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Baby Colnago Super project (circa 1974)

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Baby Colnago Super project (circa 1974)

Old 07-01-12, 12:14 PM
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I'm off to pick up some frame-working supplies: Jasco stripper, Scotch-Brite pads and some new sanding sponges. I will be playing about with both the Guerciotti and Colnago frames (it's crappy out today), mainly removing the last paint remaining.

Andycapp deserves a big thank-you for the 3+ hours he spent getting these frames where they are. All the paint is gone from the hard-to-reach areas and all that remains is readily-accessible stuff the stripper should take care of. Chrome came off very well; in the case of the Guerciotti, it was 90% gone already

I got in on the fun, too - the process appealed to my meticulous nature

So, I'll have some detailed pics of a naked frame this evening. For now, Andy's couple of shots above will have to suffice.

Andy: many, many thanks - and am I ever glad I brought three pairs of shoes for test-fitting, and even happier that two of the three fit! You definitely deserved your "pay"!

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Old 07-01-12, 01:41 PM
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As a suggestion for future blasting projects, blasting goes 90% faster is the frame is attacked first with a spray-on stripper and a wire brush. The stripping application does not need to be neat or tidy, or even particularly thorough.

The stripper will easily remove the vast majority of the finish and the paint that is left behind has lost some of it's bond and becomes brittle which makes it easier to remove by blasting. Allow the remaining paint on the frame to dry before blasting. I know this sounds like twice the work, but overall the job goes much faster using the combination of techniques.
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Old 07-01-12, 07:46 PM
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Another long day of stripping, sanding and just a little filing. Once I had the remaining paint removed, she gave up a couple secrets: where there was a tiny top tube ding, a PO must have dinged her another time back in the day - there is already a brass repair in this area. There is another brass-filled ding on the underside of the down tube just above the BB shell.

I also note two small bumps on the seat and down tubes - just above the BB shell in both cases. If this is damage, I wonder how one does that?

In any case, the frame is down to steel and brass. Time to show some pics before cleaning up some filing (most notably some chain-rub on the inside of the driveside rear DO) and then taking this down to Elliott Bay Bicycles to straighten the bumped areas.

Head lugs and crown:



Clovers:



Rear DOs:



Brake bridge:




Driveside BB shell:



Non-drive BB shell:



Top tube ding and old brass repair:




Old down tube brass repair:



Underside of fork crown:



Fork tips:



DD
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Old 07-01-12, 08:25 PM
  #54  
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Originally Posted by Picchio Special View Post
Where? I can't find that info? I don't see why '73 isn't plausible.
The fork details are interesting - holes in the fork tang but not in the sides of the crown points.
There is (was? I printed my copy a couple years ago) a Colnago Timeline regarding the Super on the CR list. It's suggested that the last year for clover cut outs in all three lugs was 1973. Since this one only has the one, I am betting it's no older than '74.

My 56cm - also pegged at around 1974 - also has the exact same features as this frame, right down to the two holes in the fork tang but no holes in the sides of the crown points. I like the fact that these frames are almost identical except for size; my niece will be riding a smaller clone of her "favorite uncle's" Colnago

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Old 07-02-12, 08:57 AM
  #55  
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Originally Posted by Drillium Dude View Post
Another long day of stripping, sanding and just a little filing. Once I had the remaining paint removed, she gave up a couple secrets: where there was a tiny top tube ding, a PO must have dinged her another time back in the day - there is already a brass repair in this area. There is another brass-filled ding on the underside of the down tube just above the BB shell.

I also note two small bumps on the seat and down tubes - just above the BB shell in both cases. If this is damage, I wonder how one does that?

In any case, the frame is down to steel and brass. Time to show some pics before cleaning up some filing (most notably some chain-rub on the inside of the driveside rear DO) and then taking this down to Elliott Bay Bicycles to straighten the bumped areas.

DD
Thanks for sharing. An example as to why resprays get discounted, none of these things are fatal, but the newer paint cloaks the truth.
By the way, I think the frame is 1974 too.
I recently bought a '72 for my kids and it also only has the down tube Colnago cutout on the primary lugs.
As you are taking it to Elliot Bay, do have them check the alignment, especially for head tube twist and lateral offset.
The "bulge" at the bottom bracket tubes could well be the effects of big heat during brazing, I have seen this before, more often at the seat lug.
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Old 07-02-12, 12:49 PM
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^ I appreciate the feedback regarding the bulge in the seat tube at the BB shell - it's not detectable (to me) by eye, but I could feel it as I worked the tubing after the paint strip.

I'll specifically point this and the known-existing issues on the top tube out when Ryan takes this on at EBB. Once back out the doors there I am certain she'll be 100% straight and true

Looks like I may be able to pick up most of a period-correct decal set on Ebay. A seller is currently offering a boatload of different versions from early to late 70s and he's got numerous sets of each, including various colors. Timely!

