It’s just over six years since I fastened the first component to this frame and four or five years since I completed the first build on a long road to making this the best example of a restored TI-Raleigh Team Pro 753 that I could make, and now the time has come to take SB4059 apart. Yes, I am taking it apart to make it even better. Each step in building SB4059 has added a bit more accuracy and detail. Then a little while ago I blogged about fitting some NOS black Campagnolo brake cables, which meant that there were only two more items stopping this bike from being perfect, they were the top tube and Reynolds frame transfer, transfers that have really bugged me since day one of the journey.
I should have tackled this job when I first got my hands on the frame but the excitement of starting a project just snowballed and before long I was into the build and couldn’t go back. To be honest, I’m feeling both excited to get this job done and also a tiny bit daunted to tackle it. But I have a plan, and step one in that plan is to carefully remove all the components and safely store them away.
I built SB4059 before I started my regular process of documenting new arrivals to the collection, so the final step in my plan is to do a fully photographed, measured and documented rebuild looking at each part, it’s specification and how it is fitted. It is all the steps in between dealing with the transfers and paint that will be difficult.
A well put together bike will come apart without a problem. The bike is built with a mix of Campagnolo Nuovo and Super Record so it seems fitting to use Campagnolo tools to do the work. It really doesn’t take many tools, a few allen keys and an 8mm socket plus some BB and headset tools. The strong black coffee and biscuits aren’t necessary but do help things go smoothly!
I build bikes in a set pattern starting with fitting the headset and BB and then fitting items such as the chainset, derailleurs, chain, wheels, bars and stem. And there is no prize for guessing that I take them apart in the reverse order of the build process.
Anything likely to cause damage to the frame or paint will come off first. I start with the bars and stem (with brake cables), followed by the chain. Once the wheels are dropped out there isn’t much more to do. Brake calipers and derailleurs come off with a couple of turns of a spanner.
Taking parts off this frame reminds me of the struggle and expense when I was sourcing the perfect components. Only the best would do and there was always so much competition for the best NOS bits and pieces.
Pedals next followed by cranks, and then any small parts such as end adjusters and bottle cages. Getting the correct period parts was so important in the initial build. I was using a 1980/1982 SBDU spec for team bikes so I sourced parts from that narrow period. If it had a date coded part such as the cranks and rear derailleur then it had to be 1980 to match the build year of the frame. New parts were also my preference – I didn’t want used parts. Bars, stem, Benotto tape, brake levers, calipers, all cables, pedals, clips and straps, saddle, SSC rims, spokes, Clement tubs and derailleurs are all NOS with everything else in unmarked condition. The perfect TA bottle cage and TA Contrex water bottle add some rare detail.
A cup of coffee and a couple of biscuits later and I’m left with just the head set and bottom bracket to come off – the first parts to go on are the last bits to come off.
Before moving onto the greasy bits, it is always best to bag up and store the parts and clear the workbench again. Each part goes into an individual bag to reduce the chance of any parts marking each other.
The headset is Super Record and bottom bracket as Nuovo Record, as per TI-Raleigh specification. Just like all the other components on SB4059, these are in perfect condition with no signs of wear.
So here it is, SB4059 back to how it was when I received it.
One thing I never did when I first received SB4059 was document the frame weight with a photograph. Here is the weight… this is an SBDU 57cm Metric tube frame with 27.0mm seat pin (the lighter gauge 753 tube).
The bike is stripped and the parts are safely stored away…
Taking SB4059 apart has been a trip down memory lane, seeing all the components again in detail and remembering the struggle to source the perfect parts has reinforced the fact that I really do need to address the frame transfers to truly finish this project.
Step One of the plan is complete!