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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Am doing some work on an older bike -- a Giant Rincon -- for a friend. Not sure how old her bike is, but it's old enough to have some parts I've never seen before:

* Biopace chainrings. I've read about these in fairy-tales and legends. I guess they actually exist. ;)

* Shimano-brand, thumb-activated shifters on the bar. These are indexed-shifters with two buttons for your thumb to push. I thought SRAM had invented that approach, but I guess not.

* A quick-release fork without lawyer lips. First time I can recall seeing one of those.

* A cumbersome, clip-style, hub retention system that involves two clips that slide onto the axle like washers, and that have to be positioned just right in order to function.

* Brake levers with hoods that hide the clamp screw. Took me awhile to sort out how to remove them.

The retention clips are interesting. I'll try and post a photo when I can. The clips hook around two screws that mount into fork braze-ons, one on either fork leg. The clips were not even close to correctly configured when I took the bike from my friend. They strike me as the sort of thing that most people would toss aside.

Anyway, cool stuff. The rest of the bike is the typical sort of thing you see on older bikes: derailer bolts requiring box-end wrenches, phillips screws on the shifter clamps, cup-and-cone bottom-bracket, quill stem, that sort of thing.
 

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Wow, this post made me feel old... that sounds like most of the bikes I saw when I was wrenching in college. The shop I worked in didn't sell Giant, but I swear we saw so many of those things that it isn't funny! Good stuff!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Some photos

I grabbed some photos for your viewing pleasure.

The Biopace rings:
Spoke Crankset Transport Bicycle drivetrain part Bicycle part


Those Shimano-brand, thumb-activated, index shifters:
Technology Camera accessory Gadget Cable Plastic


The fork end showing the pieces of the secondary retention device:
Line Household hardware Pipe Number Coquelicot


The secondary retention device engaged on the left side:
Bicycle accessory Composite material Pipe Bicycle part Steel


Those two clips that make up part of the retention device are left- and right-specific.

Sorry for the blurriness in the final photo. I was fighting my camera's autofocus, and I couldn't recall how to engage the manual-focus mode.
 

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the unvarnished nonsense
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Biopace??!!! Dear God, man, you've got to do the decent thing. Find the nearest dumpster; insert rings. I mean, she's a friend, right?
 

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the unvarnished nonsense
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"The epitome of a solution looking for a problem." There's a reason they quit making them back in '93. The problems they cause with front derailleurs negated any minimal advantage offered. But to each their own, I suppose.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hadn't thought about issues w/front derailers.

I'm still keen to try out the Biopace rings. I mean, how often will I get a chance, right?
 

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err, 27.5+
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Ah the joys of working in a bike shop in the 90's is that all of this stuff was the norm for $2-300 bikes :D Not all bad, but a lot of stuff was a bit of a headache.
 

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knock-knock...
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you spend all that time perfecting your smooth, nice, round pedal stroke, then....


well, enjoy the ride :)
 

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JonathanGennick said:
* Shimano-brand, thumb-activated shifters on the bar. These are indexed-shifters with two buttons for your thumb to push. I thought SRAM had invented that approach, but I guess not.
If I recall Shimano went with the current thumb/trigger system because the push-push system could get a bit confusing when you are anaerobic and trying to shift. Probably hard to hit the right button when you are on a rough trail too.
 

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rabidchicken said:
Sounds just like my first Trek that I got new in 1992.
Yep I had a trek 7000 i bought with paper route money sometime around then. had those exact same shifters.
 

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I guess I'm older than you.... or have been into it much longer. Half the parts on my first MTB, a Raleigh Elkhorn, were BMX and the other half were road touring. They didn't have complete mtb specific stuff quite yet. 6 speed pre-index shifting, no quick release wheels and geared to go up nothing! At least the bottom bracket was so high logs were easy, buy you got oxygen deprived riding in such high elevation.

I even remember racing against Ned in the late 80's during the pre-clipless/biopace 'ring era. He showed up, rode the course, and then put on a pair of Look road pedals. Back then I would often ride with one hand on the thumb shifter.... I even had the first Answer (later became Mantiou) fork on my Cannondale.

Retention clips were common back then for both road and MTB forks. Most people threw them away. The preceded the built on fork tabs that we have today.

Great stuff. Post some pics.
 

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Belltown Brazer
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I remember when the biopace rings, and the push-push shifters were *the latest thing!*

Doh.

B
 

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Elitest thrill junkie
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JonathanGennick said:
* Shimano-brand, thumb-activated shifters on the bar. These are indexed-shifters with two buttons for your thumb to push. I thought SRAM had invented that approach, but I guess not..
Yep, and if you've worked in a shop at all, you've usually seen all of these things (one of the things that's good about working in a shop). This is also why shimano can do their "dual release" thing now on the newer shifters, because it's simply something they did back in the day. Thing about SRAM though is that they haven't innovated much. It's only really now, finally, that we've seen them innovate and actually develop their own stuff. You would be amazed at how much of their stuff was simply re-branded Sachs components (SRAM bought Sachs a long time ago). Think they designed their own chains, derailers, shifters, cassettes and so on? Nope. Even the X-series of deraliers is mechanically the same as the last Sachs derailer line to be developed.
 

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+1 and that Sachs stuff was the nazz. I still have a couple NIB Quartz and Neos parts around. Last year I finally went through my last Sachs Grand Tourisme chain, it was a sad day.

Also I should add that if your body geometry is similar to the Shimano Bio-pace testers the stuff is awesome. Put me down with Sheldon as a fan. If you're one of those folks that believe it's just a crutch for those that can't pedal you might want to tell that to the pros riding Rotor Q-rings and see what they have to say.
 

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You would be amazed at how much of their stuff was simply re-branded Sachs components (SRAM bought Sachs a long time ago). Think they designed their own chains, derailers, shifters, cassettes and so on? Nope. Even the X-series of deraliers is mechanically the same as the last Sachs derailer line to be developed.
What was even more interesting was how much Sachs road stuff was re-branded Campy...I had a set of Sachs shifters that were 100% identical to Ergo Powers and even came with Campagnolo branded cables and housing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
While I'm "old enough", I just wasn't "into" biking back in the 80s and 90s like I am now. This Giant Rincon represents the second time I've been asked to refurbish an older-model bike. So far, each time, I've learned a lot. The first time around I had to buy a lot of tools that I didn't have. At least those tools are coming in handy once again. And all the photos earlier in this thread are proof that I still have much to learn about.

The bike is one of these classic cases of someone buying it years ago and then never doing any maintenance on it. My friend brought it to me because she jammed up the brakes in a crash. But I couldn't just fix the brakes and hand back the bike. The wheels badly need truing. The tires were rotting to the point of splitting at the seams. All the bearings and races need cleaning and regreasing. Two of the cones are pitted. The shifter buttons are horribly hard to push. The chain is dry as a bone. One brake lever is broken. Etc.

So I'm basically tearing the whole bike down, cleaning it, lubing it, greasing what needs to be greased, and then I'll put it all back together again. I'll put on new cable too.
 
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