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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 5:29 pm 
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Interesting article over at BikeRadar on this topic with some interesting reader comments. Here are just a few excerpts from the main article.

Quote:
When you’re shopping for a high-end carbon bike with a monocoque frame, you pay a huge premium for traditional European ‘prestige’ brands, but to varying extents, almost all of them make use of outsourced Asian manufacturing.

That doesn’t mean the bikes aren’t designed by the brands themselves of course, but it does make the value proposition more complicated.

If an Italian superbike that costs as much as a small family car is manufactured in the same factory as more mainstream, affordable machines — using similar techniques — then can it justify costing so much more?

Bike frames are relatively simple objects and unlike say cars, the differences between high-end competing models often come down to minor design decisions rather than radically different construction methods or materials.


Quote:
It's also worth noting that brands don't look to Taiwan simply because the cost of labour there is lower than in Europe. It's also where much of the expertise resides — if you want cutting-edge moulded carbon, it's the place to be.


Quote:
I’d argue that bikes are just objects onto which we project our feelings, and any notion of baked-in qualities like passion and flare — the top two Italian bike review clichés — is a reflection of our own prejudices rather than anything meaningful.

Having said that, it’s entirely reasonable to debate the value of branding. At what point does a brand give up too much of its identity and will the companies who outsource their manufacturing ultimately lose out?


http://www.bikeradar.com/gear/article/w ... made-50553


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:26 pm 
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Do I care? I claim I do...but my SS Evo Hm is made in china... Would I pay more for an US made frame, probably... Even I know actual prices do not reflect the Chinese manufacturing.
If I go for a metal frame it will be French made (FKC or Levacon). If tomorrow time produces a better frame than my ss I would be glad to switch!
So carbon bike industry left with little options, quality can be found overseas and people still pay same high prices when production was local...

Envoyé de mon iPhone en utilisant Tapatalk


Last edited by C36 on Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Posted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:26 pm 


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:41 pm 
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Quote:
At what point does a brand give up too much of its identity and will the companies who outsource their manufacturing ultimately lose out?


The point at which anyone cares and stops buying, which is never. Consumers care about the brand, design, and functionality, not the location of the factory it was made or the ethics of labor involved. Companies that don't outsource are fighting the good fight but ultimately are either at a disadvantage or serve a niche.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:47 pm 
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The cutting-edge molded carbon quote doesn't hold much water given how much aerospace grade composite manufacturing is done in Europe, Japan, and the US.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:50 pm 
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Yes I Care! And I don't care at the same time. I have multiple bikes. My "favorite" emotionally bikes are made in USA. Waterford, Litespeed, Cannondale. But one of my favorite to ride bikes is my Ridley carbon bike with Di2. I assume that frame is from China. Di2 may be China or Japan. No Made In sticker on the frame that I can see. Assume China. So I care, but I don't care. If the bike rides great then I don't really care too much. I also care if I can get the bike bought at a great price. So where its made is affected by the bargain analysis too. I like riding an American bike. Or western European bike. Or maybe a Japanese bike too. But I'm not sure it really affects which bike I buy or ride. All of my bikes are good bikes. USA, China, Taiwan.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:50 pm 
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Do I care ?

Yes and no...

No, as long as the quality control is good.

Yes, for a bit of "emotion", but especially to keep the labour in my country or region.

I must say, I own a Cannondale CAAD 10, great bike, nothing to downgrade on... BUT... comparing my CAAD 10 with older hand made CAAD's from the US, you clearly can see the quality differences..., in favor of the older CAAD's obviously.

Cannondale doesn't take me as a consumer very serious I think. They want to drive costs down, for profit and to keep the bike affordable. But man, I was really ready to pay the full amount for such a nice hand made CAAD !!!

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:05 pm 
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I personally think that too much attention is given to where a frame is made and very little is given to what went into making it. It would be nice if manufacturers would use their QC process or training program as a differentiator. I think we really need a JD Power or Edmunds type for bicycles. It would be nice to know what the failure rate of certain manufacturers is. It's like Porsche vs Audi. Both made in Germany but one has a distinctly better reliability rating among its lineup than the other. As with cars, I'm sure origin of manufacturer means jack.

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Current Stable. The Snob Machine | The Crumpton
The Ex's. LS Siena: 6.21kg | Parlee Z5 SLi: 5.9kg | LS Xicon: 5.76kg | C59: 5.7kg | Cervelo R5ca: 5.09kg | Fuji Altamira SE - 6.2kg | Scott Foil - 6.2kg | Evo - 5.18kg | LS Classic - 6.7kg


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:29 pm 
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RyanH wrote:
. As with cars, I'm sure origin of manufacturer means jack


In terms of reliability perhaps (though cars are far more complicated and not really comparable), but would you be willing to pay a premium for a Porsche or Ferrari if it was made in Taiwan?



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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:34 pm 
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RyanH wrote:
I personally think that too much attention is given to where a frame is made and very little is given to what went into making it. It would be nice if manufacturers would use their QC process or training program as a differentiator. I think we really need a JD Power or Edmunds type for bicycles. It would be nice to know what the failure rate of certain manufacturers is. It's like Porsche vs Audi. Both made in Germany but one has a distinctly better reliability rating among its lineup than the other. As with cars, I'm sure origin of manufacturer means jack.


Dude... unfortunately Audi's are not made in Germany anymore, fortunately still made in Europe though...

