C4, since 1986Technology and Passion

“Trying to know the real reasons has always deeply fascinated me. By knowing the reasons you can overcome limits, if you don’t, it’s because you didn’t know them. Black or white. On-off “.  Marco Bonfanti


Nicoletta and Marco Bonfanti founded C4. Brainchild of a winning combination between freedom and innovation, C4 has pursued its technical, functional and design oriented vision, defining new guidelines for the technical skills of its products.
Bicycle frames and forks were metal tubing structures. After seven years’ tests and failures Marco Bonfanti designs and creates AERO, a one piece carbon frame and fork structure. Perfect for time trials, with no seat tube, it can be purchased in three different sizes and its seat angle is adjustable. The fork has a divergent wing section to minimize air resistance. This innovative carbon molding process, known as NJC ( No Joint Construction ) allows hollow and seamless composite complex structures to be easily manufactured. Tubular section structures with internal reinforcement brace are available as well. NJC system will be at the basis of the creation of C4 future products.


Squadra Corse Bianchi (Bianchi racing team) chooses AERO frame and fork for May 1987 Giro d'Italia’s several time trials ( Bianchi - C4 project ). Supercorsa frames and forks are created as well as MTB Luna model, the first with no seat tube provided.


With regards to frames, NJC manufacturing technique increases thanks to the assembly co-gluing of metal parts directly in the carbon body-in-white. No one had ever done that before. Thanks to this technique MTB Terra and Marte frames and forks were manufactured. Marte, for example, is a single piece monocoque 60% sandwich laminated product.
Because of his passion for diving, Marco Bonfanti creates the first fins made in carbon fiber. Such invention represents a real jump into the future and a deep change in the world of free diving. Fin dimensions are standard for the time, 72cm long, 22cm large and a 17° angle, but the use of fibers is totally new: layers are created in order to obtain a parabolic curve with an outstanding reactivity level.


At the beginning of the 90s a tight cooperation between the company and a young unknown athlete begins with the objective of discovering the limits of carbon fiber fins. This athlete, who soon becomes very popular, is Umberto Pellizzari. Pellizzari, during his outstanding and very long sports career, will always use C4 carbon fiber fin blades for all his World Records in constant ballast.


At the Spearfishing World Championship in Palma de Mallorca, C4 supports four athletes: Mazzarri, Riolo and Bellani, members of the Italian National Team, and Salvatori, a French athlete. They all dominate in the competition, finishing in 1st, 2nd, 4th and 5th position. Renzo Mazzarri, after a very contested race in terrible weather conditions, wins his 3rd world title. No other athlete in the competition uses carbon fiber blades as, at this time, C4 is the sole manufacturer of this product. A few years later Renzo Mazzarri and Riccardo Molteni will become great friends and spearfishing mates. A combination that will rise on the podium several times in various world competitions.


This is the time of AIR-ONE and JOKER frames and forks drawing new streamlined shapes harmonizing the load distribution. JOKER frame has a special cantilever seat with a brand new design. The AIR-ONE design introduces a partial seat tube wing section.
Constant profile water rails are created for scuba diving fins, but they are then used for any kind of fin, as nowadays commonly occurs.
The Road Cycling world Championship is organized in Oslo. The Swiss national team, ‘SUISSE CYCLING TEAM’ finishes in 3rd position in the 100Km team trial race, using C4 frames and forks.


C4 is 10 years old. Thanks to an optimized project, CLASS is the first one kilo series frame. In 1999 the CLASS 99 will weigh only 916 g.


FALCON blades are produced in this very year. Falcon baldes are narrower, longer, with a wider angle and a wider distance between the foot and the blade. They totally change the divers’ technical approach. The new dimensions are 76x19 cm.


Unexpectedly, at the Eudi Show in Bologna, C4 presents Monoscocca, the world’s first total carbon fiber double band spear gun, manufactured in a unique monocoque frame.
Fin blades become "flat" with a 20° angle, making backward and forward movements more fluid, optimizing blades flexibility.


Presented in January, Vyrus, is the first monocoque with seat integrated frame and a special seat tube position and angle. This allows the seat adjustment without modifying proportions of the seat and the handlebar.
In freediving, Martin Stepanek’s reaches -93mt in constant ballast using standard FALCON fins. This is the new World Record for the bi-fins, unbeaten till now.


Years of research applied to fluid dynamics studies lead to the creation of the new model fin "Flap". This new model optimizes the movements of fluids on the blade, minimizing harmful vortexes in the sections where the speed of water is the highest. Its special shape prevents contacts with shallow waters, therefore having less impact on the sea floor, avoiding the uneven movements usually required by spearfishing. Blades angle is 22°.


