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View Full Version : FS: Ben Serotta-built Serotta Club Series road bike 57cm w/ Campy/3TTT/MAFAC/etc.


temeyone
05-04-2018, 09:04 PM
Here's one I said I'd never sell, but an assortment of major life events is forcing the sale (not to worry, these are good life events! Just expensive...). In any case, it's a BEAUTIFUL Serotta Club Special, late 70s/early 80s era based on frame fittings. Super long point carved lugs, flat fork crown, scalloped seatstay caps...the craftsmanship is phenomenal. Frame is in great shape, and although there are some scuffs and minor chips, it's in superb condition given its age, and there's really no corrosion to be found. Some normal wear to components, but nothing worth mentioning other than some scrapes on the rear rim from a poor job of padding when transporting it to storage. It's been really well-kept.
The parts are kind of a who's who of durable, well-funtioning touring/dirt road-worthy componentry of the era - MAFAC GT (in gold!) centerpulls/levers, Sugino Mighty Comp cranks (171mm), Suntour VX/Compe V derailleurs and shifters, Campy Nuovo Tipo high flange hubs built to Rigida 13-19 700c rims (fresh Paselas mounted), 3TTT Record stem and Superleggera bars (85mm/40cm) and very rare 3TTT seatpost attached to a custom carved Ideale leather saddle with bag loops. Campy TT cable guides, MAFAC rear cable guide. This is a really, REALLY great bike. I don't think you'll ever come across another quite like this, in this condition, with this caliber of parts.

57cm ST, 55cm TT (both c-t-c), 150mm HT

*NOW PENDING* $925 net. Hoping to sell to someone in the NYC area, but will ship via BikeFlights if needed at buyer's cost.

temeyone
05-04-2018, 09:06 PM
And some more photos

Andy sti
05-04-2018, 09:09 PM
Beautiful and so cool!

rccardr
05-05-2018, 03:13 AM
There's your plug-and-play Eroica bike, right there.

weisan
05-05-2018, 04:04 AM
An important piece of history in American framebuilding, certainly worth more than the asking price. Unfortunately, I don't have any more room for another bike. I mean, I literally ran out of space. :D

spinarelli
05-05-2018, 10:19 AM
Gold mafac, nice!

bobswire
05-05-2018, 10:24 AM
That bike is simply irresistible (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UrGw_cOgwa8).

temeyone
05-06-2018, 05:55 PM
Just as an FYI, 28mm tires currently mounted with tons of room left. Meant for fenders, but will run at least 35s without.

Andrevich4
05-06-2018, 09:00 PM
How is this bike still here? That's awesome in the sort of way that I didn't know I needed a bike like this til it popped up.

Hilltopperny
05-07-2018, 03:09 PM
Not my size, but man that is an awesome bike. I briefly owned a Ben built tandem that I later found out he built for his own use. It was one of the nicest and coolest steel bikes I've ever seen. Really like the build as well.

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temeyone
05-16-2018, 02:56 PM
Plenty of interested parties but this is still around. Happy to meet up with any local NYC folks who want to take a look/test ride it.

redearedslider5
05-16-2018, 04:59 PM
Interested in the frame/fork/headset if you decide to part out.

temeyone
05-26-2018, 11:23 AM
Sorry, trying to limit this to sale as a complete right now, but I'll let you know if that changes :cool:

temeyone
06-13-2018, 11:38 AM
Dropping this to $1350 net, shipping optional

temeyone
06-22-2018, 09:55 AM
Big drop to $1250 net plus ship

temeyone
06-26-2018, 04:59 PM
Up again!

temeyone
07-03-2018, 10:49 AM
Feels like 100 degrees in NYC right now, but would feel a lot cooler if someone bought this amazing bike!

temeyone
07-14-2018, 11:05 AM
Been a while, time to bump for a gorgeous all-rounder

redearedslider5
07-14-2018, 01:49 PM
Sorry, trying to limit this to sale as a complete right now, but I'll let you know if that changes :cool:

Has this changed?

temeyone
07-14-2018, 03:52 PM
Not yet! I would be so heartbroken to see this all split up.

temeyone
08-08-2018, 07:45 PM
Ok, anyone interested at $1200?

temeyone
08-19-2018, 06:43 PM
Price dropped to $1150! I honestly can't go much lower but really could free up the space

weisan
08-19-2018, 06:55 PM
Price dropped to $1150! I honestly can't go much lower but really could free up the space

Ben should buy it back and use it at trade shows.

redearedslider5
08-19-2018, 07:07 PM
Has this changed?

