[CR]Track courses and frames

(Example: Events:Cirque du Cyclisme:2004)

Date: Sun, 05 Jan 2003 18:11:39 -0800
From: "Dennis Young" <mail@woodworkingboy.com>
To: <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
Subject: [CR]Track courses and frames

I made a trip over to Maebashi City in Gunma Prefecture. There are two race tracks there. The older one is now mainly used by the high school clubs for their training and races. They had planned to tear it down, before so many of the current and former racers around raised a big stink about it. The newer track is completely indoors, and as is usual over here, is operated by the local municipal government. Since the races held there are for legal gambling, the track provides a good source of revenue for the city. It is a very impressive looking structure, with races held there frequently. This is a very strongly regulated professional sport in Japan, with hefty rules implemented to keep 'unsavory' interests from penetrating into the activity. Much of the output from the best and better known frame makers in Japan goes to supply the needs of the pros involved in the track sport. I payed a visit to a local bike shop there, with whom I had previously done some business. I mentioned to the mechanic that I am always looking for old pista frames. He said that racers bring them in fairly frequently, asking for them to be scrapped, *;-) and he gave me one on the spot that was lingering in the warehouse. Not much interest in the 'old ones' it seems, as well as the liability concerns were they to be resold. It got me to thinking.... these pros are definitely heavy mashers, and they go through bikes pretty fast. When checking out a used pista frame, where are you likely to see heavy use damage occur? Are stress cracks around the bb shell a likelihood, and possibly are internal and not so easily recognized on the outside? Perhaps I need invest in a used xray machine? Can anyone advise as to the likely areas of damage? Thanks in advance.

Dennis Young
Hotaka, Japan