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Making my Ti bike a "trophy bike", deep cleaning, long-term storage, lessons learned

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Making my Ti bike a "trophy bike", deep cleaning, long-term storage, lessons learned

Old 05-29-20, 06:32 AM
  #26  
shelbyfv
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
As far as ti bikes go, it’s only mediocre looking IMHO.
I wish someone would post a pic of a really cool custom ti.
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Old 05-29-20, 07:01 AM
  #27  
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Your bike, so do what you want, but I don't get it at all. It's like the guy that buys a sports car and never drives it, it just sits in the garage.

Ride it, enjoy it, replace things when they wear out. I'm thinking about getting a ti bike, just for the fact that I can ride the hell out of it and worry less about it than I do with the beautiful paint jobs on my carbon bikes.
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Old 05-29-20, 07:39 AM
  #28  
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Wow! I'm quite compulsive about keeping my bikes clean and nice, and have several that are seldom ridden, but I've never considered doing this. But I don't have anything near this fancy, and understand everyone is different. I personally would want to at least be able to see any retired bike I'm keeping.

Your bike certainly is now clean and well protected for the future, whatever it may hold. Well done.
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Old 05-29-20, 07:41 AM
  #29  
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Donate the bike to a bike museum instead. That way the curator could take it off of the wall and ride it at lunch time. Just kidding.

Last edited by Gconan; 05-29-20 at 07:44 AM.
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Old 05-29-20, 07:41 AM
  #30  
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I agree that this project is pretty quirky, but kudos to OP for posting about it in case others want to do this.

That said, I do think that bikes should be ridden, and if you have a "special" bike you may still want to ride it. It does not really do anyone any good being boxed up like that.
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Old 05-29-20, 08:01 AM
  #31  
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2 years ago I stopped by a LBS for a "nature" break on a ride. On the way out there was a Seven Evergreen SL hung so I stopped to admire it. The frame is a work of are with the bare titanium, laser cut butting and perfect welds. A salesman said he'd take it down so I can get a better look. It was fitted with Red eTap and Zipp 303.. same as my Emonda. Then he asked if I wanted to take it for a ride, I said sure but hit had SPD pedals and I has Look cleats. His responses was, no problem we'll just take your pedals off.

I took it around a rather large lot/complex and returned... it is an amazing bike. He salesman ask why i was back so fast, so I took it out for a 10 mile loop.

Amazing bike. Not cheap but on my wish list for the future.
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Old 05-29-20, 08:06 AM
  #32  
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Why. Just why...
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Old 05-29-20, 08:10 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by GlennR View Post
2 years ago I stopped by a LBS for a "nature" break on a ride. On the way out there was a Seven Evergreen SL hung so I stopped to admire it. The frame is a work of are with the bare titanium, laser cut butting and perfect welds. A salesman said he'd take it down so I can get a better look. It was fitted with Red eTap and Zipp 303.. same as my Emonda. Then he asked if I wanted to take it for a ride, I said sure but hit had SPD pedals and I has Look cleats. His responses was, no problem we'll just take your pedals off.

I took it around a rather large lot/complex and returned... it is an amazing bike. He salesman ask why i was back so fast, so I took it out for a 10 mile loop.

Amazing bike. Not cheap but on my wish list for the future.
An Evergreen SL will undoubtedly be my next frame. It may not be soon but when it’s new bike time that’s what I’m getting. Beautiful bikes and they’ll customize it however you like, it also helps that they’re local.
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Old 05-29-20, 08:31 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by Rides4Beer View Post
Your bike, so do what you want, but I don't get it at all. It's like the guy that buys a sports car and never drives it, it just sits in the garage.

Ride it, enjoy it, replace things when they wear out. I'm thinking about getting a ti bike, just for the fact that I can ride the hell out of it and worry less about it than I do with the beautiful paint jobs on my carbon bikes.
I would understand not riding the bike often, if it was something unique or collectible, but this is just a basic Ti bike. It's a nice bike, but nothing really special.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:03 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by ChinookTx View Post
Why. Just why...
It was explained in the opening post.

