Handbuilt Bicycle News

Bicycle Components


Matthew Butterman

Wednesday 16 March 2016

Campagnolo: Italian Classic

Components from the Vicenza, Italy-based brand are a perfect compliment to handbuilt and retro/classic bikes

Campagnolo: Italian Classic
Matt Butterman

Campagnolo components with classic lines are the perfect compliment to your handbuilt, custom or retro-themed bike.

"Campagnolo is a natural fit with handbuilt bikes because our products are also handbuilt," said Tom Kattus of Campagnolo North America. "Even our electronic groupsets are handbuilt, and we do all of our own tooling at our factories."

Two satellite factories in Romania now share production output with the Vicenza, Italy homebase, but Campagnolo has resisted the trend toward Asian production. And it's important to note that people, and not robots or machines, are still critically involved in the production process.

"Even something relatively simple, such as our chains, require many individual workers along the path to complete product," said Kattus.

If you were born any time before 1980, you probably remember the days when Campagnolo components completely dominated the racing scene, and much of the high-end marketplace. With the rising popularity of retro-themed, L'Eroica style rides, where technology after 1987 is forbidden, Campagnolo components from the 1980s and before are now highly coveted. But what do you do if you can't get your hands on a 1986 Super Record gruppo, or if you want the best of modern technology, but with classic styling?


Kattus told us that Campagnolo gets requests constantly for retro-themed components. What they offer currently is the Athena 11-speed groupset in silver finish. The only real difference in shifting capability is that the Athena group offers "Power Shift" levers rather than the "Ultra Shift" that the higher end Record and Super Record groups feature. Kattus also said that Campagnolo is exploring the possibility of offering these higher-level groupsets in silver finish as well.

So while you won't see Campagnolo reintroducing Delta brakes or Super Record fluted aluminum seatposts any time soon, you can still hearken back to the halcyon days of Merckx and Moser and Hinault with classic-looking, high-performance silver-finish components.

Find out more about Campagnolo's latest offerings at www.campagnolo.com.