?

binxnyrwarrsoul
08-19-2018, 07:13 PM
This belongs in a museum. Or on someone's wall.

Hilltopperny
08-19-2018, 07:18 PM
That really is a gorgeous bike. If it had a shorter seat tube I’d drive down and pick it up. No doubt that this is a rare bird.


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pbarry
08-19-2018, 08:54 PM
Gold mafac, nice!

Thevenet won two TDF's on gold Mafacs. :)

temeyone
09-12-2018, 02:19 PM
Bumping on a rainy day because this would be perfect when the sun comes back out!

temeyone
09-19-2018, 05:37 PM
Dropped to $1100 even. Just sprained the hell out of both hands in a wreck and could use the cash

temeyone
09-22-2018, 10:50 AM
Bump

temeyone
09-30-2018, 06:37 PM
Let's drop it once more. $1050 net

temeyone
12-04-2018, 03:59 PM
Bumping again for the Xmas crowd. Completely shocked that no one has picked this up! The brakes alone are worth almost half the asking!

Cat3roadracer
12-04-2018, 05:29 PM
Any idea of the serial number? I believe it is on the steering tube.

Might this be the oldest Serotta on the forum?

temeyone
12-12-2018, 07:58 AM
So, after looking around the bike, the only marking I could find (with my semi-untrained eye) was an "F" stamped on the BB shell. Not sure what that might indicate.

Shoeman
12-12-2018, 09:05 AM
I have the same frame the serial number will be located on the steerer tube.

temeyone
12-12-2018, 09:23 AM
Is it near the crown or the top? I pulled the fork out partially but saw nothing. If it's higher up maybe I missed it.

Shoeman
12-12-2018, 09:30 AM
Mine is near the crown, kinda hard to read (small stamping) mine reads bs256.

temeyone
12-12-2018, 01:52 PM
Copy that. I'll take another peek tonight and report back

temeyone
03-13-2019, 05:18 PM
Springtime-ish bump!

temeyone
03-13-2019, 06:01 PM
Corrected

temeyone
03-20-2019, 09:07 PM
Spring bump!

temeyone
03-25-2019, 03:02 PM
Up!

temeyone
06-23-2019, 01:20 PM
Bump!

stephenmarklay
06-23-2019, 03:44 PM
What a great bike.

temeyone
07-12-2019, 02:16 PM
Still trying to find someone to add this beauty to their collection :banana:

zambenini
07-12-2019, 04:35 PM
Can't believe it is still here. A beaut. I would love to have but I need to reduce not acquire.

temeyone
07-20-2019, 12:04 PM
Pains me to drop this so low, but I'd be willing to sell for $1k net, again, preferably to someone local to NYC but willing to ship for cost of BikeFlights

temeyone
08-06-2019, 05:06 PM
Can't believe I'm dropping this to $950 net, but it needs to find a new home.

temeyone
08-13-2019, 11:20 AM
Another bump for a criminally underpriced bicycle :banana:

temeyone
08-28-2019, 08:58 PM
Up again for the night owls on the East Coast and the late afternoon birds out West

alexchoi
08-28-2019, 10:42 PM
truly beautiful bike

temeyone
09-20-2019, 07:32 AM
Guys, HOW? Howwwww? How is this still around? Someone somewhere would love this bike. I'm half tempted to keep it just as a beautiful object. But alas, I need it gone

temeyone
10-29-2019, 09:32 AM
Dropping to $925 net :banana:

temeyone
11-17-2019, 05:35 PM
Long overdue bump for someone's #grailbike

XXtwindad
11-22-2019, 12:01 PM
Bump for a beautiful bike and a really cool dude. Can't believe no one has scooped this up yet …

XXtwindad
12-13-2019, 02:55 PM
Bday bump! :)

temeyone
12-14-2019, 12:59 AM
Thanks! Out in Palm Springs with my lady enjoying it! :)

Hawker
12-14-2019, 09:40 AM
Glad to hear you're enjoying it. But if its still for sale perhaps you should also try Ebay? Maybe someone will see it as a Christmas gift to themselves or someone else? Would be a real shame to see this one parted out.

