Rusty wheel spokes, and identifying a crank set

Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking

Rusty wheel spokes, and identifying a crank set

Postby Seele » Fri May 11, 2007 1:17 pm

Hi everyone,

New member here; glad to find this forum.

After a break of 25 years I am getting back into bikes; rather than diving in at the deep end I am sticking to the types I was familiar with. Right now I am rebuilding a Repco Traveller in black which pretty much used all steel components, mostly rusted away, and my barrel of better period parts should do a good job taking their places.

Two questions:

I always liked the Belgian-made Weinmann 27 X 1 1/4 rims and have a pair of wheels built out of these to be used. Too bad the spokes are getting a bit rusty, but I really would like to use them. Rebuilding the wheels using stainless steel spokes would be the long-term solution but the cost would be much greater than the $120 I was quoted for a pair of new alloys with stainless steel spokes. To get rid of the rust is that just going to be elbow grease mixed with emery cloth and steel wool? When the rust has been removed then what should I do to keep it from returning?

To replace the rusted steel crank set I have an old alloy one but I cannot find who made it: no name engraved but only a logo stamped in the shape of three crossed arrows. It's a one-piece design, and the smaller chainring is attached by three bolts rather than five.

Thank you in advance for your insights.
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by BNA » Fri May 11, 2007 1:34 pm

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Postby europa » Fri May 11, 2007 1:34 pm

Rusty spokes? Ignore them until they start breaking. Seriously. My son's on Gitane did a lot of work with rusty spokes, including being redished twice (it went from a geared bike to a fixie for the track and back again). I've replaced three spokes in all that, one of which was broken before I started.

How about rebuilding the wheels yourself? Save a bit of cash (about half maybe) and have some fun while you're at it.

If you go from 27" wheels to 700c, the current standard, you will be changing to wheels that are about 5mm smaller in radius (not diameter).This means you'll have to drop your brake pads by about that much so make sure you can (I just can't quite).

27" tyres can be hard to get, but I've managed it without a problem - was lucky that the first shop I tried had them. I'm seeing more and more old bikes on the roads so perhaps it won't be so much of an issue.

Best of luck with the old girl - they can be fun and if you get silly and buy a new bike, they make great fixies :D

Richard
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Postby 531db » Fri May 11, 2007 2:31 pm

Woo Hoo, my 100th post and how appropriate it's "Retro" and something I can type heaps of drivel about :D

The three crossed arrows identify Takagi of Japan. It sounds by the described bolt pattern, that you have one of Takagi's close copies of a 1970's Sugino Maxy crankset. Good news is that inner chainrings are interchangable with Sugino. Bad news is that Takagi used an unusual taper bottom bracket axle that is neither JIS or 'Campagnolo' , and it is probable that your cranks will be loose and bottom out on the bb cups if you do not have an original Takagi axle.

Re the spokes, attach them with one of those green plastic pot scrub things, then wipe the spokes down with a lightly oiled rag, taking care not to get oil on the rims etc. The shine will become dull, but should not rust again too quickly.

Going out for a ride on the Falcon fixie now with the Sugino Maxy version of the above mentioned crankset, with a changeable outer ring (49t atm, with a 18t cog = 73.5 gear inches).
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Postby uMP2k » Fri May 11, 2007 2:43 pm

For cleaning your spokes (and any other rusty bits!) you might want to check out this thread for information about using Wood Bleach.
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Postby cludence » Fri May 11, 2007 5:28 pm

Wood bleech works wonders with no elbow grease required. If you are anywhere near the Western Sydney area I should have a set of wheels in better condition if you want them.

Karen.
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Postby Seele » Sat May 12, 2007 12:25 am

Thank you everyone for your ideas!

Richard, modern apartment living does not play very well with undertaking something like wheel building; I suppose I can only handle things with tools which can fit into the bottom kitchen cupboard drawer! Besides I do not really know if I have the competence and confidence to handle that. Sure I was quite able to bolt a bike together using new parts but stripping an old rusty one is already presenting a bit of a challenge already: have to figure out how to remove the cranks and bottom bearing since the former units seems to be quite stuck at the moment... :(

Another local shop quoted me $174 to get both wheels rebuilt with stainless steel spokes so it's another option... costlier but authentic nonetheless.

Oddly enough I found 27 X 1 1/4 tyres easily available; a local bike shop has a choice of three types from India at about $13 each, Big W has Repco ones from Thailand at about the same price, but the Huffy-brand at Kmart seems to be the best at $17 each; another local bike shop charges $42 each and that's perhaps in the silly-money category. The $120 per F/R pair of all alloy wheels with stainless spokes, quoted by the shop are of 27 X 1 1/4 size so that would not be a problem with getting the replacement black-finished Weinmann brake calipers over-extended anyway.

I rather missed my old bike when living in the old country, built by Sid Mottram of Leicester so I am building this up to about the same specifications for nostalgia purpose, even though I have a more modern sports bike built by Clarence Street... but waiting for Shimano to deliver parts for the Dura Ace derailleur. By the way, have you noticed how hard it is to find full-size Bluemels or comparable mudguards?

