Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking
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THE Pearl White Apollo VI
The pearl white Apollo VI is my bike which I purchased brand new in late 1984 from Balwyn Cycles in Victoria and have owned ever since. A series of photos pre-restoration are available for viewing on the following link:
http://s1301.photobucket.com/user/class ... pollo%20VI
The frame consists of Ishiwata Chromoly double butted tubing and is the Glories Victory 019 tube set. (019 was used to identify the complete tube set which weighed 1.9kg). The group set on the bike is Suntour Superbe Pro (SSP) first generation. All of the SSP components feature in the Suntour catalogues as Superbe Pro however, none of the components are labled as Superbe Pro, just Superbe. The first generation SSP was a friction only shifter set and the brake levers were non-areo and had drilled levers. The hubs were the best money could buy and are magnificently smooth. All of the components within the group set are finished to exceptionally high standards and the machining tolerances were very, very precise. Suntour (Maeda Industries) at the time was amongst the front runners of Japanese industry and had a great influence in breaking the "Japjunk" stigma which was common around the late 70s and early 80s. I believe Suntour manufactured mainly derailleurs and shifter sets and freewheels but they did outsource the manufacture of other components to other Japanese manufacturers under very tight design and quality controls. Subsequently the entire SSP group set is made to the highest standards of design, function, and finish.
My pearl white Apollo VI had the following components when new and I have listed who the respective parts were manufactured by to the best of my knowledge:
SSP brakes manufactured by Dia-comp;
SSP alloy headset manufactured by Hatta ( is a Suntour stamped Hatta Swan Deluxe head set);
SSP alloy cup sealed bearing chainline adjustable bottom bracket set ( uncertain but probably manufactured by Hatta);
SSP Fr & Rr derailleurs - Friction with shifters ( these shifters were used on other sets within the Suntour range);
Suntour Winner Ultra six speed freewheel 13-18;
SSP sealed bearing hubs manufactured by Sansin ( Sansin was marketed as Sunshine);
Araya World Champion tubular rims;
National Panaracer tubular tyres;
SSP Classic (style) Crank set 42T-52T manufactured by Sugino;
SSP sealed bearing pedals:
SR Sakae alloy toe clips with Sakae toe straps:
HKK Nickel and black chain;
Nitto Pearl 9 headstem;
Nitto Olympiade 115 handlebars (450mm width);
SR Laprade seat post 26.8mm;
Kashimax Five Gold white saddle.
The Apollo VI as can be seen in some of the photos was showing signs it was in need of some TLC. So I built something for me to ride in the meantime.
http://s1301.photobucket.com/user/class ... Super%20BH
(Please refer to Cinelli in Retro Bikes for that story.)
Once that bike was finished, I dismantled the Apollo VI for a full restoration/refurbishment. I decided to upgrade some of the components with younger SSP bits to sweeten things up a little. I also had to decide on what to do about decals as I had been unable to find any of the Apollo VI decals and I wasn’t prepared to leave the frame blank. After many hours on the internet, I decided upon a set of Nagasawa decals.
So it is no longer badged as an Apollo and some ( faithful to the marque) might consider this point somewhat sac-religious as now it was neither truly identified as an Apollo VI nor genuine Nagasawa. I decided to put Nagasawa decals on the frame as they are gold and are fairly consistent with the original Apollo VI colour scheme. So to those who might be offended, please accept my apologies. Nagasawa however, is the maker of fine handmade Kieren track racing frames in Japan and the application of these decals pays homage to those frames as well. I fully admit that this is an Apollo VI frame built by Kuwahara from Ishiwata 019 tube and lugs with Superbe drop-outs. Nagasawa also made the odd road frame here and there but is mostly noted for his Kieren frames. "Imitation is the highest form of praise". Having said that, this is a quality bike in any case irrespective of what decal set adorns it. The decals have been placed on the frame consistent with Nagasawa san's placement application.
Some might frown upon the Look pedals and the new style saddle but this bike is racing bike and I do race it in Masters “B” grade so I consider some compromises are acceptable.
The following items which have been upgraded (being faithful to Suntour) are Superbe Pro.
Hidden spring brake calipers;
Indexed Rear Derailleur;
Later model clamp on Front Derailleur;
New 6/7 speed index shifters & cables;
New chainrings 42T/52T
New hubs 32H;
The following items have also been fitted:
Look Keo Carbon Blade Ti pedals;
New Selle Italia saddle;
NOS Mavic Argent 10 tubular rims 32H and SS double butted spokes;
New Veloflex Sprinter tubular tyres;
NOS Suntour Winner 13-18T freewheel;
New chain Whipperman Connex full nickel;
New bearing catridges to bottom bracket;
New ball bearings to head set.
Colour: Subaru Arctic White Pearl Code: 36J
Photos of the completed restoration can be viewed on the following link:
http://s1301.photobucket.com/user/class ... incarnated
If there's something you can do about it, do it. If theres nothing you can do, don't worry.
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