'80s Unknown Raleigh

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Jesper

Look Ma, No Hands!
Picking up an old Raleigh for a "rustoration" (clean, stabilize rust, clear coat, no parts polishing, new tires/tubes, ride) from a local friend who restores "Whizzer" powered bikes. A perfect city bike that I doubt someone will want to steal when when parked next to all the shiny bikes. It seems to be an okay CroMo frame (probably just the main tubes; I figure it's about a 28 pounder as built) with decent components. Certainly not my normal type of bike or build given my penchant for lightweight classic European racers, but getting for essentially nothing so no loss. Photos were forwarded to me since I have yet to pick it up. My friend is building a penny-farthing and needed a longer cottered crank set than what he has now so the bike is being traded for cranks I'm not using. I am not at all familiar with Raleigh (of America) bikes of that period. I think Huffy owned the Raleigh name in the US during that period with the bikes being produced in Japan. I have no idea what "Raleigh 502" tubing is (Ishiwata, TANGE, butted/straight gauge, seamless/seamed, etc. ?)(NOT REYNOLDS, never made "502"; Reynolds "501" is seamed and butted). The frame has "RALEIGH" badged stay caps and cranks, Raleigh logo fork crown, and Raleigh logo handlebar with US flag stamping; all nice little features for what I assume was a mid-priced mass produced bike for the time. Sun Tour "V GT" (LUXE?) long cage rear derailleur, Sun Tour Front derailleur, and stem mount "Power Shift" levers; alloy rims. I believe I was told it has Dia Compe brakes. I'm assuming it's a entry level touring frame given the rear cluster gearing (large rear cog looks about 32-34T, front pair maybe 52/40T).

Anyone got any ideas as to the model and/or year.

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bulldog1935

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Sorely weathered for it's relative young age.
Make sure it comes fully apart, and I would treat the inside frame with corrosion inhibitor - Frame Saver.

A couple of things are a giveaway that you should be looking at the low-end models: splined crankset and stem shifters.
Dealers are always good about swapping at purchase, so the stem shifters may have been a dealer mod.

The decal saying Frame Tubes denotes only the main triangle tubes are the Reynolds stated grade - the rest will be hi-ten carbon steel.
Kurt Kaminer is always the place to begin on Raleigh catalogs - I'll dig a little and get back...

Best guess, 1983-ish Grand Prix - the catalog I linked states Frame 3 Main Tubes Cr-Mo
 
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Jesper

Look Ma, No Hands!
I am quite certain that it is an entry level/"sport" model given its features, but still on the higher end of that range given the frame detailing and components which would not not occur on the lowest models. Because there will be very little money involved in its refurbishing (I have plenty of similar quality or better components), unless I need new hubs, it will be a cheap and easy project. The front chain guard, whether to retain the chain and/or prevent a clothing mishap is a plus for my planned use given I will just be putzing around on it for 10 mile or less rides. That frame could easily draw some attention if restored/painted with the frame and component details highlighted and the parts polished or replaced with some in better condition.

The Sun Tour V GT LUXE derailleur is worth the value of the bike complete bike if it is properly functional; they are gelling for $40-$60 or more in various markets. The engraved cranks (even with the guard) are also becoming sought after and would easily sell for $20-$30 in their condition. Probably about $100 of components on a $50-$100 frame (tubing has surface rust only, no rot or heavy pitting) so a value for the $10-$20 cranks I'm bartering with.

Just a note: the tubing is not REYNOLDS, that was only used on the English made mid to high end range of Raleighs. The decal is "RALEIGH 502" not "REYNOLDS 502"! I figure that it is a Japanese tubing (TANGE or Ishiwata) similar in grade to "REYNOLDS 501" tubing of the same time period; probably seamed, possibly butted. The "REYNOLDS 501" frame I have is made with a seamed and butted CroMo main frame tubes; it rides well and is still a lightweight framed bike at about 23 lbs as it sets. This Raleigh frame probably has straight gauge CroMo stays or Hi-Ten steel stays for the entry level frame range.
 

messenger390

On Training Wheels
The one in your pictures has the same seatstay caps and paint colour as the Raleigh Big Horn mountain bike I bought new in spring of 1984. I would agree with above poster it is the Grand Prix or maybe Record.

Actually pretty nice bikes for the money, all steel derailleurs and lugged frame with a decent set of wheels make a pretty good value for a rather durable machine. My Big Horn came with Suzue hubs and Weinmann rims, they took quite a bit of (ab)use and still worked well.

Yours looks like it has 27" (630mm) wheels in a time when 700c (622mm) was becoming popular ; i could be wrong, it hard to tell from the pics.

Hope the resto/de-rustification goes smoothly for you! No doubt a gem waiting to be polished . ..

Dave C
Toronto
 

bulldog1935

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
The VGT Luxe is the same RD that was branded Raleigh on the '77-79 Grand Prix and Super Course.
I used mine here on '57 Lenton built from bare frame, and engineered bottom end.
1398926

Certainly the most desirable is the Cyclone, at least in part because of the sexy cable clamp that routes through the center of the parallelogram
(here on my '74 International)
1398930

Stashed away NOS, I have the 2nd most desirable SunTour RD, the Blue Line
 
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Jesper

Look Ma, No Hands!
The VGT Luxe is the same RD that was branded Raleigh on the '77-79 Grand Prix and Super Course.
I used mine here on '57 Lenton built from bare frame, and engineered bottom end.
View attachment 1398926

Certainly the most desirable is the Cyclone, at least in part because of the sexy cable clamp that routes through the center of the parallelogram
(here on my '74 International)
View attachment 1398930

Stashed away NOS, I have the 2nd most desirable SunTour RD, the Blue Line
Thanks for the input. I also have a "Blue Line" RD; I was not aware they were overly desirable, but I know it is a decent mech. I like the Cyclone model except for the clamp bolt extending below the parallelogram.
I was given a clue by another individual that this frame might be a Raleigh "Marathon". I tried viewing a bunch of Kurt's catalog examples, but I can't see the proper details clearly to make an ID. I saw an example of a "Marathon" but it was Raleigh 575 or 555 tubing, not 502; might have changed for a different model year. That example had the same stay caps, fork crown, crank, and handlebar embellishments. Described as a "sport tourer" in the '85 catalog; appeared to be about in the middle of the pack for features and components as compared to the top end and low end models so a good candidate for a rebuild, and now maybe a paint job in a couple brighter and contrasting colors if my budget allows after figuring out what it will need to make it 100% mechanically sound. Time to move a bike/frame from the inventory if this becomes a proper regular rider (I have a late '60s-early '70s [unverified] Vicini frame set that needs a new home).
 
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