If the Colnagos and Pinarellos are comparable to Ferraris then I would say my Simoncini is my little Maserati. Once a true bike geek sees her he can’t help but stop and check it out. It’s like having a vintage car that noon ever sees unless you take it out for a Sunday drive.
She was my first er maybe second, true love. Through hours spent together, we created a bond that is only described as soul-blending harmony. I fondly remember my first rides and races where I knew little about the sport of cycling but she was always a comforting companion letting me know that if we were together on the road things would work out. She rode smooth, fast and flawlessly and that is why to this day I have a place in my heart for her as if she was a person in my life.
she was always a comforting companion letting me know that if we were together on the road things would work out.
The Simoncini was hand-built back in the 80’s in a small family company based in Tuscany. I am not even sure the company exists anymore and Simoncinis are a bit on the rare side. I have read that the builder was subcontracted by Colnago to build some of their bikes.
I picked this bike up back in 1985 and stumbled upon it at a bike shoppe back in the “D”. I asked if they had Italian frame sets knowing I could not really afford one but the owner pulled this one down and offered to build it up with some Campy parts. At the time even the price was reasonable compared to the other Italian classics I had spent a fair share of my time ogling.
At that time Columbus SLX tubing was one of the top options in frame materials. It was built up with entry-level Campagnolo Triomphe gruppo, which still shifts perfectly, a Mavic MA-40 wheel-set paired to Campy hubs, Campy seat post a Selle Italia Turbo Saddle and black anodized Fiamme Bars and stem. Some older parts have updated for comfort or ergonomics but the bike is in flux as it tends to get updated while I dress her with different combinations. Here it is in what I call the Rastafarian motif. This was quickly decidedly un-Italian and reversed to an old school black bar tape and tires. However, she was in a rather sassy and hot-tempered Italian mood that day and this is how she chose to be seen.
The Columus SLX frame on this bike is what I consider to be a classic beauty. Seat and chain stays are fully chromed up to the top of the seat post binder bolt. The fork is also fully chromed. the paint is a metallic green with yellow decals that sets the bike off flawlessly. the bike rides magnificently as steel should. quick, nimble and stiff without being uncomfortable. The bike has been babied and as you can tell she is in extremely prime condition even though she is 30 years young. She does have a few flaws including a frozen stem which I cannot bring myself to cut until I find a similar replacement. But for now she sits and waits only for the fairest of days when the sun is shining so every metallic flake and every sexy inch of her chrome little self can gleam under the sunlight just like the day she came out of that small custom factory somewhere on a Tuscan hillside.