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My New Old Bottecchia Arrived-Tell Me It'll Be OK

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My New Old Bottecchia Arrived-Tell Me It'll Be OK

Old 08-29-17, 06:17 PM
  #1  
johnbobey
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My New Old Bottecchia Arrived-Tell Me It'll Be OK

Friends, here's the Bottecchia I acquired in a trade (some writing, so no cash or another bike), a 70's? Special (I can't find a number on her, other than "29" under a sticker on the set tube). She did look a little cleaner online, and dare I say she's one of the few things born after me that I may look better than (for now anyway).
DEC6CD7A-80F6-49F1-9ABB-615AEFDFB7B9 by John Bobey, on Flickr

She's a little dinged up, and believe this could be a case of it not being the age, but the mileage. I knew she was a "parts bin" bike, but there's a lot I like and will likely keep. I guess I'm hoping you can give me an indication that she'll clean up appropriately, and once I get all the shiny bits back to shiny, she'll be the looker I fell in love with online. (I guess I'm spoiled--my Centurion SE arrived showroom clean.)
83AE5C3C-47A8-4DD5-B725-46FD5327ABCA by John Bobey, on Flickr

SR Bars (Keep)
99A31B8E-915C-41B2-98AF-95CA3AC3D9E1 by John Bobey, on Flickr
Campy Shifters (Keep)
2FCC9ED8-FB57-4337-BB0F-5A2AB9EF5EAA by John Bobey, on Flickr
Carnielli Stem (Keep...is it complete...should there be some "caps" over the holes?)
99A31B8E-915C-41B2-98AF-95CA3AC3D9E1 by John Bobey, on Flickr
Weinman Brake Levers (Keep?)
74E0BDB6-E192-4BE3-A1EF-A4A3478A32C1 by John Bobey, on Flickr
Shimano FD and RD (Scrap)

No Name Seat Post (Keep)
No Name Seat That's Really Not Horrible (Keep Until Replaced)
93408AC7-775B-4E32-A1DD-202E65DA5940 by John Bobey, on Flickr
Chang-Star Front Brakes (Scrap?)

Shimano Rear Brakes (Scrap?)
SR Triple Crank (Scrap--Period Appropriate Nervar Crank coming from an angelic BF Member)
0797CA6B-0217-4A51-AF28-26927C7BB8F4 by John Bobey, on Flickr
MTB Pedals (Scrap)
Wheels (No name in the back, alloy USA Sun Levantner in the front)

DDD74091-F5BE-4548-A21A-B1BF6D794EC7 by John Bobey, on Flickr
I do like her vibe, and appreciate the little details like the pump holders mounted to the frame's underside.
9AD459B2-8F01-4FC2-94AE-B3E4EA6388BC by John Bobey, on Flickr
You know how these things go...if I replace all the Scrapped pieces and get all new rubber/cables, am I over or under $200? I believe the QR Skewers might be the wrongs size and perhaps incomplete. Headset condition remains unknown.

Tell me it'll be OK...is this a fool's/newbie's errand?
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Old 08-29-17, 06:24 PM
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She needs lots of TLC, if you are looking to restore her it will take basically a group with Valentino derailleurs and shifters(clamp on) and center pull brakes, I want to say Weinmann, but one of the experts can tell you exactly. I wouldn't use steel knurled rims like they came with, get some alloy rims, and some decent stainless spokes. Panaracer Pasela tires and the saddle of your choice. They are great daily riders, nothing uptown or high zoot, but neat bikes. I wish to goodness I had kept my 1972 white Special, to this day.

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Old 08-29-17, 06:41 PM
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It looks like a lot of the wear and tear are from poor storage (letting the bike get banged around, damaging decals, etc.) and being around enough moisture to get some corrosion on the components. I suggest take it down to bare frame, carefully degrease and clean. For where the decals are snagged and bunched up, you might be able to warm them up a bit with a blow dryer on low, then use some contact adhesive to re-adhere the loose bits, and hold it down with some painter's tape (take off very carefully, pulling at an acute angle away from the solid part of the tear). Get rid of any rust, and polish it with some good liquid polish or spray polish.

For the components, degrease, rinse, and polish a bit with some Mothers polish or something like that. You could get them really shiny if you use a polishing wheel, but that's probably overkill. I'd go after the seatpost most aggressively. When you get the tape off the bars, make sure there's no corrosion under there that affects the structural integrity.

I agree with Bill you probably want a decent set of vintage alloy wheels. My pref would be shiny polished alloys, and I personally wouldn't worry if they were really period correct, just vintage. Not sure if either of the hubs you have are keepers.

You'll be surprised how much better it all looks once it's been cleaned, polished, waxed, etc.
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Old 08-29-17, 07:15 PM
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Hubs were the steel 3 part Campagnolo items IIRC on these, looks as if the original center pulls and levers still there, they can do a decent job if they aren't frozen up any, be careful taking the apart, use your phone's camera to take pictures of them when assembled, from every imaginable angle for reference when reassembling them. Check out the blue Botty Special in "My Ten Speeds", if you haven't already been to his site. Its full of great information on how to get a C&V bike working and looking great.

