Re: [CR] Restoration: Alloy parts. Question?

(Example: Framebuilders:Mario Confente)

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References: <>
Date: Sat, 14 Nov 2009 15:59:08 -0500
From: "Ken Freeman" <>
To: <>
Cc: Ken Wehrenberg <>,
Subject: Re: [CR] Restoration: Alloy parts. Question?

Well, I've been corrected twice on whether Campy NR parts, notably brakes and cranksets, were anodized, and several say they were. Oh well.

Several others think I am against polishing. I didn't say nobody should polish, or that polish never looks good. I'd like some shiny hubs, too. I tried to say polishing might not be restoration. If you like the way it looks, fine, but it's not restoration if the original wasn't polished.

I think this is a pretty simple concept.

If you want to make your bike look, in your opinion, better, fine. But it's not restoration. Refurbishment, refreshing, return to use, modernize, fine call it what you will, but its not restoration.

On Sat, Nov 14, 2009 at 11:40 AM, <> wrote:
> Hi Ken, all. I agree! Personalizing a bike seems much more creative than
> slavishly following catalog spec; not that there's anything wrong w/ THAT.
> Because i deal mostly w/ bikes at the lower end of the quality/price
> spectrum i feel pretty free w/ modifications. Great riding gas pipe Raleigh
> Grand Prixes? Remove the brake extension levers, throw on some alloy wheels
> or sprints and an alloy crank. Low end Italian steel? File down the seamed
> bb shell and lugs, file out the slot in the seat lug so the ears don't
> touch; align the frame [something they couldn't be bothered with back in
> Italy], sandblast the cheap one coat of paint and powdercoat it 'til it
> screams. If i had a rare or super high quality bike i'd be more cosidered,
> more conservative. But here at the bottom of the food chain it's much easier
> to justify changes that make a bike BETTER. So many modest bikes have great
> geometry and tradition just waiting to be liberated.Let me just say now,
> since it's probably blasphemy that "If you've seen one full NR bike, you've
> seen 'em all." Man i wish i had Mark Stonich's polished Campy hubs! I'd
> probably paint the oval cutouts, too. Just sayin'. Billy [solely responsible
> for this content] Ketchum; Chicago, IL; USA.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Ken Wehrenberg" <>
> To:
> Sent: Saturday, November 14, 2009 9:20:30 AM GMT -06:00 US/Canada Central
> Subject: Re: [CR] Restoration: Alloy parts. Question?
> Ken Freeman opined:
> " I realize this was not the question, but many CR-correct aluminum
> parts were
> not originally mirror polished, so "restoring" them in this way is
> not an
> act of restoration but of artistic license."
> Mark Stonich followed:
> "Once I polished up some old Campi high flange hubs with Simichrome
> and followed up with a coat of NuFinish polymer based car
> polish. Stayed so shiny that 3-4 years later I overheard, "Look,
> some idiot chromed his Campi hubs." ".
> I interject:
> We can't or shouldn't gloss over the "hot-rod" aspect that I know I
> did back in the day and I can't imagine this group not doing to some
> degree. This generally started out innocently enough-- something
> like switching out plastic-bodied Simplex for early SunTour. Later,
> as we and the components progressed, it was replacing Campy downtube
> shifters with Simplex retro-frictions. Sometimes we had logical
> reasons like we are simply improving our machine-- a missed shift in
> a race might make all the difference and the Simplex would therefore
> make us better, etc. Sometimes it was for looks not function. Admit
> it guys, you thought Mavic or Weyless hubs were pretty... and then
> there was the matter of the Crane being a better deraileur (someone
> told you) than Campy's, CLBs being an out-of-the-box trick for weight
> weenies without a drill press. And who among us did not read Richard
> Jow's columns in Bicycling! back in the day and think their
> centerpulls couldn't shine as nicely as his in that polishing piece
> you read? So our bikes may have evolved a bit, whether we admit to
> it today or not. Besides, a little Simichrome was a relaxing way to
> kick back (as you listened to Neil Young's Rust Never Sleeps)
> allowing that machine to gleem in the sunshine after a really great
> ride.
> I also will say that seat post polishing can make for a loosening
> tendency of the post as there will be, in some cases, less grip which
> could lead to slippage.
> I still cherish my hot-rodded Eisentraut "A" with drilled, polished
> and inner-ring-removed Stronglight 93s, polished Phil Woods, alloy
> toe clips on TA get the idea. Chronologically almost
> all are from within a few years but tweaked for esthetics and
> function. In other words, custom frames were meant, for customized
> parts menus.
> Ken Wehrenberg, Hermann, MO USA
> _______________________________________________
> _______________________________________________

Ken Freeman
Ann Arbor, MI USA