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  1. #1
    Rustbelt Rider mkeller234's Avatar
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    Ebay Mystery frame arrived - detailed photos - any ideas?

    I found this on ebay for a price that I couldn't resist. I didn't know much about it but it looked nice enough and the fastback seat stays sealed the deal.

    Here is the backstory written by the seller from the ebay Q&A section:
    Dear sandranian, Interesting observation and i am going to post this so everyone can see it. my Husband (who ran the junior program at the time this was donated) got it from a mechanic in Chicago. The mechanic said that it was brought to Chicago by Laurent Fignon to use as a training bike and Fignon left it behind because he didn't want to bother taking it back. It had Gitane decals correct for the era as well as R 531C decals (in French), but the decals were pretty well torn up by the time it was donated and they were removed with acetone. The bike was equipped with Mavic cranks--the kind like Campy NR/SR (not the Starfish kind), Campy SR derailleurs, Simplex retrofriction shifters, and Mavic badged Modolo brakes. (also a very strange Simplex seatpost). i suppose it could have been built by someone else and dressed up like a Gitane, or have been built by a private builder and badged Gitane. All i know about the frameset is what my Husband and i have been told. It is a nice bike in any event. - ks2002ks
    The frame has some details that may help pin it down, it definitely does not look like a Gitane.

    - 27.2 seat post
    - English BB fits
    - Supposedly Reynolds tubing
    - It has a thick downtube, much more than my 531 bikes

    Sloping Luged fork crown:


    Fast back seat stays:


    Vertical dropouts "BREVETT DEP"




    "W" cutout in the bottom bracket








    Downtube shifter bosses, and brazed on tab for the front derailleur


    Pump peg
    |^^^^^^^^^^^^^^| ||
    |......GO.BROWNS........| ||'|";, ___.
    |_..._..._______===|=||_|__|..., ] -
    "(@)'(@)"""''"**|(@)(@)*****''(@)

  2. #2
    Senior Member shrinkboy's Avatar
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    Marinoni?? (BTW, that is a 'lugged' steel frame, not one that has been run down an icy slope on a small sled)

  3. #3
    Bianchi Goddess Bianchigirll's Avatar
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    Weigle? nice looking I do like that fork crown wether it is lugged or luged
    Bianchis '87 Sport SX, '90 Proto (2), '91 Boarala 'cross, '93 Project 3, '88 Trofeo, '86 Volpe, '89 Axis, '79 Mixte SOLD, '99 Mega Pro XL Ti, '97 Ti Megatube, , '90 something Vento 603,

    Others but still loved,; '80 RIGI, '80 Batavus Professional, '87 Cornelo, '86 Bertoni (sold), '09 Motobecane SS, '98 Hetchins M.O., '09 K2 Mainframe, '89 Trek 2000, '?? Jane Doe (still on the drawing board), '90ish Haro Escape

  4. #4
    Rustbelt Rider mkeller234's Avatar
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    Oops, *lugged*

    It didn't look like a Marinoni to me but I am not familiar with them.
    |^^^^^^^^^^^^^^| ||
    |......GO.BROWNS........| ||'|";, ___.
    |_..._..._______===|=||_|__|..., ] -
    "(@)'(@)"""''"**|(@)(@)*****''(@)

  5. #5
    Senior Member Chombi's Avatar
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    The paint on that bike does not look like the same shade of blue that Gitane used in the 80's. From what I see on the pics, the paintjob actually look very fresh and could already be a re-paint and it looks like they did a good job at it. Just a bit of polishing should bring out some depth and luster to that paint. The mysterious paint color just deepens the mystery on what the frame really is. I agree with BG that the letter in the BB shell looks more like a "W". It cergtainly a mid 60's to early 90's frame with the very vertical rear dropout configuration.
    That's a very beautiful frame and you made a good decision to go ahead and get it! Congratulations on the fantastic find!

    Chombi
    Last edited by Chombi; 08-07-10 at 03:10 PM.

  6. #6
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
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    What about the top tube? Is it equally oversized? The frame might be Columbus EL-OS. Regardless, the simple presence of that oversized downtube already points to a mid-1990's frame.

    That said, if the fork is original, the fork crown dates from the same era as well. Seems to add up that this is an early-to-mid 1990's frameset.

    -Kurt

  7. #7
    Rustbelt Rider mkeller234's Avatar
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    I took some measurements with my cheapie tool, so they are approximate.

    Mystery frame:

    Top tube thickness 25.7
    Downtube thickness 31.8



    1978 Raleigh Professional:

    Top tube thickness 25.6
    Downtube thickness 28.9
    |^^^^^^^^^^^^^^| ||
    |......GO.BROWNS........| ||'|";, ___.
    |_..._..._______===|=||_|__|..., ] -
    "(@)'(@)"""''"**|(@)(@)*****''(@)

  8. #8
    Randomhead
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bianchigirll View Post
    Weigle?
    Look at a Weigle if you ever get a chance, they are head and shoulders above this frame.

    I don't recognize the lugs, but otherwise all the parts on the OP frame are currently available. Fastback stays missing the seat lug is not a good design feature, watch for cracking.

  9. #9
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkeller234 View Post
    Mystery frame:
    Top tube thickness 25.7
    Downtube thickness 31.8

    1978 Raleigh Professional:

    Top tube thickness 25.6
    Downtube thickness 28.9
    Interesting. Oversized downtube, yet, a normal top tube. Sounds like a special build.

