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Willies Bike Shop, Mike's frame shop, and saving a time trial bike. 60+ pics!

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Willies Bike Shop, Mike's frame shop, and saving a time trial bike. 60+ pics!

Old 07-06-19, 08:15 PM
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Willie's Bike Shop, Mike's frame shop, and saving a funny bike. 60+ pics!

This is a continuation thread of 1960's Bottechia (a.k.a. "Tell me about Leo")
The Raleigh Professional Mk.IV shown here has a spinoff thread.

Sometimes, you do walk into heaven on earth.



I was off for the long weekend yesterday, and dropped by Willies' Bicycles, one of the small local shops. It's run by Willie Arias, who was one of the USA Cycling team mechanics back in the 1980's I got my '82 Schwinn Superior from him 10 years ago. Back then, he was known as a great place to get lugged frames.

Well, he still is.

I posted on Friday about the 1960's Bottecchia that I found at the shop, and I came back there today to work out a deal - and also to snap a photo story of the shop.












Despite being a tiny place - the wide angle lens makes it look a lot bigger than it is - this place is crammed with C&V stuff - from the greatest to the roughest.









There are a lot of Raleigh Internationals kicking around here. A LOT.



Hitting the picture cap, more pics in the next post...
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Old 07-06-19, 08:35 PM
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Starting with the first row - Austro-Daimler Super Lecht, Bottechia Special, some seen-one-you've-seen-them-all Cannondale, and a restored Merckx:




One of the more eccentric things at this shop are the number of frames that have been chromed. Apparently, there was a local fellow who'd do this at a price that beat repainting. I don't necessarily agree with that, but...is what it is.

At the left, a Benotto Modolo 5000 aero. At center, another Raleigh International or Competition - didn't check the stays close enough. Capella lugs seem to be a thing around here. At right, a Benotto mixte city bike.





The Modolo 5000:








An unknown brand funny bike. No markings, internal TT routing. There's something very wrong with it though...and it becomes part of this story later on. To its right, one of the Schwinn aluminum number-series frames.




Don't look now, but there is a grail bike with a flying bird on it here, and its missing its psychedelic feathers. Zunow. Tried to get this one, but passed on it as Willie has a very interested buyer in it (who wouldn't be trading), and it's too small for me.





Remember when I said this shop has some sort of Raleigh International fetish? This one had been repainted sometime in its life as it had water bottle bosses added to the downtube. Rough paint, but surprisingly excellent prep and finish on the Nervex Pro lugs; much better than what one sees on most factory Internationals. I suspect someone filed them before the repaint.




A turd-brown Frejus, but you have to admit that despite its color, this is a fairly close-to-grail-bike for many. Willie says he has the original fork, but its bent. I checked the frame out, and its straight as an arrow with no wrinkles. I have a latent desire to see that fork...



More pics in post #3 ...
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Old 07-06-19, 08:47 PM
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Here's Willie and one of his mechanics (don't have his name, unfortunately) under the never ending ceiling of wheels. There are too many large flange Campy wheels there mixed with Nexus 7-speed hubs. Put simply, looking up causes fits of excitement.



New acquisition - a few-year-old Vanilla. Not sure who bought it, but it was being disassembled of it's mutt collection of parts for a future build:




Willie is one of the last of the true lugged steel mechanics. If you give him a frame to look at, he puts it in the stand, eyeballs the rear triangle, inspects the drops and seatlug ears, and runs his fingers under the top and down tubes to check for wrinkles. A checklist that all C&V'ers should take to heart and memorize before buying any old frame or bike!







The bottom line requires modern bikes to get repaired too:



More vintage steel coming up...
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Old 07-06-19, 09:03 PM
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Most of us have probably seen a loud and modern carbon fiber Orbea frame, and we might have heard about their steel frames in the 1970's. Seeing one is another matter entirely. I ticked that box today:





Yep, that's the old faux-Rossin (but really a The Duro from Belgium) hanging up - I finally parted with it as part of the trade for the 1950's/60's Bottechia frameset. He's aware that this is NOT a Rossin.




You know what the chances are of finding a shop in 2019 that has two Austro-Daimler Super Leichts in stock? Yea, got that covered.




Back of the shop is host to a few interesting frames too:






Unearthed this in the derailer stash. Also noted a clear anodized + black first-gen Cyclone hiding on a low-end Raleigh Marathon that doesn't deserve to have it:






The trade bait lined up (along with the Zunow) and the Bottecchia in the stand, getting stripped to frame and fork.




But what's this? Sacrilege!



