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BIANCHI Folgore, Campagnolo Cambio Corsa, 56.5cm (late 1940s) – SOLD

Bianchi is the world’s oldest bicycle-making company still in existence, founded in 1885 by Eduardo Bianchi in Milan, Italy. No doubt, Bianchi is the pioneer of bicycle development since the beginning:

– In 1885 Bianchi  pioneered the use of equal-sized wheels with pneumatic rubber tires;

– Edoardo Bianchi designed first lady bike in 1895 and it was made for Queen Margaret;

– The Bianchi reputation began when the company sponsored Giovanni Tommasello, the winner of the Grand Prix de Paris in 1899, which evolves into Tour de France;

– Bianchi presented the first bicycle ever featuring a cardan joint transmission in 1901;

– They invented the front brake system in 1913;

– In 1914 Bianchi was a famous and reputed manufacturer: in just one year, production settled on extraordinary figures: 45.000 bicycles, 1.500 motorbikes and 1000 cars;

– In 1915, Bianchi produced a bike for the Army, equipped with wide-section tyres, folding frame and suspensions on both wheels.

 

Back in early 1940s, Tulio Campagnolo stood on a cold mountain top, and couldn’t unscrew the wing nuts on the rear wheel of his bike because his fingers were frozen. He enhanced his products while constantly seeking cutting-edge solutions. In mid 1940s he invented the quick release hub and revolutionary gearing system called Campagnolo Cambio Corsa called also Campagnolo ”due leve” (two lewers) gearing system. To change gear the rider would:

– Reach back to the seat-stay and turn the higher mounted lever to release the rear wheel (The lever was in effect a extended quick release).

– Back pedal.

– The lower  lever with a cage mounted over the chain is enabling the rider to select the sprocket he wanted by turning the lever.

– Once the chain was engaged on the correct sprocket the rider would stop backpedaling and turn the higher lever back to it’s locked position. This action would lock the wheel and release the changing fork.

– The rider could then pedal forward again and go on his merry way.

 

With this extremelly rare milestone of cycling history, Premium Cycling reached the top of what we can offer  to bike collectors worldwide – Bianchi Folgore, which dates back to late 1940s.

The ”Folgore” was Bianchi’s top of the line racing bike from late 1930s till 1949. Extraordinary details of the steel frame makes you understand that Edoardo Bianchi was a medical tool engineer, before he started with bike manufacturing. The details like hidden headset, bottom bracket oil braze-on and top tube mounted seat post clamp with serial number underneath illustrate the painstaking work done in his factory.

Equiped with original Campagnolo Corsa ”due leve” gearing system, original Bianchi cranks, Campagnolo hubs, C.B. wooden rims, Sheffield Sprint pedals, Universal 454939 brakes and levers, Brooks saddle.

With this cycling milestone you can get an incredible experience how cycling heroes rode back in the golden era of cycling history or just to get a lot of attention at any historic cycling events. Almost identical bike was ridden by Fausto Coppi back in late 1940s.

Very special piece for any vintage bike collector.

 

 

Frame & Fork: BIANCHI Folgore

Size:

– seat tube (c-t): 56.5 cm

– top tube (c-c): 58 cm

– headset tube: 12 cm

– standover: 79.5 cm

Gearing system: Campagnolo Cambio Corsa ”Due leve”

Crankset: Bianchi, original (48t)

Bottom bracket : Bianchi

Brake Levers: Universal

Brakes: Universal Extra 454393

Headset: Bianchi integrated

Hubs: Campagnolo

Rims: C.B. wooden

Freewheel: 4 speed

Stem: steel

Saddle: BROOKS

Pedals: Sheffield Sprint

 

 

Condition: Used, but good condition. Restored with new paint and decals 10 years ago. No cracks, no dents, not bent. All parts are working fine.

Year: 1948-49

Price: SOLD (November 2023)