Comprehensive DiCampli Files

Nov 20 2016


I decided to get this all together in one place: in the interest of Philadelphia and Urban Cycling history.

We’ve been putting this story together over the last 4 years.

We’ve gotten this far with the help help of Via Matt, Norm H, and Steven H.

There’s three personal stories mixed in here as well:

1)Steve H. (The Teen Racer.)
2)The original owner of Via Matt’s Olimpiade (DiCampli’s Lawyer)
3)Nick DiCampli and his Girlfriend (Shop Owner and Significant Other)


In the late 1960’s through the early 1970’s (Viet Nam War Era) there was a racing shop located in Center City on Quince Street.

The shop was run by two brothers. Nick and (?) DiCampli. It may have been called “The Bicycle Shop”

The store sold Frejus and possibly Cinelli.

At some point in time the DiCamplis sold rebranded frames and bikes using their name. DiCampli.

The bikes ranged from low end touring to high end racing. These frames were probably/possibly produced by the Emilio Bozzi shop in Milan.

In contemporary times these bikes pop up mostly in the Philadelphia Metro area but have been spotted as far away as Berkeley.

Here are some examples of different levels of the brand:

(maybe 1967)











(all found on internet forums and sale sites.)

Similar Frejus for Comparison:


We know this Frejus (actually a Legnano) came from the shop:

(via matt)

The following info was crowdsourced.

Shop Info:

Via Matt: When I was talking to the guy I got mine from he said the shop was at Spruce and Quince.

Steven H:I don’t remember the exact location but it was near Center City Philadelphia but somehow Quince Street sounds right. Since Quince is a narrow alley residential street I am wondering if the bicycle shop was on the corner of one of the cross streets like Spruce…I think the bicycle shop that I purchased it at was called “The Bicycle Shop”…

Bike Forum Post: As the story goes, she was living in Philadelphia in the late 60’s/early 70’s and was dating the owner of a local bike shop. Supposedly he was one of the top sellers of something(Frejus?) at the time and that manufacturer sent him this bike.

Via Matt: From what I understand, the shop was struggling and a solution was to bring in a partner (money) to help out. However, they would be losing total control of the business and did not want to go that route. As a result they closed down sometime later.

Steven H:
In any case, their bicycle store was open at least through 1972 when I bought it.

T-Editor:Imagine trying to run a racing shop in Philadelphia at the height of the Viet Nam war? There’s a draft. There’s social unrest. There’s an active counter culture and the city is full of colleges and Universities. It’s interesting to think about.

Bike Forum Post: (mechanic describing a different shop he worked in during the mid to late 70’s.) ” In that shop we sold Fuji, Centurion, Gitane, Astra, VeloSolex, Araya, TsunOda(Lotus), and probably some other stuff nobody’s ever heard of. My boss liked to buy closeouts and bank repos – Romano, Torpado, DiCampli, whatever. ”

The Shipping Container:
Via Matt: The story was that he had a bike stolen, a nice old Fiorelli and went to the DiCampli’s to buy a new bike.

They had just brought over a container from Italy through a creditor, but upon its arrival were not able to pay for it. So, it sat in a warehouse on the docks. One of the brothers told him about the container of bikes and said he could buy one. All he had to do was go into center city and pay the creditor for one of the bikes and then he could go down to the docks and pick it up, which is what he did.

The bike was then taken to the shop and assembled by the DiCampli’s for him.

I want to know what happened to the rest of the bikes / parts in that container as they knew what was up and were bringing in hard to get Euro shit at the time!

Steven H: (about his DiCampli) I remember that I had worked well over 100 hours in a mill to earn enough money to buy it and remember paying around $225 for it so it was a really big deal to me at the time. I think it was “on sale” because they told me that they had just gotten a container full of bicycles in and they said they had 2000 bicycles in stock as I recall. I am wondering if it was the container that the creditors were holding at the docks according to your write up and maybe the DiCampli brothers got it released to sell and pay up. Just a thought. I just remember there being a lot of bicycles there.

Bicycle Love Story

Bike Forum Post from 2004:As the story goes, she was living in Philadelphia in the late 60’s/early 70’s and was dating the owner of a local bike shop. Supposedly he was one of the top sellers of something at the time and that manufacturer sent him this bike. A year or two later he got a nicer one and gave this one to my mom. She rode it all over the place for a few years, it has pretty much been stored hanging in her garage for the last 15-20 years, however. Used to have a Cinelli frame-mount pump, but that’s long since missing, unfortunately.

Wrong Info:
screen-shot-2016-11-20-at-8-52-45-am Jersey Shore Craigslist 2012

Probably not built by Nick DiCampli



Not a Cinelli

(the Cinelli thing seems to be some common thread in a lot of these postings. I’m wondering if someone in the shop was a little liberal with his bike manufacturer description or if the Cinelli frame pumps just confused the issue.)

