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  1. #1
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    Anybody miss the polished silver component groups?

    it seems the past decade has been all about the black (noir), greys, and colours close to those two things.

    Man I miss the beauty of the old component polished silver groups. The 8 and 9 speed stuff was just gorgeous---still is , in fact.

    I know that Campy made a stab with their recent (past 2 years) Potenza 11 speed group in polished silver. As nice as it is, I cannot go the campy route because then that means I've got to stock up on all things Campy-related, which becomes an enormous cost when one already has groups of Shimano & SRAM.

    Anyway, just wondering if there's anyone like me wishing, say, Shimano would shock the world for a year or two and release the same beautiful polished silver/chrome groups in 11 and/or their coming 12 speed groups.

    Heck, even if was only in the through-the-nose-bleed-price of Dura Ace, I'd probably pony up for a groupo or two.

    This past black decade has run its course-----we are in need of a change. Come on, Shimano, or SRAM, "shock the bicycling" world and go retro for awhile. To hell with carbon and all the colours stuck related to it.


    [Edit: Potenza, not Potanza...]
    Last edited by BelgianHammer; 03-29-2018 at 05:21 AM.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by BelgianHammer View Post
    it seems the past decade has been all about the black (noir), greys, and colours close to those two things.

    Man I miss the beauty of the old component polished silver groups. The 8 and 9 speed stuff was just gorgeous---still is , in fact.

    I know that Campy made a stab with their recent (past 2 years) Potenza 11 speed group in polished silver. As nice as it is, I cannot go the campy route because then that means I've got to stock up on all things Campy-related, which becomes an enormous cost when one already has groups of Shimano & SRAM.

    Anyway, just wondering if there's anyone like me wishing, say, Shimano would shock the world for a year or two and release the same beautiful polished silver/chrome groups in 11 and/or their coming 12 speed groups.

    Heck, even if was only in the through-the-nose-bleed-price of Dura Ace, I'd probably pony up for a groupo or two.

    This past black decade has run its course-----we are in need of a change. Come on, Shimano, or SRAM, "shock the bicycling" world and go retro for awhile. To hell with carbon and all the colours stuck related to it.


    [Edit: Potenza, not Potanza...]
    Agree. As a steel guy I would never put a black group on a steel frame; it just doesn't look right to me. I am OK with it on my Ti and soulless plastic bikes though. I am already a Campy guy so other than being limited in groups I can still find stuff. Maybe Shimano will take a stab at a more retro look, if there is enough market

  3. #3
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    Def miss it.

    Like what Shimano did with the r785 shifters...too bad they didn't do that to the rest

  4. #4
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    I do think particularly the 9100 crank would look very nice in polished silver. A return to more appealing "colorways" (as the term is now) for frames would be nice too. The black components look good on black carbon bikes as you say, but something like the Colnago paint jobs on more brands would be really nice.

    OTOH, I'm sure one of the things driving the black gruppos is the increased use of carbon in many parts - levers, dereailleurs, even cranks. An all polished "silver" gruppo would probably carry a non-trivial weight penalty.
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  5. #5
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    I have a steel frame that I want to have painted and then build it up modern (shifter/brake levers) but without shiny stuff it's hard to motivate myself to do it.
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  6. #6
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    am a fan of black in general...most of the furniture in the house, a lot of clothing, and my car are that color.

    but, agree that murdered out bikes have become far too common and uninteresting.

    my bike would look hideous with all black components. had a set of DA C24s with pewter-colored hubs that were a perfect match for the bare Ti parts of it. had to replace them and all I could find were the 9000-series with black hubs. doesn't look nearly as nice...
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  7. #7
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    I honestly do not miss it at all.

    Also, pre-9100 Dura Ace cranks look so dated. I was never fond of the two tone 9000 and 7900 look, and the 7800 is horrendous.

  8. #8
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    In an industry based on having the latest and greatest technology for lighter, stronger, and better working parts, I don't see any major company coming out with anything 'retro designed'.

    I'm a younger guy who only got into cycling 5-6 years ago, so I absolutely don't care for the old style polished look. I think it's because carbon fiber is such a thing now, and aluminum is seen as old tech. The black and grey of carbon is in, so everything is color matched to it.

