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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 6:36 am 
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There are probably more threads on here dedicated to Colnago love than any other brand, so it had me thinking. Do any owners ever feel their Colango has not measured up to expectations?

Of course the bias due to amount paid for them is considerable - so not looking for justifications or another complete Colnago love in. More so hoping for some honest assessments of what owners have thought.

I appreciate what a bike is like for me is different to another person as well, so we'll just have to keep that variable off to the side. But surely there are some common traits with them (aside from their extra weight).

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Posted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 6:36 am 


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 8:36 am 
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Last fall I had bought a C59 just for get something different than the usual Tarmac/Supersix/etc that everybody is using in my local area.
I did love the look but ended up selling it due to flexy BB feedback I was having.

NB: Im not claiming to say my words are the law or suggesting other people not to buy Colnago (I have my own small Colnago collection actually).

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 8:54 am 
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I have never owned a colnago, but I did work in a shop that sold them and got to ride them rather often. there was a CLX dailed exactly to me that I loved. Colnago's always rode abit different from the other bikes, handlling wise. nice balance of predictablility with slippiness.

but do I regret not buying one? nah. not for the money.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 9:17 am 
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I found a C59 for half price in the sale so cost has nothing to do with it in my case.

Bought it for the paint job expecting it to be nothing special ride wise compared to my other bikes.

I was wrong.

The quality of the ride (and my speed when riding it) genuinely surprised me and it's the only racing carbon frame I would ride around the crumbling roads of SE England.

Sorry I can't be more negative.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 11:41 am 
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Wasn't looking for negativity as much as honesty.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 12:17 pm 
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There are mainly two categories of people riding a Colnago.
1. Those who just want to buy a Colnago and not just any bike. These appreciate the made in Italy, the design, the paintjobs, the heritage, the aura, Ernesto Colnago etc. etc. These guys more or less know what to expect and are in love with their precious (I am one of them).
2. Those who just have a lot of money doctors, businessmen etc.) and replace their hi-end frame every year or so. These have tried many frames but still have Colnago among their favorites.
In conclusion Colnago frames (a top Colnago not just every Colnago) can score high in most categories at the same time. Performance, construction quality, ride quality, heritage, looks.
Not many frames can achieve that.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 5:02 pm 
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I'm one of those guys who loves Colnago. I bought my first in 1995. After some problems with other early carbon bikes, I saw a pic of Ballerini winning Roubaix on an early C40 and bought one. I've owned most of the Italian carbon frames since then as well as steel, ti and al. My regret about Colnago is more the ones I've sold than the ones I bought or own. I sold the first C40 in 2005 and have tried to buy it back twice with no luck.

Since buying that first Colnago, I've also owned Pinarellos (late 90s steel and 2010 Dogma Di2), Parlee (Z1 and Z4), Wilier, De Rosa, Pegoretti, Cervelo, Litespeed, various Cramerottis and I've put quite a few miles on bikes of my son, mainly his Look 585 and on a couple of bikes I rented in Italy or France.

My current Colnago inventory consists of 5 C40s, an Extreme C and Extreme Power. After trying all sorts of other carbon frames (a couple of years ago I was assuming a collection of all of them since the C40 but have given that up now), I decided the C40 was my favourite. I like the ride quality and don't have enough power left at age 64 to have a problem with the C40 being too soft. So, I bought four NOS frames a couple of years ago and have two that aren't being ridden (although they're built) so that I have a lifetime supply of my favourite bike.

What do I like about Colnago?

- Fit. The traditional 59 fits me perfectly with not a lot of spacers and a 12 cm stem that's appropriate for my height and frame size. It's too bad that even Colnago is trending towards half a dozen frame sizes.

- Paint. That original C40 was really something with colours all over the place. I eventually sold it because I was tired of the paint but like the fact that Colnagos come with so many different looks.

