New answers tagged seatpost
Yes, on my 1975 Peugeot UO18, the brakes are located on the intermediate stays and the seat stays are used for the rack mount. The brake configuration is visible here. (photo source: http://oldtenspeedgallery.com/owner-submitted/joans-1975-peugeot-mixte-uo-18/#.VWFRtmDDz88)
For road bikes of that age, showing just "a fistful of seat post" was considered good frame fit and style. Otherwise the frame was likely too small for the rider. Of course that was before the advent of sloping top tubes. If the bottom bracket is not too high, stand over height of the top tube should be no problem even with such small seat post extension.
Who says its the original seat post? (It likely isn't.) There are maximum amounts of insertion (determined by the frame; there may be things inside the frame or weird shaped tubes) and minimum lengths of insertion (determined by the seat post; if its not inserted enough, you can damage the seat tube or worse) -- it is unlikely, but someone may have needed ...
In this manual, they state the torque for the Giant Defy seatpost should be around 50kgf-cm (5Nm). I know this is for the carbon frame, but they should be similar. You can buy a torque wrench for around $30, which you should, because otherwise there is a high chance you will under or over tight it. I know $30 is a pain in the ass, but think this will keep ...
It does not take much torque to snug up the seat post. With a long lever yes you could damage the frame. Cross one finger over the Allen key so you have a short lever and snug it up. See if you can twist the seat. If so snug each up another 1/4 turn and test.
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