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  1. #1
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    Colnago Master 1980's - seeking info, comments on build up, etc

    Friends:

    Just purchased this Colnago Master frameset. Bike mechanic sand-blasted and powder coated with new orange paint. Seems to be in great shape. Building it up with the Campy 10 speed drivetrain from my Cinelli Supercorsa (the top tube cracked!).

    1. I believe this is a 1980's model, can any enthusiasts confirm?
    2. Bikeshop ownner tells me this will be a stiff ride - have a hard time believing that. Looking for a nice, classic steel smooth ride, this will not be used for racing- any comments?
    2. Plan on using a Cinelli quill stem and Cinelli Giro D'Italia handlebars, Mavic Elite wheels with Vittoria 320 tpi tires, Brooks swallow or Fizik Kurve saddle- any further comments on additional parts for build up to optimize this project?
    photo (1).jpgphoto (2).jpgphoto (4).jpgphoto (5).jpg
    Thanks so much!

  2. #2
    Senior Member mapleleafs-13's Avatar
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    Last edited by mapleleafs-13; 07-23-12 at 10:47 PM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Drillium Dude's Avatar
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    Well, first of all, it's the right color

    It may well be a little stiff, but that's a relative term, anyway. The Gilco-designed tubeset was designed for stiffness, though, and you'll probably notice it being stiffer than most steel you've ridden. It's a race bike, after all.

    Late 80s or early 90s. Definitely a keeper - and you can find the correct decals on Ebay from Greg Softley (gts753).

    Should build up into a beauty - congrats!

    EDIT: I see you're in Seattle - care to share which bike shop gave you the ride-quality opinion?

    DD
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    "You can't buy happiness, but you can buy a bike and that's pretty close"

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drillium Dude View Post
    Well, first of all, it's the right color

    It may well be a little stiff, but that's a relative term, anyway. The Gilco-designed tubeset was designed for stiffness, though, and you'll probably notice it being stiffer than most steel you've ridden. It's a race bike, after all.

    Late 80s or early 90s. Definitely a keeper - and you can find the correct decals on Ebay from Greg Softley (gts753).

    Should build up into a beauty - congrats!

    EDIT: I see you're in Seattle - care to share which bike shop gave you the ride-quality opinion?

    DD
    +1

    Had a 1999 Master Extra Light with Gilco tubeset.

    Loved it and put thousands of miles on her in three years.

    Was a daily rider for me for the three years of ownership and I thought it was comfortable for a variety of uses from short blasts around town to longer road trips.

    Did two 150 mile rides from St. Paul to Duluth and I really enjoyed the ride qualities.

    Pretty decent on rough two lane country roads as well.

    @ op Enjoy your project and keep the pics coming!

  5. #5
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    thanks so much fellas! Great info. Can't tell you how excited I am to finish this -driving my wife crazy.

    Glad to hear the bikeshop guy was off on his "stiff ride" assessment.
    I purchased a set of black Colnago Master decals from VeloCals but wish I had consulted with you all before doing so. I'm sure these will be fine however.

    One more question - is this the Master Extra Light and what is the tubeset - Gilco, Columbus, etc?

  6. #6
    Senior Member jet sanchEz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HankStamper View Post

    1. I believe this is a 1980's model, can any enthusiasts confirm?
    2. Bikeshop ownner tells me this will be a stiff ride - have a hard time believing that. Looking for a nice, classic steel smooth ride, this will not be used for racing- any comments?
    Looks like something from the '80s, I believe that by the '90s, all three tubes of the main triangle would have had the crimped tubing. Yours might be a Master Piu since only once chainstay is chromed. You can confirm with Colnago at colnago@info.com if you have a serial number----the serial number is probably on the drive side rear drop out or on the braze-on for the front derailleur.

    Quote Originally Posted by mapleleafs-13 View Post
    Most people from bike shops are idiots anyways so i wouldn't listen to them. A stiff ride is carbon, steel is definitely not a stiff ride. There's a bajillion bike shops in toronto, and i can only recommend 2.
    A stiff ride is always relative but I have had quite a few Colnago Masters go through my hands and they have all been excellent rides. I certainly don't think that everyone who works in a bike shop is an idiot, this is one of the stiffest steel frames that Colnago makes and I would agree with that. Obviously, how you build it and which wheels you choose will determine the quality of the ride. And, for what it is worth, I prefer the ride of a Master as opposed to a C40 but, again, that is relative.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Lewis_Moon's Avatar
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    I had a late '80s 'Nago with the fluted down tube and straight forks. Very comfortable bike.

    However, I firmly believe you will come to despise this frame and it will haunt your nightmares. I would be happy to ease your mind by allowing you to send it to me for disposal.
    A new hip and a 2005 Lemond Poprad...This will not end well.

  8. #8
    Senior Member jet sanchEz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HankStamper View Post
    thanks so much fellas! Great info. Can't tell you how excited I am to finish this -driving my wife crazy.

    Glad to hear the bikeshop guy was off on his "stiff ride" assessment.
    I purchased a set of black Colnago Master decals from VeloCals but wish I had consulted with you all before doing so. I'm sure these will be fine however.

    One more question - is this the Master Extra Light and what is the tubeset - Gilco, Columbus, etc?
    It isn't a Master Extra Light as all three main tubes would be made of the crimped Gilco tubing and there would be a lot more chrome. Your fork is curved slightly, Master Extra Lights and Master Lights and Master Olympics came with a straight blade Prescia fork.

