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Old 08-05-14, 08:21 PM   #1
labatt
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Creating a new bike company.. Seeking Your Input!

Hi All -

Hopefully this is OK to post here. If not, please move or delete!

I'm working with a team that is launching a new road bike (not tri bikes, but entry road, exercise road and racing/competition road) company. There are many reasons why this group will succeed, but - unfortunately - I can't really provide details at this point. It will be big news once they go public though!

At this point, I'm working to do some research on aspects of the bike itself. At some point later, I might come back to ask additional questions about customer service, the buying process, etc.

We've always been intrigued by Apple. It's very apparent that they look at HOW there products are used - not just what the product does. Little things like the way the cord wraps onto the AC adapter of the Macbook, or the way the brightness of the Apple logo on the cover of the Macbook changes based upon the brightness of the screen. The packaging they deliver their products in, and many other aspects of their products, are designed to inspire, build confidence and trust, and create fanatical fans.

We're looking to do the same thing with this brand. We have numerous ideas, but we'd love to hear some of yours. If you could answer/discuss a few of these questions we'd really appreciate it!
  1. What do you wish came with your bike when you bought it? (not components, but accessories)
  2. What little things are on your bike now that you find convenient?
  3. What little things are missing from your bike that you wish it had?
  4. Are there any aspects of bike design that truly inspire you? Shape (what kind of shape?), paint, logos, etc.?
  5. Would you have any constructive suggestions for a new company that could create a fanatical following?

Thanks for your input!!

Last edited by labatt; 08-05-14 at 09:14 PM.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:28 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by labatt View Post
Hi All -

Hopefully this is OK to post here. If not, please move or delete!

I'm working with a team that is launching a new road bike company. There are many reasons why this group will succeed, but - unfortunately - I can't really provide details at this point. It will be big news once they go public though!

At this point, I'm working to do some research on aspects of the bike itself. At some point later, I might come back to ask additional questions about customer service, the buying process, etc.

We've always been intrigued by Apple. It's very apparent that they look at HOW there products are used - not just what the product does. Little things like the way the cord wraps onto the AC adapter of the Macbook, or the way the brightness of the Apple logo on the cover of the Macbook changes based upon the brightness of the screen. The packaging they deliver their products in, and many other aspects of their products, are designed to inspire, build confidence and trust, and create fanatical fans.

We're looking to do the same thing with this brand. We have numerous ideas, but we'd love to hear some of yours. If you could answer/discuss a few of these questions we'd really appreciate it!
  1. What do you wish came with your bike when you bought it? (not components, but accessories)
  2. What little things are on your bike now that you find convenient?
  3. What little things are missing from your bike that you wish it had?
  4. Are there any aspects of bike design that truly inspire you? Shape (what kind of shape?), paint, logos, etc.?
  5. Would you have any constructive suggestions for a new company that could create a fanatical following?

Thanks for your input!!
What bicycles do you currently ride? What kinda' miles you do in a week? Do you race?

I'm interested in a lugged, steel frame, 130mm OLD, lightweight, racing geometry but with all the braze-ons for racks and fenders, with downtube shifter bosses, set up with dt shifters, a road triple, and shimano 10 or 11 speed.

That's just me, though.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:31 PM   #3
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[*]What do you wish came with your bike when you bought it? (not components, but accessories).
Better legs.
[*]What little things are on your bike now that you find convenient?
Water bottles
[*]What little things are missing from your bike that you wish it had?
Sometimes I forget my water bottles.
[*]Are there any aspects of bike design that truly inspire you? Shape (what kind of shape?), paint, logos, etc.?
No.
[*]Would you have any constructive suggestions for a new company that could create a fanatical following?
Sponsor a team and have the lead rider win 7 Tours de France in a row.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:32 PM   #4
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What bicycles do you currently ride? What kinda' miles you do in a week? Do you race?

