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Vintage as Primary Bike

Old 11-13-15, 03:27 AM
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Firochromis
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Vintage as Primary Bike

Hi all,

I'm about to enter the C&V world and I have slight concerns. Due to some reasons (I have a ring on a significant finger) I'll have one road bike. It is a Fondriest Megachrome (1996) with a modern Campy Veloce grupset and Campy Proton wheelset on it.

So all of us likes steel bikes but if you have one bike to choose would it be a steel? Most of my internet search gives "Look, I've finished that vintage bike" threads, meaning the emphasis is on the word "vintage"; not on "bike". I'll buy this vintage bike with the emphasis on the BIKE. My bike will collect mud and scratchs unlike some of the bikes who collect dust in a garage.

Any thoughts?
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Old 11-13-15, 05:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Firochromis View Post
So all of us likes steel bikes but if you have one bike to choose would it be a steel?
Yes.

I have a half dozen bikes, most are '84 or older. If I had to whittle down to one bike, it would definitely be one of the oldies. In fact, my normal commuter is a Trek 520, which I ride year 'round. I would probably keep one of the others and find something else to do exercise wise during the winter. (You don't indicate where you live, but here in the Great Lakes region, they salt the roads.)
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Old 11-13-15, 05:34 AM
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just because my vintage steel bikes are pristine doesn't mean i don't ride them hard and far.
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Old 11-13-15, 05:45 AM
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yes. I don't have any modern bikes and I ride everyday, rain or shine, exercise and commute. And the bike you described - if it's in good nick - will outlast you.
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Old 11-13-15, 05:48 AM
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What smon and esch and Ital said. Unless your only bike is a pristine high-end museum piece you should just ride it and clean it as necessary. They are "just bikes" after all and meant to be ridden.

One reason you see "...finished with that vintage bike" a lot here is the build process is fun and rewarding in itself. That doesn't even count those who flip bikes for profit (I don't). A few of the bikes in my collection are worthy of special care, most are not. I have commuted on all of them. My current commuter, the Bianchi, could easily be my "only" bike. Or the Raleigh. Or the Centurion. Or the Gazelle or the Motobecane, or even the Peugeot.
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Old 11-13-15, 06:11 AM
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You got that bike, cool. Let's see pictures!

A vintage bike is perfectly fine as the only bike. Remember that in 1996 people on those bikes were riding just as fast, long, and hard as they do today.
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Old 11-13-15, 06:19 AM
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My primary bike is a 1979 Trek 910. I bought it nearly 5 years ago.
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Old 11-13-15, 06:20 AM
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What I have come to believe, strongly, is that for riding purpose, assuming ride quality includes the fit, feel and user friendliness of the bike in question, is simple...

Vintage does not offer the ride quality, as defined, but does offer great opportunities to enjoy a very different aspect of bicycling. Modern bicycles, fitted with more advanced frame technologies and coupled with the user friendly components of today, definitely offers a more ride friendly bicycle.

I really like my vintage bicycles, but they spend most of their time as wall art...



So, what do I ride? Easy, a mixture of the two - vintage bicycles fitted with modern components...

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Old 11-13-15, 06:36 AM
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My newest bike is from 1987, my primary bike is from 1985.

I'm never "finished" with building any bike- because I'm always dicking with *something* on it.
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Old 11-13-15, 06:43 AM
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I don't use my "vintage" bikes as primary rides.

However, the great majority of my bikes are steel.
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Old 11-13-15, 06:52 AM
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My take on the question is like randyjawa's. I rode high-end steel bikes exclusively from 1964 to 1986, but my primary and favorite bike, which I bought in 1986, is aluminum. I like looking at my steel bikes, but they've spent little or no time on the road in the last 30 years.
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Old 11-13-15, 06:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Firochromis View Post
Hi all,

I'll have one road bike.

Any thoughts?
Sucks to be you?

As to material choice for bikes, it doesn't matter one whit. Buy what you please. Treat it as you please. Leave your sanctimony in your garage.
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Old 11-13-15, 07:04 AM
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I have both modern, well relatively modern, and vintage...I ride them all...do I have a primary ride? Yes, it usually turns out to be the last bike I rode! I tend to ride the same one for a while, then switch...and I also agree...even the museum pieces are "just bikes" and are "meant to be ridden"...so ride them! I also agree a bit with Randy...but I think you can get exceptional ride quality (maybe not ease of riding) out of many older steel bikes...
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Old 11-13-15, 07:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Firochromis View Post
Hi all,

I'm about to enter the C&V world and I have slight concerns. Due to some reasons (I have a ring on a significant finger) I'll have one road bike. It is a Fondriest Megachrome (1996) with a modern Campy Veloce grupset and Campy Proton wheelset on it.

