In the little information I’ve been able to find out about this marque I have heard it described as being in “Holy Grail” territory for bicycles. The fine craftsmanship and attention to detail by Gianni Sancineto make them a highly desirable rider. This time you won’t get a step by step account of the bike build. I gathered all of the parts over the past few months and just put it together. The intended style of this bike is kind of a Nuovo-Retro build. I have a number of older period-correct bikes already so this time I thought some newer components on an older frame would be cool. I am not exactly sure of the age of this frame but I believe it to be a 1991 model. It has 130 mm rear spacing so that pretty much pegs it at 1990 or later.  It is very hard to find any information on this marque even though they have been producing bikes for almost 100 years! I will keep researching to find out what I can. The Columbus Aelle tubing places it in the Sport Bike category I believe but the nice lugwork and fine details make it a very nice example of that!

Since I was not going to be period correct I had a little latitude in my component selection, but in my world an Italian frame must have Campy on it! For this bike I chose Chorus 9 speed hubs, derailleurs and brakes. I ended up with Veloce shifters and cassette but they still look nice and are a good match. The rims are 32 hole Mavic Open Pros which I use on many of my newer bikes. They have a nice look, ride great and are very sturdy.

Something different for me on this bike is the use of some Velo Orange parts. Going “off the reservation” by using some non-Campy components offers some new options in a bike build. The stock 53/39 chainrings from a Campy crankset simply do not offer the kind of real world gearing options that non-racers want. Going with a VO crankset allowed me to use 48/36 chainrings which offer a better range for me. It is also a very nice looking crank!

To get the proper chain line I also used a VO bottom bracket which as it turns out is quite light. A VO headset, stem, seatpost and water bottle cages round out my VO spec on this bike. On top of the seatpost is a Cardiff saddle which is a Brooks knockoff, and on the stem are a set of Cinelli “Giro d’Italia” bars. The cable routing is aero so it has very clean look. I also put a set of Specialized 25 c tires which are as large as will fit on this frame.

I always try to use original Campagnolo cables and housings. They just seem to last longer and function better!

The end result is a sport bike that tips the scales at 19 lbs 10 oz. and there are probably some weight savings that I left on the table. A more svelt pedal set, racier tires and a lighter seat would have brought this bike down to under 19 lbs pretty easily. It goes to prove that steel bikes can be light weight too.

Although at a glance the bike looks pretty clean the frame retains many of its original blemishes. Chipped paint and some rust spots on the chrome were all cleaned and treated and should be stable now. The overall great look of the bike is thanks to all of the shiny parts! It is still amazing to me how polished components and a little chrome can really make a bike pop!

The initial test rides revealed that this is a wonderful bike to ride. It tracks straight and true and is quite stable with hands off the bars. It cruises nicely at speed and feels lively when accelerating. I still have to dial in the brakes and shifting after the cables have stretched but I am quite happy with it so far!

Sancineto Bicycles

I wish I could find out more infomation on this builder. Sancineto has been making bicycles for nearly 100 years. They have always been a family business located in northern Italy outside of Turin. I have heard that they are no longer producing bicycle frames although their actual status is unconfirmed.

This bike was either built in or sold from a shop in Denmark by the name of Pedal Atleten. The shop sticker is still on the frame. The shop is still in business and I have tried to contact them, but have received no response yet.

Here is an excerpt I picked up from another blog, Cycle Exif with a few details:

  • To an aficionado of custom Italian road racing bicycles, a Sancineto is  considered Holy Grail territory. Regardless of their desirability, however, they  are still one of the most unknown marques. Once you get past the flamboyant  paint, fine engineering details start to appear, along with the realization that  you’re looking at something really special. Sancineto is a family-run frame builder located in Cuneo, Italy. Pietro  Sancineto, in the Italian tradition, raced bicycles and began making frames  around 1919. His son Sabastiano carried on, who trained his son,  Gianni. Gianni is, to the best of my knowledge, still making frames.