Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Classic & Vintage
Reload this Page >

seeking info on Bertoni Vitus 979 bike (lugged aluminum)

Notices
Classic & Vintage This forum is to discuss the many aspects of classic and vintage bicycles, including musclebikes, lightweights, middleweights, hi-wheelers, bone-shakers, safety bikes and much more.

seeking info on Bertoni Vitus 979 bike (lugged aluminum)

Old 01-30-09, 09:48 PM
  #1  
Steel Member
Thread Starter
 
fiataccompli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,480

Bikes: N + 1

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
seeking info on Bertoni Vitus 979 bike (lugged aluminum)

I had a chance to take a look at an interesting bike that's for sale, but don't know much about these bikes/frames & what to expect (or, for that matter, what's a fair price/value). The bike is an apparently very original late 1980s Bertoni Ultraleggera, complete with original Shimano 600 components, TTT/"Bertoni" stem/bars. The bike is basically clean, apparently always owned by people who appreciated bikes & took care of it (no scratches, all stickers intact...this model is not painted, btw), and is complete less tires, tubes, pedals & saddle. The frame is Vitus 979 aluminum lugged & the fork is also Vitus 979 Aluminum. Besides anyone's impression and/or experience with these bikes (either in the Bertoni packaging or as a Vitus brand bike or whatever else...I get the impression Vitus made the frames & a number of companies packaged a bike around it at the time), I'd be interested in hearing...

1. (me) weighing in around 185 these days, should I expect frame annoyances (ie, flex) or out-and-out problems (ie, failure)...all my other road bikes are steel, as a point of reference.

2. I saw some threads about Vitus fork recalls....something to worry about with this bike? and, how can I find out more?

3. The seller has thrown out an asking price of something a bit over $400 based on the value of the complete & great condition Shimano 600 group ($200ish) + avg. value of a good quality vintage road bike frame ($225ish)...all said, that seems like a lot to me for the bike...plus the value of a bike is always less than the sum of its parts (isn't it?). Am I off base here?

It would be an interesting bike that would go well with the two other (steel) Bertoni bikes I have. But, resale-wise (which isn't my motive, but always a consideration if I'm gonna sink money into something), Bertonis don't seem to get a lot of market respect. So little, in fact, I usually see them advertised as a "vintage Italian road bike" instead of by name...which is a shame since the short lived marque apparently put together some really NICE bikes.

Sorry, no pictures of the actual bike, but here's a clip from a Bertoni catalog:


oh, and last vital detail...it's my size


btw, I don't want to hear anyone tell me the fork's bent on this bike! lol.....
fiataccompli is offline  
Old 01-30-09, 10:28 PM
  #2  
Senior Member
 
oldbobcat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Boulder County, CO
Posts: 4,312

Bikes: '80 Masi Gran Criterium, '12 Trek Madone, early '60s Frejus track

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 482 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 316 Posts
These frames were made by Vitus for numerous reputable companies, Alan being the best known. During most of his pro career Sean Kelly rode one that bore the name of his directeur sportif, DiGribaldy. DiGribaldy was obsessed with weight reduction, so this frame suited his purposes to a T.

The tubes were "screwed and glued" into the lugs. There were reports of some frames coming unglued over time, but I wouldn't worry if the bike looks and rides OK and wasn't raced.

The frame is quite light by '80s standards. The ride is considered "whippy," especially in larger sizes, but I wouldn't let that be a deterrent unless you're a dedicated masher.

The asking price seems a little optimistic but not out of line.
oldbobcat is offline  
Old 01-30-09, 10:33 PM
  #3  
Steel Member
Thread Starter
 
fiataccompli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,480

Bikes: N + 1

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
a quick Ebay perusal seems to cut the seller's estimate of the 600 group's value in about half, from what I can tell.

