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A Tale of Two Cities....umm....Centurion Ironmans

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A Tale of Two Cities....umm....Centurion Ironmans

Old 01-03-18, 08:13 PM
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jamesdak 
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A Tale of Two Cities....umm....Centurion Ironmans

So, a few months ago I got a beautiful 1989 Ironman Expert frameset from @texaspandj. I knew the size was on the small end of what I ride but the frame was so awesome looking. I had also always wanted a bike with the "marbled/smoke" look and this fit the bill. So one PM and a shipment later and it was mine. Took awhile to decide how to build it but I finally decided on a very nice Campagnolo Chorus 10 speed setup. Then I sourced a nice tubular wheelset for the building and chased after the other odds and ends I needed. As all this was going on I ran into another Ironman, a 1987 Expert, locally at a very cheap price. It wound up in my jeep and came home with me too. This one is pretty much stock and in decent shape. At the end of last week I finally dropped off the 1989 at my LBS to build up as I had a bunch of other projects going but couldn't wait to see this one all together. Today I picked it up and decided to share some pics. Since shooting those I figured I'd grab some shots of the 1987 one also. It's been seeing it's share of time on the road lately so it's a little dirty.

Oh and I guess the components make a big difference on the weight. The 1989 weighed in at 20 lbs and 12 ozs as pictured and with the addition of the two bottle cages. It's currently wearing a set of Fulcrum Quattro wheels. The 1987 weighs in a heftier 24 lbs as pictured below.

Here they are together:



The 1989:



The 1987:



Comparing the two:







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Old 01-03-18, 08:18 PM
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And more:



















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Old 01-03-18, 08:21 PM
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Old 01-03-18, 08:22 PM
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Old 01-03-18, 08:49 PM
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Wow! That 89 "smoke on the water" is good looking. Wise choice in components. I like that black fd adapter.
That 87 "Classic" is one of my favorites. The original 105 components are reliable, smooth, and hard to beat even 30 years later.
Not sure how much you spent, but those Ironman are so underrated and fortunately for us under valued.

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Old 01-03-18, 09:06 PM
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Originally Posted by texaspandj View Post
Wow! That 89 "smoke on the water" is good looking. Wise choice in components. I like that black fd adapter.
That 88 "Classic" is one of my favorites. The original 105 components are reliable, smooth, and hard to beat even 30 years later.
Not sure how much you spent, but those Ironman are so underrated and fortunately for us under valued.
The red one was less than the steller price you gave me on the other frameset. Hence why it had to come home with me. All I've got into it is time cleaning and tweaking it. And a bottle of red paint to touch it up some. Still needs a bit more of that and then to fix up the white some. The components are working great and mainly all I've done is ride it.

I got a great price from overseas on the used Chorus groupset I put on the 89. Then most the rest of it came from my parts bin. I splurged for that C.F. looking FD adapter and the black downtube adapters. I thought they'd look better than the silver ones I had.
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Old 01-03-18, 11:51 PM
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Nice pair. I've been enjoying my stock MV. Too bad your Smoke on the Water is too small. It looks great. I got an idea -- Get some Chorus hubs and lace them to some low profile rims and then put all the Chorus stuff on the Red One. Sell the small frame. Then find a proper sized Smoke and put everything back.
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Old 01-04-18, 04:29 AM
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Originally Posted by Classtime View Post
Nice pair. I've been enjoying my stock MV. Too bad your Smoke on the Water is too small. It looks great. I got an idea -- Get some Chorus hubs and lace them to some low profile rims and then put all the Chorus stuff on the Red One. Sell the small frame. Then find a proper sized Smoke and put everything back.
Oh, I'm not considering it too small at this point. I have other 54 cm bikes as well as at least one 53 cm that work fine for me. It's just the cosmetic appearance of the tall seatpost of a classic frame that looks a bit odd. As long as it feels good under me on the road all is good in my book.
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Old 01-04-18, 05:05 AM
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Originally Posted by jamesdak View Post
It's just the cosmetic appearance of the tall seatpost of a classic frame that looks a bit odd.
The seat post on the smaller frame looks pretty close to correct to me for proper fit. I'm not sure where people got the idea that you're supposed to have a short seat post on an older frame. For racing the seat post always sat pretty high and the bars pretty low if the frame fit the rider correctly. I've noticed on these forums many people run stems which are WAY too high and seat posts which are way too low, and this has somehow convinced others it's how older bikes should be set up.
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Old 01-04-18, 02:12 PM
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Originally Posted by exmechanic89 View Post
I've noticed on these forums many people run stems which are WAY too high and seat posts which are way too low, and this has somehow convinced others it's how older bikes should be set up.
For sure, this seems to be common. A counter though is that bars are really high up because of body comfort issues such as inevitably getting older and less flexible, or issues with one's back or wrists. Much of the population around here is on the older side of 40, just sayin.
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Old 01-04-18, 04:04 PM
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Originally Posted by exmechanic89 View Post
The seat post on the smaller frame looks pretty close to correct to me for proper fit. I'm not sure where people got the idea that you're supposed to have a short seat post on an older frame. For racing the seat post always sat pretty high and the bars pretty low if the frame fit the rider correctly. I've noticed on these forums many people run stems which are WAY too high and seat posts which are way too low, and this has somehow convinced others it's how older bikes should be set up.

