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Miyata 710: One of the high end models of the Miyata Cycling family. This Miyata is a late 1970s model.

Miyata is a bicycle manufacturer founded in Japan by Eisuke Miyata. Mr Miyata, a gunsmith employed by the Hitachi Kuni Kasama Clan, built Japan's first conventional, so called modern, bicycle at the Miyata Gun Factory in 1892. Eisuke, who held doubts concerning the future of gun manufacturing in Japan, got the idea for a new bike design after being asked by a foreigner to repair a conventional bicycle. The steel tubes used for the new Miyata bicycle were manufactured with the same technique as the piping used for guns. It was bored out lengthwise using a round steel rod. The entire bicycle, except the tires, was built from scratch at the gun factory. [1]

Miyata Brand is still around and very popular in Europe under the Dutch Koga-Miyata banner. [2]

[edit] Miyata Models

Late 1970s to mid-1980s Miyata Bikes have high-quality Japanese lugged steel frames and good Shimano or Suntour components [3]. Miyata's are best known for their touring bikes. The model names are most numeric (i.e. Miyata 710). After mid-1980s Miyata started to label them as written numbers (i.e. Miyata Seven Ten).

General rules of thumb for classifying Miyata Bicycle models can be given as follows [4]. 90 and 100 series were sports/entry level bicycles. 200 and 600 series and the 1000 model were touring bicycles, with the level of bicycle increasing with first digit in the series. In general, a 200 series touring bicycle would be roughly equivalent to a 300 series competition/fitness bicycle in terms of component levels, frame materials and value. 300, 400, 500, 700, 900 series were mid-range competition/fitness bicycles. Again, the level of bicycle increasing with first digit in the series. The top line, pro series bicycles were generally given names, like Team Miyata and Pro Miyata. 1000 series and X000 series bicycles, with the notable exception of the 1000 touring model, were competition/fitness models with non-ferrous frames.

Also, in general the last two digits of the model number was the speed. For example: 912 was a 9-series 12 speed and a 914 was a 9 series 14 speed. However this too is a generalization, with several exceptions.

  • Miyata 100/110 : This was the bottom of the range. Chromo main tubes, hi-ten stays, available in both men's and mixte styles.
  • Miyata 210 : This was a touring model. 1984 catalogue says the 210 used straight-gauge tubing. Dia-Compe cantilever brakes and Shimano triple drive train. Braze-ons on front and rear dropouts (no low-rider braze-ons in front), cantis front and rear, horizontal rear dropouts, one bottle braze-on, rear rack braze-ons, and flat-top fork crown.
  • Miyata 310/312 : This was a mid-range "road racing" model, with Shimano 105 throughout. The 310/312 had a shorter wheelbase than the touring models, but still plenty of clearance for fenders and wider tires. Sometimes it's referred to in newsgroups as a "sport-touring" model--a comfortable rig for day rides and commuting.
  • Miyata 512 Competition : This was a higher-end road bike than the 310/312, with more "aggressive" geometry.
  • Miyata 610 : This was a quality touring model, one step down from the 1000, with the same frame, but slightly lower level components. Mid 1980's 610's have triple-butted splined Chromoly frame tubing, very unusual quality tubing and construction for this price level. This bike is slightly lighter in weight than Trek 520/720 touring bikes, but of similar quality.
  • Miyata 710 : A mid- to high-end road bike. Early models had Suntour parts, including an odd 3-wheel rear derailleur. Probably uses the same frameset as the 910.
  • Miyata 912 : Miyata's high-end road bike, with Shimano 600 components.
  • Miyata 1000 : This was considered the finest, lightest off-the-peg touring bike of its time, with splined, triple-butted Chromo tubing. Some report the 610 to be stiffer than the 1000--probably a bit better for loaded touring. 1997 model had a mix of Shimano 600 and Deore XT parts (600 DT shifters, XT derailleurs). Miyata 1000 is still considered one of the finest stock touring frames ever.
  • Miyata Alumicross : This was the top-of-the-line model of Miyata's "cross" bikes (which included the Quickcross, Sportcross, and Triplecross), introduced in the late 90's. It had standard-size aluminum main tubes bonded to steel lugs and a Chromo fork. Seat and chain stays are steel, with the seat post binder bolt holding the seat stays to the seat post lug.

[edit] References

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