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My new to me Merlin Ti

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Old 07-07-18, 02:48 PM
  #1  
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My new to me Merlin Ti




This morning I purchased a 1992 61cm Merlin Ti -Tom Kellog design this morning from the original owner.
My first Ti !
The bike has less than 200 miles on it according to its original owner.
Pretty excited to hopefully be breathing new life into a vintage Merlin.
The group set is all Campagnolo.
I anxiously await its arrival this week and will give it a through going over, tune up, cleaning, new tires if needed.
Then it will be time to ride and get to know my new to myy Merlin.






1992 Merlin Ti


Geometry by Tom Kellogg


1992 Merlin Ti










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Old 07-07-18, 11:49 PM
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Very nice! How many speeds? Is that a titanium fork?
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Old 07-08-18, 01:31 AM
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Originally Posted by John00 View Post
Very nice! How many speeds? Is that a titanium fork?
Thanks! It’s a 2X8 or (16 speed) and it’s an Aluminium front fork. The frame was purchased in Oct 1992 and built then.
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Old 07-08-18, 08:29 AM
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Very nice! I have my dad's 1989 Spectrum titanium by Tom Kellogg. Super nice bike but just a little too tall so it will find a home with my brother next weekend.
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Old 07-08-18, 08:49 AM
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Nice find!
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Old 07-08-18, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by blakcloud View Post
Nice find!
Thanks Much appreciated!
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Old 07-08-18, 02:00 PM
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New to me is fun, a Merlin Ti sounds like a winner to me...Nancy Reagan taught me just say no to shifting tho' so my last new to me was a 50s straightbar Schwinn Hornet...

Liked the Columbia '1937' I bought a nephew so much that I decided go N+1 again temporarily and get a ~1955 Columbia next month! Probably give it to his dad.
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Old 07-09-18, 06:17 AM
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Nice bike. You'll have to add it to the "Show us your titaniums" thread when you get the bike.
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Old 07-09-18, 06:31 AM
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It should be your forever bike.
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Old 07-09-18, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by RonH View Post
Nice bike. You'll have to add it to the "Show us your titaniums" thread when you get the bike.
Will do Ron!
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Old 07-09-18, 02:19 PM
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Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
It should be your forever bike.
Thank you, that’s my plan! I am looking forward to seat time for sure. But first I need to go through it and give it a good check.
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Old 07-09-18, 07:24 PM
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The SR fork was a good riding fork, in line with steel forks at that time. Not brutally stiff at all. Have fun with it. Someday everyone will recognize the benefit of a titanium frame, but for now those of us that ride 'em have a jump on the bunch!
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Old 07-10-18, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero View Post
The SR fork was a good riding fork, in line with steel forks at that time. Not brutally stiff at all. Have fun with it. Someday everyone will recognize the benefit of a titanium frame, but for now those of us that ride 'em have a jump on the bunch!
Thanks, I attempting to read and learn all I can about this Merlin. I plan to go over it carefully give it a really good cleaning, tune up and learn more about lubing the BB.
Also hoping someone on here with a 1992 Merlin Road will provide additional owner info. Any and all Ti frame care recommendations appreciated. I will likely replace the tires with a decent high end red wall road tire. Thinking about an oxblood color -Selle Anatomica seat and a matching bar tape. We’ll see.
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Old 07-10-18, 03:21 PM
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Really nice bike!!
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Old 07-10-18, 06:19 PM
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"I will likely replace the tires with a decent high end red wall road tire. Thinking about an oxblood color -Selle Anatomica seat and a matching bar tape." I am just now moving from the red theme on my bike to something new. Been "red" for a long time and want to go in a new direction. Replaced red pedals with silver, red tape with black, and saddle is black and yellow. Might rethink the tape.
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Old 07-12-18, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero View Post
"I will likely replace the tires with a decent high end red wall road tire. Thinking about an oxblood color -Selle Anatomica seat and a matching bar tape." I am just now moving from the red theme on my bike to something new. Been "red" for a long time and want to go in a new direction. Replaced red pedals with silver, red tape with black, and saddle is black and yellow. Might rethink the tape.
An Oxblood Selle will look sharp! What width tire are you running now?
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Old 07-12-18, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Patriot1 View Post


