Vitus Bikes - Track 979 980 Vee

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  • Hi all.
    Just picked one of these up on ebay. Unfortunately not steel but nice looking welds - not one of the glued style frames. Anyone have any ideas about Vitus track frames?
    Ta.

  • Great tubing, or so ive heard.
    Id be careful its not got a french B/B shell, tho if its post 1970, you wont have to worry about that.
    Im in the process of converting a 1960's french frame that i think might have vitus steel pipes. seems to be pretty nice!

  • Hi does anybody something about this tubing...all i know is that it is French, double butted steel and lighter than 531c....i know about Vitus due to their 979 Duralinox frames....but very little about 980......so.....how good is it?....Strengths and weaknesses?.......Any info would be appreciated.......cheers

  • Need a bit of advice about a Vitus 979 frame i recently picked up. I didn't know too much about it before i bought it, i just thought it was very pretty, light and fitted me like a dream. I've now done some research, and im aware of a few of the issues the frame has, such as its flexiness, but im only 10 stone so im hoping it will be ok.

    Basically, i would ideally like to get some track ends on it, but being aluminium im not sure if this is possible. Someone told me that nobody will weld aluminium, but then i've seen a few things on here about it being done. Also, is it actually worth it? Its a lovely frame, but im not sure how viable it is fixed...

    Any advice would be hugely appreciated. Apologies if this has been asked before, but i can't find it anywhere.

  • Eccentric hub.

  • Bear in mind that the dropout end are GLUED onto the stays, no way you can weld on the dropouts. Dunno if you can machine (file? dremel?) those dropouts to have a slot rather than a vertical dropout?

    +1 to Balki suggestion, White industries ENO hub if ya love that frame?

  • I've got a brand new 130mm ENO in my pants, I mean drawers. They're not cheap though.

  • ^Ye i thought the eccentric hub might be the most popular choice. How much do you want for it hippy?

  • I run ENO eccentrics on two of my bikes, very good they are too. But hear this: when I was more skint, I happily ran one of the bikes with a normal track hub and magic gear. Although it had vert drops, they were a bit "baggy" - i.e. they had a little room (1-2mm) for play. With the right gear, there was enough room to acheive tension. I only changed this setup when the wheel failed (for unrelated reasons) and I built I new posh one.

  • ^Ye i thought the eccentric hub might be the most popular choice. How much do you want for it hippy?

    £100. I'd have to check the size of it - I can't remember if it was 130mm or 135mm.

  • an old thread, but sv980 is top tubing, the main weakness is that it was made by people without a business mind

  • I had a Gitane made from super vitus - it was light but pretty flexy.
    This is from www.classicrendezvous.com:

    "Ateliers de la Rive, a company based on the outskirts of St Etienne, France, started making tubes in 1931. In the early post WW2 years their premium tubing was called Rubis, and widely used by French quality frame builders. Around this time Urago, in Nice, started using DURIFORT - the tubing maker's base set of plain gauge tubing for their "Debutante" model, and "Vitus" a lighter double-buted set, for their better frames, alongside Reynolds 531DB.

      Durifort continued as a set well into the 1970s by which time Ateliers de        la Rive had introduced       Vitus 171, a series of        double-butted tubes in chrome-molybdenum steel, with wall thickness        generally of 1.00 / 0.7mm. This was a quality tubing subjected to special        drawing treatment to improve the structure of the steel and to reduce        possibilities of  fatigue cracks. Companies such as Peugeot used huge        quantities of this tubing. Later in the 70s/early 80s, the company        introduced alongside        Vitus 172 - slightly        lighter than 171 - an extra-light series called Super Vitus 971.        This used the same type of steel but was drawn into finer tubes with        0.9/0.6mm gauge walls. The steel type was called XC 35. 
    
      The base set at this time became known as Durifort-Rubis 888.Not        much later Ateliers revised its range to include Vitus 888,        at 2030 gms, a plain gauge set for touring frames, Vitus 181        a D/B set weighing 1790gms for racing., Super Vitus 983,        at 1624gms, a "Course Professionel" set and Super Vitus 980,        at 1507gms a "Course Professionel" Serie Extra Legere set. The SV980 also        appeared as "Profil  Arcor" an "aero" shaped set weighing in at        1615gms, and the 888 series figured also as "Vitus Profil" - a P/G aero        set at 2030gms. Curiously Ateliers de la Rive never included the steering        column and head tube in these weights. The "buzz on the block" at the time        was that the SV980 set underwent some heat-treatment. The tube sets were        delivered with instructions about how to braze these tubes and how to        ensure that they did not suffer from "cold-shock" which could make them        brittle.
      In the later 1980s and early 90s Ateliers tried very hard to regain some        of the sales it had lost to companies such as Reynolds and Columbus.        Peugeot was the worlds largest user of Reynolds 501 Chro-Moly tubing set.        This had the effect of making Ateliers lose most of their sales of 181DB        tubing. The range was rechristened with names such as TXO, XO, GTI         and SM were introduced for road and track use alongside a range for MTB        and BMX frames.
    