So all of us likes steel bikes but if you have one bike to choose would it be a steel? Most of my internet search gives "Look, I've finished that vintage bike" threads, meaning the emphasis is on the word "vintage"; not on "bike". I'll buy this vintage bike with the emphasis on the BIKE. My bike will collect mud and scratchs unlike some of the bikes who collect dust in a garage.

Any thoughts?
I had a 2011 all carbon road bike. I sold it earlier this year since I preferred riding my early 80s steel bike.
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Old 11-13-15, 07:13 AM
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Most of my bikes are old, because I don't want to buy new bikes. Steel bikes last a lifetime. They're not like cars. Old cars are not practical for most people. Not so for bikes.
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Old 11-13-15, 07:40 AM
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Originally Posted by Firochromis View Post
My bike will collect mud and scratchs unlike some of the bikes who collect dust in a garage.
Are "scratchs" a new Collectable like Hummel figurines for grim purposeful bicycle riding?



No one cares how, where or why I operate my old bicycles, what components are hung on them much less if they need a good dusting or a complete overhaul.
For you: Same, same.

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Old 11-13-15, 07:55 AM
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Originally Posted by iab View Post
Sucks to be you?
well played!
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Old 11-13-15, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by randyjawa View Post
So, what do I ride? Easy, a mixture of the two - vintage bicycles fitted with modern components...
+1. You get the ride quality, timelessness, and personal satisfaction of riding a gorgeous frame with all the modern conveniences of what the latest technology has to offer in the moving parts. You'll sometimes encounter minor issues when initially marrying the vintage with modern, but I have yet to run into an issue that a widget (adapter, clamp, etc.) or some ingenuity can't resolve. And if nothing else, you'll be fonder of the bike when finished because you will have something truly unique. Trite as that may sound.
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Old 11-13-15, 08:09 AM
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I don't own a modern bike. My three main riders are 1987 and 1986 models. One has a modern drivetrain, one has an upgraded era correct drivetrain, and the third has its original drivetrain.

I did build a frame at frame school last year. So technically, its a 2014 model. But I built it old school, it even has a quill stem (used a fork off a 1994 bike). And the components I used to build it up are all at least 20 years old.

I have a lot of bikes, more than most on this forum. But most of them are passing through projects, which will eventually go on to a new home.
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Old 11-13-15, 08:18 AM
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I ride old bikes more than I used to because I've spent too much time on this forum drinking the C&V kool-aid . . . .

Kidding; but it can be addictive just like any other hobby. And this forum did get me to think about repurposing old bikes.

My favorite commuters by a long shot are two fairly high end vintage mountain bikes I picked up cheap on CL.
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Old 11-13-15, 09:28 AM
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I did build a frame at frame school last year. So technically, its a 2014 model. But I built it old school, it even has a quill stem (used a fork off a 1994 bike). And the components I used to build it up are all at least 20 years old.
Did you ever post pictures of the bicycle? If so, where and, if not, why not here, just for me:-) I would like to see the result.
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Old 11-13-15, 09:47 AM
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Originally Posted by randyjawa View Post
Did you ever post pictures of the bicycle? If so, where and, if not, why not here, just for me:-) I would like to see the result.
YEs, I posted it last year after the class. At many frame schools, you only build the main triangle. So I took a used fork with me, added mid fork rack braze ons, and powder coated everything to match. I had no interest in just getting a main triangle.

I need to eventually come up with a decal design.

Its on my Facebook page as well, but its back in 2014. One thing I have never learned how to do is organize my Facebook page.
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Old 11-13-15, 09:48 AM
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When vintage is all you have, vintage is what you ride. Any bike of mine is likely to outlast me.
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Old 11-13-15, 10:58 AM
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Both of my regular rides are vintage (1981 and 1986). I bought a newer aluminum brifter-equipped Trek to commute with a couple of years ago, but just didn't like the ride that much, and although the brake-lever-mounted index shifting was slightly more convenient than my regular down tube shifters, it wasn't that big a deal. So, I sold the Trek and went back to commuting on my older bikes.

Much is made of the "new technology" on newer bikes, but in reality it just doesn't make that much of a difference to your riding enjoyment unless you're racing where seconds count
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Old 11-13-15, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Firochromis View Post

Due to some reasons (I have a ring on a significant finger) I'll have one road bike.
WTH does this have to do with Vintage bikes? Who wears the bike shorts in your family? You PW'd?

You need to complete bike collection before marriage.... it's one of the unwritten rules.
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