[CR]Early Colnago bicyclesea


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Date: Sun, 08 Feb 2004 23:46:00 -0500
From: "Martin O. Walsh" <mowalsh@erols.com>
To: "classicrendezvous@bikelist.org" <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
Subject: [CR]Early Colnago bicyclesea

Dear CR list, I've purchased what I believe to be one of the "EARLY COLNAGOS" (circa 1970-1973).It is what I believe to be a Colnago Super.There was a thread on this (early Colnago's) back in the late Spring of 2003 (May 31,2003). Based on the information of several list members who own and or restore Colnago bicycles, I would like to thank everyone who wrote privately or responded to the CR list concerning the "early" Colnago bicycles back in the Spring of '03. I'm surprised at how little factual information there is, that is "readily available" to help someone determine the age of the "early Colnagos". (I guess I need to get adept at using the CR list archives). What is even more surprising to me is if Colnago celebrated their 50th Anniversary in 2003,why do we not see or talk about the REAL EARLY COLNAGOS,Circa 1950's and 1960's???
>From everything I've read,which is admittedly limited to internet searches.....The earliest Colnago bicycles discussed are the 1970's Colnago Supers. I would like to credit Michael Kone's article of a "Bicycle Highlight","1971 COLNAGO SUPER" from his January 1999 Issue of THE VINTAGE RACING BICYCLE NEWSLETTER #17. I would also like to thank Brian Baylis who wrote privately and to the list about his information on "early" Colnagos with the "playing card" graphics.

The bicycle I purchased has been repainted, and has had braze ons added,making me dig for the small details. The tell tale signs indicating an early Colnago, that this frameset has are the Colnago "clover" in three lugs (seat lug,top tube lug, and down tube lug). The seat tube lug also has "a circular hole on the lower front portion of the seatlug" (from Mike Kone's article).

The COLNAGO SUPER that I purchased .....The front fork has been fully chromed in Italy,by the previous owner.The fork crown has small circular holes ( a total of four) drilled in the points in the outer "corners" of the fork crown. The fork crown is "semi sloping" (not flat) and has the Colnago clover cast into the semi-sloping fork crown.The inner reinforcing tangs on the front fork are smooth (no holes).

I'm told the very earliest fork crowns are FLAT with no other marks or engravings and are chromed (only the fork crown is chromed).

Examples I have seen,of the "early Colnago's Supers, have only been pictures as seen on the "Campy Only" website in the "RETRO GALLERY" section entitled, RETRO ARCHIVE I, which shows a 1970's Colnago restored by "Cyclart".Some good photo's showing the early fork crown. Ed Litton's early Colnago Super as shown on the Classic Rendezvous website, listed under ED LITTON U.S.A.,the bicycle appears to be one of the "early USA imports of Colnago Supers imported by Peter Rich.I wonder if the paint and graphics are original. The chrome on the fork chrome appears original. I have seen a picture of Brian Baylis's "early Colnago" with the playing card graphics and a stunning blue paint job.

I plan to bring my "new" Colnago Super to show to the Colnago experts at Cirque 2004.The bicycle was purchased in Italy by an Italian-American who,bought the Colnago used in Italy and brought it to the USA about twelve years ago.The heavy repaint almost covers one of the three Colnago clovers in one of the lugs.I'm amazed by how much detail can be covered over by a heavy repaint, making details almost disappear!

It would be neat to have a "COLNAGO SUPER" SECTION at the Cirque 2004. Right next to the Masi only section!

Yours truly,
Marty Walsh in Vienna,Va.,USA