Vintage Bicycles Done Proper :: Corvallis, Oregon
When I think of my most cherished bicycles, my 1985 Pinarello Record quickly comes to the forefront of my mind.
I wish I could say that I was behind the full-on, tear down restoration of this beauty, but I am not. This was purchased restored and complete before I started down the path of revitalizing bicycles. However, even if it is not mine, the work that was put into this bicycle is worth showcasing, as time seems to have a way of forgetting what, exactly, went on unless it is documented.
Before this purchase, I owned a handful of decent bicycles. However, I had fallen deeply in love with the craftsmanship of Italian frames and felt a solid collection needed a capstone piece. When I saw the ad for a “Pristine Pinarello road bike,” I knew this was what I was seeking.
The ad read:
This is a pristine bike that has had meticulous care and maintenance. It has never been crashed or otherwise abused. I had this bike completely stripped and repainted to Pinarello factory specs by Dave Wilburn of Southern California. He also applied an original factory decal kit and then covered everything with a final clear coat for beauty and durability. The paint is almost perfect and the chrome has no rust. The decals are flawless. The front Pinarello head tube badge has some light scratching.
I contacted Gita Bike, the Pinarello importer, to research the year of this bike. Their closest estimate, based on the serial number, was the late ’80s.
The bike not only has some elements (both good and bad) to highlight, it also has a rather muddy past when it comes to the model identification. The seller had the serial number but could not track down much info about it, even after contacting the importer. It doesn’t surprise me. So many of these Italian bicycles, of all different builders, may have serial numbers but information about them is somehow lost once they leave the care of the craftsman’s hands.
The seller sold this as a Pinarello Traviso, but the mid-’80s Travisos had only the right chain stay chromed, the Record had both. To further confuse, the Pinarello signature on the top tube didn’t arrive until 1986/7, plus Columbus SLX tubing was not yet being incorporated. All of this points to a Pinarello Record in Traviso’s clothing. Meaning, the wrong decals were applied during the restoration.
When I acquired the bike, a few elements were changed right away. Those being mainly aesthetic items like the saddle and seat post. Both of which didn’t match in the least. Also, added were Shimano pedals. The jury is still out on the pedals and saddle. There is also work yet to be done, mainly in the cockpit area. The Easton ergo bars are comfortable and, although they seem to clash a bit with the bike compared with traditional drops, I do like them. However, the Profile Design stem is what I could only describe as godawful and my search for a more period-appropriate pantographed Pinarello stem is in full swing.
Of course, to me, these are only minor flaws and parts are easily swapped out. Plus, there are so many other characteristics of this bicycle that have me swooning. The paint, for instance, is a screaming, “notice me” Ferrari red. This is not really my personality type to have such a loud color, but I can’t help but love the attention it occasionally brings. Also sublime are the decals. This is something you typically do not see with ’80s Pinarellos that still sport their original paint and decals. The decals of that decade are known for their delicacy and typically started degrading quickly.
Although the restoration touched every part of this bike, there was one, single element that was left original and intact. That was the head badge and this is a detail which I fully appreciate the original owner leaving as a nod to its history.
The Pinarello is one that I don’t take out much. It’s hanging on its own uncluttered spot, locked up (just in case) with a painters drop cloth over it. It hasn’t seen a trickle of rain on my watch, nor does it ever get taken through the stop-and-go and potholes of the city. I am certain I do a good job painting a picture of a garage queen or wall art but don’t be too quick to assume. I know better. I wouldn’t do such a thing. A bicycle needs to be ridden and this one is no exception. Her specialty is fast, pedal-mashing, quad-busting training rides on already warm summer mornings. Or on very late afternoons, after work, when the heat is dying back and I need a spin session of an hour in the saddle and 20 miles on the open road.
The way I see it is at the time, this was the upper echelon of serious, pro-quality cycling technology, so I don’t ever have any reluctance in holding back when she is out. I know the frame can handle anything I can throw at it. The same goes for the drivetrain, wheels, brakes, and other moving components.
So, I attack the ride as hard as it will allow me to and return home weak and utterly punished.
That is exactly what this bike is meant for.
Color: Team Red
Frame Size: 57cm (C-T) seat post & 56cm (C-C) top tube
Frame/Drop-outs: Columbus SL
Fork: Columbus SL
Headset: Chris King
Handlebars: Easton EC70 Ergo Carbon; White Cinelli cork bar tape
Stem: Profile Design H2O
Saddle: Fizik Arione
Seat Post: Campagnolo C-Record (Aero type)
Crankset: Campagnolo Centaur; 53/39, 170mm
Cassette: 10-Speed Campagnolo Centaur (13/26)
Hubs: Campagnolo Neutron (32 hole; Campagnolo skewers)
Front Derailleur: Campagnolo Centaur
Rear Derailleur: Campagnolo Centaur
Shifting/Brake Levers: Campagnolo Centaur (Campagnolo housing/cables)
Brakes: Campagnolo Daytona; Campagnolo pads
Rims: Campagnolo Nucleon (Clincher)
Tires: Continental Grand Prix 4000; 700c x 23″
Pedals: Shimano PD-R540
Special Features: Gorgeous Italian lug work and pantographing; Campagnolo dropouts; Chromed rear chain/seat stays
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