On Ebay in 2008 dosbrina a German seller sold a complete bike described as Merckx Molteni 1973 with exactly the same cutouts:
I saved the pics and have now uploaded some to Photobucket:
Back then I think some questions were raised about dosbrina's descriptions - in this case it was simply claimed as 1973 Merckx Molteni with original paint - there were no suggestions as to its builder.
My guess would be a Belgian builder - they mostly used English threaded BBs and often featured Italian style details - the one on Ebay at least had a Columbus steerer...
There is a GP Samyn-Sport held every spring near Brugges.
Hilary Stone, Bristol, British Isles
On 03/01/2011 16:36, Norris Lockley wrote:
> One of the very many rewarding aspects of this CR community and the blogging
> facility provided by Dale and the sponsors, is that the participants can
> play at amateur sleuths.
> Many and frequent are the requests from Listers for help in identifying this
> frame or that hub etc etc...and just as many are the responses from the
> onlookers and readers. It is, therefore, this spirit of all-for-one-one
> for-all that I now call upon in placing my first query of 2011 before the CR
> The frame in question is one of my more recent purchases on French Eby..and
> it was awaiting me, well wrapped up in all enveloping cardboard when I
> arrived at at friend's house near Sancerre in November. I still always find
> the process of unwrapping such a parcel just as exciting as I did when, as a
> nipper, I unwrapped my presents on Christmas morning.
> And so, armed with a craft knife to rip open the khaki-coloured adhesive
> tape, I started to dismember the parcel..and to pull out the
> obscurely-branded frame. The rear drop-outs appeared first in a breach-birth
> style, then the main triamgle followed by the head tube. The forks, wrapped
> in their own little cardboard parcel were securely tied to the seat-stays
> with even more khaki tape...more craft-knife action was needed. Most of the
> main tubes were shrouded in cardboard tubes, but I did recall that the frame
> was supposed to be all chrome-plated.
> Attacking the forks first, I was pleased to find Campagnolo drop-outs
> attached to elegantly sweeping blades..these in turn being brazed into a
> neat 70s-type flat crown with two little holes drilled in the short pointed
> legs, reminding me of a similar feature on frames such as Eddy Merckx,
> Ernesto Colnago, and Delpierre (Gemini). Lonf tangs graced the insides of
> the upper reaches of the fork blades.
> I then freed up the rear drop-outs, chainstays and bottom bracket. The
> nicely finished Campag drop-outs were rather clumsily brazed into the ends
> of the stays, with little real effort to decorate, drill, or chamfer the
> ends of the stays...resulting in a treatment that was not truly French,
> definitely not Italian..and not really English either. At the bracket came
> real shock... English threading..in a 1970s French frame.
> Turning over the frame to search for a Frame Number, and finding No 559, I
> also found a huge capital letter 'T' fretted neatly out of the shell,
> together with some other neat work to a window in one of the shell's legs.
> The seat stays themselves offered up a well-made brake bridge brazed into
> place with a pair of ubiquitous long windowed tangs. The seat cluster
> revealed itself as a truly French original, as seen on frames in the best of
> company.. However the long point on what I took to be a Prugnat windowless
> lug had been adorned with another immaculately fretted letter 'T'....as had
> the points on both of the head tube lugs....a very Italian touch.
> So what I have is a frame that looks, at first glance to be traditionally
> French, from the 70s..well-built..hard ridden...losing its lustre in places,
> but with an English threaded bracket and fork column..and finishing touches
> of Italian high style.. The frame has only one braze-on...a cable stop on
> the chainstay well towards the gear-side drop-out.
> What do the cognoscenti of the CR LIst make of this latest addition to my
> stable..an Italian stallion, a French frippery or a bast***ised British..? I
> have my own ideas, some of them quite outrageous, but it would be
> interesting to hear from others more steeped in Italian frames and names
> than I am.
> Photos can be found at: http://www.flickr.com/
> Carry on sleuthing.
> Norris Lockley
> Settle UK