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Mystery Italian frame from Zumwalt's Bikes in San Diego - any info?

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Mystery Italian frame from Zumwalt's Bikes in San Diego - any info?

Old 05-22-13, 10:38 AM
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Mystery Italian frame from Zumwalt's Bikes in San Diego - any info?

So i recently won a lugged road frame on eBay that's kind of a mystery. It's made of Columbus SP or SPX tubing, fully chromed, with Campagnolo dropouts. It has three stickers on it: one said "Made in Italy", another was a generic Columbus sticker that said "Tubi Rinforzati Garantiti" and finally one from Zumwalt's bikes in San Diego - https://www.zumwaltsbikes.com/



the lack of any logos leads me to believe that this was a "house brand" of Zumwalt's. In terms of the fork crown, lugs, and paint it looks identical to Italvegas that i've seen online:



Can anyone confirm that Zumwalt's sold unmarked Italvegas as their house brand? And can anyone tell me which model of Italvega I have?

btw, i stripped the paint, shined the chrome, and built it up. here's what it looks like now:

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Old 05-22-13, 10:59 AM
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Based on the Columbus decal, long dropouts and lack of braze-ons it's definitely not SLX. The only option for that era (mid-1970s or earlier) would be Columbus SL or SP. Based on the frame size SP would be very unlikely.

Analysis by another forum member indicates that the Torresini built Univega used a plain four digit serial number circa 1970-1974 and a six digit serial numbers thereafter. It's my understanding that Italvega had several models using the same basic Columbus frame but different components, so it's not possible to say exactly which model it was.

Edit: Just to make sure it is SL you should confirm a 27.2mm seat post and the presence of five spiral ridges inside the bottom of the fork's steerer tube.
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Old 05-22-13, 11:34 AM
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i figured it was SP or SPX, as it has the columbus bird stamping and the number code 0-7-1. that seems to match the listing here: https://www.equusbicycle.com/bike/col...umbuschart.htm

Seatpost size is 27.0. I'll have to check the fork tonight.
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Old 05-22-13, 11:45 AM
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Interesting, SP does use a 27.0mm post and 0.7/1.0 wall thickness, but normally is only used on large frames, with most builders transitioning around 58-60cm. It's atypical to find it on a frame that small.
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Old 05-22-13, 11:57 AM
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Back, during the boom, Bicycling magazine used to carry an LBS directory that many of the better shops subscribed to and used to list the brands they carried. I had a quick look through a sample from the period, but found no mention of Zumwalt's.
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Old 05-22-13, 12:10 PM
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hmmm, that's a little surprising as it seems that Zumwalt's was around then (their website says they've been in business since the 1930's). I'm thinking about calling them but I don't know if anyone working there would know. The Italvega's date from the early to mid-70's.
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Old 05-22-13, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by T-Mar View Post
Interesting, SP does use a 27.0mm post and 0.7/1.0 wall thickness, but normally is only used on large frames, with most builders transitioning around 58-60cm. It's atypical to find it on a frame that small.
is there any known listing of the tubing types used in Italvega bikes?
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Old 05-22-13, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Catnap View Post
is there any known listing of the tubing types used in Italvega bikes?
Back then the specs typically just said Columbus tubing. That's because all Columbus offered were the SL and SP road sets and the PL and PS track sets. If you had a road bicycle it SL or SP and the transition typically occured at 58-60cm. Columbus didn't start diversifying and more sets until the very late 1970s.
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Old 05-22-13, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Catnap View Post
hmmm, that's a little surprising as it seems that Zumwalt's was around then (their website says they've been in business since the 1930's). I'm thinking about calling them but I don't know if anyone working there would know. The Italvega's date from the early to mid-70's.
Well, they don't appear appear to have been advertising in Bicycling during this period, unless they were under a different name and in a different location.
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