Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Fuji Del Rey, We Hardly Knew Ye

My friend Dakota came down from Baltimore today and bought my Fuji Del Rey. Dakota and I have worked together in a few software startups, so he got a pretty heavy buddy discount.  Dakota also granted me the right of first refusal should he ever decide to sell this bike.

Dakota, a coldly analytic sort, is not one to jump into things uninformed, so we had been talking about the pros and cons of buying a vintage bike rather than new production. We looked at new production bikes online, discussed the details of upgrading to index shifting should he want to go that way, 126mm rear spacing vs. 130mm - all the usual stuff.

After a fair amount of Spock-like due diligence, Dakota decided that buying a refurbished old bike made more economic sense than buying new production and fit his needs.

So here is the proud new owner:

Observant readers may note that the Del Rey no longer sports the gold freewheel and chain. The freewheel was an old Suntour with straight cut cogs and the chain was a NOS 6 speed one. We swapped this for a new Shimano hyperglide freewheel and a modern chain. This subtracted a bit of bling from the bike but doubtlessly added much crisper and positive shifting.

We then went off on a celebratory ride for Dakota to get acquainted with his new friend. Riding alongside Dakota, I found the Del Rey's gold rims very alluring and almost hypnotic. We humans are primally attracted to shiny objects.

We made the obligatory stop at the Rock Creek Trestle for a few pictures, cheesy cell phone ones in this case. Just as there are prides of lions, murders of crows, I wonder what a group of vintage Fujis is called? A gleam?

After we returned and packed up the bike, we puttered around the garage and Dakota got interested in my Fuji S12-S Mixte. So we shot a picture so he could see what his wife, the intended recipient, might think of this.

Well, another one down, about 5 or 6 to go. I just have to try to sell them faster than I'm buying them.


Dakota said...

Thanks for the awesome buddy discount, I'm loving the new bike.

Anonymous said...

I need help figuring out the year my Fuji was made. It's a Del Rey serial number: FB300712. Thanks for any assistance!

robatsu said...


Looks like yours is from February 1983. Check out for more information

Anonymous said...

That is what I thought! Thanks for your help!!

David said...

Just poking around here for the first time. It sounds like you have some bikes for sale. Are they listed somewhere? Too bad we never crossed paths, I used to stop on the Rock Creek trestle all the time (I think its particularly nice late at night).