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Commuter

I had rebuilt a Puegeot Record Du Monde for a friend of a friend (who is now a friend!) back in June prior to my Portland vacation. She wanted a cool vintage single speed that she could cruise around the city with and keep up with her friends on. She was riding a slow and heavy mountain bike and wanted something swifter. I ended up building her this:

Unfortunately, after my vacation I got an email from her stating that she had a friend test ride the bike one evening and that test ride turned into an accident involving a motorist. Apparently her friend T-boned a car so hard that it shattered the cars window. The incident didnt substantiate to the point where the law needed to be involved but her bike was mangled. The fork was bent along with the front rim. The rear had a hop but I didnt trust it. She explained to me that her friend was offering to pay for the bike so she wanted to commission me for another build. I felt bad so quickly showed her this bike that I had picked up.

At the time, a friend of my dad’s had a guy who could get frames powdercoated for $50. He offered to hook us up and since that was such a good price I figured Id get the Fuji powdercoated for my friend, giving her a fresh look. The powdercoating job ended up taking FOREVER and costing $70. On top of that, there was some over spray issue. You get what you pay for so needless to say, I wont be going back with that guy. Fortunately, the bike turned out very nice.

(forgive me for these unbalanced photos, was standing on a curb two feet from automotive death)

I have a number of vintage grocery/wine crates that I have been dying to incorporate with these builds, wanting to play with the Porteur style bikes.

I really loved how it came together.

The great thing is, I was able to salvage some components from the Peugeot like the calipers, stem, handlebars, levers, hubs, freewheel, and chain.

Found some very nice faux leather wrap, nicely reupholstered saddle, solid Continental tires.

I went with orange just because the last frame was orange but it ended up being appropriate for this fall season.

I ended up not giving her the crate only because it was a bit over sized. When I delivered the bike to her I told her that she could have it though. She was extremely pleased with the finished product.

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I bought this bike of a young guy in Elgin who had the bike as a commuter for a couple months. It looked as if there was some work done to it, sporting a Sugino BT crank and Weinmann Wheels. It was fairly clean upon purchase but obviously needed a face lift.

I kept a great deal of the components on the bike. Just stripped it down, cleaned it, regreased and reassembled. Some new components/accessories but mostly just cosmetics.

Turned out very nice. Had a couple people who were interested in it but went with the most adamant. Yet another guy who needed a replacement bike because his was stolen.

Chicago has been hit was a lot of crime, aside from bike theft. Hit and runs involving cyclists as victims is steadily becoming a bigger threat now as well.

Strange times.

My grandpa occasionally crosses paths with scrapers who usually have at least one bike or two on their load. I am usually weary of buying anything from scrapers, not out of fear of stolen goods, but because they abuse the hell out of what they find. They arent going to treat a bike nicely until they have someone in front of them willing to pay $30 to take it off their hands. And the idea of paying that much for a bike that has squashed between a washing machine and a rusty old lawn mower doesnt make me feel comfortable.

Luckily, the bikes the scraper had sold my grandpa were neatly arranged on the bed of the truck and were all in decent condition. This Motobecane was one of them.

The original wheels were rusty steel disasters and the handlebars/stem were also basically made of uranium. Needless to say, it was a heavy bike.

I had a set of Araya alloy 27inch wheels that I threw on the bike, along with an alloy stem and handlebars. New chain, saddle, wrap, cables, pads, tires, and tubes.

I remember at this particular juncture, we were blessed with about 4-5 25inch frames so it was fairly easy to post one on Craiglist and sell the other frames to responders after it sold.

Another simple and efficient build.

Hey, Everyone

After leisurely sifting through ads on Craigslist for potential projects, and coming up mostly short, this beautiful grape of a bike appeared.

My dad scheduled a time for me to meet the seller the following day. Upon arrival, the bike was fairly clean. We had only replaced the routine components like cables, housing, brake pads, chain, tires, and tubes.

I dont like the idea of selling 30 year old brake pads and tubes to someone as if they were new. Plus, people seem to appreciate our minimal effort to revive these bikes.

Anyway, the bike had a Super Maxy crank which was a cool feature, as well as the original leather saddle made by Bell. Japanese Brooks. It was a bit flared out and lightly broken in so we tightly wrapped the saddle with a cloth in an attempt to mold it back to its original shape. I think it worked.

Oddly enough, despite it being a 23 inch frame I was able to ride it around the block a couple times, semi comfortably. Rode smooth and shifted with ease. I ended up selling the bike to a friend who fell for the aesthetics. Cute bike.