Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Trek Mystery.

Well I am posting this to get a little help unravelling a mystery. I am the new owner of a metallic flake blue 25.5 inch(64cm) TREK. Now I have owned many Treks and my second race bike was a red Trek 2000 warranty replacement frame. This bike is old. 1970s old. I think it may be a first year hand built TREK but the pieces are not adding up. I am not planning on keeping the bike for myself as it is just too large. Normally after about a week it would become a fixed gear and be adopted into the Brazen Cycleworks family. But this needs to go to a Trek collector and I need to raise some $$ for Toys for Tots for a benefit ride I am doing in August. So if you can provide the most help I would love to send you a Brazen Cycleworks polo shirt in L or XL, I think that is all I have left. I need to know how to market this bike accurately to get the Trek collectors what they are looking for and raise big bucks. Drop me a line if you think you can help. Here are some details and pictures.

  • Head tube badge is not screwed on, typical of newer models
  • Serial number is 5B6B38 size 25.5, model TX200, year 1976, month Feb but these are normally 7 digits, could be 38th frame and that is why missing last digit
  • Builder stamp H
  • Tubing Sticker is 022 Ishiwata Cro Mo double butted
  • Comes from Vern's in Oshkosh, I would expect early Treks to originate from WI
  • The headtube badge and tubing used are confusing as the 1976 catalog on vintage-trek.com seems to imply it would have been a TX500 with that tube set if it was in fact a 1976 bike
  • Build kit seems consistent with bike assembled from frame up and does not fit specs on later bikes
  • I will include a further spec sheet of components when I have more time.

Thanks for your help. -Eric
Trek UPDATE, consensus reveals this TREK is a 1980 414 model. I am selling off the Original 77 Suntour Cyclone components and turning the bike into a giant 63cm fixxie.


Eric said...

Well I got my first clue on the exact origin of this vintage Trek.

John Thompson recalls the 'H' stamp to have belonged to Bill Horstmeier.

More details to come I presume...
Thanks John! -Eric

Anonymous said...

The derailleur you have is the 1.0 generation of Suntour Cyclone derailleurs. Sometime in the late 1970's, they changed the upper mounting arm to make it one smooth "swoosh" from the mounting bolt to the outer parallelogram plate. So if the derailleur is original your bike could be 1975, 1976, or 1977 ( i had a 1977 bike with that type of plate. ). I don't know about 1978-79-80-81. - Don Gillies, San Diego, CA, USA

Eric said...

Hello Eric -

Thanks for your note and the kind words.

There have been two other 6 digit serial numbers reported like yours: 5B6D79 and 4B0O58. The first one is for a frame that was not made in 1976. It likely is a 410 or 610 frame, which means the digit that normally indicates the year often does not.

The 4B0O58 was bought in 79 or 80, and it is a 310, or 510.

If your frame is a 410, then the year digit is often not correct. These were typically made in 79, 80 or 81. Ishiwata main tubes would indicate a 41X (either 412 or 414 bike). Have a look at year exceptions on the serial number page.

The glued on headbadge would mean it is not a 76 frame. However, there is a small possibility that the frame was returned to Trek for a repaint, a new stick-on headbadge might have been added. However, the old screw holes would be still on the inside of the headtube.