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I want a chrome bike. Suggestions

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I want a chrome bike. Suggestions

Old 09-02-10, 11:13 PM
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RFC
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I want a chrome bike. Suggestions

I am very happy with my little C&V collection. And, I don't want to take it to the point that I am accumulating for the sake of . . . accumulating. So, I have been thinking about something different. Vintage carbon is on the list and so is chrome.

What suggestions do you have for a chrome bike? What I might I be paying for a frame? I have everything else. I have to say the smoked chrome Austro-Daimler is very attractive.

As always, photos are appreciated.

Cheers

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Old 09-02-10, 11:21 PM
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A chrome voyageur 11.8 would be your best bet for something solid and inexpensive. They aren't the lightest bikes around but they ride smoothly. You will have to do some work to fit long reach dual pivot brakes if you switch the 27's out for 700c.

Here was mine, I sold it because it was too big.

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Old 09-02-10, 11:23 PM
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That would've been my suggestion. As for more, obviously a Paramount.
You could also go a little more eclectic and get a bike painted in the cromovelato style (thin lacquer over chrome).
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Old 09-02-10, 11:32 PM
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Try this as a decent starting point for a nice build ...

2011 Mercier Kilo TT (Special Chrome Edition) $390
https://www.bikesdirect.com/products/...ial_chrome.htm


Last edited by FlatSix911; 02-13-11 at 02:32 PM.
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Old 09-02-10, 11:47 PM
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I'm sure you've seen those fancy Italian bikes with chromed fork and seat stays. Some of them were actually all chrome then painted. I had a Bianchi that was this way. I got the frame cheap because the finish was badly chipped. I touched it up, but first thought about stripping the paint away to reveal a beautiful chromed frame.
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Old 09-02-10, 11:53 PM
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55/Rad's Pinarello is one of the nicest I've seen. After getting a big scratch in the paint on my Pinarello, I thought I'd go for a similar treatment, but alas mine was sanded prior to painting, so kinda scratched up. Sometimes I wonder if the sanding marks are fine enough to buff out.

Here's 55's, though:
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Old 09-03-10, 12:05 AM
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Yeah, stripping the paint off a chromed frame could be a good way to do it.
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Old 09-03-10, 12:20 AM
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except that most fully-chromed frames that were painted (cromovelato or flamboyant or whatever) don't have fully smooth chrome under the paint: it's usually textured so the paint has a little "tooth" to grab onto. And that tooth is often under the chrome plating so it isn't anything you can "buff smooth".
In addition to those mentioned, there were a couple Raleighs (one was a USA model, one was UK and only offered for a year or two: 1975?), also a Fuji that had full-chrome-under-paint, maybe a Panasonic (who probably also built the Schwinns) and a Lotus...wish my memory was better as far as the exact model names, but folks who know will chime in.
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Old 09-03-10, 12:40 AM
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Originally Posted by mazdaspeed View Post
Yeah, stripping the paint off a chromed frame could be a good way to do it.
This is how I found my chrome frame, It was hiding under a bad am team's paint job.
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Old 09-03-10, 01:26 AM
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I know my friends Raleigh I think it's a late 70's or early 80's has chrome on the bottom half of the front fork. So I would assume the whole fork is?
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Old 09-03-10, 02:37 AM
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I wouldn't automatically assume that. Many chromed forks are chromed part way up the steerer tube, so you can pull the fork and if you see some chrome up there, then you're probably in business.
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Old 09-03-10, 03:46 AM
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55/Rad's ride came to mind. One of the prettiest chromed bikes I've seen.
You can also chrome an existing non-chromed frame/fork. Including aluminum.
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Old 09-03-10, 04:00 AM
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I've longed for a chrome Paramount, but my longing has been tempered by Sheldon Brown's comment that the chromed Paramount frames are more prone to failure than the painted frames. I've speculated that it might have something to do with heating the frame during the application process, but I don't really know.

