The Dancing Chain

Vintage, yesteryear and retro biking

The Dancing Chain

Postby frailer5 » Fri May 11, 2012 6:55 am

Frank J. Berto's classic book, now in 4th Edition (2012 updated). I had not bought previous editions. Others may have. Am bowled over by this book. It's a history of the 20th C. bicycle, not just the RD.
For anyone who has not come across it, highly recommended. I believe there are extensive additions in this update. Not sure what the print run was, but there were pre-orders on it, (which I did).
Got it through fishpond(dot)com(dot)au.
Beautiful photos and line/tech drawings. Entertaining in the text, as Frank always is; fondly remembered from when I used to buy Bicycling mag in the early 80s.

The Dancing Chain
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by BNA » Fri May 11, 2012 9:41 am

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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby koen » Fri May 11, 2012 9:41 am

+1
Excellent book for impressing people with how to tell between 1967 and 1968 nuovo record rear mechs! My best xmas present ever
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby Clydesdale Scot » Fri May 11, 2012 6:34 pm

I have had my copy for 2 weeks. Plan to go through it soon.
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby sparkyscott » Sat May 12, 2012 12:31 am

Mine's on its way - is there anything about Di2/EPS in the latest edition?
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby frailer5 » Sat May 12, 2012 7:19 am

sparkyscott wrote:Mine's on its way - is there anything about Di2/EPS in the latest edition?


Not by the looks... Could have been editorial/publishing time frame couldn't fit it in. :|

Or, more to the point, thorough testing time. :wink:
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby frailer5 » Fri Jul 13, 2012 10:04 pm

Well, have reached the end of the historical stuff, a lot of it esoteric, but interesting nonetheless. Up to Ch 15 "How Derailleurs Work" which looks to be a great read (he is da man, after all...). But here's an excerpt from his take on current stuff.

Drop-handlebar road bikes had a resurgence in 2009, which turned down in 2010. Today's road bikes, especially carbon-fiber models, are ugly, expensive, harsh-riding, and suitable only for racing.


:lol:
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby Lots of steel bikes » Tue Oct 23, 2012 7:35 pm

I bought this book and I'm a bit disappointed. Keen to find out more about Shimano Arabesque and Golden Arrow I looked up the index to find nothing. So I scanned through and still found nothing. Then I thought that Arabesque and Golden Arrow might be 'local' names, but no, seems to be accepted names worldwide. Even if just variations of 600 I thought they would rate mention. Any thoughts? I guess someone will point out where I missed them in the book.
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby frailer5 » Thu Oct 25, 2012 4:07 pm

Yep. Not a work of academe; more a sorta chronological ramble from a guy who was pivotal in the 70s~early 80s for actually trying to assess with some rigour the performance of derailleurs. Blew the whistle on some sacrosanct names/models.
If you want to chase specifics, Mike Sweatman's DisrealiGears site may have it buried somewhere. You'll have fun looking, either way. :lol:

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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby Lots of steel bikes » Thu Oct 25, 2012 5:56 pm

frailer5 wrote:Yep. Not a work of academe; more a sorta chronological ramble from a guy who was pivotal in the 70s~early 80s for actually trying to assess with some rigour the performance of derailleurs. Blew the whistle on some sacrosanct names/models.
If you want to chase specifics, Mike Sweatman's DisrealiGears site may have it buried somewhere. You'll have fun looking, either way. :lol:

Arabesque


What a great site. Can't believe I hadn't stumbled across it before now. Thanks for that flailer5.
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby wqlava1 » Thu Oct 25, 2012 11:01 pm

Lots of steel bikes wrote:I bought this book and I'm a bit disappointed. Keen to find out more about Shimano Arabesque and Golden Arrow I looked up the index to find nothing. So I scanned through and still found nothing. Then I thought that Arabesque and Golden Arrow might be 'local' names, but no, seems to be accepted names worldwide. Even if just variations of 600 I thought they would rate mention. Any thoughts? I guess someone will point out where I missed them in the book.


I have Golden Arrow cranks on my fixie, and in my research on velobase.com and the like, it seems they are 105 not 600 level. I have gold anodised hubs (one is a Phil), and gold VeloSolo chainring and cog that I picked up cheap,but no-one has ever picked up how they "match".
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby frailer5 » Fri Oct 26, 2012 4:43 am

Lots of steel bikes wrote:
frailer5 wrote:Yep. Not a work of academe; more a sorta chronological ramble from a guy who was pivotal in the 70s~early 80s for actually trying to assess with some rigour the performance of derailleurs. Blew the whistle on some sacrosanct names/models.
If you want to chase specifics, Mike Sweatman's DisrealiGears site may have it buried somewhere. You'll have fun looking, either way. :lol:

Arabesque


What a great site. Can't believe I hadn't stumbled across it before now. Thanks for that frailer5.


If you delve into his 'Documents' and 'Trivia', he's a funny guy; but fascinating stuff at the same time.

unexpected Lance reference :P ( '... you could almost get to like him' ) :lol:
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby il padrone » Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:38 am

Lots of steel bikes wrote:I bought this book and I'm a bit disappointed. Keen to find out more about Shimano Arabesque and Golden Arrow I looked up the index to find nothing. So I scanned through and still found nothing. Then I thought that Arabesque and Golden Arrow might be 'local' names, but no, seems to be accepted names worldwide. Even if just variations of 600 I thought they would rate mention. Any thoughts? I guess someone will point out where I missed them in the book.

Arabesque is just the styling on Shimano 600 EX, nothing more. The design was no different and after the arabesque decor was dropped there was still 600 EX.

I think Berto is more concerned with function rather than form. In fact, I know he would be.
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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Re: The Dancing Chain

Postby L'iota » Sat Oct 27, 2012 7:43 pm

G'day Lots of Steel Bikes
On Page 280 figure 11.86 'The 1983 Shimano 105 gruppo'. If you look closely at the cranks and rear deraileur you can see the characteristic Golden Arrow logo. On the back of the off crank it has '105' and 170 the latter being the crank length. Presumably the Golden Arrow was the first of the '105' line.
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