My size would be 54.4

Weight is a novelty. Even the sales lit I clipped from compares this bike to the (as built) Columbus SLX "Professionale" and lists the Vitus frame at 20lb vs. the Columbus at 21lb. We weighed the bike in question at the shop (remember, missing a few parts you need to ride it) at 18lb...so, that all sounds about right....again, more value in conversation than winning the TDF here....
fiataccompli is offline  
Old 01-30-09, 10:34 PM
  #4  
WJV
Junior Member
 
WJV's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Laramie, Wy
Posts: 184
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 3 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
I recently bought a Vitus 979 (in pink) and love the darn thing. I'm 6' I weigh around 165# and can definitely feel this sucker flex when I accelerate, but not in a scary way. Its got full Shimano 600 and is one of my favorite bikes to ride. The most shocking and fun part about the bike, is how light it is. With some heavy parts, I think its just a little over 20lbs. I mentioned the flex, but it seems almost like a spring with how light it is. I know its just the feel, but it seems like it accerates faster than my silly 17 pound carbon thing.

I had to make a decision to keep either the Vitus or an '88 black lightning. I kept the Vitus because I enjoyed riding it more. I do think the $400 is a little steep. I paid a little over $200 at the end of the summer but depends on market i guess.
Good luck and looking forward to pics!
WjV
WJV is offline  
Old 01-30-09, 11:13 PM
  #5  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 680
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 2 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by oldbobcat

>>>These frames were made by Vitus for numerous reputable companies, Alan being the best known.<<<

>>>The tubes were "screwed and glued" into the lugs.<<<

not to be nitpicky but french aerospace company Bador built the Vitus/Bador frames using Vitus sourced tubing & basic designwork and using CLB sourced castings for the lugs, dropouts, btm bkt, fork crown,& bridges.

AlAn was a completely separate company and very successfully produced their aluminum framesets independantly in italy several years prior to the Vitus/Badors.

the Vitus/Badors were press fit, swaged and bonded whereas the AlAn's were constructed using "threaded and bonded" (ie: "screwed and glued") construction
caterham is offline  
Likes For caterham:
Old 01-30-09, 11:14 PM
  #6  
Steel Member
Thread Starter
 
fiataccompli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,480

Bikes: N + 1

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Does the brand (Alan vs Vitus vs Bertoni) have any bearing on value?
fiataccompli is offline  
Old 01-30-09, 11:31 PM
  #7  
Senior Member
 
kpug505's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Puyallup Washington
Posts: 1,847

Bikes: Motobecane Mirage fixed gear, Nashbar Alpha Road 5000, Bianchi Grizzly, Coppi Fiorelli, , Schwinn Trike, , GT All Terra, Old Peugeot, Nishiki 3 speed, Bugatti, Cannondale Black Lightning, Dura All, Bianchi Touring, Bridgestone T700 & more

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 2 Posts
The last Vitus I sold was just a bare frame and fork. I got $200 for it (then I sold the SR seatpost for $90). If the bike is clean and damn near complete I don't think $400 is completely out of line but it is certainly more than I would like to pay......Especially with Shimano anything hangin' off of it. That's just me though. Vitus built umpteencazillion of these frames so they are not quite rare enough (yet) to pull serious change.

Originally Posted by fiataccompli
Does the brand (Alan vs Vitus vs Bertoni) have any bearing on value?
Depends....If the listing was simply stated as a Bertoni with no mention of it being built by Vitus I'd say the order of value would be:
1:Alan
2:Vitus
3:Bertoni

From my interweb researches about these types of bikes the Alans are usually praised a bit better than the Vitus and Alan built some pretty kick ass cyclocross bikes. I'm pretty sure they can take a beating.
__________________
Originally Posted by CardiacKid
We don't cotton to people who cut things off their bikes in these here parts.

