Sante Pogliaghi was only 11 years old when he entered the workshop of his uncle Brambilla, a framebuilder well know in Milan since the 20's. In 1947 he opened his own shop in Milan. It had two windows facing viale Elvezia, not far away from the Arena stadium.
He always built special bespoke frames for competitions. The catalogue of Pogliaghi Italcorse offered four track models: sprint, pursuit, stayer and tandem, and two road models: road race and time trial.
The international stage of the Vigorelli velodrome was not far away from the shop and his specialty became the track competition tandem, for which he used oversize tubing and special lugs which he built himself.
He built few frames per year. Around one hundred at the beginning of the activity up to one thousand in the best years, when six builders were working in his workshop.
Each builder worked on a frame from start to finish. He started by joining the seat tube to the bottom bracket and then the seat tube to the top tube. Then he attached the down tube to the bottom bracket and finished the main triangle by attaching the head tube.
Sante Pogliaghi was a true craftsman. He kept angles and measures in mind and he built by sight. He didn't need any jig to build a frame accurately. He employed a frame jig only when he was building a lot of frames of the same dimensions.
He designed frames that matched perfectly the needs of the riders and of the race. His fame grew and the waiting list to have one of his frames got longer and longer.
He supplied frames to Sercu and Merckx, and to the italians Beghetto, Faggin, Pettenella, Rossi, among the others. The labels changed depending on the sponsor but on the seat lug you could always find his unmistakable mark, PSM: Pogliaghi Sante Milano.
In 1983 Sante Pogliaghi died. The framebuilding shop was closed. The brand was sold and it changed a couple of owners. For a while you could still get a new frame with the Pogliaghi label. But it was only a brand without its soul.
(source: text and drawing by Cicli Su Carta)
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