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Old 11-08-10, 05:21 AM   #1
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VO competition

Looks like the Rivendell, Kogswell, VO niche market has another player. Who said everyone wants a CF bike?

PS Kogswell is no more but they did make a nice bike. Maybe Jan Heine will succeed where others have failed. Good luck

http://www.compasscycle.com/Home.html
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Old 11-08-10, 07:06 AM   #2
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Based upon my experience with Kogswell, I'm neither surprised nor sad that they went out of business.

I don't think this should be counted as "new" competition, as BQP was selling the same items through their site for a while. Perhaps they are planning on expending the items that they're carrying...

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Old 11-08-10, 08:32 AM   #3
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jan heine has been selling those components under the bicycle quarterly name for years.

if you're listing businesses like this, dont forget rene herse: http://www.renehersestore.com/servle...art_id=7077380

and long leaf bicycles: http://www.longleafbicycles.com/

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Old 11-08-10, 09:06 AM   #4
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jan heine has been selling those components under the bicycle quarterly name for years.

if you're listing businesses like this, dont forget rene herse: http://www.renehersestore.com/servle...art_id=7077380

and long leaf bicycles: http://www.longleafbicycles.com/
+1 its just a new name for the old Web Store for Bicycle Quarterly...and they spiffed it up very slightly.

renehersestore.com is a good resource too. I've ordered TA stuff and Grand Bois Tires from Mike there a few times this past summer. He's a really nice guy and very helpful towards getting the right thing you need. They seem to have a bunch of random stock that never makes it to the web store, so if you call and talk to him you might find something you aren't seeing online.
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Old 11-08-10, 01:00 PM   #5
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Velo-Orange just shipped a big pile of stuff off to QBP (this is my supposition given one of the recent VO blog posts and the sudden appaerace of their stuff on QBP's website). As a VO dealer, I am not sure how I feel about this as this was one area of the market that I had in town that the other shops did not. The fact is, success will bring competition. Being first does not equate to being better, but it does provide some pedigree. Many have argued that Chris simply built upon the Rivendell model. Maybe true, maybe not, as there are significant differences in philosophy between those companies. However, I think it is terrific for them and am glad for their apparent success. Furthermore, I like the niche that many of their products fill.
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Old 11-08-10, 03:24 PM   #6
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Many have argued that Chris simply built upon the Rivendell model. Maybe true, maybe not, as there are significant differences in philosophy between those companies. However, I think it is terrific for them and am glad for their apparent success. Furthermore, I like the niche that many of their products fill.
VO, Rivendell and Jan's new company have virtually identical mission statements. What differences in philosophy do you mean?
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Old 11-09-10, 03:46 AM   #7
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I see most of the businesses mentioned as supplementary to one another, rather than as competition.
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Old 11-09-10, 05:52 AM   #8
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VO, Rivendell and Jan's new company have virtually identical mission statements. What differences in philosophy do you mean?
Mission statements do not equal philosophy. I would also assert that VO's and Jan's target are much more in sync than either with Rivendell. As Veloria states, I too think they are more supplementary.
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Old 11-11-10, 01:32 PM   #9
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i kind of see VO and rivendell as complementary rather than competitive, although obviously there is some niche overlap. both VO and rivendell, in my opinion, embrace similar philosophies regarding cycling, but rivendell seems to have more of a function-over-form philosophy with the components and accessories they offer. i.e., they like to offer what works in a tried-and-true fashion without a direct connection to a particular style, and there's often something quirky and "off" about their aesthetics (again, just my opinion!). jan and VO seem to be more influenced by classic french design, and many of VO's products seek to specifically emulate it. this is not to say that their products are superficial and only look good. some of their items are clear winners, and lord knows i've spent more than i care to admit on VO's wares. i've never really bought much from rivendell. i think their nitto albatross bars are the only rivendell-designed product i've bought.
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Old 11-11-10, 01:45 PM   #10
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i kind of see VO and rivendell as complementary rather than competitive, although obviously there is some niche overlap. both VO and rivendell, in my opinion, embrace similar philosophies regarding cycling, but rivendell seems to have more of a function-over-form philosophy with the components and accessories they offer. i.e., they like to offer what works in a tried-and-true fashion without a direct connection to a particular style, and there's often something quirky and "off" about their aesthetics (again, just my opinion!). jan and VO seem to be more influenced by classic french design, and many of VO's products seek to specifically emulate it. this is not to say that their products are superficial and only look good. some of their items are clear winners, and lord knows i've spent more than i care to admit on VO's wares. i've never really bought much from rivendell. i think their nitto albatross bars are the only rivendell-designed product i've bought.
Well put. I'm more attracted to the products VO offers than those from Rivendell. We don't have "fire roads" where I live and I don't need a road bike with as much clearance as they build into their frames. It's also not my style to put plastic fenders on a $2,000 frame. When I think of Rivendell I think of California. That's not good or bad, it's just not me.
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Old 11-11-10, 02:09 PM   #11
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Well put. I'm more attracted to the products VO offers than those from Rivendell. We don't have "fire roads" where I live and I don't need a road bike with as much clearance as they build into their frames. It's also not my style to put plastic fenders on a $2,000 frame. When I think of Rivendell I think of California. That's not good or bad, it's just not me.
exactly! i was going to use fenders as a perfect example, but figured my post was long-winded enough as is . i think rivendell frames are simply beautiful: tasteful, nice attention to detail, and very thoughtfully designed. i wouldn't hesitate to proudly own and ride one if one fell in my lap. however, many of the riv builds i see kind of break that beauty (including some of the in-house examples that rivendell provides on their website) by not carefully choosing components to provide aesthetic continuity. velouria's sam hillborne is a notable exception, as she carefully selected the parts with which she built it up to maintain that continuity, as well as being time-proven components. of course, at the opposite extreme, i see some VO builds that border on being parodies of the classic french design because they end up looking more french than real french bikes, without a tried-and-true philosophy to the choice of components, and i wonder whether these bikes can truly stand up to hard use, or if they're simply fashion statements.

