80's Colnago project

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80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Sun Jun 19, 2011 11:49 pm

Hey all,

I picked up this mid 80's Colnago steel frame with an odd assortment of French CX Universal brakes and levers, Shimano 105 FD, Light Action 8 speed shifters, and a 500EX rear derailleur, along with some Alex DA22 rims that were completely knackered.

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Yes it's genuine, with clubs stamped into every lug, a proper serial number, internal brake routing, Colnago stamped drop outs, and correct pantographed chrome fork. It's obviously had a bad respray at some point but that will do okay for now until I can afford a proper professional spray job.

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The good bits include a Campagnolo aero seat post, a good UN54 sealed bottom bracket, a Dura-Ace headset, and a Cinelli stem and bars. The rest I need to find.

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I'd like to build this up with period correct Campagnolo group and nice wheels .. time to get researching, because I know very little about Campagnolo stuff. But since it's an Italian frame, I think it deserves an Italian groupo. Any advice on Campagnolo gear would be great!
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by BNA » Mon Jun 20, 2011 12:08 am

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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby BLU_FZ! » Mon Jun 20, 2011 12:08 am

Well done,i suspect what you have is a Sprint.Cromor tubing?If in fact it is a Sprint,these were a mid level frameset.As usual, the seat pin will determine the quality of the frameset.Far better than a Superlite.The Sprint i had,had a 26.8mm pin
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Mon Jun 20, 2011 12:21 am

Thanks dude I'm pretty happy with it. Cromor is stamped into the top of the bottom bracket. I had a feeling it was middle of the road Colnago but that's good enough for me. The Campagnolo seat post has 27.2mm stamped into it.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby BLU_FZ! » Mon Jun 20, 2011 12:42 am

Its not a Sprint then,or one i have any knowledge of?

Columbus Cromor is seam welded
Seamed tubes are produced by rolling sheet into a tube and
welding it up. The resulting pipe is then drawn down and cold
formrd

v

Columbus SL/SLX
The tubes are produced from a solid billet of steel pierced and
drawn to the necessary dimensions
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby jbchybridrider » Mon Jun 20, 2011 1:40 am

There's a bit of yellow around the chrome edges of the rear dropout it was probably the original color so maybe there original decals.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby Velo13 » Mon Jun 20, 2011 8:35 am

BLU_FZ! wrote:Columbus Cromor is seam welded


The first Cromor was seam welded, however by the early 90s it was seamless, and effectively a slightly thicker guage SL tube (for about a +10% weight penalty). This frame could be either.

Cromor is still a great riding tubeset though. You're on a winner.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby familyguy » Mon Jun 20, 2011 8:56 am

Cromor seems to be more or less equal to Reynolds 501 tubesets, at least in its earlier days as a seamed tubeset. Reynolds stayed seamed for 501, and Cromor went to seamless.

That should be a nice (looking and riding) bike when its done.

Jim
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Mon Jun 20, 2011 11:43 am

It's 126mm accross the rear dropouts, so I've gotta stay with 7 speed unless I reset the frame, right?

The campy seatpost is part of the Athena group.. I just bid on a matching headset. Might go with 80's Athena or Chorus. I have an almost complete set of mid 80's Shimano 105 that will get me going in the interim though, once I find some wheels.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby Velo13 » Mon Jun 20, 2011 11:53 am

lunar_c wrote:It's 126mm accross the rear dropouts, so I've gotta stay with 7 speed unless I reset the frame, right?


Pretty much, however getting the rear triangle reset to 130mm is not a chore, nor expensive. Not really required as 130mm will fit in with a little coaxing.

lunar_c wrote:The campy seatpost is part of the Athena group.. I just bid on a matching headset. Might go with 80's Athena or Chorus. I have an almost complete set of mid 80's Shimano 105 that will get me going in the interim though, once I find some wheels.


I have a New Old Stock Campagnolo Mirage "mini" group (derailleurs, shifters, brakes, hubs, 8s cassette) that might suit your needs. Early 90s. PM me if you are interested. Not sure of the spacing on the rear hub, but I think it is 130mm.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Mon Jun 20, 2011 2:05 pm

I think I'll stay with 7 speed for this one... but thank you!
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby Velo13 » Mon Jun 20, 2011 3:02 pm

lunar_c wrote:thank you!


Happy to help. I'll be watching this thread for updates!
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby koen » Mon Jun 20, 2011 6:38 pm

A lovely bike. I have a complete Triomphe Campag gruppo on a bike with GP4 tubular rims. Its all very tidy if that would suit you. Triomphe is an odd crankset though. I am new to this forum so hope its okay to offer it to you. I was just thinking of taking it off the frame its on as I don't ever ride it ..just collect stuff you know. I actually have a lovely Colnago of similar vintage but I put 10speed ergos on it with a custom built 7speed cluster that works with them. (Its my schmick looking Sunday bike)
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby munga » Mon Jun 20, 2011 7:17 pm

most clydesdales were cromor.
pitty43 wrote:Thanks all for your help. Better change my Gumtree add now.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/retroclassiccycling/
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Tue Jun 21, 2011 12:20 am

So today I cut and polished the frame and cleaned up the bars and stem, which was royally stuck in the forks and required a bit of heat to get it out.

Once they were apart I gave the forks a and stem a quick going over with autosol and repacked the bearings.

The trick with this bike is going to be not to over restore any particular part, because I want to keep the patina overall the same as the frame.

I'm also thinking about sticking with Shimano and going for Dura Ace, as the headset on the bike is 7400 series Dura Ace and I quite like that group.

Pics tomorrow in the day light ..
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby Velo13 » Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:15 am

Hey lunar_c, I like your style. Chuck whatever you want on it, and love it! More power to you and the "patina".

