I’m not sure if it was the first Tommasini I ever saw in the flesh, but the one that stands out in my mind belonged to a Bicycle Messenger in San Francisco. Justin O’Hare.
It was a bold rosso red with flashes of white bolting along the top tube. In fairness, it was the rider that sat atop this steed that made it really stand out, much like Jordan made those Nike’s the enviable shoes. When I think of Tommasini I think of that bike carving up downtown traffic like a hot knife through butter. Italian butter of course!
Keepers of the Flame
A thousand miles away and decades earlier, Irio Tommasini forged his way into bicycle frame building after the second world war, and set up shop in Tuscany where the business still operates, run largely by his daughters and their families.
Tommasini has never been a shrinking violet.
Production still continues in steel at a steady pace with the Sintesi, Tecno and Fire frames – and the X-Fire in stainless.
Each frame is ‘fatti con le mani’ and serials continue to be stamped in the traditional methods. Seeing this was surreal – knowing I was in the birthplace of so many amazing frames that I’d seen, sold and desired.
What I really loved about the shop visit was the famiglia aspect of Tommasini. Two daughters, and their partners running the business created by their father, who to this day at the age of 80 something is still involved. On the weekends you’ll find his grandkids adding to the shop atmosphere.
More photos and captions in the gallery at the top.