Colnago Super/Super Piu (92-96?)

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Jake1

Look Ma, No Hands!
Here is a bike I recently purchased; the most I have spent on a single bike as a whole thus far, but I had some spare cash and the deal seemed good.

I believe it to be a Super Piu circa '92-'93. I could not find a Colnago catalog image for '93, '95, or '96. I only think that it may be from '92-'93 because it seems to match (as best as I can tell) the '92 catalog image. Unfortunately, after looking at some Colnago catalogs I find them hard to trust. In the '94 catalog it shows a Super Piu which fits the general features of the frame, but in the description it states Tange tubing while in the photo there is clearly a Columbus decal on the frame! The C94 is Columbus tubing, but frame features do not match. So how do I really know what is accurate; could be erroneous in description or photo. In the '91 catalog the Super Piu has the rear brake cable entering and exiting from the top of the top tube; the '92 catalog shows it routing in the same manner as on my bike (entering at the bottom of the tube in front and exiting from the top of the tube in the rear). The '97 catalog shows no Super model at all so I assume it to be '92-'96 without having access to the rest of the catalogs during that time period. I assume it was bought as a frame since it has what appears to be Campagnolo Record shifters/brake levers and pedals, but essentially Chorus everywhere else (new and old parts). I purchased it without wheels, but test rode it with a set from another bike to verify that there was no significant frame problems that were not visible. The headset has a spacer which may indicate a fork replacement (longer steerer tube than original?), or stack height wrong for that fork. No sign of any damage on the frame other than minor scuffs and chips. It rides just fine, and I am waiting for a wheelset (Campagnolo Vento full wheelset w/cassette, and a spare Shamal wheel). Seller was asking $700 for the bike; paid $550. Wheels total $275. I would be curious if anyone has a similar model and knows what year/model they have.
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Jesper

Finally riding a big boys bike
Thanks for the heads-up @Kombicol !
Jake you provided some very good photos of the frame details that really save a lot of time and trouble. I wish Colnago had done that in their own catalogs for what they are worth. What you mentioned about the Columbus decal on the frame's image example being in contradiction with the Tange tubing in the description is not a one time anomaly with Colnago catalogs; they make me cringe!

Those lugs on the head tube have cutouts similar to some late 80s frames, and the seat stay cap was definitely being used by at least 1988 and possibly by 1987 for the 88 model year frames. The frame that was using the internal cable routing with the "Piu" designation was the Master Piu in the late 80s, the Super did not get that designation until some time in the early 90s (maybe as early as 90 since the 91 catalog has the Super Piu model listed). If you have referenced the 91 & 92 catalogs then I would certainly agree with your assessment for the earliest model year being as 92 given that specific cable routing in relation to your frame (then again we have to trust THOSE CATALOGS as being accurate!). If you can match the paint scheme to an available catalog that might pinpoint the actual model year of the frame. The Columbus decal even though an earlier version (early/mid 80s and later) without the tubing designation was used for many years; sometimes to denote a mixed tubing frame (SL & SP/ SLX & SPX), but that would generally occur on a much larger frame (58cm+) and/or a custom built frame. Your fork (if original) and headset issue may be an indicator of a custom frame (or at least a custom fork) if someone wanted to be able to have a higher bar profile with a limited height stem. The rider could gain a couple cm's of height without having the stem extended past its minimum insertion mark. That would not be improbable if wanting to use a specific stem that wasn't available with an extra long quill. You could easily order a fork with a longer steerer if desired.

Most of the parts seem to be early to mid 90s so depending on what is original to the bike it would help with the dating; it appears previous owner(s) tried to keep within the proper period when replacing/renewing parts. Killer monoplanar brakes (early 90s; need to verify with a catalog)! Rear mech is a later (mid-late 90s; again, need to verify with a catalog) Chorus model with the hidden lower pivot bolt. Nice pedals (late 80s-very early 90s), SGRs, self levelling. I believe their first clipless style before going to Campy badged LOOK pedals in the 90s. Your seat post might be a Croce d'Aune; not sure since a couple others are similar, but with the engraved logo it should be either CdA or Chorus (maybe even Victory). I think the CdA version had splines internally and may have been lighter than the Chorus version; both post circa late 80s-early 90s (Victory gone by the late 80s). Wheels are mid 90s depending on the logo design.
Overall a very good buy for the $. Value w/o the wheels is probably about $800 give or take $100; the seller certainly wasn't trying to high-ball the price at a reasonable $700. I'd have advertised it under $1000 ($900ish) and hoped for $800ish if I was selling it. The paint appears decent except the BB shell (is that a plastic sheet under the cables?) which doesn't show anyways; but I would paint it up under there to protect from rust.
Was the previous owner the original buyer of it when new?
Update us when you get it all together for a ride.
 