The Bottechia decals during this period were some of the most fragile ones out, in the true Italian decal tradition. I'm actually surprised at how much of them is still there and legible to some extent. I had to be really careful with mine, back in the early 70s, they could tear or flake very easily, as was their paint as well. It will be rewarding to get her back to lookin' gud.......

Edit: Don't start having second thoughts, it can be brought up to snuff reasonably, you just have to watch for the deals and discounts. Oh yeah, Its gonna be alright.
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Last edited by qcpmsame; 08-31-17 at 07:18 PM. Reason: Buck up bunky, it will be fine.
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Old 08-29-17, 07:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Kevindale View Post
It looks like a lot of the wear and tear are from poor storage (letting the bike get banged around, damaging decals, etc.) and being around enough moisture to get some corrosion on the components.
I can't help wondering if maybe the $200+ wouldn't be better invested somewhere else...if this might be my first New Bike Guy-Shouldn't Have Bought That Bike moment?
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Old 08-29-17, 07:20 PM
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It's going to be okay.
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Old 08-29-17, 07:24 PM
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The frame looks ok and will look great with some tlc. I'd get some new decals to really set it off and then start thinking about the parts. Ideally you can upgrade what was in there initially but only you can decide where to draw the line. If I were keeping it but money were an issue I would make it a long term project and make it right the first time around. What that is is up to you.
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Old 08-29-17, 07:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Narhay View Post
The frame looks ok and will look great with some tlc. I'd get some new decals to really set it off and then start thinking about the parts. Ideally you can upgrade what was in there initially but only you can decide where to draw the line. If I were keeping it but money were an issue I would make it a long term project and make it right the first time around. What that is is up to you.
Hmmm...sound, practical thinking. I've heard of this approach but have yet to try it for myself. Perhaps now is the time! Thanks so much.
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Old 08-29-17, 07:42 PM
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What I'd suggest is to get some good wheels and tires first. The suggested Paselas would be nice without blowing the bank account. Then ride the bike, and see how it feels. If you think it's magic, and it almost surely will be with the good wheels and tires, then you can decide how much else to do with it.

And if you decide to pass on the frame, you at least will have a nice set of wheels and tires!
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Old 08-30-17, 03:43 AM
  #10  
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The first thing you should do is make the bike safe to ride and then ride it for a little while. This is the test phase of owning a vintage bicycle, in my opinion. Once satisfied that the bike is a good fit and tracks well, then you can start trashing and spending, but first do yourself the favor of test riding the bike. You might save yourself a lot of time, money and effort by doing so.

As for the Carnelli steering stem - it is complete and one of the prettiest stems of the vintage bicycle world, in my opinion...
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Old 08-31-17, 12:23 PM
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Thanks all for talking me off the ledge! I'm going to take this one slow and do her right...the more I'm around her, the more she grows on me. And I agree that the bar stem is a real gem. Watch This Space for updates!
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Old 08-31-17, 01:09 PM
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-----

Stem/bar tip: the Sakae Ringyo bar she now wears will have a centre diameter of 25.4mm whilst the ITM - Carnielli stem will have a clamp diameter of 26.0mm. should you elect to keep them together it would be best to add a shim. aluminum can be spooky stuff that way...

Brakes - OEM set was Universal centrepull, not the model 61 but the economy version the model 151 Sport:



Chainset: OEM was OMG cottered steel.

Wheels: OEM hub was Gnutti one-piece alloy QR large flange 36 hole. rims were Maccari serrated steel 27".

Pedals: OEM were Sheffield "rat trap" model 663:



-----
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Old 08-31-17, 07:12 PM
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Originally Posted by johnbobey View Post
Thanks all for talking me off the ledge! I'm going to take this one slow and do her right...the more I'm around her, the more she grows on me. ...
Stay off the ledge. I like the chrome stays and lugs and the graphics. I predict that bike will look better and ride better than most others in its price and vintage range.
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Old 08-31-17, 07:29 PM
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It will be well worth taking the timed effort to get the Special back in safe riding order. They are nice riding bikes for the level they were built at, a bike boom lower price point bike. Mine was really great as a daily rider, and for a teenager it was a good deal as an entry to cycling beyond my Sears "10-speed" (Puch) that just gave out from miles logged.

Take Randy's advice and get it rolling and safe, sounds like you have things started already. Looking forward to more posts about your adventures.

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Old 08-31-17, 09:46 PM
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And take Aubergine's advice and get good wheels and tires first. They are the best thing you can do to improve the ride and they are interchangeable with future projects if you don't fall in love with this one.
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Old 09-01-17, 04:18 PM
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Congrats and have fun with this model. Mine is built with the flavor of older parts than the frame but most robust, even where I occasionally off-road / single track ride. These gaspipe rides take a beating and accidental drops.

'''Throw''' away the original wheels and absolutely MUST go with a vintage 700c tubular wheelset. NOT clinchers. The original as equipped Universal brakes work perfect for the conversion. Guarantee the entire machine will be a transformation in speed and ride quality.

