Rossin Build

Dario Pegoretti recounts his first bike: “I sold it in maybe 1977 and now it has come back to me. I had to buy it back, it was part of my life.” Which pretty much sums up whats going on here.

This bike previously owned by me nearly 30 or so years ago, is now getting a new lease of life. The Rossin Record frame of early/mid 80’s vintage was originally supplied in blue or red finish. The blue was fitted with a Record groupset, the red with Super Record.

The objective was to build a bike to be ridden a lot which meant the old drivetrain had to go.  It seems at some point I had replaced the Campagnolo rear mech and friction shifters with an SIS Shimano setup, it probably seemed like a good idea at the time. The finished article will blend old and new, maintaining the original aesthetic but with the benefits of a modern drivetrain and wheels. And for this reason, some parts have been retained along with the existing patina, rather than completely restoring the finish.

A polished alloy Campagnolo Potenza groupset acknowledges the heritage of the bike, 32 spoke record hubs with TB14 polished box section rims contribute to the retro look. I’ve sourced a new Selle Italia Turbo seat and a very nice vintage Campagnolo seat post. White bar tape and cables on the period correct handlebars, and this bike should look much as it did back in the day, but with all the benefits of modern technology. Handling of these bikes was legendary, should be better on the wider rims and modern rubber.

Update

The frame restoration and updates were successful, the Rossin reborn as a comfortable, confident and great looking ride, and ready for the next few decades of service. The engine is unlikely to extract the last drop of performance from it these days, but it is a lovely thing for a long ride in the hills once again.

The craftsmen entrusted with the restoration have both done exceptional work and been fantastic to work with. If you are in the area and have something in mind for your ride, definitely have a chat.

1000km later

Everything has settled in nicely and this bike is the number one choice for anything other than a very long day out in the country. The Vittorio tires look fantastic, ride and handle well, but proved too fragile for back roads. Instead the bike is now wearing Vredestein Fortezzo Sensos, a rugged tire that also rides and handles nicely, and feels confident on backroads – another step closer to the build objectives. The wheels have proven to be awesome, on a downhill the bike rolls past everything and keeps on rolling. Super happy with how its worked out.   

2000km later

Of Campagnolo drivetrains it is said they wear in rather than wear out and this is proving to be the case. Changes have always been smooth but the effort at the levers is becoming less. It’s not Shimano levels of effort yet, however I can imagine that with more kilometres, it will continue to improve. The tires continue to impress and still seem to be fast, grippy and puncture resistant. I have them on the Defy as well now.

The Rossin is definitely the pick of the fleet for anything other than a very long day out in the hills, however as I get fitter I can see that might change as well. It’s heavy by modern standards which means more effort is required to propel it up a hill, but the ride down the other side is very much worth the effort.

Resources

 

Relive ‘Morning Jun 23rd’

This bike is proving to be a comfortable hill cruiser. Hardly surprising really.