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A couple months ago, I found a Peugeot UO-8 frame by the side of the road in Brooklyn.  I lugged it home in the pouring rain, eager to strip off the MAFAC brakes and leather saddle, which have become hard to find.  After I cleaned up the frame in my workshop though, I realized that it was in fantastic condition!  Immediately, I knew this Peugeot was going to live again.  Read on to learn about the restoration process…

peugeot_uo8_06  I removed the clunky old cottered crankset (by cutting straight through the bottom bracket axle, gotta love a Dremel) and replaced it with a modern three-piece bottom bracket.  Action Bicycle makes French-sized cup-and-cone bottom bracket sets, and I always keep one or two new ones on hand for projects like this.

I installed a full Simplex drivetrain: a Simplex alloy crankset, a Peugeot-branded SX-610 long-cage rear derailleur and matching SX-A22 front derailleur.  Shifting is buttery smooth thanks to a set of Italian Gian Roberts shifters.  A set of very well preserved Peugeot-branded Weinmann centerpull brakes and chrome brake levers with brand new rubber hoods provide plentiful stopping power.


I replaced the missing fork with a new chrome one, which had the added benefit of making the frame compatible with normal 22.2mm diameter stems – no need to for a “death stem” on this bike!  Instead, I installed a nice Raleigh stem that’s been living in my parts box for far too long.

I also replaced all the cables and housing, and the new white housing matches the frame nicely.  I bought a brand new 27″ alloy wheelset and white-wall tires – baby’s got new shoes!  The SunRace freewheel I added has 6 speeds, making this bike a proper 12 speed now.

To finish it off right, I got a set of Peugeot-branded Weinmann centerpull brake calipers and some gorgeous chrome brake levers with new rubber hoods.  The fresh cork bar tape is comfy and classic, probably my favorite go-to bar covering – all the style of leather for a fraction of the cost, and probably better cushioning too.

I took this bike for a ride around the neighborhood yesterday, and felt for the first time the famous Peugeot ride that so many vintage collectors rave about.  Yes, this is a 70’s “boom bike” with unexceptional tubing and stamped drop-outs, but wow does it have a great ride!  It handles well and feels nimble yet steady.  If I see another UO-8 in the future, I’ll be sure to grab it!

22 Responses to “1970’s Peugeot UO-8 Restored”

  1. Lisa Schwartz says:

    I have a white mens U08 Peugeot, I think. I purchased it in 1974ish. The tires are shot and not sure about the gears. It has been sitting in my garage for years. Would you be interested in it?


  2. Chris says:

    Well done, love it! Can you please tell us where you purchased all your upgrade parts from? Was it all from Action Bicycles?

  3. naptrax says:

    Hello Chris,

    The fork, bottom bracket cups, wheels, bar tape, chain, and tires came from Action Bicycles. The crankset, brakes, brake levers, pedals, and derailleurs were all vintage bits that collected up at various bike parts swaps or online. I keep a decent collection of parts on hand to do vintage restorations like these.

  4. naptrax says:

    Hello Lisa,

    If you live in the New York area, I’d be interested in your bike. You can reach me at mechastudios at usa dot net. Thanks!

  5. Greg says:

    I love the transformation of your bicycle. I am working on a early ’70’s white U08 right now as my first restoration project. I am also a NYC guy so I am interested in where you got some of your parts and also I would love to swap ideas. I also have a ’71 blue U08 as my next project once I complete the white one. Great job!!

  6. naptrax says:

    Hello Greg,

    You can reach me at the email address I published in the comment above. Feel free to send me notes there, I check that daily whereas I don’t check the blog all that often. I also recommend that you visit the Time’s Up co-op in Williamsburg Brooklyn. They have a huge back-stock of old parts, some of which would good for your restoration. Check out http://www.times-up.org for the address and times the shop is open.


  7. Greg says:

    I emailed regarding your great restoration but I did not hear back from you. I have a question. Where did you get the adapter claw to install a more modern rear derailleur? I am replacing the Simplex with a Suntour VGT Luxe but I need an adapter claw. Any advice is appreciated!

  8. agnes says:

    What tires are this please?

  9. naptrax says:


  10. Thiha Maw says:

    Hey, I like to buy the Peugeot, what the size of the frame?

  11. Jim says:

    I have done some restoration work on a couple of these U-08’s also, and am always looking for bike shops that have components for this niche market. When I searched action bicycles there were many of them. Can you provide a link for me?