I'm interested in a lugged, steel frame, 130mm OLD, lightweight, racing geometry but with all the braze-ons for racks and fenders, with downtube shifter bosses, set up with dt shifters, a road triple, and shimano 10 or 11 speed.

That's just me, though.
I would like one of those too.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:35 PM   #5
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I'd like a steel fatbike with 4" tires and full suspension and electronic shifting, and I want it to weigh 15 lbs max. And cost $200.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:37 PM   #6
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I want a nice road bike that is light, comfortable to ride and is built with commuting and light touring in mind (e.g. braze-ons and fender mounts).
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Old 08-05-14, 08:38 PM   #7
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  1. What do you wish came with your bike when you bought it? (not components, but accessories)
Chain cleaner, a small quantity of lube, a guide to manufacturer recommendations to things like lube, tires, etc. Basically, give tips to new riders (like myself) who may not know all the little things that you have to care for in a bike. Even a link to GCN's YouTube channel would have been great!


  1. What little things are on your bike now that you find convenient?
Quick release at seat post for adjustments without needing allen keys.


  1. What little things are missing from your bike that you wish it had
Basic tools. I'm new to biking and don't really have tools (student, just moved out).


  1. Are there any aspects of bike design that truly inspire you? Shape (what kind of shape?), paint, logos, etc.?
I like simplistic designs in terms of graphics, logos, and other random text on the frame.

http://www.velospace.org/files/Alta-Bike-white.jpg

vs.

http://cdn3.coresites.mpora.com/rcuk...2-IMG_7652.jpg


  1. Would you have any constructive suggestions for a new company that could create a fanatical following?
Don't look to Apple for their "little things." They're not a successful company for the little things they do, its because of their marketing. Overspend for your marketing.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:42 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by brianmcg123 View Post
Sponsor a team and have the lead rider win 7 Tours de France in a row.
The team I'm working with used to own another company, and that company had several bikes in the Tour de France. They didn't win, but they had several in the top 20 finishers, and ridden by names you'd recognize.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:42 PM   #9
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Do we get a share in your company for giving our opinions/advice or some other form of compensation?
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Old 08-05-14, 08:42 PM   #10
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I'd like a steel fatbike with 4" tires and full suspension and electronic shifting, and I want it to weigh 15 lbs max. And cost $200.
They will have a few different frames, and one of them will actually be steel - but not with 4" tires These are road bikes.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:43 PM   #11
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The team I'm working with used to own another company, and that company had several bikes in the Tour de France. They didn't win, but they had several in the top 20 finishers, and ridden by names you'd recognize.
2nd place is the first loser. Next.
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Old 08-05-14, 08:44 PM   #12
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Do we get a share in your company for giving our opinions/advice or some other form of compensation?
I knew this question would arise at some point, and sorry - the answer is no

But, with constructive contributions, hopefully it will be the perfect bike for you!
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Old 08-05-14, 08:50 PM   #13
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"There are several reasons why it will succeed"

And one why it will fail, Its a road bike company. Good luck with that...
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Old 08-05-14, 08:55 PM   #14
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I knew this question would arise at some point, and sorry - the answer is no

But, with constructive contributions, hopefully it will be the perfect bike for you!
In other words, increase (hopefully) the profitability of your company based on the uncompensated contributions of others

Even stores offer customers who respond to their receipt surveys a chance to win money, etc (and I am more inclined to offer free feedback to already established brands and stores in hopes of making them better).