Thanks, I attempting to read and learn all I can about this Merlin. I plan to go over it carefully give it a really good cleaning, tune up and learn more about lubing the BB.
Also hoping someone on here with a 1992 Merlin Road will provide additional owner info. Any and all Ti frame care recommendations appreciated. I will likely replace the tires with a decent high end red wall road tire. Thinking about an oxblood color -Selle Anatomica seat and a matching bar tape. We’ll see.
This frame likely has the old Merlin/Spectrum press-fit BB system which uses current Phil Wood spindles and common cartridge bearings. You simply leave the cartridge bearings alone until they start to feel crummy. Then you'll need to knock them out and press in new ones. There used to be special tools for this, but it can be done with more primitive means. Have your mechanic contact Tom Kellogg if they need instructions.

The group on the bike is 1992 Chorus, which received the really high end Croce group crank when that group went away. Really nice components.


I have an Extralight made a few years later. You can buy a new Ti bike, but not a better one.
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Old 07-12-18, 11:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Kontact View Post
This frame likely has the old Merlin/Spectrum press-fit BB system which uses current Phil Wood spindles and common cartridge bearings. You simply leave the cartridge bearings alone until they start to feel crummy. Then you'll need to knock them out and press in new ones. There used to be special tools for this, but it can be done with more primitive means. Have your mechanic contact Tom Kellogg if they need instructions.

The group on the bike is 1992 Chorus, which received the really high end Croce group crank when that group went away. Really nice components.


I have an Extralight made a few years later. You can buy a new Ti bike, but not a better one.
Thanks! All info appreciated.
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Old 07-12-18, 12:19 PM
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Just some more thoughts on an old bike:

You have a 1 inch fork. Should you ever decide to upgrade from the aluminum, you could get a vintage correct Kestrel EMS threaded fork, or go threadless with modern Columbus Minimal.

Miche makes inexpensive 8 speed cassettes that are 100% compatible with your freehub. Any quality 8 speed chain will work. That rear derailleur probably maxes out at 28t low cogs.

Your chainrings are 135bcd, so the lowest chainring you can mount is 39t. Your spindle is 111mm ISO, so if you want to change the crank without changing the spindle, you'd need to find a crank that takes about the same length ISO - not real likely outside of old Campy.

Your shifters are rebuildable. When the shifting gets "soft", it is time to have the G-springs replaced and possibly the carrier.

Pull the seatpost once every year or so and put fresh silver anti-seize, grease or carbon traction paste in there. Don't use copper anti-seize like "Ti Prep".

Replacement brake pads are available for that era's pad holders, but make sure you get the right ones - Campy had several shapes at that time. Yours are rectangular.

Your cranks have a built in extractor, and that extractor is held in the crank with reverse threads. So if you want to remove the crank, make sure the lockring is lefty-tighty, drip some oil in and then loosen the crank bolts the usual direction. Otherwise, you need a special Campy extractor tool for the reverse threads. I think the crank bolt is unusual - 7mm hex.
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Old 07-12-18, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Kontact View Post
Just some more thoughts on an old bike:

You have a 1 inch fork. Should you ever decide to upgrade from the aluminum, you could get a vintage correct Kestrel EMS threaded fork, or go threadless with modern Columbus Minimal.

Miche makes inexpensive 8 speed cassettes that are 100% compatible with your freehub. Any quality 8 speed chain will work. That rear derailleur probably maxes out at 28t low cogs.

Your chainrings are 135bcd, so the lowest chainring you can mount is 39t. Your spindle is 111mm ISO, so if you want to change the crank without changing the spindle, you'd need to find a crank that takes about the same length ISO - not real likely outside of old Campy.

Your shifters are rebuildable. When the shifting gets "soft", it is time to have the G-springs replaced and possibly the carrier.

Pull the seatpost once every year or so and put fresh silver anti-seize, grease or carbon traction paste in there. Don't use copper anti-seize like "Ti Prep".

Replacement brake pads are available for that era's pad holders, but make sure you get the right ones - Campy had several shapes at that time. Yours are rectangular.

