No sign of it anywhere. Ian Cammish usually drops me a mail before it comes out but I've heard nothing from him, so here's the second part of my article in full:-
My ‘Magnificent Seven’ best bits of a 1980s time trial bike
Part two – the medal winners.
This follows on from the last issue listing four iconic bits of kit that made the jaws of so many testers drool that Kleenex had to up their production to cope. However, we now come to the top three ‘look and swoon’ items, the very thought of which may well inspire you to trawl through eBay retro bike sites or at the very least, bring such a smile of contented memories to your face that the wife starts checking your text messages trying to locate unrecognised ladies names!
The ‘bronze medal’ third-placed goes to not one, but a selection of components, the very name of which sends drool down the skinsuit …. Clement silks!
The ‘Seta’ No. 3 was the choice of many (including yours truly) with it’s red label but for those special days, just seeing your rims shod with the green label of the ‘Seta Extra’ No. 1 inspired you to produce your best. The sound of these (especially on concrete roads) was just like somebody tearing a 25-mile long strip of linen next to your ears.
Unfortunately, a puncture usually meant the end, for it would be a very brave man that pinned his hopes on a 1cm piece of latex being held onto the tyre with rubber solution to hold back 130psi of air for an hour.
Whilst these didn’t really last too long, I did have a pair of the ‘Ones’ that did and noted a strange side effect – they actually got bigger with age! They eventually ballooned out to about 28mm wide making my CX18 rims look like hula-hoops. Superb bits of kit.
Runner up position for the silver medal was something that looked so ‘100% right’ for a time trial bike that it’s impracticality was easily outweighed just by looks … the Modolo Kronos brake levers.
Made from black plastic and beautifully shaped, these came with rubber hoods used by …. hardly anybody.
They were almost impossible to hold on the tops, had weird red plastic inserts at the front (which everybody eventually lost and taped over), made braking hard work but despite this, they were just so good to look at that we all bought them whilst convincing ourselves that the micro-weight saving and aerodynamic efficiency of about 0.00001% made it worthwhile.
And so, as voted unanimously by this panel of one, the best time trial component of the 1980s was ….. the Cinelli M71 pedal!
Minimalist in appearance, but with the distinct advantage of not using clips and straps, even before the first Look pedal was invented, these were a must. Universally dubbed as the ‘poser pedals’, so posers we all became.
Had Cinelli done a bit more with a better finish and ti spindles, these could have stayed around long after their demise but whilst the principal was innovative, the few problems that they had (including cleats that didn’t lock in if one micron of dust got into the slide-channel and a quick release that was supposed to let you out if you fell …. but always failed to do so) didn’t really matter. Once you were in, you were virtually nailed to your pedals with no chance of getting out, so you may just as well go as fast as you can until the end … truly the most exclusive bit of any 1980s time trial bike.
So, there they are; my Magnificent Seven.
Other items I considered were the whole of the Dura Ace AX and
600 AX groupsets but although there was some nice stuff in there (notably the brake calipers), they would have just made a Top 10, along with the Dia Compe aero calipers and possibly the Huret Jubilee rear mech, but you can’t get excited by something that is made to slow you down or something that’s spelt ‘Hurr-ett’ and pronounced ‘Yoo-Ray’, can you?
Old enough to know better!