Info about Emilio Bozzi/Frejus/Legnano:

Norm H (about matt’s Olimpiade) “I can vouch that this was were the top of the line Frejus model as I was in the Frejus Store. They were also available in other color combinations. And, what was weird was that they had the exact same model in the Legnano design, with no chrome, etc, also for sale.There was also Frejus and Legnano wool jersies and shorts for sale, all made by Sergal.

I asked the salesman about these two similar models, and as I remember he shrugged, and said some people like the Frejus decals and other like the Legnano decals. The particular lettering design used on this particular Frejus downtube was the same design used to advertise Frejus bikes in Italy for many years. I still have mine, and cherish it always. You can see the original Frejus-Legnano business card which I picked up at the shop which is on Dale’s Frejus website.”

Norm’s Card:

Technical Details on High End DiCampli
(this one pictured is Columbus tubing)
Steven H:The bicycle was silver (not sky blue as I was thinking…still shaking the cobwebs out) but had several bands of sky blue around the seat tube with the DiCampli shield on it. The head tube of the bicycle was also sky blue with another decal of the DiCampli shield. There was a big DiCampli decal on a white background on the down tube if I recall correctly and the Super Corsa Decal was along the top tube also on a white panel. It had Compagnolo dropouts and fork ends and a steel headset that may also have been Campagnolo. It had a hard plastic seat and cotton sew up tires. It also had the Stronglight Cotterless crankset that I mentioned before but was the one that formed a five pointed star pattern inside of the chain rings. The head tube lugs were chromed as was the crown of the fork. Otherwise the fork was painted silver. The bottom bracket, however was fairly cheap being welded at the bottom, not cast. The frame had low angles more like a road touring bicycle as opposed to the more upright steeper angles of a racing bicycle. However, it had surprisingly short chain stays that made the rear wheel tuck in much closer in like a more expensive racing bicycle. There were other distinctive features about the frame that no matter how it was painted would make it readily identifiable. The DiCampli Super Corsa that I bought was definitely Falk double butted tubing which is unusual as Falk was a competitor of Columbus but was generally considered similar at the time. My suspicion is that only the 3 main tubes were double butted as the bicycle was light but not as light as say a Peugeot PX-10E at the time.

There were also no braze-ons so everything had to be clamped or clipped on. For example the rear brake cable ran along the top tube and was held in place by three chrome clips. The water bottle cage was also clamped on the down tube and had an interesting spring clip design that held the water bottle very securely. The front derailleur was a Compagnolo Valentino that clamped on the seat tube and the Compagnolo shift levers were also clipped on the down tube. The rear derailleur was Compagnolo Valentino as well. The wheel hubs were high flange Compagnolo Tipo withe 36 hole three cross spoked wheels. As I mentioned the tires were the glue on sew up type. The spokes were also double butted. It had a cheap steel seat post and steel seat post bolt and Universal Center pull brakes. If I recall correctly, the pedals had a chrome steel outer cage but I don’t recall the manufacturer. The handlebars and stem were TTT record as I mentioned in my previous post. So the bike was of mid to higher end quality overall with a couple of parts that did not match the rest (like the bottom bracket, the lugs other than around the head tube and fork crown which were clearly better, and the seat post and bolt). Overall it was a very nice rider and a comfortable bike. The handling characteristics were decent but very different than a bike like a Colnago Super. It had a very stable and “sure footed” feel to it, particularly on steep winding descents. So that is about what I know about it. I think that you are right in that it was a rebranded Frejus with a few changes in equipment and the decals which were done specifically for the DiCampli brothers.

Low End Description from EBay:

Vintage 1970’s DiCampli CORSA Roadbike 56cm bottom bracket (center) to toptube (center). Campagnolo Deraileurs, shifters and Hubs. Unknown 3-piece Cotter pin cranks and pedals, BB axle has “57” stamped on it. Universal brand Center pull brake calipers. and Levers. Italian ttt stem. Paint is chipping in some areas and the frame is ALL chrome underneath. It doesn’t say it is Chromoly, but the frame is Very light and Thin Walled. Made in Italy decal says “Seamless Steel Tubing”.The hub skewers are original Campagnolo.The rear Rim is “Maccari Torino” steel and the front is “NISI TORO” Aluminum

Legnano Green Description:

Color: Light olive green.
ttt gooseneck stem.
ttt road drop handlebar.
Ribbon handlebar tape (Made in Italy).
Universal brake levers.
Universal Med 61 center pulled dual pivot brakes with quick releases.
25.4mm diameter seatpost.
Campagnolo downtube friction shifters (2X5).
Campagnolo front/rear derailleur.
Campagnolo cotterless crankset: 40T, 52T.
170mm crank arms.
Rigida rear freewheel: 14T, 18T, 20T, 24T, 28T.
Rigida 27″ wheels, 36 spokes, atala hubs. Front: Quick release skewers. Rear: Non quick release.

(Have DiCampli Bicycle information? Please contact

The DiCampli Mystery has been my favorite thing on Landlords since the blog started.

I like the Mystery coming together.

Information travels generationally in this post.

80 year old-60 year old-40 year old-20 year old.