Saturday, May 18, 2013

Time for Some Bashin'

I met, what seemed to be, an avid cyclist today on the greenway beside my townhouse today. His head was full of all kinds of crazy info about the top three bike manufacturers in the USA though. This was unlike me, I sat there and listened the whole time and never disputed him once for the entire conversation. To tell you the truth I can't remember how this all began in the first place.... oh moto-van, that's it. Huge sticker on the back...

He some how still believes that there are several of the "big companies" making bikes in the USA. He won't purchase anything but "made in the USA". For the record here the "big companies" from here on out will be in reference to; Giant, Cannondale (crack and fail), Specialized (special-ed) and Trek (over priced metal and fibers). He goes on about where he's read this and that about this brand and that brand. I let him go on.... He's been to the Trek factory years ago, blah, blah, blah. The only reason I kept listening to him because he was entertaining me so.

FACTS: (and you can find these yourself)

Giant, Trek and Specialized are the biggest bike brands in the world, plain fact. Giant, for the most part, manufactures most every one's frames. Yes all you Special-ed, Trekkies and Crack and Fail fans swallow your pride because most all of us ride Giant bikes. (The Madone high-end frame is still manufactured in Wi..... for now) Merida slides right up there close with several manufacturing plants in China and Taiwan just like Giant. Oh, Merida owns 49% of Specialized just so you all know. Dorel industries owns so many damn bike companies I'm not going to waste the time to type them all out, google it for yourself! Many of the greats have fell into the Pacific Bikes Corp "junk bike pit" over the many years gone by in which Dorel rightly owns.

Here's another amazing fact from Bicycle Retailer: All of the "serious" cyclists, you know the ones that race their local world championships every week, you, I, them, we've all done it. Oh yea the serious racers too, we only make up a little over 10% of all bike sales in the world. YES!! That's correct! The other 90% are department store sales whether you believe it or not. I've seen countless people get mad when a popular company that's selling bikes like mad amongst the "10%" goes out and makes a deal with the likes of Costco, Walmart or Target to start selling their bikes in the dept. stores. Why wouldn't they? If I owned a company I would want the most sales possible. Mind ya now that the quality takes a real dive into the poop bucket right after that just so they can meet the price points that the big department stores require though. Sorry, can't blame them.

It seems like the majority of the 10% think that if a bike costs alot it's "better" than what everyone else is riding. It's true! You know it they do. We have peeps roll into the store and get totally pissed off because they over spent on a bike by sometimes as much as 35% from another brand.

Let's take a Trek entry level non-disc MTB. These go for around $400, sometimes higher. The same bike of a lesser popular brand, like a Raleigh, is $360. Why? Hell the frame is probably made on the same welding line in China - it just takes a detour at some point to paint and decals. But you have to tack on $40 more bucks for that name "Trek". It's not a better bike. Its the same bike.

Another cute point; Specialized now has their own wind tunnel. Wow! (not) who cares? Guess who paid for it? Any of you peeps that bought one of their bikes...... suckas. Branding at it's finest. Just cause it's expensive doesn't always mean its the best, do your research.... seriously. Just because a pro rider wins on a brand doesn't mean you will too. Buy what fits YOU and works for YOU not someone else and 'nother thing; quit trying to keep up with the Jones'. When I go to races and I see some cat roll up on an old beater and wax these (and mine) guys butts it tickles me to death, I get such a good inner chuckle when this happens but oh these guys that spend thousands and are so serious racing locally/regionally nearly have heart attacks losing to these cats. It's hilarious!

This thing makes it easier for Special-ed to suck dollars from their customers pockets.
Oh, just release recently, you can buy a special-ed"ition" Cav replica frame for alot of extra money just so you think you have the only one on the world. That's right if you buy stuff like this.... No stupid it won't make you faster! It's the same frame you can buy with the "normal" paint job for much less. Ah well, just go ahead and buy it - then hang it up in the garage with the rest of the collection.
USA Today said it best; "The Lance Armstrong Era is over, and mountain bikes are back in style".
LeMond was right.... "that's all I have to say about that" - Forest Gump

Talk about R&D waste at Crack and Fail.....or employees with nothing better to do. Oh yea, they are the ones that tried to make a motocross bike that looked like a Honda back in the day. Boy were their heads somewhere else. Looks cool though. Wonder how many they'd have to sell to recoup the costs of that?

not in a LONG time...
Last but not least..... Mr Sinyard; The guy that stole, some say bought, Fisher/Ritcheys' idea and mass produced it. It's ok Mr Fisher and Mr. Ritchey your'e way cooler...  I so used to be a fan of specialized before I learned many things.
What about the two employees that wanted to go out on their own and start a bike company? Last I read Special-ed was suing them...

Well all that ma-larky leads me to this little Craigslist jewel below. A 2000 Trek 6000 with cargo-kit.... Asking $950.

Lets see; a 2000 Trek 6000 that retailed for $659 back in it's day (now 13 yrs old) and a cargo kit that costs $340 shipped to your front door for a total of a $999 investment. The best part on this whole bike is the derailleur, an X9, other than the cargo kit of course. RST fork and V-brakes..... oh lord. This may hold some sort of sentimental value so I should be cautious not to pee anyone off with my commentary.

My point, why do folks think Trek, Cannondale and Specialized stuff is so valuable? Better yet, why have I wasted an hour typing about this? I'm not busting on this ad just confused. I'm bored, it's raining outside. I think I'll take a bike apart just to have something to do.

LAter G...................

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