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:43 pm 
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I care where they are made but don't base my purchases based on it. I sold Treks in the eighties and nineties where almost the entire line down to the 329 buck bike was made in Wisconsin. Then in the 90s they put out the Jazz made my Trek to sell bikes under 300 but made over seas (by Giant I think). Nowadays no Trek sub $5-6k is made in the US.
Which makes me value my Colnagos (even my M10 made in Asia) a little more. I just think big manufacturers has gotten pretty greedy shipping overseas to be made super inexpensively(but still even high quality). So it keeps custom frame builders and boutique brands made in their repspective countries relevant to me.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:04 pm 
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@MoPho well, seeing that my Cayenne was made in Slovakia, I guess the answer is yes. Toyota/Lexus, MB and a few other foreign auto makers make some of their cars in the US. Toyota, Lexus and Porsche maintain their reliability despite not being made in the country they are synonymous with. MB still can't make a reliable car regardless of where it's made...

What matters is the processes the manufacturer put in place to ensure a high level of product. When my company responds to an RFP for our services, we have to explain our processes to ensure consistent quality of service. We can't just say that Joe Bob does a really good job all the time and that's good enough. With a boutique shop, that's kinda how it is though.

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Strava
Current Stable. The Snob Machine | The Crumpton
The Ex's. LS Siena: 6.21kg | Parlee Z5 SLi: 5.9kg | LS Xicon: 5.76kg | C59: 5.7kg | Cervelo R5ca: 5.09kg | Fuji Altamira SE - 6.2kg | Scott Foil - 6.2kg | Evo - 5.18kg | LS Classic - 6.7kg


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:59 pm 
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Alumen wrote:
RyanH wrote:
I personally think that too much attention is given to where a frame is made and very little is given to what went into making it. It would be nice if manufacturers would use their QC process or training program as a differentiator. I think we really need a JD Power or Edmunds type for bicycles. It would be nice to know what the failure rate of certain manufacturers is. It's like Porsche vs Audi. Both made in Germany but one has a distinctly better reliability rating among its lineup than the other. As with cars, I'm sure origin of manufacturer means jack.


Dude... unfortunately Audi's are not made in Germany anymore, fortunately still made in Europe though...


Pretty sure my A4 was.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 11:01 pm 
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RyanH wrote:
@MoPho well, seeing that my Cayenne was made in Slovakia, I guess the answer is yes. Toyota/Lexus, MB and a few other foreign auto makers make some of their cars in the US. Toyota, Lexus and Porsche maintain their reliability despite not being made in the country they are synonymous with. MB still can't make a reliable car regardless of where it's made...

What matters is the processes the manufacturer put in place to ensure a high level of product. When my company responds to an RFP for our services, we have to explain our processes to ensure consistent quality of service. We can't just say that Joe Bob does a really good job all the time and that's good enough. With a boutique shop, that's kinda how it is though.



Again, I am not talking about reliability, I am talking about paying a premium to buy into a brands mystique. No one would pay $500k for a Ferrari or a McLaren made in China
Your Cayenne (which are partially built at the VW Toureg plant in Slovakia then finished at the plant in Leipzig, Germany) is one of Porsche's mainstream high volume bread and butter cars, it's not the same as a boutique halo exotic like a GT3 RS or 918, McLaren, Ferrari, etc.. People passionate about cars buy into an exotic sports cars mystique with little regard for reliability, I know because I have had a bunch of British Sports cars LOL
And again, you can't really compare cars to bikes, there is so much more engineering, design, features, performance, feel, smell, touch points, etc., that are unique to the brand/country of origin put into a car vs a bicycle.

I agree with you in regards to the processes put in place to ensure the quality (and why I won't buy the non branded bikes), but what do you think a company like Colnago is doing more to ensure that quality than Giant (who does the manufacturing for Colnago I believe) to make it worth the premium?

.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 09, 2017 11:14 pm 
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Mostly no, my BH is made in Taiwan, probably by Giant, and I have no problem with it.

But would I pay the same current going price for a Rolex that's made in Asia (instead of Swiss) even with the same material and level of craftsmanship? Probably no.

The origin of a super bike (or Rolex) is part of the "luxury". But I will over look the "origin" if the "price" is reduced. I care about the quality and QC more. :)


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:21 am 
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MoPho wrote:
And again, you can't really compare cars to bikes, there is so much more engineering, design, features, performance, feel, smell, touch points, etc., that are unique to the brand/country of origin put into a car vs a bicycle.


I think this goes in line with the original quote about us projecting feelings on inanimate objects. I'm not really a car guy, so my connection with bikes is much stronger than mine with cars. I'm not a sentimental person either, which would make me a bad car collector. For me though, the only reason I can justify the price of a Colnago over a Giant is pure snobbery (I'm being honest). A Colnago is generally accepted as a "superior" frame with "prestige and heritage." If Giant copied the geo of the C60, I'm sure their frame would be as good.

One of the things that bothers me most is how much of my frame cost is going to support marketing vs going into labor/materials. My belief is that it's a really high percentage with Pinarello. This is just a guess, but Cannondale and Spesh move a significant amount of units, so maybe they are putting a similar amount of money into labor/materials per unit but their volume affords them a larger budget with a lower retail price per unit. That's just hopeful guess work. It's also just hopeful that Colnago is hiring more skilled workers that are spending more time building the frames. We have no idea. I suppose that's part of the allure of going to the likes of Crumpton, English or Filament in that you know you're getting a skilled worker to put together your frame. Hopefully they aren't having an off day and incorrectly measure something.

_________________
Strava
Current Stable. The Snob Machine | The Crumpton
The Ex's. LS Siena: 6.21kg | Parlee Z5 SLi: 5.9kg | LS Xicon: 5.76kg | C59: 5.7kg | Cervelo R5ca: 5.09kg | Fuji Altamira SE - 6.2kg | Scott Foil - 6.2kg | Evo - 5.18kg | LS Classic - 6.7kg


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Posted: Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:21 am 


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