Sunday, September 16, 2007

Fuji Find

While still waiting for my spokes to show up I went to a bike swap in Washington this weekend. There was a lot of really old stuff there, including some very cool 1880's and 1890's bikes. A couple had shaft drive which I think is really cool, and one of the bikes with shaft drive had three speeds with a multi-plate clutch. That was kind of cool to look at. Not much in the way of 30's-70's drop-bar bikes, but a lot of cruisers and kids bikes from that period. But I managed a few scores anyway.

The first was this as yet unidentified Fuji I picked up for $35. It's a nice and very light Japanese bike and I'm still trying to identify it. Possibly a 197 7 Fuji Newest. The bad repaint makes it hard to say for certain. It has had the wheels substituted for Schwinn equipment, but those are beautiful Rigida rims and some kind of fairly nice Japanese-made high flange hubs (perhaps Sanshin?). Nitto Olympiade handlebars and stem, and a nice SunTour Cyclone M-II rear derailleur. SR Apex cranks are forged, not swaged and are in great shape. It's not the touring bike I'm looking for and it's not Reynolds 531 (heck it's not even Euro), but it's a fun toy nonetheless. With those half-chromed stays and that curved, sloping front fork it looks almost French. The tubing appears to be double-butted Fuji 331 and without the cables and levers the bike appears to weight in at 21 pounds. It is on the small side for me, but we'll see how it rides.

I also picked up an insanely cheap ($10) like new Campagnolo Nuovo Record front derailleur and a nice set of Shimano 600EX arabesque cranks in very good condition ($8). I couldn't help grabbing a few others odds and ends, too. Looks like next weekend will be spent putting the Fuji on the road if my spokes don't arrive.


c-steve said...

Nice find! Wish we had bike swaps over here.

K Matthias said...

Hey Steve. Thanks! I'm thinking I'll strip it down and get it powdercoated this winter. I'm thinking either black or dark red would be nice. Sandblasting and powdercoating would run about $50 here which I think is a good deal. More than I paid for the bike, true, but would massively improve the appearance.

I wish we had more bike swaps. There aren't many.

c-steve said...

Can you get a metallic poedercoat? I´d leave the chrome if possible.
Have fun with the bike.

K Matthias said...

I don't know if you can get a metallic powdercoat. I can't say I've ever seen one, but that doesn't mean you can't. I'll have to ask. Don't know how much more that would cost. Oh yes, the chrome is staying! That's one of the coolest parts of the bike. :)

c-steve said...

I am sure its possible to get a metallic powdercoat. Wondering if your powdercoater can do it. 50$ is a real good deal. "Over here" it would be about 100$.
Don´t get run over by a car from behind crossing a intersection walking on the left side of the street! This is always frightening me in England.