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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:41 pm 
B.o.T.M. Winner / Feature Bike
B.o.T.M. Winner / Feature Bike
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 3:26 pm
Posts: 6191
Location: Tilting at windmills and shouting at the rain.
Just had delivery of a frame that was outed on 'ebay watch' yet still only managed £150 - one in the face for all those who say outing inflates prices. As was mentioned in the thread, it looked like a Manitou frame, but had Manitou 1s and gussets.

Well I thought i'd have a punt on it and contacted the seller, asking for a few more photos and where it'd got it from. He was a really nice chap and told me that he'd got it years ago from (now I hope I'm going to get this right..) his mates boss who ran a motocross/observed trials team. They used this frame to check out the course before riding it. His boss had been apparently given it by Doug Bradbury, who was also into observed trials and motocross. Apparently it was 1 of 2 proto frames made. Well I always take things like this with a pinch of salt, but having received the frame it has a strange mix of bits from Manitou and Answer frames which sort of suggests that it is a very early Manitou FS.

First off it has front end gussets, only seen on Bradbury Manitou frames, rather than Answer ones and the head tube is very long and the top tube slopes (this is an 18" frame). Also the ring reinforced headtube has odd sized rings, top is smaller than the bottom like Bradbury rather than Answer:

Image

Next it has Bradbury Manitou rear end rather than Answer Manitou 1s. Very different anodising and 'hand made' apperance:

Image

Image

The rear sus clamp is odd as it is upside down compared to Answer ones, also the drop outs are very Bradbury rather than Answer, no replaceable drop out and are semi horizontal with amazing welds. EDIT Thanks to Andrewl, the dropout width is 145mm:

Image

The seat clamp looks very Manitou:

Image

but the rear CNCed pivot looks different to Answer ones:

Image


It's headset is 1 1/4' which rules out a number of other manus like Marin or Balance etc, also it came with a Ringle seatpost (with a hand machined and tweaked head). Finally it doesn't have the 'ANSWER PRODUCTS' serial number on the base - did later Bradbury's have serial numbers? And most importantly, despite having had a tough life it has NO CRACKS!!!! The alloy seemed to be totally different to the Answer ones I've seen, and I sold and replaced loads of them in the early 90s


So come on everyone, what is it? Manitou? Answer Manitou, Marin. I know what I think but I'd love to know what you think?


Last edited by pete_mcc on Thu Apr 03, 2008 4:18 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:46 pm 
B.o.T.Y. Winner / Gold Trader
B.o.T.Y. Winner / Gold Trader
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Joined: Thu Oct 27, 2005 11:00 am
Posts: 5223
Location: York
Balance ?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:47 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Joined: Sat Jan 27, 2007 10:35 pm
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Location: The desolate flats of Cambridgeshire
Looks alot better condition in your pics than it looked in the ebay ad. very nice indeed.

Cant help with the ID im affraid, I just wanted to congratulate you on bagging a stunning looking frame.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:53 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 1:12 am
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Location: Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Whats the rear hub spacing?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:58 pm 
B.o.T.M. Winner / Feature Bike
B.o.T.M. Winner / Feature Bike
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 3:26 pm
Posts: 6191
Location: Tilting at windmills and shouting at the rain.
retrobikeguy wrote:
Balance ?


It's the wrong headset size for them and too early with the forks, they only used Manitou 2s onwards from what I can find.


Andrewl wrote:
Whats the rear hub spacing?


Good call! Just measured it and it is 145mm!!! That sort of suggests one thing really......


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:59 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 1:12 am
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Location: Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
Comparing to the Manitou in the Superbikes in Greece article (see archive), I'd say it a pre answer Manitou frame but newer than the one in that article as the chainstay appears to be a development of the one in that article.


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 4:02 pm 
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
retrobike rider / Gold Trader
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Location: The desolate flats of Cambridgeshire
http://www.firstflightbikes.com/1991_Manitou.htm may show some clues...such as....

http://www.firstflightbikes.com/images/BradSeat.JPG


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 4:03 pm 
Retro Guru
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Joined: Fri Sep 22, 2006 1:12 am
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Location: Hobart, Tasmania, Australia
90mm bottom bracket shell too?


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 4:10 pm 
B.o.T.M. Winner / Feature Bike
B.o.T.M. Winner / Feature Bike
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 3:26 pm
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Location: Tilting at windmills and shouting at the rain.
andrewl wrote:
90mm bottom bracket shell too?


Bugger, yes! I really hadn't thought this one through, it's going to take an age to source these parts....


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PostPosted: Thu Apr 03, 2008 4:17 pm 
B.o.T.M. Winner / Feature Bike
B.o.T.M. Winner / Feature Bike
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Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 3:26 pm
Posts: 6191
Location: Tilting at windmills and shouting at the rain.
Andrewl has solved it!

Is is a Bradbury Manitou frame:


http://www.retrobike.co.uk/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=5079&g2_serialNumber=1&g2_GALLERYSID=f6d11379e8122a4fa3d6a051ae8e5e47


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