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Cinelli? Small mystery frame

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Cinelli? Small mystery frame

Old 06-07-18, 06:24 AM
  #1  
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Cinelli? Small mystery frame









I saw this bike on the local cl and it was too interesting and strange not to check out. Of course when I saw it in person I couldn't help but pick it up. This is one of those bikes (for me anyways) that you can't help but smile at, and I love a good mystery bike.

So here it is: an 18 inch frame c-c with a 27" rear and 24" front wheel, a la georgena Terry. It has a Cinelli bottom bracket and campagnolo dropouts front and rear. I really love the long point lugs on the frame as well. The bike is outfitted with a mishmash of early 80s Shimano components, and has a 27.0 seatpost though I think it will actually fit a 27.2.

Anyone out there have a clue what this is? I'm thinking the frame may be Italian but i am not well versed in older Italian frames.

Last edited by morri869; 06-07-18 at 06:28 AM.
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Old 06-07-18, 07:05 AM
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How odd. Not a Cinelli. I'm thinking a one-off amateur build.
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Old 06-07-18, 07:11 AM
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-----

Doubt provenance Italy.

Work, details and Imron paint finish suggest a U.S. product.

Would expect a shell thread of BSC rather than Italy.

Portacatena dropouts a possible dating aid; this and other details suggest early '80's.

​​​​​​​-----
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Old 06-07-18, 11:17 AM
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My guess would have been early 80s as well.

​​​​​​I'm curious, what gives the paint away as an imron finish? To me it looks like a respray, there are some pretty obvious wavy and thick areas that would indicate a lesser quality paint job. I assumed it wasn't original.
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Old 06-07-18, 11:40 AM
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Originally Posted by morri869 View Post
My guess would have been early 80s as well.

​​​​​​I'm curious, what gives the paint away as an imron finish? To me it looks like a respray, there are some pretty obvious wavy and thick areas that would indicate a lesser quality paint job. I assumed it wasn't original.
-----

Dupont Imron has a "look" to it. When you have worked with it you learn to recognise it. The finish tends to be more "chippy" than "scratchy"; i.e. it is more vulnerable to chipping than scratching. It is certainly possible it may be a respray. The frame is clearly a student/amateur effort so the imperfectly applied paint finish would be consistent with this.

Should you discover a serial number it likely will not be higher than something such as 004.

​​​​​​​BTW - have you checked shell thread as yet? The bicycle's Yoshi cups will be marked so no measurement needed.

​​​​​​​-----

Last edited by juvela; 06-07-18 at 12:31 PM. Reason: addition
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Old 06-07-18, 12:08 PM
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Those fork stiffening tangs on the outside of the fork legs have me thinking amateur build, too.

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Old 06-07-18, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by juvela View Post
-----

Dupont Imron has a "look" to it. When you have worked with it you learn to recognise it. The finish tends to be more "chippy" than "scratchy"; i.e. it is more vulnerable to chipping than scratching. It is certainly possible it may be a respray. The frame is clearly a student/amateur effort so the imperfectly applied paint finish would be consistent with this.

Should you discover a serial number it likely will not be higher than something such as 004.

BTW - have you checked shell thread as yet? The bicycle's Yoshi cups will be marked so no measurement needed.

-----
So far nothing on a serial number, but I just had a chance to check the bb threading. It is indeed 1.37 x 24 which would make sense for an American build.

​​​​​​​Also, you're spot on with the finish. In the places the paint is marred it is chipped rather than scratched
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Old 06-07-18, 09:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Drillium Dude View Post
Those fork stiffening tangs on the outside of the fork legs have me thinking amateur build, too.

DD
They're on both the inside and outside of the fork which is pretty unique. Would this offer any functional advantage over them just being on the inside?

Personally I like the extra visual on the outside of the fork. They just need to be painted to bring some contrast to the frame
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Old 06-08-18, 12:58 AM
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The second/outer set of reinforcers on the fork were carefully re-shaped to fit the crown. Not an amateur booboo, although just for style. The inner ones fit into a recess in the crown- therefore stronger.
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Old 06-08-18, 03:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Insidious C. View Post
The second/outer set of reinforcers on the fork were carefully re-shaped to fit the crown. Not an amateur booboo, although just for style. The inner ones fit into a recess in the crown- therefore stronger.
Nobody called that feature a boo-boo - just pointing out that no manufacturer (particularly Cinelli) did it that way. Because this feature isn't common in the slightest, a good guess is this frame is the result of some amateur brazing.

