Saturday, May 9, 2009

Lotus Excelle Sport Series

Well I said I would post the Lotus soon, so here it is! I really like this bike and I would love to keep it. But sadly it is a 62cm frame. And I am five foot & eleven inches tall. Now don`t get me wrong I can ride a 62cm frame. I rode this bike today. But the proper size frame for me is 57 to 58cm (5ft11 to 6ft1). And frame size really does matter, especially on long rides. I did lots of clean-up on this bike and installed many new parts. Even took the saddle off my new MotoBecane. Which is ok, I have already ordered a new saddle for the Moto. So if you are interested in owning a classic 62cm Road Bike. Which by the way is 100% Road Ready For a mere 350.00 it can be yours to have and to hold... Now that may sound a little steep. But this Lotus is worth every penny.U pdate: The lotus eventually sold for around $300.00 US. The list of new and refurbished parts is too long to list here. I don`t buy bikes and pump up the tires, wash it up and try to pass it off as "all original needs nothing". That is a bunch of crap! "Homey Don`t Play That Game" I put a lot of effort into finding bikes that are worth saving. This Lotus is a perfect example of what I look for. Good frame, good paint and graphics, straight or fixable wheels. a smooth crank and head-set. Basically low mileage bikes suffering from" long term storage disorder". (LTSD) Tires hard and cracking, cables brittle and corroded, all grease broke down and hardened. Derailleurs partially frozen in time and lots of surface rust. Those are the main symptoms of LTSD. If you have never heard of LTSD it is because I just now made up the name! But there is only one cure for LTSD and it`s not "a quick wash and air in the tires"! It`s hard work and lots of elbow grease. And yes many new parts. So don`t listen when they tell you" Oh it`a all original has been stored for 20 years but really does not need any thing" That`s a bunch of Horse Hockey! Ride-able and Reliable are not the same thing. A little oil and soap does not cure LTSD. Do you hear me people! Ok I`ll shut up now and say goodnight.
Cheers,Hugh

5 comments:

  1. I`m sorry to say I no longer have the lotus. I do have a Schwinn Continental that might fit you. But I bet it has at least 10 pounds on the Lotus.A virtual Tank of a road-bike.

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  2. I have a lotus excelle triathlon bike. It rides great

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  3. This one rode great too :) Unfortunately this one was built for someone about 6ft 4inch to 6ft 5inches tall. And me being 5ft 11inch,(on a good day) not a good fit.I had to find her a new home.

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  4. Hi Hugh. I have a Lotus Excelle that I bought when I was 17,(23 years ago). I sacked groceries for a long time to pay for this bike, which was $350-$400 at the time. For a few years I used the hell out of this bike, then got married had kids got busy with work...The bike just sat. A few years back I bought a Gary Fisher Tarpon (for less then I paid for the Lotus)and rode recreationally every now and then, until recently. The last few months I have finally gotten back the (passion)that I had biking when I was younger. I try to bike 20 miles at least 2-3 times a week. I have been using the Mountain bike for these rides, but I'm on hard surfaces all of the time, so it doesn't make sense to me to pump this large, heavy bike when I should be on a road bike. So, I am looking at the possibilty of restoring the lotus to ride, but would really appreciate some advice...First off, I have aspirations to do some touring in the future, nothing major-like maybe 3-5 centuries. Is this an acceptable bike to use in your opinion for that purpose? Secondly, If I was going to restore this bike, I would want to change the 26" wheels to 700c wheels that were narrower. Is this a bad move? Is 700c the right way to go? I would also like to switch out the brake levers to aero, with cables under the tape because it looks a lot nicer...Also, the chrome parts of the bike have rust now, like the ring in the front. Are these easy to replace or fix? Should I scrap this bike and look for another road bike for doing some touring with? I would really appreciate your opinion. Thanks.

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  5. Hey Rand, First did you mean 27inch wheels? Anyway I don`t think I would make the switch to 700cc. I`m thinking the correct width for an Excelle is about 1 inch or 1&1/8th inch, that should be fine for touring. And yes I think the Excelle would be fine for touring. If you do make the switch make sure the new hubs are the correct width. Some of the "high-tensile strength" forks from the 1980`s don`t spread(even a little) with out damaging the fork.
    About the rust. Before you go looking for N.O.S. chrome parts. Get a brass brush (tooth brush size)
    and another, a little bigger and some chrome polish/rust remover. And try to save the chrome. You might be surprised how well it cleans up. And I agree aero-levers is a nice upgrade and it doesn`t have to break the bank. Another upgrade I like is going to a micro-adjust post. Again not an expensive up-grade. Although I suspect your bike already has one.
    Good luck with your restoration. You can post it on oldtenspeedgallery.com if you like. Tell Cameron that Hugh sent you.
    Cheers, Hugh

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