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Leo: The 1960s Bottecchia...randonneur?

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Leo: The 1960s Bottecchia...randonneur?

Old 08-13-19, 05:07 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig
Heck I would have bought that bike for the head badge. Nice score.

If I had a bike shop like that near me, I'd be broke by now,
Or the head lugs! Fancy 'n shiny

Kurt, this looks like an interesting project. Gonna build it up vintage or resto-mod?

DD
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Old 08-13-19, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by bikemig
Heck I would have bought that bike for the head badge. Nice score.

If I had a bike shop like that near me, I'd be broke by now,
To be honest, I'd rather have the Bottecchia badge. It'd leave less loose ends.

Thankfully, this was a partial trade. Four frames plus a C-note for the Bottecchia and the all-chrome Raleigh Pro Mk.IV, which is coming along well. Seems like a lot, but I wasn't in love with any of the frames I traded off. It worked out fine.

He has an excellent early '70s Frejus in brown with creme headtube that I'm really tempted by (barely visible in one photo), but it has no fork. That's a deal-breaker right there, and nobody has come up with one in ISO/For Trade. A shame too, as I'm overstocked with Italian-threaded Nuovo Record parts

Originally Posted by stardognine
Roger that, nice grab. �� And roger on being broke all the time, if that stuff's too close. ����
What's the deal on that Cannondale, with the "unique" stem? That colorway rocks, with a better stem. ��
No idea why anyone electrical-taped the stem on that Cannondale. With that much lugged steel at hand, I didn't even look at the 1970's machines.

That weird chromed thing that looks like an electroforged Raleigh DL-1 is apparently some sort of 1910's track racer too, complete with a foot-and-a-half sized chainring. If someone hadn't chromed the thing, I might actually care about it.

Originally Posted by Drillium Dude
Or the head lugs! Fancy 'n shiny

Kurt, this looks like an interesting project. Gonna build it up vintage or resto-mod?
It has to be a resto-mod due to the 1980's updating to the frame. The braze-ons kill any chance at making it look right as an original build.

When I first saw it, I thought it was French, and I still think it has that look. As such, I want to do a porteur build with it, with the hopes of shoving 650Bs under it. Mimicking the blue The 1947 Alex Singer in The Golden Age of Handbuilt Bicycles is what I'm after.

I'm also certain that the Velo Orange Grand Gru is going to factor into the build (and likely Velo-Orange handlebars and fenders as well). Has to be the most beautiful stem on the market today (even though the clamp area could be a wee bit prettier).




The only thing I'm (unreasonably) set on is that elusive, steel, Bottecchia headset. I want at least one thing on the frame that suggests it's not just another 1970's lugged frame.




-Kurt
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Old 09-05-19, 09:50 PM
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This build is taking an interesting twist. As I mentioned before, I've been thinking "lightweight city bicycle" a-la Rene Herse ever since I saw this thing.

Thanks to @dweenk, something I've debated for a while now is set in stone: An IGH drivetrain. Seems like that's my thing as of recent, given the SRAM G9 I put in the 1980 Raleigh Sports. This one barely weighs more than a steel Sturmey AW despite the 8 gears, while the SRAM weighs about the same as a small cruise ship.



Given all the braze-ons on it ruining the originality, why not? This is the look I'm aiming for (pic is from The Golden Age of Handbuilt Bicycles - if you don't already own a copy, you should get one - they're under $15 a copy these days):



I am convinced that I want to do something unconventional with the crank though - a Shimano GC-100. I think the idea of a Japanese crank with constructeur styling is the perfect quirk to suit a 1960's Italian bike with 1980's braze-on modifications and a Taiwanese pseudo-English hub trying to look like a 1940's French bike.

It also means I can use any affordable Italian-threaded JIS taper bottom bracket.



-Kurt
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Old 09-09-19, 08:10 AM
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But you'll run one chainring, right? Doesn't that rear hub need an extra-small chainring?
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Old 09-09-19, 09:15 AM
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@cudak888 Do you actually have one of those Shimano 600 3 pin cranks? I've been keeping an eye out for them lately and haven't seen them pop up anywhere.

If you need new chainrings, the ebay.fr store vintagebicycle.fr has a slew of NOS Shimano chainrings for this crank. Coincidentally this store seems to be run by Jean Paul Routens, who made the bike featured in my other thread (and now runs a large bike shop/mail order parts business in Grenoble). Otherwise, since they are 116bcd you can also just find any Stronglight, TA, or the various steel chainrings that were made in this size over the years.
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Old 09-09-19, 05:35 PM
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On a side note: Has anyone ever run a Sturmey-Archer Dynohub at 100mm OLN? Did such a thing ever exist?

