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Aero levers or not for 1988 Alan Ďcross build?

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Aero levers or not for 1988 Alan Ďcross build?

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Old 04-28-18, 10:46 AM
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Wes_in_va
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Aero levers or not for 1988 Alan Ďcross build?

Iím a relatively recent vintage bike junkie and Iím new here, so ďhello!Ē

Iím building a 1988 Alan cross frame up and Iím going with a mostly period correct theme. I thought I was going to use modern brake levers but now that Iíve roughed the build together I just canít.
I love the look of the Shimano 600 drillium levers but theyíre non aero and canít decide if thatís okay to me. Just looking for some input as to the aesthetics and to how period correct the non aero look would come across? I believe that in 88 bikes were found with both options? I donít see many cx bikes from that era with non aero levers.
You folks are the experts. Whatcha think??
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Old 04-28-18, 11:02 AM
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Originally Posted by Wes_in_va View Post
I don’t see many cx bikes from that era with non aero levers.
Doing a series of quick clean ride/dis-mount/shoulder/carry/run/obstacle/drop/re-mounts/rides at race pace w/o the possibility of fouling a hand on a cable loop is why aero levers were adopted for 'Cross racing "back when". Find a set of Diacompe 1st generation "Aero" levers for the most popular re-fit by 'Cross racers in the era if being all period-correct-ish.

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Old 04-28-18, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Wes_in_va View Post
Iím building a 1988 Alan cross frame up and Iím going with a mostly period correct theme. I thought I was going to use modern brake levers but now that Iíve roughed the build together I just canít.


In the '80s, competitors often used older components mixed with the most modern ones. Eg. Sean Kelly competed with old style pedals with toe clips in the early '90s.
My ars poetic: if possible a complete set from the frame production time. Older parts, as I wrote above, can still be ideologized. Newer? Hmm ... It is certainly more practical to use than the older ones.
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Old 04-28-18, 01:36 PM
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I decided to pull the trigger on some Dia Compe Aero Gran Compes. With the drilled out levers and gum hoods Iíll get the look I like hut with aero routing.
thanks for the input!
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Old 04-28-18, 03:59 PM
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Be mindful you are into non repairability once the metal fatigue shows up in cracked 'lugs'

Not even sure if you pony up the hefty air freight to Italy and back, if they still repair them..

they too have gone on to welding and oversize tube.
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Old 04-28-18, 05:10 PM
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FWIW, I have both an Alan and a Vitus 979 and don't worry about cracked lugs. If it happens, it happens.

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Old 04-28-18, 05:19 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Be mindful you are into non repairability once the metal fatigue shows up in cracked 'lugs'
The spoil-sport prophet of doom & gloom speaks, for no reason.
Frames of all flavors of materiel and eras fail in service, this is not news.
This Alan seems to be chugging right along w/o catastrophic failure, and likely to do so for a while.

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Old 04-28-18, 06:33 PM
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I like aero levers because they provide about 10 to 15 percent more braking leverage. If you grip is super-strong, this won't matter, and might even be considered a disadvantage.
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Old 04-29-18, 04:13 AM
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Welcome to the forums - pics needed!

Somewhere around here I have a Bicycle Quarterly where Jan Heine revived his old Alan and raced it. I seem to remember non-aero levers and barcons. I’ll try to find it later today.

BTW my 10 year old Alan cross bike is carbon tubes glued to aluminum lugs and rear triangle. Great bike.
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Old 04-29-18, 07:28 PM
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Iíll work on getting my 10 posts in so I can upload a pic. Iím pretty stoked.
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Old 04-29-18, 07:30 PM
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...and thanks for the input and the welcomes.
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Old 04-30-18, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Wes_in_va View Post
Iíll work on getting my 10 posts in so I can upload a pic. Iím pretty stoked.
I want to see ALL the pics. Old cross bikes are so cool.
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Old 04-30-18, 11:09 AM
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Originally Posted by 50voltphantom View Post
I want to see ALL the pics. Old cross bikes are so cool.
Well, then, multiple pic it is!
I realized today that I didn't have the front cable hanger that I thought I had so had to source that, and found out that the rear tubular is shot so I'll need to replace that. (Good thing I have some saved up just in case....)
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Old 05-01-18, 07:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Spaghetti Legs View Post
Somewhere around here I have a Bicycle Quarterly where Jan Heine revived his old Alan and raced it. I seem to remember non-aero levers and barcons. Iíll try to find it later today.
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Old 05-01-18, 07:18 AM
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I'd go aero simply for the lack of cables to get caught in. If there's a way to catch a body part on a cable, I'll find it.