The plot thickens...
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Old 07-06-19, 09:04 PM
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Great pics and story. This is a very cool shop.
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Old 07-06-19, 09:20 PM
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The haul, plus one - I got the Bottecchia, of course, but I took pity on the Professional Mk.IV and made my bid to cover it with my lot and some cash. It worked. In the center is the funny bike, and you'll see its predicament in a minute:




Those are some tweaked seat stays. I offered to give it a try straightening them for Willie, especially as I haven't had a chance to put my recently-acquired Park SS-1 stay straightener to work:




In the meantime, a friend dropped by to tempt me with this thing again...only he had to put on some first-gen C-Record on it.



Yep, that's an Italian-made smoked cromovelato Benotto, and he's been dangling this carrot in front of my nose for eight years now. It's gorgeous. He also has a Gios...and they're both too expensive for me (unless I sell that Caterpillar front main seal installer I've got on EvilBay...in which case, I'm getting that Gios, and a friend has dibs on the Benotto).




The haul of today from Willie's - and the upcoming chapter in the day at Mike Terraferma's, coming up:



P.S.: Having my own little living room L'Eroica here...



Next up...a trip to Mike's...
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Old 07-06-19, 09:49 PM
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And so, the next chapter of today's whirlwind: Weeks (probably months) ago, I worked out a trade with @wedgeSG - his '70s Carlton Kermesse for that red 1980's Romani in my previous post.

I had picked up the Romani as part of the deal I had to strike to get the first of my two Raleigh Pro Mk.IVs (the one right behind the Romani in the garlic bread pics), and I got screwed on this one pretty good. Don't get me wrong, this is a fantastic frame, but A: It has zero snob appeal...which is bloody painful, because this is basically a Colnago Super minus the Prugnats, wearing the contract builder's name instead...and B: It's under a terrible, horrible, drippy red paint job which is so thin in one spot that you can see the steel surface reflecting through the paint.

The big problem was that it was repainted with a top tube braze-on missing. Who makes these kinds of bonehead mistakes? It didn't matter though - John (WedgeSG) plans to repaint this guy and give it the love it deserves.

Since we didn't have a matching third braze-on, Mike and I did exactly what you'd expect to see on a Colnago Super of the same time period - two braze-ons. We re-positioned the center braze-on to the rear, as the front one was already pretty far back. Floppy Colnago cable management for the win..






We also tried out a new tool I acquired - a J.A. Stein crown race knurler/expander. Works like a charm. Every bike mechanic working with steel bikes should have one of these.




The Romani, looking a little burnt. Probably not the first time.




One of the Romani's fork blades was also tweaked rearwards, so this required a trip to the Park fork straightening tool and Campagnolo dropout alignment tools so graciously given to me by one of the other LBS'es (No Boundaries). I did have to borrow Mike's Park FFS-1/FFS-2 to complete the job though...I really need one. That's a big hint, folks.

(P.S.: Forgive the mess in the background, but I have been attacking my various messes throughout the house, and this one has not been addressed due to rain constantly blowing into this area and ruining everything in sight. Finally got the OK to close up the entire patio with clear Lexan on the outside, but Lexan isn't cheap. Getting panels in a workable size without overpaying is very, very difficult as well.




I've done more than a few forks in the past, but I'll say it right now: The dropout alignment tools are absolutely and 100% invaluable. You need them. Period.



Next up...the funny bike.
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Old 07-06-19, 10:01 PM
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The final chapter tonight - straightening the funny bike. Did it look straight in the earlier pics?

Yep, looks can be deceiving...if you take the picture at the right angle. Speaking of which, I really need to clean the grease marks off of that Chair of Despair.




Yea...not so good. Time for the Park stay straightener. (Incidentally, those are aluminum angles in the vise to prevent damage to the BB. A must have).




But thanks to the mighty Park SS-1, this thing looks straight again! This is the first time I've used the SS-1, and I'm blown away how fabulous it is. The chrome is actually handling most of this pretty well. It's cracked a bit, but I'm just glad it hasn't fallen off in a gazillion chunks.



Now, the only downside is that I do NOT have the Park F-A-G-2 Frame Alignment Gauge, and right now, the rear brake bridge isn't happy - I'm pretty sure the chainstays are cocked to the left. Guess I'll have to rely on the string test this time.

That's all for now; I left the TT bike as-is, and will pick up all of this tomorrow, including die-grinding the headtube out of a Raleigh Twenty (Why? Well, you'll just have to stick around).

