A great find at l'Eroica in October was a stack of old cycling publications! Download the first offering here. It's Lo Sport Illustrato from June 15, 1950, and it covers hugo Koblet's Giro victory. A must for fans of la Pédaleur de Charme
Monday, December 27, 2010
Sunday, December 26, 2010
The long weekend has been good to get out some of those lingering projects. I had this idea for a while now, so I got out my meager Illustrator skills and traced an old design to make this t-shirt. The idea would be to find someone to print some up on a high-quality shirt and take to l'Eroica for a VERY limited run for friends. Any interest?
"It was good enough for Fausto/Gino, so it's good enough for me" and on the back "All I need is two levers and four gears" ... not literally, but that's my best English interpretation at least.
So my old bike collecting bug has gotten a little out of control in just one year's time. However, when I met Paolo (of Biciclette e Decadence fame) and found out about a friend of his who might consider selling what is my Holy Grail bike, I couldn't pass up. The Gloria Garibaldina is considered by many to be the ultimate Italian vintage bike to own. There were quite a few made, as Gloria was a goliath company until about 1960, but few survived in good, original condition (not that this one is totally original, far from it).
Gloria developed a way to pump out these fine frames in a large number for the time. One way of doing so was to stamp the head tube and distinct flower-shaped 'lugs' from a sheet, roll it and then weld the seam. If you pull the fork out and look inside, you'll see that the flower 'lugs' are in fact recessed from the stamping process! That means that the flower lugs this bike is famous for are not even really lugs! Add to it that many of the components were branded with "Gloria", the unique rear dropouts, and the nickel-plated 'lugs' and you end up with a beautiful representation of the highest bicycle technology of the day.
I'm only going to post this one photo for now, as I don't want anyone else to find it and outbid me! I hope to pick it up on the way home from Puglia. It's safe to say that my collecting is officially over because to me, it doesn't get much better than this!
PS - an update on Mrs. Masini's Gloria... the Maasland told me last night that the grips are made of ox horn!
Saturday, December 25, 2010
Mrs. Masini commissioned these two paintings of our "children" for me for Christmas. They're spectacular!
Painted by our (also ex-pat) good friend Rachel, these Elizabethan-style portraits are always what I wanted to capture these two spoiled dogs. Now, they can live on forever in their finest garb! With a big heart and a shared passion for dogs, Rachel donates part of the proceeds to animal charities. Ours went to SPCA International's Operation Baghdad Pups project, which gets soldiers' dogs out of Iraq and Afghanistan.
Merry Christmas to all, first off! You may notice some ongoing changes to the layout of the blog - I'm done with Disqus. It basically led to zero comments this year, so it's back to Google's stock comment system. I'll be tweaking over the next few days... but let's talk Christmas!
We finally got some snow to stick here in Basel yesterday. It's been coming down in tiny little flakes for the past day and a half, so it's a white one here.
I've been holding out on posting this Gloria ladie's city bike until after I showed it to the Mrs. on Christmas day. It was promised to be done by my restorer, but he's Italian... sooo. Anyway, I can't wait to see it. We'll be in the area on Monday on our way to Puglia for New Year's. Note the internal rod brakes... very cool.
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
I just picked up this VERY limited (in fact, you see all of it in the photo) run of Cicli Masini frame sticker kits. Production update of the 1950 Paris-Roubaix equipped frame: it's back from chrome, along with some of the parts. My post-Christmas trip to Puglia will include stops to Ciöcc to drop off the stickers, Enzo's to get the P-R shifter and some brakes, Ermes' to get the P-R repro axle, and then hopefully again to Ciöcc to pick up the painted/finished frame!
Yes, Mrs. Masini is a patient person!