Anyhow, based on your initial post alone I would be quite weary of your brand and bikes, as the description and questions seem out of tune with the road bike community and comes across more concerned with profit and trendiness than performance and quality.
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Old 08-05-14, 09:01 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by labatt View Post

  1. What do you wish came with your bike when you bought it? (not components, but accessories)
  2. What little things are on your bike now that you find convenient?
  3. What little things are missing from your bike that you wish it had?
  4. Are there any aspects of bike design that truly inspire you? Shape (what kind of shape?), paint, logos, etc.?
  5. Would you have any constructive suggestions for a new company that could create a fanatical following?
1. I don't want a bike that comes with what may be unwanted accessories. I'd rather decide what I want and get it on my own..
2. I don't have an opinion on this, sorry.
3. I do not like bikes that are loaded to the hilt with logos, This includes frame, wheels and accessories.
4. Fair pricing, components that match the pricing, customer service, a decent warranty.
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Old 08-05-14, 09:05 PM   #16
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No proprietary bits. Eyelets for fenders and racks. Generator hub and lights. Full coverage fenders. Rear rack with tabs for pannier hooks. Braze on for 3 bottles. Clearance for tires up to 38mm. 700 wheels. Pro fit with every bike. Strong wheels.

Design for fenders & rack so they look integrated.

My wife says if you want to sell to women, have women choose color options.
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Old 08-05-14, 09:11 PM   #17
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In other words, increase (hopefully) the profitability of your company based on the uncompensated contributions of others

Even stores offer customers who respond to their receipt surveys a chance to win money, etc (and I am more inclined to offer free feedback to already established brands and stores in hopes of making them better).

Anyhow, based on your initial post alone I would be quite weary of your brand and bikes, as the description and questions seem out of tune with the road bike community and comes across more concerned with profit and trendiness than performance and quality.
I apologize if I offended you in some way. Of course quality is number one, but so is providing simple conveniences and thoughtful additions that make life easier. We're not looking for technological advances or trendiness. As a matter of fact, our initial designs are clean and VERY classic. But - we are interested in sweating the details... and going to groups for input is always better than just assuming you know what everyone wants. That would be egotistical of us. We'd love to pay people for their help, but we're self-funded out of our own pockets, self-capitalized and running grassroots on building a bike for the people by the people. Sincerely. Honestly. I can also tell you this - we're tired of bikes being built and sold that are gorgeous but useless, ride poorly and cost a huge amount. Our mantra is function before form, and value based. Affordable, high quality, thoughtfully built and delivered bikes. I mentioned we want a fanatical fanbase. You don't build that by caring about profit and trendiness first.
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Old 08-05-14, 09:25 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by labatt View Post
Hi All -

Hopefully this is OK to post here. If not, please move or delete!

I'm working with a team that is launching a new road bike (not tri bikes, but entry road, exercise road and racing/competition road) company. There are many reasons why this group will succeed, but - unfortunately - I can't really provide details at this point. It will be big news once they go public though!

At this point, I'm working to do some research on aspects of the bike itself. At some point later, I might come back to ask additional questions about customer service, the buying process, etc.

We've always been intrigued by Apple. It's very apparent that they look at HOW there products are used - not just what the product does. Little things like the way the cord wraps onto the AC adapter of the Macbook, or the way the brightness of the Apple logo on the cover of the Macbook changes based upon the brightness of the screen. The packaging they deliver their products in, and many other aspects of their products, are designed to inspire, build confidence and trust, and create fanatical fans.

We're looking to do the same thing with this brand. We have numerous ideas, but we'd love to hear some of yours. If you could answer/discuss a few of these questions we'd really appreciate it!
  1. What do you wish came with your bike when you bought it? (not components, but accessories)
  2. What little things are on your bike now that you find convenient?
  3. What little things are missing from your bike that you wish it had?
  4. Are there any aspects of bike design that truly inspire you? Shape (what kind of shape?), paint, logos, etc.?
  5. Would you have any constructive suggestions for a new company that could create a fanatical following?

Thanks for your input!!
You know who has fanatical fans in cycling? Campagnolo. That might be a might be a better model than Apple.

