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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 02-02-04, 06:11 PM   #1
fixedgearhead
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De Bernardi evaluation

I thought I would post my opinion of the new De Bernardi frame I built up. I took it out for a test ride yesterday in 15 degree weather with a wind chill that drops it to -5. Brrr. The bike, itself, handled well and is set up with 73 gear inches and that makes it rather easy to attack the short steep hills in this part of Ohio. The one scary bit was a long decent on a completely iced over road with a local cowboy following to close behind me and the bike starting to fishtail in the icy slush. Sure does make the leather pucker in the Brooks saddle. I just rode it out and kept resistance on the rear wheel without skidding. No unpleasant suprises considering I was riding with slick tread tires(Avocet 23mm). The bike is a very stable handling machine. Not as twitchy and squirrly as the Cinelli. That may be due to the road type fork with the attendant less aggressive steering rake. Altogether a pleasant bike for the money. Not too much road shock is transmitted. My only criticism is the paint job. It is less than perfect what with areas that were not cleaned prior to painting and the attendant sloppy surface underneath the paint. I know that some Italian paint jobs are notorious for this type of problem but it is the first time I have experience it. Probably a fact of life what with the cheaper price of the frame in comparison to others I have owned. Now if I could just figure and inexpensive way to eliminate the hole in the front fork all would be perfect. I may have my torch friend braze it up and touch up the paint. We shall see.


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Old 02-02-04, 06:35 PM   #2
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sounds like a sweet ride, enjoy it!

take good care of that paint job. de bernardis are somewhat notorious for the paint chipping away kinda fast. i'd say clearcloat it at the very least.
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Old 02-02-04, 10:13 PM   #3
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I asked my frame builder about clear coating and he said that it would still chip under the clear coat and just make a bigger chip out of it. He would do it if I wanted but no guarantee. He said to wax it really well and keep it waxed and hope for the best. Then when it gets too bad just strip and repaint it with Dupont Imron or some such. I don't think I want to spend a whole lot more money this year on it so I will just see what happens and take it from there next year if necessary. It is a nice ride though.


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Old 02-02-04, 11:36 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by fixedgearhead
I asked my frame builder about clear coating and he said that it would still chip under the clear coat and just make a bigger chip out of it. He would do it if I wanted but no guarantee. He said to wax it really well and keep it waxed and hope for the best. Then when it gets too bad just strip and repaint it with Dupont Imron or some such. I don't think I want to spend a whole lot more money this year on it so I will just see what happens and take it from there next year if necessary. It is a nice ride though.
Probably a better bet would be just to powdercoat it. Cheaper than Imron with greater durability. Powdercoating is also much better for the environment too, it that matters to you.
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Old 02-03-04, 06:36 AM   #5
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Probably a better bet would be just to powdercoat it. Cheaper than Imron with greater durability. Powdercoating is also much better for the environment too, it that matters to you.
I agree that repaint would be the ultimate soultion. Powder coat would be fine with me as I only envision a single color application. I am going to just try to live with the waxing approach this year and see what happens. I look at it now as a test vehicle for bad painting proceedures. Dosen't affect the ride quality though. I guess that the old addage that "you get what you pay for" applies.

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Old 02-03-04, 10:35 AM   #6
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Did you post pics?... I'd like to see how yours looks.
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Old 02-03-04, 02:01 PM   #7
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Did you post pics?... I'd like to see how yours looks.
Pics are posted under the title "Mr. Brownpants comes through again #44721
fixedgearhead. I am seriously concidering having the frame repainted due to the less than perfect paint job and the sloppy decal placement. Paint is already chipping off due to the lack of cleanup on the frame prior to painting.
I am trying to decide on what color I would want. chocolate, butterscotch, cream, or something along those lines. I haven't made up my mind yet.
I sometimes can't stand my own perfectionism.
To be continued.

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Old 02-03-04, 02:22 PM   #8
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send the frame back to the dealer, tell him to paint it for that $$$
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Old 02-03-04, 04:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fixedgearhead
Pics are posted under the title "Mr. Brownpants comes through again #44721
fixedgearhead. I am seriously concidering having the frame repainted due to the less than perfect paint job and the sloppy decal placement. Paint is already chipping off due to the lack of cleanup on the frame prior to painting.
I am trying to decide on what color I would want. chocolate, butterscotch, cream, or something along those lines. I haven't made up my mind yet.
I sometimes can't stand my own perfectionism.
To be continued.

fixedgearhead
I got a DeBernardi, and it came with paint chips; although since then, I haven't had any fresh ones, from what I can tell. Although I have been called anal more than once, I didn't live up to my namesake [shut up, 165] and bought almost a perfect match in nailpolish... The whole trip with my bike into the cosmetics section of CVS was interesting but better told on another thread. Yojimbo's gave be a nice discount because of the paint.

I would be interested in knowing how much your paint job costs. Could you let me know?

I like your color ideas. Post your pics!
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Old 02-03-04, 07:29 PM   #10
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Although I have been called anal more than once
man, you just set yourself up. Hell, anyone who replaces the bolded and italicized word with something more creative will get .25 sent to them via good ole Parcel Post...have at it. And Skitty, be honest: the nail polish is a leftover from your "part-time work" at Great Lakes. I don't care what everyone else says about you here; you are still a good person in my book.
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Old 02-03-04, 11:03 PM   #11
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your "part-time work" at Great Lakes.
And I've learned from the best. This Papst is for you, 165!!
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Old 02-04-04, 05:58 PM   #12
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I would be interested in knowing how much your paint job costs. Could you let me know?

I like your color ideas. Post your pics![/QUOTE]

O.K. My obsessive/compulsive side took over and I delivered the frame to Jack at Franklin Frames to fix. We talked about sending it back to the vender and having them deal with it but he said they would probably just touch it up and that would not really deal with the lack of cleanup on the brazing flux before painting which was his assessment of the problem. I decided to strip and repaint it to a color more to my liking and have him braze up the holes on the fork and rear brake bridge before painting. I note that of the 11 bikes in my stable only one of mine is Factory Original and one of my wife's also. All of the others are repaints of one kind or another. I am having him paint it a light chocolate cream kind of color and add detail gold striping to all the lugs. Yum, Yum!
The seat is Brooks honey brown and Tressoplast brown cloth tape. That should match quite nicely. I will post pics when complete.
Now maybe I can stop obsessing.

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