I rarely mention my riding but was way out of condition before the Dairyland Dare. Managed OK but now have been back to my regular riding schedule. Last Sat. I showed up to the local group ride, went with the fast guys / 35 mile sprint.

Rode the Botty beater........... single 52 ring and six speed 13/26t, very vintage Stronglight steel cottered crank / type 45 Competition. The bike is mostly built with emphasize on steel parts (exception to wheels, stem, brakes). Weight is 25 lbs.

I pulled my share with an avg. showing 24mph. Other guys said I was wrong.... thanks to the tight group we avg. just shy of 26. lol

Should you go with tubulars, can fit some fatty 32mm plus rubber and ride in luxury. The centerpull brakes easily work around the big rubber.
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Old 09-03-17, 12:47 AM
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keep the faith and see how she rides, but also don't feel bad if it does not work out and you pass her on- we all do it, even with bikes we love - as you can only ride so many. (some may cry heresy at this)
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Old 09-05-17, 06:19 PM
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Originally Posted by crank_addict View Post
Congrats and have fun with this model. Mine is built with the flavor of older parts than the frame but most robust, even where I occasionally off-road / single track ride. These gaspipe rides take a beating and accidental drops.

'''Throw''' away the original wheels and absolutely MUST go with a vintage 700c tubular wheelset. NOT clinchers. The original as equipped Universal brakes work perfect for the conversion. Guarantee the entire machine will be a transformation in speed and ride quality.

I rarely mention my riding but was way out of condition before the Dairyland Dare. Managed OK but now have been back to my regular riding schedule. Last Sat. I showed up to the local group ride, went with the fast guys / 35 mile sprint.

Rode the Botty beater........... single 52 ring and six speed 13/26t, very vintage Stronglight steel cottered crank / type 45 Competition. The bike is mostly built with emphasize on steel parts (exception to wheels, stem, brakes). Weight is 25 lbs.

I pulled my share with an avg. showing 24mph. Other guys said I was wrong.... thanks to the tight group we avg. just shy of 26. lol

Should you go with tubulars, can fit some fatty 32mm plus rubber and ride in luxury. The centerpull brakes easily work around the big rubber.
Glad you're back in the saddle--thanks for the advice!
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Old 09-05-17, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by jetboy View Post
keep the faith and see how she rides, but also don't feel bad if it does not work out and you pass her on- we all do it, even with bikes we love - as you can only ride so many. (some may cry heresy at this)
She's a keeper...I'm staring at her now!
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Old 09-05-17, 06:23 PM
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Things are looking up!

Thank to my new friend (and fellow academic) jetboy, I now have the first piece of the puzzle in getting this Italian beauty back on the road (and for just the cost of shipping--this forum is full of fantastic folks)! Thanks so much...now, a RD and FD...what shall they be?

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Old 09-05-17, 09:09 PM
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Originally Posted by juvela View Post
-----



Brakes - OEM set was Universal centrepull, not the model 61 but the economy version the model 151 Sport:






-----
Will the model 61s work? The 151s are tougher to find...
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Old 09-05-17, 09:23 PM
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Originally Posted by johnbobey View Post
Will the model 61s work? The 151s are tougher to find...
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Yes indeed, the reaches on the two models are identical.

Keep in mind that the frame was built for 27" wheel. If you elect to run 700's the brake reaches will increase by four mm from the stock arrangement. The calipers should have enough adjustment to work with the 700's. Center of slot dimension for the front is 55.5mm with a maximum reach of 60mm. Center of slot dimension for the rear caliper is 64mm with a maximum of 72mm.

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Last edited by juvela; 09-05-17 at 09:34 PM. Reason: addition
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Old 09-06-17, 01:09 PM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by juvela View Post
-----

Yes indeed, the reaches on the two models are identical.

Keep in mind that the frame was built for 27" wheel. If you elect to run 700's the brake reaches will increase by four mm from the stock arrangement. The calipers should have enough adjustment to work with the 700's. Center of slot dimension for the front is 55.5mm with a maximum reach of 60mm. Center of slot dimension for the rear caliper is 64mm with a maximum of 72mm.

-----
Wow, you really know your stuff. This is great info. If I may ask...if I get some new aluminum 27" wheels, what max size tires do you think I could run (including, and this may be heresy, fenders)?
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Old 09-06-17, 01:27 PM
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@johnbobey - If you are sticking with 27," 1 1/4" might be the widest tire and still be able to install fenders. And no, it is not heresy. In fact, now that you mention it, maybe I should install a set on my '73 Giro/Pro!
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Old 09-06-17, 02:24 PM
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Originally Posted by johnbobey View Post
Wow, you really know your stuff. This is great info. If I may ask...if I get some new aluminum 27" wheels, what max size tires do you think I could run (including, and this may be heresy, fenders)?

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OEM was 1 1/4" which works out to ~32c. you might squeak a 35 but probably not a 38. perhaps other readers with one of these frames handy could check for you...


-----
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