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  1. #1
    me have long head tube TallRider's Avatar
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    Tange Champion #2 the same as Tange #2 tubeset?

    I've got a couple of nice Centurion road frames from the 1980's:
    And I'm wondering about the difference in their tubesets. I know that Tange #1 used in the Ironman Expert is slightly heavier than Tange #2 produced at the same time. According to the most knowledgeable-sounding post in this thread, Tange #1 wasn't heavier because it was lower-end, but rather because it had thicker-gauge top- and downtubes to better deal with frame flex since lugged frames couldn't use oversized tubing.

    The Tange Champion tubing used in the 1984 models seems to be reverse. Champion #2 was used in the Comp TA (Centurion's second-highest model, came with Shimano 600) and Champion #1 tubing was used in the Turbo (Centurion's top model, came with Suntour Superbe Pro components).

    I'm curious as to the relationship between the Champion #1, 2, etc. tubeset and the Tange #1, 2, etc. tubeset used a few years later. Basically, I'm trying to decide how to build these two frames up, and whether I should expect their ride and flex characteristics to be any different from each other.
    And this is useful knowledge to have in the database.
    Last edited by TallRider; 11-21-08 at 09:32 AM.

  2. #2
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    I'm confident T-Mar in C & V would know the answer to this question. My '83 Centurion Pro Tour has Tange Champion #2, and it's a full-on touring frame. Double eyelets front and rear, rack bosses halfway up the fork legs, it even came stock with a rear rack on it. I remember seeing a thread in C and V about this once, someone noted that it was interesting that Centurion used Tange Champion #2 on a bike clearly intended for loaded touring because Tange Champion #2 had a max. rider weight limit. I also remember in the same thread that Tange Champion #1 had an even lower max. rider weight limit. I don't know if either one of these statements is actually true, but it's obvious that the Centurion folks were confident in Tange Champion #2's ability to hold up under a big load. At the time, of course, touring bikes were a significant part of the market, and competition was keen. Trek's 720 with extremely long chainstays and Reynolds 531 tubing comes to mind, and while that's a bike on my wish list, most ride reports I've heard say it's a pretty flexy bike. As always, frame size would make a significant difference I'm sure-
    Last edited by well biked; 11-30-06 at 06:28 AM.

  3. #3
    me have long head tube TallRider's Avatar
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    Okay, so it sounds as if Tange Champion #2 was thicker-gauge tubing than Champion #1, whereas later in the 80's the number-ordering was reversed and Tange #1 tubing was thicker-gauge than Tange #2. Thanks man. I'd also posted this question in the C&V forum so I'll see if I get any hits there.
    Last edited by TallRider; 11-30-06 at 08:17 AM.

  4. #4
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Gosh, Tange... that brings back memories... I used to ride a lot of Nishikis, another brand of WSI like Centurion. As I recall, all the Tange #1,2,3,4 are the exactly the same 4130 chromoly alloy. The designations refer to the tubing configuration I think....

    Tange #1 is 0.8/0.5/0.8mm double-butted
    Tange #2 is 0.9/0.6/0.9mm
    Tange #3 is 1.0/0.7/1.0mm
    Tange #4 is 0.9/0.7/0.9mm

    Although all the seat-tubes were the same I think, not sure what the specs are on that. I've got a Tange catalog somewhere in my time-capsule in the attic. In reality, there's not much of a difference between the tubing really. Weight differences are like 0.25 lbs for identical frames made with those different tubesets.
    Last edited by DannoXYZ; 11-30-06 at 10:15 AM.

  5. #5
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    In reality, there's not much of a difference between the tubing really.
    I agree. The frame-only weight of a 19 3/4" (center to top) Centurion Accordo frame with Tange Infinity tubing (chromoly, but lower-end tubeset) is 4 lbs., 15 ounces. The frame-only weight of the frame I mention in my above post, the Centurion Pro Tour (21" frame) with Tange Champion #2, is 4 lbs., 13 ounces. The Pro Tour is fully chromed beneath the paint, though, so that would add a few ounces. For comparison, my '83 Schwinn le tour luxe (23") frame-only weight is 5 lbs., 8 oz. The '83 le tour luxe is generic, plain gauge 4130. No real significant difference in weight between the frames, what difference there is would be mostly attributed to frame size-

  6. #6
    me have long head tube TallRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by well biked
    I agree. The frame-only weight of a 19 3/4" (center to top) Centurion Accordo frame with Tange Infinity tubing (chromoly, but lower-end tubeset) is 4 lbs., 15 ounces. The frame-only weight of the frame I mention in my above post, the Centurion Pro Tour (21" frame) with Tange Champion #2, is 4 lbs., 13 ounces. The Pro Tour is fully chromed beneath the paint, though, so that would add a few ounces. For comparison, my '83 Schwinn le tour luxe (23") frame-only weight is 5 lbs., 8 oz. The '83 le tour luxe is generic, plain gauge 4130. No real significant difference in weight between the frames, what difference there is would be mostly attributed to frame size-
    Also, the Comp TA (again, largest model they made, 63cm ctt) weighs in at 4 lb. 12 oz.
    I'm going to weigh the Centurion Ironman Expert later today and will post its weight here as well.

