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Old 02-06-08, 10:33 PM   #1
w2brdbkr
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Motobecane good or bad?

My friend & I went looking at bikes again this weekend & I like the Specialized Roubaix with the carbon fiber seat stay, seat post, & forks because it is in my price range.

He works with a gal that her & her husband are big time bike riders, in fact her husband races bikes & he told us about a web site that sells Motobecane bikes & we can buy a full carbon fiber bike there for about the same price as the Specialized Roubaix. He said we need to buy off the internet & he will fit the bikes for us & do any adjustments that we need. With buying off the internet we would save on tax, there is no freight but my biggest question is; are the Motobecane bikes a quality bike???

In there adds they compare there bike to the Roubaix, but then they are trying to sell there bike. The other nice thing about the Motobecane is it has some Ultegra & 105 where the Specialized is all 105 components.

Are the Motobecane a quality bike?
The two styles we are looking at are;
Immortal Pro
Century Elite
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Old 02-06-08, 11:07 PM   #2
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Great deal. Good bikes. Not the same as a local bike shop.
Here's a like to all my blog posts, from buying to unboxing to a 100 hour ride report on my Motobecane.

http://ccorlew.blogspot.com/search/label/Motobecane
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Old 02-07-08, 06:49 AM   #3
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Hop on over to the Road forum and post this, then put on a helmet and safety goggles and watch the c#$p fly.
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Old 02-07-08, 07:10 AM   #4
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I am very happy with my Windsor Touring (same company as the Motobecane). We actually bought three of them and rode them cross country (my daughter, a friend, and myself). We are quite satisfied after a gearing change and found them to be a very good value.

I have friends at work who have Motobecanes who are also very happy with their choice.

See more detail on our experiences with our bikes from Bikes Direct at:
http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/staehling2007

I don't understand the venom about these over on the road forum.
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Old 02-07-08, 10:10 AM   #5
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See more detail on our experiences with our bikes from Bikes Direct at:
http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/staehling2007

I don't understand the venom about these over on the road forum.
Most roadies are into brand names and paying premium prices for them. They also expect everyone else to do the same. Buying a bike from bikes direct takes out the middle man, premium prices, and ignores brand naming. Consequently they feel screwed and there only recourse is to speak poorly of anyone not playing the brand name game. Just ignore them. I quit reading the road forum long ago.
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Old 02-07-08, 11:50 AM   #6
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I always look for these threads as I like to state it again and again.

Mine was from Performance Bike, Tirreno. Mine has the aluminum frame with carbon seat stay, carbon fiber fork and alloy carbon seat post (carbon outside, aluminum on the inside). I am on my second set of tires almost hitting 3,000 miles since August 2007, its my first time on a bike. I have done 75 mile rides, climbed 2,400 feet on beautiful Mt. Tam. One of my main satisfactions is passing people who have Colnagos, BMC, LOOK, OCLV, Bianchi... Its makes me vomit when I hear them bragging about correct fitting, the ryde feel (almost a rant), this is best for climbing, the other one for centuries, bla bla...

I have tried a few carbon bikes and yes it is so very true the feel is amazing, will it help me climb better? Definitely not, will it increase my VO2 max? OF course not.

I have had the regular dork who pulls besides me with his High end OCLV, stares at my bike. You will be amazed how many posers are on high end bikes, only a handful are hardcore cyclists. Many riders have have sprinted with, shared hill attacks and I think the most humiliating part is they cannot blame the bike when I am still riding besides them. I am not Mancini or even qualify for a half iron-man, the bike does not mean crap thats all I got to say.
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Old 02-07-08, 11:51 AM   #7
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Well, it is true that these are generic bikes that have names slapped on them. Names of old companies from which the importers purchased naming rights.

That said, it doesn't make them bad bikes. They provide detailed component lists, which can be compared to any bike company's products. Usually their components are very competitive in their prices ranges.