I have a spare 1946 Dynohub that'd suit the build really nicely, unless there's something else more suitable from the period that I can swap directly for.

Originally Posted by noglider
But you'll run one chainring, right? Doesn't that rear hub need an extra-small chainring?
One ring.

Not 100% sure of the Sturmey's gearing, but thanks for reminding me of the chainring size. I've been lackadaisically assuming that setup will be similar to my SRAM G9 (which should be OK with 46/19t gearing, according to Sheldon's gear inch calculator).

Originally Posted by TenGrainBread
@cudak888 Do you actually have one of those Shimano 600 3 pin cranks? I've been keeping an eye out for them lately and haven't seen them pop up anywhere.

If you need new chainrings, the ebay.fr store vintagebicycle.fr has a slew of NOS Shimano chainrings for this crank. Coincidentally this store seems to be run by Jean Paul Routens, who made the bike featured in my other thread (and now runs a large bike shop/mail order parts business in Grenoble). Otherwise, since they are 116bcd you can also just find any Stronglight, TA, or the various steel chainrings that were made in this size over the years.
I almost bought one on eBay from France. Seller relisted; it has one bid on it right now. Seller's feedback is starting to make him look like a right jerk though.

I've seen JP's rings on eBay. Tempting, but now that Tom has mentioned the front chainring size, I think I have to go back to Sheldon's gear calculator again.

-Kurt
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Old 09-10-19, 07:18 AM
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Yes, check it out, because if I remember right, the SA 8-speed hub is designed for small-wheeled bikes. All gears are overdrive except for the lowest one so you may need a 30T or so chainring.
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Old 09-10-19, 04:54 PM
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Originally Posted by noglider
Yes, check it out, because if I remember right, the SA 8-speed hub is designed for small-wheeled bikes. All gears are overdrive except for the lowest one so you may need a 30T or so chainring.
From what I've read, that's what the X-RF8W is for; not the X-RD8. The numbers I was getting from Sheldon's calculator weren't reassuring though.

EDIT: Yep, you're right. Direct drive on first. Ought to put this on the LimeBike (Yes, they have a tiny front chainring).

There are some Raleigh Twenties here I can put it to use on, if all else fails.

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Old 11-03-19, 12:24 PM
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New plan. Received an email early this morning from a friend. Turns out someone else in the apartment building was throwing out their Electra, after a run-in with a trailer during their commute.

This wouldn't usually be of any interest, but take a look at the drivetrain.





Say hello to my little 7-speed Nexus friend. Just the sort of hub I can run a sensible front ring with on the Leo.

It is too bad about the rim, as these are really nicely polished. They're also 700C instead of 650B though, so the only loss is if I ever want to build a match for the front for another project.



Crankset is mildly interesting for my 1980 Raleigh Sports build, but still doesn't have the right look. Definitely out of character for Leo too. Pedals will go to the Birdy BD-1.



It didn't take long to turn this thing into a frameset.

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Old 11-10-19, 02:31 PM
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Good news and meh news:

The good news is that the existing Electra 700C's and the rather fat factory tires fit really well under the fork, which means that I can invest in a replacement rear rim and throw this thing together a lot quicker than I initially expected. I can always re-lace it to 650B later on (preferably when parts drop into my lap, dirt cheap).

Even the brake reach of the Electra's no-name Tektro-ripoff dual pivots fit, if I choose to go this route. Since this thing is a bastardization of braze-ons in the first place, I don't see why not.



The rear triangle is slightly tighter, but it's workable:




The bad news is nothing really new to me - between the kickstand dents and a few other things, I knew this bike had been given the Hick with a Huffy somewhere along the line, but I'm really surprised CyclArt went ahead and green lighted the chroming and painting of this thing.

It was probably one of those "OK, if you're going to throw money at us and ignore the warnings, fine by us" deals, because I can't see anyone looking at that dropout and giving this ***** show a thumbs up.



Unsurprisingly, the wheel does not even come close to sitting straight, even though the blades are straight and true. Thankfully, there's still enough material there to grind out a bit more of the dropouts to get everything sitting correctly again.

And then there's the butchery - which I've been aware about since day #1 - on the fork crown. This thing has been drilled for recessed brakes, and even the front hole has been gouged into an oval (for god's sake, why? Save for the last 5 years, this move would limit brake options to the Tektro 556).


^
Pushing the brake to the far right edge of the hole,


^
Pushing the brake to the far left edge of the hole,



^
The rear hole isn't anywhere near center either.

