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1974 Raleigh Professional ~ Blue Mink/Silver         Featured Bike! on 10/7/2010

Bike tags: Road bike | 1974 | 61cm | Brooks Team Pro | campagnolo | more tags >>
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I credit this '74 Raleigh Professional, Carlton/Raleigh's nod to Italian design, for
really getting me back into cycling daily. The Victor Fastback seat cluster DL-180
Mk IV is actually a take-off of the Carlton Giro d'Italia, which came out in 1965.
While there are some refinements in Raleigh's version, it's very much in
the same vein with the addition of the Campag sidepulls vs the centers on the Carlton.
The rear triangle is tighter and the BB higher on the Raleigh DL-180.

In my opinion, this Blue Mink Raleigh Pro is one of the most beautiful paint schemes
with the ST panels backing the matching silver head tube. The silver/blue mix is a perfect
set-off for the chrome on the rear triangle and fork arms. Surprisingly, the
lug work is rather impressive with the thinned long points looking more refined; my
version is evidence that the boys in Worksop must have had an extremely good day (I've
seen some Pros with less than stellar details). The Victor fastback seat cluster and
Cinelli crown are highlights with both probably contributing to extra stiffness, the
rear triangle a relatively stiff affair. The fork on the Pro is raked far more than
its Italian brethren, a throw-back to days of old.

You sometimes read negatives about Raleigh Pros being harsh; personally, I don't find this
the case, although it's more rigid along with the Cinelli fork crown, leading to potential
transmission of road irregularities. Geometry-wise, it's no Raleigh International,
possibly one of the most relaxed frames around, decidedly biased towards the touring vein.
The Pro is responsive without being twitchy at all and gets the power to the pavement due
to the relatively stiff rear triangle. Simply put, it's a joy to ride and it gets many
compliments every time out. Once you get a handle on the bike's fall-in properties,
it's not an issue in corners, though it does handle differently then my Italian rides.
The Raleigh Pro of this era came over to the USA with an uber high bottom bracket to
help avoid pedal strike in criterium racing.

In my opinion, Campagnolo Nuovo Record is form/function/beauty combined, with it taking a
more industrial beauty over the lighter Super Record that was soon to follow. I never tire
of looking at this bike whether on wall or road.

The period correct Brooks Team Pro, which is a long distance champion, fitting like a glove
(even if a heavy as hell glove), is revolved with a Selle San Marco Concor, still one of my
favorite Italian saddles. A Unicanitor #1 sees some use as well. The near bulletproof and
true Mavic Open 4 CD rims anodizing have seen better days due to pad wear, but these wheels
are still going strong and the Michelin Pro2 Race are an excellent match. The original
Open 4 CD might just be my favorite clincher despite the pad wear. This rim can be laced into
quite a rigid and strong option and I prefer them to later Open Pros.

Lately, this bike shares weekly rotation with my '83 De Rosa Professional, '84 Ciocc,
'83 Colnago Super, and '72 Raleigh Pro Track. Waiting in the wings next will be the
'73 Pogliaghi Italcorse, and 01 Cinelli SC.



Frame & Tubing
'74 Raleigh Professional Mk IV DL-180 ~ 24.5/61cm C-T ~ Reynolds 531
Victor Fastback seatcluster ~ Spearpoint Latin Line Lugs

Fork and Headset
Reynolds 531 w/ Integral Sloping Crown - Campagnolo ends ~ Campagnolo Nuovo Record Headset

Handlebars and Stem
Cinelli Giro D' Italia 64-42 ~ Cinelli 1A 140mm ~ Ambrosio Bike Ribbon

Campagnolo Nuovo Record Calipers w/Pads & Nuovo Record Levers ~ Campagnolo Hoods

Front Derailleur
Campagnolo Nuovo Record

Rear Derailleur
Campagnolo Nuovo Record ~ Pat 72

Campagnolo Super Record DT

Regina Extra 7 (12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18)

