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Best overall bike you ever rode, bar none. One choice only.

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Best overall bike you ever rode, bar none. One choice only.

Old 11-17-21, 01:46 PM
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Best Overall


Best overall, hard to say really with breaking down to type of bike, but I think I might just go with my 1986 Schwinn Paramount SLX size 58 and built with primarily 7400 Dura Ace and colored in the Emerald Green.

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Old 11-17-21, 02:36 PM
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Originally Posted by OldCoot
Maybe I misunderstood. I would think a custom bike would be more likely to make the grade. Never even heard of Marnati. Looks nice though!
I didn’t write this well.

My Marnati was custom for me, so I don’t think it’s fair to count that. It is definitely my favorite riding bike.

Marnati was a smaller shop in Milan - from father to son.
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Old 11-17-21, 02:37 PM
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Originally Posted by gomango
cool bikes, per normal.

long time no see!
Thanks GMG. Other priorities.
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Old 11-17-21, 08:55 PM
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Steel is real,

Originally Posted by jdawginsc
Not sure if this is a re-thread or something, but a conversation came up with someone about the Faggin (they said theirs was "the best overall bike they ever rode bar none"), and I thought it might be an interesting question to ask. A friend of mine from the past said the best overall bike they ever rode was an AD Ultima...that it did it all very well. They also had a Colnago, a Peugeot and a Miyata among other high end stuff.

The parameters are simple. Only one choice. Which of the bikes you have ridden did it all, and well...climbing, descending, comfortable over a long day in the saddle, responsive in corners, stiffness in and out of the saddle, maybe even able to throw on a jury-rigged bag, etc...

At this point, mine is my beloved Bella Basso (1987 Gap), but I wonder if the Faggin truly is magic?


Georgina Terry doesn’t weld anymore but if you call her , she will listen and take your measurements. She will then call a frame builder and get a custom bike welded to fit you and your style. I have two of her bikes with S&S couplers and I paid to go the. Baltic before the COVID mess. I also have a vintage Trek, the down side is the rims are 27” not 700c, steel is real.
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Old 11-17-21, 10:13 PM
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Is it the bike,... or the things you did on/with the bike that make it the best?
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Old 11-18-21, 01:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Bad Lag
Is it the bike,... or the things you did on/with the bike that make it the best?
Yes
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Old 11-19-21, 04:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Bad Lag
Is it the bike,... or the things you did on/with the bike that make it the best?
To me, it's all about the feedback: Does the bike "talk" to me when I'm riding? So yeah.., It's the bike.
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Old 10-20-22, 06:31 AM
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This is a fascinating discussion - bringing back up to the top.

I haven't had the wide-ranging experience most uses on this form have had on bikes. Never been on an Italian bike ever, so my knowledge is pretty limited. As far as standouts, my homebrew Trek 990 was an incredibly smooth riding bike, enough so that it remains my perpetual bike interest. When I first rode my PX-10, that was a revelation, and since using it on commutes, feels like it lacks nothing. Relatively light, very responsive. Then again, I just got on my Trek 750 (multitrack), a bike probably not considered in the running for the top of any list, and it was incredibly comfy...like it just wanted to float over everything. Then you pick it up, and realize it is still relatively heavy, and wonder how it does that? I could take that one on any expedition anywhere and not feel 'under-biked'.

Someone else on this thread mentioned the Trek 560, and it made sense to me that it was mentioned. I picked one up a couple months ago, and the thing is like riding on rails - it just wants to go, and go fast. It is very noticeable compared to the others I have.
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Old 10-20-22, 06:40 AM
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Maybe because it is new to me. Maybe because I wanted one for years. This FUSO would be it! It fits well, rides great. It can be geared for any situation. It’s not overly fragile. Just a great bike!
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Old 10-20-22, 06:48 AM
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My Raleigh Chopper. I could sail that baby over Stevie's pool
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Old 10-20-22, 10:21 PM
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Merckx Corsa Extra.
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Old 10-20-22, 11:54 PM
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I don't think I have a clear best ride, but the Vara '67 Dawes Double Blue continues to surprise me to the upside every time I ride it, even though I'm comparing it to some very decent bikes.

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Old 10-21-22, 12:31 AM
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...probably this Carlton. which turned out to be a Carlton Flyer from the early 70's, is my favorite all around bicycle.
I don't have any pictures of it built up. I should take some and post one later on. The Flyer is a nice riding frame.
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Old 10-21-22, 03:27 AM
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I would say my best bike was my, now sold Zunow.

Now I am going to say it is my Witcomb. I am just about finished with it, just got the decals on it, and need another ride of two to make sure the bars and brake levers are right.
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Old 10-21-22, 03:34 AM
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The overall best bike I have ever ridden is my Carrera Drago. It is light at 17.5 lbs., but has the just right stiffness. It has handling that I can only describe as telepathic. When you are riding in a pack of people, it seems that you just think about what position you want to be in and a few moments later you are there.Tubulars, a great component group, my favorite saddle-bars-stem all complete the package. I always have a good ride on on the Drago.
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Old 10-21-22, 03:44 AM
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Now if I am allowed to nuance a bit, the bike with the best * ride* that I have ever ridden is my DeRosa Nuovo Classico….I notice that this is not the only DeRosa in this thread and that is no surprise….