Check out my bike blog!
kpug505 is offline  
Old 01-30-09, 11:47 PM
  #8  
Steel Member
Thread Starter
 
fiataccompli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,480

Bikes: N + 1

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
In my case, I'd be keeping it, riding it (along with the LOT of other bikes I have) and generally enjoying it as a rather time-capsuled bike that also is fun to take on rides periodically. Value/resale is just part of considering it for any bike that costs more than a cheap set of tires Supposedly, the guy who owns it is looking for a more relaxed (and taller) frame & wanted to keep the 600 components. For me, I think it'd be unlikely I'd want to buy the frame bare & build it back, but I could enjoy the hell out of it as the 'time capsule' ride as it is....and as long as I know that I have the option of selling it at break-even or above, I wouldn't be too worried. There's some hype involved with the presentation, so I figured this would be a good venue to get an objective POV.

That said, how 'bout riding it. My 'net searches seem to find a theme of something like 'not a great frame for someone over about 180lb' (cursory averaging here...'fuzzy math')...true?
fiataccompli is offline  
Old 01-31-09, 01:26 AM
  #9  
Senior Member
 
kpug505's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Puyallup Washington
Posts: 1,847

Bikes: Motobecane Mirage fixed gear, Nashbar Alpha Road 5000, Bianchi Grizzly, Coppi Fiorelli, , Schwinn Trike, , GT All Terra, Old Peugeot, Nishiki 3 speed, Bugatti, Cannondale Black Lightning, Dura All, Bianchi Touring, Bridgestone T700 & more

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 3 Times in 2 Posts
Caterham......Seeing that beauty is making me itch to get my wannabe Vitus whatever it is together....
I'm down to finding 1 rim, buying chainrings, a front derailleur, tires and maybe bars. Then it's build time.

To the OP: As stated previously I think you will enjoy the ride if you're not a heavy masher. The one I rode (which was 2 sizes to big) got me hooked and sent me on a quest to build my own boy racer weight weenie. That Vitus was very confidence inspiring and felt alive compared to every other aluminum bike I've ridden.....A true pleasure. And they look super cool!
__________________
Originally Posted by CardiacKid
We don't cotton to people who cut things off their bikes in these here parts.

Check out my bike blog!
kpug505 is offline  
Old 01-31-09, 07:29 AM
  #10  
Senior Member
 
mudboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Collegeville, PA
Posts: 1,352

Bikes: Ruckelshaus Randonneur, Specialized Allez (early 90's, steel), Ruckelshaus Path Bomber currently being built

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I used to have a 58cm Motobecane Prolight BITD. When I had it, I weighed about 165 but was a strong climber and sprinter. I found the 979 frame to really have a lot more flex than I wanted in a frame; I would get front derailleur rub when doing anything more than spinning at 90RPM on the flats.

So, if you're looking for a comfy bike and you're not a "masher", it might be a good bike for you. Otherwise, personally, I'd avoid it.

Pete
mudboy is offline  
Old 01-31-09, 08:46 AM
  #11  
Steel Member
Thread Starter
 
fiataccompli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,480

Bikes: N + 1

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanks. Just to be clear, I'm not "looking" for anything in particular and already have more bikes than I do sense. This was the result of a rather random conversation with a guy about my appreciation for old bikes...that led to him mentioning a friend's interesting old bike that was probably going to be for sale in favor of something more urban/commuter....and the frame construction plus the fact that I already have two other mostly non-buggered Beroni brand bikes makes it interesting. The one thing I can offer in lieu of big bucks is the guaranty that the bike will be preserved. Don't know if that carries the same weight as the hundred or two extra the owner may(?) be looking for, though.
fiataccompli is offline  
Old 01-31-09, 12:14 PM
  #12  
cycles per second
 
Gonzo Bob's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 1,930

Bikes: Early 1980's Ishiwata 022 steel sport/touring, 1986 Vitus 979, 1988 DiamondBack Apex, 1997 Softride PowerWing 700, 2001 Trek OCLV 110

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 44 Post(s)
Liked 71 Times in 48 Posts
I have a Vitus 979. Bought it in 1986 built up with full Dura-Ace. I've ridden it a lot - probably around 80,000 miles. I bet I could get only ~$200 or so for mine but then the anodizing has faded, the decals on the top tube are almost gone, and there are some scratches on the seat and chain stays and forks.

