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  1. #1
    Senior Member g-funk's Avatar
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    Mystery French Top Tier bike

    This is the "not a Raleigh Raleigh Professional" from ebay.
    This bike has an almost full campy record group, including french Campy record seat post and bottom bracket. Campy bar end shifters, and cinelli stem and bars. Brakes are Mafac. Rims are Fiamme tubulars. I know I got a deal on this bike, I just would like to know what it might be. it's in great shape except for some crack job repaint. This bike resided on the wall of a local bike shop in Sonoma CA for a long time, it was donated to the shop by an old guy who received it from a friend of a friend who was a "big time bike racer" It sat on the wall of the shop for 10-15 years. the shop closed a few years back and the bike was moved to a storage unit. The owner always thought it was a Raliegh Professional. It was mis listed on ebay and I being the local cool dude picked it up when the guy who won backed out. The brake cable hanger broke off the back. the bike is amazingly light. I'm pretty sure it's full DB 531. no serial numbers that I can find. Any Idea's?
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  2. #2
    Super Course fan redneckwes's Avatar
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    You sure someone did not have a rack mounted to those seat stays??

  3. #3
    Senior Member g-funk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by redneckwes View Post
    You sure someone did not have a rack mounted to those seat stays??
    I thought that for a while bit it is clearly where something was welded or brazed on.

  4. #4
    Stop reading my posts! unworthy1's Avatar
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    Gitane, Tour de France, or rather the Campy-equipt Pro model the Super Corsa (basically the same 531 frame)...nice bike!
    here's a link:
    http://www.gitaneusa.com/models_2.asp
    Last edited by unworthy1; 01-30-08 at 11:10 PM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by unworthy1 View Post
    Gitane, Tour de France, or rather the Campy-equipt Pro model the Super Corsa (basically the same 531 frame)...nice bike!
    here's a link:
    http://www.gitaneusa.com/models_2.asp
    are you pretty confident in your identification? the seatstays, fork, half-chrome detailing, lugs, headset and esp the rear brake bridge tangs & seatstay caps sure do look to me like an early-mid-70's Andre Bertin C35 which in the top version came similarly equipped with campy record and mafacs-the only deviation in componentry on this bike being the fiamme's and campy bar end shifters, a relatively popular end-user mod of the time. If this were an east coast bike, I'd offer that it could also be a Paris Sport, a shop that sold Bertins for many years under their own label with minor spec changes.
    Last edited by caterham; 01-31-08 at 05:31 AM.

  6. #6
    If I own it, I ride it CV-6's Avatar
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    The seat stay caps and the way the brake bridge is done are indicators of a Carre built frame, probably LeJeune. Is there anything engraved on the seat stay caps?
    Lynn Travers

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    ISO: Lejeune Champion du Monde Ultra Leger Reynolds 753, 53-55cm

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by CV-6 View Post
    The seat stay caps and the way the brake bridge is done are indicators of a Carre built frame, probably LeJeune. Is there anything engraved on the seat stay caps?
    apparently they don't exclusively indicate such- both the flat seatstay cap and the brake bridge features shown in the pics are as was done on the andre bertin c35 and c37 of the 70's. I sold bertins myself and my wife worked for the us bertin importer-fwiw, there was no engraving on the bertin's flat seatstay caps.

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    Lynn, you have read Norris too much, a number of French bikes have those types of caps.... C. Dardenne. C.N.C. to name just two. I doubt its a C.N.C.

    Nervex fork crown, with some filing...and chrome, Bertin also normally did not use an overlay cap on its bikes...sold many in the mid 70's so I do not dismiss but don't think Bertin.

    could use some more strategic images like the sides of the stay/dropout joint. side view of seat stay caps, some better views of the BB shell above and below...

