Steel is Real

I tend to love it when an old steel frame comes through the bicycle shop door. I became enamoured with them during the Bridgestone years. I think I had a RB-? and at the local mountain bike races we did in Lafayette, Indiana I fell in love with the XO series. I have wanted one since.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago. My uncle called and wanted to know if I would like to have his old XO. Not sure which one or the year, 92 or 93, but I said yes. Yes, please!

In the next few weeks I should have it arriving at my door.

Back to the shop.

Around the time of the call with the XO an old Peugeot mountain bike graced our doors. And I had the priveldge of getting it back up to speed.

I overhauled it, put new tires on, and my co-worker found an old generator that worked to hook up to the lights still on the bike. It turned out quite well.

I took the pictures with the wheel spinning so the lights would show up.

This bike was purchased in Europe by a serviceman who rode it all over while there. He wanted to get it back up and running to ride around. There was some nostalgia going on.

Just this past week we had another similar situation. A European Bridgestone Wild West was brought in for some fine tuning. I believe the man was also stationed over there at the time. We chatted a bit about Bridgestone’s. I think he was surprosed anyone even knew what it was.

Which brings me to a future post. We have a road bike museum developing in part of out store. You should start to see those posts mixed in with the rest.

Hope that it’s nice, sunny weather to ride where you’re at!


Today It Was a Suburban

This Schwinn came in yesterday for new tires. They were so dry rotted that the nubs left on them could cut you.

We got to talking about the color, chestnut, which a couple of us had had in the Varsity variety. The Suburban still looks good, a few nicks and chips here and there. Besides the tires, a little lube, some polish, the only other problem was a stripped rear axle. I dug up one from a donor wheel that  it’s rim had seen better days. She’s good to go now!


Motion Makers Bike Shop



imageWell, the shop I had visited in my last post is now the shop that I work at. And I couldn’t be happier! I will post more as I go. 

Warm Weather Means the Shop is Getting Busier

You know, half of what I do at a bicycle shop is educating the customer. I had a few gathering information today. It starts with listening to the customer and asking some targeted questions to understand what they really want and/or need. If it had not been raining today, they would have taken the bikes out for a test ride. That will be for another day.

Tune-ups are also starting to come in. And this reminds me that there are some items that need to be checked and replaced so that other more costly items don’t have to be.

Very important is the chain.

Stretched chain

Stretched chain

The chain in front is the stretched one. A chain doesn’t really stretch, but the pins and holes loosen up effectively making it longer. The picture above has a new chain in back and the old chain in front. (Sorry it’s a bit blurry)

What happens when you ride with a chain stretched beyond tolerances is that it kind of deforms the cassette or freewheel teeth. You will see the spaces between the teeth uneven and sometimes several teeth will look like a shark fin. If this goes on too long, even the front chainrings will get deformed.

While you may be able to ride like this without problems for a bit, when it comes time to replace the chain it won’t run over these deformed teeth smoothly. You will get skipping and/or slipping. All deformed parts will have to be replaced.


So, make sure when you take your bike in to get serviced to have the chain measured. Could save you a bundle.

My Weekend Project at the Shop


This older Raleigh is really a beautiful bike. I wish the paint was in a little better condition. Here is a link to what looks like the original ad for the bike. Here’s another link. Looks to be a 1974 – 1976 Super Course MK 2.


It had a machined aluminum crankset.


I spent a great deal of time taking bearing areas apart and the above was the usual result. Good shape, but in really gummy grease. Cleaned and repacked all of it.


Not sure if you can see any difference. The silver stays and fork blades polished out well. I ended up re-lacing part of the rear wheel. Surprisingly it trued up nicely.

Hoping for another good weekend project next week!

The Festina is Finished!

2001 Specialized Festine Team Bicycle

The 2001 Specialized Festina Team bike is complete. With a brand new groupo in the form of SRAM Force and a Red WiFli rear derailleur this bike is ready to roll.

Thursday Pugsley Pootling Loop

Just getting onto the Veterans Blvd portion of my little loop. In the background are some hills, and what you don’t see due to the angle of my camera, Mt LeConte.

By tilting my camera, the mountains reappear! Weird.

Here I am on the other side of my loop. The rather large home to the left of the pole was built to some old building standards. I need to talk to a friend about exactly what was different…but the home was super expensive due to this. It stood empty for years since the economic downturn.

More Pugsley Watching…I loaded up the Pugs into my truck after the ride and headed home. At a stoplight I looked in my rearview mirror to see the guy behind me with his iPhone pointed at the Pugs snapping a picture. Also, had a gal come back into the shop after she picked up her bike and put it into her car asking what that thing in the green truck was.