Driving through my neighborhood yesterday (ironically, on my way to the LBS) when I spot a bike set out with the trash. SCREEECH! as I come to a stop. It has flat bars, but it looks older. I ask the owner, "are you throwing that bike out?" and he says, "Yup - it's yours if you want it." "Thanks!" I say as I throw it in the back of the truck. I get it home and look it over. An old Gran Criterium? No. An old Super Course? No. But... it's a Nishiki Custom Sport, my guess is very late 70s or early 80s. Nice maroon frame with gold lug lining. Suntour barcons on the ends of the flat bars (are both original?). Bluemels fenders, Pletscher rack (with optional fold-up grocery bag baskets). Sugino cotterless crank, Dia Comp (weinmann) center pulls. SR stem. Early Shimano 600 front derailleur (the one with the neat curly-cues on either side of the wording). Unfortunately, rear der. was replaced at some point with a later Shimano "smooth action." Shimano high flange hubs. Half-chrome forks and stays. Should clean up nicely. Can't decide if I want to restore it as a tourer or a fixed-gear. Tubing is Toshiba hi-ten, so it ain't exactly "lightweight" but it's not bad, and it was FREE!
I'm sure some of you have better stories about finding a bike out with Eddy Merckx trash when you were "on holiday" in Belgium, but this is the highlight of my rather new interest in vintage bikes. So it ain't my '74 Jack Taylor. It should still be a lot of fun.
Duncan "one man's trash is another man's treasure" Granger Lancaster, PA