Are you looking to make modern carbon racing bikes or servicing the retro-grouch crowd? You might have better luck with your vision if you go after the latter market.
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Old 08-05-14, 09:32 PM   #19
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Answering your questions depends on what type of bicycle you are thinking of. My main ride is a Stradalli RP-14 Carbon road bike. This is the best bike I have ever owned and I have had a bunch in over 35 years of biking. With that in mind my thoughts:
1) A high pressure frame pump, bottle cages, seat bag that can hold a tube, patch kit, tire irons with a shoe lace pouch for key and money. A chain with a master link so I can remove the chain to clean and lube easily. My favorite frame pump is a Lyzene. ANT-10 sensors already installed.
2) The bar fly that holds my Garmin Edge 510.
3) A younger body to power it.
4) The graphics on the Stradalli gets comments about every time I stop at stores, even people in cars have said something. This is the major reason I picked this bike. This is the first bike I bought that the saddle that came with it was good enough to keep on it (Prologo Scratch Pro). I used to ride on a Koobi saddle. A fanatical following will come when a company delivers what they promise, answer their phone/emails and solve problems equitably. You mention Apple. How do they treat you in one of their stores?
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Old 08-05-14, 09:55 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by labatt View Post
I apologize if I offended you in some way. Of course quality is number one, but so is providing simple conveniences and thoughtful additions that make life easier. We're not looking for technological advances or trendiness. As a matter of fact, our initial designs are clean and VERY classic. But - we are interested in sweating the details... and going to groups for input is always better than just assuming you know what everyone wants. That would be egotistical of us. We'd love to pay people for their help, but we're self-funded out of our own pockets, self-capitalized and running grassroots on building a bike for the people by the people. Sincerely. Honestly. I can also tell you this - we're tired of bikes being built and sold that are gorgeous but useless, ride poorly and cost a huge amount. Our mantra is function before form, and value based. Affordable, high quality, thoughtfully built and delivered bikes. I mentioned we want a fanatical fanbase. You don't build that by caring about profit and trendiness first.
Instead of trying to recreate Specialized right out of the box (they were in accessories/small parts before slapping their logos on Giant/Merida frames), you should design your frame to readily accept a wide variety of accessories. You could always contract with other established companies to slap your logo on a given widget- Wald gets their logo'd bags from Inertia Designs, for example and I think Relevate makes bags for Salsa.

Otherwise, if you're trying to develop the "perfectly equipped bike" for the masses... you're doomed. What I want in a recreational bike is not what I use for commuting. And like another said, I really don't want to have to pay a premium for your accessories that are included with the bike and then turn around and strip them because they have little use for my tastes/needs.

If you're thinking about integrated lighting, forget it- nobody can agree on a standard of how much light or flash pattern is best.
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Old 08-05-14, 11:24 PM   #21
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we're tired of bikes being built and sold that are gorgeous but useless, ride poorly and cost a huge amount. .
Basically create a bike that is gorgeous and yet useful, something that rides great and cost very little! Really who would not like that??? Is this research some sort of social experiment?
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Old 08-05-14, 11:57 PM   #22
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LOL... no, no social experiment per se... You named exactly what we're trying to build - a bike with gorgeous lines (not necessarily complex logos and/or paint) that rides great and people feel is a lot of value for the money spent. Just to clarify though - these are not commuter bikes or touring bikes. These are performance bikes at three different levels - entry, exercise/training, and semi-pro/pro/racing.

The point of this thread was mostly to see if there are little touches that we can incorporate to make people's lives nicer. For example, say someone thought a chain hanger would be great, or some easy and special way to do maintenance without putting it on a stand, or a clip on storage box.. whatever... I am just looking to see if anyone has some ideas for little things that could help their lives a little when they are on or off the bike. With regards to accessories with the bike.. personally, when I bought my first bike, it would have been nice if it came with a basic set of tools for on the road and off the road maintenance. By the time I got my Kestrel, I had everything.. but when I was a newbie it would have been nice to get tools, along with instructions on how to use them. I would have considered it a thoughtful touch. But that's just me.

Questions 4 and 5 (style and is thee anything else) are kind of secondary to what I'm looking for. I just figured I'd ask.

