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Giant v Colnago

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Mar 10, 2009
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I don't have a vested interest in Colnago but I am a steel afficianado (fillet brazed custom Enigma Elite at the moment). I was led to believe that at least the Colnago Master X Light is still brazed in Cambiago as RdV has said. I heard that they even reemployed the old guy that used to braze the frames back in the eighties! Not sure how steady his hand is now :D
 
Mar 19, 2009
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frameforum said:
What 'million dollars worth of tooling'?

Ok, alright. Not a million, but he's putting on a pretty expensive circus if what you say is true, that not a single frame is made there. I'm still having a hard time believing that it's all there just for show.

Doesn't matter anyway. Like I said before, nobody cares about the nationality of the bike like we used to, and Oregon is the new Lombardia, but the pros don't ride steel anymore, just those crazy hipsters in painted on jeans showing plumbers crack and studded belts. Cool, really cool.:D Rock on Portland!!! Woooo hooooo!
 
Mar 15, 2009
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LugHugger said:
I don't have a vested interest in Colnago but I am a steel afficianado (fillet brazed custom Enigma Elite at the moment). I was led to believe that at least the Colnago Master X Light is still brazed in Cambiago as RdV has said. I heard that they even reemployed the old guy that used to braze the frames back in the eighties! Not sure how steady his hand is now :D
Colnago is running a business. It's not a charity or benevolent fund. Colnago is a decent enough guy himself, but business is business. So, the next time you're told Colnago is building frames in the basement under his house, just ask yourself this :::

Would your local council allow you to store and use oxy-acetylene in your house?

If you don't know the answer, go ask your local framebuilder.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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LugHugger said:
I don't have a vested interest in Colnago but I am a steel afficianado (fillet brazed custom Enigma Elite at the moment). I was led to believe that at least the Colnago Master X Light is still brazed in Cambiago as RdV has said. I heard that they even reemployed the old guy that used to braze the frames back in the eighties! Not sure how steady his hand is now :D

God... After all this, I don't even know if all the Masters were made there towards the end of steel in the pro ranks. Mine is circa '97, which the pros were still riding at the time. Has the Made in Italy sticker on it. I don't know, whatever. One of the best bikes I've ever owned regardless.
 
Mar 15, 2009
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RDV4ROUBAIX said:
God... After all this, I don't even know if all the Masters were made there towards the end of steel in the pro ranks. Mine is circa '97, which the pros were still riding at the time. Has the Made in Italy sticker on it. I don't know, whatever. One of the best bikes I've ever owned regardless.


If you want to believe it, believe it.
Marketing is marketing, whether its coming out of Milan, Portland or Taichung.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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frameforum said:
If you want to believe it, believe it.
Marketing is marketing, whether its coming out of Milan, Portland or Taichung.

I'll tell you what though, I'd rather ride a Taiwanese Colnago Master than an over priced/hyped $3k Vanilla that you have to wait 5 years for.;)
 
Mar 15, 2009
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RDV4ROUBAIX said:
I'll tell you what though, I'd rather ride a Taiwanese Colnago Master than an over priced/hyped $3k Vanilla that you have to wait 5 years for.;)

If Vanilla had been around 30 years ago and RdV had ridden one, would you still say that?

There's one born every minute...marketing myth, that is.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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RDV4ROUBAIX said:
God... After all this, I don't even know if all the Masters were made there towards the end of steel in the pro ranks. Mine is circa '97, which the pros were still riding at the time. Has the Made in Italy sticker on it. I don't know, whatever. One of the best bikes I've ever owned regardless.

I'd be pretty sure that your frame is hand built in Italy. It seems that Ernesto was at least a decade behind the mass-marketeers in waking up to Taiwanese production.....
 
Mar 11, 2009
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Master50 said:
Why don't you stop now. I have a friend in Montreal that spent a week in Italy to visit some of the product manufacturers for their lines he has been in the Colnago factory and except for some Of their domestic lines (sold in Italy only) and the CLX all Colnagos are Made in Italy. Ferrari is the main supplier of Colnago's Carbon parts and is the source for a lot of their Carbon engineering base knowledge. I have seen more than 1 recent video of Colnago's production lines and unless there are a lot of Italians in Taiwan the factory is in Italy.
Now if your point is that Colnago doesn't own the factory, so what? All the bikes made there are Colnagos. Heck most of the guys building the Carbon bikes are wearing Colnago logos on their work clothes.
I own 3 and there may be bikes of equal quality and performance there are not many better.

I didn't say they weren't made in ITALY, I said there really isn't a dedicated Colnago factory. These factorys make many frames that wear other decals, that's all. Said nothing about quality, performance or anything else(altho their warranty policies leave a lot to be desired).

Mizuno is the main supplier of carbon for Colnago, as well as for Pinarello and DeRosa.
 
Mar 11, 2009
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RDV4ROUBAIX said:
Sorry Pietro, Master50 is absolutely right. There are only 3 lower models that are sourced from Taiwan, all their top end carbon is made in house. The question mark is still up for the CLX though. I was under the impression when the CLX came out in '06 that they were sourcing that from Giant in Taiwan. I remember it was big news as all the Colnago tifosi were up in arms that the mighty Colnago finally gave in to Asia. Maybe James Huang could confirm that.

