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Late 1950s Girardengo Twin Bar Road Bike - Made in Italy

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Gary Mc

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
OK, so I made a purchase truly out of character for me and I know it is something not a lot of my CABE friends will follow but going to post it here anyway so at least I can keep track of my progress on it. Number one it is not made in the good ole USA and number two it is a road bike.

This last year I realized I have to get some weight off at 252 lbs. and 6 ft. tall so I need to ride a lot more. At 52 years old I am out of shape & time to face it head on. I live in a very hilly area where a heavy single speed doesn't cut it so I needed something lightweight with some gearing but it had to be "vintage". I thought of buying a lightweight Schwinn bike like SirMike1983's 1947 Schwinn New World lightweight and then I saw CABE member Jackomeano's late 1950's Girardengo road bike and fell in love with it. The twin top bar frame, the magnificent lug work, 1950's Italian styling, good carmine red paint, and decent graphics including an Olympic Rings logo (I love the Olympics) for a 1950's era bike to me were absolutely beautiful. Never thought I'd find one but started looking at ebay and low & behold jackomeano's Girardengo showed up. I knew he loved the bike so was surprised it was for sale. Anyway I bought it at a very good price.

My next issue with buying another bike right now was my Wife!!!!!! With three projects going on I knew my wife was going to kill me but I actually got away with buying this one by using the exercise excuse which in reality is true. She would definitely like to see me get a little healthier. So, she didn't kill me, thank God & no argument over the purchase of this one!!!!!!

As many of you know I can't leave things alone, it has to be me or more appropriate set up for my tastes. This bike has had most of it's components changed out over the years to newer or new items. The only things left from the fifties are the frame, fork, and rear Campagnolo Sport derailleur. I will be changing all the components out over time as money permits to vintage Campagnolo items from the fifties or at least sixties era. It will get & retain some modern items though as this bike will be ridden often. To me this bike is truly a work of Italian styling art so all changes will bear that in mind to insure it retains that character. Here are my build plans as of today subject to change.

What stays the same:
  • Frame & paint - will be taken apart over the winter & thoroughly cleaned & polished
  • New stem & handlebars - I like them, think they look cool, & they are very comfortable so they will not be going back vintage
  • Brakes & levers - It has Universal Super 68 brakes, excellent stopping power for safety so I am not changing them. Levers are Mountain Bike style and comfortable to use so far now they are staying unless I find something vintage I just love.
  • Rear Derailleur - Has a fifties Campagnolo Sport which it will retain. It just needs a good cleaning & servicing.

Here's what get's replaced or added with brand new items & where I am not worried about vintage. These items are about safety, comfort, and yes, style:
  • Saddle - Will be changed to a new Brooks B17 & I already bought a really special one
  • Grips - Will be changed to new Brooks plump leather grips to match the saddle
  • Saddlebag - Did not have one but either a Brooks or Gyes to match the saddle
  • Lights - Will be getting CatEye LEDs for safety, I WANT to be seen.
  • Computer - This one will get a CatEye Commuter computer to log my miles
  • Tires & Tubes - Schwalbe Delta Cruiser "cream" 700x35c tires & Schwalbe tubes (ordered & on their way)
  • Rims - 700c TBD, debating on this item & seriously considering wood in the form of Ghisallo Sport carbon fiber lined. This decision will come down the road, for now it will retain the aluminum rims that came on it.

Here's what will be replaced with 1950's/early 1960's vintage Campagnolo components:
  • Pedals - These have been purchased off ebay & I'll show what I got in another post
  • Hubs - Want to find some large flange hubs from the fifties
  • Headset - One on it has issues
  • BB crank & chainring
  • Shifter

What will not be retained on the bike:
  • Ardex Solid chainguard - I love this item but it was not original to this bike but I am keeping it for a custom build down the road.

Here's Pics of the bike as received:

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Here's the Ardex chain guard Jackomeano had on the bike that will re-purposed to a custom build. It is really cool :cool: but just does not fit my plans for this bike.