Originally Posted by datlas View Post
I agree that this project is pretty quirky, but kudos to OP for posting about it in case others want to do this.

That said, I do think that bikes should be ridden, and if you have a "special" bike you may still want to ride it. It does not really do anyone any good being boxed up like that.
It does the bike good, as it will not be worn or damaged (or even get dusty!) in any way. Knowing this apparently does the OP good. Not everyone is the same.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:10 AM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by AlmostTrick View Post
It does the bike good, as it will not be worn or damaged (or even get dusty!) in any way. Knowing this apparently does the OP good. Not everyone is the same.
There is some irony in that statement given the OP stated he did zero maintenance (beyond chain lubing) or cleaning over the 8 years/5K miles he used the bike. Any wear or damage has already happened, and dust would be the least of one's worries at this point...
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Old 05-29-20, 09:11 AM
  #37  
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Hours and hours to clean and take a part a "cherished" bike (which apparently has never been done before) so it can then be hidden away in a box?

I am so confused by this thread.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:21 AM
  #38  
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Reminds me of this lady I used to work with. She kept all of her kids baby teeth in a plastic bag in her fridge........long after her kids moved out of the house. Icky.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:43 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by fuji_owner View Post
All this work was just so enjoyable and satisfying, that I'm seriously considering becoming a bike mechanic.
What you should do, to indulge your new-found appreciation for bike building, is strip the bike down to the frame (you already dismantled the cockpit, so you've made a start), mothball the complete "fair weather" component set and re-equip the frame with a whole new set - beefier wheels, lower gearing, suspension seat post if you like that sort of thing - maybe not quite as fancy as your current kit, 'cos it's going to get worn - and ride it. It's custom - you love it etc, but it's bare Ti, nothing's going to happen to it. If/whenever your cycling conditions improve, buff out any scratches, apply a new decal set and put all the good stuff back on - presto! your trophy bike again! I did something similar to my 20-year-old, >50,000-mile not-babied Ti frame - cleaned it up, added new decals, and it looks like it just left the showroom. In this instance, you really can have your cake and eat it.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:53 AM
  #40  
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Just wondering what the outcome of all this effort is. Bike in box is stuffed in the corner of the garage or basement and forgotten by all. At some point the owner passes away or moves into senior housing. Children find bike and sell it for peanuts at garage sale or maybe because it's taken apart in a box, assume it has no value and leave it curbside or drop off at Goodwill.

Oh and they are annoyed at parents that left them with so much junk to deal with. So much for the memories.
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Old 05-29-20, 09:54 AM
  #41  
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My neighbor just retired. I'm glad he wasn't taken apart and shoved in a box.
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Old 05-29-20, 10:05 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by growlerdinky View Post
My neighbor just retired. I'm glad he wasn't taken apart and shoved in a box.
Maybe he sold a kidney to fund his retirement
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Old 05-29-20, 10:24 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by rubiksoval View Post
Hours and hours to clean and take a part a "cherished" bike (which apparently has never been done before) so it can then be hidden away in a box?

I am so confused by this thread.
+1. I'm not buying it.
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Old 05-29-20, 10:30 AM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
+1. I'm not buying it.
Good job, 'cos he's not selling it
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Old 05-29-20, 10:46 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by mprince View Post
There is some irony in that statement given the OP stated he did zero maintenance (beyond chain lubing) or cleaning over the 8 years/5K miles he used the bike. Any wear or damage has already happened, and dust would be the least of one's worries at this point...
Maybe, but the bike looks pretty mint to me. So do my bikes after 5K miles, and if only ridden in nice weather they don't need any maintenance beyond chain wipe down/lube either.

