re: Juventus old bike. 27" wheels are nice and springy. I used to ride an old Schwinn Varsity (1970s) and it was great for a townie bike. 700c is where it's at for road though (most common modern wheel size for road, good size to go over stuff, wide variety of rims, cassettes, freewheels, tires).
I like that $99 Walmart hipster bike (Thruster), but the brakes are weak, levers plastic, and handlebar way too short, stem is flexy. Good for a city bike or disposable crit bike.
I would think the Juventus, with good tires, 1x1 freewheel, and a new chain, ought to be a nice ride, more fun than the pop tart Walmart special.
Scroll down here for discussion on old Juventus bikes (possibly made by Bianchi, a major road bike brand now) http://www.oldroads.com/arch/LTW2007_6_134_51_44_AM.html
If the Juventus rides straight and has wheels in good condition, ride the heck out of it and be happy. I wouldn't even paint it.
You can get crank cotter pins and $8-15 tires from Amazon, www.niagaracycle.com
, and Harris Cyclery (home of late Sheldon Brown, the 2 wheeled Encyclopaedia).
Here, take your pick of road slicks, semi treads, and even cyclocross tires for under $15 http://www.niagaracycle.com/index.php?cPath=8_81_8109&sort=2a&filter_id=&sort= 3a
Cottered cranks kind of suck, but many of the bottom bracket (axle) can be adjusted without pulling the cranks.
The pins can sometimes be found at places like Ace hardware, but here are some for $0.35 each (check, there were many sizes used, a few more common in USA in 1960s through 1980s)
Originally Posted by Industry_Hack
Oh, I just realized my comment made me look like a jerk, but I see that Thruster pop up online used, usually ridden twice, and at about half price. Not sure if it's the bike itself, or people just don't like them that much, but I'm still wary of a complete bike for $99. Gotta cut a lot of corners to get there.