I'm probably going to grind out the holes until they're centered and then stick a stainless insert or suitable sized roll pin through the crown.



Left chainstay is also tweaked backwards. Easy fix. with my Park tool, but still, makes you wonder what life this thing once had.

-Kurt
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Old 11-10-19, 08:57 PM
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FYI: If anyone has a steel Italian headset that has a 1960's look to it - perhaps knurled or a bit more antique looking than the usual 1970's fare - I'd be interested.


Alternately, I was considering removing the frosted-on lettering from Velo-Orange's polished, needle bearing Grand Cru. It's an English threaded headset, but it should interchange.



The finish should complement those headlugs nicely.


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Old 11-15-19, 07:12 PM
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Contacted the LBS. They couldn't find the rim at the Electra site. Called Electra...they only have complete wheels (due to Trek restricting their # of product SKU's, production runs, or something - the reason wasn't entirely clear and didn't matter), but they were kind enough to let me know that the rim is a Stars Circle (stars-rim.com) J18SCA.

Stars listed as the J18SC on their site, so the A may be the polished variant for Electra:
Bicycle rim - STARS CIRCLE

It is impossible to find this rim, and it's not on AliExpress either.

I considered digging up another Electra wheel, but in the course of my call, I realized that these are 32h rims. For some reason, I never counted them and had assumed they were 36h. Well, Velo-Orange has had their 32h 650B Diagonales on sale for ages, and they have a 20% offer running until the 17th. Just under $160 for a pair of rims and the gorgeous Grand Cru quill.

Back to the original plan. It's a shame my spare 1946 Sturmey Dynohub (which is 32h) has an 85mm OLN distance, but given how much crap has been done to this fork, perhaps cold-setting the blades from 100mm wouldn't be asking too much. What do you think?

Decided to use this headset too. Bit cheaper than the Grand Cru, and no ugly lettering:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/1-22-2mm-Al....c100752.m1982

-Kurt
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Old 11-15-19, 07:42 PM
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Mmmmmmm.... suddenly craving tacos!

Originally Posted by cudak888


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Old 11-15-19, 08:01 PM
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Originally Posted by francophile
Mmmmmmm.... suddenly craving tacos!
Don't forget your internal pasta geared hub (imported by Benotto).



-Kurt
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Old 11-20-19, 08:21 PM
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Just FYI, if anyone missed my ISO post, I'm looking for the following stainless spokes:
  • 270mm (x32)
  • 277mm (x16)
  • 252mm (x16)
In other news, some shiny bits from Velo Orange arrived today:



-Kurt
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Old 11-21-19, 07:52 PM
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A couple of steps forward, one neutral, and one back.

First off, I straightened out that kink in the chainstay and mocked the frame up tonight with the headset that came in the mail (more on that piece of absolute shyte later). And yes, this is looking goooood. Very goooood.



Velo Orange deserves some kind of award for bringing a stem to the 21st century that looks like this. This is Noble Prize winning stuff here. Dare I say it looks better than a Titan? Well, maybe I won't go that far, but this stem deserves all the praise and more.



Now, about that headset...

This thing came from eBay, and was advertised as an "alloy" sealed bearing headset. It's a fair argument to say that the "alloy" is Kleenex and banana peels. Everything except the split crown race and the washers feel like chromed plastic, and the sealed bearing sound like they're rubbing against chromed plastic when they bottom out.

More importantly, neither cup is tight enough to fit properly in the frame (they live on the absolute edge of "falling out entirely"), and the split crown race - which the seller did not state the size of - is 27.2mm. As a result, it doesn't tighten up on anything JIS, much less the Bottecchia's 26.4mm race, and not even knurling a JIS race with my JA Stein tool did much good. It's crap.






While I'm on the ugly, here's some beauty shots of the hack job someone did on that fork crown brake mounting hole:





As I said before, I've got a few ways to fix this, so I'm not particularly concerned.

-Kurt
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Old 11-24-19, 09:43 PM
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I spread the frame to 130 (more like 128mm) tonight using a Park alignment gauge and the precision of my exceptionally neolithic grasp on the chainstays.

Every time I throw this thing in a stand, I am reminded that this frame seems to have a really low BB. The angle of the chainstays is really quite something to see - and just slightly alarming. It's definitely more drop than my '82 Superior.

This may unintentionally render Leo as a surprisingly good platform for a city bicycle, but it has me worried from the 650B point of things.





