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What is this possibly Italian JP Special Pantograph?

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What is this possibly Italian JP Special Pantograph?

Old 10-27-14, 04:23 PM
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What is this Italian(?) JP Special Pantographed Bike?

I picked up this bike from Gumtree, Australia's version of Craigslist. I really only wanted the wheels, but it turns out the frame is quite interesting.


I believe this is an Italian built frame. It has an Italian threaded Cinelli BB. I believe this is the early 80s onwards Cinelli logo type.


Now here is the JP pantograph. The J and P overlap each other, and underneath, I believe it says SPECIAL. The paint is really thick, and it is hard to tell exactly what the small worder underneath the J and P says. Any ideas who's logo this is? Tom Ritchy and Pinarello are the two similar ones, but they are different to the JP logo.


And the other main feature is this cutout on the brake bridge. Very similar, if not the same as the Pinarello clove lug cutout. Is this cutout specific to Pinarellos? Or was this available as part of a lugset? This cutout is only found on the brake bridge. The rest of the lugs dont have any cutouts.


Also Im 99% sure its been repainted, so this sticker probably doesnt provide any help.


Anyway, those are the main features I can see. It has Campag fork tips and track ends. Also should be SLX from the rifling in the steerer. I havent pulled out the BB to check the main triangle. The bike came with Shamals, Stronglight 107 cranks, a 1055 headset and front brake(definitely not original), really skinny tubed 27.2 seatpost(which I reckon is Italian), and 3ttt bars and stem. WIth so many Italian bits on it, I am led to believe it is something Italian made.

This I believe once was a proper track frame, but someone drilled holes in the DT and used some self tappers to attach the bottle cage. When I pull of the front brake, ill check if the crown has been drilled, however, this fork has lots of clearance between the tyre and crown, so it may not be the original track fork. A bit of a waste, but if I find out the frame's origins, Ill restore it back to what it should be.

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Old 10-29-14, 04:40 PM
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Small update.

I believe the word under it says ESPECIAL. quite definite there's an E before the word special, if it does say special.


It's a different seat stay design too. Looks a bit like Somec frames.






BB shell



SLX rifling in the fork as well as ST and chain stays.



Campag tips.



Interesting non symmetrical fork tip joint.



Campag track end



Better image of the cutout in the brake bridge. Looks like the Pinarello clove. Or is it just a copy of the Pinarello cutout?



And headtube lugs if that's any help.
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Old 10-29-14, 04:41 PM
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The fork also has a brake hole, which I'm unsure is original or not. It's drilled well enough, and the crown to tyre clearance looks about right for a road fork. It's 13mm in this pic with a 21mm tubular. But, there's so little rake that it looks like track geometry. It has Campag tips and is SLX as well, so I'm assuming that it's original to the frame.



Frame weighs 1800g with a 600g fork for a 52/53 frame. Has a 27.2 post. Component dating is all over the place. Shimano 600 BB has a 85 axle with 86 cups. Front Shamal is 97 and the rear 95.


Oh, the fixed cup was red thread locked on. Had to use this 1.5m bar onto the adjustable wrench to get the cup moving. Is it a normal thing for Italian fixed cups to be thread locked so that it doesn't loosen off?



So, does anyone have a clue on this? Or is it going to become another mystery frame?
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Old 10-29-14, 04:52 PM
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It is common to use thread lock on Italian BB's but blue not red!

Not sure what the JP is for though.
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Old 10-29-14, 05:22 PM
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I like it!

and I agree that it looks like a track racing bike.
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Old 10-29-14, 05:38 PM
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Here's a side view pic. Very nice clearances and it's got a 94cm wheelbase at shortest.
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Old 10-31-14, 01:14 AM
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Anyway, I have decided that I'll paint it in a few weeks so I stripped the paint from the pantograph.






Definitely a J and P interlocked. The J goes behind the P at the top, but is in front of the P on the bottom side. The word underneath certainly is ESPECIAL. The DS seat stay is sort of missing the word though. Either a too shallow pantograph or it's been sandblasted out.

Especial is Spanish for special. I got in contact with the seller, and apparently the bike was purchased in Argeina then brought to Spain, before coming to Australia.

