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  1. #1
    Senior Member greybeard87's Avatar
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    Nishiki Ultimate?

    This appeaed on local C/L this morning and sounds interesting:


    the ultimate - $1200

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Reply to: see below
    Date: 2007-02-20, 8:48AM EST


    this is a NISHIKI ULTIMATE w/campe parts / only 4 in country $1200 seen @ lucky cycle on camden in charlotte 800 898 1641
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]Peace and Bike Grease

  2. #2
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    this is a NISHIKI ULTIMATE w/campe parts / only 4 in country
    I bid on a Nishiki made of Columbus SL tubing and made in Italy, I think full Super Record (maybe by Cinelli, similar to the Centurion/ Cinelli Equipe) on ebay a few months ago. The model name Ultimate does not ring a bell, however. As I recall the bike sold for ~$400 including shipping, not to me, however.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Mhendricks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vpiuva
    I bid on a Nishiki made of Columbus SL tubing and made in Italy, I think full Super Record (maybe by Cinelli, similar to the Centurion/ Cinelli Equipe) on ebay a few months ago. The model name Ultimate does not ring a bell, however. As I recall the bike sold for ~$400 including shipping, not to me, however.


    I bet it's a Nishiki Cervino she's advertising. I owned one not long ago that had all Campy SR. It was made of Columbus SL and was a beatiful metallic blue. Wish I never sold it.
    They call me "Mr. Mixte"

  4. #4
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    I bet it's a Nishiki Cervino
    That's it - Cervino

  5. #5
    My bikes became Vintage OLDYELLR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vpiuva
    I bid on a Nishiki made of Columbus SL tubing and made in Italy
    That could have been a Maxima frame, made for Nishiki by Colnago.

    I have an Ultimate I bought new in the early 1980s.





    These bikes were never in the Nishiki brochures.
    1981 Nishiki Ultimate
    1977 Nishiki Landau
    1967 Jeunet Captivante track bike
    1951 Claud Butler New Allrounder under construction
    "index shifters = frets on a fiddle"

  6. #6
    * vpiuva's Avatar
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    I have an Ultimate I bought new in the early 1980s.
    Never seen or heard of an Ultimate before. Sharp Bike. Learn something every day on CV. Did they really have only four in the US as the seller claims?

  7. #7
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    There were three Nishiki models that came with Camapgnolo NR/SR components - the Cervino, Maxima and Ultimate. The Cervino and Maxima were made in Italy using Columbus SL/SP tubing. Constructors reportedly producing the Italian models included Colnago, Olmo and Viner. The Olmo and Viner associations have some credibility as original owners have reported them coming in boxes marked Olmo and an employee who worked for the distributor recalls them coming form Viner. The Ultimate was made in Japan by Kawamura.

    I have yet to see any catalogs referencing these models and some owners have stated they were un-cataloged. While the numbers were probably limited, 4 would seem questionable. However, I wouldn't be surprised if the owner is only relating what the salesman told him. Salesmen would often embelish on things like exclusivity, in order to make a sale.

  8. #8
    My bikes became Vintage OLDYELLR's Avatar
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    It's hard to say how many Ultimates were built or sold in the U.S. or Canada. If you search the web, you'll only find a few references. I bought mine at the LBS in Woodstock, ON. The only other one I ever saw was in the window of Mike Barry's shop (Bicyclesport) in Toronto. At the time, the top Nishiki in the catalog was the Superbe, with a frame very similar to the Ultimate, but with Japanese dropouts and braze-ons and Japanese components.
    1981 Nishiki Ultimate
    1977 Nishiki Landau
    1967 Jeunet Captivante track bike
    1951 Claud Butler New Allrounder under construction
    "index shifters = frets on a fiddle"

  9. #9
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    Great Bike Indeed

    I bought one of these in the early 1980's from a bike shop in London ON, called, I think "The Bicycle Shop".

    It was a real revelation to ride it. I had ordered something else. After a month, the shop owner told me "You don't want that!, why don't you buy the Ultimate." I said.. "It's more than I can afford!". He suggested I just ride the bike. That (and $300 off the price) was enough. Turns out he hadn't ordered the other bike, as he didn't feel it was appropriate.

    Mine was slightly different than the one in the picture, because my levers were on a clamp, not brazed on. It was the same colour.

    Great, great bike. It took a while to realize that the 25" frame was a bit too big for me, otherwise, I'm sure I'd be riding it to this day.

    [I sold to to some guy who was about 5' 7" (Go figger)]

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
    There were three Nishiki models that came with Camapgnolo NR/SR components - the Cervino, Maxima and Ultimate. The Cervino and Maxima were made in Italy using Columbus SL/SP tubing. Constructors reportedly producing the Italian models included Colnago, Olmo and Viner. The Olmo and Viner associations have some credibility as original owners have reported them coming in boxes marked Olmo and an employee who worked for the distributor recalls them coming form Viner. The Ultimate was made in Japan by Kawamura.