    As a side-note, the 4130-cromoly Le Tour Luxe is still about 1.5 lighter for frame+fork than the 1020-steel Le Tours of the same size.
    Last edited by TallRider; 11-21-08 at 09:32 AM.

  7. #7
    me have long head tube TallRider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    Gosh, Tange... that brings back memories... I used to ride a lot of Nishikis, another brand of WSI like Centurion. As I recall, all the Tange #1,2,3,4 are the exactly the same 4130 chromoly alloy. The designations refer to the tubing configuration I think....
    Tange #1 is 0.8/0.5/0.8mm double-butted
    Tange #2 is 0.9/0.6/0.9mm
    Tange #3 is 1.0/0.7/1.0mm
    Tange #4 is 0.9/0.7/0.9mm
    Although all the seat-tubes were the same I think, not sure what the specs are on that. I've got a Tange catalog somewhere in my time-capsule in the attic. In reality, there's not much of a difference between the tubing really. Weight differences are like 0.25 lbs for identical frames made with those different tubesets.
    I've also heard that there wasn't much weight-difference between the various Tange tubesets.
    I'm guessing the specs that you posted are for Tange Champion #X tubing. Because Tange #1 was heavier and thicker-gauge than Tange #2 used in the later-80's Centurions. Would like to hear if you're able to (get time and) find the info in the Tange catalog.

  8. #8
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by timcupery
    As a side-note, the 4130-cromoly Le Tour Luxe is still about 1.5 lighter for frame+fork than the 1020-steel Le Tours of the same size.
    Yep, it's when you get into chromo vs. high-ten that you see a significant difference. You also get a much more responsive ride quality with even basic 4130 than with any high-ten frame, because of the thinner-walled tubes....................I believe the 1.5 lb. weight difference between the 1020 frame/fork Le Tours vs. 4130 frame/fork Le Tours can be fully attributed to the frames because the forks were high-ten on the 4130-framed le tours, too. FWIW, the fork on my Centurion Pro Tour is Tange Champion #2 like the rest of the frame. That 4 lb., 12 ounce frame weight on your 63cm Comp TA, with Tange Champion #2, makes me think the chrome beneath the paint on my 53 cm Pro Tour is adding more weight than I would have guessed (frame weight 4 lb., 13 ounces). Is your Comp TA chromed beneath the paint?

  9. #9
    me have long head tube TallRider's Avatar
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    First, the Comp TA ain't chromed. So that's probably why your smaller frame is heavier than mine. Plus it has braze-ons for canti brakes and maybe other touring-specific things (e.g., dropouts) that make it a bit heavier.

    On the Schwinns, when you say the 4130 frames are "much more responsive" than the 1020, is it for any reasons other than weight (cromo is lighter) and flexy-ness (b/c thinner-walled tubing)? Does that mean the 1020 frames are stiffer? Or flexier? Just trying to feel out what you mean by responsiveness.
    I've got those two huge 68cm Schwinns with 1020 tubing, which is why I'm interested in this.
    Last edited by TallRider; 11-21-08 at 09:33 AM.

  10. #10
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by timcupery
    On the Schwinns, when you say the 4130 frames are "much more responsive" than the 1020, is it for any reasons other than weight (cromo is lighter) and flexy-ness (b/c thinner-walled tubing)? Does that mean the 1020 frames are stiffer? Or flexier? Just trying to feel out what you mean by responsiveness.
    I've got those two huge 68cm Schwinns with 1020 tubing, which is why I'm interested in this.
    Yeah, we discussed the differences in ride quality between various Schwinns on C and V the other day, and it was agreed that there's more of a difference in ride quality between, say, a basic 4130 frame and a 1020 frame than there is between a basic 4130 frame and a 531 Paramount. That's not to say there isn't a difference between basic 4130 frames and higher-end stuff, and it is subjective, of course. And one fellow pointed out that his fillet brazed Super Sport of 4130 feels almost as "dead" as the 1020 frames he's ridden. But I think the Super Sport might have the dead ride quality he was talking about because of the internal reinforcement sleeves at the tubing joints. But yeah, because chromoly is so much stronger for its weight than something like 1020, the lighter weight tubeset will translate to a more springy ride quality because of the thinner walled tubes. Which is usually a good thing-

    edit: "responsive" probably wasn't the best choice of a word in my other post, what I meant was that it has a forgiving ride quality, with the subtle springiness steel is best known for (i.e, "alive" vs. "dead" ) -
    Last edited by well biked; 11-30-06 at 11:53 AM.