Was Sheldon right?
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Old 09-03-10, 04:25 AM
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Originally Posted by ClydesterD View Post
I've longed for a chrome Paramount, but my longing has been tempered by Sheldon Brown's comment that the chromed Paramount frames are more prone to failure than the painted frames. I've speculated that it might have something to do with heating the frame during the application process, but I don't really know.

Was Sheldon right?
Interesting question. Many of the chrome Paramounts were apparently built by Don Mainland out of his shop in Wisconsin, and are generally built to a bit higher standard than those from Chicago. I certainly wouldn't personally be deterred from buying a chrome paramount by failure fears - I know lots of folks who have owned them (myself included), and don't know of any tales of woe associated with them.
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Old 09-03-10, 05:03 AM
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I have owned several old Torpados and a few were complete chrome. A fellow in eastern Canada commissioned me to build one up for him, in accordance with his specifications. The bike turned out great and he has contacted me a few times to comment on how much he likes it.



At the moment, I have one of these old bikes in The Old Shed, as well as an all chrome Italian Chiorda. There might even be an all chrome Maino out there but the chrome has been cosmetically challenged.
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Old 09-03-10, 05:39 AM
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I don't care for the regular silver chrome bikes, but I do like the colored chromes, especially smoke or deep red. I have a Schwinn Sierra that was called Black Chrome.
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Old 09-03-10, 05:39 AM
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Have one of your existing bikes chrome plated. Do your own prep work. The metal surfaces must be free from any roughness because the plating is very thin.

https://www.qualitychromeplating.com/bicycles.php
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Old 09-03-10, 08:26 AM
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I think Sheldon's comment about chrome plated Paramounts being more prone to failure than the painted version is based more on the fact that chrome plated frames generally have to be oven baked after plating to eliminate or minimize the possibility of hydrogen embrittlement resulting from the plating process. Schwinn began chrome plating Paramount frames in 1938, and had the plating process - including post plating baking - down to a science. I don't believe there is any statistical data to support the contention that chrome plated Paramounts are any more prone to failure than the painted frames.

I agree with mazdaspeed that the chromed version of the Voyageur 11.8 would also be an excellent choice.

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Old 09-03-10, 09:00 AM
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The mid 80's Raleigh Racing USA Grand Prix's were full chrome under the paint. Usually found reasonably priced. Somewhere there is a thread with a pic of one stripped of paint.
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Old 09-03-10, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by RFC View Post
I have to say the smoked chrome Austro-Daimler is very attractive.
Right there in the initial post. A thousand times YES!
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Old 09-03-10, 09:12 AM
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Isn't pulling the factory paint off an all-chrome bike a little like a drew?
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Old 09-03-10, 09:26 AM
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Another 11.8 pic. Unfortunately was just too big for me


(click to embiggen)
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Old 09-03-10, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Scooper View Post
I think Sheldon's comment about chrome plated Paramounts being more prone to failure than the painted version is based more on the fact that chrome plated frames generally have to be oven baked after plating to eliminate or minimize the possibility of hydrogen embrittlement resulting from the plating process. Schwinn began chrome plating Paramount frames in 1938, and had the plating process - including post plating baking - down to a science. I don't believe there is any statistical data to support the contention that chrome plated Paramounts are any more prone to failure than the painted frames.
Further to that, has anyone here ever seen a failed chrome Paramount? Not me.


Originally Posted by khatfull View Post
Isn't pulling the factory paint off an all-chrome bike a little like a drew?
I did it on an '84 SC once, though the paint had flaked so badly that the previous owner had fist-sized touchups on it.

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Old 09-03-10, 09:48 AM
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I'd love to see that bike Kurt, if you've got pictures.
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Old 09-03-10, 09:51 AM
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Here is mine right after I bought it. I have no idea what it is, but I think its mid to late 80s and Japanese. I rides really nice. Shimano 600 shifters and derailleurs. Came with Suntour Superb Pro hubs laced to Mavic rims.
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