Originally Posted by indyfabz View Post
+1. I'm not buying it.
So you think the pics of the elaborate packing are all set up and staged for a troll thread? Seems unlikely to me.
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Old 05-29-20, 10:48 AM
  #46  
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Originally Posted by fuji_owner View Post
but I'm sure at least a few folks here have a bike that they would consider their trophy bike, and it's their most prized possession, and they take really good care of it, keep it really clean and don't ride it too much for fear of "ruining" it.
Maybe a very few, but I imagine most people understand that just about every part of a bike, bar the frame, is a "wear item" - just depends on the wear rate, and that everything is up for replacement without diminishing the "wholeness" of the bike. Realistically, most "replacements" become "upgrades", so however perfect the bike seems now, there's always room for improvement, which is part of the fun. It seems like the OP wants to mummify his beloved bike, to freeze it in time, but all he's doing (IMO) is converting what seems like a great bike into a relic.
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Old 05-29-20, 11:14 AM
  #47  
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Originally Posted by AlmostTrick View Post
So you think the pics of the elaborate packing are all set up and staged for a troll thread? Seems unlikely to me.
Taking a trip and/or shipping the bike and having some BF fun while he's at it.

Tell me....Is my bike protected and boxed up because I am putting it away in storage forever or because I flew to Italy with it?

BTW...Any idea what that BuxumBox retails for these days? Pretty pricey "tomb."



Last edited by indyfabz; 05-29-20 at 11:21 AM.
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Old 05-29-20, 11:18 AM
  #48  
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Originally Posted by big john View Post
It's his favorite bike and he's never going to ride it again.
I will if I move back to the road conditions that are good for this bike.
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Old 05-29-20, 11:27 AM
  #49  
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Originally Posted by fuji_owner View Post
After more than 8 years of absolute fun riding my custom titanium Seven Axiom SL, I've decided to retire it and make it a "trophy bike". I will cherish it, keep it and never sell it, but I won't be riding it anymore. This may sound really stupid or wasteful, but I'm sure at least a few folks here have a bike that they would consider their trophy bike, and it's their most prized possession, and they take really good care of it, keep it really clean and don't ride it too much for fear of "ruining" it.

My Seven Ti bike is the best thing I've ever ridden. It has a nice race type geometry with a stiff drivetrain and all the great characteristics you would expect of a titanium frame. Super light, super fast with the springy live feel, great vibration damping, responsive. I've ridden at least 5000 miles on it, not including all the uncounted miles from "casual" rides that I couldn't resist just because it is such a fun and responsive and smooth bike to ride. You can probably see the miles this bike has seen from the condition of the bar tape LOL.



The build is Campagnolo Chorus 53/39 11-speed 12-29 groupset and Zonda 2-way fit wheels, Chris King headset, Enve carbon fork, Ritchey Carbon WCS stem, handlebars and seat post, Speedplay Light pedals, Selle Italia saddle, Vittoria Rubino Pro tires, Lizard Skins bar tape. I was very satisfied with this build.

Now the reasons why I want to retire this bike:
  1. When I got this bike, I used to live in a place that had lots of smooth nice roads with dedicated bike lanes. So the full size 53/39 crankset got used to the fullest getting up to high speeds on the flats. I used to regularly do 65+ mile loops in the metro area without any trouble. Plus, there was a very popular big mountain in the center of the city and I had become fit enough to ride up the mountain on the 39 chainring. It was only later that I found out that most of my riding buddies had a compact 50/34 crankset that made it so much easier for them to do the climbs. I've recently moved to a city that is utter crap when it comes to cycling infrastructure. The roads themselves are really bad, full of potholes, and there are barely any bike lanes. I can barely do a few miles without having to reroute, forget about doing long loops. So I can't really use the 53/39 crankset to its fullest. And I'm scared of really ruining the bike components riding in these conditions. And that would break my heart.
  2. I now live in a city that is very hilly so I think a compact (50/34) or subcompact (48/30 or lower) crankset would be more practical. Also there are more gravel paths than paved roads for cycling. So a traditional road bike with skinny tires may be less suited.
  3. I have not bought a new bike in 8 years, and after such a long time, my eye keeps wandering around looking at all these sparkling new bikes, with disc brakes, not just carbon but also stainless steel and other titanium, and the new intriguing gravel bike category.
  4. I figured if I got a bike that is cheaper than my custom Ti bike (~$8000), I would care less if something got scratched up or damaged. I would have less emotional attachment to it.
At the same time, I don't want to abandon my beloved Ti bike after enjoying it for so many years. I'd done races and charity rides on it, there are many memories. Also, I could never afford to spend so much money on a bike again in my lifetime. So I thought I should preserve the bike, sort of like a museum. This wasn't strange to me, after all I had spent hours just admiringly staring at the bike.

