I have just received a reply from Bob Hovey in which he indicates that the Ken Denny listing appears to be the same bike shown in the registry as belonging to Noel Smith and suggests that the characterization of the bike as a "reproduction" was made out of caution for a provenance that was not sufficiently substantiated. Apparently, this same bike has been sold on eBay before. I would like to share Bob's response with the list verbatim, but I will ask his consent before doing so.
Kerrigan Bennett Pleasant Hill, CA USA
I don't have any experience with Ken Denny, but I have to say that I noticed
the eBay listing in question and I noticed that the bike looked very likely
to be the same bike shown in Bob Hovey's Masi Italy Registry as an
acknowledged "reproduction" owned by a Noel Smith:
The bb stamp, "M59.5" seems to be the same on both bikes. When I noticed that, I emailed Bob to ask him any other details he might have regarding the Noel Smith listing. I haven't heard anything back from him yet.
Obviously, any 1972 Masi in this condition is a pretty interesting bike; but if the provenance is misrepresented, then I think one would be correct to take offense. I would assume that it is, at least, a genuine, circa 1972, Masi; but I do find it interesting that the registry entry characterizes it as a "reproduction." To me, that makes it sound as if it was built later (chronologically), but built in the style of and finished as an actual Ferretti team bike. I would think a genuine Ferretti team bike would be worth a lot more than an otherwise undistinguished '72 Masi.
Now, there are some possible scenarios in which the eBay listing would not be a misrepresentation:
(1) It is not the same bike; and Ken happens to be selling the real article that bears a strong resemblance to the Noel Smith reproduction. (2) It is the same bike; but Noel Smith was wrong in believing and representing to Mr. Hovey that it was a reproduction, an error that Ken has recognized. (3) It is the same bike; but whoever sold it to Ken convinced him that it was genuine and he is simply listing it as he believes it to be, an actual team bike. (4) The registry entry is simply erroneous (e.g. Noel Smith might never have owned a bike fitting that description).
I would be interested in finding out the real facts as to the provenance of the bike. Does any one on the list know Noel Smith? Or does anyone know anything more about the bike Ken is selling?
One thing that I find particularly interesting about this bike is that below the bottom bracket stamp reading "M59.5," there are two other smaller characters stamped that look like "G P" to me. "G P" could be for Gosta Pettersson. If this was actually his bike, this would be worth even more, I would think.
Pleasant Hill, CA USA