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Is Portland, OR the C&V Center of the Universe?

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Is Portland, OR the C&V Center of the Universe?

Old 09-22-19, 01:28 PM
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SurferRosa
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Is Portland, OR the C&V Center of the Universe?

I keep sending vintage Campy stuff from my local Craigs listing to Portlandia. My city of Seattle is a huge cycling community and 60 percent larger than Portland's metro pop. But the C&V culture of Portland is obviously bigger, at least according to my own sales experience the last few years.

I'm grateful folks down there are finding my stuff, but daaamn ... I wish I could sell it here in the Puget Sound at the same price point. I'm starting to see far more e-bike ugliness on our trails, rather than classics.

What's the big C&V market near you? East Coasters please chime in.

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Old 09-22-19, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by SurferRosa View Post
I keep sending vintage Campy stuff from my local Craigs listing to Portlandia. My city of Seattle is a huge cycling community and 60 percent larger than Portland's metro pop. But the C&V culture of Portland is obviously bigger, at least according to my own sales experience the last few years.

I'm grateful folks down there are finding my stuff, but daaamn ... I wish I could sell it here in the Puget Sound at the same price point. I'm starting to see far more e-bike ugliness on our trails, rather than classics.

What's the big C&V market near you? East Coasters please chime in.

I would like to think so but see very little evidence of it at street level with VC being gone, very few rides or anything else for that matter. That being said with @gugie organizing rides, working his magic on frames and much else and many of the best frame builders in the business here we have it in our DNA but not sure about the long run from here, we've been at it for a long time so hopefully we maintain what we have.

Wish we had a epicenter that presented it more readily.
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Old 09-22-19, 02:20 PM
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tbh I think Seattle is like, very understandably a big hotbed for ebikes, given the amount of bike lanes and the extremely hilly terrain on anything that isn't a MUP
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Old 09-22-19, 02:36 PM
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Fredericksburg VA is the Sahara of C&V. I am the only oasis I know of. everything is done by mail. There is a lot more going on in Baltimore and Richmond. Some in DC but not much. I feel lucky finding the Trek 610, 760 and Pinarello in the DC area but they were the exception and a lot of waiting. However, I also know of a person who is into the late 1800's and early 1900's bikes and is constantly shopping all over the east. I wish he would set up a museum in this area.
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Old 09-22-19, 02:39 PM
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I get quite a few ad responses from both Portland, and Vancouver BC.
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Old 09-22-19, 02:46 PM
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It may be that I am just tuned into the vintage vibe but when I go to my local farmers market I almost always see C&V bikes on their second or third life get used and being useful, of course I see the same when I am down in PDX wandering around. In fact I saw a well used Bridgestone road bike locked up in the Foster neighbor hood of Portland when I was visiting last month.
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Old 09-22-19, 02:52 PM
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Absolutely not. They do a good job but no.
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Old 09-22-19, 03:01 PM
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I'm pretty sure the center of the C&V universe, at least last weekend, was in Hollandale, WI at the Centenario Coppi. Perhaps it was a short-term blip on the C&V radar, but it was a stellar collection of C&V bikes and enthusiasts from all over the country. Oogling bikes, talking with friends old and new, and riding in the Driftless area was superb.
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Old 09-22-19, 03:49 PM
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I am the local C+V market! I almost never sell my stuff locally, not for trying though.
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Old 09-22-19, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Spaghetti Legs View Post
I am the local C+V market! I almost never sell my stuff locally, not for trying though.
Wait, I thought I was the center of the C&V universe!

I think New England is a strong contender: On my group ride yesterday were two Jack Taylors, a Mercian, a Hetchins, a W.B. Hurlow, a Raleigh International, and a Raleigh Competition. Well, maybe that's just the "England" part of New England.
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Old 09-22-19, 05:41 PM
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Whenever I go to Philly to visit family, I see loads of classic/vintage bikes chained up along the streets. NYC had a bunch too when I was there last.

But, based on the wild things I've seen on this forum, I'd have to speculate that Thunder Bay, Ontario's dumps are the epicenter of C&V!
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Old 09-22-19, 06:04 PM
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Boston Metro Region is the New Englander's C&V mecca. NYC being the C&V epicenter of the entire Northeast.
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Old 09-22-19, 08:46 PM
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Quite possibly, at least at some point in time. 🤔 I was in Portland for about a year, sometime back in the late-80s, and there were several bike shops fairly close together there. But I was still drinking quite heavily then, and just wasn't into bicycles at that time. 😲🤭

But I did help move the old Powell's book store into their "new" location, so saw a lot of old bikes around. 👍
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Old 09-22-19, 09:38 PM
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Can't argue with you, we spend months every year in Portland and over the river in Vancouver and while the streets are basically unfriendly compared with our winter place (4 to 8' swept bike lanes everywhere) the C&V respect and opportunity is strong even with the closing of my favorite Velo Cult.
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Old 09-22-19, 10:57 PM
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Portland isn't the C&V center of the universe, there are just a lot of people riding bikes here, and the proportion of C&V is probably not that much higher than elsewhere.

