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I'm finally fixing my bike - a retro tale

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I'm finally fixing my bike - a retro tale

Old 12-19-15, 11:30 PM
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I'm finally fixing my bike - a retro tale

I am bringing in one of my framesets for repair to my LBS -- Its a very traditional DeBErnardi, - not high end, but traditional , nice lugs, square geometry , etc. --- Its Aelle tubing, so not a big dollar rig either, but when i was in college , twas all i could afford , I was a Cat 4 with Italian tastes --- i had to get the OK from my then wife (now deceased - ovarian cancer at age of 25 ) to purchase

They were quoting me options on repairs and i let them know that within reason, cost is not a deterrent on this repair --- this was really the first frameset where i saw my young wife roll her eyes and say - "I hope you know what your doing" and sigh -- because that , plus the build kit (A modest Campagnolo ensemble - Veloce level approximately) actually did put a dent in my personal finances for a bit (not the home finances, but i was brown bagging it and working overtime to pay for my racing bug while trying to get through school )

After conferring on repair options, i saw some Open Corsa's behind the cash register and asked "Can you get these in 28c with a tan sidewall?" -- My mechanic in all seriousness said -- "Cool, a lot of you retro guys' are rollin' with the tan sidewalls still "
I said -- "Retro? -- that frameset back there was bought new in early '96 , so definitely not retro"
--- the guys had to set me straight and said -- no dude, thats retro now -- 20 years ----

-- I had a good laugh about this in the truck --- i rarely bring this crew any road stuff-- i usually need mechanical assistance on MTB projects , --- but i was amused that a bike with ErgoPower originally was now retro

- So i guess im an official "retro-geek" now . The original LBS i bought the frameset from used to rib me all the time as they were a Cannondale dealer -- I was the "steel is real" guy even though i was not much older than a kid myself -- i loved it -- I thought to myself, you had to be either fast enough to not care, or have a devil-may-care attitude (like a guy entering a Jaguar E-Type in an autocross) to ride steel in sanctioned competition in the mid 90's/early 2000's --- I fit in the latter category

I miss my sweet girl, and on fleeting occasions, she will still show up in a dream -- we spent a scant 3 years together when i was a young man just home from the service and in college - first real love ----- I have spent more time than that with the bike that she rolled her eyes at and let me buy

--- But without this back story, the bike is nothing but an Aelle tubeset -- and with the battle scars from literally several hundred criteriums and a lot of training miles -- most would say its next to worthless now - maybe 200 bucks

But this is what retro is all about --- to me the back story makes it priceless --- I have many bikes . I have had sponsor provided bikes, bikes for special events, lots of mountain bikes that come and go as technology changes, etc etc. -- but out of all of them, this one feels mostly like mine --

---- Last night was another one of those nights when my late wife showed up in a dream again so i got a bit emotional today i guess (wasn't about the bike - just a pop-in of sorts) --but I remember vivdly her rolling her eyes and saying "OK" - (I asked her 2 days after i put it on order, fittingly enough) --- not only that, i remember the bike shop owner taking a personal interest in it and building it himself -- he coated the inner frame tubes with hot linseed oil before building it up, so i would never had a corrosion problem , facing the BB shell, and headtube , etc -- just good stuff all the way around ---

Thanks for reading those who could hang in there

This is an old pic from my attic which i have shown before ---- but now the wheels are in motion and i will be updating this thread as we go along -- build thread style --

My main man , the frame man asked me if i wanted to touch up the paint or go for a re-spray -- its a nice pearl white -- given my sentimental feelings about this bike, i'm leaning towards a re-spray but it depends on how ugly the repairs are i guess --- again, those would be more badges of honor for a bike that has done everything ---

hard to say

She would have been 46 this coming year -- a lot of life left unlived. Still i remain. I am remarried - but i will never be 24 again and preparing to take on the world with my young bride - fresh from Desert Storm with a lot of big ideas

