Il Gruppo Progetto: Serotta Colorado AL

Il Gruppo Progetto: Serotta Colorado AL

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The Velominatus’ machine is their own manifestation of personal taste and demonstration of adherence to The Rules.  We each, in our own way, meticulously maintain our bicycles and adorn them with the essential, yet minimal, accoutrement.   Yes, we must Obey the Rules pertaining to bar tape, tyre selection, saddle choice, stem height, color matching and so on.  But within those parameters there lies flexibility and choice.

Furthermore, this site is a refuge we turn to for brotherhood, community, and belonging.  However, cyberspace is a vacuum in that we apply and practice our craft apart from one another, spread to all corners of the globe.  With this in mind, I offer an experiment,  Il Gruppo Progetto, inspired by Brett’s Il Progetto: Bosomworth.  The intent, dare I say charge, of Il Gruppo Progetto, is for our community of Velominati to come together in designing my new build project, a Serotta Colorado AL.

I picked up the Serotta frame and fork recently to further my adherence, em, obsession over Rule #12.  Although not a top shelf Serotta (think of it as Maker’s Mark as opposed to The Glenlivet), it is a platform worthy of respect, care, and craftsmanship.  As fall arrived I found my foul weather steed in need of replacement and the Serotta was the perfect combination of material, style, and economics.  My mind was flooded with ideas of how I might build her up.  Then I thought of all of you, your experience, ideas, and of course, passion.

So as fellow Velominati, I humbly ask of your counsel for this build.  The basic platform is as follows:

  • Serotta Colorado AL frame and Kinesis aluminum fork
  • Shimano Ultegra 6600 and 6500 mixed group set (6500 cranks – octolink) 10 sp
  • Shimano SPD SL pedals
  • Bontrager XXX Lite wheelset

As you can see from the list above this worthy steed is in need of much more.  Bars, stem, bar tape, saddle, seat post, possibly a fork, tires, chain, headset, and cables.  Please keep in mind the following:

  • I do have budget constraints.
  • This bike should be capable of riding many miles on gravel as well as tarmac.
  • My plan is for this bike to be utilitarian in nature.  Performance, knock-about, foul weather, durability, weight, aesthetics, tradition, period (mid 90’s to 2004 or so)

So there you have it.  My proposition is for us to come together in a modicum of further connection than what cyberspace allows.  My hope is that the finished build will be a tangible symbol of our collective wisdom and a reminder to me of what we, the Velominati represent,  as I ride this bike.

Thanks in advance for playing.

// Accessories and Gear // Il Progetto // The Rules

  1. @Marko
    Those are bling-tastic! And sealed bearings, a must have for the rain bike.

    I like the boys to play in the same neighborhood.

    heehehee, you are wise. Stick with the same saddle, I’d vote black to keep it simple.

    You never mentioned mud guards(FFS!) If you need ‘em, these are wicked nice. Aluminum too.

  2. Looks like I need to register

  3. @Jaja
    Jaja, the nitto crossed my mind, briefly. They are widely available and compatible with much, but, it screams hipster fixie doosh to me. The cinelli, OTOH, bellows out a classic soprano aria. Thanks for the post though.

    @Gianni
    them are sexy mudguards.

  4. @Marko

    I shall have to avert my eyes from my stem on the way home tonight, now I know it is screaming hipster fixie doosh to all and sundry! Although I live in Kent and we don’t really do hipster fixies down here, so I might get away with it.

    Have you gone for those handlebars?

  5. @Jaja
    Doh, sorry Jaja, no offense. I will say this for Nitto, they seemed to have picked up the quill stem torch left extinguished long ago by the likes of cinelli, 3ttt, and others. There certainly is still a need and I understand they’re nice stems.

    Yes, I ended up with cinelli campione del mundo bars. nice match to the stem methinks. i went narrower as well (42) as I usually ride a 44 but in keeping with the period I thought narrower bars would be a subtle nod.

  6. Agree with Gianni on the saddle – whilst it may go against all things velominati, function beats form when it comes to a saddle. Saw a good bumper sticker on another cycling site the other day – “if no one an see you riding a fixie, is it still cool?”.

