Do good value for performance bikes have to be American?



J

Jo Stoller

Guest
After not having a bike for many many years, I am about to
buy a new one. It is for general riding in London, commuting
and some long rides
e.g. in the Cotswolds. Almost all on road but perhaps some
off road on reasonable tracks. I am not bothered about
suspension but would like to have SPD type pedals with
an option for normal shoes.

For £599 I was offered a Trek 7500 FX with non-suspension
forks and wheels that have more spokes than the website
version (to suit city roads), plus dual use pedals (suitable
for spd and normal shoes) and a rear luggage rack. The bike
is shown on the manufacturer web page:
http://www.trekbike.co.uk/bikes/2004/city/fx/7500.php

A friend that has been bugging me to get a bike said he has
that frame and that it was good. He said I should take a
look at the equivalent Marin. I suppose he must mean the San
Anselmo £595 http://www.marin.co.uk/marin-
2004/bikedetail.php?ModNo=2456 or the Lucas Valley £599 http://www.marin.co.uk/marin-
2004/bikedetail.php?ModNo=2460

I was an enthusiastic cyclist in my younger days and even
entered a couple of races. I have done a fair amount of
cycling in recent times (including African mountains and
deserts) but only on borrowed or hired bikes. Now that I
have to make a purchase decision, I am now astonished about
how technology and the market has changed.

The bike shops are now dominated by bikes from American
companies. In addition to the Trek, I was also offered
Cannondale and Specialized but they were even worse from my
point of view because they had big markings boasting about
the fact that they were American and/or made there. I would
like to be able to consider a non-US bike if possible
without compromising value for money.

I know that specification is not everything, so I will try
riding the options before buying. I am fairly comfortable
with the idea of going to a 'proper bike shop' to get good
after sales tweaking but I want to get the basic decision
close to ideal.

What do you guys think of what I have been offered? Are they
really the best value, or is there another make (model
suggestion would help too) from another country that I
should consider? Surely America cannot have the entire
market sewn up. If anyone has a good second hand one I might
consider it too.

Many thanks
 
D

Dirtylitterboxo

Guest
If you want a good value bike - try

http://www.edinburgh-bicycle.co.uk/

Their own brand bikes get consistently good reviews as being
exceptionally good value for money.

Also consider Dawes bikes. The Discovery range is good
value.

Cheers, helen s

--This is an invalid email address to avoid spam-- to get
correct one remove fame & fortune
h*$el*$$e*nd**$o$ts**i*$*$m*m$o*n*[email protected]$*a$o*l.c**$om$

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is switched off--
 
L

-Lsqnot Respond

Guest
On 14 Jun 2004 13:25:30 -0700, [email protected] (Jo Stoller)
wrote:

>Are they really the best value, or is there another make
>(model suggestion would help too) from another country that
>I should consider?

My bikes (ie last bike(crashed) and last bike but
one(stolen)) usually come from Ridgeback who can be found at
http://www.ridgebackbikes.co.uk/.

They don't actually build frames in the UK but I don't think
many people do these days, with the exception of custom
builds. They are, however, refreshingly not Merkin.

I was happy with both Ridgebacks that I owned.
 
D

Doctor J. Frink

Guest
On 14 Jun 2004 20:41:50 GMT, dirtylitterboxofferingstospammers
<[email protected]> wrote:
>If you want a good value bike - try
>
>http://www.edinburgh-bicycle.co.uk/
>
>Their own brand bikes get consistently good reviews as
>being exceptionally good value for money.
>
>Also consider Dawes bikes. The Discovery range is
>good value.

Seconded. Just got a Discovery 201. Very happy with it
compared to my old Carrera Crossfire.

I'm not sure just how British their bikes are anymore,
though.

