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1987 Centurion Ironman Master

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1987 Centurion Ironman Master

Old 05-07-19, 08:02 AM
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1987 Centurion Ironman Master

Rather than posting random updates in the Ironman thread, I thought I'd start a separate thread to condense everything in one place regarding my '87 Master.

To make a long story short about my newest acquisition: ebay listing in MA, local pick-up only, have friends about an hour away in CT, they buy it for me, I pay them, they pick it up, store it for me, and today in NC I took delivery of my '87 Ironman Master. The ebay listing had super terrible pics and a pitiful description, but I decided to take the chance at $100. Size 58, which should fit me, as opposed to my first toe-dipping into the IM pool which was just too big at 60cm and was sold off. Mostly original Shimano 600 stuff, handlebars are atrocious, front hub is Campagnolo Record, radially laced (thought you weren't supposed to do that with Campy Record hubs ) to an Araya Aero 4 tubular.
It's very, very filthy, but the paint looks pretty nice under all the grime, so it should clean and polish up well.
At this point I'm going to go one of two ways: do a cursory once-over to see if it can be safely ridable with zero $ put into it and ride it for the Clunker Challenge, since I am already at the max $$ amount for that. Or, if that is not possible, I am going to go through it, add some 'weight weenie' parts I've been stashing, and make it into a nice run-around-town rider.



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Old 05-07-19, 08:02 AM
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My friends bought it, I think in late January and have been storing it for me since then.
I did a preliminary check of things to check Clunker Challenge-ability: lubed the chain, derailleur pivot points, got the shifters working more smoothly, adjusted brake pads, that kind of stuff. I immediately encountered two things that put me over the CC budget limit: the harware store carriage bolt, washer, and nut were stripped and cross threaded, only providing minimal clamping on the seatpost, so that needed to be replaced. The front tubular tire does not hold air for very long. Therefore I am not going to use this for the CC this year, which means I can jump right in to rehabbing, upgrading, replacing things like the horrible tri bars, and going through everything mechanically.

I was able to ride it around my driveway a little, and I dunno, it just feels really great, even in it's current craptacular condition. Can't wait to go through it and get it actually roadworthy!


Well, My Trek is all tri-color 2x7 (except for the Dura Ace hubs), so I've "been there, done that". I have a good chunk of a Suntour Sprint group, and am seriously considering running that. Perhaps that guy has some Sprint parts? I don't know, but I do know that the guy knows how to get a hold of me.




Yellow threaded tires? I believe in situations such as this, one should put on yellow tires! I knew I was saving these for something. They're on 8 speed Tri-Color hubs and good rims, so I think I'll go with them for a while.


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Old 05-07-19, 08:03 AM
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Top tube is 56.5cm (565mm) center to center.

I have a couple questions:
I originally posted this as being an '86, based on the "6" in the serial number. However, I do not see this paint scheme and components in the '86 catalog, but they are in the '87 catalog.
So what "year" is it?





Secondly: is using a Campagnolo seatpost bolt acceptable? I think it's better than the nasty hardware store carriage bolt that was in there, but I don't know if it needs to be a Sugino bolt to be able to remain in the cult.

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Old 05-07-19, 08:04 AM
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Gave the IM a wipedown with a wet towel today, and even though it was not the best cleaning job, it looks considerably better. I removed the old Paramount cycling computer thing, removed the silver bike shop sticker, and began polishing compounding a little of the white paint near the Tange sticker, and it is shining up pretty nicely. The best thing though, was getting those tri-bars off, and a regular drop bar installed. Removed the Nitto stem that was there, and replaced it with a fancier Nitto stem.
I realize it needs to be taken down to a frame and thoroughly gone through, and that is the plan, but it's nice to see the potential at this stage of the game.


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Old 05-07-19, 08:05 AM
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Frame is completely stripped down, and I've begun gathering some parts, focusing on which direction to go with the yellow one. I bought some Cinelli Touch handlebars. I love the logo style, and the curvature of the bars.

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Old 05-07-19, 08:06 AM
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The bottom bracket that came with the IM had a pittled axle (plus it weighed a ton), so I dug out an OMAS titanium bottom bracket from my stash, cleaned it up, regreased it, ready to install...

Bottom bracket that was in it:


OMAS, ready to go in. A significant weight savings!

I am not going full-on weight weenie, just using up some cool parts and making things lighter. It's interesting to see the weight differences between components. So far I have been impressed by the (on paper) results. Can't wait until it's all together.

I "reduced" the weight a little more. Every little bit counts I guess.
Alloy chainring bolts at 8.8g, versus chromed steel at 26.2g per set of 5. Total "savings": 17.4g
The previously posted titanium stem and Cinelli handlebars come in at 519.3g total. I think the stem that was on it was the original and that was 327.5g. Since there were tri bars on it, I don't know what an original set would weigh, but I would have to presume more than ~200g, so there should be some decent weight "saving" there too.
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Old 05-07-19, 08:09 AM
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Well, the OMAS bottom bracket (and the other three titanium bottom brackets I have) didn't play nicely with the crankset I want to use, so I'm going with the orignal steel bottom bracket that came with the crankset I'm going to use. Oh well, at least I can reduce the weight a little by using the titamium crank bolts.
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Old 05-07-19, 09:43 AM
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I got my Ironman down to 21-1/2 lb by installing Microshift brifters and Vuelta XRP racing wheels on it. You shouldn't have a problem getting yours close to 21 lbs too.
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Old 05-07-19, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by hazetguy View Post
Well, the OMAS bottom bracket (and the other three titanium bottom brackets I have) didn't play nicely with the crankset I want to use.
What was the problem ? Taper , length ?

