How to identify a Colnago Decor Bicycle

Colnago Superissimo Decor (1996 Catalog)
Colnago Superissimo Decor (1996 Catalog)

According to my research, Colnago never released a model called the ‘Decor’, but they did use the term ‘Decor’ (or Art Decor) to describe an elaborate style of paint work that was applied to the frame. Some year models featured a Decor paint job as standard and sometimes it could be ordered as an option.

If you have a Colnago steel bike and you are not sure what model it is, please refer to my page how to identify a Colnago vintage bike.

Brief History of Colnago Paint Schemes

Based on the various Colnago catalogs I have looked through, their paint work evolved as follows;

  • 1960’s to the early 1980’s. Colnago offered a pretty basic single colour paint job and fitted decals in contrasting colors.
  • Mid 1980’s. Colnago started advertising multi-coloured frames and the ‘Retinati Moda’ (grid style) paint options.
  • Early 1990’s. Colnago started advertising bikes with a ‘Decor’ style paint option.
  • Early 2000’s. Colnago offered a multitude of detailed paint jobs (that look like ‘Decor’, but had different paint codes).

Whilst the style of Decor paint continually evolves, it has been an paint option for many Colnago models since the early 1990’s up to and including their modern C64 frame (2021).

Popular Art Decor Theme

One of the more recognisable Art Decor themes (shown below) features a top-down view of the back of a cyclist on the top tube. In early catalogs, the paint code for Art Decor was prefixed with ‘AD’, however this appears to have changed over the years.

Colnago C40 Art Decor (1997 Catalog)
Colnago C40 Art Decor (1997 Catalog)

Other Samples of Art Decor paint over the years.

Colnago Master Decor (1992 Catalog)
Colnago Master Decor (1992 Catalog)
Colnago Master Olympic Art Decor (1994 Catalog)
Colnago Master Olympic Art Decor (1994 Catalog)
Colnago C40 Art Decor (1996 Catalog)
Colnago C40 Art Decor (1996 Catalog)
Colnago C35 Decor (1996 Catalog)
Colnago C35 Decor (1996 Catalog)
Colnago C64 Art Decor (2021)
Colnago C64 Art Decor (2021)

The Colnago C64 is Colnago’s modern lugged carbon road bike and still offered in Art Decor paint finishes.

Paint work that looks like Art Decor (but is not)

The following 2001 catalog page features a variety of Colnago Dream Plus frames which feature a detailed paint job that may look like Decor paint work, but this is an ‘LX’ paint code. You can however on the catalog page that this frame was also available for order in 4 different Art Decor paint jobs (prefixed ‘AD’). Unfortunately I don’t have pictures of the Decor paint work.

Colnago Dream Plus (not Art Decor) (2001 Catalog)
Colnago Dream Plus (not Art Decor) (2001 Catalog)

Whilst there is a myriad of Decor paint schemes over the years, hopefully this article has provided a little more clarity on Colnago Decor paint.

Disclaimer!

Please remember that this information is only to be used as a guide.
I consider myself an enthusiast, not an expert. The information I have presented in this article is based on my many hours of online research.

In addition, there will always be frames that don’t quite match the characteristics of a particular model as they could have been a custom build, prototype etc. Note: forks can also be swapped between different frames.

About Me.

I have been riding and working on my own bikes for many years now. I wanted to share my experiences, knowledge and research with others. My aim is to inspire people to get involved in all aspects of this amazing sport. Cheers.

Comments.

I welcome reader feedback in the comments section. Should you wish to suggest an amendment, please include a note advising the source of your information so that myself and other readers can ascertain the accuracy of your information. Note: Trolling or argumentative comments will be removed as they are counter-productive.

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

twelve + 20 =