So after convincing myself that I should retire the bike, I began thinking about giving it a proper cleaning, something that I'd never done when I was busy riding it. I had come to know the bike so well only where the riding mattered. I'd never sat down and looked at the different parts. I mean, I had done the routine chain cleaning and lubing. But nothing beyond that.

So now, I had a chance to give the bike a deep clean. I didn't want to spend too much getting special products that were advertised to do just one thing. So I used a lot of WD-40 for degreasing the chain, derailleurs, and cogs. This was the first time that I had removed the chain (for which I had to get a chain tool). Then I soaked the chain in WD-40 and used a toothbrush to scrub off all the accumulated gunk from 8 years. It is surprisingly tough to get the chain fully clean. Then I soaked the chain in a dilute solution of dish soap to get the WD-40 grease off.

The next tough parts were the chainrings. I didn't want to take apart the whole crank assembly, which meant that the chainrings were hard to get to in all their nooks and crannies. I probably spent the most time on cleaning the valleys and the teeth on the chainrings, and as with the chain, the gunk stuck on the metal is really hard to clean. I soaked paper towels in WD-40 and literally detailed each millimetre, sometimes scraping the gunk with my fingernails, that was the only way that I could see the shiny metal under the dirt. Then I used Lysol wet wipes to clean off the WD-40.

The Lysol wet wipes were the most useful thing in this whole cleaning process. I used them to wipe down the frame, fork, handlebars, etc. Being titanium, the frame itself does not really get dirty, and all it needs is a wipe down.

Then I did another thing for the first time. I got a special Campagnolo cassette lockring tool to get all the cogs out from the rear wheel freehub. All this took a lot of hours of reading and watching YouTube videos. Most videos tell you that you need a chain whip to hold the cassette from turning so that you can loosen the lockring. But I didn't want to spend on another tool that I would probably use just once. The lockring tool is the bare minimum needed though, because of the special splines. So I used the chain from the bike itself. I wrapped the chain around a cog, and using thick kitchen gloves I held the chain tight around the cassette while using the lockring tool to loosen the lockring. I was surprised and delighted that it worked!

I removed all the cogs and the spacers and soaked them in WD-40, giving them a nice scrub with a toothbrush. Then I soaked them in dish soap and then washed them off under the faucet. So easy! And now the cogs were nice and shiny and clean. I also wiped the freehub body with wet wipes. Then I put a thin layer of dry chain lube on the freehub body and the thread on the lockring, just to make the connection a little smooth. Then I assembled all the cogs back on the wheel. I had to buy a torque wrench so that I could tighten the lockring to 40Nm.

All this work was just so enjoyable and satisfying, that I'm seriously considering becoming a bike mechanic. I got such a good understanding of how the derailleurs work. I thought whoever came up with the idea was a genius.

Now that the bike was all clean and sparkly, I had to decide how to store it long-term. I couldn't just let it sit out in the open. It had to be properly packaged and stored in a safe and secure manner.

I spent a lot of time looking at different bike travel bags/boxes. The vast majority of the bags/boxes I didn't like because of the way they handled the front and rear dropouts. Some bags/boxes (BikeBoxAlan, BonzaBox, Evoc, etc) didn't have a way to protect the dropouts because the frame was just lying there in the middle of the box with straps. Some bags (Thule, PakGo, etc) only secured the fork in a sort of stand, while strapping down the bottom bracket and letting the rear dropouts hang loosely. Only the Evoc Pro and Scicon TSA 3.0 bags had a stand that securely held the fork and rear dropouts with skewers just as they were designed to be used with wheels. I felt this was the safest way to secure the frame. However, both of them were a soft bags with minimal protection. For the high price, you would think you could get a hard case. Then I found out about the Buxumbox, which is made of aluminum and secures the front and rear dropouts. I felt this was the perfect bike box. And it was only a couple hundred dollars more than the Evoc. So for a marginal cost, I was getting a solid, almost indestructible box made of aluminum. So I bought the Buxumbox Tourmalet.

