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A Photographic and Video Record Of My Restoration and Refurbishment Adventures, So Novices Can Learn From My Successes and Failures.

My plan for this webpage is to build a visual library of vintage bicycle restoration and refurbishment from a novice's eye.  Each procedure will be thoroughly researched and will show what worked well or not so well for me.  I wish I had a similar resource before my first project which was my father's Peugeot AO8, instead of learning by trial and error.  A note of caution though; I never worked at a bicycle shop, so I am self-taught.
 
For my first recorded projects, I have chosen an early 1960s Peugeot PX10 that was well used and needs a lot of work, and a late 1960s UO8 with a frame in remarkably good condition.

Early 1960s PX10

I purchased this vintage Peugeot PX10 in the winter of 2009 from a nice gentleman in West Mifflin, PA who collects automobile memorabilia.  He found this pug at a garage sale and advertised its sale on Craigslist with very little narrative and no photos.  Luckily, I was the first caller and after questioning him about its features, I immediately visited and purchased the bicycle.  Based on the decal scheme and original components (the handlebar and brake levers are not original) I believe this is a 1961 or 1962 PX10.  This PX10 pre-dates the well known seat tube checkerboard racing decal, the Stronglight Super Competition 63 crankset, and the Simplex Prestige 532 rear derailleur, all introduced around 1963.  The 22-inch Reynolds 531 frame (serial number 959443) with Simplex dropouts came equipped with the following parts:  generic chrome handlebar, Ava handlebar stem, Stronglight Competition headset, Weinmann brake levers, Mafac Racer brake calipers, JUY Export 61 shift levers, Simplex cable guides, Stronglight Super Competition 57 (170, 52x45) crankset with Stronglight 93 ‘passenger-side’ crank-arm, Simplex LJ23 front derailleur, Simplex JUY Export 61 Luxe rear derailleur, Cyclo 14x26 freewheel, Lyotard 460 pedals, New Star hubs (rear with Simplex quick-release skewer), Rigida Chrolux Chromage Superieur steel rims, and Ideale 59 saddle with 59 Duralumin frame.  Although the wheel sets are not consistent with the early Franklin Imports flyers, they are the same as on other PX10s in the United States from the early 1960s.  See Joshua Putnam’s unrestored 1963 PX10 (http://www.phred.org/~josh/bike/px10/PX10.html).

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Late 1960s UO8

I purchased this vintage Peugeot UO8 on December 26th, 2010 from Christopher of ‘homelessbikes’ based in Jackson, NJ.  He is bike dealer who sells many used bikes in the New York City area as a side venture.  Christopher is a pleasure to deal with and his contact information is on my ‘Favorite Links’ webpage.  Based on the decal scheme and notoriously unreliable Peugeot serial number (839946), I believe this UO8 is of late 1960s to very early 1970s vintage.  There were a number of components (i.e., brake levers, brake calipers, front wheel and front derailleur) replaced over the years, so they are of no value in determining its age.  The Simplex 637 rear derailleur introduced in 1971 may not be original equipment because it is not matched with the all metal Simplex 2337 shift levers found on this UO8.  Rather, these shift levers were matched with the Simplex 537 rear derailleur.  The 21-inch Special Allege frame came equipped with the following parts: Ava chrome handlebar, Ava handlebar stem, Mafac ‘drillium-style’ brake levers, Weinmann 605 side-pull brake calipers, Simplex all metal shift levers, Nervar durax 3-pin steel crankset (50x36 ‘mountain gearing’), Shimano Altus front derailleur, Simplex 637 rear derailleur, Atom 14-28 freewheel, Lyotard 36 pedals, Normandy high-flange rear hub, Rigida Chrolux 27x1-1/4 rear rim, KT front hub, Van Schothorst (04/95) 18 x 680 (27x1-1/4) chrome front rim, Gellite saddle, and steel seatpost.

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1972 AO8

My dad's 1972 AO8 was my first restoration and the adventure is archived below.