This will be quietly dedicated to my late wife, Dedra MCbride --- and i'll post up pics as we go along -- the tear down process starts in the AM




Last edited by DMC707; 12-19-15 at 11:44 PM.
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Old 12-19-15, 11:37 PM
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Every time I buy a bike, I wonder what the backstory on it is. Thanks for sharing yours.
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Old 12-20-15, 02:06 AM
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That is a beautiful story. You'll do honor to the bike, and to your sweet memory.
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Old 12-20-15, 07:55 AM
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The story makes the bike even more beautiful.
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Old 12-20-15, 08:07 AM
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I got a little misty. Thanks for sharing your bike's story.
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Old 12-20-15, 08:12 AM
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A memory bike, for sure. Unless you want to remember the scars and dents a lot, I'd say a repaint is fine with me, well done and decals replaced.
Let it represent the time from which you bought it, all new and potential unrealized, and never get rid of it, always good to have a memory trigger.
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Old 12-20-15, 08:17 AM
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Thank you for sharing this story. I worked in a shop and we sold a a lot of DBs. I thought they were first rate bikes and priced a little lower than the competition.

The bike in the pic looks pretty darn good; I'd be in no hurry to repaint it.
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Old 12-20-15, 08:17 AM
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Thanks for sharing.
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Old 12-20-15, 08:28 AM
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What specific repairs are you having done? I don't see a mention of it. This bike holds dear memories for you, and it's nice to see you tending to them. I look forward to seeing how it evolves. Thank you for sharing your personal story and this lovely bike. The Pearl is a fantastic color....reminds me of a twinkling star.
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Old 12-20-15, 10:24 AM
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes
A memory bike, for sure. Unless you want to remember the scars and dents a lot, I'd say a repaint is fine with me, well done and decals replaced.
Let it represent the time from which you bought it, all new and potential unrealized, and never get rid of it, always good to have a memory trigger.
It's entirely up to you, but I agree with Robbie.
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Old 12-20-15, 10:38 AM
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Wonderful story and a touching memory for you! The pearl does look fantastic as a colour for a bike. Hold on to both.

The pista behind it is hot!
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Old 12-20-15, 11:12 AM
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Originally Posted by nesteel
Every time I buy a bike, I wonder what the backstory on it is. Thanks for sharing yours.
I think this way too. I always wonder why no one else wonders along the same lines, i.e., when making a CL or garage sale purchase, why has this bike not been swooped up and rescued by someone before I came upon it. I think a lot of us here on the C&V board share a common story along the lines of "this one was headed for the landfill" for a bike or two, or a whole shed full of them. Odd, my daughter and I were having a discussion along these thoughts while hunting for Christmas presents yesterday. My hope in mankind is strengthened in the words of the original poster; the memories associated with your bike are far more valuable than the dollar amount anyone else may see in front of them. Sentimental value should always be the strongest valuation measure; the provenance should always trump any other measure of somethings value.

Last edited by uncle uncle; 12-20-15 at 12:04 PM.
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Old 12-20-15, 11:28 AM
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Only one of my bikes do I know the backstory - all others are a mystery and probably passed through many hands and have many stories.

The one i do know is the Holdsworth, which after I agreed to purchase it, the sister told me why it has been sitting for 25 years. It was her brothers bike who had died in a plane crash and he had bought it in the 80s (its a 1981/2). It then stayed with their mother until she recently passed.. and they were clearing out the estate.

its not even my own history and memories and now I take special care of that bike in memory of people I never even met.
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Old 12-20-15, 03:40 PM
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Originally Posted by inkandsilver
I got a little misty. Thanks for sharing your bike's story.
Same here. Thanks for sharing your bike's story and yours. I attended a talk by Will Marre' ("Save the World and Still Be Home for Dinner") on Thursday evening, and one of his big messages is to share our stories with family and friends. You are among friends here.
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Old 12-20-15, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by inkandsilver
I got a little misty. Thanks for sharing your bike's story.
+1 & jyl +1*
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Old 12-20-15, 07:44 PM
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And then there's this one:

