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Battaglin Portofino gives modern look to world’s first oversized lugged steel road bike

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike
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The Portofino is at once an anachronism and a classic beauty. Few will argue against the traditional looks of old lugged steel road bikes. But in an era of lighter, stiffer modern framesets and ever-increasing gearing spreads out back, it’s hard to justify getting a lugged bike these days without getting left behind on the build. That’s where the true beauty of the Officina Battaglin frame comes in, mixing classic lugged steel construction with oversized tubing for the best of old & new…

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike
c. Officina Battaglin

Established by 1981 Giro-Vuelta double Grand Tour winner Giovanni Battaglin, Officina Battaglin first debuted the innovative Portofino modern lugged frame a couple of years back.

With its modern oversized diameter, premium Columbus Spirit tubing, the Portofino lays claim to being the first ever steel bike to be built with true oversized lugs. Battaglin developed their own proprietary cast lugs to fit the lightweight, triple-butted Spirit HSS tubeset, delivering handling stiffness, drivetrain efficiency, and rider comfort at the saddle. But they also worked with Columbus to pair an exclusive set of stays to fit the bike, and of course the unique tapered headtube.

Officina Battaglin Portofino, made-to-order custom steel

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike

“We worked on the Portofino and on the proprietary lug castings for more than a year”, says Giovanni Battaglin. Creating their own lugs now allows Battaglin to build the bike in either 1cm stock sizing (or even to-measure) for each rider with modern road geometry.

In fact, every Portofino that comes out of their Italian workshop is made-to-order, starting with an individual consultation with Giovanni Battaglin himself. Buyers talk with the Grand Tour winner about their riding style, personal needs & real measurements, in order to create the perfect frame for each rider.

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike

The newest iteration of the Portofino also gets a new 2-color paint scheme for 2019, with a dark mocha brown base, then dark amber engraved & painted details. And of course its  classic look is complemented by the shiny chromed lugs & chrome chainstay.

Portofino tech details

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike

A truly handmade modern take on a traditional Italian frame, the Portofino features a tapered headtube so you can pair it to a modern fork. It is still a classic race bike, designed to fit just 25mm tires, although Battaglin can likely get that up to at least 28mm rubber for those interested through the customization process.

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike

The bike remains rim brake only, getting a BSA bottom bracket, quick release dropouts & 130mm spacing. It can be built up with modern 11-speed groupsets from Shimano, 12-speed from Campagnolo & now SRAM, or even 13-speed from Rotor.

Portofino availability & pricing

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike

The Officina Battaglin Portofino is available now as either a frameset-only starting at $2750 / 2400€ (including the proprietary full carbon fork to match the headtube lug offset), or as a complete bike build. This complete customer’s bike is from a cyclist in Thailand, built up into a truly Italian road bike with Campagnolo Super Record 11-speed and Bora Ultra carbon wheels.

Battaglin Portofino modern oversized lugged steel road bike

Owner Sangsern Painutaiwat talks of his new bike’s ride, “How does the Portofino ride? I love every bit of it. It’s stiff when you put the power down, thanks to the oversize down tube. It’s springy and lively. It’s very comfortable and plush, but not sluggish. You can easily fit 25mm tires, and it feels fast as well.”

OfficinaBattaglin.com

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Gillis
Gillis
3 years ago

Frame doesn’t look too bad, from this distance. But that fork and those wheels are atrocious. Something like a Woundup would have been more aesthetically appropriate. And wheels with a more traditional lacing and fewer/smaller logos (but those appear to be the buyers choice in this case). The rest looks decent enough. Anyway, opinions are like sphincters…

K-Pop is dangerous to your health
K-Pop is dangerous to your health
3 years ago
Reply to  Gillis

I don’t think a Wound Up fork would really make this bike. Just because they have a polished fork crown to match the lugs, their fork blades are much thinner and wouldn’t match the OS nature of the overall aesthetic, IMHO. But you’re right, it’s all pretty subjective. My only criticism is the fork color should match the frame color, not the logo color.

pmurf
pmurf
3 years ago
Reply to  Gillis

I think the fork looks more ill-matched than it really is because of the outright color change. Keeping the brown base/amber accents on the fork would help “visual flow” there. Maybe. I don’t mind it though, but I’m a fan of modern forks on steel bikes – like you said, got my own sphincter 🙂

Veganpotter
Veganpotter
3 years ago
Reply to  Gillis

Those forks look terrible on anything that’s not a hardtail mountain bike. Even then, they don’t look good.

