Show us your vintage bikes

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This topic contains 33 replies, has 13 voices, and was last updated by February 14, 2018 at 2:13 pm.

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    Fait accompli.

    After 5 months of turning my basement into a vintage-retro bike work shop and surfing dozens of open community vintage bike forums, hassling bike store mechanics for New-Old-School (NOS) advice, sourcing parts, including a clandestine kijiji meeting riffling through a persons parts bins in their basement …I have rebuilt my Canadian Made 1982 Peugeot Sprint UO12 to perfect working condition.

    It was purchased from Gibbon’s Sports and Cycle in Timmins, Ontario in 1982 for about $350.


    Right away you can tell by the WCC livery inspired green Fizik saddle & bar tape + red Shimano cable housing that this wasn’t a “purist” rebuild. That said, other than a few blingy parts and NOS Shimano 600 brake levers & hoods, the bike is largely original.

    As I started researching the bike, I discovered that the bike is actually a rather ordinary, entry level racing bike that was “value-engineered” for Peugeot by VeloSport in Canada.


    That means that VeloSport started substituting the full Shimano groupset, elegant French pantographed components and ornate headbadge for “lesser parts” to save money. But as I began to take the bike apart to clean and take a closer inspection, I was very pleased to find a whole host of wonderful handmade parts manufactured in Germany, Switzerland, France, Italy and Japan.

    The story of the Canadian Made Peugeot is well documented on the vintage-made Canadian bikes website called, My bike was a Peugeot Sprint UO12*



    I began to find small idiosyncrasies in my bike:

    Like the handmade Ambrosio Durex rims were different sizes, 700cc wheel on the front & 27 inch on the back.


    I had a beautiful set of gum-walled tires to go on those rims, but had to settle for a set of Vittoria Zaffiro’s because they are one of the few tires that are still manufacturered in both 700mm and 27inch and look the same. Thanks Jamie!


    I noticed that the German made Weinmann brake calipers were a “reversed set” with front brake on the right hand and rear on the left hand. Check out the cables, below. Beautifully smooth, symmetrical…but the cable from the right hand brake lever goes to the left side of the front break! You may ask why? Well, you ride on the left hand side of the road in Europe, so you need your right hand free to signal. It’s the reverse in North America where we ride on the right hand side of the road.


    Still on the brake caliper, I was cleaning the back when I noticed the number 500. Which means they are, indeed, “Weinmann 500” left hand brake calipers from Europe.


    And looking even closer, there is a stamp on the back that says, “Brake Made in Eastern Germany”. Huh.


    I discovered that the bike had Suntour “retro-friction” downtube shifters…an innovation at the time that introduced an “internal spring” in the shifter, to per-load and hold the shifter tension so the thumb shifter was easier to shift but wouldn’t slip. Unfortunately, they are plastic. If I find a set of metal Shimano 600 EX shifters to match the rest of the drive train, that would be one last upgrade that I just might have to make.


    There is a very specific history to the tubeset as well, called Reynold 453. I found an old Reynold tube chart explaining that, “Reynolds 453 Ti-Tech Cycles bearing the transfer have frame tubes manufactured from Reynolds 453 high magnesium/titanium tubes.” It goes on to say that it is only the main triangle that is 453. But hey, there’s Titanium in them tubes. Unfortunately, it doesn’t help with the weight, as the final weigh in tips the scales at 25lbs.

    Frankly, I really like the tubes and lugs. The colour of the paint is called, “Translucent Bordeaux”. I cleaned it up and buffed the frame with Turtle wax to bring out a high shine. I hadn’t noticed the gold detailing around the lugs. Now, it’s all I notice.


    And the neat little cable guides.

    And beefy headbadge and strong fork shoulders

    There were a few strange frame elements that I couldn’t figure out? One of them is this little round metal post that is welded to the inside of the right seat stay? I thought it might have something to do with paniers? To hook something on? However, I did notice how natural it was to hook the chain around it when I took the rear wheel off. With the chain perfectly and lightly hung of that little post, it took up all the tension and the chain sat perfectly on the frame with the derailleur pulled taught. Maybe?


    I really enjoyed discovering the origin of several other nifty parts as I began to take a closer look.

    Custom stem and aluminum bars from japan

    Cranks from France

    Red leather Christophe toe straps from France

    Ale toe clips from Italy (Torino)

    In a previous post, I mentioned that I replaced the drive train long ago. It was originally Suntour Simplex, but I upgraded the derailleurs to Shimano 600 EX and recently had found the matching Shimano 600 EX brake levers. Thanks Paul! And sourced replacement brake hoods from Dia-Compe.





    Love the gold chain and 6 speed “corn-cob” TT freewheel. 12-13-14-15-16-17

    I found a gold water bottle cage to match the Peugeot decal. Little bling.


    To complete the whole experience, my brother in law gave me retro old school slotted pedal cleats for my shoes to use with the toe clips and a Classic Brooklyn Jersey. I even purchased a hairnet, but not sure if I’ll wear it outside of the neighbourhood, as it’s about a protective as a watermelon rind.