  9. #9
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    Compare with my Nancia, not because of the color , but the seat stay caps, fork crown, and rear brake bridge is the same like yours. It is made of Super Vitus 971 tubing. Mine has Bocama lugs with cut-outs, that's different.
    Maybe yours has Vitus tubes too.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by repechage View Post
    Nervex fork crown, with some filing...and chrome, Bertin also normally did not use an overlay cap on its bikes...sold many in the mid 70's so I do not dismiss but don't think Bertin.

    could use some more strategic images like the sides of the stay/dropout joint. side view of seat stay caps, some better views of the BB shell above and below...
    repechage,

    durifort and vitus bertins used their more common folded and crimped stay cap treatment whilst the full reynolds models had the overlay flat cap.
    i suggested c35 specifically because it had plain lugs( as opposed to window cutouts on c37) and straight tubular brake bridge with window cutouts for the reinforcements(c37 had a double taper bridge)
    i agree that more detailed pics would be helpful to ascertain if it might possibly be of bertin origin. the upper end bertins used a *relatively* unusual scalloped stay to rear dropout termination as seen on my wife's 81 c70 below-

    Last edited by caterham; 01-31-08 at 05:46 PM. Reason: better pic

  11. #11
    If I own it, I ride it CV-6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by repechage View Post
    Lynn, you have read Norris too much, a number of French bikes have those types of caps.... C. Dardenne. C.N.C. to name just two. I doubt its a C.N.C.
    Perhaps....but Carre did not build just for LeJeune.

    Quote Originally Posted by caterham
    i agree that more detailed pics would be helpful to ascertain if it might possibly be of bertin origin. the upper end bertins used a *relatively* unusual scalloped stay to rear dropout termination as seen on my wife's 81 c70 below-
    Both of my road LeJeunes have this scalloped treatment.
    Lynn Travers

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    ISO: Lejeune Champion du Monde Ultra Leger Reynolds 753, 53-55cm

  12. #12
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    your implication would make for an unusual business model as bertin produced framesets for other companies such as kitchening in the uk and hallet & paris sport in the us. the only outsourced bertins that i am aware of were the 80's bador/vitus aluminum bikes and the entry model tandem(gitane?). the top line tandem was their own.

  13. #13
    Seņor Member USAZorro's Avatar
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    Can you verify the seatpost size, and the markings on the BB cup? That will help confirm tube type and BB threading.
    The search for inner peace continues...

  14. #14
    If I own it, I ride it CV-6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by caterham View Post
    your implication would make for an unusual business model as bertin produced framesets for other companies such as kitchening in the uk and hallet & paris sport in the us. the only outsourced bertins that i am aware of were the 80's bador/vitus aluminum bikes and the entry model tandem(gitane?). the top line tandem was their own.
    I think you are reading too much into my post. Carre built for LeJeune, Helyett, and Jacques Anquetil that I am aware of. My LeJeunes and Gitane Super Corsa all have the scalloped treatment, which just says it may not be as unusual as thought.
    Lynn Travers

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    ISO: Lejeune Champion du Monde Ultra Leger Reynolds 753, 53-55cm

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by caterham View Post
    your implication would make for an unusual business model as bertin produced framesets for other companies such as kitchening in the uk and hallet & paris sport in the us. the only outsourced bertins that i am aware of were the 80's bador/vitus aluminum bikes and the entry model tandem(gitane?). the top line tandem was their own.
    Not all Bertins are Bertins! The shop for which I worked ordered some special frames to compete with Masi in the mid 70's, they were called C-37 Artisan, they were contract built to a high standard, Milremo forged ends, Reynolds 5/10 ga. tubing investment cast BB shells but the forks were continental oval.. perhaps Super Vitus, there are only 24 out there- thats it....eventually one will turn up on ebay...someday.

    As Bertin shifted their business model to that of an importer and distributor, (master distributor to France for Shimano for quite a while) they contracted building of many frames of all levels, and did assembly.

  16. #16
    Senior Member g-funk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CV-6 View Post
    The seat stay caps and the way the brake bridge is done are indicators of a Carre built frame, probably LeJeune. Is there anything engraved on the seat stay caps?
    Lynn, does this not look like your super corsa? Last night that was the way I was leaning. 1970 Super Corsa.

    It is french threaded, it does have a seat post size that was identified in an old sutherlands manual as being from a french bike with high end DB tubing. I'll have exact numbers later

  17. #17
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    Tell us how much you paid...I'm mad since I live in your area and never find vintage bike stuff as cool as that.

  18. #18
    Stop reading my posts! unworthy1's Avatar
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    I sure am NOT the French expert that these fellows are, but I saw several features, including the rear cable brace that's broken off, that looked exactly like a Gitane I once owned, circa 1972 vintage. It had the "leaf" seat stay caps and similar lugs...but the fork crown *may* have been slightly different...wish I had taken pics of it, it's long gone. There's enough variation in Gitane details to make me stand by my original call, but not with conviction . You could send pics (include some sharper close-ups) to Mr. Andranian at gitaneusa.com and see what he thinks.