Pietro you honestly believe that the company that is responsible for countless advances in carbon tech just up and packed up their lab to outsource all their bikes from Asia? Heck, even the steel Master is still made in Cambiago.;)

Once again, I didn't say they weren't made in ITALY, I said there really isn't a dedicated Colnago factory in ITALY. I never mentioned Taiwan or Asia, you did.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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frameforum said:
If Vanilla had been around 30 years ago and RdV had ridden one, would you still say that?

Hell yeah! I don't ride a Gios either. Not really fond of that custom steel crowd, even though I love the ride of steel. They drop thousands on a bike they have to wait eons for to ultimately just do organic grocery runs, hipster bar hopping, and art showings in those stupid knickers and wool cycling caps, always earth tones of course. For those that think road racers are snobs, these custom steel dorks take it to another level entirely. Well...at least they're riding a bike.:)
 
Mar 19, 2009
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Pietro said:
Once again, I didn't say they weren't made in ITALY, I said there really isn't a dedicated Colnago factory in ITALY. I never mentioned Taiwan or Asia, you did.

I'm still unconvinced that Erensto doesn't produce a single frame out of his shop, especially with all that frame building equipment. If frameforum is right, and Ernesto is just putting on a show, I've totally lost my respect for him. He's not a marketing genius by doing that, more like a...liar.
 
Jul 11, 2009
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Of course the factory isn't literally "underneath Ernesto's home", it's quite big don't you think? It's just a lot cheaper to outsource frame manufacturing these days. I do think they still make the EPS in Italy, perhaps just for old times sake. The production method is hardly different from making a steel frame anyway, as you can see in the video (quite outdated if you ask me, but still works).

I am quite sure they paint their high-end frames in Italy or elsewhere in Europe, as it's a lot better to control paint quality that way. Even low-cost frame manufacturers like Cube and Focus have their frames painted in Germany.
 
Jun 16, 2009
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frameforum said:
If you want to believe it, believe it.
Marketing is marketing, whether its coming out of Milan, Portland or Taichung.

How true,
I had a couple of teammates i was rooming with at a race, one guy was pretty new had just upgraded to our category. He was really proud of his new Eddy Merckx bike that he bought used from a friend, we went to check it out and it was really heavy. When we flipped it over you could see a welded seam on the downtube, either it had a major repair or was made from seamed tubing. Up until then he was riding pretty well on it but after that he sucked. The funny thing was the next day the other roommate's front derailleur braze on pulled completely off when he upshifted during the race.
A brand new Serotta that cost him thousands. Afterwards he was so mad he offered to swap it for the fake Merckx and the other guy refused.
he said with a totally straight face"No Way, everyone knows Serotta's are a piece of crud"
:D
 
Mar 11, 2009
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RDV4ROUBAIX said:
I'm still unconvinced that Erensto doesn't produce a single frame out of his shop, especially with all that frame building equipment. If frameforum is right, and Ernesto is just putting on a show, I've totally lost my respect for him. He's not a marketing genius by doing that, more like a...liar.

Oh, come on. Merckx has never had a torch in his hand nor has lots of others. Colnago started as a frame builder when he was wrenching for Faema, made some of Eddy's frames. Now the head of the company, oversees design and manufacturing, still respected in Italy and elsewhere.
 
Mar 19, 2009
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Pietro said:
Oh, come on. Merckx has never had a torch in his hand nor has lots of others.
Pfff! Really Pietro? Who stated anywhere that Merckx was a frame builder? Oh, come on my foot.
Colnago started as a frame builder when he was wrenching for Faema, made some of Eddy's frames. Now the head of the company, oversees design and manufacturing, still respected in Italy and elsewhere.
Not cool if you're pulling a marketing stunt like this to make the world believe you're still Made in Italy. That much frame building equipment, and not a single frame produced out of it like some of you are claiming, highly doubt it. The skeptical eye has made an appearance.
 
Jul 15, 2009
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My EPS has ' Made in Italy' on the headset and sticker on the frame near the bottom bracket.... If that was not the case, then colnago would be in all sorts of problems with the EU and face a big fine and loss of consumer confidence, if it was discovered that they were actually made elsewhere. Find that one hard to believe. The CX-1, CLX are made in Asia (Colango do not claim otherwise). The C50, EP and EPS are made in italy.

The definition of 'Made in Italy' for the EPS could translate to assembled and painted, with tubes sourced from Asia, but from discusions on other forums it appears that they made be made by ATR in Italy (who also make carbon for Ferrari).

No idea if the video is genuine or not, but would seem totally bizarre if it is a fake.

The story about the old steel frame builder being brought out of retirement, may not be far from the truth. There is still a demand for Master X -Lites and not necessarily enough guys with the skills in steel frame building.
 