GLWS.

jzisk
01-07-2020, 09:35 AM
If it's still for sale, I'll buy.
email: jlzisk@gmail.com
or text: 607/342-2415
Jonathan Zisk

temeyone
01-10-2020, 09:48 PM
Well all, I’m a very odd, very stressful situation wherein the new owner of this bicycle, who drove down to Brooklyn this morning to pick it up, is disputing the authenticity of it, claiming it’s not a Serotta. Are there any owners of similarly very-early era Serottas that could weigh in on any details they see that may mark it as such? If it’s indeed not, I’m of course happy to work with him.

Thanks in advance for any help on this.

temeyone
01-10-2020, 10:11 PM
For reference, here’s where I posted it not long after meeting up with the woman who sold it via eBay to pick it up in person. Several members who definitely know their stuff remarked at how similar to theirs it was. Tough call.

https://forums.thepaceline.net/showthread.php?t=120954

temeyone
01-10-2020, 10:37 PM
If anyone has Ben Serotta’s contact, I’d love to get in touch with him about this. I’m in disbelief. Everything I’ve seen, heard, or read about Serottas of this era supports it being exactly what it claims to be.

Shoeman
01-11-2020, 12:43 AM
Well all, I’m a very odd, very stressful situation wherein the new owner of this bicycle, who drove down to Brooklyn this morning to pick it up, is disputing the authenticity of it, claiming it’s not a Serotta. Are there any owners of similarly very-early era Serottas that could weigh in on any details they see that may mark it as such? If it’s indeed not, I’m of course happy to work with him.

Thanks in advance for any help on this.

I have the same bike in the same size, the steerer tube is stamped bs256. Built by Ben I believe probably around 1975. Bike came with the Black Dura Ace group. Hope this helps you out!!!!!
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1_3-WV-yHHPV31ubWaEtdoIiFFRAKxZNQ/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1cMPrjQsn-lZ4VNoDYr8V9WEEbVCBLn4f/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1_c51zWM_nAb0kuv9U71D_Vx-N8s0ie7N/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1E3dK8SCtHNvKMRdDq_e27RKWgRn1uUbt/view?usp=sharing

Andrevich4
01-11-2020, 01:02 AM
If anyone has Ben Serotta’s contact, I’d love to get in touch with him about this. I’m in disbelief. Everything I’ve seen, heard, or read about Serottas of this era supports it being exactly what it claims to be.

Sorry to hear about this. Looks like a great bike and the real deal. What did the buyer say made him think something was wrong?

temeyone
01-11-2020, 07:37 AM
He stated that the brazing on the fork seemed sloppier than he expected, the decals were over the paint, and the seatpin bolt assembly using a hollow-bolt design. I never noticed the brazing being sloppy, and attributed the decals over the paint as being a product of it being a bike from the 70s when such a thing wasn’t uncommon. As for the hollow-bolt seatpin, I would assume if someone wanted to run centerpulls, the options would be limited, as one would have to use a seatpin that incorporates a cable stop.

The odd point is the apparent lack of a SN on the steerer. I was unable to find one, and the only stamp of any sort I could find was an “F” on the BB shell. That would be what I’d ask Ben about.

temeyone
01-11-2020, 09:07 AM
I have the same bike in the same size, the steerer tube is stamped bs256. Built by Ben I believe probably around 1975. Bike came with the Black Dura Ace group. Hope this helps you out!!!!!
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1_3-WV-yHHPV31ubWaEtdoIiFFRAKxZNQ/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1cMPrjQsn-lZ4VNoDYr8V9WEEbVCBLn4f/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1_c51zWM_nAb0kuv9U71D_Vx-N8s0ie7N/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1E3dK8SCtHNvKMRdDq_e27RKWgRn1uUbt/view?usp=sharing

Thank you! This looks exactly like the one I had, to a T. Decals over paint, identical lugwork and fork crown, identical cable routing, for some reason the first photo isn’t showing up, but I would not be surprised to see an identical seat cluster.