Last edited by markwesti; 05-07-19 at 12:34 PM.
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Old 05-07-19, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by hazetguy View Post
Top tube is 56.5cm (565mm) center to center.

I have a couple questions:
I originally posted this as being an '86, based on the "6" in the serial number. However, I do not see this paint scheme and components in the '86 catalog, but they are in the '87 catalog.
So what "year" is it?...
Yellow white Master is 87. Your s/n says frame made in July of 86. My identical bike is N6S... So made a little later in 86.
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Old 05-07-19, 04:40 PM
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The bb issue was a combination of spindle length, taper, just not being able to get a good chainline distance, etc.

Regarding 86 vs. 87: this was discussed in the Ironman thread. I know it's an 87 model, made in 86. I just copied and pasted my posts from the Ironman thread to condense them without doing much editing. Thanks for confirming what the Ironman Mafia said in the Ironman thread.
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Old 05-07-19, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by texaspandj View Post
Have you cleaned frame and if so, how bout a pic of that?
Yes. I cleaned and polishing compounded the frame and fork. There are many scratches to de-rust and touch up, but for now I'm just gonna let them go. I did remove the chainstay guard thing, as it was mostly peeled up, and I'll put a nice looking one on in its place. Some pics:





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Old 05-07-19, 08:32 PM
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Hot Dang!
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Old 05-07-19, 10:06 PM
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Looks great and is making me feel lame for not doing anything yet with my Ironman!
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Old 05-07-19, 10:21 PM
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Looks great and is making me feel lame for not doing anything yet with my Ironman!
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Old 05-09-19, 10:41 AM
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The frame cleaned up nicely!

LOL @ The "Ironman Mafia"
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Old 05-23-19, 10:13 AM
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Man I love the centurion. I have my father-in-laws from the early 70s the thing is a tank.... and I mean tank it weighs a ton.
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Old 05-23-19, 06:46 PM
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Great results. I should try that with my Miami Vice bike.
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Old 05-23-19, 07:19 PM
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Waiting to see how you like your IM ride compared to your Trek 660.
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Old 05-24-19, 11:10 AM
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Originally Posted by hazetguy View Post
Yes. I cleaned and polishing compounded the frame and fork. There are many scratches to de-rust and touch up, but for now I'm just gonna let them go. I did remove the chainstay guard thing, as it was mostly peeled up, and I'll put a nice looking one on in its place. Some pics:





Love the yellow tires.
This stuff would look great on that bike!
Sante groupset (no connection to seller)
Good luck with the build.
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Old 05-24-19, 11:14 AM
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Thanks everyone. I am waiting for a part to arrive before moving forward with the build.
I am going "non-Shimano" on this bike, at least as much as possible. Once that last part arrives I'll start posting some pics again.
To clean the frame & fork, I use terrycloth towels, cut into strips, Turtle Wax Polishing Compount Light to Medium Cleaner, and a lot of elbow grease.
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Old 05-24-19, 11:20 AM
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Originally Posted by hazetguy View Post
Thanks everyone. I am waiting for a part to arrive before moving forward with the build.
I am going "non-Shimano" on this bike, at least as much as possible. Once that last part arrives I'll start posting some pics again.
To clean the frame & fork, I use terrycloth towels, cut into strips, and Turtle Wax Polishing Compount Light to Medium Cleaner, and a lot of elbow grease.
What a dramatic change... really nice work!
Seedless cotton diaper batting, available cheap at most fabric stores, works great for polishing as well.
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Old 05-24-19, 12:45 PM
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Headset is on the way. My little part in Ironman world dominance.
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Old 05-24-19, 02:22 PM
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And I really appreciate that Robbie. You know I owe you one (or more) for that. Thanks again!
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Old 06-05-19, 06:51 PM
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Well, I got my other Ironman all readied for the Clunker Challenge #5 , and then saw the yellow one, all disassembled, parts in a few boxes, looking all sad. So I decided that today was the day to begin assembly (darn it, I want to ride this already!!)
Before I did anything, I weighed the bare frame. No headset, no dropout screws, no bottom bracket, just the bare frame. It came in right under 6 pounds.




I found a decent Tange Levin CD headset in my bag o' goodies, cleaned, lubed, installed that, and then just kept going.
My goal for the yellow Ironman is -no Shimano parts-, and I'm getting there. I had most of a Suntour Sprint group and wanted to go that route. Two things popped up to sorta shoot that idea down for the moment:
-I wanted more than a 26 tooth rear gear, and apparently the Sprint rear only will handle a 26. So I dug out a medium cage Suntour Cyclone and put that on, along with a 30 tooth freewheel on the temporary test wheel.
-When I installed the Sprint shifters, the left one felt great, no problem. However, the right shifter (for the rear derailleur) has noticeable front-to-back play. I triple checked parts diagrams, and there are no missing parts (the shifter set is practically new), everything was installed correctly, yet there was still front to back movement of the lever arm, in all three settings. Since I only plan on using friction shifting at this time, I put on some other Suntour shifters I had laying around (I think they are Superbe) and I'll see how well those work.
I installed the brake calipers and levers I got from Ex Pres, they look awesome. Thanks again for those!
I cleaned, repacked, and installed the Sprint bottom bracket, cranks, pedals, front derailleur, all without any significant issues. The pedals desparately need lubrication, but the dust caps don't provide a hole for greasing, and I don't want to drill one. So I'll have to figure that one out at a later time.


There's a bit more to do, but I feel like I made good progress today.











Shimano chainrings, for now (they're the best ones I have in the sizes I want):




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