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Lightweight Vintage Road Bike?

Old 12-07-08, 12:56 PM
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Lightweight Vintage Road Bike?

So my brother came in town this week and we rented him a road bike so he could come out with me and of course now he has the itch to get a road bike for himself. Only thing is, he doesn't want a modern bike he wants a vintage European road bike, BUT, he want it to be about as light as the Masi road bike that we rented (around 20 pounds). I made another thread in the Roadie forum about this and I got some suggestions to check out Bianchi and Peugeot (also recommended were Olmo and Ciocc but I can't seem to find those on ebay or craigslist). What I would like to know now is if there are any particular models I should be checking out from Bianchi or Peugeot or any other brands that I should be looking for. The few Bianchis that I have inquired about have been 22-25 pounds, the Peugeots have been 25-30 pounds, 22 would be acceptable for the Bianchi but is there any lighter Bianchi models out there that I can still get for a decent price? Is there any Peugeots that weigh around 20 pounds? Any other vintage bikes that you guys can recommend that won't cost too much? Oh, and he would like the frame to be made in Europe too. All of this research about vintage bikes has made me want to get one too lol, I'm checking out the Bianchis as well as the Dave Scott Centurions for myself. Anyway, thanks for any advice you can offer
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Old 12-07-08, 01:23 PM
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What do you classify as "Too much"? There's a lot of variables here, and a lot of different brands to consider. You're looking in the sub-20lb range for a vintage bikes is not gonna net you anything cheap, atleast anything cheap that doesn't need a lot of work and potentially even more money. The lightest I've ever seen a derailleur-driven vintage bike is in the 17lb range, and even that is rare. 20 is gonna be hard. It's gonna have to be alloy everywhere, with tubular tires, and a fully butted Reynolds 531 frame(at "lowest"). And not knowing how tall your friend is also is a factor, as larger frames are also heavier.
There's not much I can help you with aside from this. Maybe the rest of the gang here can help.
-Gene-
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Old 12-07-08, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Amani576
What do you classify as "Too much"? There's a lot of variables here, and a lot of different brands to consider. You're looking in the sub-20lb range for a vintage bikes is not gonna net you anything cheap, atleast anything cheap that doesn't need a lot of work and potentially even more money. The lightest I've ever seen a derailleur-driven vintage bike is in the 17lb range, and even that is rare. 20 is gonna be hard. It's gonna have to be alloy everywhere, with tubular tires, and a fully butted Reynolds 531 frame(at "lowest"). And not knowing how tall your friend is also is a factor, as larger frames are also heavier.
There's not much I can help you with aside from this. Maybe the rest of the gang here can help.
-Gene-
no that was very helpful thanks, i think my brother will be ok with spending around 500, personally i don't want to spend more than a couple hundred but i don't need something that light since i've already got a CF bike and would mainly be using the vintage bike for short commutes, my brother rides a 56cm frame
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Old 12-07-08, 01:32 PM
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One word. Vitus Aluminum.




okay. two words.
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Old 12-07-08, 01:35 PM
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I've got my eyes on a Bianchi Campione D' Italia for myself, seller says it's around 22 pounds
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Old 12-07-08, 01:52 PM
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Can't always trust what the seller says it weighs, but 22 pounds is pretty realistic goal for a vintage machine. I got my 1976 Sekine (which weighed at least 30 pounds stock) down to 22 pounds right now using almost all period vintage parts save the fork which is carbon with a steel steer tube. With a lower spoke count tubular wheel set it could be 21 and a half. I could get really carried away and get it under 20, but Its gotta look good and vintage, y'know!
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Old 12-07-08, 02:10 PM
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I have a Vitus Super 980 '84 Peugeot PSV10 that spec'd in around 21 pounds for a 52-54 cm frame and a '84 Super Vitus 983 Gitane Tour de France with tubular wheels and alloy freewheel that's right now around 20.5 lbs and spec'd at 21.8 for a 54 cm. You can find the lighter weight ones but you may pay a little more. I don't need it much lighter than that. I always keep an eye out for an Olmo but they are expensive when you can find the 80's vintage (the era I like) - the last one on Craigslist I saw was listed at $850.
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Old 12-07-08, 02:13 PM
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I think my Coppi was 19 or 20 lbs when I bought it in the early 80's, but that was when it had tubular rims and a Cinelli Unicanitor seat. I have clinchers on it now, and a Selle Anatomica seat, so it's definitely a few pounds heavier. Not that I care in the slightest.
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Old 12-07-08, 02:40 PM
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Bikes to consider that are slightly heavier than 20lbs... but "affordable":

