Whenever we feel the desire for a short trip abroad, Italy is the first destination that comes to our minds.
People are charming, the country is flooded with antiquities and attractive places that take you back in history, while at the same time it is the birthplace of high automotive technology and unsurpassed design in general.
Considering these, we decided to spend Easter in Trieste.
We have never been in Trieste before, but having heard a lot, we were curious to find out more. Trieste was the fourth largest city of the Austro-Hungarian Empire (after Vienna, Budapest, and Prague and was a seaside Vienna and a fluid borderland where Italian, Slavic, Jewish, Germanic and Greek culture intermingled, it emerged as an important hub for commerce and arts, while the flourishing Greek community greatly contributed to the glamour of the city. The seafront view and the famous picturesque Piazza dell’Unita, would definitely look poorer if the fabulous palazzo Carciotti & the palazzo Stratti were not erected by these wealthy men of Greek origin. Trieste became part of the Italian nation just in 1954, having undergone severe population exterminations starting from the rise of fascism, until well after the Second World, as it was an important area of the struggle between the Eastern and Western blocs.
Through my blog, I come in contact with quite a few people, but this was the first time I arranged a meeting in person.
It was as if Danilo & his wife Doris were friends of ours since many years. The fact that we share common interests, raised the barriers of speaking different languages, and allowed us to enjoy their great hospitality, Danilo’s insatiable mechanical/ electronics projects focused on their 2 well pampered X1/9s, Doris tasty cooking and a wonderful visit to the nearby historic site of the Roman Aquileia, after stopping at the Miramare castle.
Danilo, wishing to prepare his ideal X1/9 versions, goes to extreme modifications, assembling engines and gearboxes, chosing the best possible components the Gruppo has to offer (and in many cases rectifying inherent design weaknesses)- in this last project I saw, the internals of Fiat Tipo/Tempra, doing also of course all proper weight reduction & balancing and upgrading like, wilder camshafts, extra carburation and free flow exhaust systems, topping these with plenty of accurate electronic modifications, like fuel measuring and programmable CDI ignition-all of his own design and construction (after all electronics is his major field)!
In a very modest way, Danilo tried to underrate his work, so he wrote to me:
My tuned engine does not have anything particularly innovative: many manuals contain much higher levels of preparation.
My CDI + static programmable advance, is a project of mine that dates back some 30 years ago: at present it is not very interesting …
Perhaps, noteworthy, may be the Tipo/Tempra gears transfer into the X1/9: but those who are not familiar with these
gearboxes, cannot appreciate the usefulness of such a change.
I, having followed his laborious and deeply knowledgable projects, I will include some photos, while I’m sure Danilo will not turn down technical requests any of you may have concerning projects similar to his… Impossible to present everything I have seen, but you have to understand that even the absence of a spare part cannot stop our man from achieving his goal!
Side windows rebuilt
And of course, windsurfing is great in Trieste as you can see from this photo just in front of the Greek church!