Road Bike, Cycling Forums banner
1 - 17 of 17 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Don't worry, the bike is okay. But the fork is in bad shape.

Hey all, hope everyone is doing well. I'm here to ask if you guys think this fork can be salvaged? Both sides bent backwards a good degree and right side has a bit of a kink, and paint looks split on front side. I cannot tell if the steel is cracked or if it is just the paint that is cracked.

What are your thoughts?

Of course, if a replacement is needed I am now on the hunt for an identical replacement, of course. It's a 49cm bicycle, but I am unfamiliar with how to correctly measure the specs on the fork itself. Shall I start yanking it apart to find out? :(

I have started to yank it apart and I am almost there, need to buy a headset tool. Pics for clicks! Thanks for any help!







 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
That fork is forked.

You will need a fork with a 1 inch threaded steerer tube. Maybe it's possible to find one from a larger frame and have your shop thread for the headset. Look for a shop with an old mechanic. This may prove difficult to find a Bianchi one in celeste color. Alternatively you may be able to find a more generic steel fork that is chromed or a CF fork. That would probably be the easier route. Good luck, hope you fared better than that poor fork.
 

·
Doesn't like subtitles
Joined
·
3,808 Posts
Ouch - that is painful to see, especially on such a nice bike. I have the same frame (Giro - same frame but with Athena groupset). That is Columbus SLX. It will be somewhat difficult to replace and possibly pricy. The high end vintage steel forks tend to will sell for north of $100 on eBay.

Here's a guy selling a Bianchi fork on another site I frequent. Very good price and not an exact match but might be a good place holder while you find the right one. Looks like you live in the Bay area so there's a good chance a used frame/fork will pop up on CL. That bike deserves to remain in it's original glory.

FS: 1" FORKS Galore! Serotta, Paramount, Merckx, Bianchi etc - Bike Forums

Look very closely at your top tube and down tube for any ripples or buckles near the head tube. This will commonly happen in a front end collision.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hehe thanks you two. I am happy flattire that you've informed me of the sizing so at least I can get cracking on finding a replacement.

There does not appear to be any bending, buckling, or other frame damage. Luckily for me the fork took the blow completely.

I was thinking that hfc, it will not be easy to find considering age and obscure frame size. Yes, it is SLX. :( Thanks for that link too! My hunt begins!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
There is also the issue of rake and trail to consider, but I have no idea what those numbers would be. Or how important they are, the bike may handle fine with a variation from the stock, or not. As far as finding a fork with a threaded steering tube, if you find one that is slightly too tall, spacers may be added to the top of the headset to the appropriate height and then the lock nut installed. If the height is way too much, likely due to the 49cm size of the frame, you will need to cut and re-thread the new steering tube, not something easily done at home.

If you find a thread less fork, that will work but you will need a new headset and stem, as those forks are not designed to have threads cut into them.


If I were you, I would start by contacting Bianchi, see if they can help or at least give you specs for rake. If I was unable to find a used (or new) one, I would go with a CF fork, and a thread less set up, but I'm sacrilegious that way. You may even be able to find a used CF painted Celeste. Interesting project, good luck!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
As far as finding a fork with a threaded steering tube, if you find one that is slightly too tall, spacers may be added to the top of the headset to the appropriate height and then the lock nut installed. If the height is way too much, likely due to the 49cm size of the frame, you will need to cut and re-thread the new steering tube, not something easily done at home.
Well, count me lucky because I just happen to have a machine shop at work.

Do 1" steering tubes have a standard thread?

Can the steering tube be separated from the fork? If so, I should he able to set the steering tube up in a 4-jaw and cut some new threads! If not, then I have no clue how I would set up the entire fork in the lathe. :O

You have been a wealth of information, really means a alot. Thanks again.
 

·
Doesn't like subtitles
Joined
·
3,808 Posts
The thread is not standard and I can't recall if that one is English or Italian, they are close but not exactly the same, thread pitch is different. When you get your headset wrench, take off the locknut and "Italiana" or "England" should etched on the inside to tell you.

The steerer cannot be removed from the fork. Regarding what length steerer you need, easiest way is to measure the current one. Complex way is to measure the head tube on the bike + stack height of the headset. Add a little for fudge factor. Getting a fork that is too short is bad, getting one that is a little too long isn't a big deal, spacers can be used and as long as there is plenty of thread, you can always cut a little bit off and chase the threads.

Edit: I have a 1989 catalog and the head tube angle is 73 and fork rake is 42 mm.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks hfc.. I thought I had thanked you earlier, but I suppose I forgot. :O

Anyhow.. I got the locknut off, and indeed threading is Italian. I took measurements and am now on the hunt for a replacement fork.

I happen to have a machine shop at my disposal..so I went ahead and set the fork up in a collet block, secured it to the table of one of our mills, and figured I would give it a few whacks with a soft headed mallet. Here's what happened... got them both "straightened" out. I suppose my baby is rideable at this point, but what say you guys.. bad idea?

Even if it rides, I am still hunting for a proper replacement.



 

·
Russian Troll Farmer
Joined
·
3,424 Posts
This would be about the same thing as 'cold setting', just a slightly more extreme version. Of course, you need to get the offset correct and parallel. Since you have a shop, I assume you can use a height stand? You will need to clamp the steerer absolutely parallel to the inspection plate, with the dropouts also parallel. I'd use an axle and a QR without a hub between the dropouts. Once you check the offset, I'd also mount it upright, and check the dropout perpendicularity, too.
 

·
Banned forever.....or not
Joined
·
24,427 Posts
Find an expert steel frame builder to check out the fork.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
248 Posts
Check with a Pro

Find an expert steel frame builder to check out the fork.
+1, our local builder has massive imported Italian Marchetti and Lange alignment tables, with a visual inspection (I would show him the before photo) he may or may not take on the job. If he does he will give you a price and you would have a nice ride again. Should only take a fraction of his normal hourly fee for shop time.
He did a Reynolds 753r fork for me, which the internet will tell you can not be coldset that now has thousands of beautiful miles on it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
It's just a fork. Even if it is made by Bianchi and has beautiful lugs. Not worth it IMHO. I'm not a frame maker but looking at the photos, it's obvious to see the amount of stress that was placed on the fork and the bending is pretty severe. In addition, looking closely at the photos, it sure appears that there is a kink in the metal on the back of the right leg. If I am not seeing things that is more concerning, I would think that will be a likely point of failure. At the least have this assessed by someone who works with these metals regularly.

Years ago I bought a nice Italian lugged frame for cheap. It was second hand new and the fork had alignment issues. It was not easy to get those worked out and the amount of force required for the mechanic to move those blades even a few millimeters kind of freaked me out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,038 Posts
Francis bicycles in Santa Cruz Calif will repair that bike for you on the cheap. He repaired my son-in-law's Bianchi that had a busted chain stay. He charged $100.00 without paint. Santa Cruz may be to far but you can decide that.
 

·
Doesn't like subtitles
Joined
·
3,808 Posts
Man, I would be very tempted to ride that again. It looks like the bend is at the upper part of the leg, rather than at the crown, right? If it had to be straightened at the crown, I would be more worried about stress at the joint and unseen damage. I would probably remove the crown race as well and inspect underneath that.
 

·
a real member's member
Joined
·
3,880 Posts
i'd have no problem taking that fork to my local, reputable frame builder.
 
1 - 17 of 17 Posts
Top