Friday, August 15, 2008

A Very Old Panasonic Track Bike, kind of...

Here's an interesting Panasonic / National catalogue pic from the 1970s. 

Why? Because it's an entry-level 'training track bicycle' AKA cheap fixed gear bike made from probably very crappy components and from very heavy low-end tubing. Just like what so many companies are pushing on the market right now, just go to Ebay and do a search for 'track bike'... Basically a ' track bike' which is really not a track bike at all but sold as such anyway. 

In a way you could say that Panasonic were like 30 years ahead of the game with a bike like that back in the day. 


aamidor said...

I'm the original owner of a 1981 Panasonic Training Track Bike, bought new in Carbondale Ill. in 1983. Frame is chrome-moly, and forks are ordinary "10-20" carbon steel. Chain wheel is sort of cheap, but cut from solid aluminum. Original rear hub and cog were very, very nicely done. Wheels were top drawer knurled aluminum. Frame tubes double-butted, and the top tube has a very narrow diameter, narrower than down tube or seat tube - very, very trick for its day. Steering geometry was all track, including shorter wheelbase. In fact, the "training track bike" was exactly like Panasonic's top end competitive track bike of the day except for the cheap fork; brakes; the kiddy-style chain guard; and maybe pedals. List price in 1981-3 was $329 - not a cheap bike then, but the bike was much better than you think. I just saw your post and thought I'd correct you.

sufferist said...

I've been riding a friends 1978 Training Track Bike and I've been really digging (do the kids use that expression still?) it. He put on Campy brakes and an Exage 500ex 51 tooth chainring and cranks and classic Look pedals. This makes for a nice set up and a great commuter for cheap money.