Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking
Disclaimer: I place blame for this thread on a certain Warren Meade for writing an article for RIDE magazine highlighting Beppe Saronni's 1983 Colnago Mexico. Totally inspired, I have re-visited that article a number of times to drool over Beppe's bike. I was intrigued by Saronni's use of the Campagnolo 50th Anniversary group set and it's success in the pro-peleton. Has this group set been used by others in anger? I knew a similar bike was destined for my future.
I came across this frame in Brisbane and fell in love with it. It's been re-finished but that's OK. The previous owner spent 40 hours plus just prepping the rear end for re-chroming alone. In the 'flesh' the chrome work is deep and lustrous. The paint is perfect and the decals are Cyclemondo reproductions positioned over the painted surfaces just like the originals. The decal set is based in the Colnago decal set of 1983 - in honour of Saronni winning the World Championship in 1982.
The frame is a Colnago Mexico which is different from Beppe Saronni's Del Tongo team bike which was a Colnago Nuovo Mexico Profil. I don't care - I really appreciate the time and workmanship that went into this frame's re-finish.
What I have tried to re-create was the component mix that Saronni used on his bike.
I must say that the Mexico's were built from a thinner walled SL tube set and with the components fitted, it weighs in at 20.5 lbs and is my lightest bike (58cm c to c) from that era.
It is simply beautiful to ride with a neutral geometry. It just seems to be forgotten as you glide through the countryside (on a nice day). Colnago's do seem to fit me well and I like the way they are responsive yet very predictable and stable.
Component mix: The group set is a Colnago 50th Anniversary but the pedals have been changed to a Campagnolo Titanium track pedal with Binda Extra straps. The toe clips are Christophe (but should be a Colnago branded toe clip), the seat post flutes are painted in the Italian colours like Saronni's, black Campy brake cable housings, saddle is a Concor Confort, stem and bars are 3TTT both engraved/pantographed with the Colnago logo, white cloth bar tape, TA alloy white topped bidon cage and Mavic rimmed wheels. I have also used a Campagnolo 50th anniversary 6 speed freewheel.
Last edited by GaryF on Fri Jul 05, 2013 10:23 pm, edited 5 times in total.
Well Done Gary. To me you have created a masterpeice. Thankyou for the inspiration.
After last week trolling so many pics and pages of the same, saving pics and pages for all their worth. I have the same/simmilar project on the cards after 'finally' completing the repair to my Sarroni. It only took 3yrs to get this far and with a Paino and Jim Bundy at Peters paint shop already, it could well be another 3 yrs before mine will see daylight.
Fight till the end n never give up. Cadel Evans 2012
Thanks im_no_pro, much appreciated.
Thanks Saro28, good things come to those who wait (so I've been told). I hope the next stage of your re-co is a little quicker than the 3 years you suspect it will be. The 'Saronni' paint scheme is pretty basic but it has become one of the iconic Colnago looks - I really like it even in other base colours.
Thanks seddo - that Meade fellow has a lot to answer for! His well written Retro Reviews have probably inspired quite a few unsuspecting bike 'nuts' costing them lots of $$$ in the end. Damn him.
Thanks stevendavid75, your kind words mean a lot.
Thanks humanbeing, I find it beautiful too. This is the era that captures my imagination the most.
Thanks matt1986, I started collecting components, that appear on this frame, in the early 1990's. I have used them on another frame but when I saw this frame I knew I had to put them on this frame. It is still not quite complete. To exactly emulate Beppe Saronni's 1983 bike's components, the one featured in Warren Meade's article, I have to source a pair of Colnago branded toe clips - one day. Thanks for your kind words.
Thanks Mustang. I wonder how the Columbus (Thin walled) SL fits in with the Columbus KL of your beautiful Pinarello?
Thanks morini. I once read an interview with Robert Millar (top British rider of the 70's/80's). He said that most of the pro peleton (of that time) would want to ride a Colnago if given the chance - and the Colnago would have to be red.
Thanks silverlight, but I can't take much of the credit. I bought the frame off a guy from Brisbane who had it refurbished. He told me that he spent over 40 hours polishing the rear forks/stays in preparation for re-chroming alone. He said the whole frame was completely and lovingly prepped for painting and chroming - nothing was left for chance - no fingerprints - nothing - and it shows. I simply couldn't go past it when it came up for sale. He told me the names of the chrome plater and painter but, typical me, I forgot their names.
He also had a Masi frame for sale at the same time and that was at another level again. I couldn't bring myself to look at it - it was well out of my price bracket.
Normally, I would prefer an original frame but, in this case, I was dazzled by it's beauty and workmanship.
I had admired Saronni's Del Tongo bikes for quite a while and this frame, although not a faithful reproduction, just reminded me of his bikes. A simple, yet attractive finish. Warren Meade's article was my guide and I had most of the components so 'the planets seemed to be aligned'. Time to build a dream bike.
I have been waiting for quite a few years (35) to have such a bike but it's a pity I'm a bit long in the tooth to really give it a workout but I'm probably just old enough to truly appreciate it's design, aesthetics and function from that era.
Thanks silverlight for your constant support.
Absolutely the best build I've seen in quite some time
Well done with painstakingly collecting all the correct parts for this build
Far better than what I've done by just slapping on some modern groupsets on my 'nago's
Thanks very much Madrider. Actually, it was a fun build and, strange as it may seem, I had most of the parts on other frames. I just had to do a bit of mixing and matching for the most part. I did have to source some parts like the correct Concor Confort saddle, bottle cage and brake hoods.
I think the good thing about a classic Colnago frame is that they really suit a modern build too, just like your Colnago's.
If not Pushies Galore, how about attending Noosa Strade Bianche-Show & Shine???
10 August 2013.
John Murray's Colnago Pantografata won the best in show last year.
I've always wanted to attend Noosa but it seems that I always have to attend something else pre-booked by my social calendar director (wife). This year it would be great to attend and have a good look around at all the amazing bikes present.
From the little snippet of John Murray's bike, he was a deserved winner. It looks amazing.
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