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Dismantled 1972 AO8

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Cable Reassembly
Luckily, my local bike shop had old new old stock white Schwinn rear brake cables and housing available.  I used the housing for routing both the brake and shift cables.  Adjusting the brakes and derailleurs was straighforward following Zinn's text.
8:12 am est

Freewheel Removal and Axles
The Cyclo freewheel was easily removed using an original Cyclo freewheel tool purchased from Bikeville.com.  Apparently, the Park freewheel tools do not fit.  As a precaution, I used a nut and washer on the axle to hold the tool against the freewheel to avoid stripping the notches in the freewheel core, as recommended by both Sheldon Brown http://sheldonbrown.com/freewheels.html and by Zinn's text.  I chose not to attempt a freewheel disassembly which is discouraged by Sheldon Brown.  Axles were thoroughly cleaned, repacked using Phil Wood's Waterproof Grease, and tightened following Zinn's text.
8:10 am est

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Cleaning the Derailleurs and Brakes
Simple Green and a toothbrush works well, although a fair amount of elbow grease is needed.  I also used Old Roads bike cleaning kit http://oldroads.com/clean_kit.html (bronze wool and 'Menotomy Mixture') to 'smooth' the metal parts.
9:48 pm est

Rebuilding the Headset
Rebuilding the headset following Zinn & The Art of Road Bike Maintenance was a breeze compared to rebuilding the bottom bracket.  The top set of ball bearings were fixed in a race, while the bottom set were loose.  As with the bottom bracket, I re-used the ball bearings and used Phil Wood's Waterproof Grease.  Not too difficult to get the right tightness.
9:47 pm est

Stubborn Cotters Re-visited
Be sure to purchase the Peugeot-cut cotters sold by Harris Cyclery.  Even with these, I had to file the cotters to get the right fit using a flat file and vice as described by Sheldon Brown in his 'newer' Tool Tips Cottered Cranks article http://www.sheldonbrown.com/cotters.html.  I am glad I purchased the cotter press, because I had the cotters in and out at least a dozen times.  Even now, the cranks are about 5 degrees off of 180 degrees.  I will take it!
9:43 pm est

Bottom Bracket Rebuild
No problem re-building bottom bracket.  I squirted LPS-3 Heavy Duty Rust Inhibitor into the tubes.  I then inserted an accordian-like bottom bracket sleeve, purchased from Harris Cyclery, to prevent crud from the tubes getting to the bearings.  I used Phil Wood's Waterproof Grease and re-used the loose ball bearings to re-pack the bracket.  I also purchased a modified Horzan Hook Spanner from Harris Cyclery to tighten the lock ring.  Sheldon Brown's 'safe cracker' technique http://www.sheldonbrown.com/tooltips/bbadj.html worked well for getting the lock ring and adjustable cup just right.
9:29 pm est

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Even More Stubborn Fixed Cup
The headset and bottom bracket, except for the fixed cup were easily removed from the bicycle.  I tried a variety of techniques to remove the fixed cup including heating with a blow torch, and using a large crescent wrench and hammer combination to no avail.  I then read Sheldon Brown's 'Tool Tips' article on 'Bottom Bracket Cups' http://www.sheldonbrown.com/tooltips/bbcups.html and learned that for my reburbishment project I shouldn't be removing the fixed cup, and furthermore I was using the wrong methods.  Consequently, I have decided to read all of Sheldon Brown's "Tools Tips' articles http://www.sheldonbrown.com/tooltips/index.html before continuing with this project.
6:22 pm est

Friday, January 5, 2007

Stubborn Cotter Pins
Sheldon Brown indicates that cotter pin removal can be one of the most challenging hurdles to overcome when disassembling a bicycle, and I can now attest to that.  I purchased a cotter pin press from Bike Smith Design & Fabrication http://bikesmithdesign.com/CotterPress/index.html.  It worked well on the non-drive side crank arm, but the drive-side cotter pin was too stubborn and the threaded-end of the pin snapped off.  I then used Sheldon's hammer and pipe technique, substituting for the pipe a 2"x4" wooden stud with a hole drilled in the end to receive the pin head.  This approach also did not work.  Lastly, I purchased 1/8" and 1/4" DeWalt cobalt split and pilot point drill bits and drilled the cotter pin out.  This was not too difficult once I had the right bits in hand.
9:12 am est

Tools
I decided to purchase some bike-specific tools for the project and to maintain my other bicycles.  I went with Park's Advanced Mechanic's Tool Kit.  Nice set of tools, but does not come with a torque wrench, toothed lockring spanner, or pin spanner, all of which I would like to have.
8:52 am est

Monday, January 1, 2007

Reference Documents
Since I am a bicycle mechanic novice, I needed reference texts and manuals before embarking on my restoration project.  I recommend Lennard Zinn's "Zinn and The Art of Road Bike Maintenance," published by Velo Press.  It is excellent with lots of illustrations and easily understood narrative.  Also, Sheldon Brown's and Tom Kunich's articles on maintaining, upgrading and modernizing French bicycles are invaluable and available on the Harris Cyclery website.
1:20 pm est

2007.03.01 | 2007.02.01 | 2007.01.01

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This website was last updated 3 November 2011