GION "ITALIA"

HPL

Apr 28, 2020
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Giovanni Pelizzoli built frame shortly after he sold off his "Ciocc" brand (early '80s), and before he started making frames branded with his name. Pronounced like "Joan", not gi'on. Apparently there were very few of these frames made; a little over 100 by some accounts, but under 200 regardless. I have seen only 2 or 3 other examples; not all with the same tubing or features (one with "aero" top mount down tube shifters). This is built with Columbus SL tubing, 27.2mm i.d. seat tube. Frame is built by Giovanni himself, signed and stamped as such. He had made his name with his previous brand and did not need to concern himself with the commercial aspects of frame building; merely wanting to build small volume high quality custom frames to the user's specifications. The frame and finish are a testament to this; no decals! I am finishing this bike with early to mid '80s Campy Super Record components. Maybe will complete this year upon obtaining final missing components. I have been getting parts for it over the past 1 1/2 years, but still looking for the right parts to complete the build. If anyone has further information regarding this marque l would appreciate it.


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HPL

Apr 28, 2020
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The lugs, the braze-ons, the fork crown, that is a thing of beauty!
Thanks Matti, that guy still makes steel frames himself (he's nearly 80), his kids and relatives produce the carbon, and alloy frames, and painting. Never had a Ciocc so this seemed like a good concession, maybe better than a Ciocc. I've had offers, but I'm taking my time looking for reasonable deals on parts, still under $500 total spent thus far with about $200 left if I don't go crazy (panto'd parts, etc.).
 
Jul 16, 2019
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I'd say that the limited run makes it more special. Did he make every single Ciocc frame as well? If not, I'd assume that the guarantee that this was handmade by an old master would make it worth more too. But I doubt you are worried about resale.
 

HPL

Apr 28, 2020
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@MattiThundrrr , @Karate Chicken Industries

Crap, I went to my coworker/friend's computer at work (we've finally relaxed some of our work restrictions) and posted on his name; never thought about checking my log in first; if you got 2 notifications, sorry; my fault! We finally got to talk face to face so to speak; behind masks.

I do not know if Pelizzoli made all the Ciocc frames himself; it would seem that when the brand became more popular and there teams using his frames it would be hard to keep up with the demand and maintain the quality. Considering his marque gained great popularity around '77 when a World Championship was won on his product and he sold the company around 1980, it would make sense that he would not have been able to do the type of work he wanted to do, and thus relieved himself of some of the "commercial" pressure allowing him to concentrate (again) on artisan frame building with his signature quality. I have heard of another marque that he supposedly put out, "John the Star", apparently for the overseas market (John in Italian= Giovanni). I have never seen one and have not really been able to find any info other the name. Someone probably has one of those frames and doesn't realize what they've got; I know if I see one, I'm grabbing it regardless of the size if reasonably priced.
As far as building up frames, I always have a couple on the "back burner" waiting for proper parts (whether by period, or "custom" mix, etc.), so no rush to buy them; and I also have one that is ready to get started on, although it seems to take me awhile even when I think I'm done. There's always something I think could be better and/or I come across a component at a great price that I find more appropriate or the same part but in better condition. I remember spending a good chunk of change on some parts when I first started to rebuild bikes (mostly to restore for my '75 Colnago Super, my first real race bike of now over 30 years owning), now I am quite good at getting parts, and/or entire bikes for the parts at more than reasonable prices since there is always someone just trying to "clear out the garage"; good example: '82/'83Trek 660 (Reynolds 531 DB frame) with full Campy Nuovo Record except Maillard wheels, $125 in excellent condition frame and parts. I probably would have paid twice as much since buying the Campy and other parts separately in its condition would have cost that much. Now the frame is getting sold for the price I paid for the whole bike which would still be a deal for a 531 frame, it's about 58 cm so unless someone wanted me to do a build in that size it's just catching dust. Most 531 frames are fetching about $200 give or take depending on demand, $150 no problem. My bike Co-op was going out of business and was trying to get rid their old stuff; They had an unknown Rossin frame that passed my eyes; tossed them a quick $100 before anybody had time to think. Bang, a killer Columbus SL frame from the '80s that would sell for $300 plus on any given day. Yeah another project I'm slowly amassing parts for; it never stops!
As a side note on the Gion; I recently saw a track version that was somewhat tore up and built as a city fixed gear (flat bar, etc.), a little outside my general "purist" range, but to each his own. That only makes 4 of these frames I've see including mine; and only 2 were of the same exact frame build. There is a European forum that is fairly strict on "bikes" only type conversation with some very knowledgeable folks who know their "Euro-bike" history, so I think if I post my frame there I may get some more definitive info, and find another example or two; but I need to post in French. Sacre bleu!