Your cranks have a built in extractor, and that extractor is held in the crank with reverse threads. So if you want to remove the crank, make sure the lockring is lefty-tighty, drip some oil in and then loosen the crank bolts the usual direction. Otherwise, you need a special Campy extractor tool for the reverse threads. I think the crank bolt is unusual - 7mm hex.
Why Silver Anti-seize?
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Old 07-12-18, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Secret Squirrel View Post
Why Silver Anti-seize?
Using anti seize to help prevent galvanic corrosion means that you want something that is going to be the same or more anodic than the metals you are trying to protect. The usual silver stuff is full of aluminum, which should act as a sacrificial anode compared to the anodized aluminum post. Rarer magnesium anti-seize would be better.

Copper is less anodic, so it is just helping form a galvanic circuit that will help the aluminum corrode rather than prevent it.

Ti and carbon are at the other end of the scale, which is why aluminum parts can be an issue with them.
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Old 07-15-18, 10:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Kontact View Post
Just some more thoughts on an old bike:

You have a 1 inch fork. Should you ever decide to upgrade from the aluminum, you could get a vintage correct Kestrel EMS threaded fork, or go threadless with modern Columbus Minimal.

Miche makes inexpensive 8 speed cassettes that are 100% compatible with your freehub. Any quality 8 speed chain will work. That rear derailleur probably maxes out at 28t low cogs.

Your chainrings are 135bcd, so the lowest chainring you can mount is 39t. Your spindle is 111mm ISO, so if you want to change the crank without changing the spindle, you'd need to find a crank that takes about the same length ISO - not real likely outside of old Campy.

Your shifters are rebuildable. When the shifting gets "soft", it is time to have the G-springs replaced and possibly the carrier.

Pull the seatpost once every year or so and put fresh silver anti-seize, grease or carbon traction paste in there. Don't use copper anti-seize like "Ti Prep".

Replacement brake pads are available for that era's pad holders, but make sure you get the right ones - Campy had several shapes at that time. Yours are rectangular.

Your cranks have a built in extractor, and that extractor is held in the crank with reverse threads. So if you want to remove the crank, make sure the lockring is lefty-tighty, drip some oil in and then loosen the crank bolts the usual direction. Otherwise, you need a special Campy extractor tool for the reverse threads. I think the crank bolt is unusual - 7mm hex.
Excellent useful info Kontact, Thanks!
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Old 07-31-18, 06:16 PM
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Beautiful Ti bikes here. I found my 61cm Serrotta Ottrot as a used frame, bought a headset, moved parts from my Bianchi, got an Ultegra Di2. I kept my Bontrager carbon isozone handlebars with Fizik gel under the wraps as the single best upgrade I can possibly recommend for ride improvement. I haven’t had to “shake out my hands” once since that upgrade. To me, the bike is my Magic Carpet and I am strictly the limiiting factor as I try to ide my 1000 miles per year...& tomorrow is my 70th birthday,
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Old 08-01-18, 06:35 AM
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Nice ride!..but no ride reports? It's been a few weeks.

A few months back I picked up an '02 Ti Lemond with about 50 miles on it. Now my main rider..beautiful bike, wonderful, fun experience on the road.
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Old 08-01-18, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by fishboat View Post
Nice ride!..but no ride reports? It's been a few weeks.

A few months back I picked up an '02 Ti Lemond with about 50 miles on it. Now my main rider..beautiful bike, wonderful, fun experience on the road.
Thanks Fishboat, A few changes...I have been busy working my new to me Merlin with a detailed cleaning, greasing the BB, new tires, mirrors, Selle Anatomica Vintage/Silver seat, bar tape, frame pump, Ti water bottle cages.
My first ride/shake down was 35 miles...just awesome! I really like how rigid and yet comfortable the Ti frame soaks up the road and the 1992 original Campy group needed zero adjustment. This bike really brings a smile to my face when I take off for a few hours. I hope to ride it for many many years.
I have reached out and talked with Tom Kellogg (the bikes designer) at Spectrum cycle about my new to me Merlin.
A super nice guy who helped me with several questions I had about the bike..very cool. In fact the Ti welder who welded my Merlin still works for Tom at Spectrum Cycles.

I wanted a really clean Vintage Ti bike at a fair price and this barely ridden Merlin “Road” continues to exceed all my
expectations and big wow factor at a fraction of the cost of a brand new Ti bike. Winning!

Forever bike-


1992 Merlin “Road”





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