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  1. #1
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    Any made in USA bikes left?

    Wife has been looking for a bike (anything with an upright seating position considered and a 20-22" frame) at a reasonable price. Worksman www.worksman.com sells industrial/cruiser type bikes but was wondering if any other American made brands were still in existence at a reasonable price. All the local bike shops sell made in China bikes, which I find disturbing since many sell for $500+. Where's the savings passed to the customer with the made in China trend? Thanks in advance!

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    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cousincletus
    Wife has been looking for a bike (anything with an upright seating position considered and a 20-22" frame) at a reasonable price. Worksman www.worksman.com sells industrial/cruiser type bikes but was wondering if any other American made brands were still in existence at a reasonable price. All the local bike shops sell made in China bikes, which I find disturbing since many sell for $500+. Where's the savings passed to the customer with the made in China trend? Thanks in advance!
    I doubt you're gonna find a $500 bike using $50/hr labour. The Chinese-made bikes can be had at Wal-Mart for $50-100. The $500 LBS bikes are most likely made in Taiwan with Japanese components (which works better than gruppo Waldo).

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    If you want a true made-in-USA bike, you'll be paying a lot more than $500.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    I doubt you're gonna find a $500 bike using $50/hr labour. The Chinese-made bikes can be had at Wal-Mart for $50-100. The $500 LBS bikes are most likely made in Taiwan with Japanese components (which works better than gruppo Waldo).
    The last volume producer of Frames in Europe closed last year in Denmark and production is now in Taiwan. Quite a few small volume producers about but they do not make low end bikes. I normally buy a new bike every couple of years and ALL bikes are getting cheaper. I bought a Road bike this year and it is cheap end- Around $800. I have been biking for 15 years and I cannot see how a bike with that spec can be that cheap. Good groupset- good wheels- good components and a well made frame.

    Taiwan is set up to make frames. Their production costs are minimal- in some cases the material cost of the tubing will be more than they charge for labour. And their labour is cheap. So the major cost in assembling a bike has gone. Same with wheels- Volume machine produced wheels are made for O.E. fitment And as to what Shimano is knocking their groupsets out at is any-bodies guess.

    The old Thing we had of "Made in Hong Kong" has changed to "Made in Taiwan"-- But with Quality. If you want the rubbish now you do have to look further as even the Chinese are learning to manufacture quality nowadays.

    Problem is that if you want a Good welder to build a frame -Then he is going to want Good money for quite a few hours- and he will have to be a GOOD welder to build as good as the Taiwanese Automated building. Same with the wheels- Although it is quality that a wheel builder has over a machine. He will be more expensive but The quality is superb.

    You want a hand made bike made in the US? So would I but I cannot afford one.
    Last edited by stapfam; 12-11-06 at 01:55 PM.
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    I doubt you will find a 100% American bike. Consider SRAM parts and bikes designed in the US.

    Swift? try xootr.com

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    A lot of really nice bikes are made in Taiwan. As for savings, they would be more expensive if made here, and yes, cheaper still if made in China. This is what we live with. Globalization, and the loss of American jobs. I don't like it, but when I bought a bike, the recumbent I wanted was made in Taiwan. An equivalent american made bike was $700.00 more. What can you do?

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    There are plenty of nice N American made bikes, but since they are craftsman built works of art, the prices start at around $2000. They are built to individual customer requirements, so if you want upright seating position and relaxed handling they will give you exactly that.

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    Senior Member Ziemas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stapfam
    The last volume producer of Frames in Europe closed last year in Denmark and production is now in Taiwan. Quite a few small volume producers about but they do not make low end bikes. I normally buy a new bike every couple of years and ALL bikes are getting cheaper. I bought a Road bike this year and it is cheap end- Around $800. I have been biking for 15 years and I cannot see how a bike with that spec can be that cheap. Good groupset- good wheels- good components and a well made frame.

    Taiwan is set up to make frames. Their production costs are minimal- in some cases the material cost of the tubing will be more than they charge for labour. And their labour is cheap. So the major cost in assembling a bike has gone. Same with wheels- Volume machine produced wheels are made for O.E. fitment And as to what Shimano is knocking their groupsets out at is any-bodies guess.

    The old Thing we had of "Made in Hong Kong" has changed to "Made in Taiwan"-- But with Quality. If you want the rubbish now you do have to look further as even the Chinese are learning to manufacture quality nowadays.

    Problem is that if you want a Good welder to build a frame -Then he is going to want Good money for quite a few hours- and he will have to be a GOOD welder to build as good as the Taiwanese Automated building. Same with the wheels- Although it is quality that a wheel builder has over a machine. He will be more expensive but The quality is superb.

    You want a hand made bike made in the US? So would I but I cannot afford one.
    Not so. Both Bregamont and Fort still make their frames in the EU and neither can be called a high end bike. I'm sure there are others as well.

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    I'm surprised no one's mentioned cannondale. Yes, the components are not made in the usa, but then again, not many are.

