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Flight of the Viscount, parts deux e tre(5 posts)

Flight of the Viscount, parts deux e treLone Gunman
Jun 17, 2002 5:29 PM
The second ride of the Viscount was the second shake down and adjusting ride, just about got everything dialed in, no major issues except I have no speedo so I have little idea as to how the bike is performing speed wise. It felt heavy and slow. How is a 24 yo frame supposed to feel? I didn't notice any twisting flex but feels springy on the vertical plane, front to rear over bumps. Not bad, I chose the correct gearing for the area I live in and used them all. Hey, nothing broke or failed but the brakes sure do leave alot to be desired, maybe new pads are in order.

The acid test. Showed up for a club ride with the heavy iron. The fast guys that I try to ride with (all on CF bikes) were checking it out heavy. One guy was drooling over it, I had to laugh. It seems to have mystique or is that mistake now that all the stickers are removed and it is a naked red frame. We were discussing paint options and most said do nothing to it, but it may need paint if I decide it is worthy. Anyhow, lets go ride.

The ride starts off real slow as we got slow people in the group and we stay together out of club courtesy. After about an hour, the fast group takes off on a different route and I want to hang. Coasting down hills I was just as fast as all the high zoot bikes, so I know my wheelset is worthy. The first steep hill we come to a skinny light guy and I spin up to the top quickly and one of the CF guys starts complaining that I got to the top first 'cause I got a chainring mounted to the freewheel and can spin up any hill. Actually it is a 28x40. The rest of the ride was uneventful, we rode at a pace I normally ride at 20+mph and the heavy iron stuck with the CFers. I was surprised and the ride is beginning to feel alot smoother and the front shifting is flawlessly smooth. It may be worthy of custom paint. Then I looked at the site and saw the pearl yellow or blue 3rensho frames and just drooled thinking how my stuff might fit on that frame. Yowza...
Do you think the initial springy feeling is...Djudd
Jun 17, 2002 6:07 PM
your own adjustment to the frame? When I get a new/old frame no matter the size or material there is an adjustment period. I can think of two frames that were initially disappointments. They both grew on me and I still have one of them.
good riding, my friend
Do you think the initial springy feeling is...Lone Gunman
Jun 18, 2002 12:41 PM
I'm not sure, the tires are 11/8" and were @ 110 psi and are recommended for 120 so they were a little soft and the Lemond has a CF fork where this one has cromo. I remember the frame being springy before, it's actually kinda nice, the frame does soak up bumps. Someone else, I believe Dale Brown, posted once about my frame that Viscount may have been using proprietary tubing (whatever they could get there hands on that met specs) as Pinarello used to do, his inferring that my frame may be on par with a 531 type frame. Who nows, only someone who has ridden alot of different frames and is a builder? Plus the wheelset is good and I have read that you can improve a mediocre frame by putting better wheels on.
Kool StopsWalter
Jun 17, 2002 6:08 PM
The salmon nutted pads are sold for the express purpose of upgrading retro brakes. They'll make a noticeable difference but you won't match a modern dual pivot. If not at LBS check Sheldon Brown and Harris cyclery, that's where I get mine. With those and stainless cables you'll upgrade performance far beyond what you'd expect for a pretty small cash outlay.

I have a bit of a soft spot for Viscounts "aerospace" tubing and all. I never owned one but rode alot of miles with a friend who worked his way thru most of their lineup. He took pride in noting that his $450-500 bike was every bit as light as the top of the line Italians or Raleighs that went for an astronomical $1000-1200. Truth was the SunTour or Shimano, particularly the ST shifted better than the N. Record on the top bikes too.
Kool StopsLone Gunman
Jun 18, 2002 12:50 PM
As you may know (or not) the Viscount at this point has S600 hubs, F&R deraillers, brake levers, Tourney CP brakes, Wolber Alpine rims, Tange BB and headset, SR crank and stem, no name fluted seatpost, Selle Italia suede seat, no name bars. All new cables and the brake pads are older shimano stud and nut with a directional arrow on them. I may try the kool stops. I am still getting things dialed and adjusted. Seems the brake cables are stretched after each ride and my rear wheel is getting settled yet, needs touched up after each ride.