighs of this period use non-standard parts (whitworth threading, even!), and replacement parts are scarce and expensive. In the end, you'll probably spend $350 on parts to have a $25 bike.

Good luck. I hope your wife isn't too insulted by this gift......
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I realize that it is not a valuable bicycle, nor is it pristine. I also realize that I asked for feedback, which means I must be willing to accept positive AND negative feedback. Mr. Stohler is entitled to his opinion. That said, I will ignore his abrasive attitude and comments, and ENJOY reassembling a bike that is in acceptable working order, and then give it to my wife to ride for HER ENJOYMENT, and then accompany her on my Schwinn. Neither of us has to have a top-of-the-line bicycle, and a compensating superiority complex, to enjoy riding a bicycle. Thanks to those who withheld personal criticism, and helped me. YOU are gentlemen cyclists!
 

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Know It All
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If this were in person, I'd probably keep my mouth shut, but this is the internet so here goes.

Dave_Stohler's reply was harsh, but he does have a point. Bicycle components have come a long way since that bike was built (although I wasn't alive at the time -- apparently the Record got cotterless cranks in 1977, so my experience is limited), and -- even considering only bikes of similar vintage -- there would have been better choices. Raleigh did use some proprietary parts which will probably give you trouble if you want to upgrade them (http://sheldonbrown.com/raleigh26.html). In addition, It's my understanding that, although not proprietary, cottered cranks can be a pain (http://sheldonbrown.com/cotters.html).

So you can
A) do basic maintenance and use the components that came with the bike (assuming nothing is broken, otherwise you go to plan B) and at best you'll end up with a bike that functions like it did when it was made. In that case, it will work but probably not as well a new bike, or even a better old bike.
B) go through the trouble and cost of upgrading components to make the bike better than it was, but still inferior to new (and even some better old) bikes.

Unlike Dave_Stohler, I don't think your choice was stupid, just silly. To summarize: If you can just reassemble it and ride off, you're probably in the clear. If you have to do real work on it reconsider your options. If you enjoy working on old bikes, you may be tempted to do the real work, but that might be for your satisfaction, not for your wife's -- she may enjoy a better functioning bike more.
 

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"Cypress Gardens" Fl.
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First off. I think you guys forget yourselves. It is clear to me that "slomo1" is obviously somewhat jubilant that he has gotten his loving wife a bicycle she can ride. Personally, I think it's great and all you can do is slam him for it, telling him it was junk and a crappy bike. Sure, the components may not be "Record" level, but they will certainly do the job and provide years of enjoyment for his wife's pleasure. I like the way some of you so-called experts come off with this, like the bike was doomed from the start before it even left the factory. You just read his wife finds standard frames inconvenient, and that she wears dresses all the time, so it should clear that his frame choice addresses that issue. Now his wife has a nice bike she can ride. Once slomo1 gets it all cleaned up and adjusted for her, they can ride off together in eternal bliss...no thanks to you!!

I think some of you guys need a crash course in "etiquette"
 

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croswell1 said:
I think some of you guys need a crash course in "etiquette"
Or common sense. Isn't it obvious that she doesn't need the latest/lightest/most expensive parts ? She wears a dress to ride a bike ! Sometimes the elitism around here gets to be abit much.
When I was younger, I put 25mi/day on a Caldor (remember that place ?) bought Huffy 10 speed. That thing survives 'till this day. Granted, it could use some grease, and its almost as heavy as some of your girlfriends, but Im sure it has well over 10k miles of 15yo abuse.
Im all for technology and pimp parts...But seriously, not everyone in the world needs 'em (or wants 'em for that matter).
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Steve-H said:
(or wants 'em for that matter).
Oh, I want them, I just can't afford them. And knowing my wife's reservations regarding my cycling costs versus the actual benefits, I knew better than to buy something expensive. I WANTED to buy her an Electra!

I should mention, overall, I find this forum and its members to be very helpful and encouraging. Not everyone on this forum has the financial ability to ride custom carbon/ti/lugged steel with the bling components, but we all love our bikes, and everything that goes with them. I especially enjoy the vintage/retro stuff, because its just so CLASSY!

I just hope my 80-ish Schwinn Traveler with the apparently SRAM rear derailleur, and RPM crank, and the B-17 saddle and moustache bars I plan to install on it, doesn't offend anyone's sensibilities, because I fully intend to post it here. I am just waiting on the delivery van at this point.

BTW, I noticed that on the Simplex rear der., the one plastic sprocket is broken. I figure the best thing to do is replace the derailleur with another. I have a Shimano Eagle, and a Shimano Tourney that I salvaged off some damaged frames. Which would be the better choice? And that is an OLD Tourney, not the new ones you find on Ebay. I have tried to find info on it, but can't.
 