531db, thanks for the information on Takagi; my "eyeballing" sure seems nowhere as good as it used to be. I wonder if I can find a Takagi bottom bracket axle or another cheapie old crankset, or just get a friend to machine a spacer sleeve... which option sounds more appealing... and economical? Anyone throwing out a decent crankset? :D

uMP2k and Karen, I checked that forum thread and it only mentioned soaking the rusty part in the solution but I am not sure if I should fill a big tub of it and dump the whole wheel inside. And Karen, I might want to take up your offer; I am on the North Shore so it should not be a terrible bother for me to make a little trip and see what we can come up with.
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Postby europa » Sat May 12, 2007 12:35 am

Follow up with Karen mate, she really loves her old bikes and if there's a way to make yours super ultra spiffy, she knows it.

Glad to hear the 27" tyres are available. I was surprised when people started telling me they were hard to get ... though surprise is nothing new for me when it comes to bikes.

Wheel rebuilding? I haven't done it yet and when I do, intend to do it on the bike ... because I'm too ikey to buy or make a wheel building stand. All you need is a spoke wrench. I understand what you mean about it being scary - I'm only so confident about it now because the job is months away for me and can be postponed indefinitely - you watch the excuses come out as I get closer to actually having to do it :roll:

I understand your emotional attachment to the old girl too. There is little rational in my regard for my Europa, yet she's the sweetheart of my fleet. Not my first bike, not my last, not even my first 'adult' bike, another old bike (long lost now) gets that honour. But that green beast has been with me for twenty years now ... and I just keep tinkering with her.

Richard
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Postby Seele » Sat May 12, 2007 12:57 am

Richard,

I know how that goes very well, so regarding your wheel building adventure... do it now! do it now! :lol:

The Mottram is long gone... 22 years in fact. But it got me to and from college through rain and shine - and it could rain in Leicester, believe me - not forgetting one particular winter when it snowed three times: snowed, thawed, snowed, thawed... you know how that goes. My housemates built a snowman in the middle of the street before our shared house and it was still there after two days! Anyway I am not being too pedantic, or I would have not only demanded Weinmann brakes and rims but also Sachs-Huret derailleurs and Brooks Professional saddle, and weeks of agony in my posterior too!

Perhaps it is a good thing for us to like these older road and sports bikes; I had a try at a MTB a little while ago and found the experience "interesting"... and no desire to repeat that. Even sold my hand-me-down Skykomish MTB with full Tange frame and Shimano STI to a friend of a friend for $20, and she had a bargain even though she spent $160 getting it fixed up: as she pushed it into her bike shop the techician's eyeballs fell out: it's good to make someone happy heh?
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Postby cludence » Sat May 12, 2007 1:05 am

Hi,

I am not sure if this is an old bike of yours you are specifically wanting to get back on the road or one you have simply picked up with the aim of fixing it up?

I have a road bike here that you may prefer and you are welcome to it if it suits your size. If you wish to fix up the one you have, I have 27inch wheels here, brakes and some cranks etc.

Peter (531db) is the old bike expert not me. I'm still learning whilst I play with the collection I have here. I do have a collection of older parts available and quite often have the repco travellers come through as well.

You are welcome to have a look and I can show you how the wood bleech works. I have a tub with parts in it all the time. This stuff is incredible.


Karen.
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Postby Seele » Sat May 12, 2007 1:36 am

Karen,

I guess it is more like I am always looking for a realistic challenge more than recreating my old Mottram, with a specific eye on keeping it reasonably true to the spirit of the early 80s while keeping cost down. Sure it is easy to throw money at it and get brand new parts etc, but if that be the case we'd just be as well start with a spanking new frame anyway.

That is why I am trying to substitute the dead old part with that barrel of reasonably period pieces I have... too bad about that Takagi crankset :(

We have to find a time to get together soon and compare notes! Please check your schedule and let me know; my time is reasonably flexible. Thanks :)
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Postby cludence » Sat May 12, 2007 11:18 am

I am pretty flexible with time so let me know when is best for you. I have some old weinman brakes here, not sure on weinman rims but I will have a look. I have a fair bit from the 80's era so I am sure there will be enough to get your bike on the road. Not sure if I have the takagi cranks but I think I may have a set of the sugino ones here from that era.

Karen.
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Postby Seele » Sat May 12, 2007 2:24 pm

Thanks Karen; PM sent.
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Postby Mulger bill » Sat May 12, 2007 7:18 pm

G'Day Seele.

If I can butt in on the wheel rebuilding thing...

A coffee table, a roll of duct tape and a spoke key are all the tools you need.
The duct tape (or similar) is purely for laying the wheel on while you work.

Replace the spokes one at a time, following the original lacing. Work alternate sides, in different directions. If you counted the nipple off, screw the new one on one turn less. Take your time, recheck regularly and you should be OK.

Once you've done that, take the wheel to the LBS for truing, :wink:

Good luck with the project mate.

Shaun
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Postby Seele » Mon May 14, 2007 3:08 am

Shaun,

What a great idea... might go for that. Where is LBS by the way?
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Postby europa » Mon May 14, 2007 9:01 am

Seele wrote:Where is LBS by the way?


Local Bike Shop - permission granted to feel as silly as everyone else does when they first trip over this term :D (it took me a week to work it out :roll: )

Richard
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Postby Seele » Mon May 14, 2007 2:06 pm

Richard, it would have taken the rest of my life to figure that out! :lol:
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