i 'build' my frames. br?an 'builds' AND paints his frames.
others in the states do similarly. fwiw, when i was new
to all this, i wanted so much to believe that this was the
case overseas as well because all my role models were there.
but by 1979 while in italy for trip #1, i was astonished by
the CONTRAST between what i expected (and what br?an,
myself, and others here do...), that all i can say is the only
similarity is that the end-product is a bicycle frame. 'their'
approach to the manufacture of it, the methodology of it all,
the task assignments, the focus of each/every operation,
etcetera, as well as the notion that the product is (possibly)
sullied because it was subbed out or similar...everything about
what and how they do what they do is nearly 180 degrees
from what i (then) expected and what (i suspect) folks still
expect was the case. four-plus trips to italy later and countless
years have served to reinforce these feelings rather than suppress
them. one method is certainly no better than the other. but there
are at least two paths to take.