It rides nice. Quick, but not too twitchy. Kinda steep angles, though. If I remember correctly, the middle range sizes have parallel 74 degree head and seat tubes (mine's a 55). I used mine for triathlons initially (I have since bought a dedicated triathlon bike) and have used it for brevets including PBP in 2003. I've never had any issues with the frame flex but then I'm only ~160lbs and I tend to spin more than mash.
Gonzo Bob is offline  
Old 01-31-09, 02:05 PM
  #13  
Steel Member
Thread Starter
 
fiataccompli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,480

Bikes: N + 1

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
sounds like I need to lose some weight.....
fiataccompli is offline  
Old 01-31-09, 09:22 PM
  #14  
Senior Member
 
oldbobcat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Boulder County, CO
Posts: 4,312

Bikes: '80 Masi Gran Criterium, '12 Trek Madone, early '60s Frejus track

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 482 Post(s)
Liked 415 Times in 316 Posts
Originally Posted by caterham
not to be nitpicky but french aerospace company Bador built the Vitus/Bador frames using Vitus sourced tubing & basic designwork and using CLB sourced castings for the lugs, dropouts, btm bkt, fork crown,& bridges.
Thank you for setting me, and the rest of us, straight. I apologize to anyone I have mislead on this.
oldbobcat is offline  
Old 11-29-09, 06:56 PM
  #15  
Steel Member
Thread Starter
 
fiataccompli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,480

Bikes: N + 1

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
oh...sorry to dig up a defunct thread, but as an update here, I ended up with a different Vitus 979 bike and the Bertoni was sold (frame only) to a LBS where it was built up, put up for sale (for a not unreasonable price, I should note) and then stolen from the sidewalk display out front. So, in case anyone runs across a 56cm Vitus 979 bike (non-anodized tubes) with Bertoni badging and some Shimano 600 remnant components, well.....it may be this one. Truth is it was probably sold to the metal shredder for a hit of crack within hours of being swiped.......sad.
fiataccompli is offline  
Old 12-29-12, 09:11 PM
  #16  
Newbie
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 2
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Resurfaced Bertoni?

Definitely digging up a defunct thread here, fiataccompli, although is anything on the web truly defunct? In this case, as of 12/29/12, there's currently a Bertoni frame on ebay very much like the stolen one you described 11/29/09: https://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...category=98084 --56 cm, silver (non-anodized? or clear coated?), Shimano 600 headset (this frame also comes with a Sugino crankset and unnamed BB and seatpost). The frame is located in Oliver Springs, not so far from Knoxville. Of course, unless there are some specific records linking this to the stolen frame, the similarities could all be coincidental. However, having been around cycling in the Knoxville area to some degree since the 80s, I can say that there just weren't many frames like this in use in this area "back in the day." Bonded aluminum was preferred by some triathletes, but rarely used by road racers. At worst, if this were the stolen frame, we could at least be happy that it didn't end up in a crack pipe.

Originally Posted by fiataccompli
oh...sorry to dig up a defunct thread, but as an update here, I ended up with a different Vitus 979 bike and the Bertoni was sold (frame only) to a LBS where it was built up, put up for sale (for a not unreasonable price, I should note) and then stolen from the sidewalk display out front. So, in case anyone runs across a 56cm Vitus 979 bike (non-anodized tubes) with Bertoni badging and some Shimano 600 remnant components, well.....it may be this one. Truth is it was probably sold to the metal shredder for a hit of crack within hours of being swiped.......sad.
1983mercian is offline  
Old 12-30-12, 10:16 AM
  #17  
Steel Member
Thread Starter
 
fiataccompli's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Knoxville, TN
Posts: 1,480

