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Recreational Cyclocross and Gravelbiking This has to be the most physically intense sport ever invented. It's high speed bicycle racing on a short off road course or riding the off pavement rides on gravel like :The Dirty Kanza". We also have a dedicated Racing forum for the Cyclocross Hard Core Racers.

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Old 11-01-13, 11:55 PM   #1
Niloc
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Axle to crown length

So I'm stripping and rebuilding my Bianchi Reparto Corse cyclocross bike and discovered my fork is toast http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...his-fork-toast Problem is it's pretty hard to find a replacement 1 inch threaded cyclocross fork. I've found some that could work except they have axle to crown lengths in around 400mm. Even if I open my search to 1 inch threadless that's all I find. My Bianchi fork is 380mm. That's seems like a pretty big difference to me in terms of how much it would jack up the front end. The frame was obviously designed for the 380mm fork. It's a level top-tube road bike type frame. What do you all think?
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Old 11-02-13, 07:33 AM   #2
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The 400 length will provide a more stable bike with a very small reduction in steering quickness. After a few hours on the bike the change will not be noticed. I considered a modern fork on my Vintage Simoncini. I could not find a crowned 1" threaded model anywhere. This one looked the best of the 1" threadless models I saw: http://store.somafab.com/soclcucyfo.html It has a 389mm axle to crown length
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Old 11-02-13, 08:02 AM   #3
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Oop.....fork I posted doesn't come in 1" ..
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Old 11-02-13, 08:59 AM   #4
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Thanks for the tip Barrett, so did you buy that Soma? What did you think of it? That would be only 9mm taller than my Bianchi fork so not as bad all the 400mm options. Of course it's more money than I was expecting to spend and I'd also have to get a threadless headset...
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Old 11-02-13, 01:55 PM   #5
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You can hire a replacement made, ship yours and say "Make it just like this one"

have the rake/offset to consider too..
does not have to be an Asian Import just to be Cheaper,does it?

Bikeschool.com has a long list of resources , frame builders and component manufacturers. & etc.
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Old 11-02-13, 02:20 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Niloc View Post
Thanks for the tip Barrett, so did you buy that Soma? What did you think of it? That would be only 9mm taller than my Bianchi fork so not as bad all the 400mm options. Of course it's more money than I was expecting to spend and I'd also have to get a threadless headset...
I was able to use the original fork that belongs with the frame, but I am still considering the Soma fork. My vintage fork has very narrow 55mm cantilever post centers. Fitting brakes was a challenge and getting super-reliable stopping power has been elusive.

The Soma fork has regular 80mm post centers. The fork also has a mount on the fork for a cable stop/hanger. Solid braking performance would be a no-brainer with that fork. I would lose the vintage quill stem and would be installing a modern threadless stem...



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Old 11-03-13, 07:40 PM   #7
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Hey Barrett, sweet ride, akin to my lugged steel 1996 Bianchi Reparto Corse. My problem fork looks similar to yours, lugged crown and fairly lightweight and slender. I could not get decent braking with cantilevers and I tried every which way of adjusting them. I had horrible fork juddering on hard braking, especially on pavement. Now that I think of it, I wonder if all that juddering could have contributed to the cracking in my fork crown? And now that I've resolved the juddering problem I don't have to worry as much about it? Fork judder is an inherent problem with Cantis, due to the bow and arrow effect of the brake cable between the cable hanger and the yoke. I'm thinking it's worse with slender steel forks like ours cuz they're more flexy. Anyways I finally solved the problem by going to a mini-v brake. That stopped the juddering completely and improved stopping power dramatically. I eventually got a Paul Mini-moto which is a pretty sweet little brake, though pricey. I realize it's not "classic" or traditional, but if you want to keep using that original fork you might consider it, worked wonders for me.
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Old 11-03-13, 08:02 PM   #8
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Have a new fork made. Zero UNO should be source able, I built a frame from it a few years ago.
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Old 11-03-13, 09:17 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Niloc View Post
Hey Barrett, sweet ride, akin to my lugged steel 1996 Bianchi Reparto Corse. My problem fork looks similar to yours, lugged crown and fairly lightweight and slender. I could not get decent braking with cantilevers and I tried every which way of adjusting them. I had horrible fork juddering on hard braking, especially on pavement. Now that I think of it, I wonder if all that juddering could have contributed to the cracking in my fork crown? And now that I've resolved the juddering problem I don't have to worry as much about it? Fork judder is an inherent problem with Cantis, due to the bow and arrow effect of the brake cable between the cable hanger and the yoke. I'm thinking it's worse with slender steel forks like ours cuz they're more flexy. Anyways I finally solved the problem by going to a mini-v brake. That stopped the juddering completely and improved stopping power dramatically. I eventually got a Paul Mini-moto which is a pretty sweet little brake, though pricey. I realize it's not "classic" or traditional, but if you want to keep using that original fork you might consider it, worked wonders for me.
I'm going to consider the Mini-moto. It's the best idea I've heard that would allow me to keep the Simoncini fork and solve the braking power and shudder issues.

What's worked for me on my my more modern bikes is the use of a fork mounted hanger and with good quality pads. My cycling isn't all that demanding. I do expect the front brake to lift the rear tire, however. I can also hit 45 mph a few times a year. I want the brakes to make a safe stop from any speed.