I'd suggest Modolo Aero, as they are super light, have great feel due to the extra pulley's leverage, but you'd have to be careful on placement; they are not a great reach. However, they are no worse than the one pictured above.
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Old 05-01-18, 09:37 AM
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As the all aluminum fork is very flexible, it is a good place for mini V brakes..

Tried to be clever with a drilled stem, Applying the front brakes, It was sending the fork into vibrating like a tuning
fork..

Looked good though..
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Old 05-01-18, 04:06 PM
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@Spaghetti Legs, Neat pick of Jan. Note that should be barcon (not barcons), along with what looks like one of his R.Herse cranks with inner & outer chainguard.
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Old 05-02-18, 07:25 AM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
Tried to be clever with a drilled stem, Applying the front brakes, It was sending the fork into vibrating like a tuning
fork..

Looked good though..
Darn right it does. One of those things I love to see but wouldn't do myself.
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Old 05-06-18, 11:58 AM
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I love that pic of Jan Heine racing the old bike.
I got my bike finished a few days ago and did my first ride today. It was a ton of fun. I can definitely see racing it for giggles.
As soon as I get enough posts Iíll get pictures up.
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Old 05-19-18, 07:47 PM
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Now: pedal choice?

I have a couple of rides on the bike now. What a ton of fun.
Im currently using Clipless pedals but Iím thinking Iíll go to clips and straps soon.
What would be period correct? Not that Iím all that period-perfect anyway, but what the heck, right??
Pics soon: Iím getting close to 10 posts!
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Old 05-20-18, 06:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Wes_in_va View Post
I have a couple of rides on the bike now. What a ton of fun.
Im currently using Clipless pedals but I’m thinking I’ll go to clips and straps soon.
What would be period correct? Not that I’m all that period-perfect anyway, but what the heck, right??
Pics soon: I’m getting close to 10 posts!
In the 70's many
of us raced 'Cross on the inexpensive flat two-sided Atom 440 pedals w/ steel toe clips & leather straps.
The "trick-set-up" came straight from BMX racing in the '80's when Campagnolo jumped into that exploding market with BMX pedals with dual flat serrated quills in cheerful colors.
My pair moved onto the MTB for the early years of NORBA racing and are still in weekly service on the town bike w/ the nylon toeclips and straps that have surviving many a root-strike and coating of mud over the decades.

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Old 05-20-18, 06:23 AM
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Iíve looked at some Campy mtb pedals on the auction site but MAN the prices being asked are silly. Pedals would cost me not much less than the whole rest of the build!
Those Atoms might be pretty trick. Thanks!
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Old 05-20-18, 06:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Wes_in_va View Post
I’ve looked at some Campy mtb pedals on the auction site but MAN the prices being asked are silly. Pedals would cost me not much less than the whole rest of the build!
Those Atoms might be pretty trick. Thanks!
By comparison the 440's were longer than optimal, heavy, fragile, disposable and superseded as soon as good BMX pedals became available for good reason(s).
The Campag BMX pedals were quickly knocked off by Japanese mfgs like MKS at much lower prices for the same function and are still available today.
If you install a modern pair and cover them w/ mud I won't tell the Period Correct Police if you don't....

All of the monkey-motion involved in using 'clips & straps went away as soon as Shimano introduced dedicated MTB/"Cross SPD clipless pedals.
Slow, fumbly and awkward can be eliminated w/ a simple "click" if one wishes to, much like indexed shifting could also.

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Old 05-20-18, 06:24 PM
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Woohoo! I can post pics finally. Here she is in all her glory



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Old 05-20-18, 08:27 PM
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Well done!
Racing it this 'Cross season?

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