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Circa '94 mystery frame(11 posts)

Circa '94 mystery frame38eighteen
Oct 22, 2003 2:59 AM
OK, I just started reading this forum (I usually follow singlespeed on mtbreview) but I have had enough of a look around to believe that this is not off topic...

I have acquired a bike that I enjoy riding, but it is a bit rough. I am trying to decide if it is worth upgrading (re-spray, bars and new brake levers for a start) or if it is rubbish.

It has already been sprayed at least once and has no decals or identifying marks other than the serial number "8710 94009" on the BB shell. It has a mix of Shimano 105, 600 and RX-100 components that my research place between 1994 and 1998. I therefore guess that the "94" in the serial number is for 1994.

I am in Sydney Australia and suspect (for no reason :-) the bike has been here all its life.

Here are a few pics of average quality:

About the only distinctive feature I can see is the way the rear brake bridge is lugged - it is just visible in the picture.

Thanks for reading,

re: Circa '94 mystery framewooglin
Oct 22, 2003 7:32 AM
The fork crown looks suspiciously Japanese IMO. What kind of dropouts are they?

I'd take off all the parts and weigh the frame. Something in the 4lbs range would indicate higher quality.
re: Circa '94 mystery framewspokes
Oct 22, 2003 8:20 AM
From the look of the lugs...I am guessing Japanese frameset as well. It would make a good training bike and bad weather rig. Not sure if I would upgrade but then again, I just ride them into the ground and when something breaks...replace it with another working part! Very seldom does the serial number indicate year made anymore on is a rarity anymore.
Is a brand name stamped on the dropouts?...nmbicyclerepairman
Oct 22, 2003 11:41 AM
Is a brand name stamped on the dropouts?...nm38eighteen
Oct 22, 2003 5:41 PM
I'm glad you asked! I was sure there was nothing but I just went and took off the wheel and got a touch and had a real close look. There used to be something, but it is now mostly destroyed by the axle nuts... on the outside of the dropout that incorporates the derailleur hanger:

On the bottom (upside down if the bike is right side up) was a word or acronym ending in a hollow, block upper case "L".

On the top (right way up if the bike is right side up) was a word or acronym starting with a normal upper case "T". This "T" may be followed by an "A" but it is really faint and damaged.

Does this help?

Thanks again,

I don't think that the parts provide any real clue...morebicyclerepairman
Oct 24, 2003 11:38 AM
Even the headset may not be original. That makes it likely that the frame is closer to 1984 than 1994. Looking at the fork crown (that's not a cheap fork) and the round chainstays, I would guess that the bike might be Italian. But, I've never seen a top tube cable guide brazed in the position yours is. Maybe a Lotus? Post a picture of the whole bike....
OK, here is a pic. of the whole bike...38eighteen
Oct 27, 2003 1:33 AM
Sorry about the quality - my only digital camera is a video. If it will make a difference let me know and I will borrow my brother's still camera and get a better one.


re: Circa '94 mystery framet5rguy
Oct 25, 2003 5:20 AM
The lugs look definitely 'economy' as opposed to the more expensive investment cast type. These cheaper lugs are usually made from sheet metal. The bb shell could have a visible weld on the bottom side. These lugs look very similar to the ones on my 1993 Graham Weigh frame (a Deeside house brand, English online shop). It was cheap, off the rack, but a very good racing frame, due to the geometry I guess.
What this frame really is, I cannot say, but it's definitely mass produced.

BTW, the cable guides are in the position where you'd make a cable stop in the old days!
BB Shell and lugs38eighteen
Oct 27, 2003 1:40 AM
The BB shell does have a line along the bottom - I would call it a seam rather than a weld as it is just visible. I have not had the BB out to see what it looks like from inside.

Regarding the quality of the metal, the paint is pretty badly chipped and scratched and the bare metal does not seem to be rusting despite not being kept dry - does that mean/suggest anything?


re: Circa '94 mystery frameimport silvia
Dec 2, 2003 7:29 PM
That frame looks 100% like my Giant rs950. Every lug and braze-on is identical to the Giant's. The best I've been able to determine, based on its component group, is that the bike was made in the early 90's (pre 92).
re: Circa '94 mystery frameWoof the dog
Jan 8, 2004 11:50 PM
may be totally wrong, but the fork looks like a painted aluminum Sakae back from the day.