C4 is twenty years old. Fins revolution’s name is Mustang. Mustang fins feature a new criteria never used before. The new blades inclined at 24°, paired with C4 anatomical and preformed footpockets inclined at 3°, bring the total inclination between the foot and the blade at 27°. The footpockets are also adjustable and feature a left and right shoe. To optimise energy consumption, Mustang fins allow to apply force on the blade from underneath the metatarsus, the ideal point of strength. They don’t have energy absorbing spars, they feature parabolic curve water rails and the flap terminal is easily removable.
Mr.Carbon is a new entry in the speargun family featuring a brand new design. Mr.Carbon has a streamlined front position for a better grip and a kit for adaptation of the handle. Natalia Bonfanti is appointed marketing and communication manager and, thanks to her great contribution, C4 reaches world fame.


Similar to Mustang blades, but manufactured with less expensive materials, the first plastic Wahoo fin blades are produced. Wahoo fins feature hydrodynamic overmolded water rails.


Carbon fiber becomes stiffer, and T700 fibers innovate the manufacturing of all C4 products, thus increasing by 40% the common applied standards. Water rails become VGR (Variable Geometry Rails ) adapting their shapes to water speed and volumes for each blade section. Urukay, the new speargun, feature an advanced design and, as in any creation, its materials are only a part of the performance, the real difference is made by how they are used.


SKORPIOsub brand - Natalia Bonfanti’s brainchild – is created to offer existing solutions at competitive prices. C4 introduces the first monofin model: the Monoflap VGR, which is, as usual, out of the ordinary. The Joker 410, a modular carbon monocoque speargun, is introduced. Its special design combines the technique of the single shell structure made from 100% carbon fiber with the creation of several measurements through the regulation of a mobile part.


Mr. Iron speargun, Mr. Carbon’s steel version, is added to the catalogue. Mustang3 fin blades mark the third evolution of the Mustang project born in 2006, featuring new flaps, new dimensions and new D.P.C (Double Parabolic Curve) blades. The Mustang3 optimize curving of the blades and the quantity of water processed in combination with the EVO water rails and according to the availability of strength produced by the combination of our muscles with articulations.


The new Graphite speargun is pure harmony. Designed with the exclusive Low Friction Shaft-Slider system it features a perfect combination of elegant shape and functionality. To reduce the recoil, the trigger mechanism is positioned behind the hand. These features make the Graphite extremely maneuverable and accurate.


Mr.Carbon spearguns feature the shaft slider system.


Blade fins carbon fiber is constantly evolving. The new carbon fiber with large squares of over 12 mm increases blades resistance and reduces energy absorption thanks to fiber interlacing. The 729 MUSTANG are the fourth evolution of the Mustang project born in 2006. The new inclination of the blades is 29° (+3°shoe). The 729 MUSTANG are equipped with shaped water rails, and with progressive deformation EVO, patented by C4. EVO water rails are fitted with a new variable profile that channels water on the blades in the best possible way. The new 729RED Falcon and 729BLUE Flap blade fins are introduced. They feature a 29° inclination angle with increased dimensions and they stand as the evolution of previous models.


Martin Stepanek, one of the greatest free divers in the world, begins his direct cooperation with C4. After a long period of tests, the first Martin Stepanek’s blades are produced, combining all criteria provided by Martin with C4’s over 30 year manufacturing skills. The new design features increased mechanical efficiency, lower friction, higher rigidity and mass reducing recoil and increasing maneuverability and accuracy.


Mustang HT blade fins, the fifth evolution of the original project, manufactured in a new type of “Big Square” carbon fiber, are introduced. This special "BigSquare” carbon fiber, with squares of 2,5cm, optimizes a more compact composite fiber, with much lower crisscrossing of the strands for high elastic return, reducing energy dispersion. All "BigSquare" blades offer a mechanical reaction never seen before, a higher stiffness capacity thus reducing physical efforts.


C4 celebrates its 30 years’ life and in March, at the Eudi Show diving fair, the new product launched is the shiny “300” fin footpocket. Thanks to a deep restyling of the traditional project and by using advanced materials, 300 footpockets combine small dimensions, a surprisingly low weight, and an extremely high mechanical and hydrodynamic efficiency. 300 footpockets represent the future common ground for new extra light fin models.
The first fin models to use 300 footpockets are: REDFOX (deep free diving fishing ) INDIAN ( free diving fishing ) and VOLARE ( pure free diving ).


A new and important era for C4 begins. The Ciceri family, who have previously owned the company Omersub and have been absent from the market for five years, return to the diving industry by acquiring the majority of shares of C4 Srl.
In the same year, C4 introduces a catalogue filled with new products such as: the new footpocket 400, a mask, a snorkel, belts and bags.


New families of products are introduced on catalogue: flashlights, knives, floats, lead weights and the first C4 wetsuit.
During the same year, C4 introduces two major new products: the speargun Gladius and the new fins TANK T34 and PERSHING, both featuring an overmoulded thermorubber profile protecting the tip of the blades.