    I didn't mind the black and polished Dura-Ace from a few iterations ago. Still can't afford it though haha.

  9. #9
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    My carbon Synapse has black components, and I like the way it looks. It makes the bright green stand out better, I think. Last fall I picked up an Allez from the late 2000s and it has silver components. Not polished, but still shiny. I think that bike wouldn't look as good with black components. Same goes for my steel Coda. I guess what I'm saying is both have their place in my opinion and look great in the right application. I do agree it would be nice to have the options with modern stuff but I suppose they will only produce what sells.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by craiger_ny View Post
    I have a steel frame that I want to have painted and then build it up modern (shifter/brake levers) but without shiny stuff it's hard to motivate myself to do it.
    what about veloce? seems pretty reasonably priced.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by blackfrancois View Post
    what about veloce? seems pretty reasonably priced.
    Note that Campy has discontinued Veloce in 2018, although you may be able to find a 2017 group. For 2018, they brought back Centaur; it's now 11 speed and also comes in silver

  12. #12
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    Thanks.
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  13. #13
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    As I mentioned in my opening thread, here is Campy's Potenza 11-speed polished-silver groupo, supposedly developed to go head-to-head with Shimano Ultegra. Potenza costs about $800-900 for the groupo. Potenza is nice looking stuff, but like I said, for $$$$ and sanity reasons, I just can't bring myself to add another diff manufactuer groupo & all its maintenance components (chains, cassettes, rings, etc). Already running Shimano and SRAM gruppos is a $$$$ headache between multiple, but adding Campy to that mix? My name is not J.P. Morgan.....

    Anybody miss the polished silver component groups?-campagnolo-potenza-cycloretro-3.jpg

    Anybody miss the polished silver component groups?-campagnolo-potenza-cycloretro-2.jpg

    Anybody miss the polished silver component groups?-campagnolo-potenza-cycloretro-4.jpg

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by BelgianHammer View Post
    As I mentioned in my opening thread, here is Campy's Potenza 11-speed polished-silver groupo, supposedly developed to go head-to-head with Shimano Ultegra. Potenza costs about $800-900 for the groupo. Potenza is nice looking stuff, but like I said, for $$$$ and sanity reasons, I just can't bring myself to add another diff manufactuer groupo & all its maintenance components (chains, cassettes, rings, etc). Already running Shimano and SRAM gruppos is a $$$$ headache between multiple, but adding Campy to that mix? My name is not J.P. Morgan.....
    I have purchased 2 Potenza groups recently. A black group from Merlin for $650 and a silver group from Rave View Cycles for $620. I agree that Campy is too pricey to buy in the US. When I also had SRAM and Shimano bikes in my stable, I found I always had an adjustment period when I switched up bikes. Overall, I like the Campy ergonomics better so I went that direction

  15. #15
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    I prefer silver hubs and spoke but otherwise don't care one way or another. I must admit I could go for a crank that looks like the picture in post #13 though.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by BelgianHammer View Post
    As I mentioned in my opening thread, here is Campy's Potenza 11-speed polished-silver groupo, supposedly developed to go head-to-head with Shimano Ultegra. Potenza costs about $800-900 for the groupo. Potenza is nice looking stuff, but like I said, for $$$$ and sanity reasons, I just can't bring myself to add another diff manufactuer groupo & all its maintenance components (chains, cassettes, rings, etc). Already running Shimano and SRAM gruppos is a $$$$ headache between multiple, but adding Campy to that mix? My name is not J.P. Morgan.....

    Click image for larger version. 