In the beginning was the plan.
And then came the assumptions.
And the assumptions were without form.
And the plan was without substance.
And darkness was upon the face of the workers.
And they spoke among themselves saying,
"It is a crock of **** and it stinketh."
And the workers went unto their supervisors and said,
"It is a pale of dung and none may abide the odor thereof."
And the supervisor went unto their managers and said,
"It is a container of excrement and it is very strong, such that none may abide by it."
And the managers went unto their directors, saying,
"It is a vessel of fertilizer, and none may abide its strength."
And the directors spoke among themselves, saying to one another,
"It contains that which aids plant growth and it is very strong."
And the directors went unto the vice presidents, saying unto them,
"It promotes growth and is very powerful."
And the vice presidents went unto the president, saying unto him,
"The new plan will promote the growth and vigor of the company, with powerful effects."
And the president looked upon the plan and saw that it was good.
And the plan became policy.
This is how **** happens.
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Old 12-20-15, 11:08 PM
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Thanks guys' -- for me -- writing is therapeutic -- and i get pretty emotional around the holidays --- when i pulled my bike out and saw the dents, i almost cried --


Pics added- a lot of you guys' will look at these and say -- "much ado about nothing" everyone has rode worse i'm sure

but here goes ---

A pic after i wiped the dust off at first glance looks like a frame that has lived a rich and full life , but no abuse to speak of until you look closer --- with marks in the paint on the chainstays from rocks and the sure signs of a lowside or 2 on the seat stays -- plus there are paint issues on the top tube where a good natured teammate wrote "El Jefe" there in black sharpie pen in '97 or '98 --- I accepted it as a compliment and left it there until i catted up and felt running "El Jefe" on the top tube when i was getting my rear end handed to me every weekend was a tad pretentious ----- hitting it with some brake cleaner or whatever i used removed the clearcoat
--
A little bit of paint problems add to character if they are earned, sure, --- but the worst ills are due to poor handling

I transitioned to track racing full time in late 1999 and went through a small handful of "modern" road bikes during that period, -- meanwhile, i had fitted this bike with a fixed gear rear wheel to use as a winter trainer --- so it had to suffer through that indignity

It later got relegated to the attic --- i dont know how or when the front derailleur was torn from the seat tube, or how the dent was put in the seat tube , -- but i am sure its due to poor handling by some of my lackeys ---

I welcome a dent or scratch earned in wheeled "combat" , but when someone hamfists moving my stuff from one warehouse to another is a different matter entirely



Top tube dent


seat tube dent from ripped off FDR (the FDR was dangling by the bottom bracket from the shifter cable in the original pic from 2013)


some serious paint ugliness from improper removal of sharpie words from top tube


normal wear and tear from a crash or 20 on the seat stays


Again -- normal wear and tear ---- LOL --- there's a Campy drive side crank arm and a Shimano non drive side arm in this pic (thankfully they are the same length ) typical field expedient repairs--- when the coke can shims stop working - throw something else on there


Overall --- if it werent for the dents from poor handling, i'd probably build it back and be proud of all the war wounds , ---

But the framemaker tells me he can fill those dents with brazing material as there is not any serious stress risers, - without doing full tube replacement on anything --- i like that angle , but i would at best need a serious touch up, -
Anyway

The journey continues --- everything is pulling loose easy with the exception of a stripped seat tube bolt ---- so i am going to drill that sucker and get this to the frame fixer next week

