October 25th 2014
I remember being in a central London bike shop some time around 1996/97. I was queueing (check that out, five vowels in a row) to pay for a silver ControlTech seat post. The guy in front of me was a smug overpaid city-boy type – and a right arsehole. He was also a Cannondale owner, and was guffawing loudly and making disparaging comments about Marins. And that one turd put me off a brand for almost two decades.
Years pass by and one Saturday morning I see this old Dale online. It looks to be early 90s so I text the seller, who tells me he’ll be home all afternoon and I’m free to stop by whenever I like. A few hours later, I own my first Cannondale. Originally bought from Centennial Park Cycles in Randwick, after 24 years this Dale is almost back where it started.
My first thought was it’s a 1989 SM2000 – I mean, it’s obvious from the colour scheme, right? After a little more investigating, I find it’s actually a 1990 SM1000. An easy mistake to make.
With the exception of the front wheel and tyres, this old bike is complete. The leather Cannondale Competition saddle, the Easton made Cannondale handle bar (which is fitted the wrong way around), the Shimano Deore DX drivetrain, and the DX pedals are all original.
And the Ritchey fork, which I thought was a later addition, turns out to be original equipment. Shows you how much I know.
The skinny Hutchinson tyres are coming off and will be replaced with a pair of new old stock Ritcheys. And the search begins for the correct front wheel.