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Campagnolo's Second Golden Age? (Best generation of Ergopower?)

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Campagnolo's Second Golden Age? (Best generation of Ergopower?)

Old 08-06-11, 05:51 PM
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visigoth
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Campagnolo's Second Golden Age? (Best generation of Ergopower?)

At the risk of starting a holy war, I'd love to hear opinions about the various Campagnolo Ergopower generations, from the first 8-speed to the current 352-speed. In particular, is there a period where they were especially well-made: beautiful and bomb-proof?

(Clearly there are strong opinions about Campagnolo pre-indexed parts; I'm wondering if the Ergopower age has produced any classics yet.)
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Old 08-06-11, 05:54 PM
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I was raised on Campag friction gear, and remember discussing minutiae concerning Record and Nuovo Record parts from various years. Ergo is new to me. My only experience is second-generation 8-speed stuff (1998), from near the bottom of the line (Mirage, Avanti) -- and I'm impressed. Wondering whether I should climb the 8-speed ladder, working my way up to perhaps Chorus, or start investing in a later generation. Or whether I should just stick with what I have. (Seems 8-speed Mirage has a bit of a cult following?)
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Old 08-06-11, 05:55 PM
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I think you'll find a lot of love around here for 8 and 9 speed.

I'm lacking in information about these modern expensive technologies save for riding a Record 8-speed setup and thinking it was one of the best things ever. I'd love to be able to put one of these groups on my bike.
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Old 08-06-11, 06:18 PM
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I had to have the '96 Record Titanium 8 speed gruppo - when I could afford the set. It works well and looks good.



I fitted a later model Campy Ti seatpost though.
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Old 08-06-11, 07:31 PM
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Well I've ridden gen 1 8 sp ergo, the ti 8 sp ergo, 9 sp record, 10 sp record and 11 sp SR. I'm not as wild about 9 sp or the later 8 sp. They get smoother with each successive improvement, and they're much more durable than sti in my experience. For function, 11 sp ergo is just heavenly. It disappears and is effortless...best thing I've used. The most attractive, IMO, is first gen 8sp without graphics and 9 sp. 9 sp also had the awesome ti seatpost.
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Old 08-06-11, 07:44 PM
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You guys just gave me an idea. I can keep my eyes open for an 8- or 9-speed group and buy it when the price is crazy low. I'm in no hurry, and I'm sure it will be better than whatever I've got.

My long term keeper bike has had Nuovo Record on it since 1984, so I'm hardly spoiled, but I still love me some Campy. I have a couple of 9-speed Shimano drivetrains, and they're nice, but I'm not impressed with the durability.
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Old 08-06-11, 07:45 PM
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Ahem, Aaron.I was looking at your revised signature, and I don't believe you've ever posted pictures of the ultra rare Look KG292, have you?
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Old 08-06-11, 07:48 PM
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I did...it's look, look
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Old 08-06-11, 07:59 PM
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I am a late comer to Campy, but catching on very quickly.

I have 9 speed Chorus on my Hollands, and yes, I do have the ti seatpost. Very nice.

From there, I have 10 speed Chorus on my Tommasini Sintesi.

I have 2009 Centaur on several bikes, a Chris Kvale, my wife's De Rosa, and a Merckx Century. In each case I added in a little Record for kicks.

I am putting a grey 2004 Centaur gruppo on my Walter Croll project, which will be finished this winter.

Three weeks ago I picked up another nearly new 10 speed Chorus gruppo. The owner was dumping it so she could upgrade to 11 speed Super Record.

So I guess this makes me crazy about Campy, and a real fan of the more modern 9 and 10 speed systems, especially Chorus.

So much performance and reliability for the money, as well as value.

