As I saw it I had two options:
1) Splurge and get the real deal
- PROS: Authentic, accurate, detailed, thin to apply before a final clearcoat
- CONS: Not forgiving (due to fragility from being a thin film), requires significant scrilla
2) Get a vinyl decal recreation
- PROS: Forgiving, cheap as a date night at In-N-Out Burger, many size options
- CONS: Less detailed graphics, potentially as lame as a date night at In-N-Out Burger (although Animal-Style never disappoints), Requires multi-layered painting using the decals as a negative stencil
I decided to go with a combination of the two - vinyl recreation templates for the down tube and a thin-film decal for the head tube badge. It turned out quite nicely, but did require a fairly involved stepwise painting process.
In my decal search, I also sent a request to a general information e-mail address on Bianchi's "Contattaci" web page. I gave the description of the bike, era of manufacture, and even a photo of its original state. I heard nothing back, so I assumed that I was on my own. Well, about 6 weeks later, I received an envelope from Italy... Inside was a stapled plastic bag filled with some Bianchi stickers that I've never seen before:
These were stickers (not decals) and the head tube badge was quite thick (2-3mm). They also came with some crazy wavy graphics that look pretty awkward. I'm not sure what I'll use these for since the project is finished. I guess I could get a cheap Huffy from Craigslist, slap on some stickers, and pawn it off on an unsuspecting newbie. However, I have a soul (and steadfast velo-ethics to boot). I could search for another Bianchi in need of a new life, but a set of free stickers is a terrible justification to purchase another bike (...maybe). So, if any of you out there are interested and have a worthy cause (no Huffy re-badging), e-mail me at: dylan (at) nippleworks.com.
Finally, I would like to say that even though it took awhile, Bianchi responded to my inquiry and gave me some free loot. I appreciate any company that will do that for a customer 7000 miles away.