Frink

--
Doctor J. Frink : 'Rampant Ribald Ringtail' See his mind
here : http://www.cmp.liv.ac.uk/frink/ Annoy his mind here :
pjf at cmp dot liv dot ack dot ook "No sir, I didn't like
it!" - Mr Horse
 
S

Simonb

Guest
Doctor J. Frink wrote:

> I'm not sure just how British their bikes are
> anymore, though.

Confirmed by my LBS -- Fort (Czech Republic) makes the Dawes
Audax frame.

But most US frames are made in TW anyway.
 
P

Paul

Guest
In article
<[email protected]>,=20
[email protected] says...
> The bike shops are now dominated by bikes from American
> companies. In addition to the Trek, I was also offered
> Cannondale and Specialized but they were even worse from
> my point of view because they had big markings boasting
> about the fact that they were American and/or made there.
> I would like to be able to consider a non-US bike if
> possible without compromising value for money.
> =20
>=20
cannondale do good frames, and both mine have been made in
the usa, but=20 at your price point, you wont get good good
componets on a 'dale frame.=20 Excelent basis for upgrades
though. Most frames these days are however=20 manufacured in
tiwan irrespective of the country of assembly and=20
trademark, the exception being custom frames, but again, not
at your=20 price point. Oh and components wise, you'll
probably end up with shimano=20 (the miccrosoft of the
cycling world) and I *think* these are made in=20 japan.
It's dificult to be patriotic, and almost imposible at
around=20 =A3500. --=20 .paul

If at first you don't succeed... Skydiving is probably not
the sport for you.
 
D

Doctor J. Frink

Guest
On Mon, 14 Jun 2004 21:56:43 +0000 (UTC), paul
<[email protected]> wrote:

>price point. Oh and components wise, you'll probably end up
>with shimano (the miccrosoft of the cycling world)

Is that comparison made on their market share, or the
quality of their products (or both)?

There's certainly nothing wrong with dominating a market if
you're producing good stuff, but not if you abuse the
position to keep down those that would.

Frink

--
Doctor J. Frink : 'Rampant Ribald Ringtail' See his mind
here : http://www.cmp.liv.ac.uk/frink/ Annoy his mind here :
pjf at cmp dot liv dot ack dot ook "No sir, I didn't like
it!" - Mr Horse
 
S

Simon Brooke

Guest
in message <[email protected]>, Jo Stoller
('[email protected]') wrote:

> After not having a bike for many many years, I am about to
> buy a new one. It is for general riding in London,
> commuting and some long rides
> e.g. in the Cotswolds. Almost all on road but perhaps some
> off road on reasonable tracks. I am not bothered
> about suspension but would like to have SPD type
> pedals with an option for normal shoes.
>
> The bike shops are now dominated by bikes from American
> companies. In addition to the Trek, I was also offered
> Cannondale and Specialized but they were even worse from
> my point of view because they had big markings boasting
> about the fact that they were American and/or made there.
> I would like to be able to consider a non-US bike if
> possible without compromising value for money.

There are actually plenty of good non-US manufacturers, but,
unless you're prejudiced (and I know people who are) many of
the big American brands do offer good value for money. Of
UK-built bikes in the sort of robust hybrid category you're
thinking of Dawes and Orange are names to consider (but
beware that the low-end models in each range have frames
made in Taiwan). If you're prepared to consider European as
well, Nicolai make bikes at least as good as the best of the
big American brands. And there are many others.

> What do you guys think of what I have been offered? Are
> they really the best value, or is there another make
> (model suggestion would help too) from another country
> that I should consider?

Best value for a robust but performant hybrid is probably
the Edinburgh Bicycle Co-op's Revolution Courier (frame made
in Taiwan, I believe, but to EBC's design).

--
[email protected] (Simon Brooke)
http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/ ;; "If I were a Microsoft
Public Relations person, I would probably ;; be sobbing on a
desk right now" -- Rob Miller, editor, /.
 
S

Simonb

Guest
Simon Brooke wrote:

> (but beware that the low-end models in each range have
> frames made in Taiwan)

Why 'beware' of TW frames? They were pretty good quality
last time I looked.
 