So it is a matter of what you are getting as a frame. You have no idea where the frames come from. There is no large company with a reputation to protect, or a widespread service network standing behind the frames. But as many excellent frames are build in Asian plants, it goes that these could be as good as what others are offering. Or they could be of lower quality. No way to really know unless someone buys several different bikes and cuts them up to compare.

Is a Motobecane frame going to be the equal of a Specialized Roubaix frame? Can't say for sure. It seems unlikely to me that it would be just as good, in the same rough price ranges, because Specialized has a significant R&D program, with several frame designers employed. They invest a lot into frame research and have several unique frame designs. Some are tweaked for performance, others for comfort. And they expect the shops selling them to provide expertise in fitting the right frame to your needs.

But does that mean the Motobecane (or whatever decal they stick on it) isn't a good/decent frame? No. It is more likely to be a standard / tried & true frame design that has been around for a while. If you know what you are doing and know what works for you and they have a model that matches your preferences, then you could get a pretty good deal.
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Old 02-07-08, 11:59 AM   #8
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If you can get through the prejudice- you might find usefull comments below.

motobecane??
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Old 02-07-08, 12:04 PM   #9
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I quit reading the road forum long ago.
Me too.

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You will be amazed how many posers are on high end bikes, only a handful are hardcore cyclists. Many riders have have sprinted with, shared hill attacks and I think the most humiliating part is they cannot blame the bike when I am still riding besides them.
It is especially funny when I am on my touring bike, racks, fenders, and all.

At a recent century we (both of us on touring bikes) just rode our comfortable pace and this one group of riders would knock themselves out to be in front of us, but never got out of sight all day. We just continued at our normal pace until they finally burned out at about 80 miles or so and we rolled by them still just comfortably cruising They seemed to think it was a real slap in their face.
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Old 02-07-08, 12:12 PM   #10
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You will be hard pressed to find a better bike than the imortal pro at an equivalent price.
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Old 02-07-08, 12:36 PM   #11
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Me too.


It is especially funny when I am on my touring bike, racks, fenders, and all.

At a recent century we (both of us on touring bikes) just rode our comfortable pace and this one group of riders would knock themselves out to be in front of us, but never got out of sight all day. We just continued at our normal pace until they finally burned out at about 80 miles or so and we rolled by them still just comfortably cruising They seemed to think it was a real slap in their face.
I tour myself and it's fun to have some roadie or a group of them pass me only to catch them an hour or so later drinking energy drinks or chewing on energy bars while I just pass them at my steady, never get off the bike, keep moving pace.
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Old 02-07-08, 12:54 PM   #12
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Motobecane is much like Schwinn they make a variety of bikes but have gotten labeled as 'mass produced' since they went through a downturn in product quality in the past. I am sure that their CF bikes are probably made by the same guys in China and Taiwan that make 95% of CF frames. Many people buy products based on value and others like the comfort and status of name brand. This is why some people buy Lexus and others Ford.

Just check out their warranty, with a CF bike I feel better with a good Mfg and crash warranty program but I expect Calfee will repair a a Motobecane as well as a Colnago.
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Old 02-07-08, 01:07 PM   #13
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Looked at the specs and there is nothoing that would not disgrace a good bike- Only the 3 usuals on unknowns--- may take some sorting to get it right for you----and watch out for the tyres and the saddle- I think they could bite.
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Old 02-07-08, 01:11 PM   #14
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For $100 more you could get a Douglas Fusion Ultegra SL from Colorado Cyclist which although not a full CF frame is possibly a better bike backed by a high end bike shop.
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Old 02-07-08, 01:12 PM   #15
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He said we need to buy off the internet & he will fit the bikes for us & do any adjustments that we need.
This is the most important part of your question, If he can properly help you and make sure everything is working and adjusted, then why not save money.
The main advantage to buying local is that most local bike shops will warranty there product and fit, and will be there to help you.
It's like that HR Block ad, "you've got people", not just a box to ask questions to.
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Old 02-07-08, 09:30 PM   #16
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Thanks everyone for not giving me a hard time like they might over on the road bike forum.

