Hello, I have owned the frame below for many years, but have not ridden a road bike for around 15.
This is an Allin frameset from Allin Cycles in Croydon.
Its a lugless close clearance design with eliptical rear stays. The design includes the cables for the rear brake and deraileur running through the frame.
I would place the frame at around 1982 I think it was built just before the last frames Stan built with the aerodynamic tubing- it is marked 2515 under the bottom bracket.
Tubing is columbus - Frame and Forks.
Finished in its original paint which is a little chipped, the full chrome forks and rear stays have some light rust pitting.
Vertical Dropouts are Shimano XTR, it has a Nadex bottom bracket and the gear lever is Campagnolo C-Record Friction centrally mounted.
The rest of the bike has components from about 1992 when I acquired the frame more Japanese than Italian, so probably not worth much.
So my question is, is this a valuable frame? It's certainly unusual. Would it be worth more as it is, in its original paint and transfers, or would it be better to restore it (as per original spec). In each of these cases, any ideas on its market value?
I agree, it's rare and unusual and so you should keep the original finish at all costs...as for the value, that's harder to say: even rare unusual frames from this ('80s) era aren't in as high demand as older frames: there aren't a lot of Japanese collectors in bidding wars on eBay for this, yet.
Location is important in determining value, but the worldwide market such as eBay would be the best place to sell...you could do something like launch an auction with a very high reserve to see what kind of interest there is, yet not risk it actually selling unless your reserve is met.
I have a feeling that Hillary Stone might know what the going rate would be, if you can get him by PM, maybe he'll spare you the auction effort.
BTW, on another note: be very careful if you remove that Nadex BB, they are well known for seizing up in the steel BB shell, so you have to use a lot of ju-ju to get them out unscathed...unless you're very lucky or had the foresight to use a load of grease on the threads to install it.