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Show Us Your Vintage Cannondale!

Old 01-06-22, 05:19 PM
  #1251  
RustyJames
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
I got this 1990 ST400 about a month ago. It had all the original components, including the tires. Lots of chips in the paint, but otherwise it was in very good shape. The original components were painfully heavy, so I decided to go with an updated 3x10 build.



My touch-up paint isn't a perfect match, but it looks really good from a distance or in poor lighting. I also touched up the decal with white nail polish, but didn't put enough effort into that. I could probably improve both the paint and the decal with some patience, but I'm not sure I'll bother. In the light of day, it looks like this:



I acquired a set of Shimano CX-70 cantilever brakes for the build, but then at the last minute I decided I wanted to try mini V's so I bought a set of Tektro RX6's. I really like the feel of V-brakes -- much better than cantilevers. Mini-V's are supposed to give you that feel while working with road levers. How well they do that depends on your tolerance for tight rim clearance. I've only had this out for a few hundred yards up and down the street, but the power of the brakes is outstanding. The rim clearance on the other hand.... Let's just say the wheel will need to stay perfectly true. My wheelbuilder (me) comes along on all my rides, but I don't think this is suitable for touring. We'll see.



The drivetrain is Shimano 10-speed with an FSA Gossamer crankset that I recently polished.





The build, as shown above, including bell, mirror, and bottle cages, comes in at 22.25 pounds. I didn't think to weigh it in original condition, but it was heavy. The Cannondale catalog claimed it weighed 25.5 pounds (and that was without accessories).

Finally, a couple of acknowledgements are in order. The saddle was given to me by @RustyJames and the Crank Brothers pedals (which look like they might never have been used before) were given to me by @Dfrost. Many thanks to both of you.
Looks great @Andy_K! Glad to help.
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Old 01-06-22, 05:35 PM
  #1252  
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Originally Posted by Roger M View Post
If I understand you correctly, these brakes work well with traditional road levers? That would be good to know.
I can't give an unconditional endorsement of these brakes with road levers. The issue is cable pull. I completely geeked out on brake cable pull a few years ago, so I had some idea what it was going to take when I started this. As you probably know, traditional V-brakes require a lot more cable pull than road brakes. Mini V brakes were intended to address that problem, but they don't entirely do it. One issue is that the amount of brake cable pull varies from one brake lever to the next. You can also get mini V brakes in different lengths. These are 90 mm, which is about the limit of what can be considered "mini" -- traditional V brakes are generally in the 105-115 mm range. You can get minis as short as 80 mm. The longer brakes have more mechanical advantage, but they don't move the pads as far for a given amount of cable pull, so the longer the brake the more cable you need your levers to be able to pull.

I first tried these brakes on this bike with Tektro RL340 levers, which Tektro kind of implies should be compatible on their website (https://www.tektro.com/products.php?p=49), but I couldn't get the pads close enough to the rim without rubbing and not have the lever bottom out. The SRAM levers pull a bit more cable, and I was able to get them to work, but there's still very little gap between the pads and the rim -- maybe a millimeter. I had to true the wheels a bit to get them to spin without rubbing anywhere. In theory, newer Shimano STIs pull more cable and they're likely to work a bit better with this brake.

On the other hand, the power (per hand force input) is just ridiculous. On my test ride up and down the block, when I gave the lever a quick and firm squeeze my body weight lurched forward enough to scare me for a second. I know a lot of people would hate that, but that's what I wanted. I hate single pivot side pulls because you have to squeeze the lever so freaking hard to get maximum braking power. I prefer to squeeze gently and get results. I'm sure you remember driving cars without power brakes, right? That's the kind of difference I'm talking about between these brakes and cantilevers (no matter how perfectly you have the cantilevers set up). Both will stop you just fine, but the feel is a lot different. I'm sure when power brakes first started becoming ubiquitous in cars there were a lot of retro grouches who hated how responsive they were. Now, if you put most people in a car without power brakes they'd think something was broken.

So...if you pick the right brake lever, and you don't mind having the pads really, really close to the rim, and you like very responsive brakes, these brakes work really well.


Originally Posted by Roger M View Post
How do you like those Sram brake levers? I have a set, and the seem to feel right in my large(ish) hands. However, I can't bring myself to use them on an old steel frame. They do look better on an aluminum frame.
Like I said above, they were a choice of necessity. I've had them for years and haven't used them since I gave up singlespeed cyclocross racing. I don't like black levers, but I think they look OK on this bike. They feel OK when I'm riding.
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Old 01-07-22, 12:49 AM
  #1253  
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Any reason those front brake pads are on the wrong side?
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Old 01-07-22, 01:05 AM
  #1254  
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Originally Posted by JacobLee View Post
Any reason those front brake pads are on the wrong side?
Oops. They aren't actually. That one is just upside down.

