(From 1996)

Hey, if you ride Campagnolo, it's obvious--it's much, much better than ShimaNO! But have you ever considered all of the many things that make Campy better? Well, we have, and we've listed a few below:


ShimaNO: Built by faceless robots made of steel recycled from old Subarus. Workers spend their lunch hours reading thick, lurid graphic novels.

Campagnolo: Built by warm, loveable Italian robots made of steel recycled from old Columbus racing framesets. Workers spend their lunch hours reading classic Italian fiction, "La Gazetta Dello Sport," and Bici Sport.


ShimaNO: Machine-packed by automated equipment.

Campagnolo: Lovingly packed by beautiful young Italian girls wearing white cotton gloves. Boxes made from recycled copies of "La Gazetta Dello Sport"

Gruppo Names

ShimaNO: Dull, unimaginative names, mostly based on numbers (105, 600, etc.)

Campagnolo: Exciting, romantic names based on Italian words and figures from mythology (Chorus, Athena, Veloce, etc.)

Component Finish

ShimaNO: Paint and epoxy applied by automated machinery.

Campagnolo: Highly polished by handsome Italian workers who call their mothers every week.

Brake/Shift Lever Cable Routing

Claudio's Handlebars ShimaNO: Big, ugly cables hanging out all over the place. Aesthetic and aerodynamic nightmare.

Campagnolo: Clean, aero routing places cables under the handlebar tape, just like in the photo at right (those are Claudio Chiapucci's hands grasping the bars!).

Logical Integrated Shift/Brake Levers

ShimaNO: Upshift and downshift levers are in the same place, reach for an upshift, and you could just as easily downshift!

Campagnolo: Upshift and downshift controls are intelligently separated. No confusion here, just great shifting! Ergopower also allows you to "sweep" from the largest to smallest cog in one motion! ShimaNO doesn't!

Interchangeable Parts

ShimaNO: Amost nothing interchanges. Dura-Ace can't be mixed with Ultregra, road won't mix with off-road, last year's stuff won't fit this year's components. Don't even think of trying to fix anything, because even ShimaNO can't keep track of all the spare parts you'd need.

Campagnolo: Mix and match to your heart's content. Record's cogs match Chorus, which matches everything else in the entire component line! Want to use Athena shifters on your Chorus bike? Go ahead, it works! Spare parts galore, too, should anything ever break! (Although it almost never does!)

Who Uses It

ShimaNO: Not used by a Tour de France winner in memory.

Campagnolo: Used by Miguel Indurain in five successive Tour de France victories! 26 of the last 30 Tours have been won on Campagnolo! Winners in the Giro and the Olympics use Campy, too!

History and Tradition!

ShimaNO: Who the heck is Mr. ShimaNO? A great industrialist, perhaps, but a cyclist?

Campagnolo: Tullio Campagnolo was a great Italian cyclist before he began inventing the technology that created the modern bicycle! We've provided a brief overview of Campagnolo history with our own Unofficial History.

Campy's Mountain Bike Gruppos

Reader (and Campy fan) Tim Laflin sent us an excellent letter outlining just a few of the many ways in which Campy's off-road equipment runs roughshod over the "sheepish" stuff spewed out of ShimaNO's factory. We liked it so much, we gave Tim his own page! Check it out!

Need we say more?

Well, listen to what Bicycling magazine had to say about ShimaNO and Campagnolo in their May 1995 issue:

"The way I see it, Ergopower shifting is designed for big, meaty fingers in the heat of battle. Namby-pamby mineral-water sippers should stick to dainty ShimaNO STI. Of course, STI will be wearing out just as Ergopower is breaking in, but it's up to you."

Need more proof? How about famed framebuilder Richard Sachs, quoted in the May '95 issue of Road Bike Action magazine:

"[Campagnolo] is all I use. I'm making a certain type of high-quality frame and it makes no sense to put anything else on except for Campagnolo. It goes back to the ‘70s when it was the only group to use, and other than some occasional faux pas, I believe they are unparalleled in the components they offer, and it works best for my bikes."

Yes, Richard, you're right, except that Campagnolo will work best for everybody's bike!

Back to Campy Only

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