Changes

Jump to: navigation, search

Caminetto

1,008 bytes added, 11 years ago
no edit summary
Based on an article courtesy of '''[http://www.italianpipemakers.com/inglese/Frameset-1gb.htm italianpipemakers.com''']
 
[[Image:Caminetto.jpg|left|thumb]]
Caminetto's history really started in 1959 when '''Guiseppe Ascorti''' ("Peppino" for his friends) from Cucciago was hired by '''Carlo Scotti''' and his brand '''[[Castello]]''' in nearby Cantu. Since it's foundation in 1947 Castello had substantially contributed to re-gained fame of Italian pipemaking. Talent and assiduity soon made Ascorti one of Scotti's most important pipemakers. A man he counted on for the future. But Ascorti had his own farreaching plan: he wanted to work as a self-employed pipemaker! After he had married in the early 60s this plan became more concret. His wife Paola had taken over her parent's small greengrocery and the additional income from the shop enabled him to buy toolery and machines little by little to furnish his own workshop. By the end of 1968 he was ready to go and he left Castello without a prolonged farewell. Furthermore Ascorti succeeded to persuade and wooe away young and highly talented pipemaker '''Luigi [[Radice]]''', who was his next door neighbor in Cucciago, to join him. Carlo Scotti, whom everyone otherwise knows as a perfect gentleman, is reported to have found some drastic expressions for what he thought about them...
Ascorti & Radice started to manufacture pipes now under their own administration. One of the first, who agreed to store their pipes was '''Gianni Davoli''', proprietor of a tobacco shop in Milan. The situation was perfect: two pipemakers in search of a distributor and a pipe merchant in search of a mainstay brand to market. Davoli - via friends and relations in the States - had made upgradable contacts with US pipe wholesalers and traders. He shipped some pipes across the pond for inspection and received proper feedback for the very high quality of the pipes. So he shortly after offered to be the sole distributor worldwide and Ascorti & Radice happily accepted.
[[Image:Caminetto_27.JPG|right|thumb|Impressive old production Caminetto Business with hoof]]
Then came the legendary evening Ascorti, Radice and Davoli gathered around the fireplace after a hard day's work enjoying their pipes, a glass of wine and humorous conversation. Davoli is said to be the one who associated the pipes with the fireplace or chimney which is "camino" in Italian. Hence "Caminetto", the diminutive (smaller) singular version of camino, was coined as the brand's name. And Ascorti, Radice and Davoli later became famous as "I tre Camini" - the three chimneys. Maybe, they had more than one glass of wine each, but it's not finally secured whether the distinctive moustache logo on the stem and the Caminetto slogan "La Pipa del Baffo" - "the pipe with the moustache" - was created the same night. In fact, Ascorti and Radice both wore impressing large moustaches and a pharmacist in the neighborhood had been kidding on them about that. (Davoli, for reasons of corporate identity, later wore a big moustache, too.)
[[Image:Caminetto_05.jpg|left|thumb]]
Ironically enough, the increasing demand drove Ascorti and Radice to the limits of their production soon. The brand had been introduced successfully in Germanyand some pipes could be placed in Italy, too. By the end of 1970 further hands were needed. The most important is '''Cesare Vigano''', who has worked for Caminetto / Ascorti for more than thirty years. Even Ascorti's elder son Roberto (current owner) helped with the stamping and shipping of the pipes when he was still a schoolboy. The most important employee is '''Cesare Vigano''', who has worked for Caminetto / Ascorti for more than thirty years. To bring about a sounder solution Davoli invested a considerable amount of money in modern pipemaking machinery and so he went from distributor to become co-owner of Caminetto. By 1973 he held the vast majority of the company's capital.
The boom, especially in the USA, continued strongly. Production increasing steadily 3,000, 5,000, 7,000 pipes per year were made placing Caminetto at the top of the US sales in their market segment. The entire thing really went to be a grotesque. The Tinderbox catalogue 1974 celebrates Gianni Davoli as "master pipe maker and designer" and "the sole creator of the Caminetto"! Not a single word mentions Ascorti or Radice!
[[Image:Gianni_1.jpg|left|thumb]][[Image:Gianni_2.jpg|right|thumb]]
btw. In addition Davoli sold a private label brand by Ascorti / Radice named '''Gianni''' for a couple of years in Italy.
 