I actually don't like the "perfect" restos that you sometimes see on the "cool" websites.

To me they are an exercise in futility. I restore bikes close to their original specification, so they can be ridden and admired!

That said, I usually make some concessions to modernity - bottom brakets usually get an upgrade to a cartridge model, I always replace brake pads and brake outers with something teflon lined, and new tyres are certainly better than old. Otherwise, clean it up, and ride the hell out of it.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby brokenbus » Tue Jun 21, 2011 12:44 pm

How did you apply the heat to get the stem out?
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Tue Jun 21, 2011 12:49 pm

I must admit I went for that "perfect" look with the last bike I restored. However the cassette and derailleurs were never perfect, showing their years of faithful service and I liked that patina. I might restore this bike later on, but for now I'm enjoying it's character.

I agree with you on the bottom bracket (my flat bar's bottom bracket bearings just went after about 1500km) and was lucky enough to get a perfect UN54 bottom bracket with the bike which I cleaned up yesterday and pressed back into service.

I usually use SRAM chain and cable outers/inners (stainless) and modern pads though, as you said. My preference for tyres is Continental Ultra Race. They're great tyres and are nice and simple visually which looks right on old bikes.

Just trying to find some nice wheels at the moment and I can get the bike going.. then piece together the groupset I want later, when I decide!
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Tue Jun 21, 2011 12:55 pm

brokenbus wrote:How did you apply the heat to get the stem out?


A little heat from a MAP gas torch and some penetrating lubricant down the steerer tube through the fork crown, then I gently tapped it out with a long 1/2" socket extension bar. It was REALLY stuck in there! I cleaned the steerer tube right out with degreaser and a rag, and once I cleaned up the stem I put Loctite Nickel Anti-Sieze compound on the thread, the retaining bolt and the quill so hopefully it won't happen again.

Did this on a piece of carpet with the frame upside down. Be careful whenever applying heat .. you'll likely get yucky old grease running out onto the paint so wrap the headset in a rag.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby Velo13 » Tue Jun 21, 2011 4:43 pm

lunar_c wrote:I must admit I went for that "perfect" look with the last bike I restored. However the cassette and derailleurs were never perfect, showing their years of faithful service and I liked that patina. I might restore this bike later on, but for now I'm enjoying it's character.


My absolute favourite bike is a 1993 Eddy Merckx MX Leader. I bought it last year after searching high and low for years.

I wanted a beautiful example. I tried and failed on many auctions, negotiated and failed on many sales. Finally, I won a very "well loved" example at a good price. I immediately set about getting all the parts and decals to repaint and make her beautiful.

One ride was all it took. With all her battle scars and mismatched fork, she feels fantastic to ride. Now, I can't bear to part with her long enough for her to get a face lift.

Every time I ride her, I ride her like I stole her.

Would that be the case if she were pristine?
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Tue Jun 21, 2011 6:56 pm

True.. though this will probably end up being restored eventually so I can start the process all over. Then I'll know the story behind each battle scar!

I took some proper pics today after I cut and polished the frame, polished the fork, and reassembled the frame with fresh bearings and grease. I also sprayed the insides of the tubes with silicone spray to prevent rust.

Here are the pics:

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The fork came up well, it's almost blemish free.

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The paint gleams .. I wonder if the major chips could be touched up?

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The Cinelli bars and stem.

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Underneath the bottom bracket. You can see the UN54 bottom bracket installed. The cut outs are pretty cool. Were these originally for cooling, or to allow access to the bearings with a grease gun? They sure let a lot of dirt in!

Image
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby HappyHumber » Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:14 pm

lunar_c wrote:The fork came up well, it's almost blemish free.


Indeedly

lunar_c wrote:Underneath the bottom bracket. You can see the UN54 bottom bracket installed. The cut outs are pretty cool. Were these originally for cooling, or to allow access to the bearings with a grease gun? They sure let a lot of dirt in!


Well... I always thought it was for the opposite; drainage - remembering from the era of the 1980s the loose ball bearing BBs were the norm It probably would have had one of those little plastic concertina sleeve inserts squashed between the cups. And of course a true athlete/professional would ensure the bearings would be attended to regularly anyway.

Though with holes - or slots - as big as these they're arguably a weight saving device more so than drainage.

for my more 'average specimen' builds I always drill a small hole ~8mm in any BB shell that doesn't have any such vent. I was shocked when I rode a brand new bike twice, once being caught in rain and then shortly afterwards stripping the bike how much water was trapped in the shell. It kind of also reinforced something Aldo at Quantum Bicycle Manufacturers had told me once before as well.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:24 pm

Makes sense. Thanks Kym!

PS : has anyone got some wheels tucked away I can buy and use to get this thing rolling with?
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby HappyHumber » Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:26 pm

Also... is that chrome under the paint on drive side of the shell?

You know that will definitely have to see the light of day again! especially on the right chain stay..
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby lunar_c » Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:41 pm

I think so..
That would point to it being a Super Sprint, which had Columbus SL in chrome on the chain and seat stays and regular Chromor in the down tubes according to the original 80's Colnago catalogues/web.

I'd say it's definitely not the original paint .. maybe it was repainted because the chrome was pitting on the chain stays? but it has to stay for now until I can afford to have the paint redone professionally and the fork/chainstays rechromed.
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Re: 80's Colnago project

Postby Velo13 » Tue Jun 21, 2011 8:48 pm

HappyHumber wrote:Though with holes - or slots - as big as these they're arguably a weight saving device more so than drainage.


Yep, the holes are to remove weight. That's a little more love than the usual Cromor frame would receive.
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