Jake1

Look Ma, No Hands!
Thank you @Jesper
I won't be able to ride it for awhile (April?) until the snow clears. I find the information you provided very informative. Hopefully I can find a catalog or member paint job match for it to better gauge its age. I do not plan on making any major changes to it; maybe a different saddle, but won't know 'til ridden. Also, I would need cleats for those pedals and maybe specific shoes or adaptors for my present shoes which are for older style only have bolt pattern for standard cage cleats, or 'newer' style for Look 3 bolt pattern. I do have some older Look pedals that are blue and I already have cleats and shoes for them so Campagnolo pedala nifht nor get used for initial riding. Crank length and stem length are fine for me. I have not checked date codes on cranks yet. Also, I'll check seat post features and post photos for possible ID.
I have learned about dating Campagnolo hubs; the rear one is 1995; front hub I can't make out so need my eye loupe to read it (can't find my loupe!). Also, forgot to mention: the Vento wheelset has clincher rims, the Shamal front rim is for tubular tires. Is that a big deal? I am not concerned with having to carry a different spare for each, just didn't know if there would be an odd ride feeling or handling. I am not well versed in tubulars so trekking into unknown territory there.
 

Jesper

Finally riding a big boys bike
Again, good detailed photos showing all aspects of the seat post. I really cannot determine its model. You have distinct features of the engraved logo, splined tube, and chromed/bevelled clamp bolt which one would think to be enough to provide a reasonable guesstimate as to its type. I will need to look at my know Victory and Chorus (?generation) seat posts to compare it to. I now think my Victory was also splined, but not sure if that was do to it being for an ALAN/Guerciotti frame using only a 25.0mm diameter post. Wider posts may not have needed, or have had the splines (just a guess). I know I also have a Chorus post, but it seems different if I recall; no "shield" logo and "Campagnolo" written with banding lines above and below located below the aero tapered section. It may be an earlier version. The problem is that Campy changed CdA into Chorus on some components in the 90s making it difficult to differentiate the two. I did a quick search of the Velobase site's Campy aero posts, but there really isn't a proper set of comprehensive photos (like yours) to do a proper comparison. Also, there appears to be some contention amongst submitted examples as to their validity regarding model identification. I am definitely not a Campy expert when it comes to post (1988 and later) early Record/Nuovo Record/Super Record stuff (1988 and later). Pretty safe saying that your cranks are Chorus, but I have no idea what the "31" date code indicates. My cranks are dated "93" and "A3" on two sets. each set having only one arm (same arm, but not sure if drive or left arm) with either the "93" or "A3" stamp. I assumed (possibly incorrectly) that they were 1993 year of manufacture. I will take some photos of my cranks and seat posts once I dig them out to compare likenesses and differences to yours.
 

Jake1

Look Ma, No Hands!
Cool, thanks for the 'best guesses". My cranks have "31" on both of them so I guess that at least means they are the same year. Is there are chart of some sort showing what codes match to what year. I found some for shimano and sun tour parts when researching them, but the only thing I have seen for Campagnolo stuff is for very early parts from the 70s and earlier; once into the 80s there seems to be disagreement as to what code corresponds to what year. Maybe I'll try contacting Campagnolo and see if they can shed some light on the topic. I would assume by now that others have already attempted that, but maybe never published their findings; I will share what I learn. I have contacted Colnago regarding the frame model, but as yet I have received no response from them. I had no means of submitting a photo(s) when I sent my message. I didn't have any photos posted at the time so I couldn't provide a link.
 
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