Avocation + Occupation + Relocation = Fascination

Avocation: It all started sometime during 1982, while living in Germany, when I wrote a specification sheet for my first  custom dream bike, based on a Diamond Back Turbo BMX frame and fork.

Occupation: By 1997, I had begun to earn paychecks by writing specification sheets for Diamondback road and mountain bicycles in California, some of which became dream bikes for other cycling enthusiasts.

Relocation: After moving to Switzerland in 2008, I grew fascinated with Ferraroli, a manufacturer who built incredible road and mountain bicycles here during the formative period in which my avocation for cycling gradually became my occupation: between 1982 and 1997.

Fascination: Now, in 2015, I am beginning this blog to share knowledge of, and love for, these wonderful Swiss Bikes with fellow vintage, classic, retro and cult bicycle enthusiasts. I trust that through exploring these pages, you will also develop a fascination for Ferraroli.


10 thoughts on “Avocation + Occupation + Relocation = Fascination

  1. Hi, also have a fascination for les Ferraroli’s. Question. Do you know when Alain made the first VTT? I have a Ferraroli from 87′ (I think) based on the parts that were present on the bike. Shimano AT50 brakes and levers. Sakae oval chainset, Bullmoose bars. Not to long ago, I bumped into another ferraroli, older looking with obscure parts. Which made me wonder…


    1. Hello JUJU,

      Since their sequential serial numbers didn’t include a year code yet in the 1980s, it’s difficult to pin down exactly when the first Ferraroli VTT was made, just when it was made relative to the others.

      It’s well-documented that Ferraroli built the initial fifty framesets for Butch Gaudy’s MTB Cycletech brand in 1984.

      I repaired and restored serial #50 of this series (but not likely Ferraroli #50, which should have been made years before), which now belongs in a friend’s private collection. It can be seen online at http://www.oldschoolracing.ch .

      It’s not clear to me if Ferraroli had built any VTTs under their own brand first, or if Butch’s project planted the seed for what followed.

      Thanks for the question, which I’ll add to my long list to ask Alain, if/when I meet him.

      And please, share pictures of the older VTT with obscure parts with me, if you can.

      Meilleures salutations,


  2. Hello,
    I just recently got my hands on a Ferraroli road bike, by chance as I was going through the stuff in my basement. As the bike was equipped with really nice parts and it was from a Swiss brand, I did some more research and I stumbled across your blog. You seem to be truly fascinated by the brand and very knowledgeable, so I was wondering wether you could tell me a bit more about my bike as I did not find this model in the catalogs listed on your site.
    Here are the specs:
    – Model name: Hosteen (made in Japan from what I gathered)
    – Blue steel frame with white paint splashes
    – Campagnolo Veloce whole group
    – Nitto Stem
    – Serial nb: D30927050
    – Year: 1992 ?
    – Mavic rims

    Thank you,



    1. Bonjour Jérôme,
      Thanks for reaching out about your Ferraroli.
      Hosteen was a sub-brand of Ferraroli’s from the early-to-mid 90s. Somewhere in my records, I have a newspaper article describing the details. I’ll try to post it relatively soon.
      I’ve never seen one of the Hosteen road bikes in person; only the Tomahawk mountain bike. From your description, the road bike model was of a significantly higher level.
      Perhaps you could share pictures with me, to be included in the post?

      Meilleures salutations,


      1. Bonjour Terrance,
        Thanks for your quick answer, I have taken pictures from my bike and I would be happy to share them with you. Do you have an email address that I can send them to? I don’t seem to be able to upload them on your site. Also I would be interested in reading that newspaper article.




      2. Bonjour Terrance,
        I sent you an email with the pictures of my bike, did you receive it?
        Meilleures salutations,


  3. Hello Terrance,
    I have an oldschool MTB, bought in 1985 in Germany, which looks very similar to a Ferraroli Anapurna.
    But it wasn’t sold under the name Ferraroli. On the frame it just says “Mountain Bike”.
    Is there a way to find out wether or not this ist a Ferraroli?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Stephan,

      Probably the first thing to check is the serial number stamped into the frame’s bottom bracket shell. If the serial number has more than four digits, or letters instead of numbers, it’s probably not a Ferraroli.

      Beyond that, if you can share pictures, I’ll compare the details with others I’ve owned and seen. malone_tk@yahoo.com



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