i'm not "knocking" either company. i think each has some great offerings, and there's some overlap. i consider myself fortunate that companies like them exist.
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Old 11-11-10, 02:11 PM   #12
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I predict we'll start to see more faux-constructeur bikes on Flickr...
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Old 11-11-10, 02:47 PM   #13
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Interesting... tires look good!
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Old 11-11-10, 03:17 PM   #14
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Those Grand Bois tires don't just look good. They are amazing to ride on.

I was concerned about getting flats from using such a lightweight tire, but in the 3+ months I've been commuting on my Grand Bois tires I only got my first flat last week.
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Old 11-11-10, 06:04 PM   #15
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i love them all and am very thankful for VO and rivbike!

there is a large enough market for them all, especially with the rise in local framebuilders (see portland). imo, their "competition" is with the treks, schwinns, etc...especially inside of the LBS. perhaps VO's new deal with QBP will bring awareness to companies like these outside of the cycling "norm".
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Old 11-11-10, 06:14 PM   #16
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perhaps VO's new deal with QBP will bring awareness to companies like these outside of the cycling "norm".
can someone explain to me just what QBP is? i think they are some sort of major distributor, but beyond that, is there something i'm missing? by signing up with QBP, does that mean that VO will now be stocked at LBSs everywhere?
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Old 11-11-10, 06:51 PM   #17
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can someone explain to me just what QBP is? i think they are some sort of major distributor, but beyond that, is there something i'm missing? by signing up with QBP, does that mean that VO will now be stocked at LBSs everywhere?
http://www.qbp.com/index.html

they also own surly, salsa, and civia.
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Old 11-11-10, 07:10 PM   #18
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Those Grand Bois tires don't just look good. They are amazing to ride on.

I was concerned about getting flats from using such a lightweight tire, but in the 3+ months I've been commuting on my Grand Bois tires I only got my first flat last week.
I have put 1800 miles on my Grand Bois Hetre tires (which admittedly, are more heavy duty than these, but still - 1800 miles). They look the same as they did after my first ride on them. There are barely any signs of wear and (knock on wood) I haven't gotten a single flat so far.
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Old 11-11-10, 09:36 PM   #19
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by signing up with QBP, does that mean that VO will now be stocked at LBSs everywhere?
QBP is probably the largest supplier to LBS's in the country. Infact, I think you will be hard-pressed to find an LBS who does not have an account with them. QPB having VO products available does not mean your LBS will have them in stock, but they will be able to get them withu having a deale account direcly with VO.
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Old 11-11-10, 09:43 PM   #20
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but they will be able to get them withu having a deale account direcly with VO.
Though I personally can't see any reason why someone would do that. Even with shipping, you're bound to get your stuff sooner through VO than through your LBS.
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Old 11-11-10, 09:56 PM   #21
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Though I personally can't see any reason why someone would do that. Even with shipping, you're bound to get your stuff sooner through VO than through your LBS.
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As mentioned earlier, VO was for a while encouraging VO focused dealerships to sell to. Selling to another importer / distributor is interesting, at some point there is a price volume cross that must be tempting for them. It brings a loss of control, and that will be interesting to watch as time passes.
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Old 11-12-10, 10:56 AM   #22
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I see most of the businesses mentioned as supplementary to one another, rather than as competition.
I agree, the more there are, the better it is for us all. There is plenty of room in the market.

Marc
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Old 11-12-10, 11:00 AM   #23
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Though I personally can't see any reason why someone would do that. Even with shipping, you're bound to get your stuff sooner through VO than through your LBS.
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I do it. By ordering VO products through my LBS I am supporting both my LBS and VO (Imports).
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Old 11-12-10, 11:25 AM   #24
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That bike on the front page of the web site is well equipped but looks too busy for me, for some reason. Too many glittery accessories, maybe?

Who makes the Grand Bois tires, anyway?

Zaphod, I came upon a question which I know you can't answer (yet): would Paselas feel any different to you than Grand Bois tires, if you inflated the Paselas to 80 psi? I know that's the pressure you use.
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Old 11-12-10, 03:10 PM   #25
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That bike on the front page of the web site is well equipped but looks too busy for me, for some reason. Too many glittery accessories, maybe?

Who makes the Grand Bois tires, anyway?

Zaphod, I came upon a question which I know you can't answer (yet): would Paselas feel any different to you than Grand Bois tires, if you inflated the Paselas to 80 psi? I know that's the pressure you use.
Grand Bois is the brand developed by I's Bicycle in Japan.

http://www.cyclesgrandbois.com/

I believe the tires are made to spec by Panaracer
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