-Kurt
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Old 07-07-19, 03:34 AM
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Great thread!
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Old 07-07-19, 06:28 AM
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Jeez, what is it the Park A$S-2?

Yes, fun thread.
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Old 07-07-19, 06:55 AM
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Originally Posted by jethin View Post
Jeez, what is it the Park A$S-2?

Yes, fun thread.
I'll admit, some of their vintage tool names are questionable, starting with the Frame Alignment Gauge.

The FFS-1/2 is this:



-Kurt
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Old 07-07-19, 07:16 AM
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Wow!

Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
Sometimes, you do walk into heaven on earth.



I was off for the long weekend yesterday, and dropped by Willies' Bicycles, one of the small local shops. It's run by Willie Arias, who was one of the USA Cycling team mechanics back in the 1980's I got my '82 Schwinn Superior from him 10 years ago. Back then, he was known as a great place to get lugged frames.

Well, he still is.

I posted on Friday about the 1960's Bottecchia that I found at the shop, and I came back there today to work out a deal - and also to snap a photo story of the shop.












Despite being a tiny place - the wide angle lens makes it look a lot bigger than it is - this place is crammed with C&V stuff - from the greatest to the roughest.









There are a lot of Raleigh Internationals kicking around here. A LOT.



Hitting the picture cap, more pics in the next post...
Wow this place is a heaven on earth for us living C&V !
Way to go Willy !
What is the address and contact info, website? for this shop?
Would be a great reason to visit S.FL

Willies Bike Shop

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Old 07-07-19, 07:23 AM
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Originally Posted by joesch View Post
Wow this place is a heaven on earth for us living C&V !
Way to go Willy !
What is the address and contact info, website? for this shop?
Would be a great reason to visit S.FL

Willies Bike Shop

7915 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33138. The Google results for Willie's Bicycles is more comprehensive than the website.

-Kurt
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Old 07-07-19, 07:57 AM
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url and phone number

Id love to put that Red Super on he road

Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
7915 Biscayne Blvd, Miami, FL 33138. The Google results for Willie's Bicycles is more comprehensive than the website.

-Kurt
Willie's Bicycles shop website is Contact - Willie's Bicycles

7915 Biscayne Blvd
Miami, Florida 33138
786 325 3830
Open Monday-Saturday 9:30 AM – 5:30 PM

Hope this helps brings some more visitors and classic rides to the roads

Last edited by joesch; 07-07-19 at 08:00 AM. Reason: wish
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Old 07-07-19, 08:01 AM
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Originally Posted by joesch View Post
Id love to put that Red Super on he road


Willie's Bicycles shop website is Contact - Willie's Bicycles

7915 Biscayne Blvd
Miami, Florida 33138
786 325 3830
Open Monday-Saturday 9:30 AM 5:30 PM

Hope this helps brings some more visitors and classic rides to the roads
For $2,500, you can - told you he wasn't cheap.

-Kurt
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Old 07-07-19, 08:45 AM
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Originally Posted by cudak888 View Post
For $2,500, you can - told you he wasn't cheap.

-Kurt
Yes and it probably includes a service and maintenance plan from one of the best living legend steel bike mechanics.
Such a deal
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Old 07-07-19, 09:34 AM
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Originally Posted by joesch View Post
Yes and it probably includes a service and maintenance plan from one of the best living legend steel bike mechanics.
Such a deal
It might...give him a call

-Kurt
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Old 07-11-19, 08:15 PM
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Quick update on the funny bike. I got my Park frame alignment gauge today, and sure enough, the rear triangle was off about 3/4" on the drive side:



A bit of work on the chainstays fixed that, but even after that, the rear brake bridge remained kinked to the left a good 5mm - and the stays seemed straight. Bending the stays opposite to this started to visibly bend the stays too far to the right, so I started to scrutinize the seatpost.

That's when I looked past the huge dent and the really terrible work at the bottom bracket. See it yet?




Someone probably tried to bend the BB with way too much heat when this thing was built, and shoved it together with no real regard. Maybe the cheap chrome job also encouraged some hydrogen embrittlement. Whatever crash bent it the stats probably cracked the seattube long ago, and I didn't notice until now:





Thankfully, not my frame - straightening the stays was a favor. The overall workmanship on this frame is a mixed bag, and the El Cheapo Chrome Job doesn't help it.

TBH though, if someone were to chemically strip the chrome around the BB, I bet the cracks could be drilled at the end and the whole mess filleted back together. But at that rate, I think it'd be easier to build another funnybike.



#NotMyWallArt

-Kurt
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