Bikes: N + 1

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Thanks for the revival. I don't know. I passed on the link to the guy it (the one I knew of, that is, I'm not saying the auction is the same frame) was stolen from. At the time, I thought I recall hearing that someone had brought a few of those here from somewhere out west, but the one I saw was one that basically had never been ridden, so you'd expect the others would have the usual chipped decals & all that. Hmmmm...
fiataccompli is offline  
Old 12-09-23, 12:07 AM
  #18  
Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2022
Posts: 29

Bikes: To many to mention

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 11 Post(s)
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
Originally Posted by WJV
I recently bought a Vitus 979 (in pink) and love the darn thing. I'm 6' I weigh around 165# and can definitely feel this sucker flex when I accelerate, but not in a scary way. Its got full Shimano 600 and is one of my favorite bikes to ride. The most shocking and fun part about the bike, is how light it is. With some heavy parts, I think its just a little over 20lbs. I mentioned the flex, but it seems almost like a spring with how light it is. I know its just the feel, but it seems like it accerates faster than my silly 17 pound carbon thing.

I had to make a decision to keep either the Vitus or an '88 black lightning. I kept the Vitus because I enjoyed riding it more. I do think the $400 is a little steep. I paid a little over $200 at the end of the summer but depends on market i guess.
Good luck and looking forward to pics!
WjV
The thing you describe as Flexy in a good way and like a spring is what many call Plane-ing. Springy steel frames do it too.
It s a concept talked about by the late Sheldon Brown and others. Its a cool thing.
beabear444 is offline  
Old 12-09-23, 03:19 AM
  #19  
Senior Member
 
merziac's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: PDX
Posts: 13,926

Bikes: Merz x 5 + Specialized Merz Allez x 2, Strawberry/Newlands/DiNucci/Ti x3, Gordon, Fuso/Moulton x2, Bornstein, Paisley,1958-74 Paramounts x3, 3rensho, 74 Moto TC, 73-78 Raleigh Pro's x5, Marinoni x2, 1960 Cinelli SC, 1980 Bianchi SC, PX-10 X 2

Mentioned: 266 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4437 Post(s)
Liked 6,094 Times in 3,548 Posts
Originally Posted by beabear444
The thing you describe as Flexy in a good way and like a spring is what many call Plane-ing. Springy steel frames do it too.
It s a concept talked about by the late Sheldon Brown and others. Its a cool thing.
No worries but 11 year old zombie thread here, you may or may not be likely to get a response.
merziac is offline  
Old 12-09-23, 06:02 AM
  #20  
Death fork? Naaaah!!
 
top506's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: The other Maine, north of RT 2
Posts: 5,302

Bikes: Seriously downsizing.

Mentioned: 49 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 552 Post(s)
Liked 608 Times in 269 Posts
Originally Posted by beabear444
The thing you describe as Flexy in a good way and like a spring is what many call Plane-ing. Springy steel frames do it too.
It s a concept talked about by the late Sheldon Brown and others. Its a cool thing.
What is not a cool thing is the way the frame flexes laterally on fast descents, making it seem as if the front and rear wheels want to take different lines (at least on my 54cm 979). Manageable, but quite alarming when first encountered. FWIW, my Alan Record doesn't do this, I suspect due to the ovalized top tube.

Top
__________________
You know it's going to be a good day when the stem and seatpost come right out.

(looking for a picture and not seeing it? Thank the Photobucket fiasco.PM me and I'll link it up.)
top506 is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
evrythngsgngrn
Road Cycling
2
08-20-14 08:16 AM
TIKI KING7
Classic and Vintage Bicycles: Whats it Worth? Appraisals.
2
10-23-13 01:19 AM
pinch1967
Classic and Vintage Bicycles: Whats it Worth? Appraisals.
12
09-27-13 04:44 PM
BenWithers
Classic and Vintage Bicycles: Whats it Worth? Appraisals.
4
03-30-13 10:20 AM
BottleLeaf
Classic and Vintage Bicycles: Whats it Worth? Appraisals.
11
01-19-12 12:02 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service -

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.