Caminetto prospered fine throughout the 70s. Everyone was hard at work, sales went on well, but then all of a sudden things started brewing and disagreements occurred among the three principles.
 
The begin of the end.
----
Unfortunately, in 1980 the three partners find difficulty agreeing on certain points; Peppino, the founder, wants his son, Roberto, working with him; the other partners are afraid of a too strong alliance inside the company. So the dream comes to an end and the partnership is dissolved: the glorious name is torn between Ascorti and Davoli. Both would like total control, the first from love and passion, the second for prestige. Davoli knows that without Ascorti as creator, the name would lose the lustre in a very short time.
Peppino supports First Luigi Radice became more and more discontented with the way of pipe manufacturing which became visibly factory like as production was increased furthermore. Caminetto worked along shape numbers and there was no room for his sons, Roberto own creative pipemaking and Pierangelo, personal developement. He was also afraid that the swollen up production could not be conducive for quality in founding a new factory under the name long run. Radice started quarreling with Ascorti about the future course of the familyCaminetto. But they weren't able to find a solution and Radice, ASCORTIbeing an employed pipemaker rather than a partner, could not assert himself. Ascorti shared Radice's scruples about quality to a certain degree and he takes with him all the precious artisans whom he trained in the Caminetto workshopalso wanted to slack off a bit, but Davoli had gained almost total control. He hied Ascorti on."More"!
In 1984 the early passing The next controversy was about Roberto. The young man had visited a school of Peppino rouses arts and meanwhile also ended his service in the army. Roberto didn't want to go to an university. Instead he started helping in the workshop with pipe repairs and making his first few pipes. Now his father wanted to bring him in as a full-employed pipemaker. But Davoli refused strictly as he was afraid to loose influence to a strong alliance between father and Pierangelo son inside the desire company. Things got worse in 1979. Now the foreseen complaints about descending quality occurred. From the USA off all things. And if some reports are true Carlo Scotti impended to take legal actions because he felt that Caminetto had copied some successful Castello shapes far too exactly. Now Ascorti wanted to get rid of Davoli. But Davoli harshly made plain who was the top again real boss. I tre Camini disbanded. Luigi Radice had enough in December 1979 and went away. How serious the conflicts were is indicated by the factory fact that made famous their fatherhe had no perspective where or how to continue as a pipemaker when he decided to quit. Ascorti vs. Davoli continued for a few more months. The Ascorti family offered to buy the brand, but they couldn't afford it at the time. So Guiseppe Ascorti hastily furnished a new workshop and that then he left company which was essentially his own. How bitter! But the complete crew whom he had trained in the old Caminetto workshop followed him. And thus they were able to re-start making pipes within a perfect school of work few weeks in 1980. For merely three months they sold them under the name '''Sergio'''. Only 800 to 1,000 Sergio pipes were released. Then Giuseppe Ascorti and lifehis son Roberto founded a new company under their own last name. All - For the tradition and further history see '''[[Ascorti]]'''! Luigi Radice went through huge difficulties, but in the respect had already passed run of 1980 he also managed to establish himself as independent pipemaker. Gianni Davoli stayed behind, now owning a pipe workshop without any pipemaker. Strange enough, the younger Ascortiold Caminetto workshop caught fire and burned down to ashes.
After lengthy negotiations, Davoli, perfectly aware that only Peppino's sons could resurrect Caminetto, lets it go and sells his rights in the Caminetto partnership to Roberto and Pierangelo. Both, moved by the passion for the pipe and by the love for this world that their father transmitted since they were children, decide to affiliate the glorious Caminetto to the already consolidated Ascorti. They have been able to take it back to the top of the sales with a mundial(?) recognition from nostalgic collectors and others.
<gallery>
Image:Caminetto Pipe01.jpg|New Caminettos from new production Caminettosafter 1986
Image:Caminetto Pipe02.jpg|Pictures by Frank
Image:Caminetto Pipe03.jpg
Image:Caminetto Pipe04.jpg
</gallery>
 
The tradition continues through news and revivals which honor Peppino's work, carried on by Roberto with his wife Silvana and already transmitted to their sons, Maddalena and Tommaso. Both follow the passion of their father, even while still studying.
 
Selected and seasoned briar, fantasy and passion from Roberto and his faithful artisans, help to keep the Caminetto name and the name of its founder, Peppino, alive today.

Navigation menu

yummy goodstuff