Are there any American made bikes?



LDB

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Jul 18, 2010
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Are there any bikes made in America and if so that don't cost a fortune? Is there an online resource to identify them? I know there are still brand names but at least a lot of their stuff is outsourced. In case there's nothing reasonable what sources are good, i.e. Japan, Taiwan etc.? I'd like to buy American company American made but if that's out of reach then American company best source. Thanks for any and all advice.
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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LDB said:
Are there any bikes made in America and if so that don't cost a fortune? Is there an online resource to identify them? I know there are still names but at least a lot of their stuff is outsourced. In case there's nothing reasonable what sources are good, i.e. Japan, Taiwan etc.? I'd like to buy American company American made but if that's out of reach then American company best source. Thanks for any and all advice.
What sources are good? Sources that have been given well defined construction instructions and have sufficient production skill and oversight are good sources. Those sources can be in Indiana, Italy, Taiwan, or even (the gods forbid!) China. Likewise sh!t can come out of those countries, including (the gods forbid!) America. A simple google search will show that there are many custom frame builders in the US, as well as larger scale manufacturers. No component groups are actually made in the US, but that doesn't mean anything. No matter where they come from Campagnolo, Shimano, and SRAM are good. Even Microshift does pretty damned well. This is a topic that has been beaten into the ground over 5+ years. In fact it's the dead horse that is continually resurrected so that it can be beaten again. As a result there is far from a shortage of links on the web discussing this and naming companies that manufacture bike stuff in the US.
 

CAMPYBOB

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Sep 12, 2005
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Trek, Scott and Cannodale still build some high-end models here. Waterford and a handful of custom stee, alumiminum and carbon builders still crank out some wonderfuls frames that are 'Made in America' (even if the tubeset may be drawn in Italy, England or some other offshore country.

American labor means American pricing, as a rule...which means a fairly hefty price when compared to Asian rim-produced items.

Japan and Taiwan tend to produce high quality products. At any given price point the quality is pretty darn good to excellent. Chinese good are, IMO, a bit more sporadic in QA, but can be as good as anything else on the market. Do your homework and some of the Chinese stuff will put a smile on your face.

What little the Europeans still do without outsourcing is good stuff, but they have followed the rest of the planet in search of cheap labor. The 'Italian' name brand 2011 rocketship bike I bought last fall and bought a 2012 version of this spring never spent a day in Italy. The mold fabrication, layup schedule and product development was farmed out to a Taiwanese outfit. They, in turn, outsourced the actual layup, molding and autoclaving of the frame...right down to sanding, painting, decal application and clearcoat...to a mainland China firm. The frameset is drop-shipped directly to the American buyers that even get to spec out custom paint jobs for the States.

The labor is three steps removed from the company name quality control folks that have the decal on the d-tube. You do like I do, read the reviews, pays your money and takes your chances. So far, they guys in China thru enough fake carbon and fiberglass at it to keep it together for a few thousand miles.

Like you, OP. I prefer USA quality and at least a good company behind a good product. Ever since Schwinn cashed out...those days are hard to come by! Try a top-of-the-line Madone from Trek. If I weren't racing them (and busting them), I'ld be on a big dollar American ride myself.
 

oldbobcat

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Aug 31, 2003
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Scott is a Swiss corporation. All Scott and Cannondale frame production is in Asia now. Scott proudly maintains that its Asian builders are the most closely supervised and tested in the industry. Quality issues that were reported with US-made high-end Cannondales largely disappeared when production was outsourced to a Taiwanese fabricator.

Last I heard, Trek Madones and Domanes at the 6 level and above are still made in the US. The 5s are made in Taiwan.
 

CAMPYBOB

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Oldbobcat is correct. Cannondale moved theit highend models to Taiwan in 2010 and the lower models to Vietnam.

Final assembly is still performed in Bedford, Pennsylvania. AFA quality goes, a friend just cracked his at the seatstay cluster. Cannondale replaced it under warranty.

Worksman, Seven, Waterford, Calfee, Klein, Serotta, Merlin, Aegis, etc. may still be made in the U.S.A. or may be out-of-business, bought out, sold out, merged or defunct. I'm not certain, but I don't think Murray of Ohio builds anything here these days. English and Asain owners bought it...or what was left of it.

Huffman/Huffy is long gone. Roadmaster is gone. The victims of union labor, poor management and cheap foreign labor.
 

alfeng

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Jul 23, 2005
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Consider buying a GUNNAR ... relatively affordable.

Good luck with the components.
 

danfoz

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Apr 12, 2011
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Originally Posted by CAMPYBOB .


Final assembly is still performed in Bedford, Pennsylvania. AFA quality goes, a friend just cracked his at the seatstay cluster. Cannondale replaced it under warranty.
Curious, was this one of the alu caads or a cf bike?
 

CAMPYBOB

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Carbon. It broke at the junction of the right seat stay/seat post. The owner is a powerful 235 pound mass of muscle that crushes me on flat roads.

I'll get the model from him next time I see him. He took a Slice TT as a replacement and bought a Scott to replace the broken road Cannondale.
 

Texasbob

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Jul 12, 2012
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Well i would look around, you never know what you might find made in the U.S.A. there is no reason to settle for imports! not to beat the dead horse but that's why we are where we are now, just settling for ****.
 

alienator

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Jun 10, 2004
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Texasbob said:
there is no reason to settle for imports! not to beat the dead horse but that's why we are where we are now, just settling for ****.
Complete and utter BS. A great reason for "settling" for an imported bike is the case in which it fits better, rides better, looks better, and better fits your budget. Anything that things there's one reason why "we are were we are now, just settling for ****" hasn't given critical thought a try at all.
 