  7. @Marcus
    It’s like the old joke about scooters and fat women. They’re both fun to ride until your buddies find out.

  8. @Musket
    You mad fucking genius. The Regal saddle. I am 100% with you on this one, Marko’s boys can learn to play in another playground. Good enough for LeMond and Boonen, good enough for me.

    @Marcus

    Saw a good bumper sticker on another cycling site the other day

    *gasp* There are other cycling sites?

  9. @Marko
    It’s a rain bike. My vote: Go black.

  10. Go black, go Brookes

  11. @Marko

    No offence taken. Beautiful bars. I’m a big fan of polished bars – I will probably be doing a bit of de-anodising and polishing this winter.

    next question: what about down tube shifters?

  12. @Jaja
    I like the Brooks idea, in fact I already have one. I’ll see how it looks. Thing is, it’s fine riding in jeans on a commuter bike but the rivets drive me nuts in my kit. Would look sweet though.

    Negatory on the downtube shifters, i’ve already got the gruppo. But it would be sweet if I was doing that much of a build. Next build, steel, downtube shifters

  13. Wow, so many cool suggestions, and a lot of wacky ones too (mostly from Marko, coincidentally!).

    I don’t know about getting too hung up on ‘period’ componentry for this bike, after all, it’s not a frickin steel Colnago or Merckx, it’s an ALUMINIUM Serotta, and intended as a bit of a beater, no? No Offence meant, but I think putting a Brooks saddle on it would then necessitate ditching those Bontrager wheels.

    Now I’m almost finished my Bosomworth build, reading these comments makes me wonder a little if I should have gone traditional/period on the build. But what I’m going for is a nice riding steel frame with modern components that will be my primary bike, one that I want to ride and enjoy, and can be upgraded to a more modern steel frame in the future. I’m looking at older steel bikes now for a winter/commuter, and it will end up with older stuff on it. Marko, you need to remember the purpose of the bike, keep it simple (you know, Shimano and Bontrager ain’t flash!)

    Got my Ambrosios laced up, just waiting for my ITM bar and a nice post, then we’re done!

  14. @Brett
    +1. Those wheels are ready for Roubaix!

    Being an Aussie in NZ, do you have an opinion on EMC2 bikes. I loaded up on an ebay deal too good to be true and so far I am happy with it – Team issue, Record 10 speed and Fulcrum zeros (which clash I know).

  15. @Brett
    What wacky suggestions?

  16. Marko :

    @Brett
    What wacky suggestions?

    Yellow brake pads, blue tape, white saddles, anodized jockey wheels… should I go on?

    @Marcus

    EMC2’s are pretty good bikes, I see a few around, mainly lower priced ones. The Team looks pretty nice. Eric MacKenzie was a famous racer here, and rode the Tour. I don’t think he builds frames, just desingns them, but I guess he gets his carbon stuff farmed out from China.

  17. @Brett
    I loaded up on an Equipe Team full Record 10 speed and Fulcrum Zeros (a clash with Campy I know) for AUD $2850. The deal was just too good to ignore. The only problem was my lack of experience with ebay which saw the Vendor ring my home number. There he proceeded to deliver the VelomiVeryAngry the great news(so he thought) that I had bought “a $9,000 bike”.

    Needless to say, she hadn’t been told anything about a new bike purchase nor did she hear anything past $9,000.

  18. HELP NEEDED – I don’t know if such a thing as a “broken arrow” exists for the Velominati, but I need the near-psychotic attention to detail that Frank, other keepers and fellow Velominati possess to help me out of a bind.

    Last night, I went as a +1 to my wife’s trendy work thingy, the Frieze Art Fair opening in London. She works in the art world… sorry. There were lots of beards, strangely, and many pairs of stripper heels on some inappropriately aged and dressed hot looking women.. but I digress.

