Re: [CR]Italian 3V - Alberto or Faliero (IP Merkin)

(Example: Racing:Jean Robic)

Date: Wed, 09 Mar 2005 10:24:54 -0800
From: "Jim Allen" <>
Subject: Re: [CR]Italian 3V - Alberto or Faliero (IP Merkin)
References: <>
In-Reply-To: <>

About the changeover from Italian to American production of 3v's.

Keep in mind that I was the painter, and am relaying what I was given to

understand at the time.

We had trouble from the beginning getting reliable supply from Alberto. The paint, decal, and chrome was not up to our standards and Alberto would not even talk about making good on the problems. Alberto priced the frames the same as a walk in customer at the Vigorelli. Tough to have much of a profit margin and cover the blemished

finish work.

We latter heard that Alberto was a partner in a painting facility which would appear to be the reason he was unwilling to ship us bare frames.

Alberto was clearly not happy that Faliero sold the rights to Roland Sahm .

Jim Allen the CycleSmiths wrote:
>Every Italian 3V I've seen had Alberto's signature, with one exception.
   I've got a Masi catalog from Ten Speed Drive Imports, and the 3V looks t o be an earlier Alberto model (fork crown, seat stay, lettering, but befo re he went to internal top tube routing), but the "Masi" signature on the
   side of the fork blade looks to be the last name cut out from a Faliero Masi signature decal. There was no signature on the top tube, however; i t must have been on the non-drive side (as was done in the Torelli days).
    I got the impression that they must have just started inporting them...
   the 3V geometry is missing from their chart.
>I heard an interesting story (subject, of course, to rebuttals from othe r list members) from a fellow who knew the Masi family (and who used to b ring in a few frames from the Vigorelli once in a while). He said that a t first, Masi USA (or whatever it was called back then) imported Alberto' s bikes and sold them in the US. At some point, however, they figured ou t that they could make 'em themselves, so they got lugs cast and just lef t Alberto out in the cold. It's an interesting story, even if it's not a ccurate. I owned an early 90s American 3V, and it's darned easy to tell one apart from one of Alberto's bikes. It had different fork crowns, sea t stay caps, lug stamping, bottom bracket shell and serial number arrange ment. It also had different tubing. Alberto used Excell tubing, and the US bikes used various tubing (True Temper, Reynolds, and Columbus), depen ding, I suppose, on whether the frame was made in the US or by Mondonico.
>IP Merkin
>Providence, RI