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Old 06-08-18, 04:31 PM
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So, who was building proportional frames before Georgena Terry, besides Bill Boston? It's definitely proportional and very late 1970s to early 1980s.
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Old 06-08-18, 05:03 PM
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Originally Posted by morri869 View Post
So far nothing on a serial number, but I just had a chance to check the bb threading. It is indeed 1.37 x 24 which would make sense for an American build.

​​​​​​​Also, you're spot on with the finish. In the places the paint is marred it is chipped rather than scratched
-----

Thank you for the response.

Imron finishes are hard to the point of brittleness so while they resist scracthing fairly well they can be chip prone. Typically the paint bonds to the primer better than the primer bonds to the metal so that more of the chips go down to the metal while some do go down only to the primer.

If unaltered since construction rear spacing will be 126mm. Would expect you to be on the button regarding the acceptance of a 27.2mm pillar.

Tubing - would expect build to be with either Columbus SL/SP or with Reynolds 531C. If you shine a light into the south end of the steerer you will be able to check for the rifling which indicates Columbus. Another spot to look is the chainstay dimples. The "floors" of Columbus dimples have a sharp crease as a chisel might make. Reynolds dimples have rounded floors with no crease.

Idle thought - frame would seem to be of right era to have been done by one of the students of the framebuilding classes which went on beginning in the later seventies. Recall Bruce Gordon teaching classes in Oregon. Did not Paterek and Proteus offer instruction as well?

​​​​​​​-----

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Old 06-08-18, 05:49 PM
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A Long Time Ago In A City Far Far Away...

Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
So, who was building proportional frames before Georgena Terry, besides Bill Boston? It's definitely proportional and very late 1970s to early 1980s.
Well, Ms. Terry was building bikes before her company ever existed.

A couple of decades ago when I was in Pgh and very actively involved in the "bike scene" and churning out Christmas bikes for kids at Kraynick's on Penn, I met a woman who had a bike Ms. Terry built for her when Ms. Terry was still in Pgh. It resembled this bicycle. Jerry told me Ms. Terry frequented his shop. I've never had the pleasure of meeting Ms. Terry.

She's still around. It might behoove the OP to send a photograph of this bicycle to Ms. Terry's attention?
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Old 06-09-18, 08:48 PM
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Originally Posted by machinist42 View Post
Well, Ms. Terry was building bikes before her company ever existed...
<br /><br />True, but it's always been my understanding that Terry developed her version of the proportional bicycle after she had established her first, full time frame/bicycle business, Her second (or renamed) company that most members are familiar with, happened when she decided to focus solely on bicycles for women.
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Old 06-09-18, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
<br /><br />True, but it's always been my understanding that Terry developed her version of the proportional bicycle after she had established her first, full time frame/bicycle business, Her second (or renamed) company that most members are familiar with, happened when she decided to focus solely on bicycles for women.
The bike I saw was proportional. The woman I met told me Ms. Terry built it for her when Ms. Terry was in Pgh.
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Old 06-10-18, 08:06 PM
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Confirmed not a Terry

Originally Posted by machinist42 View Post
Well, Ms. Terry was building bikes before her company ever existed.<br /><br />A couple of decades ago when I was in Pgh and very actively involved in the "bike scene" and churning out Christmas bikes for kids at Kraynick's on Penn, I met a woman who had a bike Ms. Terry built for her when Ms. Terry was still in Pgh. It resembled this bicycle. Jerry told me Ms. Terry frequented his shop. I've never had the pleasure of meeting Ms. Terry.<br /><br />She's still around. It might behoove the OP to send a photograph of this bicycle to Ms. Terry's attention?
Well, I took your advice and reached out to Georgena Terry via email. She was very helpful, but was able to confirm that it was not one of her early bikes.

She too suggested it may be an amateur build, so I suppose the frame may have to stay a mystery unless anyone has any other leads.
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Old 06-10-18, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by morri869 View Post
Well, I took your advice and reached out to Georgena Terry via email. She was very helpful, but was able to confirm that it was not one of her early bikes.

She too suggested it may be an amateur build, so I suppose the frame may have to stay a mystery unless anyone has any other leads.
Well, it was a thought? Thanks for relaying your finding.
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Old 06-11-18, 08:23 AM
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Is that different top of seat stay treatment Drive side vs Non-Driveside another indication of an amateur build or have other builders done this? Don
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Old 06-11-18, 08:37 AM
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I had a green fuji of the same ilk/so I believe the specific build was around before the "Terry" Ive also seen a nishiki with the 24" front wheel. But for finding that front tire (quite difficult) /I would have kept my Terry-but donated to someone even shorter than me. The fuji I donated to a gal vet in need of transportation. Fun rides, but I found them lacking concerning speed. Hard to explain.
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