    Bored shitless, I wandered the stalls, until I came across this (Frank, I’ve emailed you the JPEG… pls insert here, ideally with a cool hyperlink on the ‘this’ so people think I’m down with the kids and wired), which is a Gursky (estimated sale value $100,000+, I shit you not)… entitled “Tour de France 2007″. Given the price, I’m somewhat irritated. Bigshot photographer he may be, but he could at least tell us the fucking stage he was photographing (from a fucking helicopter, with a sodding expensive Hasselbladd – spelling may be off, sorry)…

    Anyhow, the wife turns to me, and says “My husband seems to like this cycling lark, HE can tell us exactly which stage of the TdF this was, who was in the lead, etc.” at which point I said I’d get back to them, and am now on this website, saying please help. Please, please help. i cannot face the smirks of this group of intellectual arty mother fuckers who will look at me with confirmation of my idiot nature that I can’t even identify a single stage of a fucking bike race, whilst they can take a pile of bricks and some tarts soiled underwear and sell both for over $1m apiece.

    What is the stage of the 2007 Tour de France is this? Which climb is it? What other trivia should I know? BROKEN ARROW! BROKEN ARROW!

  19. @roadslave
    You don’t need to be right – just don’t be in doubt. Haven’t seen the photo but just tell them it is the Aubisque. The Tour went there in 07. Those arty fvckers won’t know any better.

  20. @roadslave
    No need to go into the psychic red zone here. Your team will deploy its maniacal attention to detail and knowledge of cycling history to delivery you mechanical-free to the line.

  21. @Brett
    Remember your own sins before you start chucking rocks, Mr Roubaix with the disco bunny bar tape and (eugggrh…HTFU) zertz.

  22. @roadslave
    Looks to me like it’s The Galibier, which, given that it’s 2007 was Stage nine, won by Mauricio Soler with Rasjuicin’ in Yellow. It screams Galibier at me, in any case. Anyone think it’s the l’Iserand?

  23. minion :

    @Brett
    Remember your own sins before you start chucking rocks, Mr Roubaix with the disco bunny bar tape and (eugggrh…HTFU) zertz.

    Yeah, yeah… I’ve repented. Roubaix, as you well know, is sold; much like you sold the sweet 853 Condor with Chorus and bought a plastic bike with (eugggrh) Ultegra!

    @frank

    @roadslave

    I’m leaning more towards l’Iseran, with more switchbacks near the top than the Galibier, from what I can glean from a search of images. But I’m probably waaay off… Oli, this is right up your alley!

  24. @frank
    Methinks you might have got it in one. The peak looks about right, and some of the scenes of the mountain in this video seems to corroborate. Maybe L’Iseran, but I’d put my money on le Galibier (that should be a rule, incidentally: that all French, Spanish, and Italian iconic mountains should maintain the pronoun of their language of origin). It’s a pretty interesting picture, but I’m not quite sure what makes it worth six figures; does it come with Soler’s bike and a Barloworld team car? Even then, it seems as though it would be several dozens of thousands of dollars overpriced. But that’s why I’m not in the art world…

  25. Incidentally, and à propos of nothing (and wildly off-topic), is Soler the tallest dotty jumper winner in Tour history? (I know: let me google that for you).

  26. @roadslave
    I thought for some reason this was the Restefond, but it wasn’t in the 2007 race.
    Now that I can focus some deductive skills on the task (and see the photo) a few facts are immediately apparent:
    (1) it’s a high, high climb in the Alps. It’s more desolate, like the Alps, not the Pyrennees.
    (2) It’s a col, by the way the road dissapears over the ridge. Not a climb up a mountain to a ski station, like Alpe d’Huez. This rules out Tignes on Stage 8.
    (3) Switchbacks. Neither the Colombiere nor the Roselend have a bunch of switchbacks right near the top. The Iseran has a couple, but not a lot.
    Frank is right, it’s the Galibier.

  27. @Nate, @Steampunk
    I’m pretty sure it is; all the little trails that cross are a big giveaway that it’s the Galibier as well. In fact, they do a mountain bike race on those.

    Brett, your link doesn’t work, but I think that’s the shifty developer’s shoddy coding’s fault, not yours. I’ll work on that.

    I am anxious for Oli to chime in! In fact I believe that Bugno ran into a spectator in ’93 on one of those turns near the top, riding a bike that very nearly resembles Oli’s TSX.

