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Are Centurions Worth it?

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Are Centurions Worth it?

Old 07-10-15, 05:02 AM
  #26  
Bianchigirll 
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Originally Posted by Danbianchi881 View Post
I've seen one today at my LBS going for $50 missing wheels 55cm frame
What model Centurian? The model the OP is referring to might be worth $50-75 with wheels.
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Old 07-10-15, 06:48 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Bianchigirll View Post
What model Centurian? The model the OP is referring to might be worth $50-75 with wheels.
Correct, BG and a good question for the OP to answer. Look at the OP's words. Nothing in OP's post refers to that particular bike other than the picture. Everything he/she asks is about Centurions in general.

You are correct about the model in the picture, but the OP didn't refer to it, just posted a picture. (supporting trolldom, eh?)

I sure don't want people to think the Cavaletto is any kind of representation of Centurions in general, as the best-selling models are excellent examples of good to excellent frames with better than average components at a price point below the competition, then and now. Add in the mojo of the upper end models, and, wait for it, Barney, legend. The quality of the better frames really starts to become apparent when the wheels are tuned up and/or modern compoents are swapped in. i.e. hot rod Ironman.

I'll go out on a limb and opine that when people think of Centurions, the Ironman comes to mind, then the other models, with Elites, Lemans due to their sales volume, and Semi Pro's and Pro Tours due to their fine-ness. The lower end models may populate CL because that's what they are, lower-end models, like any other brand's lower end models. CL is full of them because no one wants them and CL is an alternative to the landfill or recycling center; human nature (greed) is to consider a heavy dead bird in the hand to be worth money when it's not.

Perhaps one reason low-end Centurions are around is because their paint quality was better than the market, and they still look presentable? They were not exactly big sellers.

Conversely, one reason many Ironman models have some rust issues in places on the frame is because of sweat. They were ridden, a lot, and hard, and should show some wear. The seat cluster, BB shell, and head tube area is where sweat collects. Constant use also means constant transportation, longer time in the garage or shed, thus more storage and transportation damage. This trait is also found in much more expensive Italian bikes of the same era, and should be.

My words are just words. For proof, follow these simple steps.

1-Buy a Comp TA, LeMans RS, Elite, Ironman, Prestige, Turbo, Semi Pro, Pro Tour, or an Equipe, in good shape.
(do not lose sleep over the price, it's a bike, and in the long run, not all that relevant)

2-Tune it up, including the wheels (true/tension), lube, adjust, fit.

3-Pick a metric or full century with plenty of people, and sign up for it.

4-Ride the bike in it. Just like any other bike. Stay visible.

Sooner or later, they will come. They will tell you about the one they had, sold, regretted.
The first "real bike," the first "racing bike," the first "triathlon bike" they/their brother/buddy/wife/grandpa had.
They will get misty-eyed, stare off into the distance, and yearn for the older, better times.
The affection will come to their voice, warm remembrance of grand and glorious efforts.
They will remember when legs were young and strong, muscles taut, minds sharp, competition alive.
They will inevitably say "I wish I still had it."
Then, you will know. You will understand.
It's not about the bike, but oh, yes, it is.
It's what they could do while on it.
Ironman.

Last edited by RobbieTunes; 07-10-15 at 07:24 AM.
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Old 07-10-15, 07:01 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by rjhammett View Post
I would stick with an Ironman. I have owned 2 Ironman bikes, an Elite RS, a LeMans and a Super LeMans. I love the Ironman and the others were ok. I sold an '87 Ironman Expert 'Miami Vice' yesterday for $350. It was in near perfect condition.
And I'd have paid it. All the live-long day.
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Old 07-10-15, 07:26 AM
  #29  
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Wait for an IRONMAN. This one came from my local Craigslist (sans the saddle, bar tape and tires you see) a couple of years back for $160. Not a scratch on it, and it's one of my favorite rides!
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Old 07-10-15, 07:46 AM
  #30  
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Originally Posted by Bianchigirll View Post
What model Centurian? The model the OP is referring to might be worth $50-75 with wheels.
the same bike this guy posting
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Old 07-10-15, 08:20 AM
  #31  
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The OT really was the question of the day around here.

I just sold an '80 Elite with decent componentry for a crazy low (fleet liquidation) price. It was an interesting bike and was my winter training mule.
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Old 07-10-15, 11:45 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post

Sooner or later, they will come. They will tell you about the one they had, sold, regretted.
The first "real bike," the first "racing bike," the first "triathlon bike" they/their brother/buddy/wife/grandpa had.
They will get misty-eyed, stare off into the distance, and yearn for the older, better times.
The affection will come to their voice, warm remembrance of grand and glorious efforts.
They will remember when legs were young and strong, muscles taut, minds sharp, competition alive.
They will inevitably say "I wish I still had it."
Then, you will know. You will understand.
It's not about the bike, but oh, yes, it is.
It's what they could do while on it.
Ironman.
"The one constant through all the years, Robbie, has been Centurion. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It's been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt, and erased again. But Centurions have marked the time. This road, this bike, is a part of our past, Robbie. It reminds us of all that once was good, and that could be again. Oh... people will come, Robbie. People will most definitely come..."

(with apologies to Mr. Kinsella...)
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Old 07-10-15, 11:51 AM
  #33  
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The Centurion is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful bicycle I've ever known in my life.







(with apologies to Richard Condon, author of The Manchurian Candidate)

Last edited by davester; 07-10-15 at 11:58 AM.
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Old 07-10-15, 04:16 PM
  #34  
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But remember they were all brainwashed and everyone hated him.