Shoeman
01-11-2020, 09:40 AM
The seat cluster is the same not sure why it is not showing up try this one.
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1zz6WYN7Z68xuaE-kjQcRG1NzGzItDBpc/view?usp=sharing
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1rBgv3ItOQfjWIBLQOVb47rRQejVw8gCm/view?usp=sharing

Shoeman
01-11-2020, 10:01 AM
My frame has the F on the bottom bracket also, some people have said he also put a SN on the one of the inside rear dropouts. I rattle caned my frame/fork as the paint was mostly missing preserving the decals at the time.Water decals were the way they did it back then, Velocals has all of them except for the Club Series decals.

temeyone
01-11-2020, 10:09 AM
Thank you again, this indeed seems to match all of the details on mine

temeyone
01-11-2020, 10:27 AM
Oh my god guys, this has gone from bad to worse. The buyer stopped payment on the check he wrote me for this, leaving me with no bike and no money. All while I’m working feverishly to determine authenticity. I’m at a complete loss.

temeyone
01-11-2020, 10:29 AM
I’m pretty sure I just got scammed out of both $925 and a bike. If anyone can offer advice on what I can do in this situation, please help me out

XXtwindad
01-11-2020, 10:48 AM
I’m pretty sure I just got scammed out of both $925 and a bike. If anyone can offer advice on what I can do in this situation, please help me out

I'm so sorry you're going through this. You're one of my "Favorite Paceliners I've never met." I really hope this gets resolved to your benefit. Please keep us posted.

XX

Shoeman
01-11-2020, 10:57 AM
Get he local authorities his & yours involved. I'd be knocking on his door with some of my close friends if you know what I mean, (to take back what is rightfully yours).

XXtwindad
01-11-2020, 10:59 AM
Get he local authorities his & yours involved. I'd be knocking on his door with some of my close friends if you know what I mean, (to take back what is rightfully yours).

With all due respect, don't do that.

Hilltopperny
01-11-2020, 11:03 AM
If anyone has Ben Serotta’s contact, I’d love to get in touch with him about this. I’m in disbelief. Everything I’ve seen, heard, or read about Serottas of this era supports it being exactly what it claims to be.



Contact red rider. Stephen Leboyer at Saville road in Delmar. I traded him Bens old tandem from the same era as your bike. I would say it is definitely authentic from what I can tell.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Hilltopperny
01-11-2020, 11:11 AM
Pretty messed up all things considered. If you did a face to face transaction then the buyer should have given you cash. Sounds like they may have set you up which is really disheartening to say the least. I have seen my share of Serottas and yours definitely looks like an early example. To claim it’s inauthenticity after physically retrieving it sounds like a real shady move. Writing a check and cancelling it without returning the bike is criminal.

I see he has a 607 area code. Would you mind divulging where in the 607 they came from?


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temeyone
01-11-2020, 11:15 AM
Thanks for all the sentiments, guys. I’m still trying to work things out as amicably as possible, but feeling really anxious about the whole deal. For what it’s worth, the buyer is from Ithaca, NY.

Hilltopperny
01-11-2020, 11:30 AM
Thanks for all the sentiments, guys. I’m still trying to work things out as amicably as possible, but feeling really anxious about the whole deal. For what it’s worth, the buyer is from Ithaca, NY.



I would try and contact Stephen LeBoyer at Saville Road. He is in contact with Ben and knows how to reach him. He would also likely be able authenticate the bike if need be. Good luck!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Hawker
01-11-2020, 01:23 PM
Sorry to hear about all this and trust it will work out.

Everything I do these days, assuming a sale is in-person, is done with real cash. That includes cars and motorcycles up to $8,000. And with that much money I often insist on meeting in a public place if I don't really know the person.

Cat3roadracer
01-11-2020, 03:14 PM
Not to devalue 1k, but driving from Ithaca to Brooklyn seems like a lot of work.

andrew+
01-11-2020, 03:50 PM
I don't think there's any question of the bike's authenticity. Decals on top of paint is absolutely to be expected for a mid '70s bike.

temeyone
01-11-2020, 04:12 PM
I agree fully, and I feel like picking it up in person gives a buyer every opportunity to check it out. As for the check thing, I would never expect a member of this forum to pull this sort of thing. I realize I was being extremely naive in doing so, but I guess I just had higher hopes, especially after a really friendly, down to earth chat with him. For things to go this far south is a shock. Situations like this really erode my ability to trust the community, which is such a sad thing.

andrew+
01-11-2020, 04:36 PM
I agree fully, and I feel like picking it up in person gives a buyer every opportunity to check it out. As for the check thing, I would never expect a member of this forum to pull this sort of thing. I realize I was being extremely naive in doing so, but I guess I just had higher hopes, especially after a really friendly, down to earth chat with him. For things to go this far south is a shock. Situations like this really erode my ability to trust the community, which is such a sad thing.