    Columbus makes the Gilco tubing.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by jet sanchEz View Post
    It isn't a Master Extra Light as all three main tubes would be made of the crimped Gilco tubing and there would be a lot more chrome. Your fork is curved slightly, Master Extra Lights and Master Lights and Master Olympics came with a straight blade Prescia fork.

    Columbus makes the Gilco tubing.
    A pic of my 1999 Master Extra Light if that helps.


  10. #10
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    Once again, fantastic info, thanks so much all of you. Lewis, the frameset is packages and ready -just need your address.

    As for a nice ride, any thoughts on my wheels, tires, handlebars, saddle choices? I realize much of it is subjective to the individual rider but looking for any additional wisdom.

    Thank you!

  11. #11
    Senior Member jet sanchEz's Avatar
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    More Colnagos have won with Dura Ace than anything else.

  12. #12
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    May be a Master Pił, years 1988-89. Before this year, the Master had rear brake cable external (and lugs a little different); after, the fork (Precisa) of Master Pił has straight blade. Then came Master Olympic and Master Light.
    Fine Bike, anyway.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by jet sanchEz View Post
    More Colnagos have won with Dura Ace than anything else.
    My MXL was a mix of DA 7700 and Ultegra.

    Went like a bat out of Hades and was bulletproof.

    I raced Supers with DA 7400 like most of the guys locally back in the day.

    Ran great, performed quite well.

    I love the 8 speed Campy goodies on my Colnago Elegant, but I can easily see why racers choose DA over Campy.

    DA is certainly good enough for my personal favorite Sven Nys!

    A pic of Nys's cross bike, I think a C-50.


  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidelavalle View Post
    May be a Master Pił, years 1988-89. Before this year, the Master had rear brake cable external (and lugs a little different); after, the fork (Precisa) of Master Pił has straight blade. Then came Master Olympic and Master Light.
    Fine Bike, anyway.
    That's what I thought as well.

    I think Gary Fountain may have one so we may do a little comparison.

  15. #15
    Senior Member jet sanchEz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gomango View Post
    My MXL was a mix of DA 7700 and Ultegra.

    Went like a bat out of Hades and was bulletproof.

    I raced Supers with DA 7400 like most of the guys locally back in the day.

    Ran great, performed quite well.

    I love the 8 speed Campy goodies on my Colnago Elegant, but I can easily see why racers choose DA over Campy.

    DA is certainly good enough for my personal favorite Sven Nys!

    A pic of Nys's cross bike, I think a C-50.

    Yup. Rabobank and Mapei are the big squads that win (a lot) and race on Colnagos with Dura Ace. Your '99 is a Casino team colour and they raced with Dura Ace as well.

  16. #16
    Senior Member jet sanchEz's Avatar
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    I just came across this...unique way to build up a Master. Different is good.

    http://www.pinkbike.com/buysell/1136529/




  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by jet sanchEz View Post
    I just came across this...unique way to build up a Master. Different is good.

    http://www.pinkbike.com/buysell/1136529/



    Omg.

  18. #18
    Senior Member Lewis_Moon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jet sanchEz View Post
    I just came across this...unique way to build up a Master. Different is good.

    http://www.pinkbike.com/buysell/1136529/



    I weep.
    A new hip and a 2005 Lemond Poprad...This will not end well.

  19. #19
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    Bugs me even more as it's a really pretty frameset underneath all of that silliness.

    I shudder to think of the scrapes and rust under the pump and rack.

    Plus it's about my size.

  20. #20
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    Great stuff. I found the serial # L650 stamped on the Campy drop out any way to determine model and year? Thanks

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by HankStamper View Post
    Great stuff. I found the serial # L650 stamped on the Campy drop out any way to determine model and year? Thanks
    I am looking at this on a small screen.

    Are all of the three tubes crimped?

    If only the top, how many grooves?

  22. #22
    Senior Member jet sanchEz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HankStamper View Post
    Great stuff. I found the serial # L650 stamped on the Campy drop out any way to determine model and year? Thanks
    info@colnago.com

    They got back to me in a couple of days each time I contacted them.

  23. #23
    Senior Member Drillium Dude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jet sanchEz View Post
    I just came across this...unique way to build up a Master. Different is good.

    http://www.pinkbike.com/buysell/1136529/



    Would've been even more cool if he'd used a Pletscher rack with the round basketball base

    DD
    My Flickr pics: http://www.flickr.com/photos/30331021@N08/

    "You can't buy happiness, but you can buy a bike and that's pretty close"

  24. #24
    Senior Member Gary Fountain's Avatar
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    I think it's a Master Piu as well (internal rear brake cable routing through top tube). Nice bike - wonderful ride.

    Here's mine:

    Last edited by Gary Fountain; 07-18-12 at 05:29 AM.

  25. #25
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    OK, bike is completed and have taken it for 2 wonderful rides. really happy with how this bike turned out. Waiting for a Thomson silver masterpiece seatpost that will fit my Fizik kurve saddle, but for now the Brooks swallow is working just fine.
    Thank you all for the great info and encouragement!
    Here are some pics:
    IMG_6030-001.jpgIMG_6033.jpgIMG_6038.jpgIMG_6031.jpeg.jpgIMG_6032.jpgIMG_6034.JPGIMG_6035.jpgIMG_6036.JPGphoto (1).JPGphoto (2).jpg

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