1974 Legnano Gran Premio, Part 3

Now it’s time for some wheels! I love the Campagnolo Tipo high flange hubs that are original to this bike but I am not a fan the tubular rims that were on it. For practicality and a greater variety in tire choices I decided to go with clinchers. I unlaced the original Fiamme tubulars and started shopping for some rims. It proved to be harder than I thought to find a pair that I liked!

I eventually came up with an unlabeled set of clinchers that were in pretty good shape. They are from the early 70’s and look a little like Mavic G40’s but they could be made by Araya. My research shows these bikes came equipped with tubulars, so any clincher I put on will not be typical of the original spec, but they are period correct so that is what I will use for this rider. In this case function trumps tradition!

Actually building the wheels takes only a couple of hours after all of the parts are cleaned and ready to go. To re-use the original spokes I had to cut them to the proper length for these rims and re-thread them. Also, when selecting the spokes for the inner or outer position on the hub flange I had to examine the angle of the bend at the head of the spoke to make sure that those spokes which were previously used on the outside of the flange were re-used in that same position on these wheels. Outside spokes have more bend at the head than inside spokes. Changing their installed position on the hub could weaken the spoke and cause a failure. Re-using the original spokes should be no problem when you pay attention to the details.

These 36 spoke wheels will be strong and true and should serve this bike and rider well for many years to come. I am anxious to get them mounted and to be a little closer to the much anticipated test ride! It does not pay to rush however so I will take my time and get the best result I can on the completed bike.

previous posts on this build:

1974 Legnano Gran Premio, Part 1

1974 Legnano Gran Premio, Part 2