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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 7:42 am 
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I've wanted an Explosif since a short while after I declined to trade my '93 Stumpjumper for a '92 Pro back in 1994. Bizarrely I've never managed to find one for sale in the size I want (19") and the year I want (1991 or 1992), but I've continued to search from time to time, I even owned a 2004 for a while, but it was too small (18"), and a lovely 1993 Kilauea (also too small). I figured one would show up eventually.

So today, whilst searching for some good pictures of the decals on a 1990 Explosif for a friend who needs repros made, I stumbled on something quite accidentially, and despite it not being the Explosif I want, managed to buy it and arrange for it to be shipped to me from the other end of Canada.

Some pictures:

Image

Image

Image

Image

So, what I appear to now own is a custom painted 1988 or 1989 TBG Explosif with custom painted Track Two fork. i don't in any way claim to be an expert on these bikes, but I suspect it's a fairly rare beast. There seems to be confusion about the years of the various splatter Konas, and I've seen both the black/pink and seafoam green bikes dated as 1988, 1989 and 1990. There's also a picture on an MTBR thread of a custom painted Explosif (with Track Two) dated by the owner as 1989 that appears to have 1991 style decals on the top tube:

Image.

Now the serial # on the bike does begin T90, but it has seatstay U-brake mounts, and the Shimano grease port BB which I think were 1989 - 1990 Explosifs had Suntour equipment. Tubing decal is Prestige Concept, I think 1990s just had the regular Prestige decal? the 1990 catalogue also suggests that some Explosifs were made in Canada at that time (custom braze-on options offered), does anyone know more about this?


Sooooo, can anyone tell me more about what I have bought? The guy who sold it to me told me that it was painted by a guy called Art Tyler, but no other specific information.

My other quandary is this: the paint is kind of rough in places, faded, and under the BB shell, flaking with some nasty rust. I understand that this is unique piece of mountain bike art, so would it be a crime to strip and repaint? If I was to attempt restoration, how would I go about that?

I look forward to being set straight on everything to do with this bike, Spanky? Anthony?


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:26 pm 
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Don't know anything about the bike, but maybe you can find the original painter (Art Tyler) and commission him to repaint the frame back into its original glory ... thus retaining at least some of its cache ... ?


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:56 pm 
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Interesting find indeed - the paint is in fact by the Art Dept. , who were responsible for the lovely custom finishes on Brodie MTB's at the time (raidan73's Romax is a good example on this site). The frame otherwise appears to be a 1990 (I think) Explosif judging by the serial number?

My guessing is that this might have been en ex TBG employee bike perhaps? I'm just as keen to know more as well :)


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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:25 pm 
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mynchiboy wrote:
Interesting find indeed - the paint is in fact by the Art Dept. , who were responsible for the lovely custom finishes on Brodie MTB's at the time (raidan73's Romax is a good example on this site). The frame otherwise appears to be a 1990 (I think) Explosif judging by the serial number?

My guessing is that this might have been en ex TBG employee bike perhaps? I'm just as keen to know more as well :)


The seller suggested that Art Tyler / Art Dept. were one and the same. He didn't provide any more information about the history of the bike.

Your employee bike theory seems reasonable, I honestly think the paint scheme is kind of ugly, I mean why black/white on the frame and silver on the fork for starters? Beauty in the eye of the beholder and all that, but I don't like it nearly as much as the regular production splatter Konas. I do kind of dig the silver/yellow/blue fade on the other custom shown in my original post, presumably painted by the same person?


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 5:49 pm 
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The forks are that colour because that is a colour of Track Two forks, they are just splattered over, like the frame.

Just to show similar tube decal placement
Image

Same frame, Canti versions came next I guess.

T906...
Could either be 1990 , but more likely a 198'9' June frame.
So a late edition 1989 bike, very close to the or sold for the 1990 Model year.
But things where not well defined back then.


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 7:14 pm 
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Personally I would clean up the rust carefully and touch it up in a flat colour that matches. I wouldn't want to spoil an original paint job.

In my view there are too many over-restored ones around. If you want something that looks like a new bike, buy a new bike!


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2017 11:05 pm 
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hamster wrote:
Personally I would clean up the rust carefully and touch it up in a flat colour that matches. I wouldn't want to spoil an original paint job.

In my view there are too many over-restored ones around. If you want something that looks like a new bike, buy a new bike!


I hear that. I just want to make sure that the corrosion doesn't get any worse. I'd also like to re-decal, not sure if anyone has done new decals for an '89, I know Spanky got repros for his '88 green Explosif.

I wrote the guy I bought it from and he had no other information for me, bike was found languishing in the basement of an apartment building. I think I might write Paul Brodie with the frame number and see if he can shed further light, he was super helpful last time I made contact with him.

Im intrigued about the custom frame feature bit in the catalogue, did they just add options to frames already made in Japan/Taiwan, or would they weld up a frame for you in house alongside the Brodies?

Seller sent me another picture of the bike as he received it, looks tired, but I can see the potential.

Image


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 Post subject: Re:
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:08 am 
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So then is it a Brodie, or a Kona ?


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 Post subject: Re: Re:
PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:38 am 
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k-rod wrote:
So then is it a Brodie, or a Kona ?


:lol:

That same question had crossed my mind. I answered myself this way: Kona's were not asian-made Brodie clones. They had their own character and key features differed from the Brodie branded bikes, what I've noticed particularly are the rear brake cable noodle (much nicer on the Brodies to be honest), and of course the top tube meeting the seat stays at the seat tube, whereas the Brodies have that classic Canadian dropped top tube.

The Rocky Mountains Paul welded up are not called Brodies after all.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2017 10:57 am 
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Well, the thing that makes it's special is the thing you're thinking of removing so...you can do the logic!

From a practical perspective, do get in touch with Kona. They are super-helpful and friendly if you are and whilst they may not have all the answers, they'll certainly show it some love.

This was such a fluid time - as mentioned - and particularly at this point where Kona were getting some traction, partnering (to a degree) with Brodie, it was only natural that there would be a lot of cross-over in everything; design, look, feel. When I look at that signature, the first thing I thought of was Toxic Harold. It looks very, very similar in style and position.

There could be any number of reasons for the look: special employer or affiliate. It might have been a warranty replacement given some extra treatment as a thank you. It might have been a warehouse find a few years later - and therefore quite "old" so tarted up. Most likely I think is that it was special promotional bike, used at trade-fairs or stands, to promote Kona or Brodie or the paint artists...or all three.

Anyway, it's great to see these super-rare, unusual bikes still coming through after so many years. You think you've seen it all, so it's a great reminder that we haven't!


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