Mar 10, 2009
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RDV4ROUBAIX said:
Hell yeah! I don't ride a Gios either. Not really fond of that custom steel crowd, even though I love the ride of steel. They drop thousands on a bike they have to wait eons for to ultimately just do organic grocery runs, hipster bar hopping, and art showings in those stupid knickers and wool cycling caps, always earth tones of course. For those that think road racers are snobs, these custom steel dorks take it to another level entirely. Well...at least they're riding a bike.:)

Oi! I resent that remark! Or should that be resemble? Nope, grow my own veg, nearest hipster bar is 70 miles away, art?, no wool knickers (itchy?). I do love to ride my bike though. :)
 
Mar 15, 2009
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The top end carbon frames are assembled in Italy by contractors from materials sourced elsewhere, not built in Colnago's basement. it doesn't matter; they've got good contractors working for them.


Now, the truth is this:

There's absolutely nothing wrong with Taiwanese parts or frames.

In many cases they're better than the European-made stuff. If European brands went to Taiwan and asked for their stuff to be built on quality, not price, then things would be a lot better. Unfortunately, things are built to a price in order for the brands to spend more money on marketing spin such as the 'Italian Heritage' myth.

I can think of only a few Euro-based brands who take the 'quality first, price second' route. As a result, their stuff is superb; as good as you'll get anywhere, putting a lot - but not all - of the European stuff to shame..

There's a distinct possibility this year's Tour winner will win on a Taiwan-produced grouppo and possibly on a Taiwanese-built frame too.
Do you think that will harm sales of replicas or make the winner's bike any less attractive as bike porn? I don't.

As for the 'Made In Italy' sticker thing, I once visited a well-known components brand and was shown a new part being introduced to their range. I immediately recognised it as a part made by a Taiwanese manufacturer - I had a sample sitting in a box at home.

When I said 'hang on a minute, this is made by so and so in Taiwan and you've got 'Made in Italy' on the box and on the swing tag' !
Their response was:
"Yes - both the box and the label were made here. There's nothing on the part which says 'Made in Italy', is there?"

They thought it was funny....
 
Mar 10, 2009
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We seem to have got a little diverted. It would appear that we agree that the top end carbon and steel Colnago's are Made in Italy still and that their engineering credentials and performance figures are right up their at the top of the tree. Other volume producers have moved their production offshore and that the engineering on the top framesets is also up there at the top of the tree.

My objection was an unfounded and ill-conceived accusation regarding Colnago's technology and performance.
 
Mar 15, 2009
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RDV4ROUBAIX said:
Hell yeah! I don't ride a Gios either. Not really fond of that custom steel crowd, even though I love the ride of steel. They drop thousands on a bike they have to wait eons for to ultimately just do organic grocery runs, hipster bar hopping, and art showings in those stupid knickers and wool cycling caps, always earth tones of course. For those that think road racers are snobs, these custom steel dorks take it to another level entirely. Well...at least they're riding a bike.:)

If that was intended as a pop at me for bursting your bubble, sorry; but you're way off the mark. No organic grocery runs, no custom Vanilla and Portland is 6000 miles away. Feel free to shore up your comfy zone by all means, but check your facts first before going down the indirect insult path.
 
Mar 11, 2009
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frameforum said:
If that was intended as a pop at me for bursting your bubble, sorry; but you're way off the mark. No organic grocery runs, no custom Vanilla and Portland is 6000 miles away. Feel free to shore up your comfy zone by all means, but check your facts first before going down the indirect insult path.

Well said along with that about 'nothing wrong with frames made in Taiwan/China'.

BTW-I have a steel bike, way to old for the hipster thing, ride about 8000 miles a year, don't have mud guards or racks on my bicycle, no wool hats, etc...
 
Mar 19, 2009
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frameforum said:
If that was intended as a pop at me for bursting your bubble, sorry; but you're way off the mark. No organic grocery runs, no custom Vanilla and Portland is 6000 miles away. Feel free to shore up your comfy zone by all means, but check your facts first before going down the indirect insult path.

No, not at all. I was just stereotyping with a deflection in my voice that you can't hear on a forum. No harm intended. Not to mention I have plenty of dork friends that are really into the custom steel set, two of which are custom frame builders!!!. We give each other plenty of sh!t, and don't take ourselves so seriously. Come to think of it, I'll even be at NAHBS in Feb. Watch out all you trendy biaches!!! Hell, I wouldn't mind custom steel 'eurocross' from Ben Steelman, just don't have that Silicone Valley kinda loot to afford one. 10 years ago you could get one for $1200, now about $3K!!!

My Asian made factory direct carbon F & F just arrived today. NOT A COLNAGO!!! Unfortunately. :)
L1020142.JPG
 
Mar 19, 2009
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juggler said:
There is still a demand for Master X -Lites and not necessarily enough guys with the skills in steel frame building.

They actually stopped building the Master for maybe 3 years, and the fans of that bike, including me, were up in arms when production stopped, so they brought it back last year at Interbike. IMHO, the Master was the last of the GREAT steel race frames. And keep in mind, no less than 12 years ago the majority of the pro peloton was still riding steel. 3 squads on a combination of Masters, C40s, Bititan and Dream.. Mapei, Rabobank, and Casino.
 

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