    I have yet to see any catalogs referencing these models and some owners have stated they were un-cataloged. While the numbers were probably limited, 4 would seem questionable. However, I wouldn't be surprised if the owner is only relating what the salesman told him. Salesmen would often embelish on things like exclusivity, in order to make a sale.
    I had a Nishiki Professional that came with Campy. I traded it off to a taller guy who could ride it.

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...i-Professional

    If you scroll down to the end of that thread you can see the catalog page I found for it.

    Jared

    PS-- I just noticed I commented on T-Mar's three year old post. I guess that was not really needed.
    Last edited by sjpitts; 02-22-10 at 03:05 PM.

  11. #11
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    Resurrecting my own old Nishiki

    Quote Originally Posted by OLDYELLR View Post
    That could have been a Maxima frame, made for Nishiki by Colnago.

    I have an Ultimate I bought new in the early 1980s.





    These bikes were never in the Nishiki brochures.
    Hi OLDYELLR - I was wondering if you still had this bike. I bought one in 1980 at a Bikeology warehouse sale in LA. I sold it around 1993 after having it painted and changing the components to Superbe. I just bought it back and would like to restore it to the original condition. Your pics are the only ones I've seen that show the bike as I remember it. I think I can get my graphic artist son to design and print some decals if he has something to work with. Would you be able to shoot some detailed photos of the paint scheme and decals? Please let me know. Thanks
    Last edited by gsgrable; 10-14-12 at 11:15 PM. Reason: spelling

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by sjpitts View Post
    I had a Nishiki Professional that came with Campy. I traded it off to a taller guy who could ride it.

    http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...i-Professional

    If you scroll down to the end of that thread you can see the catalog page I found for it.

    Jared

    PS-- I just noticed I commented on T-Mar's three year old post. I guess that was not really needed.
    It certainly was justified, as it added to the knowledge base, even if it is somewhat confusing. The Ultimate and Professional do indeed appaear to be identical, with the exception of the model name. Normally, I'd subscribe to the theory of them being for different markets, however both have US market serial numbers for 1981 and the Canadian market serialization format was in place at least as far back as 1977. The serial number of the documented Ultimate is only 179 frames earlier than your Professional. Typically, this would imply that your Professional was a 1982 model manufactured in late 1981, yet you have a 1981 catalog illustrating the model. This implies the model started out as Ultimate and changed names to the Professional within the model year. However, this is still confusing as most catalogs are prevented very late in the previous calendar year and typically document the original model name. Normally, they wouldn't make a new layout and printing for a change like this.

    Based on this evidence there are several scenarios;

    1. The model name changed from Ultimate to Professional within the 1981 model year and a new catalog run was made.

    2. The model name changed from Professional to Ultimate then back to Professional within a model year.

    3. The Professional is the US market model and the Ultimate is the equivalent Canadian market model but Kawamura placed the worng decal on a US market frame.

    4. As per 3, but a Canadian market model was stamped with a US market serial number.

    It's all quite confusing and we'll probably never get to the real reason why there wee two identical bicycles issued under different model names for the same year.

    As for the quantities, given the era and level of the bicycle, the annual production was probaby around or under 1000 units.

  13. #13
    Senior Member cooperryder's Avatar
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    Just got my Nishiki Professional frame & fork built up with parts I had except stem which I
    am back and forth on if I like it or not or even if this is an appropriate application for it.
    It had no cap to top the thing off with. It did allow be to get the bars as tall as my aging back requires.

    From KA 145 _ _ _ serial number & other info on this site I am guessing a 1981 model.

    It's a 63 c-t seat tube.

    I like it and am pleased I can fit 700c x 30 tires on it.

    Professional decals are about gone but aside from paint scratches & chips it appears to
    be in good shape.

    Here are a few pics of it built up.














  14. #14
    Senior Member Giacomo 1's Avatar
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    Look's like a good, long distance bike with that somewhat relaxed geometry. Maybe it's just the pictures, but I don't think I've ever seen a Colnago with that type of angular head tube/seat tube. TT looks a little short to.

    I'll tell you though, for $1200, I think I would opt for the real thing - a Colnago! I cannot see spending that much for a Nishiki, even with the Italian lineage. Wonder if it ever sold?
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  15. #15
    Senior Member cyclotoine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Giacomo 1 View Post
    Look's like a good, long distance bike with that somewhat relaxed geometry. Maybe it's just the pictures, but I don't think I've ever seen a Colnago with that type of angular head tube/seat tube. TT looks a little short to.

    I'll tell you though, for $1200, I think I would opt for the real thing - a Colnago! I cannot see spending that much for a Nishiki, even with the Italian lineage. Wonder if it ever sold?
    There were a few model names thrown around in this thread. If you read closely though you will note the ultimate and professional are both Kawamura made. Cervino and Maxima are the Italian bikes and probably not colnago made... though is it possible the rumor started because olmo and/or viner were making frames for colnago by then?
    1 Super Record bike, 1 Nuovo Record bike, 1 Pista, 1 Road, 1 Cyclocross/Allrounder, 1 MTB, 1 Touring, 1 Fixed gear

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