It was a bad idea, but understandable. The only bad actor in this situation is the buyer - who should be outed, banned, tarred, feathered.

Getting the bike back will probably be a pain, but you have every legal right to it. I hope it turns out well for you.

Hilltopperny
01-11-2020, 04:54 PM
It was a bad idea, but understandable. The only bad actor in this situation is the buyer - who should be outed, banned, tarred, feathered.

Getting the bike back will probably be a pain, but you have every legal right to it. I hope it turns out well for you.


If it's still for sale, I'll buy.
removed personal information
Jonathan Zisk

Strange way to behave after physically seeing the bike and then cancelling a check after a bogus claim that the bike isn’t authentic. If there was some sort of doubt then he shouldn’t have bought it in the first place.

Accepting a check from a forum member isn’t typically met with such a bad deal. I have mailed stuff out to other members here before the check even made it, but in person transactions have always been cash or prepaid through PayPal before they made the trip.


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jzisk
01-12-2020, 07:21 AM
I'm the buyer of this ersatz Serotta.

I determined it's a fake when I uncovered several very shoddy construction methods, and poor finishing, as I diasssembled.

I stopped payment because John started to question my very clear evaluation.

I sent him detailed photo's which he ought to post for your viewing.

The bike is packed for return to him tomorrow morning.
JZ

jzisk
01-12-2020, 07:30 AM
PS: It's not jus the decals.

I owned 5 Serottas over the years.
Including one that I had to ask Ben for help confirming.
That one had the head and seat-tube decals this one has--
Which is why I was so excited.

This one has awful brazing on a cheap Nervex imitation crown;
It has a hollow seat-bolt clamp at the cluster;
it has no serial number on the fork, and a stamped "F" on the BB;
The BB is seamed not cast, and the seam is no filed;
it has domed ends, not scalloped, with sloppy brazing.
And the newer Club Series in the wrong place, over clearcoat.

If I'm wrong and Ben confirms authenticity, I'll be surprised.
I'll also wonder what was going on in his shop in those early years.

In any case, John went from apologetic to questioning to no contact.
I'm sorry if I was gauche, but the idea of a long, drawn out hassle was unfair. too.

jzisk
01-12-2020, 07:42 AM
OK-- Now I've read all your replies to John.
Particularly the photo's.
I'll call my bank tomorrow morning to reverse the stop payment.
I'm not sure what Ben was doing with this level of questionable craftsmanship.
Nothing like my Club Special or my very early no-name-but-decal'd Serotta.

I stand behind my actions, because I got scared that John was going to drag it out.

But I'm horribly embarrassed and sorry at this point.

Anyway, he won't even see a hiccup in the cash.
And if there are any understanding people on the Paceline, my name won't entirely be mud.

jzisk
01-12-2020, 08:25 AM
PS: Thanks to those who posted convincing evidence.
I thought I knew Ben Serotta's work well.
Well, I didn't.

temeyone
01-12-2020, 08:34 AM
For the forum to hear:

I stopped talking to Jon after he claimed to have stopped payment on his check, a move that was very aggressive and heavy-handed.

I don’t know how to prove any further than I have that this frame is authentic, and there’s no reason to doubt it. I think the forum has been more than amazing in helping with this, and although Ben has yet to respond to my email, I am confident he’d back me up too.

My honest thought is that at some point, Jon decided that he didn’t want this bike, and went to work finding a reason to return it. I’ll be honest; I believe that if someone comes to pick a thing up in person, that sale is final. Had there been a crack in the frame or rust eating away from the inside, it would be a different story. But to approach this matter so heavy-handedly after an otherwise really pleasant meeting is shocking.

I’ve been in contact with my bank, and they haven’t seen any indication that a stop payment was ever placed. To threaten me with that was not only aggressive, but to not actually even have done it while claiming so was foolish. I was ready to work with Jon to make things right, but at this point, his actions have led me to call this final.

If anyone thinks I’m being rash, I’d be happy to send screenshots of our conversation to back myself up.

This has caused loads of undue stress and absolutely ruined what should have been a great weekend.

jzisk
01-12-2020, 08:43 AM
I am an old fart, with lots of human-services career and bicycle contributions to bettering the world.

This whole episode has convinced me of the dangers of texts and short-form postings on internet forums.

If John had just called on the phone, voice-to-voice, after I stopped payment, maybe he could have reassured me that we weren't headed for a 3-month, dragged out dispute. Also, we might, together, have posted my alarm and fears on Paceline, to get all of your instrumental replies, instead of turning it into something bordering on nasty.

