Monday, March 20, 2017

Bici d'Epoca - HUFFY/Landshark

A tribute to the only USA winner of the Giro d'Italia

Regular blog followers remember this POST  Finally, here are photos of the completed project. Things were held up while we sourced a replacement part for the hubs bought via ebay italia which were, uh, a little rough. They're better now. Not perfect, but for an occasional epoca event, they're just fine.

Everyone knows Hampsten's "Huffy" was really a Landshark and that his bike used components from those "other people", but we just couldn't go that far. 7-Eleven used Campagnolo components in the previous years when the Serotta-built team bikes were branded as MURRAY, so why not?

It's a close-to-replica paint job, thanks to our friends at The Color Factory and Velocals who supplied the headtube decal along with the Tange Prestige tubing decal. After a bike made by Serotta using the team sponsor's tubeset failed, Hampsten then asked John Slawta of Landshark to build him a bike using the tried-and-true tubing from Japan. This bike was made from the same tubing with a similar seat lug, though the straight-bladed fork is certainly not like Andy's bike.

Polished alloy Campagnolo triple cranksets look the part and are perfect for the steep, unpaved climbs of events like EROICA CA, which we'll attend next month. Larry couldn't resist using an old-time crankbolt.

He also couldn't resist painting in the tiny cutouts in the dropout in contrasting green.

We think these Campagnolo hubs might be the most beautiful....ever?

Same for the rear wheel. These vintage hubs were laced up to new rims with 2 mm spokes in a 3 cross pattern for durability. Wheels take a beating on the unpaved portions of the epoca event courses so we also mount up some fattish tires. These are 27 mm.

The handlebars are a bit modern for this project, but they were on the bike during its other lives (and paint jobs) so why not "back date" them a bit with a NOS set of Campagnolo Victory levers with the beautiful (but hard to keep clean) white hoods?

You might wonder what those black things are? You can see one better in the photo below. 4ZA calls them QUICK - simple, inline brake cable releases. The brake calipers on this bike, one of the most beautiful ever made, are the Campagnolo mono-planer design where the arms intersect each other, making for a firm action with excellent stopping power. Until the dual-pivot design came around these were the best, but built (like the dual-pivots) without a Q/R as Campagnolo moved it to the brake lever, same as they do today. 

The combination of the older levers without this feature and the slightly-more-modern brake calipers with no Q/R would have left us with no way to open the brakes to easily get the wheels out. QUICK saves the day - you just push the piece at right angles to the cable housing in and instantly your brake opens up. In this photo you can also see the one dead-giveaway that this is not a HUFFY or Serotta - the LandShark logo cast into the brake bridge. 

Tange Prestige tubing decal

Larry couldn't resist putting this Passo Gavia wine bottle in the cage since that's where Andy sowed the seeds for his victory on the epic day. Note the Suntour retrofriction downtube shift levers and the fact the wine bottle is EMPTY! Hey, the souvenir is the BOTTLE, right?

A view of the bike with no pump or bottle. The ugly, scratched up seatpost will be replaced but otherwise she's ready-to-go for EROICA CA 2017. Hampsten's supposed to be there, perhaps we should get him to autograph her? We plan to sell this (and the SCAPIN) right after the event so let us know if you're interested.

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