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Bike to have fun.
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok this is more of a rant, not saying anything for these companies but, why do people who are not bike enthusiasts seem to think that just because a bike says, Specialized, Trek, etc that it is a nice bike.

Being at a college campus in the city and seeing a vast variety of bikes locked up with cable locks to bike racks (lol), it makes me a little frustrated when someone sees a bike like these companies and go, oh nice. Many of them are pieces of junk!

Rrrg, someone make me feel better about dumb people!

This is also very common in this new Fixie trend with conversion bikes, see all sorts of **** frames advertised on craigslist as name brand!
 

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It's just name brand recognition.
I'll put it like this, if Ferrari made a really crappy car, non-car enthusiasts would still think it's great because, hey, well it says Ferrari on it.
 

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Bike to have fun.
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
GrampBredo said:
It's just name brand recognition.
I'll put it like this, if Ferrari made a really crappy car, non-car enthusiasts would still think it's great because, hey, well it says Ferrari on it.
Agreed! This was just something I was thinking of while I am at work supposed to be doing stuff. Wanna see some responses.
 

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thedumbopinion said:
I agree with the "its just name recognition" but I just bought a Specialized and there are a lot of nice little details on the bike. Those companies do make nice bikes, even nice cheap bikes.
I definitly agree with that, but so do alot of other companies that don't get that same recignition and respect from the uninitiated.
 

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Take it a step further Grant. Some people have a hate for bikes made by these major players. Having an "Exclusive" brand makes them feel special. I have a Trek road bike and a 2008 Trek Remedy 8, my wife has a Specialized StumpJumper. All three are sweet rides. If I had purchased an Ibis Mojo it might have more snob appeal but I don't think it could replace the Remedy. Big companies make a full line of products for a diverse customer base. Ignorant people are just that, uneducated. Now get back to work!
 

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I don't huck.
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grantheppes said:
Ok this is more of a rant, not saying anything for these companies but, why do people who are not bike enthusiasts seem to think that just because a bike says, Specialized, Trek, etc that it is a nice bike.

Being at a college campus in the city and seeing a vast variety of bikes locked up with cable locks to bike racks (lol), it makes me a little frustrated when someone sees a bike like these companies and go, oh nice. Many of them are pieces of junk!

Rrrg, someone make me feel better about dumb people!

This is also very common in this new Fixie trend with conversion bikes, see all sorts of **** frames advertised on craigslist as name brand!
They are not dumb, just uneducated. You are uneducated in some things too and likely say things that seems stupid to those that know better. Perhaps those folks are asking others to make them feel better about you!

Besides, the big brands make some nice bikes, make them by the thousands, make them affordable, and offer good dealer support. As long as it gets folks out on a bike that is not junk, we all win.
 

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Bike to have fun.
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Working in a shop this summer, we didn't carry many name brand company bikes because they demand 60% floor space or something like that (Probably why people identify them). Many customers came in asking for a specific bike that was sold by a name brand and when we tried to offer something similar their response was I want a good bike.

another story:
This man comes in asking us if we can build the bikes he got from online. We tell him to bring the boxes in and we can do it for him. He brings it in and I start on opening them up. He has started putting together the bike himself somewhat. Usual backwards stem or fork, wheels in backwards, saddle positioned all funny, etc. So I go to fixing things causually while he watches and then starts asking me about the quality of his bikes. and I am like uh, they are pretty good.
Within in 20 minutes, we had his two brand new disc brake equipped Cadillac bike and I want to say Ferrari but something similar bikes built! He probably straight to the trails.
 

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Midas summed it up well. Name recognition is everything to the newb. The big box companies have it with all but the small minority of passionate mtbers.Then again it doesn't have to be a boutique bike for it to be nice.
 

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Bike to have fun.
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
mtroy said:
They are not dumb, just uneducated. You are uneducated in some things too and likely say things that seems stupid to those that know better. Perhaps those folks are asking others to make them feel better about you!

Besides, the big brands make some nice bikes, make them by the thousands, make them affordable, and offer good dealer support. As long as it gets folks out on a bike that is not junk, we all win.
Very True. and thank goodness for the internet when I do come into things that I am uneducated about!

I do go to explain to many people that you have to look into what your buying with certain brands, they can put out great bikes and put out pieces of crap. ex: Im told SE bikes are good bmx (not big bmx guy) but they came out with a SE Draft which is a piece of junk singlespeed.
 

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meow, meow.
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This name brand recognition thing goes deeper in detail than the whole bike level, and also deeper in performance awareness than is possible to obtain through web searches.

