Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Price Porn: Vintage Campagnolo Early 1960s Front Derailleur RARE!


Sold: $192.28 including shipping

Likely won by: Manual Bid (more than 10 seconds before auction end).

This listing is for a RARE vintage Campagnolo rear derailleur from the early-1960s. This is the 1st Generation parallelogram design with the built-in cable stop. Given its age it is in absolutely amazing condition. The chrome on the cage is virtually perfect; there is no rust, pits or corrosion. Just some very minor marks (on the inside only) from the chain. From 5 feet away it looks brand new.

The minor variants of early Campagnolo Record front derailleurs are numerous. Generally though, the defining characteristics of this derailleur are the above-mentioned cable stop and the lack of a circlip on the upper/outer parallelogram pivot.

While it could be used on any standard bike, the most appropriate frame would have a corresponding braze- or clamp-on cable stop on the downtube near the bottom bracket, and the cable would run through a short section of housing between the two.

As framebuilding fashion veered first towards clamp-on (late 1960s), and then braze-on (mid-70s) bottom bracket cable guides, the vestigial stop was eliminated. The Velo Retro Campy Timeline shows that the circlip was introduced in 1972, but doesn't indicate when the stop disappeared; I suspect it was years earlier.

Somehow, the housing stops on the downtube shifters survived much longer, decades after full-housing derailleur cable runs were common. Anyone know why?

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More on Campy Fronts here.

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