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"It's alive!"
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Fun Project!!

slowmo1 said:
I realize that mixte frames hold very little interest for most riders
While this may be true, there is growing interest in mixtes amongst the retrogrouch community. Rivendell just introduced two mixte models, one for women and one for men.

Your Raleigh looks like a great project bike. Others have mentioned that there are some non-standard parts on the bike with strange and mysterious threadings, so you may want to try to keep as many of the original parts as possible. A nice, light set of rims would certainly add a bit of zip to the bicycle, though, so you might want to consider that.

The derailleurs... How to put this?... Shifting a chain across cogs or chainrings is not their strong point... Still, they may be hard to replace, so you might want to get them working as best as possible. It sounds like your wife might not be a hard-core cyclist, if she rides in a dress most of the time. Perhaps she is going to do mostly short jaunts. If so, you might want to try to simplify the drivetrain as much as possible. Do you need all those gears? If not, you might want to consider getting rid of the front derailleur.

You might also consider going to upright handlebars. See the Rivendell mixtes for a good example of these:

http://www.rivendellbicycles.com/html/bikes_mixte.html

You can use those as a good source of inspiration.

Now, to those folks who will tell you that a modern bike will function better than this antique... You might want to remind them that this is the RETRO-CLASSIC forum, where we value various things not related to light-weight race bikes or slick shifting indexed drivetrains. Or you might want to ignore them altogether.

Fixing up this bike, watching your wife ride this bike, trying to keep those derailleurs shifting... all these things should bring you many hours of joy (and perhaps a bit of frustration as well, but that goes along with bicycle restoration).

Enjoy it!

- FBB
 

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Ok, here's the deal. Like a previous poster stated the bike is pretty much junk when compared to a high end road bike of the period. But, where this douche bag is eager to point out the short comings of your find, he does not impart any positive advise (must just be a bitter soul). This bike will make a geat single speed. I've built up a very similar ride for my wife from a 70's Centurion mixte, and it's a well appreciated and utterly swell bicycle.
 

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"Cypress Gardens" Fl.
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Now thats a good idea, but I would go one further and advise making it a single speed with a coaster brake. On the other hand "slomo1", if the derailleurs clean up good and work good, then thats fine. But if you want to upgrade, you can find old Shimano 600 parts on e-bay for dirt cheap, and that is the "good stuff," my friend! Keep us informed as to your progress.
 

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From many years of dealing with everything bicycle, I've learned that no bicycle ever ridden or yet to be ridden deserves to be called junk. If anyone has found or will find some pleasure in riding it, that bicycle has served or will serve its purpose admirably well - no matter where it stands in the current pecking order.
 

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Maybeck said:
But, where this douche bag is eager to point out the short comings of your find, he does not impart any positive advise (must just be a bitter soul)
Um... er... I see that you were responding to my post, but I am confused if I am the douche bag to whom you were refering. I did mention that the derailleurs weren' t the best ever, but I also said the bike would be a great project for slomo1. I tried to give some positive advice about turning the bike into a five speed and putting on upright bars.

There are lots of great things about this bike. I think it would be a fun project, and I am pretty sure he and his wife would be quite happy with the final product. Those old Raleighs were good, solid bikes, and as I mentioned, mixtes are getting some attention again these days by quality companies like Rivendell.

Yours,

FBB
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I don't think he was referring to you, FBB. And I looked at the link to Rivendell. Those are some nice rides. Although I really wonder if they are "true" mixte frames....doesn't matter. Cool nonetheless. Think they used upside down moustache bars?
 

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slowmo1 said:
I don't think he was referring to you, FBB. And I looked at the link to Rivendell. Those are some nice rides. Although I really wonder if they are "true" mixte frames....doesn't matter. Cool nonetheless. Think they used upside down moustache bars?
Nope. Them there bars are the real Albatrosses. - FBB

PS: Yes, I think I over-reacted. I re-read my previous post and I was pretty durn supportive.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Well, I started on the Raleigh. First thing I did was scrub the freewheel cassette on the rear wheel with Purple Stuff, and rinsed it off good. The gears look good, but the freewheel is very loud. What are my options there? Next, I decided to remove the broken sprockets on the Simplex rear derailleur and replace with some Shimano sprockets robbed off a Shimano Tourney derailleur. I thought about replacing the whole thing, but the Shimano had the long cage. My solution worked well, so I will wait to see how the Simplex holds up. Next, I replaced the Simplex front derailleur with a Suntour that I had amongst my "spare parts". The Simplex seemed to be working, but the Suntour Sprint I had wasn't as rusty. That Simplex was really unusual. Had a rod that slid back and forth rather than a pivoting cage. Anyhow, then I mounted the wheels. Then I tightened up the pedals. Next came the seat and seatpost. I still need to hook the front brake cable to the brakes, but I needed to put a pizza in the oven. So far so good.

Incidentally, I found the serial number. NH5229411 Where would I go to find the year model and how many mixtes were made that year?
 
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