There’s a couple of Italian frame builders I get excited about, but the work of Giovanni Pelizzoli holds a special place in my heart (and club, spade and so on). When Simon Rich sent me these images of his Ciöcc Strada, it really skipped a beat. The crimped tubes are a mystery whose true source may only be known to those in the factory where these frames were created.
A bad report from anyone who has owned or ridden any of the frames Giovanni built is rare, whether it was a Conti, Concorde, Ciöcc or Paganini. I can personally attest to their vibrant ride quality, as I have the pleasure of being the latest guardian of a Conti Astore road frame, which is built with a similar set of crimped tubes.
Simon and I walked the same frustrating path trying to glean more information from the usual forums and blogs about these tubes. Fashionable during the late 80s and early 90s, perhaps as a marketing reaction to the custom drawn, star-shaped tubes used on Colnago’s Master, they were professed to increase strength and lateral rigidity — as much as multicolored fade paint schemes increased speed.
Simon’s Ciöcc is a marvelous example in original condition, built with an array of parts pantographed with the brand, and Campagnolo Record components. He tells us, “The frame was an eBay find from Poland. Knowing that Giovanni Pelizzoli made frames for the Polish cycling team I had my fingers crossed that it was one of them.”
“Nothing was spared on the frame. Hidden cable routes, pump mounts… but the best is the pleated tubes (the top, down and seat tubes are all pleated). I did some research on the tubes and everyone points the finger at everyone else… who made these tubes? Columbus, Dedacciai or the ‘other’, relatively unknown tube maker, Oria?”
“The bike came with the Columbus Cromor sticker on there and I haven’t bothered to take it off but I now know a bit about the bike thanks to Pelizzoli.” My Astore had a Dedacciai sticker on the seat tube, which deepens the mystery further. There is evidence of the tubes being used on frames by other builders so they weren’t specific to Pelizzoli. Maybe another The Spoken reader has another hint?
Alessandro Caccia at Pelizzoli offers this: “Giovanni is honored seeing someone collect his old brand frames Ciöcc. The frame coming from the end of 80s — it’s not easy to say the right year but should be around ’86 to ’89, from the industrial production when Giovanni sold the brand to Cicli Conti (in Fara Gera d’Adda). The tubing is not Columbus Cromor but Oria with special twisted shape.”
Regardless of the origin of the tubes, or their effectiveness, they add to the romance of owning, and riding, one of these frames. Special thanks to Simon Rich for the photos and extra information.