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Any advice re: '98 Bianchi Eros with Campy Avanti / Mirage??(2 posts)

Any advice re: '98 Bianchi Eros with Campy Avanti / Mirage??sgp
Mar 24, 2003 9:54 AM
A local dealer has some unused '98 Bianchi Eros with lug frame and shaped tubes which is okay with me, but I am concerned about Campy Avanti front derailleur & brakes - anyone know about this stuff? I also heard that Mirage rear derailleur was much improved in '00/'01? Price is right, $600, versus $1100 for an '03 (carbon fiber front fork slopped top tube) or $900 for an '02 (steel and horiz tube). Thanks!
re: Any advice re: '98 Bianchi Eros with Campy Avanti / Mirage??Fred the Cross Poser
Mar 25, 2003 9:29 AM
I have the 98 Eros - pearl white. It's my best bike and I love it, but I have pretty much completely upgraded it to Chorus/Racing T/Shamals.

Make sure it is the 1998 Eros, the 1997 Eros is significantly different - the '98 is the first year with the upgraded frame (ovalized down tube). You can tell the '98 by:

- It only has lugs around the bottom bracket - the other joints are tig'ed ('99s are all tig'ed)
- It comes in Celeste or White ('97s are some kind of wine color)

Some thoughts:

Good: The Veloce Cranks in 1998 still had the machined rings - today, you have buy at the Centaur/Racing Tee level to get those rings.
Good: The frame is in fine shape after 5 years of 3,000 mile seasons.
Good: The brakes - heavier than the higher end models but still double pivot - just about the only original components left on my bike.
Neutral: The Eros has a relaxed geometry when compared to other bikes - it was designed for light touring rather then racing. It is a lot more comfortable than traditional racing bikes as well. I still find it easy to keep up with friends on much better bikes though (ie., the difference in riders is much greater than the difference in bikes).
Bad: The bike is heavy (23 lbs or so for 59 cm). But a lot of that is the mirage bottom bracket and rear hub/cassette (steel cogs on a steel carrier). Both can be easily upgraded.
Bad: I found the avanti front ergo and the mirage rear ergo clunky, particularly when coupled to the avanti (or was it mirage?) front derailuer.
Bad: The Miche headset cracked (but did not fail) last spring.
Bad - The frame was not properly prepared by Bianchi - the head tube and bottom bracket (tube) were not faced.
Wheels: Solid but heavy -CXP-21/mirage hubs. I stil use mine for spring riding.

$600 sounds like a good deal, particularly when coupled by the support of a good LBS. For a good bike with a strong steel frame you can't go wrong with this one. Remember, you can replace the derrailuers with Racing T/Centaur for not a lot of $$.

I have seen them new cheaper on Ebay but without LBS support...