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  1. #1
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    Need info on Columbus Tenax SL Tubing for my 1989 Schwinn Tempo Rebuild

    I have a 1989 Schwinn Tempo that I'm taking on as my first restoration project. Hang with me here, I'm new to this and trying to learn as much as I can about the materials, parts, processes, etc. I have noticed at the bottom of the down tube is a decal that says "Columbus, Tubi Speciali Rinforzati, Acciaio CrMo Cyclex, Tenax SL, Tre Tubi." Can anybody help me understand what I'm working with, please? Is this a steel frame? Or something else? When I search online, I find a lot of similar decals, but no exact matches, is it unique? I have stripped the bike down to the frame and am now considering taking it to a shop to get professionally blasted and painted/coated. I just want to make sure I'm not doing anything wrong. Any help/advice is appreciated! This is my first rebuild/refurbish! I'm pretty stoked, but want to do it right! This was my first road bike years ago and I would love to restore it and make it last! Thanks!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Pars's Avatar
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    Steel. You sure it needs to be repainted? Post some pics.

    Here's some more info, probably lots here with a search:
    Columbus SL vs Columbus TENAX

  3. #3
    Decrepit Member Scooper's Avatar
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    The Tenax tubing used used by Schwinn in the late eighties was the three main frame tubes only (top tube, down tube, and seat tube) hence the "Tre Tubi" on the tubing label. The seat stays and chain stays on the 1989 Tempo were generic 4130 chromium-molybdenum steel alloy and the fork blades were Tange Mangaloy (a manganese steel alloy). In 1989, the Tempo used a thinner walled seat tube than the other Tenax frame models as evidenced by the 27.2mm seatpost (the other Tenax model that year, the Prelude, had heavier straight gauge tubing for the seat tube and took a 26.6mm seatpost). I am surprised the Tenax label says Cyclex, as Columbus Tubi has stated that Tenax is 25CrMo4 alloy identical to AISI 4130. Cyclex is the alloy Columbus used for SL, SP, SLX, SPX, and TSX tubing and has a slightly higher ultimate tensile strength and yield strength than 25CrMo4. Columbus Cromor tubing uses 25CrMo4 alloy.
    - Stan

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    Super Moderator cb400bill's Avatar
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    Need info on Columbus Tenax SL Tubing for my 1989 Schwinn Tempo Rebuild

    Please post up some pics of your bike, including the Tenax decal.
    Laterally stiff yet vertically compliant.

    Viscount Aerospace Pro Trek 770 Cannondale Synapse

  5. #5
    Decrepit Member Scooper's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cb400bill View Post
    Please post up some pics of your bike, including the Tenax decal.
    Yes; that would be helpful. Since the OP noted that the label says, "Columbus, Tubi Speciali Rinforzati, Acciaio CrMo Cyclex, Tenax SL, Tre Tubi", I'm beginning to think there is a difference between the Tenax SL used in the 1989 Tempo and the Tenax used in other models. For one thing, there is the "SL" tag, and for another the Tempo takes a 27.2mm seatpost indicating a butted, relatively high strength alloy.

    Responding to the OP's questions, my understanding is that "Tubi Speciali Rinforzati" means the tubing is butted (tubing walls are thicker on one or both ends than in the middle of the tube to reinforce the highly stressed area where the frame tubes are joined), and "Acciaio CrMo Cyclex" means that the steel alloy is Columbus Cyclex chromium-molybdenum.

    This is pretty clearly different than the Tenax used in the Prelude and other Tenax models which used seamed 25CrMo4 steel alloy.

    Bill- congrats on the blue star! You'll make a great mod.
    - Stan

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by LiveToCycle View Post
    have stripped the bike down to the frame and am now considering taking it to a shop to get professionally blasted and painted/coated. I just want to make sure I'm not doing anything wrong. Any help/advice is appreciated! This is my first rebuild/refurbish! I'm pretty stoked, but want to do it right! This was my first road bike years ago and I would love to restore it and make it last! Thanks!
    Remember that it's only original once.

    I think most people here would agree that a Tempo is a pretty special bike.

    If it does really look ratty- that's one thing, but a bike that shows the years of use still looks respectable. If you want to lavish attention/money on it, find touch up paint for any nicks or chips. Wash, polish and wax it. Clean and polish components. If you want, "upgrade" parts. Unless it's really beat, or you're really looking for a change- I wouldn't repaint.
    *Recipient of the 2006 Time Magazine "Man Of The Year" Award*

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