Crankset and Bottom bracket
177.5 Campagnolo Record Strada 53/42 & Campagnolo Nuovo Record BB

Pedals and Chain
Campagnolo Superleggeri w/Campagnolo Alloy Clips & Alfredo Binda Straps / Sedis

Saddle and Seat Post
Brooks Team Professional & San Marco Concor Supercorsa / Campagnolo Nuovo Record Post - 27.2

Front wheel
Mavic Open 4 CD (36) ~ O.M.A.S. Hub ~ Michelin Pro 2 Race

Rear wheel
Mavic Open 4 CD (36) ~ Mavic 550 RD Hub ~ Michelin Pro 2 Race


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People who friended this bike Hyde, satapana, Cool Steel, latron, Vertigo, GEORGEPALMA, phoenix, Tony Mascarpone, MisterAlbatross, Zephyrus, paramount, wonderkid, Chainwheel, Badjir, trackmarks, amnomad, cyclebob13, nsop, mr.2ter, Kevin, ragnar.jensen, bkbldr, phillyc71, yobustit, Valentijn, stevieg, Klimabean, bionnaki, hollowgram5, arkiemark, sauerkraut, sibkis, tazmeraz, Lord_Athlon, mayksense,, mastronaut, shibbybeatzz, BLUEMEANIE, Zalan, wedger979, nexus6, jguerry, electricgeorge, eaglerock, parkerg, cannonhugodale, OZYMANDIAzzz, MADMAN™, dannyboy10, ferrjerr, anthony f, the fumingator, glider, Kaleo, mechanicmatt, Haegan, Velogarden, horsus prudentus, SlyRed, Splined, flyingrobots, Vagrant, Saffs, norskagent, spoynter, checkthree, campystamp, knapprobert, bdawe, ColumbusSLX, tomthetank, ayyyyy, axe_somebody, GGB, Jon-one, lwolfson, olino, per.k, mad dog, BlueDevil, parkman14, dan_young, Reynolds753, vqstaphbeard

god, dat stem.

gets me evretim. This bike is what I play show-and-tell with to my friends.

Dating my Raleigh Professional frame

I "scored" a Raleigh Professional frame and fork this past summer. I've been trying to date it ever since so I can start searching for the proper parts for the complete (and accurate) restore. The serial number _W___02384 is unreadable. I'm not even certain that a letter precedes the W. Anyhow, I'm becoming more convinced every day that this is a 1974 for all sorts of reasons. My question to you concerns the chainstays. On my frame, only the outside of the right chainstay is dimpled. Does that match the characteristics of a 1974 Professional???



If between '74 and '80, there shouldn't be anything in front of your W. There should be another letter AFTER the W, however. The most important will be the THIRD character which will establish the YEAR it was made ie it will be the last digit of the year(deducing decade is not hard). Does your Professional have the Victor Fastback seatcluster? How about the Cinelli style sloping fork crown? If not, you surely dont have a 74 (dont believe the 74 has any dimple on outside of chainstay, either). More info is needed.


this bike is so fine. A flagship for Velospace, one of the best.

How much would is sale for?

I have the exact same bicycle. It was my grandfathers and he rode it into his 80's. The bike doesn't fit me and I'd like someone to have it and get use out of it. How much would the bike go for if I tried to sell it. I don't want to give it away, and want a fair price for it. It is in really good condition, always been kept in a garage or storage shed.

Bottom Bracket

I just got a frame circa 1974, same model as yours however on mine the housing for the bottom bracket has a cutout in it. It's two R's. so my question is if Raleigh used to do this and if so how would I go about installing a bottom bracket in it that won't get dirty and wet from riding? Did you have this problem?

