In a message dated 2/6/04 10:05:57 AM Pacific Standard Time,
> I'm collecting parts for my 1960 Bianchi Specialissima project. If I walked
> into a bike shop in 1960 and bought this bike, what brake set would it have
> come with.
> Did Universal 61 brakes really come out in the year 1961, or would this bike
> have come with Universal Extras, I know this is an anal question, I'm trying
> for a consensus.
Universal has a pretty long history of having their parts marked by patent
dates that are also the model dates. There's a Model '39, '51, '61, '68, '77 and
probably others. If they were like Campagnolo, pre-production parts were
available in the Peloton while "patent pending".
Although I'm pretty sure your Specialissima is a 1960, and should have
originally come with Model '51 sidepulls, if you want to put Model 61s on there,
it's close enough that it would certainly be a period upgrade. Even though Fausto
used them, the Mod. 51 sidepulls aren't very good now. At a time when that's
all there was and nobody else had better brakes? It didn't matter as much.