Now came the huge headache of packing the bike in the box. Of course, after removing the wheels, securing the frame was easy -- just fix it on the stand and fasten the skewers. The rest of the packing took days.


I bought some pipe insulation from Home Depot and cut it to the right sizes to wrap on the down tube, top tube, seat tube, chainstays, seatstays and fork.



I was searching for something to protect the cassette and hub ends. There were some products that came as part of a kit included with the Scicon bag, but nothing for sale on its own. I asked around in my LBS's for those throwaway hub protection caps that came in packaging of new wheels, but no luck.

Finally I had the idea of using thick foam cushions. I bought 2" and 3" thick foam cushions from Walmart. They worked perfectly. I just made a cut out in the middle to fit the cushion onto the cassette. The cog teeth gripped the cushion, and the cushion completely covered the whole cassette. This way, no part of the cassette or wheel hub was exposed to another hard surface, because the cushion got there first. I also used cut foam pieces to protect the rear derailleur.



Another challenge was to somehow cover up the sharp edges of the bigger chainring. I had read somewhere that someone used a pressure cooker rubber gasket over the chainring. But I wasn't going to spend money to get a gasket just for this. So I came up with my own idea. I doubled up strips of black electrical tape to get a thick layer, and then using more smaller strips of the tape across the long strip, I taped the strip around the chain ring. This worked beautifully.



Another challenge was the positioning of the handlebars along the fork. The cables on my bike were too short and tight, so I didn't have enough slack to be able to turn the handlebar easily. In the end, I decided to remove the hoods from the handlebar. I thought I wouldn't be using the bike anyway, so a bit more disassembly would not hurt. This was another great piece of learning. The Campagnolo hoods have a recessed and weirdly angled star head bolt that tightens the hood on the bar. It was a huge PITA to pull back the rubber hood cover and loosen that bolt. In the end, I got the hoods off of the handlebar, so now I had more cable slack to use to pack up the hoods and tie them to the frame. Now the handlebar was free to be padded and placed wherever.

Another nice little trick is to use a piece of folded cardboard as a spacer when you need to remove the stem. This makes sure that the fork it firmly secured in the head tube and does not move up and down. I eventually found out I could put the stem back in place, so I didn't need the cardboard piece.


The only thing that I can call a pain point is the Ritchey stem which was C260 which means it encloses the handlebar all the way around to 260 degrees. This makes it impossible to remove the handlebar from the front of the stem. You need to slide the stem all the way to the bar ends to get it off.

All in all, the Buxumbox is a great option. It has tons of storage room. I still have a lot of room left over after putting my shoes, tools, chain and clothes.



sell lt
it needs to be ridden
this feels wrong.
share with some lucky person what is a very nice rare bike.
like being Pam Anderson hot BACK IN THE DAY but a virgin.
sad.....😔
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Old 05-29-20, 11:28 AM
  #50  
fuji_owner
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Originally Posted by DrIsotope View Post
While I understand that everybody has their own reasons and methods for doing things, this thread is nonetheless mind-boggling. Favorite bike ever but just 5k miles on it? I rode my first bike until I broke the frame. The bike that replaced it will pass 20,000 miles long before its 4th birthday.

If I had a custom frame, that thing would never lose sight of the road-- it would be a slim shade away from the Ship of Theseus, because at some point only the original frame would remain.

I mean, at least hang the thing on a wall. Or put it in an acrylic case, like collectors do with Hot Wheels. Just like... a giant acrylic case. I think "entombed in a shipping crate" seems more like a punishment than anything else.
Like I said in the OP, 5k tracked miles, but many more untracked miles, just because I loved riding it even without the proper kit. But life gets in the way and everyone is different in how much time they get to ride.

I put it in a nice box so it's safely packed in case I need to move again. In this economy, one never knows where the next job might be.
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