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Hybrid Leftys aren't real
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I have a lead on one locally (whodathunkit?) Issue is, while I lust after the welds, I have no experience with them otherwise. Any input? Issues common I should look for, etc.

Also curious what you may have paid frame or bike, it's within my comfort zone, but digging around eBarf etc gave me zilch in terms of past valuations. I'd hate to find out after the fact that I should have lowballed the guy. Yeah, I know, kinda WIW, but in reverse of the norm, based on going prices for oddball uncommon bikes, it seems reasonable to me.......

Thanks all!
 

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Check the Der hanger. I always thought the way they were riveted on kinda was a pain. With a little creativity, you can get around this. Release the rear QR and see if it is loose, if it is, jiggle it a bit in front of the seller to get him to lower the price. You can sneak nut and bolts in there instead although you may have to file a bit.
 

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Certified Bike Junkie
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bmxcollector said:
The one that just ended on Ebay had no action at a $485 buy it now.
He's been gradually lowering the price over the last couple months. I'm a little surprised no one hit it $485.
 

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Maybe the shipping is throwing people off? I think the bike at the price is a pretty fair deal. Looks to be in very nice condition.
 

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Harmonius Wrench
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Used to be a lot of those around here, since American was a Mid-western based company, (St. Cloud, Minnesota) They held up quite well, and the military spec anodization was awesome. They also did polished frames, which I didn't think were as cool.

I have no idea on collectability, but I assume that some of the anodized colors they did might be rarer than others. I know they did an olive green, dark-teal-ish blue, and perhaps some others.

Overall, I was impressed with them.

The hangars are a pain, but we had good luck getting a local machinest to make us new ones back in the day for our locals that had Americans.
 

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MendonCycleSmith said:
...while I lust after the welds ...
Yep the welds are nice too look at. :)

 

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Hybrid Leftys aren't real
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16,395 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
laffeaux said:
Yep the welds are nice too look at. :)

Thanks for all the input guys, both here and via PM. I saw that one on eBay, but felt that one data point wasn't enough, I feel better informed now....

laffeaux, funny you post that pic, it's one of my desk top pics in rotation, just delicious :cool:
 

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Ahhhh

Love the way they have the cables routed. More yummy welds by American.

Photobucket
 

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defender of bad taste
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I don't have a retro aluminum bike - but when the time comes it's between a TG/Rascal or one of these. Beautiful bikes.
 

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The Bus.

this photo has to be older than like 1992 because that is in my old house boat.
 

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Look for the slotted cable stop frames., I think there were three variations of cable stops: Riveted, welded non-slotted, welded slotted. The later frames had the slotted stops AND removable derailleur hanger. The early frames had neither. Welds are just as nice on ALL frames though!

As you know, the slotted stops are nicer for maintenance but additionally tend to have less cable drag than the second rev ones (the riveted ones weren't too bad) just due to the design of the non slotted ones used on the early frames.

Removable rear derailleur hanger is nice but impossible to get now and can be an issue if the rivet holes get enlarged. Always make sure the rivets are nice and tight and don't let them get loose!! That's when people start having problems. Once the rivet hole is enlarged you can never get the rivets to stay tight. I like to use stainless rivets instead of the original aluminum ones, they hold up much better.

 

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Order a few before they dissapear again. (I still have three originals in my parts bin saved over the years for the tandem).

I am not affiliated with R/E (bought my tandem and first Comp Lite there many years ago)but this is good beta for American owners who come across this thread in search of a der hanger:

A Blast From the Past....

Back in the late 1980's we sold a Rodriguez aluminum tandem that was made for us by American Mfg. It was called the Rodriguez AL26. The tandems were beautiful polished (or brushed) aluminum and incorporated a replaceable tab on the rear drop out for mounting the derailleur on (the same one that American used on their aluminum bikes). A problem arose several years ago when the replaceable part became 'no longer available'. I originally had an emergency batch of them made by a machine shop in Oregon, but we ran out of those, and then that machine shop went out of business.
I always wanted to update and improve the design of this part anyway. It was originally machined with pretty loose tolerances, and bent easier than it should. The derailleur was too low, and too far forward so it was difficult to remove and reinstall the wheel with the skewer in the hub. As people brought in these old bikes to upgrade them to modern shifting, the derailleur was too far forward to shift well.
Well, our machine shop is running so smoothly this year that I decided that we should try and make a batch ourselves. I located someone who had one of the tandems in question, and borrowed it for a while. We now have an improved model of this part in stock for those of you who have one of these tandems (or an old American Mfg. bike). This one is lighter weight, and addresses the shifting issue as well as the wheel removal issue.

Cost is $39.99. To purchase one email me

 
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