Van Dessel cycles?

Discussion in 'Cycling Equipment' started by JohnO, Oct 5, 2005.

  1. JohnO

    JohnO New Member

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    Anybody have any independent beta on this company? I came across one of their road bikes for sale at an attractive price, but outside of the company website, can't find out a lot about it. A search here and bikeforums.net didn't reveal a lot, other than the company is not large, and has had financial ups and downs over the last few years. They sell an interesting mix of road, off road, and fixed gear bikes, aluminum frames probably of Asian manufacture.

    They sponsor several amateur and semi-pro teams in the northeast US. (plus a new Iraqi team that's on a shoestring budget, not to mention hazardous road conditions)

    Interesting that their sponsored team list is larger than their dealer list, which got my curiosity. They're certainly doing their fair share to support amateur cycling...
     
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  2. AussieRob

    AussieRob New Member

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    Yeah, I've seen those Louie Garneau guys in action a couple of them are machines. I see they sponsor Colavita as well. They are a proper pro-team and I think Todd Herriott was nearly 30 when he went pro (but I could be wrong) an inspiration to us all.


    Sorry I'll get back on track, never ridden them, never even seen one but I hear they have decent track bikes.
     
  3. vonnieglen

    vonnieglen New Member

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    I bought a Van Dessel SuperFly 7 through Ebay last year to use as a rain bike. It was NOS (new old stock). I believe they have been discontinued now. It has a seven speed nexus hub and roller brake, front disc brake, suspension seat post, a fork with a spring in it, 30c x 700c tires, some funky mustache handlebars and an aluminum frame. Even with shipping, I got the whole bike for around the cost of a new nexus hub, brake and shifter. They retailed for around $800; so I felt like it was almost a gift.

    http://www.thstore.com/thstore/ProductInfo2_2water.asp?ID=H-VDC-FLY&GroupID=243

    I believe my bike was designed with heavy duty commuting in mind. It weighs about 30 pounds. Just the nexus hub and roller brake weigh about 3 pounds I believe. The frame has a heavy duty look, with oversized looking dropouts. The finish is nice and the welds are all good looking. I pulled the sticker off, but if I remember correctly it said "Made in Taiwan". The bike feels totally different than a light weight racing bike. I put some fenders on it, and take it out when the weather is nasty.

    The bike rides very nice. It's unusual configuration make it kind of a head turner when you see other cyclists on the road. I call it my PeeWee Herman bike. The mustache handlebars work well for me, when I want to get low, I rest my forearms on the handlebar grips and can still hold on to the front of the bars.

    The only very minor issues I have with the bike: The fork has a little play in it; even after taking it apart and reassembling it. I haven't able to correct the problem, but I have gotten used to it. The front disc brake rotor is slightly warped which makes it difficult to get a good adjustment. When I went in to my local bike shop they told me that it was within the typical tolerances for inexpensive disc brakes.

    Overall, some thought appears to have gone into the design of this bike. I like the end product. I don't know about their other models. This one was designed for comfort and reliability not speed.

    Steve M





     
  4. ghostpedal

    ghostpedal New Member

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    I don't know much, but they have a good reputation with fixed gear and single-speed community. I would personally have no problem getting one.
     
  5. road demon

    road demon New Member

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    They are well designed bikes as the owner is an excellent cat1 rider, 50-51 min 40 km TT rider, who is very passionate about his product. He really supports the racing community.

    Yes, you are correct, they have sponsored Colavita both Pro and Amateur squads before Felt came on board. He does continue to sponsor some of the Amateur Colavita programs outside of the NJ/NYC metro area as well as LG Racing.

    Their compact frames feature more of a 'road geometry' and have been one of the top 3 frames I have ever ridden. I prefer a Van Dessel to a Serotta any day of the week (I have ridden the nhx, colorado 2, and Ti). I agree that Serotta have excellent craftsmanship but they are more geared toward different demographics... Even though they are made Tawian, Van Dessel use high end name brand tubing /carbon fiber, and are quite light.

    The TT bike are also quite nice for the price and are actually quite aero, they would be my second choice behind Cervelo, but Cervelo's are 2-3x the price for a little more aero refinement. I am currently thinking about the Van Dessel for a TT bike in the future.

    The balance of the bike part specs are usually filled in with Ritchey WCS or Pro parts.

    The new full carbon bike for 2005 is real looker and I'm sure rides quite well.
    I currently have retired my Van Dessel Campitello (altec2 tubing with deda carbon stays, alpha Q sub3 fork) to winter duties. It is handled well at speed and very comfortable. It was sub 17.5 lb bike with dura/ace. I know that the Kermis (high end aluminium bike) replaces the Campitello for 2005.

    Check them out...
    j
     
  6. Sprint2Win

    Sprint2Win New Member

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    Ask the guy who owns one and has tried to contact customer service.
    Be afraid. Be very afraid.
     
  7. road demon

    road demon New Member

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    Hi Sprint2win

    I'm confused, Van Dessel are quite robust bikes. Have you had a problem? I'm sure you just need to contact them; they also have a good crash replacement program @ 50% of MSRP.
     
  8. Sprint2Win

    Sprint2Win New Member

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    No don't own one. I was seriously considering one, until I listened to two owners discussing their situations. No response to their multiple e-mail requests and at that time, no website or phone numbers. Yea, maybe that was a few months ago, but I'm not throwing any cash their way and the way those guys were talking, they won't be either.

    Did they ever get their website up? When I was looking at them, the promise was that it would be up soon. In fact I think the date promised had already passed.

    I'd be afraid to risk it.


     
  9. vonnieglen

    vonnieglen New Member

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    I am not sure why the owners of Van Dessel bikes you referred to were having a difficult time contacting the company. Before I bid on Ebay, I contacted both the company through their website and the seller, who was an authorized dealer with 100% Ebay feedback at that time. I felt very confidant in both the product I was bidding on, and the seller. I ended up getting it for such a cheap price that I felt guilty... almost ; ). The bike has never dissapointed me. Here is a link to their current website contact page:

    http://www.vandesselsports.com/contact.php
     
  10. road demon

    road demon New Member

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    People always like to talk trash about bicycle companys. Sounds like a friend of a friend story? Most bicycles are quite good these days.

    I know the owner personally and he is a stand-up guy. He is quite reasonable and is passionate about his product. Maybe he tried to work with these 'guys' and they were not into his resolution. Perhaps these guys crashed the bike and was trying to claim a manafacturing defect? I have spent many years working in a big pro bike shop, and people often come in for warranty on something that is clearly a neglect / abuse / crash issue?

    We don't know all the details? I think is a good bike (esp in terms of geometry and fit) and would recommend it anyone in the market for 2-3K road bicycle. I'll pass on the Treks and Serottas, and take the Van Dessel do to its road racing geometry.

    cheers, j
     
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