    I intend to ride in a local L’Eroica inspired event this summer. And then possibly retro-fit it with tin fenders, a copper bell and leather panniers to use as my commuting bike to work this summer.

    I want to thank Jamie at McPhails, Andy at KingStreet, Tovi at Labicicletta, Calvin at VintageCycles, Urbane Cyclist & Paul M for the Shimano 600 BL-6208 drilled brake levers.

    And thanks most of all to my Father, Michel, who bought me my first bike.

    Ride well, everyone.




    Alain, your bike looks great! That is indeed a chain hanger on the inside of the driveside seatstay. The were standard issue on steel bikes for long time. Thanks for being a huge geek! And for sharing your process with us. Hope you have at least a couple more adventures on the Peugeot.



    Decided to ride to work today on my new-old bike.

    Come on Kryptonite Lock. Don’t let me down!



    It’s the post that keeps on giving. Three people have approached me with their stories of how they are rebuilding or rebuilt their old Peugeots and VeloSports.

    Also people are digging into their old parts bins to offer parts they no longer need, and that I could use. Gaelen was the first out of the gate offering me a set of 27 inch Conti’s, which he mistakenly purchased years ago thinking they were 700s.

    You could imagine how surprised I was yesterday, when a Dean at the University of Waterloo read this post and emailed me a picture of his 1987 Peugeot that he bought in Germany and brought over here to ride to work. He switched the Shimano downtube shifters for brake lever shifters. He noted my comment above that if I can find a nice pair of metal, 6-speed Shimano shifters I’d replace the plastic Suntour’s I have on there now (which are cracked at the back).

    Well, I get an email from the Dean this morning. He found the shifters in his parts bin last night, so I rode across campus today (on my old school bike) and picked them up. Cost? Free. Well, I’ll go visit him next week for a coffee or lunch. To talk about bikes, what else?

    Another person came out of the woodwork after noticing my “corn-cob” TT freewheel in 1 tooth increments 12-13-14-15-16-17. And wondered if that was a bit tight and not that useful for everyday riding and that he had a Mallard Freewheel that precisely matches my hub. And it’s 13-14-15-17-19-21. I now have more gearing options and the smooth metal shifters to make them sing…Tourmalet, here I come!


    Finally, I emailed Henry, the owner of Labiciletta again, today. Telling him about the growing interest in vintage bikes behind the scenes here at WCC. Though it’s probably just me, geeking out about it. But, he loved this whole thread and seeing everyone’s bikes from their youth. Such history, meaning and love of those first road bikes. When life was simpler. He’ll ask the organizer, Chris, if he is interested in hosting the Classica here again this Spring. If not, then we may host a WCC Vintage Ride.

    Until then, call your parents and go pull that old bike out of the family basement. Or search for Vintage bikes on Kijiji. They are only $500. It’s a whole new, old world.




    Here is an option for wcc vintage bike enthusiasts…Turas Mor Vintage Bike event Creemore Springs May 14



    Seriously, seriously, seriously going to consider this.

    And it’s run by MultiSport Canada.

    Thanks James.



    Riders are encouraged to wear vintage jerseys and gear and to ride on a “heroic” bike made prior to 1987. Our preference for vintage rides would be to have three of the following criteria:

    • Steel frame or a frame made in 1987 or earlier
    • Non-indexed shifting
    • Old style toe clip pedals with straps
    • Single speed
    • Downtube shift levers
    • Tubular tires

    Things that could disqualify you from being heroic, even if you have three of the above
    • suspension forks
    • carbon frame

    No heroic bike, no problem, other road worthy gravel bikes are welcome!



    This is all very cool. Unfortunately my parents simply threw out several really sweet steel bikes(my bikes plus others in our family), my collection of 70’s pro jerseys, etc….cuz they said they were “old”…

    But Alain, you oughta post your handy work to the face book page “Steel is Real Vintage Bikes”

    to see what kind of comments you get. Its based in the UK, but is very international, so all sorts of people make really interesting comments.



    I contacted Creemore Springs for more information on the Turas Mor Vintage Bike event in Creemore Springs on May 14.

    A very nice person, named Stephanie, their Brand & Customer Engagement Manager has been keeping me in the loop on registration.

    There are only 20 available registration spots left (out of 150). And can you believe it…I’m double booked for a family event that weekend ! So, I am out.

    I’ve been riding my vintage bike to work and it has been just great. That said, I seriously will be searching for another vintage ride to enter this spring/summer. Or possibly putting one on as a Club, if there is sufficient interest?





    Yeeeesssss !



    I cleaned up my early 80s peugot super sport last night and headed to Creemore for Turas Mor this morning.

    To say the weather put a damper on the inaugral
    Vintage bike ride through the hilly gravel roads around creemore would be an understatement. Poured rain all morning, 8 degrees. It let up a bit at the start, false hope. Maybe a hundred of the 150 rider field started. Bag pipes leading the field round a loop of the town before heading out to the gravel and up the escarpment. Steady rain for the first hour. Reasonably miserable, then the cold front came through. Bitter wind, heavier rain and temperature drops 5 degrees.

