1990 Raleigh Dyna Tech Cronos Titanium (56)


Retrobike Rider
Gold Trader
A story which I’ve already told on here, detailing how I ordered one of these from new sometime around late 1990 from my local Raleigh dealer. A short version of the story is that it took so long for me to save the £649 in 1990/91 that by the time the shop owner decided I’d paid enough capital to order the frameset (coupled with Raleigh’s 12 week build time as they were special order), I’d missed the boat and they built me the next model. It was pretty, and it was Titanium tubed, but it wasn’t a wishbone stay, and it wasn’t 3/2.5 Reynolds Titanium either. I was young, naive, and pretty clueless about what to do with the situation other than suck it up and put the bike together with all the components I had amassed. The result was disappointing, and not what was promised. The bike was soon sold, and I spent the next 30 years looking for the original frameset I ordered.
A few years back now, I did actually manage to find one that looked in a bad way, and it was a tiny tad too small for what I should be riding, although I could make it work at a stretch. That bike came with a very tired Dura Ace 7400 groupset, and I felt it deserved to retain it. I restored the group, and tuned it appropriately along the way, making it lighter, and brighter! That bike brought me great pleasure, but it wasn’t quite what I’d wanted all those years back, so the hunt resumed, albeit with greater precision.
Finally, at the back end of 2023 I stumbled across one that looked pretty clean, and in the all important size of 56cm. I didn’t really have a figure in mind that I’d pay for it, so I put a ridiculously high bid on it to ensure that I was the winner. I think its eventual sale value was marred by the reluctance to post it, and its remote location. Now, on a map, Dalbeattie seems an average drive up the M6 just past Carlisle, and along the coast a little. I planned to go one night after work (with the excuse I was working late), so as not to arouse suspicion that ‘another’ bike was coming. Four hours there, and four hours back! I was exhausted, but elated, carefully hiding the bike in the small hours of the morning.
The next day, I pulled both bikes out to make some comparisons.

Here’s a picture from the eBay listing…


Then the comparison…




The 56cm is AA1579


The 54cm is AA1589


Back when I restored the 54cm, I had to strip all the steel tubes are they were discoloured, and covered in surface rust spots. Careful late night work with a dremel finally got it back to clean steel. The choice of paint colour was really difficult, because I had very little reference to guide me. Any pictures in the brochure were the size of a stamp! I spent weeks observing cars, looking for something I thought would match up close to the original. Finally, I decided on a Land Rover colour, that’s a very subtle light grey. Up next to the unrestored one, it’s almost unrecognisable that they’re different colours. Also, copying the decals was something that I had to guess with. The end result is pretty convincing, and fairly close to the original.

I stripped the new bike of all its components this week, so I can clean it, and sympathetically bring the paint back to life before building it back up with a period correct groupset. I really don’t want to paint this one because it’s so original, but I will have to feather in some paint here and there to protect the tiny sections of bare metal.




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It won’t be Dura Ace as it would be too similar to the other, plus that was never what I wanted or had back in 1990. I was strictly Campagnolo, so it’ll be C Record, with a small degree of improvement.
Excellent, that would be my first choice too. Delta brakes would look fab….?
Can’t wait to see it progress!
I posted a few pics up on the Raleigh Restoration FB page, and one of Raleigh’s original SBDU team who worked on these has come back with this information…

“Okay, so the frame in the picture is a Cronos. Built in SBDU to specific customer order, hence the SB numbers. It is one from the early days of Dyna-Tech but not the earliest.
The main tubes are Titanium 325, the rear stays are Reynolds 753 put together with cast a aluminium yoke and seat joint. The lugs are bulge formed, polished and anodised aluminium which were made to our specifications by Eisho Seisakusho in Japan.
The plastic and alloy rings were added as a production amendment to ensure the adhesive was retained in the joint until curing was completed.
The forks are also Reynolds 753 and feature a Cinelli cast fork crown.
All the tubes were painted before the frame was assembled.
The silver ‘BS6102’ decal confirms that it left the factory as a frameset not an assembled bicycle.
I can’t recall how many we actually made but my guess would be less than 50.
The wishbone/monospar was built for a 126mm O.L.D. however, increasing demand for 130mm width made us discontinue as it was quite fragile. (Think chicken’s wishbone).
The Cronos was continued but with twin rear stays and Metal Matrix main tubes.”
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