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Gary Mc

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
First new item - Brooks B17 Saddle

Here's my first change/purchase for this bike. To me this saddle is truly a work of art in itself. It is a Brooks Saddles Select B17 "World Traveller 2012" Special Edition saddle (Organic Leather). The edition was limited to 2012 saddles with only 250 slated for the USA. Feel lucky to find one. Felt a 2012 saddle was appropriate since I purchased the bike in December 2012. From Brooks Saddles website:

"This saddle celebrates our deep historical associations with the sporting heroes of the previous London Olympiad, as well as our rich relationship with devotees of Long Distance Touring, during the inaugural WCR Grand Tour (www.worldcycleracing.com), a competitive circumnavigation of the Earth by bicycle. The leather surface features a restyling of a piece by Frank Patterson, artist and illustrator of the Brooks catalogues of the 1920's, realized by Richard Phipps. All saddles have been made using Brooks Select organic leather tops, fixed to a chromed copper steel frame and finished with hand hammered copper rivets. The B17 Select World Traveller is available at chosen Brooks Dealers Of Excellence from May, and production of the Brooks B17 Select World Traveller has been capped at 2012 pieces."

Length: 275mm
Width: 175mm
Height: 65mm
Weight: 540g
Frame: Copper Plated​

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Gary Mc

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Vintage CAMPAGNOLO Record pedals mod #1037 w/ strap loops (1958-1967)

Vintage CAMPAGNOLO Record pedals mod #1037 w/ strap loops (1958-1967)

Here's the first vintage Campagnolo item purchased for the bike to replace the plastic black pedals on the bike with correct era vintage Campagnolo items. These were purchased off ebay & are absolutely gorgeous.

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SirMike1983

Riding a '38 Autocycle Deluxe
Brooks always makes great stuff. I have three Brooks saddles and love them all.


Here's my first change/purchase for this bike. To me this saddle is truly a work of art in itself. It is a Brooks Saddles Select B17 "World Traveller 2012" Special Edition saddle (Organic Leather). The edition was limited to 2012 saddles with only 250 slated for the USA. Feel lucky to find one. Felt a 2012 saddle was appropriate since I purchased the bike in December 2012. From Brooks Saddles website:

"This saddle celebrates our deep historical associations with the sporting heroes of the previous London Olympiad, as well as our rich relationship with devotees of Long Distance Touring, during the inaugural WCR Grand Tour (www.worldcycleracing.com), a competitive circumnavigation of the Earth by bicycle. The leather surface features a restyling of a piece by Frank Patterson, artist and illustrator of the Brooks catalogues of the 1920's, realized by Richard Phipps. All saddles have been made using Brooks Select organic leather tops, fixed to a chromed copper steel frame and finished with hand hammered copper rivets. The B17 Select World Traveller is available at chosen Brooks Dealers Of Excellence from May, and production of the Brooks B17 Select World Traveller has been capped at 2012 pieces."

Length: 275mm
Width: 175mm
Height: 65mm
Weight: 540g
Frame: Copper Plated​

IMG_1859_zpsfe77ccc3-1.jpg


IMG_1854_zps968e0d7a-1.jpg


IMG_1863_zps3aa85649-1.jpg
 

jackomeano

Finally riding a big boys bike
Girardengo

Thats great you have a lot of vintage parts for the bicycle...
And I m happy your happy with your Ebay purchase!
But, the head stem and the buttom bracket is org for that frame( Gnutti) the rear hub Is super 3 piece gnutti I have a front 3 piece large flange iif your looking!

Ok the crank is from a Maino around 58 -65 Is a close look for org equipment.
Even tho This bicycle came with a Stermuy archer 3 speed rear hub.

But I and almost everyone one the cable hasnt seen one Girardengo like that before goodluck and keep pedaling
 

Gary Mc

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Thats great you have a lot of vintage parts for the bicycle...
And I m happy your happy with your Ebay purchase!
But, the head stem and the buttom bracket is org for that frame( Gnutti) the rear hub Is super 3 piece gnutti I have a front 3 piece large flange iif your looking!

Ok the crank is from a Maino around 58 -65 Is a close look for org equipment.
Even tho This bicycle came with a Stermuy archer 3 speed rear hub.

But I and almost everyone one the cable hasnt seen one Girardengo like that before goodluck and keep pedaling

Thanks jackomeano. I should have asked if you knew what was original to the bike. Wish I could find a catalog page on it, can find very little info online. Now you have me rethinking what gets replaced & maybe going back with a Sturmey Archer 3-speed. If the head stem & bottom bracket are original, I will probably leave them alone, less money to spend..... A lot to think about with my plans!!!!! Thanks again
 

sam

I live for the CABE
The Tang/Levy steel headset is a high-quality copy of a Campy headset.
Also real wood rims have braking problems to deal with.Mavic model 58 look vintage.Also Universal model61 leavers on mustache bars/taped and shellac would look nice
 
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