This Raleigh Competition on eBay is very, very nice -- Raleigh's top of the line:



There is a nice Raleigh International on Ebay right now. These bikes have really superb chrome-lugged construction with chrome chain stays and front forks -- the lugs on this bike rival any out there. This particular bike seems to need some TLC in the paint department, but it is constructed from Reynolds 531 steel alloy. It would not fall precisely in your brother's weight requirements, but is a bike worth considering. Recently a few Internationals have shown up on ebay in very nice condition.

If budget is at all an issue, and your brother can be open-minded, there were some sweet Japanese bikes made in the 1980's, some marketed by Schwinn even, that feature chro-moly construction and very nice lugged construction: the chrome Super Le Tour 12.2 (26.89lbs) and Voyageur 11.8 (26.01 lbs) come to mind.

All in all, circa 25lbs is very, very doable.



The chrome Schwinn Voyageur 11.8:


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Old 12-07-08, 02:54 PM
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sub 20lb during the 80's was INSANE. Average on all my bikes was about 21 which included my lightest Vitus 46cm (okay, its not steel) with (at the time, very lightweight compared to Campy NR) Shimano 105grouppo, Ambrosia sewups and Clement silks.
What weighted bikes a lot back then were freewheels, wheels, and bb/cranks. Those parts today are so much lighter.
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Old 12-07-08, 02:59 PM
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My Gazelle Champion Mondial (531c) with a full Ultegra setup comes in at 22lbs. That's with the original steel fork too. So yeah 22lbs is quite doable, but anything under that will take some work if you're going full steel.
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Old 12-16-08, 11:17 AM
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Ok, I found an 86 Raleigh Technium 400 on Craigslist that looks like it's in great condition, the seller says it weighs around 18-19 pounds, he is asking 225 and I talked him down to 200, good deal or no?

Oh and this is for myself not my brother, still trying to find him a Euro bike, but the advice here has been very helpful

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Old 12-16-08, 11:40 AM
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Rather than looking into brands look into the tubing its made of. Light compoents are relatively inexpensive and easy to find.

Columubus SL or SLX
Reynolds 531SL or Pro
Tange Prestige
Super Vitus 980
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Old 12-16-08, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by miamijim
Rather than looking into brands look into the tubing its made of. Light compoents are relatively inexpensive and easy to find.

Columubus SL or SLX
Reynolds 531SL or Pro
Tange Prestige
Super Vitus 980
+1 .... three of my bikes are in the 20.5-22.0 range, two of which are Reynolds 531, one of which is Columbus Aelle. They're built up with '82 Dura Ace, '72 Nuovo Record, and '80 Shimano 600, so the componentry (at least at a certain quality level) doesn't seem to make that much difference. I haven't weighed wheelsets to quantify the difference between tubular and clincher wheelsets, but tubulars are noticably lighter. Replacing a vintage saddle with one of the newer 175g wisps will make a difference, too.

That said, for me the difference between a 20 pound bike and a 25 pound bike is the difference between 225 and 230 total weight ... so for me at least, I don't think that it's weight as much as quality. A 21 pound top-of-the-line race machine from 1980 will absolutely kick the stuffing out of whatever $800 will buy you in a new entry-level aluminum road bike. It'll feel quicker, more responsive, smoother, etc.
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Old 12-16-08, 01:01 PM
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If I am not mistaken I think that the geometry of the frame effects how fast it is as much if not more than the weight. Not to mention the abilities of the rider to make it go fast and what not. The Bianchi is a great choice.
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Old 12-16-08, 01:35 PM
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I personally would not believe any seller's estimate of weight. The first question I would have is how did you weigh it? And is the weight of the bike in ready to ride condition (seat, pedals, etc.)?