    Don Mainland did something to that extent on some of the Olympic Paramounts in the early '70s - they had Ishiwata produce an oversized top tube, and Nervex made a small run of oversized lugs to go with it.

    -Kurt

  10. #10
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    [QUOTE=Bianchigirll;11250090]Weigle? /QUOTE]

    Surely you are joking.

  11. #11
    Senior Member zonatandem's Avatar
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    Colin Laing, a native Brit, building in Mesa, AZ built a racing bike for Laurent.
    Colin was/is a well respected builder that built 'brown wrapper' frames for quite a few international racers.
    Possibly one of his . . .

  12. #12
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    I was on a group ride this evening, and one person was on his J.P. Weigle. Matt's mystery frame looks nice, but it sure 'ain't no Weigle.

    Neal

  13. #13
    Senior Member Torchy McFlux's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkeller234 View Post
    Oops, *lugged*

    It didn't look like a Marinoni to me but I am not familiar with them.
    That's a W, not an M.

  14. #14
    juneeaa memba!
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    The fork crown matches the crown on my Gios, from 1991. The rear brake bridge can be seen on a bianchi that I loaned someone and can't seem to get back. I'm not suggesting that either marque is this bike, just that the parts are sort of Italian. What bottom bracket size?

    Oh, I see that information in the original post. Nice cat, btw.

  15. #15
    Rustbelt Rider mkeller234's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torchy McFlux View Post
    That's a W, not an M.
    Yes, I know. Refer to my unedited original post where I called it a "W".
    Last edited by mkeller234; 08-08-10 at 10:08 AM.
    |^^^^^^^^^^^^^^| ||
    |......GO.BROWNS........| ||'|";, ___.
    |_..._..._______===|=||_|__|..., ] -
    "(@)'(@)"""''"**|(@)(@)*****''(@)

  16. #16
    Rustbelt Rider mkeller234's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nlerner View Post
    I was on a group ride this evening, and one person was on his J.P. Weigle. Matt's mystery frame looks nice, but it sure 'ain't no Weigle.

    Neal
    Right, I think it's nice but I never claimed it was anything ultra special. The Melton I owned looked nicer to me that this frame. The seller had a Melton on ebay at the same time, I TRIED to win that one but got this instead.
    |^^^^^^^^^^^^^^| ||
    |......GO.BROWNS........| ||'|";, ___.
    |_..._..._______===|=||_|__|..., ] -
    "(@)'(@)"""''"**|(@)(@)*****''(@)

  17. #17
    Senior Member
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    Too new for my knowledge base, but looks production, not custom.

  18. #18
    vjp
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    Woodrup?

  19. #19
    Stop reading my posts! unworthy1's Avatar
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    I can't hazard a guess as to what "M/W" builder made this, but I'm curious about what brand those vertical dropouts are: they just say "Patented" in French (I think) but don't look like anything I'm familiar with...certainly not like my (much earlier) Campag vertical DOs.
    Simplex? Huret? Gipiemme? what...

  20. #20
    Rustbelt Rider mkeller234's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unworthy1 View Post
    I can't hazard a guess as to what "M/W" builder made this, but I'm curious about what brand those vertical dropouts are: they just say "Patented" in French (I think) but don't look like anything I'm familiar with...certainly not like my (much earlier) Campag vertical DOs.
    Simplex? Huret? Gipiemme? what...
    Yeah, I was hoping someone might know about those. The way they attach to the frame looks strange to me.
    |^^^^^^^^^^^^^^| ||
    |......GO.BROWNS........| ||'|";, ___.
    |_..._..._______===|=||_|__|..., ] -
    "(@)'(@)"""''"**|(@)(@)*****''(@)

  21. #21
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkeller234 View Post
    Yeah, I was hoping someone might know about those. The way they attach to the frame looks strange to me.
    Quite possibly MTB dropouts. The builder might have chosen those for convenience of sourcing a set of vertical drops.

    -Kurt

  22. #22
    Rustbelt Rider mkeller234's Avatar
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    Maybe I should post a picture of the dropouts in the frame builder forum?
    |^^^^^^^^^^^^^^| ||
    |......GO.BROWNS........| ||'|";, ___.
    |_..._..._______===|=||_|__|..., ] -
    "(@)'(@)"""''"**|(@)(@)*****''(@)

  23. #23
    www.theheadbadge.com cudak888's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mkeller234 View Post
    Maybe I should post a picture of the dropouts in the frame builder forum?
    Can't hurt, though the last time I posted, I got the impression that the pack leader around there doesn't care much about C&V or mutt frames.

    -Kurt

  24. #24
    Senior Member Chombi's Avatar
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    It's interesting that such short slot dropouts would still have provision for adjusters. IIRC, the dropouts on my Vitus Carbone are similarly vertical, but they do not have adjusters like this one.

    Chombi

  25. #25
    Dolce far niente bigbossman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chombi View Post
    It's interesting that such short slot dropouts would still have provision for adjusters. IIRC, the dropouts on my Vitus Carbone are similarly vertical, but they do not have adjusters like this one.

    Chombi
    I had a 2000 - 2001 Pinarello with the same features - semi-vertical dropouts and adjusters.

    Last edited by bigbossman; 08-08-10 at 10:24 PM.
    "Love is not the dying moan of a distant violin, itís the triumphant twang of a bedspring."

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