Re: [CR]The Crit Bike

(Example: Component Manufacturers:Chater-Lea)

Date: Wed, 15 Oct 2008 07:59:57 -0400
From: "Daniel Artley" <>
To: "Classic Rendezvous" <>
Subject: Re: [CR]The Crit Bike

Please correct me if I'm wrong on this, but as I recall a crit frame had a high bottom bracket and almost track bike like geometry. I've owned two crit frames, and I really do not like them for the road. I believe parts were what worked best for the criterium rider, a bike being able to explode out of turns, some courses being fairly hilly forcing the rider to be in oxygen debt a bit more. The high BB would allow a rider to cut corners tighter, and shorter wheelbase for transmitting energy to the ground better. My main crit frame handled like thought, had an approximate 75 degree head angle, a very short wheelbase and was very stiff. It worked well at the time, but you had to pay attention all the time, very unforgiving.

It was so long ago, I don't remember whether I read it or got it directly from Richard Sachs. He believed that one bike designed to a fair balance would work better than a criterium specific frame, allow a bike to go deeper into corners more stabley. Others please pipe up if corrections are needed.

Happy trails,

Dan Artley in Parkton, Maryland USA

Archive-URL: vous.10810.0540.eml From: devotion finesse <devotion_finesse(AT)> Date: Wed, 15 Oct 2008 00:57:40 -0400 Subject: [CR]The Crit Bike ( ing=%22The+Crit+Bike%22&amp;SearchPrefix=%40msgsubject&amp;SortBy=Msg Date%5Ba%5D )

For reasons unbeknownst to me, I have an increasing interest in The Criterium Bicycle. Perhaps it is because of the small build details that often differentiate a criterium racer from the average all-around road racing bicycle. Much like the time trial bike, the crit bike seems to be purpose-b uilt, often with small bits of ingenuity and invention born from the needs of racers engaged in a very particular or specific practice. While I see plenty of "period" builds or restorations, race-specific restorations seem a bit less common. But I am endlessly fascinated by creativity with things such as cable routing, lever placement, drillium, curved shift levers, etc. (Weigle's white '73 Time Trial machine is an all-time favorite of mine.)

Just for fun, I have decided to build my current project as a period crit-specific bike...Partially because when I received the frame, it had been re-painted, braze-ons had been added and I have thus been (temporarily) liberated from the responsibility to build it as a "period correct" restora tion. My long term plan is to have the frame restored to it's early 70's glory... but given my current financial status, I also created another challenge for myself: Build this bike with as many on-hand parts as possible.

I just so happened to have a pair of Cinelli Criterium bars, NR levers with "shield logo" gum hoods, Campy bar-cons, a 7-speed wheelset with lo w flange NR hubs laced to gray annodized Nisi Mixers (which I will be re-spacing to a 5-speed) and a bunch of other Nuovo Record bits... So I will attempt to build what I call a "late 70's/early 80's take on the refurbishment of an early 70's race bike."

I am hoping The List can suggest some build details that might be worth considering as I set up my first criterium style bike. I have seen pics of bikes with a single ring in front and a bar-end shifter for the rear cluster (a corn cob, I'd imagine). I have seen bikes with two bar ends...Or a downtube shifter for the front and a bar-end for the rear.

What other sorts of details made a bike a quintessential "crit bike"? 165mm cranks to enable pedaling through corners? Where the bars typically shorte ned the same way track bars were? I'd imagine this would be the case, especially if barcons were used...Any help or pics of similar builds is appreciated. As is a pair of nutted/non-recessed Nuovo Record brake calipers.

Matthew Bowne
Brooklyn, New York