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Gallery - Julia DeGrace's 1977 Trek TX700

Julia DeGrace says of her well-experienced 1977 Model 710:

"I was living in Goleta CA in 1977 and wanted to move up to a pro-quality touring bike from the very nice, but too small for me, Raleigh Gran Prix I was riding. Nice racing bikes were available to purchase, but high quality touring bikes were not widely available. I found I would have to build my own. I rode my bike to work and between buildings, spread all over Goleta, during my work days. You may remember the Raytheon Corporation facilities that were there.

"The folks at Hendrickson's Bicycles on State Street told me about this new Midwest company making nice custom frames and showed me a sample they had purchased. The TX700, with its longer chainstays and available large size seemed to fit my needs. I seem to recall filling out a sheet describing my body measurements that was sent to the Trek factory. I ordered my frame in May 1977 and received it either late June or July 1977. It's a 24" TX700 with Campy headset, Campy rear dropouts and brazed water bottle cage bosses. Today, I wish I had the money to get brazed cable guides too. The day I picked it up, Hendrickson's let me loose on the shelves of their storeroom with a cardboard box I filled with goodies to build my bike.

"I was building a touring bike, so Campy parts wouldn't do as they came only in race configuration. The Japanese were coming out with some nice touring parts and I used them. Original parts still on the bike are Sugino wide-range crankset, and Suntour Cyclone wide-range derailluers in the "new" black anodized finish. The bar-end shifters give better control when shifting a heavily loaded tourer. After reading an article in Bicycling Magazine, I custom assembled the Regina cassette to give me 10 unique, logorithymically-calculated, gear ratios, including a stump-puller for climbing mountains. I built up a set of light, strong Rigida rims and added Weinmann brakes and levers off a Raleigh I had at home. A Zefal pump (which still works), Blackburn rack, SR LaPrade seat post, SR stem and randonneur bars, an old Brooks leather saddle, used pedals and toe-clips finished the bike. Gerry bike panniers and handlebar bag did packing duty. This large-framed bike, as pictured, with computer, pump, kickstand and luggage rack, still weighs less than 25 pounds. Maybe 21 pounds without them; I forget.

"I have no idea how far the bike has gone, just lots! I've upgraded the seat, pedals, toe straps, water bottle cage and tires a few times along the way. I added a trip computer a few years ago. The bike still performs as well as it did when new. It has never been refinished. I owe its good condition to the kickstand I've always used. I still like the ride of the 531 steel frame. When I saw they were getting rare, I bought a supply of 27" light-weight IRC tires a few years back. I still have 3 extras, kept in dark, cool storage. I'm 58 years old, the attached pics were taken just after my Saturday morning ride. I guess I'll be keeping this bike a bit longer as long as I can get good 27" tires for it. The old bike suits this old gal.

Click on each photo to see an enlarged image.



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