  11. #11
    me have long head tube TallRider's Avatar
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    Weights:
    The Comp TA frame of Tange Champion #2 weighs in at 4 lb. 12 oz.
    The Ironman Expert frame of Tange #1 weighs in at 5 lb flat.
    The Ironman frame has a 1cm longer seat tube, but the Comp TA has a 1cm longer top tube, so that should cancel out, so there's a difference of 4 oz. between the tubesets as best as I can tell.

    Also, on fork weight the order is reversed.
    The unicrown welded fork from the Ironman is 1cm longer, but it's the lighter of the two. Barely.
    The pink Ironman Expert fork, welded unicrown construction, weighs 1 lb. 12 oz.
    The red TA Comp fork, brazed and beautiful, weighs in at 1 lb. 14 oz.
    So it's a difference of 2 oz., and the brazed fork is slightly heavier despite having a 1cm shorter head tube.
    Last edited by TallRider; 11-21-08 at 09:33 AM.

  12. #12
    The Rabbi seely's Avatar
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    Hmm, I have had bikes made of Tange No. 2, Tange Infinity, Tange Chromalloy, and Tange No. 3. Of all the lightest was the Tange No. 3 frame, a Japanese Paramount (with oversized tubing and lugged construction, incidentally)... weighed about 4lbs dead even for what its worth. My Tange No. 2 and Tange Infinity frames are the same size, vintage, and manufacturer, and the Inifinity is set up as a loaded touring frame, but still only weighs maybe a half pound more than the Tange No. 2 frame, despite extra braze ons and all.
    commuter turned bike mechanic turned commuter (also a Velocity USA employee, but this is my personal account)

  13. #13
    biked well well biked's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by timcupery
    The red TA Comp fork, brazed and beautiful, weighs in at 1 lb. 14 oz.
    I agree, it's a beautiful fork. The Pro Tour has the same crown on its fork, with exposed chrome as an accent on the top surface of the crown and at the dropouts.........Interesting info about the frame and fork weights, thanks for posting that-

  14. #14
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    Slightly off topic, but I have never found any information about Tange Champion #5 tubing. That's what my early 1980's Japanese "sport touring" bike has. With all of this Tange expertise here, I figured I'd ask: Where would Champion #5 fall in the scheme of Tange tubes? Any specs?

    Badge: "Champion no.5, Chrome Molybden Steel, seamless P.G. tubes, Tange Industries, LTD"

    Sorry to hijack. Google comes up with almost nothing and I've wondered for a long time! This tubing is found on a couple of Centurion track bikes and some "sport tourers". Maybe heavy-gauge 4130 tubing for less flex on the track or while touring?

    (Nice old-school frames by the way. I approve!)

  15. #15
    me have long head tube TallRider's Avatar
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    I'm pretty sure Tange Champion tubing went in order from lightest (#1) to heavier as the numbers got larger. Centurion's tip-top road bike from 1984, the Turbo (outfitted with Suntour Superbe Pro) was built with Tange Champion #1, whereas my Comp TA from the same year was Champion #2.
    So I'm guessing Champion #5 was heavier tubing, not only for stiffness but also perhaps easier-to-produce, since well biked has a Centurion tourer that was built with Champion #2.
    Last edited by TallRider; 11-21-08 at 09:33 AM.

  16. #16
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by timcupery
    I'm pretty sure Tange Champion tubing went in order from lightest (#1) to heavier as the numbers got larger. Centurion's tip-top road bike from 1984, the Turbo (outfitted with Suntour Superbe Pro) was built with Tange Champion #1, whereas my TA Comp from the same year was Champion #2.
    So I'm guessing Champion #5 was heavier tubing, not only for stiffness but also perhaps easier-to-produce, since well biked has a Centurion tourer that was built with Champion #2.

    Thanks. That sounds about right. There no mention of "butted" in the tubing information. Maybe it's just straight-gauge chromoly. Cheaper to produce for sure if that's the case...

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