  19. #19
    If I own it, I ride it CV-6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by g-funk View Post
    Lynn, does this not look like your super corsa? Last night that was the way I was leaning. 1970 Super Corsa.

    It is french threaded, it does have a seat post size that was identified in an old sutherlands manual as being from a french bike with high end DB tubing. I'll have exact numbers later
    With the exception of the seat stay caps it does. Mine are much cruder. I have yet to see a Gitane with Carre-like seat stay cap...but I learn every day.


    Lynn Travers

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    ISO: Lejeune Champion du Monde Ultra Leger Reynolds 753, 53-55cm

  20. #20
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    The seat cap plate, brake bridge reinforcement, Nervex crown and simple lugs says LeJeune to me too, certainly not Gitane.

    But I ain't no French expert! Looks like a good bike though.

  21. #21
    Senior Member Grand Bois's Avatar
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    A couple of Gitane TdF shots:

    The fork crown are identical, but I'm not so sure about the seat stay caps. Mine does not have the rear brake cable stop, but many of them do and it would leave marks like the ones in the picture if it broke off. It wouldn't have to be a Super Corsa to have Campy dropouts. Some TdF's had them. The bolt-on stop on the chainstay definitely looks Gitane, but the non-Bocama lugs don't. I don't know what it is, but it's got to be French and it's definitely not a Peugeot.




  22. #22
    Senior Member g-funk's Avatar
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    I will take some more shots when I get a chance. it's storming like crazy here and the light sucks. Lynn, does your super corsa have a serial number? where is it? I can't find a serial number to save my life.

    I think it's this bike almost exactly. except for the cinelli stuff and the fiamme rims but with Gitane it seems like you get what they got regardless of what the catalog says. My rear D is marked 1970

    http://www.gitaneusa.com/images/catalog/1970_pg6.jpg

    http://www.gitaneusa.com/images/catalog/1970_pg11.jpg

  23. #23
    Senior Member g-funk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SoreFeet View Post
    Tell us how much you paid...I'm mad since I live in your area and never find vintage bike stuff as cool as that.
    I paid 750.00, where are the pictures of the Condor you wanted me to buy signt unseen?

  24. #24
    Senior Member g-funk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirtdrop View Post
    A couple of Gitane TdF shots:

    The fork crown are identical, but I'm not so sure about the seat stay caps. Mine does not have the rear brake cable stop, but many of them do and it would leave marks like the ones in the picture if it broke off. It wouldn't have to be a Super Corsa to have Campy dropouts. Some TdF's had them. The bolt-on stop on the chainstay definitely looks Gitane, but the non-Bocama lugs don't. I don't know what it is, but it's got to be French and it's definitely not a Peugeot.
    from the info I've read the only Tour de France(tour de france) gitanes that came with campy dropouts were rebadged super corsa's. True TDF's had simplex dropouts to go along with the rest of that flimsy french stuff.

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    Quote Originally Posted by caterham View Post
    repechage,

    durifort and vitus bertins used their more common folded and crimped stay cap treatment whilst the full reynolds models had the overlay flat cap.
    i suggested c35 specifically because it had plain lugs( as opposed to window cutouts on c37) and straight tubular brake bridge with window cutouts for the reinforcements(c37 had a double taper bridge)
    i agree that more detailed pics would be helpful to ascertain if it might possibly be of bertin origin. the upper end bertins used a *relatively* unusual scalloped stay to rear dropout termination as seen on my wife's 81 c70 below-
    My 1972 C37, my first bike after a string of Sting-Rays when I was young had Nervex lugs, half chrome forks and stays, no chrome on the crown (although I have seen an earlier frame with a chrome crown) and the stay ends had formed steel plug halves on either side of the dropout that tapered to the dropout with a bevel after about a 2mm flush with the stay section. Seat stay caps were brazed on and filed flush with the tube section, showing no overlap edge. Sold long ago, only image of it shows me at the starting line of the Santa Yenez road race, and not much detail.

    By 1975 the majority of the bikes that arrived were detailed differently. simpler, no chrome, Prugnaut lugs.

    The fork on this yellow bike looks Gitane, I agree, but the stay caps are a bit different than the majority I have seen.

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