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    This group looks like it's been polished by a 3rd party. I could be wrong(I don't think I am) but I don't think that a Potenza group is going to leave the factory with that high of a finish.
    Too old to ride plastic

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    This group looks like it's been polished by a 3rd party. I could be wrong(I don't think I am) but I don't think that a Potenza group is going to leave the factory with that high of a finish.
    My Potenza group doesn't look like that. The polish and the drilled out levers is not standard

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveG View Post
    My Potenza group doesn't look like that. The polish and the drilled out levers is not standard
    That is the work of a gentleman by the name of Stephen Needles in the UK


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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by DaveG View Post
    My Potenza group doesn't look like that. The polish and the drilled out levers is not standard
    Yeah, I did a little searching and this is the place

    https://www.cycloretro.com/

    Another is Home and here's his Flickr page https://www.flickr.com/photos/54616231@N04/
    Too old to ride plastic

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by velodog View Post
    Yeah, I did a little searching and this is the place

    https://www.cycloretro.com/

    Another is Home and here's his Flickr page https://www.flickr.com/photos/54616231@N04/
    Easiest way to contact him is through the FB page: Steel is Real (SIR)


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  21. #21
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    was tempted to put silver Potenza on my antique steel race bike. Instead I put on silver Veloce parts, which also look very nice. Just the rear mech and levers, because I want to be able to quickly swap back to the original 1989-ish Athena (ie the rest is all vintage still)
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  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by arshak View Post
    Easiest way to contact him is through the FB page: Steel is Real (SIR)


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    Wow, I didn't even know this. Thanks for the info. I had just assumed those pics represented what the Potenza group actually looked like. Wonder if that is something a buyer of the group could do themselves? Using the same polishing compound, working it until it becomes a beautiful luster?

  23. #23
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    polishing the aluminum kind of ruins the part though, and gives it a very inauthentic look imho. These parts come from the factory with a protective anodizing. And Camagnolo's has traditionally been the most refined jewel-like anodized finish, well it was in the 80s and 90s iirc. To take a polishing compound and wheel to it is removing all the protective anodizing, exposing the bare metal to the elements, and making it look very un-campagnolo. Thenceforth the user is going to be obliged to keep up with the polishing and/or using protective films and/or clear coating them, otherwise the oxidation is going to set in fairly quickly.

    but then, maybe you want the custom chromed-everything look, like Harley riders go for

    I prefer the antique patina on my old Campy parts, it is still in mostly clean and pretty condition, like antique jewelry



    Last edited by BCSaltchucker; 03-30-2018 at 12:56 AM.
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  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by BCSaltchucker View Post
    polishing the aluminum kind of ruins the part though, and gives it a very inauthentic look imho. These parts come from the factory with a protective anodizing. And Camagnolo's has traditionally been the most refined jewel-like anodized finish, well it was in the 80s and 90s iirc. To take a polishing compound and wheel to it is removing all the protective anodizing, exposing the bare metal to the elements, and making it look very un-campagnolo. Thenceforth the user is going to be obliged to keep up with the polishing and/or using protective films and/or clear coating them, otherwise the oxidation is going to set in fairly quickly.

    but then, maybe you want the custom chromed-everything look, like Harley riders go for

    I prefer the antique patina on my old Campy parts, it is still in mostly clean and pretty condition, like antique jewelry



    Campy rider here. My vote is silver groupset specific to bike vintage. Older steel bikes like the beautiful steel bike above should have a silver groupset and of course I prefer it to be Campag in silver which I have owned in the past...just prior to the carbon invasion. I don't want a silver groupset on a modern carbon bike, doesn't look right to me...although I did kind of like the Shimano DA crank in silver just previous to the last DA gen crank in black.

    BC, can you post a side view of your bike? Lovely. Looks to be my size as well....60-ish cm center to top. You must be 6' or above. Can't tell saddle to bar drop by the pic but looks to be a nice recreational geometry...French-ish fit.
    Very nice even tho I no longer rider steel.

    Of course Campy kind of restored life in silver groupsets a while back. Early Athena 11s Powershift versus Ultrashift was a popular installation on vintage steel bikes with all silver parts. I prefer modern index shifting to downtube friction shifters even on vintage bikes...and of course ergonomics of broader modern hoods.

  25. #25
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    Fashions change, and chances are silver will be back at some point. Likely after many people tire of the carbon look. Not carbon fiber, but the look of it. But since polishing is more labor intensive, I would say more likely in a coating form of some type.

    Personally, I like silver. Not enough to have my current black components polished, but I prefer it. I think it goes well with any other color a bit better than black. Plus scratches and wear are less visible silver on silver than silver on black.
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