This was a lot of fun for me for a couple different reasons. First, I'm not bike mechanical, replacing a cable, or a spoke is really about the limit of my mechanical ability, so this little project stretched me a bit. Since the project was predicated on trying to do the most good for this bike with the least money it forced me to baby the parts in the process of breathing life back into the bike. The money was spent on new tubes and tires, and cables, and housings. I probaby should have replaced the break pads, but they looked new (and there were no replacement pads avaiable locally at the time). So I've Told R to check the brakes after each ride, looking for the disintegration that would occur if the rubber was degraded by ozone.
It was also fun to mess with old technology. The bike is a simple yet elegant machine, and working on this thing helped me remember that simplicity works just as well as the more complex stuff (like the Campy 10 speed triple on the Big Horse).
Finally, it was fun working with my friends, Kent, Beth, and Cory. These folks know their stuff, gave me straight scoop, and never poo pooed the idea of keeping this old bike rolling. Unless you are your own complete mechanic, definitely patronize your Local Bike Shop. I know not everyone at the LBS is a master craftsperson, but these three are and they helped make this a fun project for me.
I'll let you know how the how my frined R does riding his bike.