This one s why I always post pictures of my brakes before taking a bike out for its first ride.
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Old 01-07-22, 01:19 AM
  #1255  
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Originally Posted by Andy_K View Post
They're nominally 700x28, but being Conti GP 4000s, they measure closer to 30mm wide. I'm looking at options for 700x32 or 700x35 -- maybe Renť Herse Bon Jon Pass.
Looks fantastic, man. [EDIT] Looks like you replied about the brake pads!
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Old 01-07-22, 07:47 AM
  #1256  
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I've got fork-envy! My '97 has a unicrown fork- perfectly functional, but man, so inelegant and fugly! The earlier Tange forks were so much classier.
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Old 01-07-22, 08:16 AM
  #1257  
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Got my Newest Bike Ever last weekend. It even has them DISCO brakes!

2007 Rush 5.
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Old 01-07-22, 09:47 AM
  #1258  
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Originally Posted by kanawa View Post
Love the paint job! I picked up my only Cannondale this year because of the paint. Wanted to have another patriotic bike. I have no use for another one but I'd still love one of the stars and stripes bikes.

My CAAD8 Optima, not really vintage but....


How it looked when I picked it up after a cleaning.

How it's configured now, turned into a silly weight weenie build sorta. 15 lbs 14 ozs. Fast ride but harsh on the back end.
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Old 01-07-22, 10:23 AM
  #1259  
Velo Mule
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1998 Cannondale M400 Mountain

I got this as a frame and crank, then picked up a M700 parts bike and added a few more items that were missing. And laced on new rims. The seat has since been replaced . Cannondale calls the paint BBQ black. It is not my favorite color amongst the colors that they offer, however, having a vintage mountain bike that rides this nice makes the paint more appealing.

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Old 01-08-22, 05:15 AM
  #1260  
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Are old cdales safe do they ride well

i ve owned several going back to 1986....mt bike road bike loved them but that was 30 yrs ago.....
First , do they ride well still. is fit feel function good for today...also is the old school aluminium solid and safe.
i have been looking at several on craigslist but not sure if its a good buy.
thanks.
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Old 01-08-22, 06:27 AM
  #1261  
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Originally Posted by Chuckk View Post
I hear THEY HAMMER YOU TO DEATH and then they ASSPLODE!
Please get it straight: "assplode" is the carbon myth; "hammer you to death" is the aluminum myth.
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Old 01-08-22, 06:58 AM
  #1262  
Trakhak
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Originally Posted by thehammerdog View Post
i ve owned several going back to 1986....mt bike road bike loved them but that was 30 yrs ago.....
First , do they ride well still. is fit feel function good for today...also is the old school aluminium solid and safe.
i have been looking at several on craigslist but not sure if its a good buy.
thanks.
One of my lasting regrets is that I didn't buy a Cannondale road bike in the '80s or early '90s, when I was working at a bike shop; t could have bought one at a substantial discount. But at that time I was still laboring under the delusion that I should own only one road bike at a time and should be satisfied with my Bianchi Specialissima Supercorsa. (I later came to my senses.)

Look up the Cult of CAAD thread to read endless testimonials to the continuing excellence of Cannondales. For myself, I've owned a dozen or more high-end steel road bikes, but aluminum bikes are all I ride now. Why? I can never feel any difference in "comfort," whatever that means for a diamond-frame bike, between aluminum and steel bikes (comparing like for like, for a given wheelbase), but I can instantly feel the difference in handling.

Modern aluminum bikes (including every Cannondale bike ever built) just feel better to me than steel bikes for the simple ;reason that the torsional rigidity of the large-diameter tubing ensures that the rear wheel tracks the front wheel perfectly. I accept that not everyone is as sensitive to bike handling characteristics as I am, but the difference is enough that I'm still thrilled with the feel of my aluminum bikes from the moment I begin riding. And I enjoy knowing that those aluminum frames are likely to last at least as long as any comparable steel frame.

Speaking of which, time to again trot out the famous German Tour magazine article from 1994, archived on the sheldonbrown.com website.

TLDR (although I highly recommend reading the whole report): all of the steel and titanium frames failed during the testing. The only frames that didn't fail were a Cannondale (a CAAD3), a European aluminum frame (a Principia), and Trek's carbon OCLV frame.