I can get the performance I want from the Soma fork if I use a fork mounted hanger.

However, the Paul Mini Moto's look interesting. Do I put on brakes that didn't exist in 1997 or do I replace an original Italian made fork that looks great, with a new & nice enough modern fork?
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Last edited by Barrettscv; 11-04-13 at 07:19 AM.
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Old 11-04-13, 11:40 AM   #10
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However, the Paul Mini Moto's look interesting. Do I put on brakes that didn't exist in 1997 or do I replace an original Italian made fork that looks great, with a new & nice enough modern fork?
Yeah the Mini Moto is nice. It is also easier to adjust than your typical canti. V-brakes, including this one, don't give quite the rim clearance that cantis will, it hasn't been a problem for me, but if you were racing in muddy conditions maybe it would be an issue?

I suppose you've considered drilling your Simoncini fork to accept a cable hanger? It looks like a thin crown even thinner than mine so maybe you are worried about weakening it.
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Old 11-04-13, 12:03 PM   #11
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Yeah the Mini Moto is nice. It is also easier to adjust than your typical canti. V-brakes, including this one, don't give quite the rim clearance that cantis will, it hasn't been a problem for me, but if you were racing in muddy conditions maybe it would be an issue?

I suppose you've considered drilling your Simoncini fork to accept a cable hanger? It looks like a thin crown even thinner than mine so maybe you are worried about weakening it.
Thanks for the tip on the Mini Moto. What was the mounting stud distance on your Bianchi fork? Mine is a ridiculous 55mm CTC. It should be more like 80mm.

I'm going to use this bike as a road & gravel bike, it won't see much mud. So that's all good with the Mini V's.

Yes, I don't trust myself, or anyone else, to drill the crown. It might start to crack.
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Old 11-04-13, 12:36 PM   #12
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Hey Barretscv, If you are looking at the mini-motos I have a set of the TRP CX-9's (mini-v's) sitting in my parts bin. PM if interested.
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Old 11-04-13, 01:45 PM   #13
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The mounting stud distance on my Bianchi fork is 70mm CTC. So I guess that's a little tighter than standard? 55mm does seem silly tight. Do you want to buy a fork - bargain price ;-)

Yep Mini V really improved my braking. It will help you on the road for sure. As long as your rim is reasonably true you won't have a problem. You're going to ride that on gravel and get the paint all chipped up? Just kidding you should see my Bianchi frame. BTW I kept the canti on the rear because there are no juddering problems back there and I didn't care about having matching brakes and one Paul Mini Moto is expensive enough as it is. I didn't notice a big difference in feel between the two brakes either.
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Old 11-04-13, 05:15 PM   #14
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Well, I'm one step closer to fitting a Soma fork to my bike. I just got an email from the nice folks at Paul's explaining that the 55mm center distance will not work with Mini-Moto's.

I think keeping the original fork on this bike isn't going to work.
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Old 11-04-13, 06:05 PM   #15
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Well, I'm one step closer to fitting a Soma fork to my bike. I just got an email from the nice folks at Paul's explaining that the 55mm center distance will not work with Mini-Moto's.

I think keeping the original fork on this bike isn't going to work.
Seems like Simoncini must have just taken a road bike and added canti posts to make cyclocross without thinking too hard about it. And I thought my Bianchi fork was a little lightweight, yours looks very minimalist. Out of curiosity, what is the mounting stud distance on the rear? What is your axle-to-crown distance? I'm betting it's even lower than mine which is about ~380mm.
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Old 11-04-13, 06:08 PM   #16
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That probably was the case. Most cross bike raced on 28mm tires back then. Most likely built for Mafac canti's.
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Old 11-04-13, 06:20 PM   #17
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Seems like Simoncini must have just taken a road bike and added canti posts to make cyclocross without thinking too hard about it. And I thought my Bianchi fork was a little lightweight, yours looks very minimalist. Out of curiosity, what is the mounting stud distance on the rear? What is your axle-to-crown distance? I'm betting it's even lower than mine which is about ~380mm.
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Most cross bike raced on 28mm tires back then. Most likely built for Mafac canti's.
Well, the fork is very odd but it is about 390mm. The front triangle has very steep angles, more like a road race bike than any bike I own including my road bikes! The chainstays are about 420mm, shorter than most CX bikes. The riding is stiff in a good way and the Challenge tires provide a responsive-but-damp ride that is fun. Speaking of tires, a 30mm wide tire will just fit between the round chainstays, a 700x33 should fit under the fork easily. It won't be the best 100 mile century ride bike I own, it's more of a metric century gravel grinder.

The modern fork will greatly improve the braking and should help the stability of the bike, too. The new fork is a setback aesthetically, mostly because it will require a thread-less stem. But the bike is not going to be a wall-hanger.

Nolic, what solution are you leaning towards?
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Old 11-04-13, 09:57 PM   #18
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Well I'm curious about the Soma Classic curve as well, but between buying that and changing to threadless it'll be about over $250. I've been looking around on eBay. But I think I'm going to slap some clearcoat on my Bianchi fork and keep running it for now. I actually want to see if I can get it together to do a race this weekend. If you go to my other thread http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...his-fork-toast you can follow the whole saga.
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