Olimpica Lever and History - Page 8

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Seacoffee (original poster)

#71: Post by Seacoffee (original poster) »

Yes we could do all these things. The challenge is to uncover how the machine was set up from the factory when it was born

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#72: Post by pootoogoo »

Now for the group.

The 1952 patent posted by Holger is very close to the group mechanism, but with a more complex conception. The inventor's name is a bit mixed-up : it says "Piconcelli" on the first page of the patent, "Piponcelli" on the drawing... and it is recorded as "Pincincelli" on the patent database.

It mentions that the inventor is Italian, leaving in Valencia, Avenida José Antonio, 64 (an apartment block, nowadays situated Av. del Regne de València, 64, as lots of street names changed in Spain after the Franco era).
There are no surname such as "Pincincelli" or "Piponcelli" in Italy, so the right name is certainly "Alberto Piconcelli".

The record says that there was a priority for this patent deposited first in Italy, September 4th, 1951. Which makes this patent one of the very first deposited for a lever group after Gaggia's patent.

There is no other information that can be found about him (no other patent, no other mention in any other source)... except that it is apparently a name originating from the Toscana region and that he certainly emigrated to Spain in 1952.

More interesting is the "other guy", because there is an other Spanish patent which is an addition to the Piconcelli patent, deposited shortly after, in 1953.

Now, this patent is the one that best describes the Olimpica lever mechanism (no large junction between the two moving parts, simpler design).

This patent is under the name of Don Juan Campo Bagatin Zampolli, also an Italian citizen, also living in Valencia, at the same address as Alberto Piconcelli !

He has another patent recorded in 1953, for a new type of "curler" ("Bigoudi"... try to find the link with a lever :D ).

Then his name appears on other, more related, records:

In 1956, for the brand name "Helados Italianos" for his two Ice-cream shops in Alicante (near Valencia).

And in 1957, for the exploitation license of the first patent (the one from Piconcelli).

So he is the guy who dealt with José Girbau Rubinat for the use of this peculiar lever mechanism.

Interestingly enough, the name "Campo Bagatin" originate from the Veneto region, and "Zampolli" from the northern regions of Italy (Lombardia and Veneto). There are Campo-Bagatin Ice-Cream shops (Eiscafe) in Germany, near Cologne (Sindorf-Kerpen, Horrem-Kerpen and Frechen-Bachem), founded by the "Campo-Bagatin" family from Zoldo Alto (Veneto region) in 1952... and a famous Ice-cream shop in Trieste, called "Gelateria Zampolli". This shop already existed in 1940, and was owned by "Giovanni Zampolli" (viale Venti Settembre 25, very close to the actual Gelateria Zampolli).

«It runs in the family», as we say.

Knowing that in Spain the surname are composed by the first name of the father, followed by the first name of the mother, and that "Giovanni" can be translated by "Juan" in Spanish, it is pretty sure that Juan Campo Bagatin Zampolli was a grand-son of Giovanni Zampolli and the son of a Campo Bagatin boy, the two "gelato" families from the Venice region. His parents certainly emigrated to Spain during the 30s.

The missing link is the one between Piconcelli and the Venice region... but let's mention that the Romanut brother's group, the one having a very close mechanism but using two (or four) external springs, appeared in the same region (Udine), around the same years (1950-1951).

Maybe our German friends and Trieste friend can continue the investigation, undercover, onsite. :wink:

Seacoffee (original poster)

#73: Post by Seacoffee (original poster) »

Wow Sebastien you are a Super Sleuth. Absolutely great piecing together of such valuable information. Puts this little machine into context.

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#74: Post by pootoogoo »

My pleasure. :wink:


#75: Post by Sansibar99 »

Bravo, Sebastien, Bravo! This is some deeeeep sh** :mrgreen:
LMWDP #422


#76: Post by IMAWriter »

doubleOsoul wrote:Oh snap! That is an amazing find. I would trade a lot of equipment for that lever. :shock:
You would trade a body part for it! haha
What a little brute that machine is, eh?


#77: Post by LAPOTENZA »

I bought today!

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#78: Post by redbone »

That's a fantastic looking Olimpica machine.

Congratulations and keep us up to date with new pics and progress.
Between order and chaos there is espresso.
Semper discens.

LMWDP #549


#79: Post by turriga »

LAPOTENZA wrote:I bought today!

Poor Henk! :D

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#80: Post by arcus »

LAPOTENZA, I inquired about that one as it looks so nice. Unfortunately, a lot of interest made it a pricey little gem.