The Nexus hub looks pretty good back there. Unfortunately, the cable stop on the hub and the one on the frame are too close and too far offset to fit a piece of housing between them. Oh well.






-Kurt
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Old 11-29-19, 05:13 PM
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I can't recall the last time I read about repairing an English Dynohub in a thread about an Italian bike trying to be a French bike, but here we go:

I won a lot of three Dynohubs - in various states of disrepair - off eBay for tinkering. I didn't want to use my scratched up '46 hub, and there was enough to make a good '58 Dynohub of the lot.



This is what remains. A shell with a damaged flange, my old '46 GH6 after some tinkering (and minus fixing bolts) and a '52 hub with 36h drilling which would be OK, but someone cut the terminal studs off (WTF?)



In the process of mixing and matching the best bits, I finally laid to rest something that I couldn't figure out 14 years ago:

A. I figured out that someone had needlessly put a Sturmey AW lockwasher on the left side of the '46 hub. This confused the hell out of when I was a noob and trying to figure out how to adjust the earlier hub. Sturmey-Archer's grammatical geniuses did not exactly make the process clear in the service manual.



...and B. This hub's adjustment mystified me for years, as the four-prong washer on the Dyno side (the one that doubles as the cone adjuster) never bottomed out against the Bakelite without bottoming out against the cone adjuster first. As a result the Bakelite center armature was never quite secure from spinning about.

It took me until this very minute to connect enough dots to confirm what I suspected about the drive side of these earlier Bakelite Dynohubs: There's supposed to be a washer behind the adjuster with the four notches. My '46 Dynohub never had it. The parts you see below are correct, but incomplete: There's a larger washer that's missing from this equation, and it's supposed to go on before the notched washer/adjuster:



It's only by the grace of reading the manual for the FG hub last night (for an unrelated problem) that I now realize a washer is supposed to be there in the first place. Since the Dynofour retained left-hand hub adjustment through it's entire run - unlike the GH6 - the FG's manual reflects both the four notch cone adjuster and a washer below it.

All of this came to light as I was writing this post - so I had a quick look into my own reference photos. A few years ago, I snapped this photo of a friend's 1948 Raleigh Super Sport and it's early Dyno. There's obviously a conventional washer below the notched washer. Mystery solved.



-Kurt
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Old 11-30-19, 12:21 AM
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Incidentally - and I'm putting this here so I don't lose it in my bookmarks - I'm also gathering inspiration from this Rene Herse for the build. It pulls off the long-stem look with that bar design perfectly.

https://vintagebicycle.wordpress.com...tion/dsc_1644/




-Kurt
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Old 11-30-19, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by bikemig
Heck I would have bought that bike for the head badge. Nice score.

If I had a bike shop like that near me, I'd be broke by now,
and a divorce 😂
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Old 11-30-19, 10:08 AM
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Quite an epic saga there! I enjoyed reading the thread. (Does that make me weird?)
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Old 11-30-19, 11:20 AM
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That's a real shame for the front brake mounting hole. You have to wonder 'why' and 'how'?
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Old 11-30-19, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by John E
Quite an epic saga there! I enjoyed reading the thread. (Does that make me weird?)
There's more to come. The spokes arrive on Monday, @rhm is sending me a junk 650x42b for me to test, and @gugie is sending me one of those Compass tire gauges. I really think I won't be able to push it past 42B (filing the dropout slots round again won't help), but I'm surely going to try.

Add me to the list of weirdos: I absolutely love reading through multi-page build threads. The Jack Taylor and Rene Herse tandems come to mind. I don't always post in these threads, but I get great enjoyment from reading the sagas. It helps me to keep going with my own builds too.

Originally Posted by Boxkite
That's a real shame for the front brake mounting hole. You have to wonder 'why' and 'how'?
Someone probably drilled the rear off-center for recessed brakes, then thought they could "fix" it in front. I'm even more curious about the bizarre dropout file job. The fork isn't bent, but the way it's been filed absolutely guarantees that nothing will ever sit right in it (now, anyway).

I'm doubly shocked that CyclArt agreed to chrome and paint it with these flaws though. Triple shocked as this thing had to visit a framebuilder first to get the braze-ons put on it - couldn't they have fixed the crown and dropouts?!

-Kurt
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Old 11-30-19, 06:54 PM
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Most of the time i do not have a clue what you are talking about, but i am sure enjoying this thread.
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Old 11-30-19, 07:45 PM
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Originally Posted by garryg
Most of the time i do not have a clue what you are talking about, but i am sure enjoying this thread.


You are always welcome to ask for clarification, no matter how silly the question may seem

-Kurt
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