12 High-End Frames in the EFBe Fatigue Test
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Old 01-08-22, 07:28 AM
  #1263  
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Originally Posted by Trakhak View Post
Please get it straight: "assplode" is the carbon myth; "hammer you to death" is the aluminum myth.
Well to be honest, there is quite a bit of difference in comfort between the 4 aluminun road bikes I've ridden. The Vitus Argal was fast and comfortable enough but the handling going down hill at speed was vague and a bit scary. The Schwinn 684 was comfortable and fast on chipseal roads but seemed a bit dull in handling. The Klein Quantum II is just a dream in all aspects of the riding equation. Now the Cannondale, yeah I have to honestly say the rear end is harsh and right now I can't see using it on any long rides. Sorry is fun to hammer on though which is what it was built for.

That fatigue test link was an awesome read and something I don't remember seeing before.
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Old 01-08-22, 09:05 AM
  #1264  
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Originally Posted by jamesdak View Post
Well to be honest, there is quite a bit of difference in comfort between the 4 aluminun road bikes I've ridden. The Vitus Argal was fast and comfortable enough but the handling going down hill at speed was vague and a bit scary. The Schwinn 684 was comfortable and fast on chipseal roads but seemed a bit dull in handling. The Klein Quantum II is just a dream in all aspects of the riding equation. Now the Cannondale, yeah I have to honestly say the rear end is harsh and right now I can't see using it on any long rides. Sorry is fun to hammer on though which is what it was built for.

That fatigue test link was an awesome read and something I don't remember seeing before.
Thanks for providing real-world differentiations from direct comparisons. I think of your contributions to Bikeforums as being up there among the most valuable posted on the site because of the sheer range of bikes you own and your evenhanded evaluations of them.

My experience differs from yours only in that I've found that the harshness of a given bike's ride seems to directlly correlate with the wheelbase. All my bikes with very short wheelbases, steel or aluminum, feel more or less the same with respect to harshness.

The perceived harshness of the shorter-wheelbase bikes seems to be the effect of the quicker, almost instantaneous impact of road surface undulations on the front and rear tires and has very little to do with the choice of frame material. My steel track bikes with genuine sprint geometry (and ultra-short wheelbase, around 958 mm, for example) are just as harsh (or, more accurately, hair-raising) to ride on the road as my aluminum bikes with the same wheelbase.
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Old 01-08-22, 09:49 AM
  #1265  
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You make some excellent points above.
SR short wheelbase bikes, like the CAAD frames, generally have the reputation for being the choice for shorter, faster rides where fatigue is less of an issue. So not the best choice for a Century. Iíve owned and refurbished many of them, and while lovable, I would not take one on a ride longer than 50 miles or so, even with 25mm high quality tires and an upscale wheelset.
ST bikes, on the other hand, with the longer wheelbase, are a pleasure to ride any distance you choose. They accept any upgrade that includes a 130mm OLD rear hub and depending on the rim used and actual size, will take 700c tires up to at least a 28, and in some cases a 32 (my 88 is happiest with Conti 28ís). Without racks they are a spirited accomplice to all sorts of adventure, including gravel roads. With a complement of racks theyíll serve well as a touring mount.

And yes, still safe to use and ride.
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Old 01-08-22, 03:18 PM
  #1266  
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What do I have here?

Serial#
JD 51-0302 1G483
312610 2RCX3E56
Fork:
H5190 25
8XR3AL56

What I think it is.
1998, April
XR800 Viper Red

Any corrections or information greatly appreciated.

Thanks




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Old 01-14-22, 08:38 PM
  #1267  
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This thread is such a beauty!
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Old 01-15-22, 08:27 AM
  #1268  
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Originally Posted by Wilbur76 View Post
Picked up this SM800 last year and just didnít know what to do with it since the bike is a bit small (24Ē wheels). Went way off script and just relaunched it as a 1x5 bmx cruiser. Now itís an upright, comfortable and sweet little ride.






This is an amazing build. PM me if youíre ever looking to sell it!
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Old 01-15-22, 08:36 AM
  #1269  
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M300

My vintage Cídale. Nothing special, but my favorite bike. 1994 M300. A great singletrack bike.
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Old 01-15-22, 01:53 PM
  #1270  
jim dandy
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Vintage Cannondale

Pretty sure Iíve posted this before. But, canít find the post. So, will apologize in advance Ö
JD, Dallas

1988 Cannondale Black Lightning
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