  28. @roadslave
    Regardless of the mountain, I get a huge climbone staring at that picture. Not a $100k climbone though.

  29. @roadslave
    Is it not the DESCENT of the Galibier on the south side?? Note that the road appears to go over the ridge with a right hander at the top – suggesting that the photographer is most likely above the cafe at the top of the Lautaret? Also, there seem to be more turns than the approach from Valloire has.

    If confirmed, this will give you the pleasure of being able to face the “smirks of this group of intellectual arty mother fuckers” with confirmation of the idiot nature of the artist who couldn’t even identify which way the bikes were going.

  30. Thanks, Chaps. You all rock. V grateful (appropriate or inappropriate use of V?) Shared your views in sanitised form… first time my wife has ever laughed out loud at anything to do with cycling at a) the sheer deductive analysis and attention to detail of you lot (I even got away with an ‘I told you so’) and b) Steampunk’s comment: “Incidentally, and à propos of nothing (and wildly off-topic), is Soler the tallest dotty jumper winner in Tour history? (I know: let me google that for you)”

    … whilst she thinks we are all mad, the good news is that she now knows I’m not alone in my insanity. Who knew – building bridges between her world and mine though an arty photo of the TdF would lead to a detente about TFB*?

    Again, many thanks.

    *That fucking bike

  31. may I suggest Turbo II saddle, black, and given its a great US brand how about some Ritchey bars and stem…wold somehow fit the build with the wheels.

    BTW currently de-anodising, polishing and building up a 84 Centurion.

    Good luck!

  32. @roadslave
    I don’t know if I’m depressed or gratified that wives other than my own think I’m nuts…

  33. @Brett
    Hey man, all input solicited has been well within the rules and I need new jockey wheels. Sure I could go with stock ones but why not go sealed for the rain bike.

    @all
    Final answer:
    fi'zi:k all black antares
    fi'zi:k microtex black tape
    Cinelli 101 stem – silver
    Cinelli campione del mundo bars – silver
    IRD techno glide headset – silver
    wippermann connex chain
    black anodized sealed bearing jockey wheels
    generic carbon fiber seat post I had in my shop
    Just gonna slide some jagwire or shimano cable through the gore housing. It’s really the only way I can support my local little limited shop.
    And, I removed the decals from the bonti rims. Much sharper look and it’ll be our dirty little secret.

    I’ll go with the gp 4-seasons but am having trouble deciding betwixed 25’s and 28’s. The 28’s will smooth out the ride more and be better for gravelling but the 25’s will roll nicer on the tarmac. Hmmm.

    Thanks for all the input. I’ll post pics in a week or two when all arrives and I have time to build it up.

  34. @George
    I was wondering about that myself, but the cars are definitely headed up and going in the wrong direction if that’s the case. I just checked the profile, and they definitely rode from St Michel de Maurienne, so it’s got to be the climb.

    Unless the photog is sufficiently twattish that it’s not the TDF at all but the Dauphine or some shit.

  35. @Collin
    CLIMBONE. I’ll have time this weekend to add some stuff to the Lexi. You better fucking believe that’s going in there. Strong work.

  36. @ all… having checked route on Google Maps and Google Earth… I reckon he’s doctored the photo…. the top half of photo is Galibier from the South Side (the riders are going up it!), but there aren’t enough hairpins… so the bottom half is a different climb (or different part of the climb)…. cheating bastard photographer. If so, which is the bottom half from? (the road does appear to disappear in the photo about half way up)

  37. @frank
    I couldn’t see enough detail in the pop-up, but as a spectator you would drive there in such a way that you’d be pointing uphill. I have had time now to study it properly and I would bet that it’s the descent.
    My bet rests on:
    1. The photographer is obviously a total felchbucket.
    2. While the above has managed to miss out the col itself in his photo, the last bit of road we’re seeing must be leading to the col. The col turns to the left on the climb. This must be the south side.
    3. I have been on google earth and managed to correlate the turns with the photo pretty well from the south, but not the north.
    4. Also I managed to identify the car parking area which is almost the focus of the photo – middle right hand side with a patch of dirt. I certainly don’t remember any car parking or flat enough area on the north side once the hairpins start.
    5. Shadow analysis. Hard to see but what shadows the cars do cast go uphill.
    The only doubt I have is caused by the sponsor’s “archway” over the road where all those cars are parked. I would have thought you’d only get those on the climb.

