Identify this frame

Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking

Identify this frame

Postby nickobec » Thu May 07, 2009 1:20 am

Picked up this frame recently, it had been sanded back to bare metal and brush painted a shade of purple. So no chance of an easy identification. The original paint job was mustard over white, from the small amount found near the headset.
It is reasonable quality steel frame for 700c with a 26.4mm seat post , suntour gtIV drop outs and cable routing attached to the frame.
I don't know what components on the bike where original, my guess the tange BB and headset and the chrome forks with suntour drop outs.

The frame is very similar, particularly with the cable guides, lugs and 26.4mm seat post to a Repco Nishiki Olympic 12 speed.
The differences 700c vs 27", 1 instead of 2 bidon mounts and no drain holes in the chain stays.

Looks like a Gordonson I saw last weekend. The cable guides and lugs look the same as does the single bidon mounts, 700c wheels and tange headset. That Gordonson was red over white and I remember seeing yellow/mustard and white Gordonsons in the past. But the red Gordson did have chain adjusters and painted forks.

So my pick is a late 80's Nishiki frame supplied to Gordonsons or another Australian "manufacturer". Anybody else have an opinion?

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by BNA » Thu May 07, 2009 2:04 pm

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Re: Identify this frame

Postby rustychisel » Thu May 07, 2009 2:04 pm

looks very similar to an old Ricardo I had; very similar, in particular brazeons, and that gear changer stud top centred on downtube.

Adelaide brazed, Tange No 5 tubing, made in about 1983, ah, here we are

http://www.dbmagazine.com.au/cyclo/Ricardo.Fixie.jpg

I kissed it goodbye after this happened... http://www.dbmagazine.com.au/cyclo/cracked!.jpg
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Re: Identify this frame

Postby hartleymartin » Thu May 07, 2009 5:42 pm

rustychisel wrote:looks very similar to an old Ricardo I had; very similar, in particular brazeons, and that gear changer stud top centred on downtube.

Adelaide brazed, Tange No 5 tubing, made in about 1983, ah, here we are

http://www.dbmagazine.com.au/cyclo/Ricardo.Fixie.jpg

I kissed it goodbye after this happened... http://www.dbmagazine.com.au/cyclo/cracked!.jpg


Ouch! It's a real shame. But since it was a lugged frame you could have had it repaired if you were determined, but probably not economically viable.
Martin Christopher Hartley

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Re: Identify this frame

Postby brauluver » Thu May 07, 2009 6:06 pm

I had a frame with a permanently stuck seat post awhile back with those drop outs.it was a giant built repco monaco.does it feel like cro mo?
Weigh it maybe.
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Re: Identify this frame

Postby brauluver » Thu May 07, 2009 6:17 pm

http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=390318

Looking at this info it would seem that the L in the serial # makes it neither nishiki or giant.
have a look and decide for yourself.
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Re: Identify this frame

Postby nickobec » Thu May 07, 2009 11:39 pm

Got it wrong, Nishiki is a brand of bicycles in the US and Canada, that was manufactured by Kawamura in Japan and by Giant in Taiwan.

So you need to substitute Kawamura for Nishiki in the above post.

In other words:
The frame is very similar, particularly with the cable guides, lugs and 26.4mm seat post to a Repco Nishiki Olympic 12 speed manufactured by Kawamura
The differences 700c vs 27", 1 instead of 2 bidon mounts and no drain holes in the chain stays.

Looks like a Gordonson I saw last weekend. The cable guides and lugs look the same as does the single bidon mounts, 700c wheels and tange headset. That Gordonson was red over white and I remember seeing yellow/mustard and white Gordonsons in the past. But the red Gordson did have chain adjusters and painted forks.

So my pick is a late 80's Kawamura frame supplied to Gordonsons or another Australian "manufacturer". Anybody else have an opinion?


Note the Nishiki and Repco range was very similar during the 80s.
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Re: Identify this frame

Postby rustychisel » Fri May 08, 2009 10:21 am

hartleymartin wrote:Ouch! It's a real shame. But since it was a lugged frame you could have had it repaired if you were determined, but probably not economically viable.


No, but yes, but no.
If you look carefully you can see a buildup of the weld where the crack is; it had previously been repaired around the lug (under warranty about 14 years after the bike was built, another story but good service!!) then the repair weld failed, cracking through the repair, the lug, and the seatube, so comprehensively that the seat tube moved 10mm laterally under pedalling load.
Funnily enough I noticed it when sprinting away from traffic lights and wondered why the frame was quite literally a noodle... rode home carefully that day, I can tell you.
Anyway, even Gripsport said it was the end of the road for that particular frame... shame, because it did make a pretty nice fixed gear and I'd done a lot of k's on that bike.
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Re: Identify this frame

Postby uMP2k » Fri May 08, 2009 11:59 am

nickobec wrote:...

Note the Nishiki and Repco range was very similar during the 80s.



That is because the Repco's were just re-branded Nishikis. For some of most of this period the Repcos did not use the "Nishiki" in the model naming - just being "repco Olymic 12" or "Repco Superlite", but for about 1 or 2 model years they put Nishiki in the names. I believe this was due to some sort of contractual issue.

Anyway, as to your specific frame. The drop outs and braze ons for the waterbottle are very similiar to my Repco "Nishiki" Tri-A from about 1984. But it does look very very much like that Ricardo!
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Re: Identify this frame

Postby nickobec » Fri May 08, 2009 7:03 pm

uMP2k wrote:The drop outs and braze ons for the waterbottle are very similiar to my Repco "Nishiki" Tri-A from about 1984. But it does look very very much like that Ricardo!

And also very much like a certain Gordonson.

I believe this frame came from the Kawamura factory in Japan around 1985. Kawamura manufactured frames for Nishiki, Repco and probably countless other brands.

It is probably not a Repco, their serial numbers seem to be similar to the [url=http://www.stevevance.net/nishiki/Serial_Number_Database
]Nishiki serials [/url]. The Recpo Nishiki Olympic 12 in the shed serial is AD01193 (A for Australia, just like C is for Canada and K is for USA market).

It could be a Ricardo, but most of the ones I have seen are metallic blue, the original paint job here is mustard yellow over white, which has me thinking Gordonson. But it could of been any brand that had it's frames built by Kawamura in Japan in the mid eighties.

The serial number L6A1761 is really the only clue.
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Now in Bistro orange

Postby nickobec » Tue May 19, 2009 11:30 pm

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Just been powdercoated "bistro orange" and on it's way to being built up as a singlespeed.

Out of interest frame weight is under 2.4kg forks just over 0.8kg which compares to 2.6kg and 0.9kg for my Repco/Gaint Olympic 12 speed.
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