- Handling. I had a big crash in 2010 with the Pinarello. It wasn't the bike's fault. The stupid rider hit something, front wheel came to a rapid halt and I was pitched over to land on my head with a severe concussion and broken vertebra that kept me off the road for 10 months. When I started riding again, I found I was most comfortable on my trusty old C40. During my time off the bike, I had started reducing inventory because I didn't know if I'd ride again and sold the Parlees, the Pinarello and Cervelo. Parts from the Parlees went onto Colnagos. I know that it's largely mental but I'm comfortable going down some local secondary roads with mediocre pavement at 75-80 km/hr on the Colnagos. I just didn't have the same feeling on some of the other bikes. I took my Extreme Power to the Alps last year and loved it. I had a custom Moots built with S&S couplings last year for travel and had them mimic Colnago geometry as much as they could within their own sizing limitations. It handles like a Colnago, not like the Moots I had about 10 years ago and loved for its workmanship, ride quality and weight but not its handling.

I guess I'm a bit of both categories kgt describes. Do I think Colnago is the only brand? No. Do I think it's the best? Again no, but I think it's one of a few brands that can claim to that description. There are a lot of great bikes out there today and if a Colnago strikes your fancy, buy it. If you hate it and love your (insert favourite brand here whether Euro, American or Asian), stick with your favourite.

Also, even though all my Colnagos (and all my bikes since 1995 except the Dogma) are Campy equipped, put whatever group on it you prefer. The every Colnago should have Campy crowd tires me out. The good teams that used Colnagos for years all used Shimano. They're all so much better than the bikes we had in the 70s, 80s, 90s and even 00s that you should use what you like rather than what some blog says you should.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 5:09 pm 
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I have a c40 and c50. Quite the contrary to your question. Both have exceeded expectations. They are great timeless bikes.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 6:18 pm 
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Best bike I've ever owned. The sole negative for me is that in my size a purchase meant a sloping frame which to me detracts from the look. Something that borders on negative is the apparent inability to mount a 25 cm Michelin tire, however the 23 cm I'm on works just fine for me. The positives are many, the bike climbs handles. First bike I've owned that makes me feel that I not the bike is the limiting factor in a ride.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 8:15 pm 
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I've owned a C50 briefly circa 2010. OK, I bought the frameset alone from a team, it had about 2-3 thousand kms on it, which didn't seem like a lot for a bike this class, plus - the guy who rode it weighted ~65kgs. my expectations were sky-high, but I ended up selling it after few weeks and 'returned' to the 585 I had. why? I really couldn't find anything more attractive in Colnago compared to LOOKs. I'm a LOOK fan, I love the way they combine the two worlds of comfort and performance, and untill their recent 'integration' thingy I was certain I'd ride LOOKs like forever

but back to C50 - for me Colnago's just another brand. I don't fall for products, I don't care about the logo or the 'bling'. Colnago's a top notch product for sure, but still just a product. I also hate overpriced items, and the C50 felt like one. It rode really well, I couldn't find anything not to like, but it didn't make me wanna dump my LOOKs - which were like half the price back then. or - to put it another way - I could get a full DA 585 bike for the price of a new C50 frameset.. just didn't make much sense.. :noidea:

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 9:12 pm 
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[quote="tymon_tm"... to put it another way - I could get a full DA 585 bike for the price of a new C50 frameset.. just didn't make much sense.. :noidea:[/quote]

Sometimes the nicer things in life don't have to make sense.
I echo many of the positive comments here, especially C50jim, and could write a tome on the subject. But I won't.

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Last edited by Calnago on Fri Apr 10, 2015 11:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 10:25 pm 
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Calnago wrote:
Sometimes the nicer things in life don't have to make sense.

?

But if they don't feel 'nice' - regardless of what little sense they might make, they're not really 'nice' are they?


Thanks c50, I've read your posts before and know about your love for the brand. Not especially looking for that. Or a groupset debate. But given your knowledge, what improvements would you make on them? Which could be a redundant question, as there's been a few newer models that don't appear to be in our collection.

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 10, 2015 11:10 pm 
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:). They feel very nice as well.