    Whatever it is, there are plenty of awesome cycling-related photos – and that’s not one.

  38. @Marko
    Mate, nice final spec… you nailed it.

  39. @George
    By god you are right about this being the south side. The mini-switchback just before the summit is a dead giveaway.

    Also, there appears to be a peleton followed by the team car caravan in the lower right corner, just abeam of the gentleman’s elbow. The riders are tightly bunched, not strung out as on a descent. Thus the group are on their way up. In which case it can’t be the 2007 Tour for the reasons others have noted and the photog is, dare we say, a COTHO.

  40. @Nate, @George, @Brett
    Yeah, cheers – well done. The riders are going up for sure (I looked at the higher-res original Roadslave sent me) and as pointed out, the riders are going up, there are team cars there, etc. Also, I am 100% it’s at the top where Bugno wheel bashed a spectator for stepping in his path and after further investigation that is most certainly on the South side.

    The photog is a sniveling carbon dispensary who doesn’t know his ass from his elbow. What fuck knuckle. 100K for a photo that the “artist” doesn’t even fucking know what it is.

    Please give me back a world where a top-end bike costs less than a car, where we had frames built in the country where they were designed, and photographers either sat on the back of a moto or fucked off and left us alone.

  41. @frank
    I might also point out that this is the better side to climb it from; the Telegraph really breaks your rhythm if you come from the other side.

  42. @frank
    Frank,
    “the Telegraph really breaks your rhythm if you come from the other side.”
    Not for me it doesn’t. What breaks my rhythm is the monstrous size of the fucking mountain.

  43. @George
    You have to find the correct rhythm. On a beast such as this, it’s typically, “ow, ow, ow, ow”* at approximately 60-80 beats per minute.

    NOTE: On a V harnessing day, ow == yes. However, if I had written, “yes, yes, yes, yes” above, people would not have been thinking about riding things other than bikes.

  44. another step closer.

  45. Nice. Much as I like Brett’s Bosomworth (I’ve a restored SLX built by Eddy Bosomworth in around ’89) I would prefer it with Record alloy cranks. I built a few different iterations on mine, and settled on chorus carbon 10s, with a Record alloy crank, Ti Chorus post and stainless cages.

    It’s been nigh on impossible sourcing nice 40 or 42cm classic silver bars and a 110mm quill (or 120mm) that’s not exorbitant…

    I’ve got a ’91 Gazelle Champion du Mondial AA Special that’s a similar blue / chrome scheme to the Serotta – I’ll try find a picture.

  46. Brett :

    minion :
    @Brett Remember your own sins before you start chucking rocks, Mr Roubaix with the disco bunny bar tape and (eugggrh…HTFU) zertz.

    Yeah, yeah… I’ve repented. Roubaix, as you well know, is sold; much like you sold the sweet 853 Condor with Chorus and bought a plastic bike with (eugggrh) Ultegra!
    @frank
    @roadslave
    I’m leaning more towards l’Iseran, with more switchbacks near the top than the Galibier, from what I can glean from a search of images. But I’m probably waaay off… Oli, this is right up your alley!

    Yeah I’d buy that bike back in a flash if it was for sale. Lets not trample all over the plastic ultegra bike though, at least till one day before I’ve had it for 2 years and I go from full replacement insurance to depreciated rates…

  47. @Brett
    This could be the post troll of the year but it was Centaur, not chorus. And I weep for that bike on a daily basis. I will be prompted to defend my current plastic Ultegra bike though, if only for the fact that its what you do with it, not what it’s made out of, that really counts.
    F#%*ken wheels on that thing were worth more than I ended up selling it for. To me anyways.

  48. @Marko

    Just saw a ’97 Serotta Colorado frame on e-bay for a reasonable price ( red, with a Kinesis carbon fork) and wondered how you’ve gotten on with this build, now 2 years on.  Did it meet your expectations?

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  50. @Dolfsmomb

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