I probably sound defensive and self-serving. I surely feel defensive. But there's a community out there too, that needs to question itself. One of you took my phone number, after John posted it here, and sent me a text saying "stole someone's Serotta..." Very nice. Yes I know, stopping payment on John's check wasn't very nice either. But his texted questions to me about my position got scary. Gotta love texting, for it's clarity, finesse, and unambiguous expression. Gotta love forums, for their benevolence. Is it "LOL"?

Anyway, truly, thank you to those of you who helped me see my error, that I didn't impulsively, accidentally rush out 200 miles and back for a fake.

Gsinill
01-12-2020, 09:14 AM
...Also, we might, together, have posted my alarm and fears on Paceline, to get all of your instrumental replies, instead of turning it into something bordering on nasty.

Fact is, he did and you did not.
Besides all the hassle and pain for the seller, it's sad that one action/behavior like this damages the trust and good faith on this forum that all the positive transactions have established.

OtayBW
01-12-2020, 09:36 AM
This whole episode has convinced me of the dangers of texts and short-form postings on internet forums.

If John had just called on the phone, voice-to-voice, after I stopped payment, maybe he could have reassured me that we weren't headed for a 3-month, dragged out dispute. Also, we might, together, have posted my alarm and fears on Paceline, to get all of your instrumental replies, instead of turning it into something bordering on nasty.
Perhaps you could have taken some initiative here yourself....

charliedid
01-12-2020, 10:08 AM
:banana:

Andrevich4
01-12-2020, 10:57 AM
OK-- Now I've read all your replies to John.
Particularly the photo's.
I'll call my bank tomorrow morning to reverse the stop payment.
I'm not sure what Ben was doing with this level of questionable craftsmanship.
Nothing like my Club Special or my very early no-name-but-decal'd Serotta.

I stand behind my actions, because I got scared that John was going to drag it out.

But I'm horribly embarrassed and sorry at this point.

Anyway, he won't even see a hiccup in the cash.
And if there are any understanding people on the Paceline, my name won't entirely be mud.


Haven’t read the follow on but I think this message says it all. Thanks for taking responsibility. All a misunderstanding that played out in public. I’ll go back to believing all is right with the world now!

Andrevich4
01-12-2020, 10:58 AM
...it's sad that one action/behavior like this damages the trust and good faith on this forum that all the positive transactions have established.

Let’s not let it. Delete the thread from the forum and everyone’s memory.

jzisk
01-12-2020, 11:38 AM
Let’s not let it. Delete the thread from the forum and everyone’s memory.


I'm for that.

jzisk
01-12-2020, 11:44 AM
Perhaps you could have taken some initiative here yourself....

I was away all day, but spent the day texting John over and over again, and then sent him 12 close up photo's that night when I got back home.

XXtwindad
01-12-2020, 12:01 PM
What an unfortunate situation. The seller, in all my correspondences with him, seems like a really great guy with a good sense of humor. The buyer seems like an erudite guy with a lot of bike knowledge.

The whole thing could've been avoided by (1) not taking a check and (2) the buyer being less impetuous.

The really interesting "X Factor" here is the Forum. On one hand, it acts as a prophylactic, using the power of community to shame any transgressors. On the other hand, go too far in that direction, and you have "mob rules."

A1A
01-12-2020, 12:26 PM
As a long time Serotta fanboy and having owned several early 80's to late 80's steel lugged bikes (still own an 87' Colorado) I'm interested in the buyers "take" on the quality of craftmanship. My oldest was an 83' Nova Special and seemed to exemplify stellar quality of build in regards to everything the buyer was pointing out as less than so. I guess I had kind of the same impression, that anything that came from Serotta was of the utmost quality in materials (my Nova had a Cinelli bottom bracket shell and Columbus tubing) and build quality. I guess on some level I'm surprised to read about sloppy brazing and possibly knock off components amongst other things?

I've seen a few Club Specials over the years and they all looked superb, at least to me. Never seen a Serotta as old as this one. Maybe some of the early frames weren't quite as high a build quality as perceived by those who haven't seen one? No idea, just a question.