CC cutout ~ Use Campagnolo NR w/Dust Guard

Congratulations on a fine frame. Indeed, it does have cutouts, usually shaped like CC (Carlton Cycles), exactly as shown in the linked photo below. I would recommend getting a British Campagnolo NR BB, a great BB and what it came with at the time. Find a sample with the Dust Guard as seen in the photo. The spindle will have 68-SS-120 on it and if going for pre-78 Campy Crank arms, you'll want a 113mm length. Post '78 brought 114.5 and the spindle usually said 68SS. Match the arms with BB (pre-78 or post-78).

Photo: 74 Raleigh Professional Bottom Bracket w/Campy NR 68-SS-120 at 113mm

If wanting to go modern, the Phil Wood BB is another excellent choice as well, with no issues and great reliability.

Lovely.. but I like the DT

Lovely.. but I like the DT shifter version better.

You mean...

So do I. I like the contrast in shot #1 but my favorite setup by far is the original DT shifters as it's cleaner. That's actually the way its been set up for a quite a while, just as seen in shot #2 & 3. I still ride this bike weekly although something new has come in that I'm really looking forward to. Yep, another Italian beast that will be my oldest bike yet.


Professional MK IV

My God is your machine clean!
I have the same, bought used in summer of '75. Still rides like a dream and passes more then a few carbon machines. But after 34 years paint could use a refresh. All Campy components still work as new! I've updated to Velocity deep v's because of my weight and the shit roads we have round here.
White rims with white bar tape, like yours, and white cables and a white Selle San Marco saddle. Even with a bit of a scratched up frame she still turns heads,but yours!!!! like new. How long have you had it?
It's the best Italian bike ever to come out of Great Briton and a joy to drive. Always turbine smooth ,agile, quiet and surprisingly comfortable.
Great to see one in mint shape, makes me want to go for a ride right now.

Be well

Yes, indeed.

I feel the same way although some of the vintage freaks that live and breathe Italian sort of turn their nose up at these Worksop Raleighs. Thing is, this bike can really hold it's own and I ride it back to back with my De Rosa, losing very little, though it handles a bit differently, with a different rate of fall-in when leaning into the turn. The rear triangle is certainly tighter than all the other Raleighs for sure, with the Team Pro the only other real handler. While my De Rosa might feel a touch more nimble, some of it due to size difference, the Raleigh Pro does not lose much if you are aware of its traits. I get compliments on this every time out - the paint scheme just does something in person...

False eBay Auction featuring my Raleigh Pro

Someone wrote to let me know my '74 Raleigh Professional was being featured in an eBay auction
with the lead photo of me standing behind the beast along with the word for word description of the
parts. This bike is NOT FOR SALE and this info was lifted from here without my consent, the seller
making it seem as if it were his bike. Although I notified eBay twice, this auction has been featured
several times, with duplicated notes and word for word description.

My first big boy bike

Its funny, my Raleigh bikes are all older than me, but my first BMX bike was an all chrome (probably American made) Raleigh, even though all I wanted was my parents to spring for a GT or Dyno or anything else that was on the front cover of that months BMX magazine. Mine was lighter than any of my friend's "cool" bikes and none of them knew my parents bought it at Discount Harry's for probably half what their parents spent. Wonder if that has anything to do with my obsession with vintage Raleigh's... Sugary_Otis


Raleigh's colors were all over the map. Some were the most beautiful bikes -EVER. This is one. I love the how the front fork had just changed from the former years flat crown. Like you said, this bike seems more Italian that it's Brit brothers. I have a 71 International in Champagne color (insanely beautiful as well) that's way too small for me, its a 51cm. That's the only reason I've stalled on completing it. I'll probably have to just sell it once its done, or maybe I'll only date girls that fit it, so I can justify keeping the bike around. People have tried to convince me to just convert it to a singlespeed since I'm only missing the cranks, wheels and rear derailleur. I say they're nuts, it deserves to be restored in its full glory. I can only hope it comes out this nice. I just finished a period correct Campy/Cinelli rebuild of 75 Raleigh Pro Track and put it up. Love it.



Nice Raleigh

So clean you could lick it!