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Old 10-31-14, 06:03 AM
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What makes you say that it's a DIY job? The white paint is not original. It's a really thick and poorly done powdercoat. Other than the paint, the frame looks like it was built well enough. Once the paint is off, then I'll be able to see how well/clean the brazing was done.

Plus, the pantographing really makes me think this was done by at least an established builder,(probably a small local builder) with their own brand.
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Old 10-31-14, 06:14 AM
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If we want to get technical, the JP mark on the stay cap is a stamp, not a pantograph. Anyone could have a stamp like that made, so it doesn't necessarily mean an established builder. For sure he planned to make quite a few frames, but that doesn't mean he actually did.

It looks like a very nice frame, whatever it is.
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Old 10-31-14, 06:17 AM
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That looks like a play on the famous "Johnny Player Special" cigarette brand. Not that I'd know, off course. Smoking is bad for you, mkay.

Sweet frame and the wheels are amazing.
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Old 10-31-14, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
If we want to get technical, the JP mark on the stay cap is a stamp, not a pantograph.
ah, it must be. The NDS logo is off centre, whereas the DS logo is centred but not stamped with enough force for the word especial.
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Old 10-31-14, 10:00 PM
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I too was going to chime in with "John Player Special", not just a cigarette but also a Formula One race car...This is a very strange frame! Clearly a Cinelli SC BB shell, but it's been (slightly) re-worked, and those stay caps are highly unusual...never-the-less that bridge reinforcement is a Pinarello product, or a careful counterfeit...and why would anybody???
Yes, It's SLX...I'm going to guess it's from Argentina...why not?

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Old 11-01-14, 06:35 AM
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A look at Bing images for JP Especial bicycle shows many pics from South America. Nothing specific to your bike, but maybe that means you are correct in your thinking it has Argentinian or South American origin. I like the Johnny Player Special line of thinking, but the bike would certainly have to be black and gold to have anything to do with them! Apparently, the famous Raleigh Chopper stingray bike has a JP Special edition, in of course, black and gold!

Anyway, it looks like a real nice track racing frame. The geometry just looks right for the track. A check of the BB height should show more clearance than your normal road or street bike. Are you going to take her to the velodrome or just use it as a single speed street bike?
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Old 11-01-14, 06:55 AM
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I'll be building this up with European parts. 3ttt bars and stem, Campag wheels(either my Record clinchers or the Shamal tubs), stronglight cranks, Campag headset, etc. Since the fork has been drilled already, I'll leave the hole, and will run a brake as a street fixed(really only practice for track as I'm only starting off). When it goes onto the velodrome, it'll come off.

Lots of suggestions on John Player Special. I could go with the flow and go with a black and gold paint job. But I was thinking of going with pearl white with a Mondrian touch to it(like the Donhou Mandrian bike). I'll continue seeking info on it first and see if I can find what it should be before going with a new paint scheme.

Also have another proper track bike(locally built frame by Kerry Hopkins) which is getting Japanese parts.

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Old 11-01-14, 07:16 AM
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Its a Pinarello.
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Old 11-01-14, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by gmouchawar View Post
Its a Pinarello.
I think you are right!

I found this picture of a Pinarello Pista that has the same cutout in the same place as the OP's bike, on the brake bridge -

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Old 11-01-14, 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by gmouchawar View Post
Its a Pinarello.
If so (and I don't know either way) show us an example that matches this one.
I'm sure the brake bridge reinforcement is a strong persuader for that conclusion, but never seen a Pinarello with a curved bridge, stay caps like these, stamped with "JP especial" or a myriad of other details...in fact I HAVE seen them with that same Cinelli BB shell but with their own name in place of Cinelli (which was done for several other brands, too). I reckon the bridge bits could have been sourced from whoever made an order for Pinarello, but sold some "out the back door", or even cannibalized from a wreck...just speculation, but I'm not convinced by that single feature.
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Old 11-01-14, 10:03 AM
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The Columbus fork steerer have had the helical ridges (a misnomer to say "rifling") since at least the 1950's, way before there was an SLX tube set, it is not an SLX steerer.
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Old 11-01-14, 10:33 AM
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^true, but the shot of interior BB shows the "helicoidal ridges" ("rifling" is just our shorthand term for this feature) in at least the ST and chainstays, which would point to at least some of this tubeset being SLX (why the DT wouldn't be is mysterious, and you can't judge the TT from the BB shell)....and they do look to me to be Columbus ridges, not the variations that Tange or Ishiwata was known to use.
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Old 11-01-14, 03:25 PM
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They are definitely 5 helical ridges. No doubt that it's the Columbus rifling. Other than SLX, which tubeset a did have rifling? It'll be safe to say that this frame is at earliest an early 80s frame, from the age of the BB shell.

