Re: [CR]Yellow Cinelli

(Example: Component Manufacturers:Chater-Lea)

Date: Sat, 22 Feb 2003 18:50:32 -0800
Subject: Re: [CR]Yellow Cinelli
From: "Bill Bryant" <bill_bryant@prodigy.net>
To: <classicrendezvous@bikelist.org>
In-Reply-To: <00f101c2db43$fb0cb140$8ad0f7a5@pavilion>


I have another Cino Cinelli story by way of Spence Wolf at Cupertino Bike Shop.

For a time during the '50s-60s Spence was the major importer of Cinellis on the West Coast. He said he enjoyed their business relationship overall, and especially compared to most other European firms which were often more stressful (ie, late delivery). At any rate, all the frame orders and business communication were via letters, which presumably Signora Cinelli translated for her husband. There were often nice pleasant personal messages from Cino that she would pencil in the business letters' margins. He showed me some of these-- he'd carefully saved them all.

One time, some years into their business relationship, a large crate of new bikes arrived at CBS, and inside was a another carefully packed crate too small to be a frame. On the outside it said, "For you, Spence, keep up the good work" or words to that effect. Curious, he opened it up and inside was a brand-new, state of the art Campagnolo tool case, the full-sized one. It included English and French cutters, obviously not something needed on Cinellis. Spence was both stunned and delighted and the shop's Var tools were instantly reduced to secondary status. When I came on board many years after that, both he and Lillian were sure to let me know that Campagnolo tool case represented much more than "just" tools to Spence, and I'd better treat them as such. ;-)

Those same tools, having prepared countless thousands of frames, are still in use long after the men are, alas, gone. I hope the new users always remember how valuable they truly are.

Bill Bryant Santa Cruz, CA

on 2/23/03 6:00 AM, henox at henox@icycle.net wrote:
> Angel asked:
>
> "By the way, what do we know about the Cinelli family?"
>
> What do you really want to know?
>
> I can tell you that the Cinelli family was always extremely welcoming to me
> the many times
> I visited and was exceptionally helpful to me when I lived in Italy.
>
> Signora Cinelli spoke German, French, English, and other languages fluently.
> I think she was responsible for the firm position of
> Cinelli in the German and other bike markets. Signora Cinelli had the
> business
> sense while Cino had the ideas, the credibility, and the charisma.

>

> Hugh Enox

> La Honda