South Salem Cycleworks, 4071 Liberty Road South
Salem, OR 97302-5752
(503) 399-9848
Hours: Monday - Saturday 10 AM to 6 PM; Closed Sunday

Vintage Components - Modolo Brakes

On this page: Professional black brakeset | Professional red brakeset | Modolo Equipe brakeset

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The parts maker Modolo has been around a long time, Adamo Modolo having started the firm in 1952. The company is headquartered in Conegliano, in northeast Italy.

Modolo was originally dedicated to making parts for post-war Italian consumer bikes. In 1976 Adamo's son Domenico and his wife Serena began managing the firm. They took it in an entirely different direction. Instead of chasing the low-margin economic parts trade, Domenico, a capable industrial designer with a degree in mechanical engineering, began designing high-end parts.

The first product of that change, the Modolo Professional brake set, was an immediate hit. Shown at the 1977 Paris and Milan bike shows, the brakeset's superb design and workmanship made these brakes the go-to stopper for anyone not wanting to pay the big bucks for Campagnolo brakes.

In a short time, Modolo began offering that brakeset in different finishes at different prices. But all offered the same high performance.

Modolo Professional brakeset, black anodized - $350.00, new in the box.

This is the brakeset that set the cycling world on fire in 1977, the Modolo professional brake. This is an extraordinary set, new in the box. Just the way they came out of the factory in Conegliano in 1977 or 1978. We know these are very early production because they are nutted, not allen-keyed. Transformation to allen-key is simple.

It's all there, calipers, levers with anatomical hoods (in new condition) cables, instruction book, soft dust cloth, tools, top-tube brake cable clamps. The serial number stamped on the calipers is 05101.

Modolo professiona brakes

All the little pieces, like cable ferrules and tools are here

Modolo professional brakes

The factory packaging. The instruction manual and dusting cloth are shown.

Modolo Professional brakeset, red anodized. $199.00, used.

This brakeset is very early production, given its nutted rather than allen-keyed centerbolts. They were probably produced in 1977 or 1978. It has genuine Modolo anatomic leverhoods (probably the improved silicon hoods). The left one has a small cut on the outward-facing surface. The brakes are in terrific condition, though the red anodization has faded a bit. The brakeset comes with the better-stopping Modolo sinterized brake pads rather than the original rubber blocks.

Besides the notes above, we have found some other small flaws. The adjusting barrels, while fitting the brakeset perfectly, are not original. The rear caliper's quick-release lever is bent. That can be seen in the photo. And the wheel guides for the rear brake pads are missing.

Modolo Professional red anodized brake set

These brakes will really add a bright accent to that vintage pro bike. The cut in the left lever's hood can barely be seen.

Modolo professional red brakeset

These brakes have nutted center bolts, but we can convert them to allen-key upon request.

Modolo Equipe brakeset - $70.00

Probably made in early 1980s, but it's hard to date them exactly. The Equipe brakeset was much like the the then top-of-the-line "Master Pro" used by pro teams such as Renault, but with a little less hand finish work. The calipers are hard-grey anodized. They do feature another Modolo innovation, "synterized" brake pads. These pads do stop better in the rain than regular rubber blocks.

Modolo Equipe brakeset

The brakes are in excellent condtion. There is some rust on the chrome-plated parts. The rubber lever hoods, being more than thirty years old, have cracked. But Campagnolo-style aftermarket replacements, which fit perfectly, are available.


Another shot. The barely worn brake pads show the brakeset got very little use.