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Just picked up a 1990's Zullo TVM frame - anyone know these?

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Just picked up a 1990's Zullo TVM frame - anyone know these?

Old 08-24-18, 09:30 AM
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Just picked up a 1990's Zullo TVM frame - anyone know these?

I've just purchased what looks to be a TVM team issue frame (number hanger) with the wild paintjob of the era.
I've sent the frame number to Zullo in hopes of getting more info. The price was right (seller accepted my offer) so I went for it after a little bit of research.

Here's what I know:
- probably 1991/1992 based on team images of the era
- Columbus EL tubing. My favorite tubing so far (my Tommasini Tecno had it, and it was an incredible ride)
- Number hanger implies team issue (I could be totally wrong here). Perhaps a replica frame from the era
- Frame needs some love. Rust/corrosion/chips need attention

I look forward to refurbishing the frame (keeping as much original as possible) and building it up to use as a rider. Thinking Record 10 speed. Slightly later groupset, I realize, but (to me) it represents a classic look with more modern functionality (including availability of spare parts). If not that, perhaps Dura Ace 7700. Not sure if I'll go with STI/Ergo or DT shifters.

Does anyone here know much about these frames? I'd love some insight.









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Old 08-24-18, 09:42 AM
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Congrats on the purchase of your Zullo! Love the Silva brake bridge. Definitely going to be a great rider. Post pics once the build is done!

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Old 08-24-18, 11:09 AM
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What a stunning paint job, thank goodness it's way too big for me or else I'd probably go mad with envy!!
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Old 08-24-18, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by GrainBrain View Post
What a stunning paint job, thank goodness it's way too big for me or else I'd probably go mad with envy!!
Yes - I'm digging the paint scheme. Very cool. I'm hoping I can find a complimentary color for the repairs, and will probably have the fork crown chromed once the scale is cleaned up.

I'm on the hunt for a Record 10sp group in decent shape, but I'm also considering a modern build with silver Potenza or even Chorus. The latter would be accompanied with black stem/seatpost - I know the black component theme was present in the 90's so I think it would look pretty good.

Anyway, still looking at options. First choice is the 10sp group if I can find one. Hunting on Ebay and elsewhere to see what I can find.
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Old 08-24-18, 03:36 PM
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Mod (CF/black) vs retro (silver) build

On the fence on the direction to take it......
It is technically a "modern" steel bike - 90's build, modern tubing, 130mm spacing, etc......
I think I could take it either way. Found a couple of photos online, and of the two, I think I prefer the modern build. Since I'm not doing a tribute build with 7400/7700, I think I may as well go for it. There. So I've decided. Maybe.......

Modern build with silver components


Modern build with CF/Black

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Old 08-24-18, 07:33 PM
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Originally Posted by canyoneagle View Post
On the fence on the direction to take it......
It is technically a "modern" steel bike - 90's build, modern tubing, 130mm spacing, etc......
I think I could take it either way. Found a couple of photos online, and of the two, I think I prefer the modern build. Since I'm not doing a tribute build with 7400/7700, I think I may as well go for it. There. So I've decided. Maybe.......

Modern build with silver components


Modern build with CF/Black

The black but with black saddle and tape.
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Old 08-24-18, 08:24 PM
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Silver, black bar/saddle
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Old 08-25-18, 06:30 AM
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Wow, love the paint!

I think black modern will look great in contrast with that yellow.
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Old 08-25-18, 08:13 AM
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Just heard back from Zullo homself. Pretty cool.
Looks like a perfect frame for this area (Chapel Hill, NC) although we do have some short/steep hills. I'll see how it goes.

e-mail from Zullo:

Good morning,

Thank you for the email. I saw your pictures. Yes, this frame was made in 1990 and was made with very light tubes Columbus. The number is made as follows: 64 is the size of the frame, so a very tall frame. The number 698 is the frame-number made in that year. The numbers in that period started always in January with 001.

EL-tubes were made for time-trials and flat roads. Which makes the frame so nice is the colour, this colour was used for the TVM prof-team in Holland.

Best regards, Tiziano Zullo.


Size wise, the seller says the 64 is C-T, which I sincerely hope is the case - he provided a 62.5 c-c in his ad, which is perfect for me with a 59-60 TT. I can make a 64 work for a "french fit"
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Old 08-25-18, 10:23 AM
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Originally Posted by canyoneagle View Post
...., and will probably have the fork crown chromed once the scale is cleaned up.
Just the crown? If you get this done, I'd like to hear how it's done.

+1 on silver components with black bar+saddle.

Very cool paint scheme
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Old 08-25-18, 12:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Lascauxcaveman View Post
Just the crown? If you get this done, I'd like to hear how it's done.

+1 on silver components with black bar+saddle.

Very cool paint scheme
Not sure if it is feasible.
I think I'll actually just treat the rust and prime/paint in the affected areas - will experiment with the right colors.

