Editor’s note: This week VeloNews is publishing excerpts from the new book,Italian Racing Bicycles: The People, The Products, The Passion.
Today, specialization in manufacturing seems normal. In the early days of the bicycle, however, builders in Italy had only a limited number of suppliers to choose among and often had to make parts or components themselves. It was precisely for this reason that Universal played such a decisive role in the panorama of the history of bicycle manufacturing in Italy. Created in 1919, Universal was the first Italian maker of brakes.