And I want a younger body and stronger legs myself.. so that's already on the list! However, I'm pretty sure they would be illegal to ship with the bike.

Last edited by labatt; 08-06-14 at 12:00 AM.
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Old 08-06-14, 12:16 AM   #23
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Actually, integrated lights would be a great idea. Amount of light and pattern can be chosen with replaceable led system, and choice of lenses. Oh...I forgot these will be road bikes...nvm...roadies will rather be killed riding fast, than be safe, but slowed down by an extra weight of led or batteries ��
Anyway, you will need to think outside the box to be visible, and to be an interesting choice between all well known brands out there.
Good luck with your new company!
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Old 08-06-14, 04:33 AM   #24
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How about a transferable warranty. How about no fights about warranty coverage either.

Anytime I hear somebody planning a new company with a new awesome product that's going to appeal to tons of people I think of that simpson's episode where Homer's long lost brother let him design a new car.
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Old 08-06-14, 04:50 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by labatt View Post
Hi All -

Hopefully this is OK to post here. If not, please move or delete!

I'm working with a team that is launching a new road bike (not tri bikes, but entry road, exercise road and racing/competition road) company. There are many reasons why this group will succeed, but - unfortunately - I can't really provide details at this point. It will be big news once they go public though!

At this point, I'm working to do some research on aspects of the bike itself. At some point later, I might come back to ask additional questions about customer service, the buying process, etc.

We've always been intrigued by Apple. It's very apparent that they look at HOW there products are used - not just what the product does. Little things like the way the cord wraps onto the AC adapter of the Macbook, or the way the brightness of the Apple logo on the cover of the Macbook changes based upon the brightness of the screen. The packaging they deliver their products in, and many other aspects of their products, are designed to inspire, build confidence and trust, and create fanatical fans.
Personally I think things like the brightness of the Apple logo are little more than gimmicks. Pretty, but nothing to do with functionality at all.

Quote:
We're looking to do the same thing with this brand. We have numerous ideas, but we'd love to hear some of yours. If you could answer/discuss a few of these questions we'd really appreciate it!
  1. What do you wish came with your bike when you bought it? (not components, but accessories)
  2. What little things are on your bike now that you find convenient?
  3. What little things are missing from your bike that you wish it had?
  4. Are there any aspects of bike design that truly inspire you? Shape (what kind of shape?), paint, logos, etc.?
  5. Would you have any constructive suggestions for a new company that could create a fanatical following?

Thanks for your input!!
It seems odd to me that buying a new bike means also buying things like bottle cages. If you're talking entry level bikes the chances are the buyer will want at least one bottle cage and maybe two. If you're talking higher end bikes where the buyer may already have bottle cages you're talking a high enough price point that there's probably enough margin to include a couple. At the very top end there's probably enough margin to include carbon cages that match the bike.

An optional pack containing a saddlebag, spare tube, patch kit, pump, multitool etc would be handy. It would let the new rider just buy one item rather than having to figure out what they might need. If the pack were matched to the bike they wouldn't need to figure out just what they needed in terms of pump heads, tubes and the like.

I'd really like to see a bike that had bosses for caliper, canti and disc brakes. Probably not useful in high end racing gear because of weight/drag but for an average rider it seems handy to be able to move from one to another without needing a new fork or frame adjustments.

Shape is functional, it's hard to see doing much with that without changing the fundamental design of the bike. I wouldn't want a funky shape if it adversely affected the ride. Paint - personally I find white and silver bikes often look unfinished. I'd rather have a bike without too many logos - my mountain bike and my now dead cross bike are both Specialized and even though it's a well known name I'd really rather not have SPECIALIZED emblazoned so boldly across everything. Just like anyone sees an ad showing someone with white cables to their earbuds and thinks iPod, maybe you could come up with some custom colour schemes that would make everyone think of your company.

A fanatical following takes time, and if the product is crap it's not going to happen.
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