S

Simon Brooke

Guest
in message <[email protected]>, Doctor J. Frink
('[email protected]') wrote:

> On Mon, 14 Jun 2004 21:56:43 +0000 (UTC), paul
> <[email protected]> wrote:
>
>>price point. Oh and components wise, you'll probably end
>>up with shimano (the miccrosoft of the cycling world)
>
> Is that comparison made on their market share, or the
> quality of their products (or both)?

Nothing specially wrong with Shimano's products. On the
whole they're workmanlike, reliable, quite well made,
and good value for money. So wholly unlike Microsoft on
those counts.

--
[email protected] (Simon Brooke)
http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/

'You cannot put "The Internet" into the
Recycle Bin.'
 
M

Mark South

Guest
"paul" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> Oh and components wise, you'll probably end up with
> shimano (the miccrosoft of the cycling world) and I
> *think* these are made in japan.

Ony their higher end stuff is made in Japan, the bulk of the
range comes from Taiwan and the mainland.
--
"Mango sorbet is clearcut proof that we have progressed
beyond the bare needs of survival and have progressed to the
transcendant."
- Marc Goodman in talk.bizarre
 
M

Michael Macclan

Guest
On Tue, 15 Jun 2004 07:45:28 +0200, Mark South wrote:

> "paul" <[email protected]> wrote in
> message
> news:[email protected]...
>> Oh and components wise, you'll probably end up with
>> shimano (the miccrosoft of the cycling world) and I
>> *think* these are made in japan.
>
> Ony their higher end stuff is made in Japan, the bulk of
> the range comes from Taiwan and the mainland.

... the mainland of what?
--
Michael MacClancy Random putdown - "A modest little person,
with much to be modest about."- Winston Churchill
www.macclancy.demon.co.uk www.macclancy.co.uk
 
M

Martin Wilson

Guest
On Tue, 15 Jun 2004 00:15:17 +0100, "Simonb"
<[email protected]> wrote:

>Simon Brooke wrote:
>
>> (but beware that the low-end models in each range have
>> frames made in Taiwan)
>
>Why 'beware' of TW frames? They were pretty good quality
>last time I looked.
>
>

I find it very confusing to judge quality by nationality.
Taiwan makes both excellent and poor products. Many
Taiwanese firms have opened factories in china producing
good quality products too but generally mainland chinese
companies produce poor quality cycle products.Taiwan is
distinct and seperate from mainland china in not only the
fact its an island but it has a japanese designed
infrastructure, major european influence and is a democracy.
Malay-Polynesian people were the main settlers on the island
originally and add to this people of chinese, japanese and
european descent creates a unique type of people and race
completely different in culture to china.

The main concern of the taiwan industry seems to be
competition from even cheaper but lower quality mainland
chinese products.

I doubt there can be any true british products anywhere near
the bottom end of pricing without sacrificing quality as
Britain is so expensive to manufacture in. I work for a
swiss company (Baumanns) manufacturing springs and pressings
in the uk and the company also owns chinese factories.UK
labour costs are at least 4x more expensive and Baumanns pay
very well in china compared to native chinese companies.
Other costs compare even better in china's favour.

Its far cheaper to manufacture in the states and many
american firms actually manufacture in Mexico but still end
up with 'Made in USA' stickers on. I believe a 'Made in USA"
should represent 75% usa made content but in fact can be as
low as 30%.

the best Britain can achieve really is design and
development of bikes that are manufactured elsewhere with
top end models hand built in Britain to exacting
specifications. I suspect thats pretty much where we are at.
 
P

Peter Clinch

Guest
Doctor J. Frink wrote:

[shimano]
> Is that comparison made on their market share, or the
> quality of their products (or both)?

Market Share. Some of their very low range stuff is made of
cheese, but costs less than cheese so that's forgivable. The
high end stuff is very good. Maybe not the best, but even if
that is the case it's generally not too far off.