Well, to be honest I run bikes from 53cm to even one 57 cm converted to 650b. But I'd say the mere fact that about 1/2 dozen other seatposts I have on hand won't work on this bike since they'd have to be above the minimal insertion point tends to illustrate that this is not the "ideal" frame for me as designed by the manufacturers. Of course my biking inseam is 33" despite only being 5'8'. I'd say 5" to 6" is the avg on most of my bikes. This one is closing in on 7".

For me, I like what I like. And mainly that's a bike that feels good under me. I have my set saddle to BB height and setback and usually as long as I can obtain that with a bike it's all that matters. Then the reach is set along with how aggressive (based on the bikes use) I go with the saddle to bar drop.
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Old 01-04-18, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
For sure, this seems to be common. A counter though is that bars are really high up because of body comfort issues such as inevitably getting older and less flexible, or issues with one's back or wrists. Much of the population around here is on the older side of 40, just sayin.
So true! Until about two years ago I was needing my bars pretty much even with the saddle due to blown discs in my back. I finally have the ability back to be comfortable in a more aggressive position.
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Old 01-04-18, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
For sure, this seems to be common. A counter though is that bars are really high up because of body comfort issues such as inevitably getting older and less flexible, or issues with one's back or wrists. Much of the population around here is on the older side of 40, just sayin.

Honestly if I wasnt in shape anymore to ride a drop bar bike in the normal position, I'd switch to a flat bar set up - no shame in that. Imo a road bike's lines are completely ruined by sky-high stems and low seats. And it certainly isnt an ideal way to ride.
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Old 01-04-18, 04:47 PM
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So are you selling the smoke? I've owned it and never seen it. Maybe round 2? I have some parts here....
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Old 01-04-18, 05:19 PM
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Originally Posted by RobbieTunes View Post
So are you selling the smoke? I've owned it and never seen it. Maybe round 2? I have some parts here....
Something tells me there's a story there?

I plan on keeping this beautiful baby. I knew when I got it that it would be on the smaller end but I'm fine with that. Unless of course, it just doesn't speak to me on the road, which I highly doubt. In fact I'm bummed that I got sick last night or I'd have taken it out for a maiden ride today. I'm a little too dopey from sinus meds to safely ride today. Hopefully tomorrow after work!

The seattube on this is the same length as the one on my Bob Jackson and the Opus III and I get along with those just fine. The top tube on this is longer. Can't speak to how different the angles are though.

Still have the right saddle for this coming too. It'll be black to match the bars with white along the bottom of it. The one on this is too narrow and not flat enough for me to ride for longer distances.
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Old 01-05-18, 06:41 PM
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Ok, rushed home and got the newly built up 89 out for 20 miles before the sun set. 32 degrees with a cool breeze so I was bundled up pretty good. Still managed a respectable 18.6 mph avg. The team at The Bike Shoppe did their usual fabulous build for me and there wasn't a single mechanical hiccup on the maiden voyage. The bike was fast, stable and comfortable over the rough stuff. All I really ask for of a bike. Had an impatient fool pass me is a sharp 90 degree turn while I was still moving but the bike just kept digging into the turn and kept me from swinging wide into the idiot driver. Spent some time above 20 mph with no drama and ran it up to almost 25 mph for about 1/2 mile. The only thing holding it back today was the fact that I forgot to hit the asthma inhaler before I started and the lungs were hating me today. Wish I had Chris Froome's doctor to keep me straight.

Oh and @RobbieTunes sorry, this is a keeper!
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