If you want light weight, it is cheaper to shed a couple of pounds from the rider (at least in my case).

And I would rather have a sweet vintage Japanese bike at 22 1/2 pounds (equipped as I ride it), than spend the added $$ to save two more pounds.

FWIW, I weighed my 05 Trek 1000 (aluminum frame) versus my 84 Lotus Classique (Tange 1 Steel frame), and there is only 1/2 pound difference between the two (both equipped and ready to ride). My Lotus cost me $16, I think I'll keep it.....

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Old 12-16-08, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Tariq08
I've got my eyes on a Bianchi Campione D' Italia for myself, seller says it's around 22 pounds
That's about what mine weighs -- 10kg. From the mid-1960s through the mid-1980s almost all of the mid-to-high-end bikes weighed 10 or 10.5 kg. With a full butted moly steel frame, period-correct aluminum components, and a tensioned leather saddle, it is tough to get much below 23lbs. Unless one is racing, there is also no real urgency to do so -- my Bianchi is light enough for all "normal" purposes, including riding and hanging from my garage rafters.
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Old 12-16-08, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by triplebutted
sub 20lb during the 80's was INSANE. ...
I concur. The lightest bike I saw in the early 1970s was A D Stump's gorgeous black chrome hand-built custom, which weighed in at 19lbs, partly because of the small frame size. Back then, that was a radically low weight for a road bike, although a few track bikes were even a bit lighter than that.
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Old 12-16-08, 02:09 PM
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I really have no idea how some of the vintage bikes on here are in the 22lb area. I ride a 62ish cm frame but have a hard time believeing that 2.5 lbs can be attributed to the frame, but maybe it can be. I have a 1981 Gazelle Champion Mondial AA frame with full 531 and a super record group (SL pedals, record bottom bracket. Record 32H hubs laced to Campy Omega tubs with bladed spokes, Cinelli 1R stem and criterium bars and a concor saddle. It`s almost 24.5lbs... Heavy, and that is with a 1R stem. There are tons of bikes like this one out there and they all weigh in pretty hefty. To get a steel frame AND fork down to 20lbs you will have to do some custom stuff. Definitely tubulars, 28 spoke would be ideal and then start going weight weenie. You`ll need a huret Jubillee RD, modolo chronos brake levers and Modolo CF DT shifters... an alloy rail vintage plastic saddle (or a modern one). You can investigate lighter cranks, get a phil wood BB, some Mavic components were prettly light too I believe.. etc etc... This can be costly because these are the parts that were raced and worn out, there is far more campy out there than the super light components (weyless, airlite etc..)..
I would settle for 23lbs as a good weight for a vintage bike, if he wants it to be around 20lbs you will be able to do it for a similar price to a new bike... for example cannondale`s Caad 9 six full alloy frame made in the USA for about $1000 bucks or move up to 105 equipped Caad 9 five for $1500, both good deals... To get a 20lbs vintage you may have to be willing to spend that much. Alloy and titanium freewheels are absurdly expensive and don`t last as long, they should be reserved for racing or infrequent riding unless one is made of money.
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Old 12-16-08, 02:30 PM
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So your brother-in-law wants a 20 pound lugged European frame for not much money?

I think we'd all like to find that elusive bike, wouldn't we?

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Old 12-16-08, 02:34 PM
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My '72 Fuji Finest is a little over that, and my '70 Raleigh Pro is right there too. My '84 Trek 760 is under that. They are 56, 58 and 54 cm frames respectively.

Good luck trying to find one of those - although if you could find the Fuji or Trek, they might cost less than $500.00. But they're not European.
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Old 12-16-08, 05:09 PM
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Originally Posted by miamijim
Rather than looking into brands look into the tubing its made of. Light compoents are relatively inexpensive and easy to find.

