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  • An eBay steel - 16/06/2022

    All three of my bikes are now quite nice. Too nice to leave on the street. It's a good problem to have, as they say. Coming back from hybrid working, I've started commuting again, albeit once or twice a week. We have a bike room at work, so I can ride a nice bike to the office, but I fear the paintwork getting ruined by other cyclists moving their bikes in and out. I must admit, I've started to pack some pipe lagging in my back to protect my tubes. That's when I knew I had to do something. I also want to be able to cycle to a meeting or go out in the evening on my bike and be able to leave it on the street without fear.

    So, I gave myself a brief to find a bike that I wouldn't have a breakdown if it got jacked, but was still fun to ride. And success - I managed to pick up this old steel Peugeot racer from eBay for £60. Not so very much wrong with it. I guess it's from the Eighties, without the decals I can't say which model. It's 7-speed and has eyelets for mudguards. Where the decals had been removed, there was loads of sticky residue left on the frame. A good tip for sticker glue removal is to spray with WD-40 and wipe off.

    The biggest issue for this bike - and probably why I got it for £60 - was that the cranks had been cross-threaded, so it was either repair or replace them. Someone had really gone to town trying to put a pedal in the wrong way and the hole was seriously widened. So, I opted for the latter solution as it was a chance to reduce the 52/42 chainrings to compact (50/36) and soften up the 13-23 cassette for commuting.

    I got a new chainset from SJS Cycles for £40 and added some Deda bar tape for £8. There really wasn't that much to do on it. The tyres, brake pads, bottom bracket are all good, cables good and chain not stretched, nor the cassette worn. The wheel bearings are good, just a very slight kink in the rear wheel, which I can address later. I had a spare Brooks Cambrian saddle and a frame pump hanging about in my bike shed to finish it off.

    Thanks and praise to the ever-useful The Bike Book from Haynes, which I am always referring back to for various jobs on the bike. I especially look for things I don't do that often, such as the crank removal I've just done, bottom bracket and front mech readjustment.

    Now, I must remember not to get too attached this bike (or upgrade it further) and remind myself its purpose is to be left on the street and not worried about...


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