I just want to get a good bike at a good price & being able to get a full carbon for the same price as a alum/carbon seat stay, fork combo is very tempting.

I figure I'm not getting any younger & my body won't take those bumps all day like they might have 20 years ago so why not get the carbon even if it is overkill for what I need, at least I'll have a softer/smoother ride....

Tonight my wife & I stopped at a LBS that sells Trex & they have a last years model (60cm) that they would sell around the $1,200.00 price range & it is alum/carbon fork, seat stay & has a combo of 105/Ultegra components. The guy said they would need to measure me but he thought a 60cm would be more my size then the 58cm Specialized. Hopefully if the weather is nice I can go down this weekend & check it out as well.
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Old 02-08-08, 01:53 AM   #17
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I tour myself and it's fun to have some roadie or a group of them pass me only to catch them an hour or so later drinking energy drinks or chewing on energy bars while I just pass them at my steady, never get off the bike, keep moving pace.
This morning as I rode along the Santa Ana River Trail there was a 50+ guy on a new all carbon Cannondale. Really a beautiful bike and I have to admit to coveting his new bike. Shoot, I dream of owning and riding a all carbon bike. Not going to happen any time soon. But, hey I've got a great touring bike all decked out that fits me great, is comfortable, heavy and all steel. Orange County California is the home of conspicuous consumption (Kind of the the Road Bike Thread) - bikes, cars, houses, boats, breasts (women only), plastic surgery, steroids and ...................

I read an article about the evolution of mountain bikes and a tremendous amount has been spent on marketing (some call it hype) and full suspensions, etc. I see guys on high end $ 3,000 to 6,000 mountain bikes that they will never get the real benefits of their full suspension, let alone load up the front fork. I would rather have an old early 90's Cannondale mountain bike with no front suspension, let alone a back. Ned Overend seemed to do great on this type of bike.

How much do we all end up spending on bikes and components that most of the cost is a result of advertising and marketing hype vs. quality that really isn't any better than the quality steel bikes of yesterday. Lance Armstrong might be able to tell the difference, but but I can't. I'm afraid it is way to much!

So, I'll keep looking for a quality older road bike. One I can afford and enjoy riding for a change of pace from the touring bike.
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Old 02-08-08, 06:02 AM   #18
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I figure I'm not getting any younger & my body won't take those bumps all day like they might have 20 years ago so why not get the carbon even if it is overkill for what I need, at least I'll have a softer/smoother ride....
If it's comfort you are looking for why not take a look at the steel frame Jamis Quest, it should be in your price range and Jamis have possibly the best bang for your buck. Although obviously not as light as CF, steel has many advantages.
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Old 02-08-08, 06:56 AM   #19
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You will be hard pressed to find a better bike than the imortal pro at an equivalent price.
I'm just not sure I could ever buy a bike with a name like that, unless it was obviously easy to peel the decals off.
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Old 02-08-08, 06:58 AM   #20
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I was at the LBS yesterday and he was offering a new 2007 Giant TCR C2 for $1800. There are all sorts of great deals around at this time of year.
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Old 02-08-08, 07:24 AM   #21
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I'm just not sure I could ever buy a bike with a name like that, unless it was obviously easy to peel the decals off.
I think the bike comes with the decals not applied but included especially for guys like you. Seriously.

I'm mostly riding a fuji team (carbon). The ride is a little softer than my son's aluminum w/ carbon fork jamis or my 80s all steel derosa. The bottom bracket is much stiffer on the fuji than the derosa. I can easily flex the BB on the derosa and I am not a big guy (climber not a sprinter). I have a lot more confidence descending at speed (45+ mph) on the derosa though. I am not sure if this is because I get more feedback from it or just because I've been riding it for 25 years.

At the time I bought my fuji BD was only offering carbon frames in 55 or 57 and I wanted a 56. The fuji came in 56 and it was cheap, cheap enough that I was able junk the components that came on it and replace them with what I wanted and still spent less than what a trek or specialized would have cost.

If it hadn't been for the sizing issue I'd probably be riding a BD or Pedalforce bike now. Since I bought my plastic bike they have both started offering 56s.

