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What to do with my Bianchi Campione D'Italia...(6 posts)

What to do with my Bianchi Campione D'Italia...mr tornado head
Jan 21, 2002 8:37 PM
I like the bike a lot, and plan to keep using it as my commuter/runaround/light touring bike. Slight problem with tire clearance (not near as bad as if it were newer)-I can either ride 32-35's w/o fenders, or use fenders and drop to a 700x25 (maybe 28). Other problem is I'd like a wider range of gears on it for touring and the hills a bit further south. Currently it's 13-24 in back and 52 x 42 in front.

I want to go to a triple, but we're talking new crank, new rear and possibly new front der. Also, all the parts are Ofmega Super Record knock off's. Not as desirable as real Campy stuff, but... I hate to break up the family.

So, is it "too valuable" to modify? Worth the modification?
It's a late '80's model, so it not the most desireable piece but it's in pretty decent condition. Thanks for your input.
Questions, questions, questions. Answers, answers, answers.MB1
Jan 22, 2002 5:05 AM
Tires and fenders-try some 700X 26 Forte Kevlars from Performance or Continental Top Touring 2000 in the 700X 25. Unless you are really riding a lot in the dirt they ought to be big enough-even for loaded touring.

Forget the triple, way to expensive to make all those changes. Just get a new long cage rear derailleur and something like a 12-32 cluster. A double with a wide gear range is fine for a bike that you are not going to race on.

The bike is most valuable to you. Used bikes aren't worth near as much as people think-only a very few are collector items, yours ain't. On the other hand since it IS your bike it has a lot of value to you in memories alone plus it fits. Fix it up in a manner useful to you and keep riding that treasure.
Questions, answers and the restaurant at the end of the universemr tornado head
Jan 22, 2002 6:19 AM
Thanks for the intelligent answers!

I do have a RSX crank w/110 bcd that I will probably use, with 50 or 52 and a 36 inner. A 12-32 cluster wtih a 52/36 (110 bcd Sugino Crank) is what I use on the 2300 and works well. Definetely a new rear der, as the current one barely clears the 24 cog.

The Performance tires - use them currently and really like them. And Rivendell is the "voice of reason" - one reason I have fenders and am thinking about getting a rack for it. Maybe Rive rolly-polys...
slim optionsnaff geezer
Jan 22, 2002 5:23 AM
if its a correct campy copy ofmega crank then i doubt you could find a 39 tooth chainring which will fit the old 144 bcd chainring pattern.

performance still have some 7 speed freewheels by sachs that would work in 13-26 tooth sizes. i would also get a sachs pc-58 chain to match at the same time but it isnt absolutely necessary.
http://www.performancebike.com/shop/Profile.html?SKU=373

another option, but more involved is an 8 speed freewheel from nashbar (12-28). http://www.nashbar.com/profile.cfm?category=&subcategory=&brand=1208&sku=3087&storetype=&estoreid=

you would have to check if your derailleur could handle such a big 28 tooth. you will probably have to replace the chain (again pc-58), fit a derailleur like a shimano 105 or shimano lx or xt, and probably also have to find a new inner (42 tooth) chainring that will fit closer to the large chainring (or figure out if you can space the 2 chainrings closer together). maybe not. you may also need to replace your axle for a wider one an possibly stretch your rear spacing from 126mm to 130mm. all of these options a good lbs will be able to clarify for you.

a good source for info and methods is http://www.sheldonbrown.com/articles.html

and also
http://www.rivendellbicycles.com/

above all keep it and in original good condition as years down the road you will appreciate it even more.

them old bikes are not dead they just need more application in making them a little more appropriate for your needs.
Commuter bikeguido
Jan 22, 2002 12:05 PM
My commuter bike is a Columbus SLX lugged frame made in 1985, very much like your Bianchi. It has ESGE fenders with 28C tires. I've ridden it loaded with groceries on a rear rack, but took off the rack and now commute 5 miles with a backpack. Lightly loaded, I can make it up the short little hills around here with a 52/42--13-26 combo just fine, and the 28C tires are adequate. If I were going longer distances with heavier loads, I'd use 32C, the largest size that clear the fenders. 25C is a little too flat prone for me. I hardly ever get flats with 28C.

The nice thing about keeping the bike light is, on days when you don't want to get your nice bike wet and dirty, you can ride your fendered bike and still hang in with the other roadies out there. It's a very versatile bike. It'll perform almost as well as a racer, but the fenders will keep you, your headset, and the riders behind you dry, and the 28C tires will roll over road debris that would puncture skinnier tires.

The only problem I've had is finding freewheels. Bike frames last 20 years, but the parts supply dries up! What we need is a company like Kool Stop (they make after-market brake pads) to start making freewheels that fit the 126 mm drop-out spacing of bikes made between the late 70s and early 90s. Alot of them are still around, and ride just as nice as they did when they were "state of the art."
Re: Commuter bikemr tornado head
Jan 23, 2002 5:20 AM
Hmm... Looks like the Rive roly-poly's or Ruffy-tuffy's may be the tire of choice here. Currently it's riding on 25c Conti Sport 1000's since my brand new 35c Paselas won't fit with the fenders. (Less than 80 miles on 'em... trade?)

I wholeheartedly agree about the freewheels! My Besides the Bianchi, I have a early '80's Trek 400 frame (that was going to be the commuter bike) that when I get more parts will need a wheel/freewheel to fit the 126mm spacing. I'm sure there are lots more out there.