---- The frame is still wearing downtube shifters because i broke the mid range Ergopower stuff very early on and couldnt afford Chorus or Record --- so i just used DT's well into the brifter era --- didnt think a thing about it -- the bike was just a tool, not something to be fawned over , -- break it, fix it, move on
My aestheitical sensibilities are a tad different now
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Old 12-21-15, 12:22 AM
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Originally Posted by DMC707
I am bringing in one of my framesets for repair to my LBS -- Its a very traditional DeBErnardi, - not high end, but traditional , nice lugs, square geometry , etc. --- Its Aelle tubing, so not a big dollar rig either, but when i was in college , twas all i could afford , I was a Cat 4 with Italian tastes --- i had to get the OK from my then wife (now deceased - ovarian cancer at age of 25 ) to purchase

They were quoting me options on repairs and i let them know that within reason, cost is not a deterrent on this repair --- this was really the first frameset where i saw my young wife roll her eyes and say - "I hope you know what your doing" and sigh -- because that , plus the build kit (A modest Campagnolo ensemble - Veloce level approximately) actually did put a dent in my personal finances for a bit (not the home finances, but i was brown bagging it and working overtime to pay for my racing bug while trying to get through school )

After conferring on repair options, i saw some Open Corsa's behind the cash register and asked "Can you get these in 28c with a tan sidewall?" -- My mechanic in all seriousness said -- "Cool, a lot of you retro guys' are rollin' with the tan sidewalls still "
I said -- "Retro? -- that frameset back there was bought new in early '96 , so definitely not retro"
--- the guys had to set me straight and said -- no dude, thats retro now -- 20 years ----

-- I had a good laugh about this in the truck --- i rarely bring this crew any road stuff-- i usually need mechanical assistance on MTB projects , --- but i was amused that a bike with ErgoPower originally was now retro

- So i guess im an official "retro-geek" now . The original LBS i bought the frameset from used to rib me all the time as they were a Cannondale dealer -- I was the "steel is real" guy even though i was not much older than a kid myself -- i loved it -- I thought to myself, you had to be either fast enough to not care, or have a devil-may-care attitude (like a guy entering a Jaguar E-Type in an autocross) to ride steel in sanctioned competition in the mid 90's/early 2000's --- I fit in the latter category

I miss my sweet girl, and on fleeting occasions, she will still show up in a dream -- we spent a scant 3 years together when i was a young man just home from the service and in college - first real love ----- I have spent more time than that with the bike that she rolled her eyes at and let me buy

--- But without this back story, the bike is nothing but an Aelle tubeset -- and with the battle scars from literally several hundred criteriums and a lot of training miles -- most would say its next to worthless now - maybe 200 bucks

But this is what retro is all about --- to me the back story makes it priceless --- I have many bikes . I have had sponsor provided bikes, bikes for special events, lots of mountain bikes that come and go as technology changes, etc etc. -- but out of all of them, this one feels mostly like mine --

---- Last night was another one of those nights when my late wife showed up in a dream again so i got a bit emotional today i guess (wasn't about the bike - just a pop-in of sorts) --but I remember vivdly her rolling her eyes and saying "OK" - (I asked her 2 days after i put it on order, fittingly enough) --- not only that, i remember the bike shop owner taking a personal interest in it and building it himself -- he coated the inner frame tubes with hot linseed oil before building it up, so i would never had a corrosion problem , facing the BB shell, and headtube , etc -- just good stuff all the way around ---

Thanks for reading those who could hang in there

This is an old pic from my attic which i have shown before ---- but now the wheels are in motion and i will be updating this thread as we go along -- build thread style --

My main man , the frame man asked me if i wanted to touch up the paint or go for a re-spray -- its a nice pearl white -- given my sentimental feelings about this bike, i'm leaning towards a re-spray but it depends on how ugly the repairs are i guess --- again, those would be more badges of honor for a bike that has done everything ---

hard to say

She would have been 46 this coming year -- a lot of life left unlived. Still i remain. I am remarried - but i will never be 24 again and preparing to take on the world with my young bride - fresh from Desert Storm with a lot of big ideas

This will be quietly dedicated to my late wife, Dedra MCbride --- and i'll post up pics as we go along -- the tear down process starts in the AM




that bike is beautiful
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