Originally Posted by davester View Post
The Centurion is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful bicycle I've ever known in my life.







(with apologies to Richard Condon, author of The Manchurian Candidate)
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Old 07-10-15, 05:16 PM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Lascauxcaveman View Post
But I'll go along with the consensus on this particular Centurion, it's low-end and not worth getting unless you're particularly desperate/impatient.
Oh yeah, totally agree, that particular bike is WAY over priced. Now, if it was an Ironman........... I picked up a nice 1990 Diamond Back Centurion Interval frame awhile back and will be building it up with a 105 STI group. Some don't consider it a "true" Centurion since they slapped the Diamond Back logos on it that year but it's still a nice frame.



Originally Posted by zazenzach View Post
@Murray Missle
@
Lascauxcaveman

YAY! I'm 6'1 and ride 25" inch frames as well.

I'm always puzzled by the numerous posts on this forum saying they're my height and they ride something around 56-58cm. Or when I post my bike and someone comments that I must be huge.
Ah yes, those vicious barbs of envy from the vertically challenged LOL.
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Old 07-10-15, 08:39 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by ElliotSF View Post
There should be a sticky thread that contains all of RobbieTunes' odes to Centurions. Seriously.
I completely agree!

Oooh, pretty. That would make a great pair with my blue one.
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Old 07-10-15, 09:18 PM
  #37  
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That orange SemiPro with all chrome underneath, I find one in good shape, it's mine! I still remember seeing one at an LBS in Fresno in the mid-70's. I can picture it like it was yesterday-it was on the upper rack, no other bikes around it. The sunlight angled in just then and hit it. It was like Jules opening the briefcase in Pulp Fiction-glowed like a religious relic in a bad movie. I wanted it so bad, but alas, could not afford it.

Later in life I discovered the ProTour, the one with centerpull posts brazed on. I searched and found one, but not in my size. I decided to buy it anyways and hold it hostage until someone with the right size for me, wrong for them came along. Can anyone help a bike brother out?
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Old 07-10-15, 09:40 PM
  #38  
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edit: I asked what size you were, then thought to read the info under the pro-tour pic you supplied. that is in beautiful shape and a beautiful bike! I'll keep my eyes open for a 60cm one. (unfortunately for you.. 60cm would also work for me..).

local to me is way too small but looks in great nick if not original:

https://sfbay.craigslist.org/nby/bid/5115214633.html


a little further away 61cm

https://slo.craigslist.org/bik/5110342194.html

here is a 60cm in dallas:

https://dallas.craigslist.org/ndf/bik/5073713557.html




Last edited by jetboy; 07-10-15 at 09:51 PM.
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Old 07-11-15, 05:20 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
They will get misty-eyed, stare off into the distance, and yearn for the older, better times.
The affection will come to their voice, warm remembrance of grand and glorious efforts.
They will remember when legs were young and strong, muscles taut, minds sharp, competition alive.
They will inevitably say "I wish I still had it."
Then, you will know. You will understand.
It's not about the bike, but oh, yes, it is.
It's what they could do while on it.
Ironman.
Beautiful words. Thank you.
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Old 07-11-15, 06:40 AM
  #40  
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Those who say it is not about the bike have the habit of leaving their Huffy out in the rain.
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Old 07-11-15, 08:55 AM
  #41  
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I've got an 87 Ironman Master in amazing condition that I've been riding more often than my custom modern steel bike. They're a blast to ride, have good (for me, at least) crit geometry, and the paint schemes are classic.
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Old 07-11-15, 10:11 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by jetboy View Post
edit: I asked what size you were, then thought to read the info under the pro-tour pic you supplied. that is in beautiful shape and a beautiful bike! I'll keep my eyes open for a 60cm one. (unfortunately for you.. 60cm would also work for me..).
Thanks for looking out for me. Those 3 CL ProTours look mighty fine indeed. Specifically, I'm looking for the model with the brazed on centerpull bits, not cantilever. Those are much more rare, it would seem.
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Old 07-11-15, 10:22 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by mrmw View Post
Beautiful words. Thank you.
mrmw is from Atlanta, but carried an Ironman all the way to Chapel Hill, NC to sell me. Then, a bit later, he enacted an engineering feat on another Centurion, both in the rear wheel spacing, I believe, and the cantilever brakes. He shared it here on BF. A true man in the Centurion mold. Correct me if I'm wrong, Steve.....

Last edited by RobbieTunes; 07-11-15 at 10:26 AM.
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Old 07-11-15, 10:23 AM
  #44  
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much more rare i think: never really seen one but yours.
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Old 07-11-15, 10:41 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by jetboy View Post
a little further away 61cm

CENTURION PRO TOUR 15, 24 inch / 61 cm

If I could find a facilitator for this I don't think I could stop myself. My first tours were on a Pro Tour sold because it was too small. This one is juuust right.
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Old 07-12-15, 05:13 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
mrmw is from Atlanta, but carried an Ironman all the way to Chapel Hill, NC to sell me. Then, a bit later, he enacted an engineering feat on another Centurion, both in the rear wheel spacing, I believe, and the cantilever brakes. He shared it here on BF. A true man in the Centurion mold. Correct me if I'm wrong, Steve.....
The hard part was not hauling the bike 380 miles from Atlanta to Durham, we were going anyway to visit friends. The hard part was schlepping 20 miles up to ex-urban Atlanta where trophy houses were planted in the fields to meet the 30-ish stockbroker who, under pressure from who knows what direction, was shedding the Dinah Shore red and white see the USA in your Chevrolet Ironman--clearly a piece of his youth.

Or, what he said so poetically.
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