This bicycle has been updated - click here for the latest version

Here's the pics for the Takara I've recently completed. I picked this up at a rummage sale for $5 (US). It had straight handlebars and the barcons in small pieces of pipe electrical-taped to the bars. It was just too nice to leave like that!

Nearest I can tell it's about a 1980, with cables routed above the bottom bracket. It's obvious to see it was made by Kuwahara, as all the dropouts and the headset have "Kuwahara" stamped on them. There's no model name, just "Takara" on the downtube and a real metal headbadge. The chromed fork is a nice touch. Tubing sticker just says "Guaranteed Special Takara Tubes, Forks and Stays" which I take to mean straight guage, seemed tubes tho I have no proof, other than if it was better tubing they'd probably would've touted it. I was going to make this my "main" commuter/tour-ey bike but the .833 sized quill slowed that down a bit (I like to get the bars up at least close to level with the saddle or my shoulder starts to really bug me). The DiaCompe stem that came with it is about the best I'm going to do in that quill diameter so now my son rides it. The frame is a 58c-c and my others are 57 but for some reason this just feels small to me (no, the top tube is same as my others). Maybe it's the narrow bars. It's a bit heavy for a road bike by today's standards but boy does it really ride nice.

If anyone else knows mre about Takara/Kuwahara bikes, please let me know!

Other pieces:
- SR Sakae handlebars with "anatomic bend" came from a newer Raleigh Record. They're not bad but at 40cm wide, too small for my current taste (I like 44's). I would swap them out BUT I just taped these up with adhesive-backed cloth tape (from Rivendell) and it just wasn't right to waste all that bar tape. My son, however, is happy with them
- DiaCompe stem, stock with this bike. 10cm extension.
- Shimano non-aero levers (from the Miyata 110)
- SunTour power ratchet barcons (were on bike when I got it tho I'm certain it didn't come that way from Takara)
- Kalloy seatpost not pictured (thanks to Chuck at OK Velo)
- San Marco saddle
- DiaCompe 610 center pulls with new pads from Nashbar (I had them for a few years, dunno why I bought them, but they work well). Since the bike originally had 27" wheels and now it's got 700c's, the front brakes didn't reach so I took a DiaCompe 720 centerpull from the rear of a Motobecane mixte and swapped out the mounting bolts.
- F.I.R. EL45B rims on Ofmega hubs (wheelset originally was on a '86 Bianchi Campione D'Italia)
- The Regina freewheel and dork plate in the pics have been removed and installed was a Shimano Mega Range 7-speed freewheel - Panaracer Pasela 700 x 35's, a Riv SpeedBlend on the front.
- Shimano UN72 (113 spindle) bottom bracket
- Sugino VP crank with 52/42 chainrings
- SunTour VxGT rear derailler (I *really* like this)
- SunTour SL front derailler - the "backwards" shifting one. Great! Now both levers work in the same direction. Why no one else didn't go along with this idea I'll never know.
- Planet Bike fenders. They work but as usual with plastic fenders they're not really straight. Maybe I'll put Bethounds on this.
- Topeak rack. Was labelled as some sort of "city" rack with that annoying spring-clamp thing. I took that off immediately. Other than that it's a very good rack.

J.D. Kimple


Takara road frame only


Takara Road frame


Takara Road Bike - side view


This bicycle has been updated - click here for the latest version

Current Classics Photo Gallery - Cross Bike Photo Gallery
Single Speed Garage Photo Gallery
- Working Bikes & Practical Hardware

   Submit a Current Classic Bicycle Photo