I, like c50jim, also sold my first Colnago (also a C40) to a friend when the C50's came out. I've had two C50's and C59 and and my favorite, the EPS/C59 hybrid. Beautiful, solid bikes. Have no intention of ever getting rid of any of them, regardless of what bikes I might get in the future. The Trek Emonda SL I recently built up rides very nice and I was able to get the exact same fit as on my Colnagos. The ride is a little more stable on the Colnagos due to slightly longer wheelbase, while the trek has a steeper headtube combined with a quite shallow fork rake for a road bike these days at 40mm, versus 43mm for the Colnagos. But that's kinda what I wanted to test out. You really have to set up and ride them for yourselves. If you just want a "tool" to race on, then a lot of bikes will do. But if you want something just a little (or a lot) more special then there aren't many bikes that still have that cachet. There's nothing I'd change about them, the incremental sizing they've had is superb. The quality of workmanship is stellar and they are just built to last as opposed to being used for a couple seasons before you get tired of it or break it and want something else. But, they are not going to win you any more races if that's what you're after. That's still 100 percent rider effort.

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PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2015 3:40 am 
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I , for one , am on the heavier side of riders (~200lbs) . I kept my c59 after upgrading the clx3.0 amidst my other 5 high end roadbikes and 2 high end TT bikes, ended up always returning to ride on the c59 after riding them back to back. I sold the remainder bikes to fund for a bespoke LEGEND frame. The ride on the LEGEND is fantastic ! But then again, everytime I ride the c59, it brings a sense of joy and really just reminds me of why I took up cycling. Its just how the bike is built I suppose. Exact same compo ( wheels, cockpits , groupsets) mimicking as close as I can for reach, stacks etc. But the c59 is just that nice. I did eventually sell my 3 year old C59, because I simply couldnt justify not riding my LEGEND over the c59. Long story short, here I am now, a proud owner of a newly delivered c60 which I have yet to ride.

Theres just a feel for the colnago thats "just right" . Not too much, Not too little, but Just Right. If your after a stiff frame, the C59 isnt one. If your after a Nimble frame, the c59 is not on the top of contention. But if your after a ride for them "feels", I wouldnt gaze past a c59. My 0.02$. Very subjective, but its very individualistic .


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PostPosted: Sat Apr 11, 2015 3:54 am 
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Tinea, first, I confess, I love Colnagos.
I agree with Calnago, there is something intangible about these bikes that is visually attractive and to my eye makes them beautiful. That is what's 'nice' about Colnagos. Admit that is subjective.
I have a c50 and a c59. Both traditional geo. I will keep them forever. (some of the paintjobs date more quickly than others but I don't think mine will).
If key things are in proportion such as saddle to bar drop, decent stem length, slammed if possible, traditional bars, shallow wheels together with the slimmer tubes (I know the c60 has moved towards bigger tubing) the combination of traditional and modern design elements in the frame just 'work'.
As to performance, I also agree with Calnago, with a big engine you can ride anything fast. Choose any high end brand. Doesn't hurt if you have fast tubs with nice tyres.
If I could identify a big performance factor that distinguishes the brand it is the Colnago geometry. The angles give a very 'solid and stable' feel on the road. Combined with the slightly heavier frame (I've had lighter Scotts and Williers) I feel confident on the bike and that means I can push hard downhill and into and out of corners and smash it in the drops. In that respect I am in kgt's first group - I know what to expect. When I buy the c60 I won't bother with a test ride.
Can I add to characteristics of kgts first group - the person who buys a colnago appreciates that he/she will keep the frame for many many years - have some beautiful experiences - there'll be a history - it's not just for one or two years then hung up in the shed. Any other cycling brands that prompt these emotions? I can think of watch, clothing, leathergoods, furniture brands but not cycling. I appreciate people will see these bikes as objects but for me they are much more.
My one gripe are the integrated acros headsets - I've had to adjust my c59 regularly. I have a chrisking on the c50 that I haven't touched for over 7 years.

When I got into riding about 15 years ago I rode (and still ride) with a chap who bough a c40, black gloss with the little white moon faces. I thought 'that's the business' (he still has it. And he has a c50) From then I always wanted a Colnago. My parents bought me a c50 frame as a university graduation present.

We're working harder, are more stressed and have less spare time. Why not add something special to your daily life that elevates keeping fit/commuting/racing/smashing your mates into a higher experience? Riding a Colnago does that for me for a couple of hours every day - then I am back to the daily grind. Try to find a bike, jersey, socks (whatever) that does this for you. I've found mine. Once found, you won't even blink at the $$.


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Posted: Sat Apr 11, 2015 3:54 am 


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