After looking for a number of years, an opportunity presented itself and… I just bought my first Italian bike!
Here’s the photos from the advert, looking mostly complete and in sound condition.
The Tecnos is a steel framed road bike, made by Colnago in the second half of the 1990s and I understand to be the lightest steel frame they ever built. The tubing is made by Columbus, with a special alloy, made only for this bike.
I presume this was one of the last frames to be made in Italy before work was outsourced to the far east. The frame is painted in Colnago’s Art Decor style, a somewhat psychedelic, vivid paint scheme, done entirely by hand. It’s really something special. According to the 1997 Colnago catalogue the paint scheme is called AD10-SP10.
On getting it home, for once I managed to contain my excitement and took some close-up photos before I did anything to it, though I was itching to get to work!
The bell really adds to the look, as well as the reflective tape on the head tube…
A little cable housing rub on the head tube, pretty common on used bikes.
Damaged chrome on one fork leg, not good.
Rims are sound and true, no cracks.
Really nice lug work despite a little light rust.
The other fork leg is fine.
Some pretty spectacular paintwork. You either love it or you hate it!
The paint was a surprise. I expected it to be glossy, but it’s actually a matt, soft, slightly tacky finish. Quite unusual and I have never seen this before.
Chain rings are good, no shark teeth here.
Quick release put in the wrong way round for my liking.
I spent the rest of the day washing it, removing stickers, the bell, the saddle bag, the lock, and various bits of sticky tape.
…and servicing the gritty and grimy rear derailleur, cleaning the chain, adjusting the saddle, brakes, installing some new Michelin Classic tires and switching out the pedals to Ultegra SPDs for a test ride.
As there’s still some more to do, I’ll keep the photos for another day, but I took it for a shakedown ride on Sunday and it greatly exceeded expectations.
My overwhelming first impression was how smooth it is. Very little road vibration, smooth shifting, everything is tight. At speed it just flies with very little effort. Gearing ratios are little odd, and didn’t give us much range as I would’ve expected for a triple chainring, though climbing was no problem.
Steering is very precise, without being twitchy and nervous. I had never ridden Campagnolo before, so the shifting took a little getting used to, but it has a good, positive, clicky feel.
It’s amazing how well this 18 year old bike rides, a real cracker.
Watch this space for updates and photos of the finished project!