[CR]Stinky DeRosa not Peroiod State of Art

Example: Production Builders:Cinelli:Laser

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Date: Thu, 08 Apr 2004 11:39:31 -0400
From: Grant McLean <Grant.McLean@SportingLife.ca>
Subject: [CR]Stinky DeRosa not Peroiod State of Art
To: "Classic Rendezvous Mail List (E-mail)" <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>

Hi Mike,

Like Mr. Jackson sang, "a few bad apples don't spoil the bunch". As Italian production bikes designed for racing go, I'd say Ugo and sons don't have much to be ashamed of.

I try not to forget that the vast majority of racing bikes (up until the mid 70's) where bought by racers, who didn't much care about the odd bit of rough finish here or there. I guess it's kind of like inspecting a hammer for scratches.

To measure how successful a frame builder is, there has to be an understanding of their intent. What's the point of building their frames? How well does the builder measure up to what they are trying to make? If Ugo was building a frame for Eddy Merckx to win the tour de France, is it fair to criticize that frame for having a gap in the seat lug? Would it be nice if there were no gaps? Sure it would.

So yes, we can compare and contrast the different marques for their level of craftsmanship and artistic value, but lets not forget how well they measure up to what the builder intended in the first place. De Rosa built frames to be used in races.

IMHO, any builder who chromes lugs, paints on pinstripes, and hand paints their logos is begging to be judged on the finish level of their frames. I feel that it's fair to criticize that builder for their level of skill if the quality of the fishish doesn't measure up.

Grant McLean Toronto.Ca

From: hersefan@comcast.net Subject: [CR]Stinky DeRosa not Peroiod State of Art Message-ID: <040720042212.5280.40747CB000019B7A000014A02200750744FF919E999A8C8D9A@comcas t.net> Precedence: list Message: 15

I will differ with Richard on this one. First though, I would like to thank Richard for being one of the several elite builders who define state-of-the-art frame construction. His work helps us all put other frames into perspective.

I believe that from the 1930's through the 1970's there have on occasion been frames built that are vastly superior to the DeRosa in question and which come close to the current standards of top level American craftsmanship.

Bikes that come to mind include the mid 60's green Masi track bike I previosly owned - the drop out attachment in particular was among the finest I've ever seen. This Masi was built to a much higher standard than any other Masi I have seen from the period.

Early 1950's Rene Herse frames have a precision that is typical of current American builders or the wonderfully precise Japanese builders. Brazing is uniform and never a gap.

A few years back I had a Seiber frame that, from the outside, completely embarased the DeRosas in question. The Seiber was pre-war.

Also, the Pop Brenan track bike at the Cirque last year was again, from external appearences, built with superior brazing than the Stinky DeRosas in question.

I've owned lots of 70's bikes, but the DeRosa was bothersome. I simply could not respect it and therefore I put it on the for sale block and it found a nice home.

