Bianchi Folgorissima 'Super Lightning' - 1950
Posted: Wednesday 12th August 2020
|Frame||1950 Bianchi Folgorissima frame no. 285030; seat tube 56cm c to c, top tube 57.5cm c to c.|
|Wheels||NISI “Moncalieri” (Aluminium) sprint rims on F.B. for Bianchi hubs (aluminium /steel), with Campagnolo QR skewer with modern made tubs having a vintage look. 28mm|
|Chainset||F.B. for Bianchi. 49 tooth chainwheel. (Steel).|
|Pedals||Sheffield with Cornez toeclips|
|Gears||pre "Paris Roubaix" engraved Una Leva derailleur with 4-speed freewheel, Regina 3/32” chain|
|Brakes||Universal Mod. 50. (Aluminium / Steel)|
|Stem/Bars||Ambrosio “Bianchi” (steel).|
|Saddle||Aquila. (Leather / Steel)|
|Extra details||Total bicycle weight = 24.5 Lbs, 11.1 Kgs
I acquired this Bianchi from the original owner in Italy in the 1990s he had kept it in his living room! It was his "baby"!
Incredibly it has survived, save the tyres, with all its original components.
It had many layers of blue cotton bar tape which I carefully removed and replaced with the same coloured cotton tape.
I have ridden it on the road and mastered the Campag Una Leva gear change. It changes as fast as any modern derailleur but it is imperative that when the skewer is released, DO NOT PEDAL FORWARD! The wheel shoots out of the frame in an instant!
The Bianchi “Folgorissima” was introduced in mid 1949 as Bianchi’s top of the range racing bicycle. It was introduced to show case the new Campagnolo “Una Leva” 4-speed derailleur. The Folgorissima model was short-lived as in April of 1950, the great Italian racing Campionissimo, Fausto Coppi, rode a Bianchi Folgorissima to victory in the Paris-Roubaix spring classic race. As a result, Bianchi immediately re-named the Folgorissima to “Paris-Roubaix”!
The Bianchi Folgorissima existed on the Bianchi inventory for less than one year making it the scarcest Bianchi racing bicycle ever produced.