I considered having some grand unveiling ceremony , but then I couldn't really be arsed .
Bar some minor detailing , I'm saying this is finished . It really would shine with some brand new tyres , but those period Smokes are just so right .
I'm mulling over the pedals . I suppose I should ride it with clips and straps , as I indeed did for the bulk of my MTB life . In real money , it's only the last 10 yrs that I've been on SPDs . I did a load of commuting one year on them , and it's hard to go back . Again though , clips and straps are just so right for it . I have many options . I have a large cage beartrap , Suntour XCIIs , that are comfy to use , as they offer a load of support , BUT , are a bugger to get in / out of . I also have a Suntour XC Pro . MTB parallelogram cage with clips / straps , as fitted in pic . Dead dead nice pedals . Proper top dollar stuff , BUT , bit uncomfy on the feet without a stiff soled shoe .
I also have some Tioga pedals . Plastic toe clips . Nice enough , but ever so slightly got a wobbly bearing . Work well though .
And then I have a ton of SPDs and the relevant shoes . Hmm . We'll see .
Anyway , overall I'm pleased with it . The wheels are really nice . If you'd seen them before you'd would say they weren't the same ones . I disassembled them ( with the angle grinder . See ' daily grind ' ) and then just buffed em up with Autosol . On the rims , I ingeniously ( i think ) used a terry towel on the palm sander . It stuck to the velcro . Still plenty hand rubbing though . Hubs came up good . With loads more time they could absolutely sparkle , but they were never that shiny , even when new . As it happened , I was in a rush to get them to the shop for building . In the end Alan's turned them around super quick . Norman , who builds the wheels , really has them straight as a die . Deffo recommended .
I was struggling for a freewheel . The internet sent me a nice chrome plated ' Sun Race ' one . It's still a fairly low-end product , but ten times better than them skanky Shimano generic ones . I refitted the Spoke protector . Cool original thing . Never see em these days . Oh , new M10 track nuts too .
|Wheels , duh .|
|Shiny freewheel , and colour matched rimtape.|
I'm still unsure about the saddle . The black San marco ' rolls' is closer to the original black one I had in 1987 , but , it looks a bit too flash and racey . I still might ' feed' the brown one and see how it turns out . It is dead comfy. Seatpost got a , ahem , manly rub .
The internet brought me some more stuff for the front end . I have the dead original grips . Quite a fat girth , missus , closed end , rubber . In OK condition , but I didn't want to circumcise them for the bar ends. I considered those AM'E mountain ones in lime green , and I have a set of lime green cables . Full set . Not quite the look I want . So , a web search brought up some Ritchey foam grips . Ergosomethingorother . Fairly retro look , open end with a plug . Bit like a vintage ' grab-on '.
The bar ends were ' won ' on Ebay a good while back , specifically with the Courier in mind . The'yre an ONZA ' L' bend . Really nice useable shape . Good nick . Bout a tenner . I taped them with that old style ' Tressorex' cloth bar tape in yellow . Like , a quid a roll . It'll be dirty after the first ride .Ha .
Even more time ago , I won some campagnolo thumbshifters . I'm not at liberty to say how much in a public arena . They're a really industrial thing , that would probably survive posting inflammatory videos about the prophet Mohammed in Yemen.
As deities go , I kinda like Mohammed .
I didn't spend any time at all obsessively cleaning and polishing the bars , brake levers or stem . There are a few circumferencial gouges on the bars .
Life's too short .
I nearly took apart the levers to spray over the black clampy bit with some satin black , or something . It's a job for another time . Not enough time.
Headset job was detailed earlier . All cleaned up nice , and I had a brand new 15+ yr old set of bearings . I bought them for a wobbly shimano headset , but when I cracked it open they were an angular sealed type . Early attempt at planned obsolescence . Finally got to use them , but that said , the original bearings are OK .
Bit of a fiddle with the crankset . As I said . I'd fitted a BB that I was sure would be OK . Well , it wasn't.
I banged another in and it's fine . I used a Shimano XT chainset I had , in stock . It had a Girvin ' Rock Ring ' chainring bash guard fitted . No , they're not a new idea either . The bolts are longer to accomodate this , so in the absence of any other I had to remove the ones from the stock Sugino cranks . With no more than a quick clean using white spirit , and then a cursory rub with the autosol they look OK . Again , obsessive polishing , and they would be insane . Some other time .
|The ones on the left|
I did the brakes with a blob of autosol in the towel . Came up a treat . I set them up last night , then noticed the rear pad was a bit worn . With a rummage I found another new pair , in a packet . They seem to work OK . Cantilever brakes need a bit of prep to work well . The brass pivots seem to go sticky . I quickly rubbed them down with a very fine 1200 gr sandpaper , before applying a bit of grease, BUT , taking care to not lubricate the bolt itself . I've actually seen them undo mid-ride . I should get some threadlock really . I re-used the straddle cables , and yoke .Both original Dia-Compe .
Cable outers and inner are modern day ' Jagwire ' . Off the roll in Alan's . I obsessively removed the jagwire branding with some thinners .
I didn't use the clear pads . A bit grabby , but also , they seem a bit taller from the post , so they cause the canti arms to ' droop ' a little . Not quite the correct angle . In this pic you can see the the tyres better . And the pedals I probably won't use . Harry Leary's , as it happens .
Here . Two fairly grainy zoomed in pics of the front a rear mechs . Suntour XC Pro pedals, and Steel toeclips with white leather straps AND toeclip buttons .. Phew . I cleaned the mechs in a bath of white spirit using a paint brush in the crannies and nooks . Front mech was ' spragged ' open and wedged . I aslo used a roughed up offcut of inner cable as a tiny wire brush . Top tip . Also dead handy for cleaning out recessed Allen bolt heads .
Rear mech is a teeny bit wobbly . I have a period XT one , that isn't much better really . Front mech seems OK . I still think that back then , componentry was so much more durable than today . I know it was early days . Maybe the manufacturers thought we were all going to retrace Hannibals footsteps across the Himalayas every weekend , but compared to todays kit it's really good . Considering the amount of use and abuse that poor rear derailleur has had , It's a wonder it hasn't exploded . Next week , eh ?
I does make you think though . Well it does me . All the old bikes are so ' serviceable ' . With simple tools . I've regreased the hubs , and they just work . Same with the headset . The shifters internals have about 4 pieces to them . Brake levers have a tiny amount of ' slop ' . Nylon washers will sort it for pennies .
Gear cables are the same off the roll , Jagwire . I've kinda found some properly correct silver cables, but again , they're over in la la land . They were a curious clear coated finish . Not actually silver , but you could see the silver spiral underneath . Would look nice . Hmm .
OK , so like I said , few details . I've got some ARAYA stickers coming for the rims . Hope they arrive in time . And I could do with sorting some kind of chainstay slap protector . I have a ' sharkfin ' thing I might stick on , but I'm probably just going to cut up some clear Fablon .
Custom made stickers , applied with love.