Interestingly, PF doesn't seem to bring out the haterz they way BD does.
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Old 02-08-08, 07:39 AM   #22
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Is a Motobecane frame going to be the equal of a Specialized Roubaix frame?
I think Specialized is an interesting choice here as they have always outsourced all of their manufacturing. Other companies shifted production from in house to outside. A few still make stuff: the madones are made in Wisconsin (the rest of the trek family come from OEMs in asia), c'dale, derosa, look has their own plant in algeria.

In the case of motobecane, a guy who was a large bike retailer thought there was money to be made as a mfgr of bicycles (in the exact same sense that Specialized is a mfgr), so he bought some defunct brand names (Moto, Windsor, etc), shopped some specs around the OEMs in asia and brought several lines of bikes to market, selling direct via the intarweb and through his retail stores. For some reason (that I don't get) people get all worked up about this.
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Old 02-08-08, 08:52 AM   #23
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I read an article about the evolution of mountain bikes and a tremendous amount has been spent on marketing (some call it hype) and full suspensions, etc. I see guys on high end $ 3,000 to 6,000 mountain bikes that they will never get the real benefits of their full suspension, let alone load up the front fork. I would rather have an old early 90's Cannondale mountain bike with no front suspension, let alone a back. Ned Overend seemed to do great on this type of bike.
Then again, Ned is now designing and racing full suspension bikes for Specialized.

While I agree there is a lot of hype involved in promoting the "improvements" in bike designs and materials, I think the truth lies somewhere between the extremes of saying the new is vastly superior to the old and saying that the improvements are all hype.
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Old 02-08-08, 11:32 AM   #24
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I think Specialized is an interesting choice here as they have always outsourced all of their manufacturing. Other companies shifted production from in house to outside. A few still make stuff: the madones are made in Wisconsin (the rest of the trek family come from OEMs in asia), c'dale, derosa, look has their own plant in algeria.

In the case of motobecane, a guy who was a large bike retailer thought there was money to be made as a mfgr of bicycles (in the exact same sense that Specialized is a mfgr), so he bought some defunct brand names (Moto, Windsor, etc), shopped some specs around the OEMs in asia and brought several lines of bikes to market, selling direct via the intarweb and through his retail stores. For some reason (that I don't get) people get all worked up about this.
Most bike manufacture is in Asia these days, including plenty of high end status symbol bikes like Cervelo and Wilier. So no reason to fault Bikesdirect for that.

On the other hand, consider their cheesy website, use of defunct brand names like Motobecane in an attempt to give their product cachet, constant trumpeting how much their prices are below "list" when there is actually no "list" price, bs marketing like this (quoted from their ad for the "Motobecane Immortal Spirit")": "Plush riding, sweet handling High Modulus Carbon fiber Monocoque frame/fork
Tour de France Winning Professional Grade Technology"...when of course this bike has nothing to do with the Tour de France.....I think these are some of the things that get people worked up. When I see bs about "list" prices and misleading statements about "Tour de France Winning" technology, I have to wonder what else they may be misleading me about. The frames may well be fine, but they as a business they seem to go out of their way to inspire distrust.

If they avoided this crap and just played it straight I expect you'd never hear a complaint. Somebody mentioned Pedal Force and they are the perfect example. No bogus list prices, no misleading claims on their website...no haters over on the Road Bike forum.
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Old 02-08-08, 12:51 PM   #25
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I was at the LBS yesterday and he was offering a new 2007 Giant TCR C2 for $1800. There are all sorts of great deals around at this time of year.
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And that is one well specced and comfortable bike that I KNOW works. For that price- They are almost giving it away. In fact that is almost down to the cost of the Frame alone.

http://www.giant-bicycles.com/en-US/...ad/1236/29252/


And it is a better colour than my one.

I ride aluminium and I ride C.F. On the comfort side there is very little difference due to Both having C.F.Forks and Seatpost. C.F.forks and post make a lot of difference to an aluminium frame.
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