>....I don't know about you, but I must confess to feeling a warm
>sentimental pull at the sight of a less than perfect touchup by a loving
>owner who took as much care as his limited skills and simple tools allowed.
> It is what one might call an "honest" or 'functional" repair... it
>protects the frame, it does not hurt what is left of the original finish,
>and it leaves no doubt what is original and what has been repaired (not
>unlike the fresco repairs where color is laid in with fine crosshatching so
>that future curators will have no doubt what is the repair). Perhaps this
>could be described as the bike owner's equivalent of a mother's "BandAid
>and a hug."
>Therefore, let me suggest that if you respect the original finish of these
>bikes, and if you enjoy riding them (rather then sending them off for a few
>months to be repainted, then on its arrival find yourself riding with fear
>and inhibition lest you mar the perfect paint), then take a chance and do
>what you did when you were twelve... fix it yourself, don't worry about
>perfection, hop back on and go for a ride.
>Columbus, GA USA
Bob, that's a really nice post, and it resonates with me completetly.
Some on the list are undoubtedly hoping i'll hurry up and get another OT bike so they don't have to keep hearing about the damn Italvega. But right now, it's the only example I have.
Blessedly, there's not much worry about the Italvega being too valuable to ride, and there's really no temptation to spend upwards of $400 restoring a $250 eBay find. The paint job isn't the best, but it's lovely in it's own way. The grass-green paint is thin and semi-transparent, the graininess of the roughened chrome underneath shows through. Granted, the gold lug lining looks like it was applied with a Q-Tip by an underpaid apprentice hung over after a night with a big jug of Sangiovese. But that's what's great about it - it was painted by a real person in an Italian factory, and possibly around the same time Eddy's was on an epic solo breakaway en route to his first Tour victory, the Beatles were recording the greatest album B-side ever to be put to vinyl, Neil Armstrong was taking one small step, and I was entering the world, kicking and screaming. Not necessarily in order of importance :-). So I'll be damned if I'm going to have that sanded off and redone in two-stage polyurethane (although that may be perfectly appropriate in other cases). As Brian suggested, I'm going to do my best to do my own touch-ups (where necessary to protect the integrity of the frame), try to somehow replace the 2% of the decals that are barely hanging on, and give it a gentle cleaning and polish. It won't be professional, but it will be my work, lovingly applied (and can't be too much more erratic than the factory job). Not saying anyone else should feel the way I do, just giving Bob an amen.
Jerry G. Prigmore
Clovis, California, USA