This happened to me when I had to choose a headset for my first custom build. Guess what, I bought a Chris King. All the web searches I made to justify the purchase led me to conclusion that there's simply nothing better in terms of reliability. That pretty much rang my bell, because I'm a reliability freak (I do miss 8 speed drivetrains, for that matter).

It turned out, however, that CK is overkill for me. I don't like the idea of super precise and super hard crown race, and all of the tools you need to do it right. Yes, you can do it all without crown race facing tool, crown race puller, crown race setter, custom CK headset press adapters, and a starnut setter, but this kind of defeats the purpose of having a super precise headset. And I don't like that o-ring, too.

As far as headsets go, I am now settled with Hope. Slotted crown race, Head Doctor, sealed cups, bearings replaceable by hand - what else do I need? :)
 

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Old man on a bike
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thedumbopinion said:
I agree with the "its just name recognition" but I just bought a Specialized and there are a lot of nice little decals on the bike.
There, fixed it for you. ;)
 

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It can also go the other way. Look at all the people who would look at a mongoose and automatically call it crap. Of course Mongoose make many good bikes but the wallmart ones gives it somewhat of a bad rap.

I have one of the cheaper specialized (rockhopper) as my starter bike. I still think it's a great bike. Maybe not the best value for the price but as a starter bike it was really decent. That being said, if a brand is seen as a good bike brand it would go against their interest to make a horrible bike. This is why Ferrari does not make a crappy car. Picking a brand name might not be the best way to get good value but might help a non-expert filter scams and other crappy deals.

This is also why great little brands usually don't appeal to the average consumer until they get recognition from the experts who end up recommending in the press. Aka, consumer reports is where most look for advice on buying things.
 

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Bikes are personal items. People get defensive when someone says they're bike is the best. Its that deep down stubborn mentality everyone has. I think everyone just try's to justify why one brand or another is crap because of this.
 

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meow, meow.
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Razorfish, that's a good question.

Schools don't teach people to be inquisitive. On the contrary, schools (I'm talking about the typical ones, those that don't aim to educate future engineers and scientists) present students with a closed on itself, non-contradictory view of reality. It takes a very inquisitive mind (which there is a few of) to break through this barrier.

The barrier is ignorance that looks like comforting knowledge from inside. And it is created intentionally: a system as complex as modern society demands a class of "worker ants". Those who follow orders and don't ask questions. Those who behave predictably. It can be called blissful ignorance; it also can be called fascism.
 

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Token Hillbilly
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grantheppes said:
Ok this is more of a rant, not saying anything for these companies but, why do people who are not bike enthusiasts seem to think that just because a bike says, Specialized, Trek, etc that it is a nice bike.

Being at a college campus in the city and seeing a vast variety of bikes locked up with cable locks to bike racks (lol), it makes me a little frustrated when someone sees a bike like these companies and go, oh nice. Many of them are pieces of junk!

Rrrg, someone make me feel better about dumb people!

This is also very common in this new Fixie trend with conversion bikes, see all sorts of **** frames advertised on craigslist as name brand!
I'm gonna play devil's advocate here for just a moment.

Possible answer A.
I, myself, have not been in the biking (mtb, or road) scene long. I started this past spring, and upon even considering the idea, had no idea where to start. If it cost much over $150 I thought it must be some sort of superbike. Well, a lot of those "superbikes", were entry level Trek, Specialized, and Fishers at our LBS. I knew some names, but I didn't know specifics. It wasn't until after some study of the subject that I finally had enough insight to understand what a crappy configuration vs a good one.

Possible answer B.
I was a college kid once too. I was broke... lived on ramen noodles... the whole bit... and any piece of property I owned was very valuable to me. Locking it up would have been mandatory because I simply couldn't afford to buy a replacement if it got stolen. Especially if I had managed to get a bike with some street cred.

Possible answer C.
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. My Ferrari may not be to you what it is to me... but I still like it nonetheless. Example.. I drive a 2003 Dodge Dakota Quad-cab that I bought used. I love the truck. It's perfect for me and what I do. Somebody else driving a brand-new $90k house payment on wheels may look down on me, but y'know... while I could afford more, it suits me fine.

Possible answer D.
People have to ride crappy bikes to keep the industry going as a whole. More people ride a entry level ride than a $9k+ride.

Possible answer E.
All of the above?

Ya gotta remember... not everybody who rides a bike is an expert, or digs it as much as we do. :thumbsup:
 

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meow, meow.
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Razorfish said:
Good retort but I'm only a worker bee so I have no idea what you just said.
I did not intend to sound as if I were somehow excluded from school brainwashing. I weren't. I clearly remember having this sense of omniscience (too strong a word... but shorter than "comforting sufficiency of knowledge, both in depth and in circumference").
 
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