Columubus SL or SLX
Reynolds 531SL or Pro
Tange Prestige
Super Vitus 980

This makes a lot of sense.

I have two rather light steel bikes. One is a very diminutive and flexy Masi Gran Criterium from San Marco, late 1980. It weighs 21 pounds, and does not have the tubing specified. I believe this means it was a mix. My Mondonico in 52 cm is a 1985, rather stiff Columbus SL, and also weighs 20.5. Buying a similar Masi will cost $1200 to $2400 (my guess), a similar Mondo will be somewhat less, but both will be hard to find. Ciocc frames appear on Ebay fairly often, one just closed a few days ago. Any of these older high-end Columbus frames should build up to teh 21 to 22.5 pound range.

What I'd really recommend is a late-60s to early '70s Peugeot PX-10E, a decent one should come in certainly below $1000 (but I don't really know, so please don't quote me or flame me!!!). That will in stock condition weight in the 21.5 to 22.5 range, depending on modernization and frame size. To get that low weight, you probably have to have tubular wheels as original. Not to claim that clinchers can't be as light, but I'm assuming "vintage" means "all vintage." BTW, my Mondonico is not all vintage.

These bikes will not easily get into the modern sub-19# range that one commonly sees in more $$ carbon, but so what? They will fly. And most modern studies (I'm hoping someone who knows is willing to jump in on this!) on bicycle performance say that aero effects dominate weight effects above 13 mph or so. The difference between these older race-based bikes and a modern bike in most group rides will have more to do with the rider than the bike.

I need to lose >30#. There is a lot more lard on me than on my 21# bike.

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Old 12-16-08, 05:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Tariq08
Ok, I found an 86 Raleigh Technium 400 on Craigslist that looks like it's in great condition, the seller says it weighs around 18-19 pounds, he is asking 225 and I talked him down to 200, good deal or no?

Oh and this is for myself not my brother, still trying to find him a Euro bike, but the advice here has been very helpful
I'd expect it's a good deal, but I do not believe that weight. I really only believe weights if i can see the bike and the scale.

Did it have pedals? Many bike adverts (most?) do not have pedals today.
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Old 12-16-08, 05:19 PM
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I think I'm going to make a purchase today..

I really can't lose anymore weight myself, i'm 5'11" 155, i fluctuate a little more and a little less, but 5 more pounds off is out of the question

The reason I want a lighter bike for myself is that I had a 25 pound hybrid and I hated it, I have a 16 pound CF bike right now and I really enjoy riding it, most of that is probably components/design/materials ect, but I think the weight plays a role too.

Personally I don't care if it's European, the De Rosas, Colnagos and Olmos are just too expensive, the Peugeots are too heavy for me unless their the PX10 or whatever and those are too expensive. And there's not much out here for the other brands that I'm interested in like Trek, Bianchi and Fuji. Unfortunately I need to make a purchase soon, as I am in dire need of a commuter bike, and I don't want to make a purchase on ebay because I just don't know enough about vintage bikes to be able to eyeball it.


So here's what I'm looking at

The 86 Raleigh Technium 400 which is in great shape and weighs less than 20 pounds (I can probably bring it down even more if I can put an Ultegra group on it)

There's also a Bianchi Brava that just got posted on craigslist, I haven't even inquired about it yet, maybe you guys can tell me something about the quality?

There's a Bianchi Eros available too, unfortunately it's Magenta/Black/Purple, but you know what screw it I'll ride it if you guys think it's a good choice, looks like it's in good condition too.


I have about an hour before I'm going to make a decision, any last minute advice?
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Old 12-16-08, 05:23 PM
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Here is the Raleigh, Eros and Brava, my only concern with the Eros is that it might be too small, I ride a 56-58 but I don't know this one looks a little small for me, seller says he doesn't know the size but it's over 54, maybe it's a 55?





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