Author Topic: Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes  (Read 1681 times)

Carbon_Dude

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Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes
« on: August 09, 2016, 08:30:00 PM »
I am starting to run across more and more companies selling bikes with the same frames as forum members buy direct from China and build up themselves. 

It's interesting to see, however, some companies make false claims about where the frames come from.  For example, the person from Deep South (not sure if it was the owner) claimed they make their own carbon frames.

Deep South (USA)
http://www.deepsouthbicyclecompany.com
Not much of a website with pictures of the Chiner drawings of "their own" frames. They do offer a "Lifetime" warranty although I would guess the lifetime of the company might be shorter than the time you own your bike from them.  Although, since they charge about double for the frame, even if you break one and have it replaced under warranty, they are not out anything.

Lamere Cycles (USA)
http://www.lamerecycles.com
At least Lamere is up front that they "import carbon frames and rims directly from the top factories in Asia."  Although notice they say "Asia" and not "China."  Lamere also offers a "lifetime warranty".  They charge about 2-3 times for a CS-036 or a CS-057 frame compared to what Peter charges.  This company has been around for about 3 1/2 years now so at least they have stayed in business for a short while.

Olympia Bikes (Italy)
http://www.olympiacicli.it/en/
They seem to carry a variety of bikes, and their website looks very professional.  They don't seem to sell direct but instead appear to have a dealer network.   In a previous thread, someone else commented that they have been around for many years.  They make the CS-M04 look really nice.  They don't say anything about warranty and don't have any dealers in the US.  I would expect their pricing to be similar to other big brands.

Pricepoint (USA)
(Out of Business)
PricePoint was another one, they would sell Sette carbon frames which looked just like the CS-057 but had a 5 year warranty.  Another case where the warranty doesn't do much good if the company is no longer in business.

Pells (Czech Republic)
http://www.pells.eu/en/bikes/full-suspension-29/f99-xx/rok-2014/
Nice website.  Above link is to a -036 complete bike.

Kelly's Bikes (Slovakia)
http://www.kellysbike.com/INT/bikes-2016/mountain/hardtail-29/stage-90#.V6sNB2XSdE4
5 Year Warranty.  Website does not show pricing.

Superior Bikes (UK)
https://superiorbikes.eu/en/2016/mtb-race/team-29-issue/black-red-white
They claim, "All key manufacturing processes are implemented internally so that we have the best control over the design, construction, painting, wheel building and assembly of our models."  Which sure sounds like they are saying they manufacture their own bikes.

I will update the top of this thread as we find more online bike company startups selling Chiner frames/bikes direct.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2016, 06:26:06 AM by Carbon_Dude »


2017 Trek Stache 9.8 (29+)
2016 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Carbon Comp 6Fattie (27.5+)
2016 Trek Stache 9 (29+) w/upgrades (Sold)
2014 -036 Full Suspension Chiner (Sold)
2013 -057 Hardtail Carbon Chiner (Sold)
Atlanta, GA

Sitar_Ned

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Re: Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2016, 09:51:02 PM »
Hmm, it is interesting to watch how this all unfolds. I can't imagine there would be much profit margin doing this but I could be wrong. I guess they have to rely on consumer ignorance as to how the carbon industry works, otherwise people would just buy direct from China it seems. 

Also, I had no idea Pricepoint went out of business!

Jerryno

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Re: Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2016, 01:30:31 AM »
It is untold secret of many small bike companies that they only paint chiner frames and sell them as own. Sometimes they source frames from different places in Asia.

For example this Pells X99 (http://mtbs.cz/media/2013/12/18/PellsF99_celk1_cl.jpg) was a copy of HongFu FM036. This Pells Duke XTR (http://static.vpress.cz/koloroku/495.jpg) is a HongFu-FM136. Both are highly priced race bikes.

The same with Kellys bikes, Superior, CTM, and many other small bike companies that operate locally here in Europe. It's not only carbon, they source aluminium chiner frames also.

Lanz

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Re: Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes
« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2016, 05:53:18 AM »
Great topic. I remember that someone on a MTBR posted a pic of a guy from a World Cup XC race (Nove Mesto, if i am not mistaking) racing a chinese frame branded by some european manufacturer.

Carbon_Dude

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Re: Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes
« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2016, 06:42:39 AM »
Yes, these shops hope you don't know that anyone can purchase the same carbon frame (direct, from eBay, or Aliexpress) and build your own bike.  The bikes I've seen from Deep South and Lamere look like they purchased the frame from eBay.  No custom paint, matte black finish, with some vinyl stickers slapped on the bike.

Not to mention, if I were going to spend $5k-$6k for a carbon bike, I don't think I'd want a generic looking Chiner.  One guy at the trail, who was riding a Lamere -036, came up to me and asked if my bike was also a Lamere.  He had no clue that I could buy a custom painted frame, with a BSA bottom bracket, and assemble it myself for half the price.

The other issue is warranty service and parts availability.  If I didn't build the bike myself, paid over $5k, had no clue on how to fix it, and had to rely on an online bike shop to fix something under warranty (like the guy I met on the trail), I'd be pretty annoyed.  I never had any real issues with my -057 or -036 but others on our forum have had some issues with things like the pivots on the -036.

The guy who bought my -036 pulled apart the pivots because he thought the linkage had a lot of slop and the rear end of the bike would flex quite a bit under load.  He also said one of the bearings was loose.  I explained to him that the bike was designed to be a lightweight XC bike, they frame was not designed to be super stiff and take a lot of abuse.  My point being, he is coming to me for advice/info on the bike since he doesn't know anything about the Chinese frame, I pointed him to Chinertown but haven't seen him here.

2017 Trek Stache 9.8 (29+)
2016 Specialized Stumpjumper FSR Carbon Comp 6Fattie (27.5+)
2016 Trek Stache 9 (29+) w/upgrades (Sold)
2014 -036 Full Suspension Chiner (Sold)
2013 -057 Hardtail Carbon Chiner (Sold)
Atlanta, GA

cmh

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Re: Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes
« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2016, 09:43:08 AM »
Great topic. I remember that someone on a MTBR posted a pic of a guy from a World Cup XC race (Nove Mesto, if i am not mistaking) racing a chinese frame branded by some european manufacturer.

Lars Forster won the U23 race in Nove Mesto on a Wheeler:



Looks like an 041 except without the cracked seat tube.  ;D
« Last Edit: August 10, 2016, 09:44:54 AM by cmh »

carbonazza

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Re: Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes
« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2016, 11:47:03 AM »
A friend bought a 256 from a french company.
It was giving him more confidence in case of troubles than buying direct  ::)

The price was a bit less than the double, for the same 2 years warranty.
Buying direct is probably not for everyone, and these builders may have a business niche.

Patrick C.

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Re: Bicycle Companies Selling Chiner Bikes
« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2016, 12:43:51 PM »
Another pic was originally posted in the -041 thread, but it didn't have the brand name hidden well enough :)
http://chinertown.com/index.php/topic,602.15.html


It may have looked something like this, from http://www.pinkbike.com/news/the-first-showdown-nove-mesto-xc-world-cup-2015.html