Can't go wrong folks.
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Old 08-06-11, 08:08 PM
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I think everything up to the 11 speed re-design is fantastic. I just can't get past the ugliness of the 11 speed levers. Don't care if they work, don't care if they are comfortable. All the 10 speed stuff up till then does and is and looks great. If I wanted ugly I'd go Shimano or SRAM.
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Old 08-06-11, 08:16 PM
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Yes, hideous
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Old 08-06-11, 08:53 PM
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Absolutely love these levers:

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Old 08-06-11, 09:02 PM
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post


Yes, hideous
Yup. Even worse with the white hoods.
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Old 08-06-11, 09:09 PM
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Wasted energy peanut.
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Old 08-06-11, 09:11 PM
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post


Wasted energy peanut.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VzPsdkTCufs
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Old 08-06-11, 09:12 PM
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Back to School was the better movie
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Old 08-06-11, 10:42 PM
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I think the AL brifters feel better and give better feedback then the carbon. I ride both weekly and the AL brifters are tops in my book. Plus, is there anything better looking then polished campy AL?

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Old 08-06-11, 11:03 PM
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I must confess I have real problems with certain aesthetic decisions made by Campag in the age of indexing. The wacky shifter typography hyping "CARBON"! and "9 SPEED"! strikes me as very much a step in the wrong direction. For some time it in fact made the high end-groups look cheaper than the lower-tier stuff (which avoided this). My Avanti levers -- with the exception of the plastic paddles (hate that) -- do in fact look better than Chorus and Record from the same period.

I wish the nice people at Campagnolo took the advice of this website, where a guy has Photoshopped together a modern gruppo based on the polished/engraved C-Record aesthetic: http://ruedatropical.com/2009/01/bri...shed-c-record/

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Old 08-06-11, 11:04 PM
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All this to say -- in answer to the rhetorical question, "is there anything better looking then polished campy AL?" -- no.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:33 AM
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I have 8, 9, and 10 Sp. I think the 8 and 9 look better, but appreciate all three. The thing I hate the most is that I can't use interchangeable wheel sets due to the 8 sp thingy.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:40 AM
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Originally Posted by noglider View Post
You guys just gave me an idea. I can keep my eyes open for an 8- or 9-speed group and buy it when the price is crazy low.
When is that? I've been looking.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:41 AM
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I actually like the curve of 11. If you judge it for what it is, I think it's beautiful . I agree that aluminum 8 and 9 (especially first gen 8) look best, but 11 feels best in my hand. F
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Old 08-07-11, 08:43 AM
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
If you judge it for what it is, I think it's beautiful .
I think you used the wrong pronoun there.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
Back to School was the better movie
That was the first movie I was in. Probably the greatest movie ever made.
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Old 08-07-11, 08:59 AM
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Yes, at times in modern days Campy has succumbed to the temptation of marketing hype, and it is disappointing, but at least they haven't added exclamation points (RECORD!!). I grew up in the days of Nuovo Record, and it was more like "this is what we have, the European racing community loves it, we think it's right for them, and if you Yank kids like it too for rides along Lake Michigan, we'll sell you what the peleton doesn't buy."

My wife's Terry (1996 Classic, made by Wilier) has a lower/mid 8 x 3 setup from 1996, and it works and looks beautifully. NOS Record and Record TI cassettes seem to be available, but at surprisingly high prices and with a minimal range of gearings. If you won't be happy with a 13-23 or a 14-26, you'll probably not be happy with that system. It's been suggested to me that Harris might be selling customs, but at least recently they are not selling any 8-speed, and 9-speed cassettes don't fit.

I'm using a mixed gruppo of pre-QS 10-speed on my Mondonico, an aluminum Record 53/39 mated to alternatively a 13-29 or a 13-26. The narrower range shifts better (flawlessly!) with a standard-reach rear mech. I'm going to a Record triple (aluminum, late 90s I think) crank with the Comp derailleur and a wide-range Veloce rear mech, and I think I'll stay with the 13-26 on that.

I haven't had a road STI in the family, save a 2x10 flat-bar road setup on Mrs. Road Fan's now-departed Cannondale Road Warrior flat-bar roadie. It worked well for a few years, then I had to fight with the front mech to keep it working smoothly, about once every three rides.

I'd consider the aluminum-handle and the carbon Record systems classics. I'm reconvinced about Campy value and durability. Is 11 in my future? Show me a conversion kit for cheap enough and I'll tell you ... Mr. Mondonico always likes better shifting bits, and thinks that black accents on his silver frame is not a bad look.
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