Funny thing is the first time I ever heard of Serotta was in the summer of 1974. I was working in Plattsburg NY and the friend of a friend of mine was going to Plattsburg State. They were both heavily into cycling, I knew nothing about it. But the friend of a friend had a summer job at a bike shop in Glens Falls (Inside Edge I think) and he kept talking about this new local frame builder in the Glens Falls / Saratoga are named Ben Serotta. When I started cycling in the early 80's I remembered the name, went and bought the Nova and haven't ridden much of anything but Serotta's since for better or worse. Wish I still had the Nova!!

temeyone
01-12-2020, 12:40 PM
What an unfortunate situation. The seller, in all my correspondences with him, seems like a really great guy with a good sense of humor. The buyer seems like an erudite guy with a lot of bike knowledge.

The whole thing could've been avoided by (1) not taking a check and (2) the buyer being less impetuous.

The really interesting "X Factor" here is the Forum. On one hand, it acts as a prophylactic, using the power of community to shame any transgressors. On the other hand, go too far in that direction, and you have "mob rules."

I absolutely agree. I posted everything here as a means of expressing my situation in a public forum that almost universally does a great job of self-policing. I never intended for anyone to reach out to the buyer with threats, something that could have been avoided had he not posted his contact information within this thread.
I’m feeling scarred by the experience, as I’m sure he is too. I wish the story could have resolved itself differently.

jzisk
01-12-2020, 01:01 PM
As a long time Serotta fanboy and having owned several early 80's to late 80's steel lugged bikes (still own an 87' Colorado) I'm interested in the buyers "take" on the quality of craftmanship. My oldest was an 83' Nova Special and seemed to exemplify stellar quality of build in regards to everything the buyer was pointing out as less than so. I guess I had kind of the same impression, that anything that came from Serotta was of the utmost quality in materials (my Nova had a Cinelli bottom bracket shell and Columbus tubing) and build quality. I guess on some level I'm surprised to read about sloppy brazing and possibly knock off components amongst other things?

I've seen a few Club Specials over the years and they all looked superb, at least to me. Never seen a Serotta as old as this one. Maybe some of the early frames weren't quite as high a build quality as perceived by those who haven't seen one? No idea, just a question.

Funny thing is the first time I ever heard of Serotta was in the summer of 1974. I was working in Plattsburg NY and the friend of a friend of mine was going to Plattsburg State. They were both heavily into cycling, I knew nothing about it. But the friend of a friend had a summer job at a bike shop in Glens Falls (Inside Edge I think) and he kept talking about this new local frame builder in the Glens Falls / Saratoga are named Ben Serotta. When I started cycling in the early 80's I remembered the name, went and bought the Nova and haven't ridden much of anything but Serotta's since for better or worse. Wish I still had the Nova!!

It's interesting, the Serotta per se angle.

All my relatively late Serotta's were impeccable, if clearly formulaic (Legend, Colorado CRL, and Fierte-- They are invariant in their builds). My earlier Club Special was beautifully brazed and filed and finished. My even earlier, head-and-seat-tube oval-decal'd Serotta (that scared me enough to contact Ben to confirm) was beautifully built too-- But it had extensive, rounded filing to the lug-points, and a strange sort of afterthought brake-bridge bolt-hole reinforcement (hence the emails to Ben). It was really well built, but seemed like a different "signature".

The bike I just bought from temyone (I've been saying "John" like a rube) looks like the build quality and choices are scattered all over the place-- The fork crown is Nervex, with no reinforcing tabs (touring, not racing), which is maybe understandable, but it's heavily, sloppily filled with the brazing from underneath, and it has zero filing or refinement to the filigree on the outside. The seat-cluster is hollow (and that is not the only way you can use Mafac-style hangers, as someone erroneously said), and it is roughly brazed on the inside. The BB shell is poorly finished, with zero filing. But the lugs are beautifully filed.

Anyway, I don't care-- I committed to the purchase, and was backing out, tremulously, when I thought it was a fake and thought it would be a difficult return. The clincher convincing me I was wrong was the two postings on Paceline that had simple, good evidence. I know I own a historic, if odd, Serotta.

Thanks to all who helped, and oh well to all who shredded me.

Keith A
01-12-2020, 02:47 PM
I don't think there is anything more that needs to be said in a public forum about this issue, and so I'm closing this discussion. If anyone feels differently, feel free to PM me.

Shoeman
01-12-2020, 03:10 PM
I never thought of Ben Serotta as a Master Craftsman (Artisan) but more of a builder of workman type bikes that rode exceptionally well.