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Old 10-21-22, 06:04 AM
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Production - 1992 Cambridge Merlin. Whatever "it" is, that bike has IT.
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Old 10-21-22, 07:34 AM
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I sat and read through the entire thread and pondered. I've owned a Rivendell, meant to be an all-rounder-ish bike that in the end left me cold. I've got a custom Mercian Vincitore road fixed-gear that I've ridden more than any other bike. I've got assorted interesting cheap thrill finds and other bikes, including an amazing, intuitive-feeling Specialized Sirrus. But best bike overall, today, means to me the bike that everything operates perfectly, smoothly, without thought or mental effort. And oddly enough, THE bike that does that, the one that every time I push off and put my weight on the right pedal and find the left one with my other foot triggers a flash in my brain - "this bike is PERFECT" - is this battered '71 Gitane TdF fixed-gear conversion. It goes where I want it to go without hassle or drama, it's stable when I want it to be, and extremely nimble when I want that. The drive train is absolutely the very smoothest running, straight, true system I've ever had under me. There is just something that feels exactly right on this one, and I usually attribute it to Gallic geometry and metric gauge 531.

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Old 10-21-22, 07:46 AM
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2006 Cannondale Six13. Wish I still had mine.

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Old 10-21-22, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by shoota
2006 Cannondale Six13. Wish I still had mine.

Nice looking bike.

Any change to the abandoned Trek situation?

Last edited by seypat; 10-21-22 at 07:14 PM.
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Old 10-21-22, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by seypat

Any change to the abondoned Trek situation?
Ha! No, still sitting there rotting away.
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Old 10-21-22, 09:09 AM
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If my 1986 Paramount was a little smaller, in SLX instead of SL, and with my DA 7700 components instead of 7400, it might have won the prize. As it stands, however, the 1989 Cinelli takes the cup, in terms of fit, finish, ride quality and components:
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Old 10-21-22, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by smd4
If my 1986 Paramount was a little smaller, in SLX instead of SL, and with my DA 7700 components instead of 7400, it might have won the prize. As it stands, however, the 1989 Cinelli takes the cup, in terms of fit, finish, ride quality and components:
One beautiful bike!!
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Old 10-21-22, 09:55 AM
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No pics. Not a show bike at all. Spent many months outdoors and looks it. The '73 Pro Miyata I picked up last summer from a forumite. (Excellent pictures; nothing was hidden and there were no surprises save the seatpin threads stripping.)

The ride! Pure 1980s steel race bike at its best. Quick, stiff, real road feedback but not a single quirk. I've only done about 45 mph on it so far but it just gets more reassuring the faster it goes. Best steel bike I've ridden. Stiff, even with ovalized semi-aero seatstays and forkblades.

And this is obvious even though I have never given it a chance with good tires. (1980s close so only narrow tires work. I'm riding it with GEL 330s but cheap 22c cottons pumped hard enough to protect those light rims are NOT "the ride". Still the quality of the ride comes through.) Now when I get the GP4s built and 23c Veloflex on ... ! 100 psi so I may touch those rims on the pavement once or twice but they're GP4s. They won't care. And then I'll be able to trust the rubber and let this sweet ride do its thing on the hairy descents and corners. (Well, I'm almost 70. I'll never turn it fully loose because I'm not up to it. Bike certainly is.)

A Fuji Pro was my right arm for my last two racing years. Part of me and I part of it. This Miyata would have been simply better. And that's saying a lot. That Fuji was fully worthy of my trust coming down Smuggler's Notch at insane speed. I put 160+ mile days on it. And like the Fuji, this Miyata was "out of the box" fast and perfect fit. (Yes, the Miyata was built from frame up. I measured the frame and drew it on my CAD frame drawing. Frame centerlines fell exactly over my Peter Mooney. So I just set it up like the Mooney. I've been fiddling with the last 2mm of seat height, but that's it. I used to poo-poo the concept of "perfect" angles and dimensions but seeing Miyata in Japan using exactly what Peter Mooney used 4 years before in Boston for the main triangle and those being two sweet riding bikes; well let's just say my mind is opening. And when I say exactly - I had to turn off the new frame's centerline layer in the drawing to find the Mooney's; they overlaid so exactly.)
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Old 10-21-22, 01:45 PM
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Hope non-C&V bikes are OK. I've owned plenty of great top-of-the-line C&V racing bikes, all of which were brand new when I bought them, starting with my Helyett Speciale all-531 track bike in 1964. But the bike in the picture is my 2005 Specialized Langster. Aluminum (frame and fork) is real!

First year for that model, and it has a few first-year flaws, including aluminum rear fork ends, which are too soft to prevent the wheel from gradually sliding forward and letting the chain drop. (I had to add an axle retainer, which I found at the bottom of a parts drawer, the last remaining part from the Helyett, saved over all these years.)

Plus, the fork dropouts are not quite parallel, so I have to tilt the wheel a bit while tightening the axle nuts to (sort of) center the wheel at the fork crown. (I discovered that problem the first time I fixed a front flat, but procrastinated for 14 years before I got around to asking for a warranty replacement. "Sorry---three-year warranty on forks.")

But I adore the ride of the bike. Probably mostly because of the oversized frame tubes and (especially) the oversized aluminum fork blades. With no perceptible torsional flexibility, the bike tracks better than any steel bike I've ever owned.

Those flaws are still annoying, and I've considered buying a new one. Specialized added steel plates to the rear fork ends starting the year after mine was built, and it's fair to assume that they fixed the front fork dropout alignment early on, so the newer bikes should be pretty good, too. But they no longer offer the bike with an aluminum fork, I believe, and I'm afraid that the "upgraded" carbon fork will add torsional flexibility. I do have carbon forks on several of my other aluminum bikes, but those forks don't impress me much.
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