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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 2:58 pm 
The Guv'nor
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Probably been over this one before but a rehash won't hurt.

What for you is the most under rated retro bike? Either under rated at the time and still under rated. Or well rated back in the day but not rated a few years on.

It seems some were well though about BiTD and well regarded now, eg Klein and Fat. Some perhaps have increased their stature with time, eg any mid range Kona.

One example might be Cannondale. I'm sure the revisionist will dispute this but some (or most) of their early 90s alloy frames were top end stuff.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:07 pm 
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Agree with this. Never been a fan of Cannondales, but I have a SM700 (black with neon green splatter), and it certainly is a top end bike.
Another brand might be Marin?


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:08 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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I would second Cannondale. I rode my 86 SM600 on sunday for the first time in two years and was pleasantly suprised just how 'modern' it felt. They are really nice frames, super light for starters and the hand sanded welds are really nicely done giving it an almost fillet brazed look. Also the seat and chainstays are beautifully shaped. Really ahead of it's time. Mine used to really turn heads bitd and everyone of my mates wanted one. They were expensive and exclusive back in the mid 80's and were still making nice stuff into the 90's.
I do wonder why they don't have more of a following in the old bike world especially considering how affordable they are now. I certainly cannot see how a Klein ( apart from the cool paint job) of a similar vintage is worth 10-20 times as much.

Image


Last edited by Dr S on Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:11 pm 
King of the Skip Monkeys
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some of the posh Saracen frames ride really well. Only some though.

I had a battered BoTE which was also great to ride.

So thirdeded for Cannondale - I would have thought there would have been more love for the big fat tubes on here.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:12 pm 
The Guv'nor
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Dr S wrote:
I would second Cannondale. I rode my 86 SM600 on sunday for the first time in two years and was pleasantly suprised just how 'modern' it felt. They are really nice frames, super light for starters and the hand sanded welds are really nicely done giving it an almost fillet brazed look. Also the seat and chainstays are beautifully shaped. Really ahead of it's time. Mine used to really turn heads bitd and everyone of my mates wanted one. They were expensive and exclusive back in the mid 80's and were still making nice stuff into the 90's.
I do wonder why they don't have more of a following in the old bike world especially considering how affordable they are now. I certainly cannot see how a Klein ( apart from the cool paint job) of a similar vintage is worth 10-20 times as much.


Agreed, should've extended my analogy to the late 80s stuff too. Had a '93 M1000 which I bought in preference to some other stuff which is far more desirable, S-Works Steel, orange alu o and even an alloy rocky mountain. Curious because other companies had far bigger falls from grace than Cannondale...


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:18 pm 
East Midlands AEC
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khs as a brand


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:24 pm 
Mr Benn
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is it something to do with the brands that were either bought out and changed (Klein) or shut down (Fat) therefore have their mythical status intact, where as Cannondale evolved live and never had the James Dean effect to their brand. And as their ranges got more mainstream and affordable/ competitive against the more every day brands, they're early days high end glory was lost in the ether....?

When you look at it, Cannondale have been pretty incredible in their technological oddity and (pardon the pun) lefty field view.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:36 pm 
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I love that 'James Dean effect' analogy 8)

I think Marin definitely - the Pine Mountain / Eldridge for one is (IME) a cut above most of the ordinary Konas that go for more money. They were always beautifully welded, but the frame design with near-horizontal top tube looks more dated these days.

GT kind of went all over the place, but the continual thread of the Zaskar held things together.

Scott are another one like KHS living in some kind of nowhere land, while Treks were always well-regarded in the day and now appear to have zero love attached...the Toyota of bikes: functional but zero charisma.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 3:58 pm 
The Guv'nor
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Yup, some good points made.

Agree on Trek. Paid buttons for a mid 90s OCLV, probably less than some made in taiwan tange mtb hardtail.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 4:07 pm 
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I can only go on my peceptions of back in the day which was '93 through to '96 and my perception was as follows ;

I rode a Saracen, those I knew and met went 'ugh Saracen', another 'ugh' was Muddy Fox and to a certain extent Raleigh. What most I knew rode bitd with my MTB club, was American metal, Marins being the most popular, then Trek, Scott, GT, Diamond Back and yeah Cannondale. I was the only Saracen rider, riding Brit metal, mind there were a few Oranges as well, never was sure if Orange was American or British though.

One thing I thought of why the ugh' factor, was colour, mine was a lovely classy metallic black, the Ameri bikes were brightly coloured especially the Marins. But when riding, where my Saracen excelled was sheer out and out mud plugging, perhaps the Land-Rover compared to the Jeeps. ( I also had a Series One Land-Rover bitd too).

Perhaps Brit metal looked heavy, or retarded in some way due to colour choice and styling, but it sure wasn't weight, my Saracen was about 26 pounds.


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