86 wicked project

86wicked

New member
Hi all,
My first Fat City project and I am stoked! Got a 1986 black frame with black fork and yellow head badge decal all in pretty good condition. SN: 86586 or it could be 86686, 18" with ht at 71 and st at 72. Oversize down tube, Suntour rear drop outs, original 2 sets black bottle bracket bolts (I think), Suntour seat post skewer, small plain American flag top st. Fork (I think) is a Tange "mini-crown" original to this frame. Campagnolo cable guides top of BB. I think this is a Wicked that was made prior to introduction of the new line in 1987 (???).

Frame prep done and gathering parts. Concept is that "the frame is the thing" so will leave it as is with original paint and light normal wear. Will be in the general period mid-80s to mid-90s, 8 speed, XT. A little bling with some purple Ringle Holey skewers. Yellow cable housing. Will update. Thanks to all for great educational and mind expanding postings on this website that are so helpful to a "newbie".
 

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Retro Dude

New member
Looks nice, another way to tell if it's a wicked is to measure the fork rake. Wicked's are 1.75" and fat chances are 2"
 

86wicked

New member
Looks nice, another way to tell if it's a wicked is to measure the fork rake. Wicked's are 1.75" and fat chances are 2"

RD, thanks. Measured at 1.75. Repacked BB and cleaned up collars with brass wire brush so bright and shiny. Repacked some gold Mavic 221s also today so ready for Panaracer Smoke and Darts.
 

rick

New member
Wicked?

I would expect a Wicked to have a W in the serial number. I have also not seen a Wicked with the cable guides on top of the BB. Does it have a Wicked decal on either side of the down tube?
Bike looks to be in very good condition, but I would guess that it is a regular Fat Chance? I like the black fork rather than the usual yellow
 

86wicked

New member
Rick, thanks. I was lucky to find this bike in such good condition. Some scuffs and scratches from light normal wear, some chain slap wear. I did my usual light compound, 7 light coats McGuires Mirror Glaze High Tech Yellow, and several Zymol go overs. Used nylon brush on shotgun cleaning rod to clean out seat tube but very little of anything came out. Sprayed in frame saver and rolled frame around. Buffed the BB collars with wire brush etc to brighten up and I filed a couple rough nick spots on them smooth.

Agree the black front fork is nice touch. I like the design which I think is a Tange mini-crown. I will run yellow cable housings to pick up the yellow head badge decal. Only other original decal on the bike was the small plain American flag top seat post. Geometry different in Wickeds.

The old 1980s series serial numbers. seem to be just numbers. So 86 is year of manufacture and other digits are the frame numbers in general I think. Letters seem to come in a bit later. It would be cool to be able to refer to the master log book if it still exists somewhere. A real historical treasure if it does and I hope it can get into a museum some day...Smithsonian?

My main focus is on preservation of the frame as a historical American hand made piece of design and craftsmanship...and on riding the bike. I change around parts on my bikes from time to time when I find something interesting and cool that seems to work. I lived in Boston 79-81 so feel some attachment to Fat City and to New England where I lived 7 years. I will do my best to take care of the frame so the next owner after me can have some vintage fun too!

Frame is in the living room with a growing bunch of parts accumulating under the Christmas Tree. XT, Panaracer, Ringle... Happy Holidays to all!
 
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yo-Nate-y

Global Moderator
Staff member
Great base for a build! I'd probably want to keep everything mid-80s and not venture into the 90s with the parts, but (as always) build the bike you like. Plenty of time to change things up later.
 

86wicked

New member
Thanks yNy. The frame was spaced to 135 so I am doing a little interpretation of its former life and evolution in the 90s. Keeping Shimano XT theme but moving it to 8 speed. But just received a black 1987 Shimano XT headset in oretty nice condition with rubber excellent. Have a black Ritchey-Nitto stem for the wicked black look. The only modern touch is the set of black Paul Neos, although I may put a Touring in the back. Gold Paul Moon hangers to go with gold Mavics. Shimano yellow cables came in and the yellow works fine with the yellow head badge decal. Couldn't resist purple not too hazy Ringle skewers and bottle cage. Silver seat post, handlebars, and crank I am working on. I really hope to get all parts in hand and the build done in time for New Year's Day ride.
 

Wookie

New member
I also have an 86 that may be a Wicked. Mine has a box crown fork. I was assured by the seller it was a Wicked, but I have my doubts. Other than the rake, are there other clues? Thanks!
 

Retro Dude

New member
The head tube angle should be an easy way to differentiate between a Fat and a Wicked (69 and 71 degrees respectively).

I just checked the registry and the W was added to the serial number in '88. The way Fat Chance production ran, it's quite possible that Wicked's were produced at the end of '86, before the official release in '87.
 

86wicked

New member
W, the geometry of the various models seems to have evolved in 85-87 period. Checking some of the online catalogs for those times it seems that HT 68.5 was used in 1985 in some models but then shifts to the 69 for Fat and 71 for Wicked in 86-87. There seem to be changes in seat tube and also top tube dimensions.

In thinking about 1986, it is possible some bikes were built for the 1987 model year. Also, I think it is possible that in 1986 some prototypes for the soon to be introduced Wicked were made. The prototypes could well have had different variations in specs to try to get the ride and handling optimized.

My bike has the Campagnolo cable guides on top of the BB. I have to smile seeing these as I have them on a couple 70s road bikes but in the road bike world cables began to go under the BB in the early 80s. I think Fat City went under the BB in 1987 about.

MY SN is 86586 although the 5 could be a 6 as that numeral is hard to see clearly. I guess that when they were using just numbers they would batch bikes of each model and run the batch. Thus, we would need to look at any original records and logs to spot the model within the production runs for 86. Also there might be notations for prototypes and custom orders.
 

86wicked

New member
Up and running New Year's Day!

Build includes King headset, Titec 118 flat bar, Ibis bar ends, Kooka crank, VP Vice pedals, Paul Neo-retros, XT shifter-brake, XT FD and RD, Ringle seat post QR and skewers and bottle cage, Ritchey Force stem and seat post, San Marco seat, Mavic 221s gold.
 

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yo-Nate-y

Global Moderator
Staff member
More pics would be great. How's the ride?

Might be the angle, but it looks like your bar ends are reversed/on the wrong sides.
 

86wicked

New member
Yes flipped, fiddling with everything angles, height, reach, hand positions, all adjustments and combinations I can think of. Newbie to mountain bikes. My road and cross bikes won't take me into some places I want to go to fish, camp, and photograph.

Out last four days for an hour or two ride on hardpack, gravel, dirt, pine needles, grass-pasture and some mud. Will get more adventurous as I get it adjusted and the feel down. Tracks well, stable through heavy mud, nimble front end but not twitchy. Longish wheel base so I think it will be good for light bikepacking. I set it up with narrow bars and longish stem which works for me. The Titec 118 has a little flex which I like as it takes the edge off as does the steel frame generally. I can see already that it will be a fun companion.

Thanks for your interest in more pix and for encouragement. Will take some over next few days.
 
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