Thursday, June 8, 2017

"Jane" or "Sayonara" to my 1982 Fuji Track Bicycle

I just listed my beautiful '82 track bicycle on ebay.  I also have it on Philly Craigslist.  I am selling it because I am purchasing a grand piano, which will be more useful to me.  I teach and play piano, and after years of looking for an affordable grand I found one a few weeks ago (on mother's day to be exact).

Though I rode this bicycle at the velodrome in Trexlertown, Pa in an adult class, and had a wonderful time doing so, I am not a racer.  I live too far away to go regularly, and if I do, I can simply ride my Fuji Royale II.  It is a wonderful bicycle in its own right.  In fact, if I have to keep only one of my Fuji's, I have decided that the Royale II is it.  It is light, comfortable, fast.  It would do well on a long tour, around town, and everything in between.

I am hopeful the track bicycle will sell soon.  I know I'm going to take a hit on value.  In my mind, it is worth over $1000.  I know I won't be able to fetch that though, so of course I have relented on price.  At this time it is just more important to me to acquire the piano.  I really want to have a grand style action for my own practicing, and it will be nice to have two pianos to do ensemble work with my students.

I have good memories with this bike, but I know it is time to let go of it.  It doesn't belong cooped up in my basement any longer!  It needs to get out and fly.  I am releasing it to a new life; a renewed life. 

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Could There be a Fuji in YOUR Future?

I love these old Fuji ads.  Usually I just feel manipulated by advertising.  For instance, I recently stayed in a hotel having booked just one night.  Right away I started receiving pop up ads on screen with the slogan, "One night is NEVER enough."  What is that!?  That is so blatant, and it just turns me off completely.  I'm already giving you money, and you just keep asking for more, more, more!

But read this ad.  It is not about money, in fact, they go in the opposite direction (sort of).  I mean, yes, Fuji wanted your money.  However, they were cooler, classier, about how they went about trying to get it from you.  You can tell from the first sentence they knew who their audience was.  The language is not manipulative sounding at all.  It sounds sincere, direct. This ad is full of confident words floating on a boat of integrity.  They're your friend, the business insider, helping you out.

And they knew the business.  They had it down pat.  By the time this ad was printed (1980?), I think they had probably been importing bicycles into the USA for at least 7 or 8 years.  This was near the end of the bicycle boom in this country, which had begun about the same time Fuji began importing their bicycles (1971?).  People here were into bikes in a big way for many different reasons.  Fuji could offer high quality at an affordable price that their competitors couldn't match.  In many ways, Fuji's quality even surpassed their competitors' as well.  This was a bicycle that couldn't be beat.  Their ads seem to tell the truth.

And so it remains today I think, for these old Fujis.  Many people bought them.  Some rode them like crazy.  Some are still riding that first Fuji.  Some are looking for that first Fuji they used to have.  And some just never got that attached, never really rode, and garaged that first Fuji.  They are being put up for sale, after all these years. 

That means that you still have a chance to experience the "remarkable handling ease and versatility" of a classic Fuji bicycle.  Being someone who has ridden quite a few different models of these vintage Fujis, I think you can believe them when they used to write in their catalogs, "Fuji starts with the top of the line in each use category and uses these top-performance characteristics to arrive at the lower-priced bikes.  The result is that a mid-priced bike from many manufacturers retains some of the 'feel' of their bottom-line bike, whereas a mid-price Fuji tends to retain the 'feel' of the top-line Fuji.  And, a Fuji never has a feature which is just there for show, or to make a model seem to be something it is not."

So if you're looking for a quality used bicycle, go find a vintage Fuji.  In my experience, I can attest to what they said in this ad, "We predict it will reward you with greater pleasure than any bicycle has before.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Close Encounters of the Fuji Kind

I just realized that I have never posted about a crazy Fuji encounter I had in the fall of 2012.

On a beautiful sunny day I rode a Bikes at Work trailer back to my friend's house from whom I had borrowed it.  The trailer was empty, and even though it was quite a distance (at least 20 miles I think), it was an easy pull.  Being empty, it also kept my reflective "FUJI CAZY" license plate in full view.  It is thanks to that license plate that I can even tell this story.

I was riding along Susquehanna Avenue, minding my own business (in the bike lane), when suddenly a car pulled over in front of me.  It was obvious the driver had something to say.  So, I slowed down, and prepared my defenses as my imagination began producing all sorts of scenarios.

He exited the driver's side door with a beaming smile.  Thankfully there was nothing to defend.  He immediately asked, "Why are you so Fuji Crazy?"  I couldn't believe it.  I was astounded, but its a pretty simple answer, so I matter of factly replied, "because I could find these older bikes inexpensively but they are a good, quality bike."  The conversation didn't really get much beyond that, but he took a quick pic, and gave me his card.

As he drove away with a friendly wave, I read his card... "president of Advanced Sports Intl."  which is the company that owns Fuji!

Turns out he knew my friend too.  It really is a small world after all.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Bud Light Salutes, Real American Drivers: Here's to You Mr. Head-Shaker of Disdain Driver

Today we salute you Mr. Head-Shaker of Disdain Driver.  
Its obvious you really know your stuff.
(You really know your stuu-uuuff.)
If you see a cyclist trying to "share the road,"
You're NOT going to like it, and everyone else is going to know it.
Nobody on the road is immune to your watchful eye.
Especially if they're not in a car.
(Get a car you idiot!)
But you don't revert to yelling or cussing.
Mr. Head-Shaker of Disdain Driver is too civilized for that.
(You're so civ-il-iiized.)
You just think those words, silently, in your head,
as you shake it back and forth at your victim.
(Thinking and shaking.)