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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 4:01 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2009 11:13 pm
Posts: 9730
Location: Skipton
Just found this old chap feeling sorry for himself in Halifax. Cash was exchanged and I've brought him back home to chill out with his Orange chums.

On first inspection he seems to be a tired 89/90 with a mix and match of mince parts. Looking a little closer though and there's a few stickers that prick my interest a little more.

As you can see below it has a 'Prototype' decal on the top tube in the correct font. This is followed by a 'Hand Built' on the seat tube, a 'Prestige' on the seat stay, some thing I can't read on the chain stay that is the same style as those on the Formula and to finish off the forks have 'Prestige' decals on them. It also does not have a serial number :? :o

Chap I got it from said he's already asked Orange and they had said it was a hand built prototype but I think I'll contact them directly to find out exactly what's going on here. Maybe they were trying a Prestige rear on a Clockwork front? Maybe they were trying a new geometry (it seems more upright then others from the period)? Maybe it's just a load of old pants and nothing special?

I'll investigate and report back :D


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Last edited by brocklanders023 on Wed Feb 08, 2012 8:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 4:03 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2009 11:13 pm
Posts: 9730
Location: Skipton
Few more...


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 4:34 pm 
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Joined: Fri May 21, 2010 6:08 pm
Posts: 418
Location: U K
what a restoration job! - what are you going to do with it?
Seems like a potentially very interesting frame / bike.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 4:47 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2010 8:38 am
Posts: 2679
Location: Norfolkshire
WOW, what a find and something that has an air of mystery about it. Now dont get me wrong, but if you went down the route of a total restore you would loose an awful lot of the history and character of the bike, partial restore retaining decals and the like would be better option, but this is my opinion, this one doesnt need to look Box Fresh.

Anyway great bike i will watch and wait for more info to emerge on this treasure :)

Jussa :)


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 5:16 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2009 11:13 pm
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Location: Skipton
Don't worry, the original decals and paint will stay. I'll assess the condition after a proper degrease and clean but at most I'll touch up the decals/paint.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 6:07 pm 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Tue Dec 21, 2010 10:03 pm
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Location: Birkenhead
8)

Great project to get stuck into is that...

Love the PROTOTYPE decals as well :D


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 6:10 pm 
Old School Grand Master
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Joined: Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:10 am
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Location: Heathfield, East Sussex
Lucky find, lucky b*gger... 8)

Really don't have room for any more bikes but I'd make an exception for this one in the same circumstances!


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 6:16 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2010 11:27 pm
Posts: 1421
Location: mid cheshire
this is screaming out for a rat look resto...

kill the rust to stop it becoming terminal, tidy any rough edges of the decals then preserve it all under a good clear coat to prevent further deterioration.

finish with lots of NOS / shiny goodies (early xt or even better a full suntour group for added rarity bonus points) & it could well be the king of the clockworks.

agree with the prototype decal - it just looks awesome!


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 6:26 pm 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Sun Sep 23, 2007 11:22 pm
Posts: 7306
Location: Hove
I don't see any reason to doubt that it is a prototype, built in Halifax rather than Taiwan, probably by Steve Wade himself.

We have seen before that the Halifax-built prototypes lacked serial numbers, and this seems logical to me. You use serial numbers for control purposes in a big factory, and for identification purposes in the event of a warranty claim. This wasn't built to be sold and it was built in a batch of one.

Of course the only problem about building up a prototype is that you don't know what lessons he learned from it. 'This didn't work, that didn't work, and the other didn't work, so I'd better fix all that before we try to sell any.' But as a museum piece, ideal.

I expect Steve Wade was also the test rider, so that's another nice bit of history to hang on the bike.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 7:26 pm 
retrobike rider
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Joined: Fri Aug 08, 2008 2:36 pm
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Location: Yorkshire, England
from the sticker, like you say it could be a test to see exactly what a Prestige rear end was doing and if it was worth it. or vice versa, the main triangle of a prestige worth it.

ask that chap on here (i forget the person but a search should bring it up, try looking for the 'formula' thread) who knows quite a bit about the early stuff.


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