CAMPYBOB

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Complete and utter BS.

Not really. Tainted baby formula. Contaminated milk. Drywall that outgasses sulpher fumes. If you pay third world labor rates and third world laborers, don't be surprised if you get third world quality.

A great reason for "settling" for an imported bike is the case in which it fits better, rides better, looks better, and better fits your budget.

Wow. Chicom bikes fit better than American or Canadian bikes. Who knew?

Cheaper? Yes.

Anything that things there's one reason why "we are were we are now, just settling for ****" hasn't given critical thought a try at all.

Evidently, critical 'thinkers' give a hell of a lot of thought to what they type.

Engrish. Does anyone speak it?
 

okhealthy

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Jul 11, 2012
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[COLOR= rgb(24, 24, 24)]Consider buying a GUNNAR. i think...[/COLOR]/img/vbsmilies/smilies/smile.gif
 

kdelong

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Dec 14, 2006
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Originally Posted by okhealthy .

[COLOR= rgb(24, 24, 24)]Consider buying a GUNNAR. i think...[/COLOR]/img/vbsmilies/smilies/smile.gif
Why a Gunnar?
 

Dave Cutter

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Jan 15, 2012
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Originally Posted by CAMPYBOB .

Huffman/Huffy is long gone. Roadmaster is gone. The victims of union labor, poor management and cheap foreign labor.
I think for the most part... it is a little unfair to blame the American manufactures or union labor. The State Department negotiates trade agreements with other nations. And it might be fair to say that agreements to allow bicycles to be imported into the USA without tariffs was the coffin nail for the common American Bicycle. But, I am not going to blame corrupt politicians or a failure of the lobbyist culture in Washington ether. The fact is many markets are ether quickly becoming... or are already global markets.

Why make make cars in Michigan when you you can make them in Tennessee and not have to kick-back fortunes to both corrupt Unions and Governments? If you have a bicycle shop... why not offer your customers the best value and price you can..... particularly when it directly affects your own bottom line?

Cars and bicycles aren't so greatly different no matter where they are assembled. Engineering is what makes the difference.. and that has been a global market for some time. Right now... the best value in bicycles come from those made is asia. In a few years bicycles may be made in Africa with cars coming here from China.
 

CAMPYBOB

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When I imported bikes from Canada, there WAS a tariff. AFAIK, there still is, Same with cycling clothing and spares.

According to my quick web search, 5.5% to 11% import duties on bikes is the going rate, depending on whether it is childrens, adult or type (basically size, road, mountain, etc.). About what I was paying in the early '80's.

I imported bike clothing at 15%-30% duty IIRC.

Unions absolutely KILLED the big three American bike manufactures. Schwinn management did a damned fine job of putting nails in its coffin with MULTIPLE poor, late and non-existent responses to the market. Labor costs, when it comes to building bikes, is a huge part of the equation.

The major American companies put up with unions for decades and finally ran absolutely screaming from the cost of doing business with them. Ohio was home to several of the major bike manufacturers and none of them are left. Arnold & Ignatz were in Chicago...the heart of socialist union corruption.

Quality, high-dollar bikes still sell and durability still sells too. Name brands still sell. Even after all these years. The Schwinn name (and Motobecane/Windsor/Peugeot/Raleigh etc.) still sell well at Wallyworld and on the web despite folks not realizing they are buying very low quality (in many cases) Chicom bikes that may or may not meet CPSC regulations.

I don't pin the blame so much on globalization...we still manufacture plenty of good, quality stuff here. Hell, if the Swiss can be successful at manufacturing and exporting, ANYONE can!

I blame stupid capitalists and greedy socialists. Global competition simply shined a bright spotlight on the failings of both management and workers.
 

CAMPYBOB

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Sep 12, 2005
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In a few years bicycles may be made in Africa with cars coming here from China

God help us...

I think this is the new ITT bike from Rhodesi...er...The People's Democratic Republic of Zimbabwe.

 

Dave Cutter

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Jan 15, 2012
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Originally Posted by CAMPYBOB .

According to my quick web search, 5.5% to 11% import duties on bikes is the going rate, depending on whether it is childrens, adult or type (basically size, road, mountain, etc.). About what I was paying in the early '80's.
It's a small tariff! Americans... unionized company's, or not, can't compete with cheap imports. Government decides what industry's will be export businesses... and which ones will be traded or used in trade or shared in other areas (turned into imports). That IS the way international trade works... like it or not.

People often forget the amount of revenue our government gets from import fees and tariffs. Or how big of a constituent that can make foreign nations appear to be to our elected politicians. The same as our government is currently wildly spending more than it can raise... in the past government has traded manufacturing for short term gain. And... the practice continues today as well.

I am NOT saying trade shouldn't take place! I am not even against Murry, Huffy, and Schwinn being a part of the “trade deals”. I am NOT pro (nor anti-) union ether. And.... I really, really, like my Chinese made bicycle!

But.... we can't over-look the part that Government plays in our ability to produce in America. We have regulated many of our businesses into bankruptcy.

If the current administration needs a boost of foreign moneys to keep itself afloat it will sell out the American auto industry to the Chinese in a heart-beat.