The JP logo and the Pinarello cutout don't fit together. It could be that this JP builder got some normal bridge and then cut out the clove in it. Or it could be a Pinarello that JP repaired and decided to add on his caps, but I doubt this. It is missing too many Pinarello logos and names on it.

Stripping the the paint all the way down will show the quality of the brazing, and see if there are any old pantographs that were filled in. I'll do this in 2 weeks time or so.
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Old 11-01-14, 03:49 PM
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I'm just talking about the steerer, there is no SLX steerer, they all have the ridges.

Originally Posted by unworthy1 View Post
^true, but the shot of interior BB shows the "helicoidal ridges" ("rifling" is just our shorthand term for this feature) in at least the ST and chainstays, which would point to at least some of this tubeset being SLX (why the DT wouldn't be is mysterious, and you can't judge the TT from the BB shell)....and they do look to me to be Columbus ridges, not the variations that Tange or Ishiwata was known to use.
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Old 11-01-14, 03:51 PM
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Yes, it is an SLX (or SPX) tube set, but the steerer has nothing to do with that, all Columbus steerer tubes are ridged and have been for a long time.

Originally Posted by QuangVuong View Post
They are definitely 5 helical ridges. No doubt that it's the Columbus rifling. Other than SLX, which tubeset a did have rifling? It'll be safe to say that this frame is at earliest an early 80s frame, from the age of the BB shell.

The JP logo and the Pinarello cutout don't fit together. It could be that this JP builder got some normal bridge and then cut out the clove in it. Or it could be a Pinarello that JP repaired and decided to add on his caps, but I doubt this. It is missing too many Pinarello logos and names on it.

Stripping the the paint all the way down will show the quality of the brazing, and see if there are any old pantographs that were filled in. I'll do this in 2 weeks time or so.
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Old 11-01-14, 03:53 PM
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here's a Pinarello seatstay pantograph:



close but no cigar. Plus, Pinarello never put special below theirs. and the flat shape is unusual for the seatstay cap.

The "bird" or "flower" lug cutout does look like those on Pinarellos; not sure if that lug cutout was limited to Pinarellos.



I've not seen any Pinarellos using Cinelli bottom brackets; they say Treviso if anything.


Whatever the bike is; build it up and let us know how it rides.
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Old 11-01-14, 10:28 PM
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They may not SAY "Cinelli" but here's one that I'd bet the farm was investment cast by Cinelli and Cinelli simply customized it for Pinarello with their name and town.
I'm sure that others that Pinarello used were not Cinelli products, but these are.
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Old 11-02-14, 08:41 AM
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Originally Posted by QuangVuong View Post
I'll be building this up with European parts. 3ttt bars and stem, Campag wheels(either my Record clinchers or the Shamal tubs), stronglight cranks, Campag headset, etc. Since the fork has been drilled already, I'll leave the hole, and will run a brake as a street fixed(really only practice for track as I'm only starting off). When it goes onto the velodrome, it'll come off.

Lots of suggestions on John Player Special. I could go with the flow and go with a black and gold paint job. But I was thinking of going with pearl white with a Mandrian touch to it(like the Donhou Mandrian bike). I'll continue seeking info on it first and see if I can find what it should be before going with a new paint scheme.

Also have another proper track bike(locally built frame by Kerry Hopkins) which is getting Japanese parts.
I think that's a wise approach. I'd touch up the paint and build it up and ride for a while. Sooner or later your inquiries will pay off and you'll know exactly what it is, who built it, etc. And then you'll probably know what colors to paint it. The frame is distinctive enough that you're sure to figure it out sooner or later.
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