Tales of One Cinelli

Old jon

Guru
Location
Leeds
Last December I was talking to a man in a pub. No surprise at all really. The pub was the Grove Inn, the man was Christy Herron, whose band have played there a time or several. The conversation was about bicycles.

Specifically his Dad’s bikes. And I bought one of them. ‘Cos I was in deep need of another bike of course. I mean, I did not own an Italian made bike, did I? Deprived, I felt. A couple of weeks later I went to see the bike, Christy brought it around to my place in the boot of his car. There was one tyre on the bike that might have held air, both tyres were shedding rubber in the gentle outdoor breeze. Not encouraging for a ride across Leeds.

I did take some photographs at the time, but did little else except shove it in the spare bedroom. And saw it every day, occasionally doing little bits at it. Cables came off because they will be replaced anyway, outers as well. The outer cables were red, which might have planted a seed in my mind. Discovered the front forks were not quite as they should be, hmmm. Odds and sods else. Red bar tape . . .

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Wheels, there were two. The back wheel might have been original, Cinelli were, I think, the first bicycle maker to cast alloy onto steel (and/or cast iron). Common on motorbikes from the 1930s onwards. Cinelli cast alloy flanges onto steel hub centres, and I think I have one of those. The front wheel has a Woodrup sticker on it. A Mavic rim on an Atom hub.

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First big decision then, and I did not hurry. After a week or three it seemed a good idea to go for modern wheels. So I did that, spread the rear triangle to accept the bigger back wheel and wandered into Woodrups to ask about straightening the forks. One day later I took the frame to them, ‘Can you sort out the forks, and how about a respray too?’ said I. And settled in to wait.
 
OP
OP
Old jon

Old jon

Guru
Location
Leeds
More Cinelli
The respray took ten weeks. No, it cannot have taken ten weeks to put the paint on, this is not an oil painting. I was happy to have the frame back but not at all happy about the length of time it took. The shop’s attitude, ‘we will call you when it is ready.’ And when they did text me, they neglected to tell me the ‘headset was refitted with new bearings but running rough.’ Rough as a bear’s backside would have been more accurate . . .

Suppose I could call the picture 'Kitchen with Cinelli'

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you may see, the headstock badge needs a bit of attention

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At least they did not charge me for fitting the new headset. Small mercies. Started to put things together, and of course all the cleaning and polishing I had intended to do was still undone. Never been one of my favourite pastimes, much prefer to get the bikes mucky. Another look at the Brooks Professional that was on the bike, nah, if a cow had skin that old it would be worn out. Did not fancy risking my nether regions sat on that. New B17N instead.

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OP
Old jon

Old jon

Guru
Location
Leeds
And a bit more,

I might have mentioned the colour red. Bar tape, new, came in that colour. New cassette, very appropriately, has red spacers between sprockets. And the tyres, well, what else? Cable outers, already bought, similar. And I was told about shoe dye. Which is available in guess which colour? See how it goes, but a certain saddle might be treated that way.

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The idea of reverting to toe clips and straps just did not appeal. Fine in the sixties, it was all we had. But not now, I can just see me forgetting to undo the strap. Once is once too often. So I bought pedals that look about right for that time, but also have the modern stuff on the other side. Happy with that. Will keep the original handlebars, see how it goes. New stem, the original was way too long. In fact, polish up the brakes then a bit of assembly will have it finished. Why am I sat here typing this?

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speedfreak

Veteran
Good build, love the colours. Seems despite the time taken by the shop they have done a lovely job on it.
Quite a fan of modern components on classic frames but personally would consider taking the decals off the wheels just to give it a slightly more understated look
Looks great so far
 
OP
OP
Old jon

Old jon

Guru
Location
Leeds
Quite a fan of modern components on classic frames but personally would consider taking the decals off the wheels just to give it a slightly more understated look

Hmmm, that is worth a think of, thanks.
Almost the final assembly today, checking the rear gear shift and the band of the band on gear levers broke. This did not please me. Just ordered a new Dia Compe one, which has a proper hinge, a great improvement on the stretch-it-till-it-fits-or-almost-breaks campag thing that was on. Should be grateful that this happened at home, all the same.
 

wafter

Über Member
Location
Oxford
Excellent work - I'd love to do something similar.

Not too keen on all the red (I'd have gone tan / brown I think) but then of course it's not my bike :tongue:

Shame about the shop, but at least their standard of work looks good; better a good job in a long time than a crap job in a week!
 
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