DD
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Old 07-02-12, 01:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Drillium Dude View Post
There is (was? I printed my copy a couple years ago) a Colnago Timeline regarding the Super on the CR list. It's suggested that the last year for clover cut outs in all three lugs was 1973. Since this one only has the one, I am betting it's no older than '74.

My 56cm - also pegged at around 1974 - also has the exact same features as this frame, right down to the two holes in the fork tang but no holes in the sides of the crown points. I like the fact that these frames are almost identical except for size; my niece will be riding a smaller clone of her "favorite uncle's" Colnago

DD
The latest timeline - Chuck Schmidt's of several years ago - says '72 was the last year for cutouts in all 3 lugs. It's posted at 43 bikes. The Colnago page at 43bikes also has two side-by-side electric blue Supers at the top of the page, both identified as '73, one of which has cutouts in all three lugs and one of which does not. I have a strong sense that your frame(s) could well be '73.
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Old 07-02-12, 01:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Drillium Dude View Post
^ I appreciate the feedback regarding the bulge in the seat tube at the BB shell - it's not detectable (to me) by eye, but I could feel it as I worked the tubing after the paint strip.

I'll specifically point this and the known-existing issues on the top tube out when Ryan takes this on at EBB. Once back out the doors there I am certain she'll be 100% straight and true

Looks like I may be able to pick up most of a period-correct decal set on Ebay. A seller is currently offering a boatload of different versions from early to late 70s and he's got numerous sets of each, including various colors. Timely!

DD
I saw those transfers on ebay, Italian seller, correct? If so, have Elliot Bay look at them online. Some of what the Italian seller is offering has had the duplex side removed already. Given the age and storage variables, they may be risky to apply successfully, maybe not. If I was getting two for the price of one I would be a bit less concerned, but have a back up plan lined up.
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Old 07-02-12, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Picchio Special View Post
The latest timeline - Chuck Schmidt's of several years ago - says '72 was the last year for cutouts in all 3 lugs. It's posted at 43 bikes. The Colnago page at 43bikes also has two side-by-side electric blue Supers at the top of the page, both identified as '73, one of which has cutouts in all three lugs and one of which does not. I have a strong sense that your frame(s) could well be '73.
Bikes back in those days did not really have "model years" that one can translate to bikes. The timeline is helpful, but exceptions keep popping up.
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Old 07-02-12, 02:03 PM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
Bikes back in those days did not really have "model years" that one can translate to bikes. The timeline is helpful, but exceptions keep popping up.
I've even owned a few. All the more reason to believe the bike could be pre'74.
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Old 07-02-12, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by repechage View Post
I saw those transfers on ebay, Italian seller, correct? If so, have Elliot Bay look at them online. Some of what the Italian seller is offering has had the duplex side removed already. Given the age and storage variables, they may be risky to apply successfully, maybe not. If I was getting two for the price of one I would be a bit less concerned, but have a back up plan lined up.
Yes, we're talking about the same seller - and I did note the duplex side missing. I will have to keep that in mind; Bob at EBB had the correct set last go-around, so I'll be hoping he can do the same if the Italian seller's wares aren't up to snuff.

DD
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Old 07-02-12, 02:27 PM
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That frame looks great! Is there a good way to clear-coat or wax them to keep that "bare" look, or do you pretty much need to repaint if you plan to keep riding them?
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Old 07-02-12, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
That frame looks great! Is there a good way to clear-coat or wax them to keep that "bare" look, or do you pretty much need to repaint if you plan to keep riding them?
Thank you! A bit more detail work (and correcting the little bumps) and she'll be ready for paint.

I had made the tongue-firmly-in-cheek "I wish I could leave this bare-metal" comment to Andy while we were blasting, and of course he pointed out that once just a little moisture got underneath the clear, major surface rust wouldn't be far behind. This is one of the reasons not many chromovelato finishes have lasted without looking like crap (if they've been ridden). That finish is basically a pigmented-clear sprayed over chrome; Wiliers are notorious for rust blooms under their chromovelato finishes, for example.

Would it look awesome, though? It sure would - but think about one other thing: you'd have to get the frame pretty much spotless in all areas, and that would take a ton of work and then some

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Old 07-02-12, 06:05 PM
  #64  
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Originally Posted by Snydermann View Post
As a suggestion for future blasting projects, blasting goes 90% faster is the frame is attacked first with a spray-on stripper and a wire brush. The stripping application does not need to be neat or tidy, or even particularly thorough.

The stripper will easily remove the vast majority of the finish and the paint that is left behind has lost some of it's bond and becomes brittle which makes it easier to remove by blasting. Allow the remaining paint on the frame to dry before blasting. I know this sounds like twice the work, but overall the job goes much faster using the combination of techniques.
This is great advice - I am completing the stripping on the Guerciotti and I can tell that if I were to let it dry and then stick it into the blasting booth this stuff would be all gone in minutes.