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Old 09-22-19, 11:14 PM
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As a native of the area (some years ago, non-bike involved) yet as a liver in Seattle, my inclination is to "no" though that may be out of pride or the fact that I've done plenty of sales and the only used parts shop that can rival the likes of Recycled Cycles and Bike Works is the Community Cycling Center on Alberta St. CCC is fantastic in a lot of ways, including their pricing, so they often get a visit when I'm in town.

Due to hills, e-bikes in Seattle do thrive, even if they're being ridden by able-bodied 25-year-olds or so, presumably in one of the tech industry companies that have, um, "come to the area." Maybe Seattle isn't C&V Center, but what we do have, that I am always grateful for (especially as I build nice bikes often with newer components) is that Seattle has tons of money. I'll take that as a seller!
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Old 09-23-19, 07:19 AM
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Its not just Portland, all of Oregon has a rich vein of C&V. Most recent N+1+1+1 were found in Bend (Trek 520) Hillsboro (Ironman Expert) and Grants Pass (72 Grand Record). Don
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Old 09-23-19, 07:28 AM
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As with everything numbers matter more cyclists equals more old bikes....
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Old 09-23-19, 07:29 AM
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my guess the potential supply of C&V is highest in the eastern metroplex between NoVa and New York. Just because that was the area where the bike boom really boomed. I used to work with someone from NYC who had a pristine early '70s Paramount sitting in his basement. On flat Champion du Monde silk tubulars. It's probably still there. I suspect that sort of thing is relatively common.
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Old 09-23-19, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
my guess the potential supply of C&V is highest in the eastern metroplex between NoVa and New York. Just because that was the area where the bike boom really boomed. I used to work with someone from NYC who had a pristine early '70s Paramount sitting in his basement. On flat Champion du Monde silk tubulars. It's probably still there. I suspect that sort of thing is relatively common.
It would seem logical to me that the highest concentration of European and British bikes can be found in the East, while the highest concentration of Japanese bikes can be had in the West. American classics, from Chicago and the Midwest. Surly there are pockets of bike culture in select cities of the South. Charlestown, South Carolina, and Savanna, Georgia come to mind. I could be completely wrong about all of this... I need more coffee... or a nap.
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Old 09-23-19, 08:49 AM
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I am sure there are a few "center" of the universes out there....I would rank Davis Ca. to be one of them.
It was one of the few cities in the early 70's to promote more cycling and less auto traffic.
Maybe no longer CV but certainly very bike-friendly.
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Old 09-23-19, 09:49 AM
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I'm also interested in where in the US local racing was booming back in the day. I ran into a guy who said he used to race criteriums in the 70's about 5 blocks from my house in Bethesda (now a mall). But I think there was more racing culture in CA. That's where I see more pro-level C&V bikes show up. When I see one on a local Craigslist, I'm alsways curious about its history. Like the Gi Esse junior racer with full Gipiemme tubular groupset: How did it end up in Frederick, MD? Where was it raced?
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Old 09-23-19, 09:57 AM
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I think you could convincingly argue that cycling as a "lifestyle" is stronger there than anywhere else in the US.

I lived there for 5 years and had a lot of friends into C&V bikes. Part of it was their cachet - vintage stuff in general is highly valued there, but they also made good cheap commuters.

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Old 09-23-19, 10:58 AM
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Originally Posted by jeirvine View Post
I'm also interested in where in the US local racing was booming back in the day. I ran into a guy who said he used to race criteriums in the 70's about 5 blocks from my house in Bethesda (now a mall). But I think there was more racing culture in CA. That's where I see more pro-level C&V bikes show up. When I see one on a local Craigslist, I'm alsways curious about its history. Like the Gi Esse junior racer with full Gipiemme tubular groupset: How did it end up in Frederick, MD? Where was it raced?
The East Coast and MD had lots of racing back in the '70s. And also up into New England. I don't think the distribution of bikes was really that much different between the coasts until a number of west coast builders started up. There were a lot of really nice bikes being raced in the mid-atlantic states. Mostly European.

When I started racing in Virginia in the mid-'70s, there was a very lively 24" racing scene. I forget what that class was called, they were younger than juniors. Fun to watch. Mostly Gitanes with tubular tires in my area.
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Old 09-23-19, 11:43 AM
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Thank you, @SurferRosa. I like threads like these. It makes us all look at the macro of bikes in USA.
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