I was a 14 year old junior racer in 1974 riding a Motobecane in Germany. I came out of a bike store and saw a carbon copy (except for the rims) of your Raleigh Professional just sitting there, brand new at the time. Like your comment from February I was transfixed, just as I am now....beautiful!

Great Comment

Love your comment, especially considering we were almost the exact same age, at the exact same time, an ocean apart, when we first saw this bike. I wasnt racing at the time (except the neighborhood fiends), just an admirer of beautiful machines, and I remember seeing the Professional and thinking about the same thing. It might as well been priced out of the Universe, and practically was to me at the time. It took me quite a few years before I found one with the same karma & elan. There is something magical about this combination of silver, blue, and chrome. IT would have been even more magical if I was OVER THERE looking at the beast!


Like mine, but infinitely nicer. haha. Very cool.

Ridiculously hot.

Ridiculously hot.

A religiously attractive bike

This is so nice. I agree the older Campag set the norm for components and still work great.


North Carolina!

Hey man, don't know you but your in North Carolina, so...

New forum site for local events, tech talk, FS/WTB and other stuff.

Sign up and have a look around, and hopefully it will grow quickly. Just hosted it yesterday.

Aston Martin?

Reminds me of a euro sports car from the 70's. Scared me at first but i reallly like the cables coming out of the bar tape.


Thanks for the comment... You know, I dont even think the photos do this bike justice, even. Been storing the beast in my living room and sometimes I find myself just staring at it as if transfixed. Yeah, the Campy barcon shifters are an interesting touch that I grew to like much more with use; they actually work quite nicely. The metal jacket cable exiting the tape is something you even like or not. I happen to like it now as well. The whole bike really DOES remind one of the fine cars of old. I had a blue BMW Bavaria 3.0 that it reminds me of... That car started rusting like a fiend - this thing is immaculate.

That is one BIG, beautiful

That is one BIG, beautiful machine. I remember when I first saw one of these when I was a kid back in the seventies. I always loved the color, subtle and elegant especially with the silver. And the fastback were/are also pleasing. Back then we were all ogling over Italian machinery like Masi's and Colnago's like the kind Merckx was killing everyone on, so it woulda been hard to be founding riding one. But your bike Sir, seems emaculate! Bravo. I know this is an old thread but hey... it still rocks!

First Beauty, now the Beast

I bought the same bike yesterday at a car boot sale for less than ten dollars - I only wanted the Shimano/Cinelli parts.

It's in bad condition due to rust, but all surface and no dents or other damage, and at some time has been re-sprayed and badged as a Mercian.

Haven't got the time or the skill to renovate it but am happy to give the frame/forks to anyone who has for the cost of postage (I'm in UK).

I just realised I can't upload photos because the site only accepts full bikes, but the frame can be seen here:

Pro Indeed

Looks to be a Victor Fastback Seatcluster Pro, indeed. Pretty amusing that someone was attempting to pass that off as a Mercian. That frame really does deserve someone's attention and it's a very kind offer to donate to the cause for shipping only.

1 ~ Raleigh Pro badged as Mercian
2 ~ Raleigh Pro badged as Mercian

Hope someone takes you up on it.

A sad story

oldman wolfson

I was the owner of a Raleigh Pro from 1978(?) to 1991. The frame failed at the BB. Might have been the sweat from many hours on the rollers. Anyway, I carried the thing with me when I moved out to Minnesota. I worked near a Raleigh dealer, Now Sports, and when I casually mentioned to them what I had, the owner said bring it in and he would show it to the Raleigh rep. (It was supposed to have a lifetime warranty) I did so but failed to get a receipt because I thought I would pick it up in a day or two. Many weeks went by and when I finally went back, Now Sports was GONE. Moved, closed up etc. All the "old stuff" was thrown out. The bike was an unimpressive mess, but as you describe, all Campy Nuevo Record, beautiful lugs, and so on. I miss it to this day. Sob. I might be lookin' to buy one to hang on the wall. Who knows.

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