Friday, September 9, 2011

Working on the Takara

I took off work a couple of hours early and rushed home to work on my Takara touring bike. I need to swap out the original cantilever brakes for a modern set with lots of height adjustment. I'm going to convert this bike from the old school 27" wheels to 700c. You just can't find a 27" tire wider than 32mm. As usual it didn't take long before I ran across some problems.

The front brakes fit just fine with no problems but I came across an issue with the rear brakes.

The little spring pins on the back of the brakes wouldn't reach the hole on either brake boss. A little work with the drill eventually solved the problem.

When I moved the cranks I noticed a fair amount of lateral play. I tried to adjust the bottom bracket with the cranks attached but it just wasn't working. I made the rash decision to remove the old style bottom bracket and replace it with a sealed unit. This annoying piece (whatever it's called) wouldn't come off. Of course the proper tools might have made things easier.

The combination of a humongous crescent wrench, spray lube, and brute force finally yielded success. Now I need to find a 127mm Shimano UN-72 sealed BB if I want to use the original crankset.

Changing gears here:

I plan to replace some of my screen printing equipment over the next year. I really miss printing t shirts. I found this video over at the Northcoast Zeitgeist blog. What caught my attention was that this guy is buying white t shirts, which when you are buying bulk are significantly cheaper than colored shirts, and then dying them himself before printing. Labeling the shirts with an ink stamp is pretty cool.


  1. All of the fusting around is just one of the fun reasons to play with bikes.

  2. Good news, all around.

    You'll enjoy those wider tires on this year's Ramble. Let's all start blocking out weekends around the end of fall NOW.

    And I wear my Rat Trap Press T-Shirts ALL-THE-TIME, so I'm about ready for a few new ones. Maybe you'll be ready to go before these fall off of me.

  3. Wider? Than 28c? Is this year's ramble off road for the entire length? That Takara will need mud scrapers!

  4. By the way, there's a t-shirt thread over on the Rivendell list. If you were to take some of their ideas and prepare a series of Riv-oriented shirts, you'd likely have instant market demand. Us Riv owners are pathetic.

  5. Brute force wins again! I can not wait to see some shirts.

  6. I like t-shirts too and if I had room, wouldn't mind learning how to print some. I enjoyed the video. Very nice.

  7. I hope you find those brakes adequate. I wasn't happy with the Oryx on the back of my lht. Front seems ok.

    I don't wear t-shirts much... Is there a good way to screen-print on button-down shirts?