Looks like (by the sticker) that this is the EL-OS tubeset, not just EL, which is the main reason I went for it.
Still contemplating build options. I have found an NOS (2014) 11 speed Athena group (black, not silver) that I think would be a good fit aesthetically - the new Campy 4-arm cranks do not excite me at all from an aesthetic standpoint, especially for a steel frame.

Otherwise, still contemplating getting a used 8/9 speed group, but that is a gamble as far as condition, need for rebuilding ergos (with hard to find parts), etc. Something very enticing about a new groupset for what is intended to be a rider (not a wall hanger).
I love the 90's Record/Chorus groups though, so still tugging at me.
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Old 08-25-18, 04:38 PM
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I've decided to do the modern build on this one. No offense to the hardcore C&V'ers, but as a 1990+ frame it probably isn't even on that radar. I definitely would not have gone this route with a Molteni Merckx

I put in an order on Chain Reaction for the 2018 Chorus group and BB cups, and have a set of used Nucleon wheels in transit from an Ebay seller. Coming together.....

I look forward to this one. I've been missing the Tommasini, and feel this will fill that gap. Now I can sell the carbon fiber bike that I am currently riding. Great bike, but not the same as a good steel steed IMO.
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Old 09-15-18, 02:04 PM
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Update - I've Posted a refurb and build thread over on 50+ for those who want to follow the process.....

Retro-mod road bike project - Mixing new and classic

I put it there since it probably falls outside of what many feel is appropriate content for the C&V area.
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Old 09-21-18, 07:49 PM
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Posted this on my build thread, but figured I'd do an update here.
I like how it is coming together. Great mix of new and old
Almost there......
Stand-in front wheel while I tension the other.

18.3 pounds as it sits without tires, so sub-20 target is looking good. Light enough for me. Can't wait to ride it

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Old 09-21-18, 10:43 PM
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Alright, almost there. Also posted in the Sept yellow bikes thread, because I think it counts

Few final bits and she's done.

I am looking forward to my maiden voyage this weekend.
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Old 09-21-18, 11:10 PM
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Looking great!
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Old 09-21-18, 11:34 PM
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I like the black on that bike- right choice i think. 90s bikes rule! yeah I said it.
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Old 09-22-18, 12:46 AM
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Aaaaaand done....

Big shout out to JoeJack951 who set me up with his brilliant conversion headset. Ingenious!

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Old 09-22-18, 10:24 AM
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Daylight shots.
initial (short) test ride to dial things in... fabulous magic carpet ride



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Old 10-05-18, 04:48 PM
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I've been absolutely loving the bike. Perfect blend of the ride quality that only a handmade steel frame can provide, with the performance and convenience of modern components. Loving it.
At its heart is a sublime 1990 EL-OS pro frame - Absolutely fabulous. I had known of Zullo, but had never ridden one. This is on par with my old Tommasini.

First ride today with my new saddle. Dramatic improvement. I think it looks better, too. It reminds me of the profile of the old Concor saddles

Updated headshot for internet vanity quotia

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Old 10-05-18, 07:28 PM
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Originally Posted by canyoneagle View Post
I put it there since it probably falls outside of what many feel is appropriate content for the C&V area.
Nah, that bike is perfect here on the C&V forum. Its steel and its made out of old school Columbus tubing with a cool 90's paint job, and IMHO that's always going to be vintage.

Great bike and great build. It all goes very well together. I'd be proud to take that baby out for a ride myself. I can hear the excitement in your posts, you really do love it, and thats very cool. Ride it well!
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Old 10-05-18, 07:47 PM
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Nice looking bike! Good choice on the wheels, they complement the frame and group very well.
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Old 10-05-18, 07:57 PM
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Thanks,guys!

For me this is a bit of the nostalgia I feel for my early years, falling in love with cycling in the 70's. The aesthetic of that era is my personal sweet spot. I think we each have our own "sweet spot".
This bike hits my buttons
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Old 10-13-21, 02:59 AM
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Hello, I see that this is an old thread and would probably have just messaged you but can't until I have 10 posts. I have an early 90s Zullo that I restored a while back. I built it up with a full 8s Superbe Pro groupset. I am thinking to re-build it now with a modern groupset. I've always been a DA person but I recently bought a Ritchey Breakaway with 11s Campy SR and absolutely love it. So I am thinking something modern Campy. I prefer to keep it silver for my Zullo and like the 11s Centaur group. Unfortunately, I work overseas and don't have access to the bike right now but would like to start collecting the parts. Can you tell me the specifics for the headset/stem and bottom bracket you used?
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Old 10-13-21, 04:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Lascauxcaveman View Post
Just the crown? If you get this done, I'd like to hear how it's done.

+1 on silver components with black bar+saddle.

Very cool paint scheme
I had mine built with 10 speed Chorus.

You are in for a treat.
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