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    The alloy frames are, but do they build the CF frames here?

    The main contributor to cost differences is the differences in the local economies. Buying a house & food in other areas are minimal compared to the U.S. Wages are then pegged to the local economy. In the short term, yea it hurts us to move our money & jobs abroad. But it helps the less-developed nations. We have to be careful about destroying their economy with rampant inflation by pumping in too much money too quickly to too few people. In the long run, it'll bring them up to our level. Look at what's happened to Japan in just 50-years, then HK & Taiwan. China's rapidly moving up next and simply cannot be ignored. No one is going to be able to fight it, just gotta find a way to work with the progress.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Milice's Avatar
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    My 2006 trek xo1 is american made.

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    The majority of people in the PRC, the rural majority, are not profiting from all this, just the Stalinist-military ruling class & a small urban elite. Keep that in mind when you're tempted to contribute to their "progress". It's only a question of time before they're the next designated Evil Empire & you or your kids are expected to fight them. It's called "free trade".

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  13. #13
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Being a capitalist, I'm all for free-trade. The fewer restrictions on trade the better. Look at the results of NAFTA a decade later. We've got the Japanese building cars in NA for export and they ship more cars out of America than GM. Meanwhile the big-3 are closing down Detroit and moving those plants to Canada and Mexico. Gives us consumers lower-prices for the same products or even lower-prices for lower-end stuff, or higher-quality at the same price, you pick.

    I take it you haven't been to China several times in the past decaded huh? Most people's impression of China is through our media and it's about as accurate as foreigner's impression of Americans as living out of trailer-parks, wearing fish-nets on our heads and driving decades old Cutlasses. Their 3-gorges dam project is employing a huge group of highly-skilled workers; the economic benefits are rippling through their economy (similar to the Hoover dam & New Deal projects here). You should see the massive growth of suburbs and masses of farmers moving into the middle-class in just the past decade alone.

    The pricing-differences are only temporary, as we pump more money into their economy, they're building and buying a tonne. Look at what they did to the pricing of steel this past year. Their growth will bring with it a certain amount of inflation and raise their costs of production.

    IHT - China starts to ship higher costs abroad
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    Last edited by DannoXYZ; 12-11-06 at 09:44 PM.

  14. #14
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    Cannondale now makes all of their frames in the USA. The carbon Synapse was made in Tiawain was a short term stopgap measure. Trek only makes thier high end carbin frames in the USA, and not all carbin frames are USA made (TCT 5000).
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    LeMonds spine bikes and carbon bikes are USA made.
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  16. #16
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    When you say Made in the USA that could be open to interpritation. Made in the USA does not have the same meaning it once did. At one time it meant all materials & manufacturing processes were done here in the U.S. borders, so it truely meant Made in the USA. Now & for a long time products are not truely made in the USA. For example the steel a bike frame is made of could easily be from imported steel from China, Japan or Russia. The same goes for the leather that covers a Brooks saddle. The plastic that makes the cable housings could be from a foreign country as could the steel cables themselves.

    When it comes to the manufacturing of products the sub assemblies could easily be made in a foreign country, & joined with the final product here in the USA. A good example of that is the derailers, shifting & brake assemblies. Oh & those rubber grips or cork tape, I doubt the were made in the USA, or that the material to make them is domestically produced.

    Bottom line, don't fool yourself when you say you want something "Made in the USA". Anymore now it is not completely true. More like produced & bought from somewhere else & assembled in the USA.

  17. #17
    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Good examples, here's another one. There's a free-trade zone along the coast between Port Hueneme all the way down to the port of Long Beach. Rather than dropping of BMWs in Los Angeles where they will be assessed an import-duty, they are dropped off anywhere along this free-trade zone, usually Oxnard or Port Hueneme. These cars are delivered "incomplete" and the final-assembly of installing the rear-view mirrors are done with US-labour. This qualifies these BMWs to be tagged as "Made in USA". Quite a far cry from the Hondas and Toyotas that are made from scratch here on U.S. soil.

  18. #18
    No longer in Wimbledon... womble's Avatar
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    I suspect this was quite a clever troll.

    Think about it- the OP appears to be asking for $500 US-made bike. Kind of an impossible proposition to start with, no? Likely to launch into a US vs Taiwan quality argument, yes?
    Last edited by womble; 12-12-06 at 04:15 AM.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by cousincletus
    Wife has been looking for a bike (anything with an upright seating position considered and a 20-22" frame) at a reasonable price. Worksman www.worksman.com sells industrial/cruiser type bikes but was wondering if any other American made brands were still in existence at a reasonable price. All the local bike shops sell made in China bikes, which I find disturbing since many sell for $500+. Where's the savings passed to the customer with the made in China trend? Thanks in advance!