    By this point we were arriving at the first rest stop: Terra Nova 20km. Most everyone quit here, myself included. I’ve done my share of poor weather rides this was just too cold and windy. The village pub provided welcome shelter. Pick up trucks and dutiful spouses (thank you to my wonderful wife) took us back to creemore. I would guess maybe 20 carried on and took the next short cut back to town (40km) ride and a few did the whole thing including big hills at the end (60km)

    The event was hosted by Creemore Brewery and run by multi sport. Frist class hosts all the way. Creemore started by refunding all the registrations. Multisport reorganized on the fly as the weather deteriorated. Made sure everyone got back safe. Creemore opened up the brewery after the tents blew away, eg even found a shower for people to use. Kept the beer flowing. Eager to please. Extremely accommodating.

    Food! Cured meats and lovely cheeses and smoothies at the rest stop and home made trail bars. Dandylion and smoked whitefish soup. Pulled pork. Mussel salad. Sourdough breads. Safe to say the spread they put out beats any bike event in these parts hands down.

    I was worried about getting an old bike around the course but it was fine. Biggest issue was lack of stopping power going downhills. Not sure if that was old technology, dried out pads or just the mud. I was surprised how many came out on modern bikes. I got mine at Tom’s bike shop in Carleton Place in 1987 or 88 but people tell me it is older so it must have been sitting in the shop for a few years before I showed up. I do remember choosing it because it was Canadian made. I notice the front wheel is different from the back when I was cleaning it. I have no recollection of why, funny what you forget. There was a guy today with exactly the same frame, he got his out of someone’s garbage.

    I would definitely recommend this event. The weather can only be better next year! They are looking for feedback and figuring out how to grow this and promote the vintage bike theme. The village vendors seemed to embrace theme. A celebration of cycling and local cusine rather than a hard core race (there was no timing). I think this could become something really worthwhile. Maybe we can get a group from the club next year.





    Good on Creemore to take it as an opportunity to take care of people so they spread the word and come back next year. Hopefully, I’ll be with you at the start next year.

    Give that bike a shine and post it here.



    People starting to talk about doing this again this year.

    James, Kevin, Mike and I rode it last year.


    As James would say, the only bike race with Charcuterie at the rest stops.





    Yes, charcutrie rest stops not to mention the homemade smoothies at the first stop and cold beer at the end!
    I signed up in December. Creemore sent me a $10 (10%) discount yesterday for being a WCC member. Just keeps getting better.
    Most fun you can have on a rusty Peugeot



    Hi all,

    New to the club this year and if I had seen this thread earlier I would have joined years ago! (Wasn’t sure if this thread is getting moved to the google forums so decided to just post here?).

    Great work on the Peugeot, Alain! I loved reading the effort you’ve put into restoring it. Would love to see it in person one day.

    I have a couple bikes from back in the day that I still ride and take care of regularly (**Pictures to follow later when i can figure out how to add them)

    Bike 1: 1988 (?1987?) Bianchi Campione d’Italia (as Joe C posted earlier) but in the mint green. (not sure it qualifies as ‘celeste’?)
    I still have the full spec Campagnolo Triomphe Derailleurs&shifters, Stronglight Crank, and Modolo brakes (minus the hood covers…rubber crumbled a few years ago). The Campy stuff is in bins as I have done a quick conversion to a fixed gear with this frame just because i was bored a few years ago.
    The bike came with (and i still have!) the exact same Ambrosio 19 Elite rims you show earlier in this thread! I’ve kept them built as they were in storage and replaced them with a cheap set of rims for my ‘fixie project’.

    Bike 2: 1990 Concorde Gavina (SL tubing…Ciocc made?) with complete Campy Chorus groupo (ya..the cranks with the curved arms!)
    I have the original spec tubular Wobler Profile 20 rims (campy chorus hubs) but I ride it with my old ‘trainer’ rims…Mavic Open 4CD with Campy Chorus hubs.
    It originally had the PDM Black/Grey/White fade paint job but the top tube had a fluorescent pink and yellow thin stripe in the black to white transition (hey, it was 1990!). I (stupidly) decided I didn’t like it back in 1992 and had the frame repainted with a black to yellow to red fade (i’m a merckx fan!) but i kept the chrome rear triangle and forks. I recently found Concorde Gavina decals online and am in the process of putting the name back on the bike (26 years after the re-paint!)
    I ride this bike more often than the Bianchi…it is like riding butter (if you like butter!).

    I have never heard of the Creemore ride you’re referring to…although looking at the ‘qualifying’ list of requirements, I don’t think either of my bikes make it.

    If there’s a WCC contingent riding this year, I’d love to join on the Concorde if possible? Is there a link?

    Cheers and SO glad to have stumbled across this thread.


    PS: is it sad that i still have my long sleeved PDM jersey and PDM gloves? I accidentally threw away my grey Look shoes about 10 years ago…but i still have the old red/white Look pedals! …and the pink “PDM” labeled Look pedals (1990 was an odd year)

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