My main goal is to find a few good sources for more meaningful component information than is generally available on the web from JensonUSA and such as these retailers. Do you mechanics have a secret source of technical info on a part somewhere once you get a part number? Seems like the experienced mechanics here can guess a lot about likely components from the mfg and year. The longer term goal will need to include most "popular" higher end components from the major mfg names like SRAM and Shimano. Is somebody on the web set up to offer more information, maybe even do some testing? I have been googling without much luck. Recent googles seem to show that very little is controlled (yet) by our govt regarding imported bicycle parts (except an eagle eye for lead based pain on bikes for children?).
<< less business and more personal interest > >
Somehow in my early forays into always fascinating Bicycledom I signed up for "Global Services" and must have checked "city bikes" and "electric" and now notices of new products are hitting my mailbox daily. In this early research I just must have gotten fascinated with the whole "Flying Pigeon Corporation" history (mao thought we should have one)/ culture / company thing and find that there are boutiques offering their original(-ish) city bike copy of some English 1930's roadster made robust enough "to carry a pig" on the web in FL, Ann Harbor MI, and CA.
What I find so darned fascinating is that this particular company that had been rolling out basic black - 3rd world - rod activated tire brake / heavy duty / 60 pounder - poorly finished bicycles since the 40's has now put "Research" on the end of their name and are offering a range of Mountain bikes and (I think?) carbon framed road racers etc. I find this (attempt at) quick step evolution of a company from "bikes for the masses" to grappling for dollars against a world with a deep rich history of variety just hugely interesting! And yes, there is a question here - and it is this - what kind of range of (pragmatic) quality / value do their products have in the USA market?? Nobody seems to talk about these machines here(and I've been poking around alot recently) has anybody else run up against these things?.
<...The current situation in China (for my humble understanding) is that electric bikes are starting to catch on with "the masses" in a big way and that the old utility black "FP" models have lost much of their gloss. But the workers work too hard for their money that they are likely to accept junk. Have they come up to "western world" type standards from building for our companies already or are they hitting some bumps and having maybe bigtime transition problems - are we (forbid) maybe actually selling some of our bikes there? Nah, Mao would be turning over in his grave?..>