    Worksman Cycles and specifically

    Aaron

    Edit: missed the fact you had already seen worksman..(PBC... postin before coffee) Also agree they are heavy and FWIW I was looking at a brand new Worksman Industrial trike yesterday and the welded joints are U-G-L-Y.
    Last edited by wahoonc; 12-12-06 at 06:40 AM.
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    Where are Breezer bikes frames made? Probably in Taiwan/China but they are worth a look if you need a well designed utility bike.

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    Most "Made in USA" bikes are expensive. Cannondale makes all of its aluminum-frame bikes in the USA. Almost all Trek models in the $1,500 to $3,000 range are made in the USA.

    The Worksman bikes are designed for industrial use. Most of their bikes weigh between fifty and seventy pounds. They are fine for a very slooow half mile ride on a level surface, but almost useless for normal riding on streets with hills.

    Many women buy a "first bike" of very low quality, and never move on to a better bike. Folks riding on fifty pound cruisers think that riding a bike is "too hard" and "no fun".

    Buy your wife a lower-priced Cannondale bike "Made in the USA". These models weigh around 20 pounds and your wife will fall in love with cycling. A Cannondale, just like a Worksman, can last a lifetime, with proper care.

    By the way, several posters imply that companies such as Trek and Cannondale do very little except "final assembly". Go visit their facilities in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. Millions of dollars in computer equipment for designing and testing frames, forks, and components. Millions of dollars in equipment for making and painting frame tubes and forks. Sophisticated high-tech assembly equipment.

    And, Trek and Cannondale employ hundreds of highly trained and well-paid employees included some of the most educated and experienced engineers in the world. There is simply no comparison in qualitity between frames and forks designed and tested by MIT level engineers in America and the cheap "clones" slapped together by slave labor in Bumfook, China paid about ten cents per hour.
    Last edited by alanbikehouston; 12-12-06 at 06:39 AM.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    Good examples, here's another one. There's a free-trade zone along the coast between Port Hueneme all the way down to the port of Long Beach. Rather than dropping of BMWs in Los Angeles where they will be assessed an import-duty, they are dropped off anywhere along this free-trade zone, usually Oxnard or Port Hueneme. These cars are delivered "incomplete" and the final-assembly of installing the rear-view mirrors are done with US-labour. This qualifies these BMWs to be tagged as "Made in USA". Quite a far cry from the Hondas and Toyotas that are made from scratch here on U.S. soil.
    You are the victim of misinformation. For a product to be labeled "Made in USA", at least 50% of its total wholesale cost most consist of "Made in USA" material or "Made in USA" labor. Having an American put a mirror on a BMW will not earn that vehicle a "Made in USA" label.

    At one time, a "top brand" of jeans made the jeans in Mexico, but put on the pockets in El Paso, Texas. And, the jeans could truthfully be labeled "Made in USA". They had a wholesale value of about ten dollars. Of that ten dollars, about three dollars was the "Made in USA" cotton fabric. Another three dollars was the cost of putting on the pockets, putting on the labels, and packing for shipping. So, although 90% of the assembly was done in Mexico, 60% of the wholesale cost was American materials and labor.

    Cannondale bikes are a similar example. Their drivetrains and brakes are usually made in Asia. But, the aluminum frame components are made in the USA. The frame is built is the USA. The assembly of the bike is done in the USA. So, on a typical Cannondale bike, somewhere between 60% and 80% of the wholesale cost represents American materials and labor.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    The alloy frames are, but do they build the CF frames here?
    YES.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
    You are the victim of misinformation. For a product to be labeled "Made in USA", at least 50% of its total wholesale cost most consist of "Made in USA" material or "Made in USA" labor. Having an American put a mirror on a BMW will not earn that vehicle a "Made in USA" label.
    Like many other similar situations the determining factor is how creative your accountants are. Could you not just create a separate company BMW USA and sell them the cars for a cent each. Then the cost of attaching the wing mirrors would make up almost all the wholesale price of the car from the point of view of BMW USA.

    There are certainly similar loopholes or a lack of enforcement and punishment. Working in the manufacturing industry I've seen enough to say Made in USA means nothing unless you actually research the products manufacture.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by alanbikehouston
    By the way, several posters imply that companies such as Trek and Cannondale do very little except "final assembly". Go visit their facilities in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania. Millions of dollars in computer equipment for designing and testing frames, forks, and components. Millions of dollars in equipment for making and painting frame tubes and forks. Sophisticated high-tech assembly equipment.

    And, Trek and Cannondale employ hundreds of highly trained and well-paid employees included some of the most educated and experienced engineers in the world. There is simply no comparison in qualitity between frames and forks designed and tested by MIT level engineers in America and the cheap "clones" slapped together by slave labor in Bumfook, China paid about ten cents per hour.
    I say it once again, Cannondale forks are made in China! Trust me no MIT educated engineer works for Cannondale. As for quality of education, umm yeah.... I think average high school graduate of China, Russia, Japan is more educated then high school graduate here in good old U.S.A.
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