Monday Blues: Italvega...

At first glance I though, "oh, a Univega". But no, closer inspection revealed it to be an Italvega. "Similar head badge, similar name? Coincidence?" Nope, there is a reason for the similarity. 

Before spotting this bike I had never heard of the Italvega brand so, naturally, I was curious about it. Was it some copy of the well-known Univega line? An attempt to capitalize on that name? What is the story? Turns out there is a connection between the two, and that Italvega has a distinguished pedigree. Ben Lawee, who created both Univega and Bertoni bicycles, and his company Lawee Inc., also designed and imported the Italvega line. Developed at the Torresini workshop and Torpado factory in Italy, Italvega production began in 1970, but lasted for under ten years, before manufacturing was moved to Japan and consolidated under the name Univega. All Italvega frames were made at the Torpado factory; during the years of manufacture six different models were produced, each of differing quality. Those model names were: Viva Sport, Nuovo Sport, Nuovo Record, Super Record, Super Speciale, Super Light. The top end models used double-butted Columbus tubing and had Campagnolo Record and Nuovo Record components; they can also be distinguished by their rectangular Columbus foil decal. Mid-range models used the triangular Columbus decal, while the lower-range models have no tubing decals.

I saw this at the Velo, but before I could get back to check on the Columbus sticker it had been sold. Alas.

Blue: A color, a mood or emotion, a genre of music. Tune in each Monday for another installment of the Blues, with a cycling twist.