Introducing a new feature dedicated to the art and practice of framebuilding: Heart of Metal.
Through an interview that moves between technical and emotional language we will tell the story of how the frame has been constructed and what makes it special.
Columbus sits down with Pietro Pietricola and Cristina Wurdig from Officina Pegoretti to discuss their “just don’t call it a gravel” cyclocross frame, the Duende, a lesser known part of their catalogue that gives a special form to Columbus’ Zona tubeset…
Ciao Cristina, ciao Pietro, what are we here to talk about today?
We want to talk to you a little about Duende, the model we produce that is perhaps closest to a “traditional” racing frame but which is also orderable as a CX (or road, or track…) bike for cyclocross riders or for cyclists looking for an all-road bike with ample tyre clearance. Our Duende CX is well-known in the States but much less so, which is why we thought it was interesting to talk about it today! The Duende is a frame which struggles to fit into ordinary categories, it’s versatile. Or better yet: disrespectful! This is perhaps the real nature of our Duende. And please don’t call it a gravel!
It’s interesting that in a cycling world that talks ever more about gravel you so stringently insist that the Duende is not a gravel bike. Why?
Pegoretti does not do gravel. The identity of our brand is firmly rooted in the road bike, those are our origins. The Duende also began its life as a road frame, made from Zona, your most versatile tubeset… versatile like the Duende’s soul! The Duende is in fact a playful frame which can morph from its standard road version into a cyclocross or track frame according to the client’s request. And in some way it is also the simplicity of the Zona tubeset that allows to move from one configuration of frame to the other.
Pietro, you weld the frame; what are the technical characteristics of the Duende? How is it constructed? With what kind of welds?
The Duende is a TIG-welded frame, made as we said from Zona, your “all-purpose, hi-resistance” seamless tubes made from 25CroMo4. Our specific version of the tubeset has been customized according to our needs. In particularly the tapered seat and chainstays which you make for us and which have become the signature of the frame are easy to work with, thanks to the elevated mechanical characteristics of the steel, which are also maintained during welding. The same characteristics are extremely beneficial when welding accessories such as cantilever mounts for the CX version of the frame. Our dropouts on the other hand are brazed: this is a choice made from both technical and aesthetic reasons and determines the personality and recognizability of the frame as much as the stays!
What kind of customer orders a Duende CX?
An intelligent client! Some order it for pure cyclocross racing, others who choose it for the greater wheel clearance other for greater comfort.
Who does what at Officina Dario Pegoretti?
Everybody does everything! The versatile spirit of the Duende doesn’t just give a form to Zona tubing, it gives form to the entire company.