Live and learn, huh? That's why I love this forum. Next time

DD
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Old 07-04-12, 02:49 AM
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Got some metal-work done on the frame this afternoon/evening after confirming with Bob at EBB that I will be bringing this and the Guerciotti down for the repair/re-braze work. They will also be doing the paint/decals on this after I've completed all the metal preparation (save the welt roll/repair).

I cleaned up the chain scrapes on the inside of the driveside rear DO and removed a spot of excess brazing material in the head lug clover cutout. Other than that, there's just a little cleaning I'd like to do with the three main lugs and the BB shell cutout. Then, it's up to the pros at EBB to lay down the perfect paint job

Pics of my progress tomorrow - I'm sleepy, and Sacha's already warmed up the bed.

Happy Fourth!

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Old 07-04-12, 03:33 PM
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Since I'll be dropping off the Colnago for paint and the Guerciotti only for some metal work, I decided to concentrate on final preparation of the Colnago today.

I mostly confined my efforts to clean-up filing - and removal of the non-original chain peg. Some lugs had tiny nicks - or, being pressed lugs, perhaps imperfections that were not completely removed during production at Colnago

Anyhow, here's a pic of some filing in progress - note the small nick in the upper tang:




And here it is afterwards:



The following lug pics are "after" shots.

Lower head lug:




Seat lug side view - note pin at top of seatstay cap:



Underside of upper head lug:



Oh, and I decided to do a little finish-filing of the BB shell clover cutout, too.

Clover in-progress:



Next up: cleaning up the chain-damaged driveside rear dropout. I started off with a flat bastard file and ended with some of my finish files.

Before:



During:



Complete. Note up on the driveside seatstay that the chain peg has been removed and the site filed and smoothed:



That's all for this update!

DD
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Old 07-04-12, 06:36 PM
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Fork tang file marks have been seen to - frame is basically ready for drop-off at EBB Saturday.

Before:



After:



That's it - I have put away my files for the day

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Old 07-04-12, 06:38 PM
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NICE WORK D. Dude.
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Old 07-04-12, 08:33 PM
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^ Thanks, Scott - I'm going to be a little sad in a couple/three days when this and the Guerc are out of my hands for a week or so (in the case of the Guerc).

The Colnago will be down there a month or more. Well, that's okay - I've had my prep-fun and I'll still have parts to prepare, some customer drillium to finish and...

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Old 07-04-12, 11:39 PM
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Originally Posted by ThermionicScott View Post
That frame looks great! Is there a good way to clear-coat or wax them to keep that "bare" look, or do you pretty much need to repaint if you plan to keep riding them?
Automotive clear coats and clear powder coat will definitely develop surface rust after a while. I've tried both powder and auto urethane myself and both failed. Clear lacquer was even worse. Rivendell tried clear powder coat a couple of years ago. One sold on eBay a couple weeks ago and you can clearly see the surface oxidation in the listing photos.

The alloy used in different frames makes a huge difference in how fast the oxidation shows up, but they all do it eventually.

Epoxy reportedly seals well enough to prevent oxidation according to the marine metal gurus, but I don't have the right spray equipment or experience to try it.

Tom
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Old 07-05-12, 08:08 AM
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Your work with the finish files always looks great, DD.

It's also interesting to note how much more attention to detail went into this one than the Guerciotti. I'm sure they'll both look great with paint on, but this one is so much cleaner in bare metal.

Reminds me of how sloppy my Atala looked in bare metal -- that's the charm, right?
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Old 07-05-12, 08:14 AM
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Well done, Dude!
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Old 07-05-12, 09:28 AM
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DD, those are great before & after shots of the filing. I love following your build threads!
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Old 07-05-12, 12:52 PM
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Originally Posted by MrEss View Post
It's also interesting to note how much more attention to detail went into this one than the Guerciotti. I'm sure they'll both look great with paint on, but this one is so much cleaner in bare metal.

Reminds me of how sloppy my Atala looked in bare metal -- that's the charm, right?
Thanks for your nice comments

There is definitely a difference in finish - but I think part of that is the way the Guerc has tiny pitting all over from surface rust over the years. There are one or two glaring differences in finish (on the Guerc, I'm thinking the lugs were thinned too much and there's a mismatch in the stay buttress reinforcements). Overall, I guess the Guerc gives a worse impression because it's seen harder times.

Also recall this is the second-time-around for the Colnago - it had been taken down to bare metal and repainted before. Finally the Guerc is getting some love after all these years

I did an Atala once and it was very, very nicely built - wish I had pics of when it was down to bare metal. mikemowbz owns that frame now. Even a budget $250 paint job looked outstanding on that frame!

DD
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Old 07-05-12, 12:54 PM
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Originally Posted by ColonelJLloyd View Post
Well done, Dude!
Thanks Justin - it's been fun setting aside drilling holes in things for a week or so while playing with these frames

DD
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