Mike Kone in Boulder CO
> mikey, mikey, mikey...
> this would be a tough thread - because the rose coloured*
> glasses would need thicker and thicker lenses to really
> disect CR era stuff in the vein that u r suggesting. i think
> the derosa that is depicted is/was state of the art re "work-
> manship" back then. otoh, when i stripped the paint from my
> TWO italian 71 masis i was aghast at the level of heavy-handness
> that was evident. i even wrote about it in my tome, Period Correct®.
> i think the issue will become linked to our antenaes (sp?) going
> up much higher now than they were able to go in the 70s. it's
> an across-the-board problem when retrospecting. i like keeping
> things within their respective eras. my opinion of the a singers was
> based in a 2003 sensibility, but i think the derosa and others like
> them were mighty fine for 70s work. the only builder whose frames
> i saw (read: I SAW...) back then whose work and workmanship crossed
> eras was w.b. hurlow.
> Richard Sachs Cycles
> No.9, North Main Street
> Chester, CT 06412 USA
> Tel. 860.526.2059
> site: http://www.richardsachs.com
> pics: http://photos.yahoo.com/bobbesrs
> rants: http://richardsachs.blogspot.com/
> *i spelled in the british way because i'm feeling so
> On Wed, 07 Apr 2004 19:09:18 +0000 hersefan@comcast.net writes:
> Hi CR folks,
> If you go to the Japanese web site in Richards post you will see images
> of a DeRosa which is one of the very rare early 70's ones.
> The workmanship on this one like one I personally owned a few years back
> is painfully weak - check out the braze globs at the seatlug for example.
> The one I owned had brazing gaps of pathetic proportions. It was still
> a very cool bike though...
> After putting Alex Singer through the workmanship wringer a few weeks
> back, it is time someone put DeRosa through the wringer as well. I
> thought the one I had was an aberation. Apparently not.
> Also on the topic of quality, I cut open an old Cinelli which was crashed
> to examine. Overall way better than necessary, but some mighty poor
> mitering compared with a top tier American built frame.
> Mike Kone in Boulder CO
> I have
> > yup
> > that's exactly how i remember the first derosas i saw.
> > they were dubois lugged with the odd dipsy-do in the
> > front of the head tube. pity - those frames never had a
> > reinforcer brazed within the seat lug ears: all the crushed,
> > mis-shapen, and distorted lugs.
> > but i digress.
> > i also have good news. in addition to saving on my car insurance
> > by switching to geico, UCONN HUSKIES KICKED BUTTKUS AT
> > gotta go...
> > e-RICHIE®
> > Richard Sachs Cycles
> > No.9, North Main Street
> > Chester, CT 06412 USA
> > Tel. 860.526.2059
> > site: http://www.richardsachs.com
> > pics: http://photos.yahoo.com/bobbesrs
> > rants: http://richardsachs.blogspot.com/
> >
> >
> >
> > On Wed, 07 Apr 2004 14:24:39 -0400 Grant McLean
> > <Grant.McLean@SportingLife.ca> writes:
> > Hi List,
> > I noticed today that the japanese website for Yokoo cycles has been
> > updated with some more fancy retro stuff. Note the nice derosa....
> > http://www.cycles-yokoo.co.jp/collection.html.html
> > grant mclean
> > Toronto, Canada

------------------------------ From: Richard M Sachs <richardsachs@juno.com> To: mail@woodworkingboy.com Cc: classicrendezvous@bikelist.org Subject: Re: [CR]What did the old builders have in mind? Message-ID: <20040407.202715.2904.81.richardsachs@juno.com> Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii MIME-Version: 1.0 Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit Precedence: list Message: 5

Dennis Young <mail@woodworkingboy.com> writes: "Would you care to elaborate on how workmanship was affected by period a as applied to bicycles within our area of interest? Are you saying that the makers of yesteryear had to work faster to survive, therefore the level of "quality" deemed appropriate by the top names was different than today? It seems odd that some bikes by a specific maker within a certain period were well done, and others sloppy. Not being a frame builder, I may be taking liberties here, but if the challenge of good workmanship is not a priority, the work would seem to be pretty boreing. The interest lies in the financial profits? I hope our heroes weren't wealthy and bored. I'd like to get a better idea of the mind set of the old builders." **************************

e-RICHIE: here it is: "...your extrapolating of my point is correct and on the mark. the flame we (all of us) are trying to keep burning is based in emotion and subjectivity. you're right to suggest that it may have never been lit to begin with. this is not cynicism on my part; it's an opinion based on real life experiences within the industry. i cannot speak for ???!??, but i once used the "iconoclastic" italian framebuilders as a role model. <cut> we all need to find something to aspire to. my aspirations were based on what i read, and what i "thought", and the fantasies i concocted when i was, uh, new. several years in the biz and 5-6 trips to italy later have exposed me to a reality that has little overlap with what i expected in my earlier days. these points have all been covered before and are in the archives. in essence, tho' we (the 'merican builders...) were trying to emulate and hopefully, one day, catch up to our euro counter- parts, we created something that did not exist over there. one-man shops, or small production artisanal shops were not the norm. they were and are anomalies. i'd say, to a brand, not one shop would fill the description that henry gave of, "a frame handcrafted by 'Luigi'..." the irony, for me at least, is that the products-all through the ensuing years-have been of a high quality, whether it was handmade, or lovingly crafted, or custom-made, or whatdeva! the mythology (bad word choice, but you get my drift) is something that we all attach to it. it is not something that these makers used to market their bicycles.