      The top tube set was TXO a chromium-molybdenum-vanadium tube set in        0.8/0.6 gauges with internal ribbing. The same steel, 18 MCDV6, was used        to make the triple-butted GTI tube set and the Olympic P/G curved tube set        for time-trial frames. 18 MCD6 steel, a chro-moly was used for the 
      XO D/B road and track sets and the 999 NEW P/G touring set. A new type of        steel 18MV6 - known as a silicon-maganese tubing SM, was introduced as the        company's base set. While some French manufacturers continued to use these        excellent sets, the Company did not take much of a slice out of either        Columbus' or Reynolds' sales.
    
      In about 1993 Atelier de la Rive introduced a superlight tube set called        "Prestige", which as I recall was a heat-treated version of the 18 MCDV6        steel but drawn down to about 0.8/0.4 mms. This material did not do much        to stem the Company's decline until it stopped production of steel tubing        altogether around 1999/2000.
      Since the late 70s, the company had had a joint venture with Bador and        CLB-Angenieux to produce the renowned Duralinox range of frames - frames        which were quite revolutionary in their time - and which sold  well        as long as the likes of Sean Kelly rode and won on them. The last model in        that range the 992 actually introduced some 8 or 10 years ago the now        ubiquitous "lost headset" design.
    
      The company changed owners very rapidly from the mid-90s onwards and was        owned at one time by Time and at another by LOOK.. From a height of 196        employees it reduced to around 20. The name is still alive in the        ownership of a very strong French cycle industry conglomerate, but now        concentrates like everyone else on TIG-welded aluminum alloy frames. They        might even be produced in France, but who knows?"
    
  • I had a 60cm frame made out of this and it worked fine while I weighed 60kg. Not so well when I went up to 90kg. Gotty Hansen in South Africa made many of his premier (Hansom branded) frames out of this in the 70's and 80's, As above, light and flexy.

  • Hi guys, Today I bought this golden vitus 979

    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/600524/979.jpeg

    But there are some rare details like the rear brake cable clips in the top tube (only seen on carbon frames) and a small hole besides the fork dropouts like the ones for adding a basket or a fender, which makes me wonder if it´s a primitive 979 or maybe just some other model..

    Does anybody knows it?
    thanks!

  • you should upload a bigger picture ... cant see any details on that bike

  • The picture is 2800x2112 pixels, not big enough?
    try just the link
    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/600524/979.jpeg

  • Oh, maybe your browser is scaling it down, click on it to zoom full size.

  • maybe upload some photos of the details - lugs, seatstays, underside of the bottom bracket etc etc... these are normally what will tell anyone who knows anything something about the thing that you want to find something about.

  • Lovely bike however.

  • The bike is not with me yet, those are some more pictures from the seller:

    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/600524/9792.jpeg­
    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/600524/9793.jpeg­

  • These are amazing bikes, I bought one a couple of weeks ago and it's incredibly quick and light:

    http://dl.dropbox.com/u/58789818/Vitus%2­0979.png

    Yours is definitely an earlier model as the rear brake cable runs along the top tube rather than through the middle of it.The model after mine had a few other minor alterations such as using a grub screw for the seat post, but I don't think there were any major changes.

  • Damn! I overtightened the seatpost nut and the lug snapped on my aluminium frame Vitus. What are my options? Welding? Gluing? Please tell me it's salvageable.

  • post a pic, I fixed one once by filling off the old lug and putting a clamp on it, but there are a few different ways this lug can crack and I can't tell if your lug is the same as mine

  • The lug is identical to this one. The break is vertical and near the middle of the seatpost. I'll get an actual photo later when i ge home. do you have a photo of your fix?

  • Maybe you could try something like this... http://www.lfgss.com/thread34491.html

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Vitus Bikes - Track 979 980 Vee

Posted by Avatar for jimalex @jimalex

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