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Murray Overview

Murray sold department store level bicycles from the 1930s → 1999 1)

The 1981 Murray Baja was a crappy converted cruiser which weighted 38 pounds. And only cost $80. It got all of the other makers worried. To be fair, it was a good introduction to the off road concept for kids.

Somebody gave Gary a Baja for Christmas on his birthday around 1981, because they only cost $80-90 and it was worth it for the humor element . It was such a joke next to a Ritchey that we gave it to a guy who was broke but loved bikes and he rode it into the ground, which wasn't hard, because it was really heavy and a strong rider would tear the frame apart in short order. Charlie Kelley, mtbr

Murray factory in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee
The Fun Factory facebook

1981 Baja

The first mass produced mountain bike. The 1981 catalog called these “10 speed Touring Bajas”, while also stating they were “Rugged and ready for on and off-the-road biking fun.” Early days.

Murray Baja
Murray Baja fitrecovery

1982 Baja

Nearly identical to the 1981, the 1982 Baja has bigger spoke guards on the wheels and all-black tires.

Compare catalogs at: 1982 and 1981

1983 Baja 9000

The 1983 Baja 9000 2) came with upgraded name and parts. SunTour AG front and rear, $249, 37 pounds Nov 1983 Bicycling mag.

1983 Baja 9000
1983 Baja 9000 budgetbicyclectr

1984 Murray Baja 5000

After “Baja 9000,” they backed down a few thousand…

The Official Manufacturer of Bicycles for the 1984 Olympics Murray Ad

Luckily, the Murray mountain bike racing team didn't exist yet. However, they did sponsor an Olympic road racing team:

Before the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics American manufacturer Murray signed on to sponsor the US Cycling team as well as the legendary 7-Eleven Team. There was one major problem though. As a producer of low-cost bicycles and lawn equipment, Murray didn’t have a clue what sorts of equipment real bike racers used or needed. So they brought in an up-and-coming American frame builder, Ben Serotta, to build their bikes for them. theproscloset

1984 Baja 5000
1984 Baja 5000 17qq

1985 Murray Baja 3000

As model numbers shrink, so do profit margins. The internet nearly has no mention of the existence of this model, other than the one for sale on the right from New Hampshire.

Found another one at

1985 Murray Baja 3000
1985 Murray Baja 3000 facebook

1989 Baja SC Street Cycle

A 1991 review from Bicycling Mag states that the Baja SC is 35.5 pounds, 10 speeds, 27×1.75 tires (barely mtb width,) with Falcon components. No braze-ons. Un-laced spokes. $109. The example to the right has a 1989 sticker.

Baja SC Weld
1989 Baja SC welds bikeforums

The review is worth reading, and should be given to anyone considering buying a department store bike.

After rolling through a puddle atop a long hill, I experienced the most intense adrenaline rush I've had on a bike since the time I overtook a line of cars with my steel-rimmed, effectively brakeless Varsity during a descent of South Mountain in a thunderstorm. Bicycling Magazine, January 1991

1989 Baja SC
1989 Baja SC Street Cycle bikeforums

Production Notes

[1]. all unknown

murray/start.txt · Last modified: 2023/08/04 16:28 by mtbtimeline