JAke
JAke
3 years ago

What about Richard Sachs UOS lugset with SaxMax oversize crown for UOS PegoRichie tubesets and fork legs? Those came out in 2012 and R. Sachs and other builders have been making frames with them since.

Brad Comis (@BradComis)
Reply to  JAke

These are larger than those tubes (much larger). “Double” or “Uber” oversized tube sets typically have a 35mm DT and a 36mm straight HT that only accommodates a 1-1/8″ straight steerer which isn’t a very common (or good) size for a carbon fork.

Raoul
3 years ago

so just like the Llewellyn lugs 35DT 36HT and 31 head tubes, and they’ve been about for a while

King County
King County
3 years ago

The lugged bits look ok, but overall, it does not appeal to me. Maybe it is the color tones. Also, the downtube cable routing seems a bit low to me. It is as if they did not want to interrupt the decals and the cable routing was a secondary thought. This is for the cycling-history-buff crowd.

wallymann
wallymann
3 years ago

great looking frame, but that doo-doo brown colorway has to go!!!

Dan Bare
Dan Bare
3 years ago

Hate to break the news to them but Tom Kellogg of Spectrum cycles has made a couple of lugged frames with an oversized headtube. Here is a pic of one of his latest, with what looks to be at least a 1 1/4″ headtube. https://www.flickr.com/photos/spectrumcycles/31898942427/

Morten Reippuert.dk
Morten Reippuert.dk
3 years ago
Reply to  Dan Bare

Kellog & Battaglin: bike porn

..Owned 5 Battaglin fabolous steel bikes before i got my Kellog designed Merlin Metal Works CR3/2.5 🙂 Never got rid of any of the Battaglins on purpuse i either crashed them or they where stolen. The CR is in my book still the finest Titanium frame out there despite beeing 12-13y old.

Greg
Greg
3 years ago

I especially like the head tube lug with the dropped down tube.
Actually I like pretty much everything about this bike.

Velo Kitty
Velo Kitty
3 years ago

Great looking bike. I like the look of the fork.
I’d worry about the chrome on the lugs rusting though.

Morten Reippuert
Morten Reippuert
3 years ago

remomeber my Battaglin with complete Columbus MAX oversize tubing. Lovely ride and fabolous geometry with BB drop 2mm lower than the average Colnago/Pinerello frame + 5mm extra on the chainstays.

(pretty much like my current Merlin Works with Tom Kellog geometry).

David Ellis
3 years ago

I think the design and colour is fantastic. Sorry to those who dislike it, but as an architect and designer, the modern colourway, juxtaposed with traditional chromed lugs and the fork that takes on the accent colour, is a perfect balance…somewhat like the contrast and balance of the solid/void used in well done architecture. This is one of the best executed pieces of bicycle design I have seen of late. I have a Power+ on order right now and I am having second thoughts…this is a masterpiece.

Tom
Tom
3 years ago

very cool looking bike. If I cared about the retro vibe I’d be all over one, the price isn’t bad considering what you get.

Toffee
Toffee
3 years ago

Problem is the protrusion on the back of the fork..like on a aero frame. And how it protused into the lug. And the down tube is dropped below the bottom of the head tube. Very bizarre

blahblahblah
blahblahblah
3 years ago
Reply to  Toffee

yeah it doesn’t look right, its takes away what makes lugs attractive

Blacksmith Cycle
3 years ago

We have our first frameset landing next week and I’m pretty stoked to see it in the flesh. Spirit OS with massive mugs could make for a pretty amazing ride!

Morten Reippuert.dk
Morten Reippuert.dk
3 years ago

+ Battaglin geometry.

Clif
Clif
3 years ago

The front tire seems way too close to the down tube. As if the fork needs to be longer or something. Throwing me for a loop there visually.

Gary
Gary
3 years ago

Front tyre is on backwards !
Details peoples, details !

Paul Mauger
Paul Mauger
3 years ago

Hope that isn’t a customers bike? With that many headset spacers, they missed the mark there!

miguel
miguel
3 years ago

I am waiting for a response from Battaglin of a commission I made some time ago.
I hope you will contact me shortly and inform me how everything is going.

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