Pete.
--
Peter Clinch Medical Physics IT Officer Tel 44 1382 660111
ext. 33637 Univ. of Dundee, Ninewells Hospital Fax 44 1382
640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK net
[email protected] http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
 
A

Ambrose Nankive

Guest
In news:[email protected],
Michael MacClancy <[email protected]> typed:
> On Tue, 15 Jun 2004 07:45:28 +0200, Mark South wrote:
>
>> "paul" <[email protected]> wrote in
>> message
>> news:[email protected]...
>>> Oh and components wise, you'll probably end up with
>>> shimano (the miccrosoft of the cycling world) and I
>>> *think* these are made in japan.
>>
>> Ony their higher end stuff is made in Japan, the bulk of
>> the range comes from Taiwan and the mainland.
>
> ... the mainland of what?

Orkney, obviously. That's the only place I know called
Mainland.

A
 
M

Mark South

Guest
"Michael MacClancy" <[email protected]> wrote in message
news:[email protected]...
> On Tue, 15 Jun 2004 07:45:28 +0200, Mark South wrote:
>
> > "paul" <[email protected]> wrote in
> > message
> > news:[email protected]...
> >> Oh and components wise, you'll probably end up with
> >> shimano (the miccrosoft of the cycling world) and I
> >> *think* these are made in japan.
> >
> > Ony their higher end stuff is made in Japan, the bulk of
> > the range comes
from
> > Taiwan and the mainland.
>
> ... the mainland of what?

Mainland China. It would have sounded dumb to write "from
Taiwan and China." since Taiwan is China.
--
"Do stairs, stairs, and more stairs, wherever you can
find them."
- Jim Roberts in rec.backcountry
 
A

Ambrose Nankive

Guest
In news:[email protected],
Mark South <[email protected]> typed:
> "Michael MacClancy" <[email protected]> wrote in
> message news:[email protected]...
>> On Tue, 15 Jun 2004 07:45:28 +0200, Mark South wrote:
>>
>>> "paul" <[email protected]> wrote in
>>> message
>>> news:[email protected]...
>>>> Oh and components wise, you'll probably end up with
>>>> shimano (the miccrosoft of the cycling world) and I
>>>> *think* these are made in japan.
>>>
>>> Ony their higher end stuff is made in Japan, the bulk of
>>> the range comes from Taiwan and the mainland.
>>
>> ... the mainland of what?
>
> Mainland China. It would have sounded dumb to write "from
> Taiwan and China." since Taiwan is China.

Well, you don't have to take that line, as you're not trying
to keep up good diplomatic relations with Beijing.

A
 
M

Michael Macclan

Guest
On Tue, 15 Jun 2004 10:56:17 +0100, Ambrose Nankivell wrote:

> In news:[email protected], Mark South
> <[email protected]> typed:
>> "Michael MacClancy" <[email protected]> wrote in
>> message news:[email protected]...
>>> On Tue, 15 Jun 2004 07:45:28 +0200, Mark South wrote:
>>>
>>>> "paul" <[email protected]> wrote in
>>>> message
>>>> news:[email protected]...
>>>>> Oh and components wise, you'll probably end up with
>>>>> shimano (the miccrosoft of the cycling world) and I
>>>>> *think* these are made in japan.
>>>>
>>>> Ony their higher end stuff is made in Japan, the bulk
>>>> of the range comes from Taiwan and the mainland.
>>>
>>> ... the mainland of what?
>>
>> Mainland China. It would have sounded dumb to write "from
>> Taiwan and China." since Taiwan is China.
>
> Well, you don't have to take that line, as you're not
> trying to keep up good diplomatic relations with Beijing.
>

... or Peking, even. ;-)

--
Michael MacClancy Random putdown - "He has no enemies, but
is intensely disliked by his friends." -Oscar Wilde
www.macclancy.demon.co.uk www.macclancy.co.uk