  12. Jim says:

    Quote: “Action Bicycle makes French-sized cup-and-cone bottom bracket sets”
    I did a search on this and it comes up as actionbicycle.com located in NJ, however it seems that they sell specificly to dealers. Is this the right one?

  13. Eric E says:

    Nice job!
    I had a blue UO-8 bought new back in the day, my first 10 speed. That tells you I’m an old guy. I saved up for it and was so thrilled when it came in. Your build is nice, and better than the original set-up, esp the crankset and rear derailleur.
    The chrome front fork was not on the original UO-8 though. I always loved the look of the PX-10 s in white with chrome fork end and rear triangle. It just looked lighter in white.
    I have a nice vintage Trek 715 hand built in Waterloo Wisconsin that I have been riding lately. Reynolds 531, Campy brakes and hubs, high-pressure clinchers Avocet FasGrip slicks 22-23 mm and can take 115 psi, but I ride at 90-95 psi. Suntour cyclone II derailleurs. Funfunfun!

  14. Justin R says:

    The bike looks amazing! nice job naptrax

    For anyone wondering you don’t have to use a vintage Derailleur
    I put a Shimano Tourney 6/7-Speed Mountain Bicycle Rear Derailleur – RD-TX35 on my PX-10 and because of the way the hanger is built in on the Derailleur it goes past the hanger on the frame.

    Jim Action Bicycle is just a distributor, you can call the number listed on their site to find out what stores carry their products. If they carry them they can order them.
    I haven’t verified it yet because I haven’t ordered and/or bought it but I called them and they said the part number for the French Sized Bottom bracket is 550/1163

  15. Peter says:

    Restoring one of these bikes right now but since the back brake, is not manufactured anymore i was wondering if you kew where i could order it from?
    Please let me Know

  16. Dallas A says:

    Have an early 70’s Peugeot with the cottered crank set that I have restored only to discover that one of the crank arms/possibly the bottom bracket spindle is bent. It is uncomfortable to ride and I would very much like to replace with a non-cottered set up like you did. I see lots of options, even sealed cartridge ones, but I cannot seem to find any detail on spindle length. A rough measurement on mine is close to 140MM. Most of what I am seeing are 107, 113, 116. Nothing that even approaches 140. When I put a tapered spindle set of cranks do they just require less clearance and one of those others will work or do I need to get an exact measurement and just keep looking? Thank you and fantastic looking restoration!

  17. naptrax says:

    Hi Dallas, it sounds like you are measuring your bottom bracket spindle incorrectly, as I have never heard of one that is 140mm. Or maybe the cottered spindle is longer than a square taper. The bottom bracket spindle length is usually dictated by the crank arms. So I’d suggest starting with the cranks and then seeing what the manufacturer recommends. My general “rule of thumb” is to have the shortest spindle length possible that still allows the chain ring to clear the drive-side chain stay. You can also add 2-3mm on cartridge bottom brackets by using a thin spacer washer that goes between the drive-side cup and the bottom bracket shell. Check out Sheldon Brown and Park Tools’ websites for more detailed info and diagrams.

  18. Charlie Oerter says:

    Great Job!

    I purchased a UO8 in 1973 when I was discharged from the Army. Rode it for years and finally sold it and purchased a Hybrid (thought I was done with road bikes). Since 2010 I’ve picked up and restored some old Schwinn’s & Fuji, but never forgot the ride of the UO8. So in 2015 went on the hunt, was looking for one in Yellow (my old color), only found ones that were beat to hell or to high priced. Finally settled on a green 1972 UO8. Have been enjoying it ever since. Its great to see these bikes returned to the road and not the dump.


  19. Michele says:

    Charlie Oerter. I have a yellow one that I’m looking to sell. It has some rust but for the most it looks pretty good and still has the cowhide seat.

  20. Charlie says:

    Send some photos to oerterch@gmail.com and we can talk.


  21. Dylan says:

    Hey, I have the same model frame you have here, and I’m having some difficulty finding an appropriate bottom bracket. Which bottom bracket had you picked up from Action? Thanks!

  22. Thomas Perry says:

    Attention all viewers: I have a 1973 white U08 that a friend was throwing away so I grabbed it – does anyone out there have interest in this gem? Also, I bought a blue U08 when I was in HS (1973), needs restoration, I’m not handy enough to do it myself. Any recommendationss? I live in Baldwin, NY (Long Island). I worked my ass off as a kid to purchase this beauty so it’s got sentimental value. Feel free to call 516-510-8543. Thanks!

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