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Rivendell needs help.

Old 02-27-18, 09:18 AM
  #176  
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How is RBW licensing the name Rivendell? I have not seen any evidence of this.

If anything I see the opposite. Products that RBW codesigns with manufacturers are sold under one name by RBW and another name by the manufacturer such as the RBW Gripking vs MKS Lambda or its given a more neutral name like Silver Shifters.
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Old 02-27-18, 09:20 AM
  #177  
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Originally Posted by MKahrl View Post
How is RBW licensing the name Rivendell? I have not seen any evidence of this.

If anything I see the opposite. Products that RBW codesigns with manufacturers are sold under one name by RBW and another name by the manufacturer such as the RBW Gripking vs MKS Lambda or its given a more neutral name like Silver Shifters.
Well, when you click the "about us" link on the page, you end up at a page that states this:
Rivendell and The Lord of the Rings and the names of the characters, items and places therein are trademarks or registered trademarks of The Saul Zaentz Company d/b/a Middle-earth Enterprises and are used under license by Rivendell Bicycle Works. All other trademarks and trade names used here belong to Rivendell Bicycle Works.

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Old 02-27-18, 10:10 AM
  #178  
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I misunderstood your post and I should not have. You were quite clear and understandable.

We don't really know what it costs for RBW to license the name but it might be reasonable for a company unrelated to the books or movies. Presumably Rivendell Mountain Works did the same during the first upsurge in Tolkien interest in the early seventies. RBW preceded the LOTR movies by seven years.
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Old 02-27-18, 10:36 AM
  #179  
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Originally Posted by MKahrl View Post
I misunderstood your post and I should not have. You were quite clear and understandable.
TY
RBW preceded the LOTR movies by seven years.
I'm in my middle 50's, and I read Tolkien back in the middle 70's. The Hobbit and LOR were huge. Maybe it was a college thing and my older siblings were in college
I would bet Grant read Niven's Ringworld as well.
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Old 02-27-18, 10:47 AM
  #180  
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Originally Posted by MKahrl View Post
I misunderstood your post and I should not have. You were quite clear and understandable.

We don't really know what it costs for RBW to license the name but it might be reasonable for a company unrelated to the books or movies. Presumably Rivendell Mountain Works did the same during the first upsurge in Tolkien interest in the early seventies. RBW preceded the LOTR movies by seven years.
There were some earlier LOTR movies.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lo...ngs_(1978_film)
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Old 02-27-18, 11:24 AM
  #181  
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I hope he keeps it going as I'm always in support of a business that's created something special.

To me as a potential customer, his success has possibly been his undoing. He's succeeded at selling the idea of practical bikes for everyday riding in an industry that WAS hammering on the line that good bike stuff = race bike stuff. I bought that idea, and look closely at the riding I do before choosing a bike. Much of my riding is "high performance" so I buy race type stuff for that. The low performance stuff, well, with a little skill, can be achieved for very little money. Riv bikes cost A LOT of money. So I don't buy Riv bikes. Many of Riv's parts are either very similar to old durable stuff, so I buy that, or available elsewhere for less, or at a LBS for the same price and with the benefits of my LBS so I buy there. That's my little slice of the market.

As for the rest of the market, it's pretty clear that the "practical bikes" message got across. The market is awash with bikes with clearance for fenders and big tires, mounting points for racks and comfortable geometry. And disc brakes. In whatever material you want. And "classic" looks if you want them. All for less money. And when you're being practical, how much sense does it make to buy an expensive "artisanal" bike that's made in Asia over a cheaper one that's also made overseas? The result is that the market for Riv bikes ends up being pretty darn small, possibly smaller than when he started out, as the cheaper "Riv-like" bikes likely cannibalize a piece of the original Riv-bike market that existed before the "industry" caught up.

Velo-Orange, Compass, Linus, Raleigh etc. have figured out how to thrive making pretty, classic, and practical bikes and parts. I hope Riv can too but this is the flip side of the ruthless way capitalism improves the breed. Personally I won't be buying a gift card as I don't need anything right now that they have. I hope that they figure out how to get along without relying on the charitable nature of their established fan base, as that's rarely a sustainable business model.
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Old 02-27-18, 02:03 PM
  #182  
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Originally Posted by MKahrl View Post
Presumably Rivendell Mountain Works did the same during the first upsurge in Tolkien interest in the early seventies.
Grant decided on Rivendell as an homage to Rivendell Mountain Works.
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Old 02-27-18, 02:07 PM
  #183  
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Originally Posted by tashi View Post
I hope he keeps it going as I'm always in support of a business that's created something special.

To me as a potential customer, his success has possibly been his undoing. He's succeeded at selling the idea of practical bikes for everyday riding in an industry that WAS hammering on the line that good bike stuff = race bike stuff. I bought that idea, and look closely at the riding I do before choosing a bike. Much of my riding is "high performance" so I buy race type stuff for that. The low performance stuff, well, with a little skill, can be achieved for very little money. Riv bikes cost A LOT of money. So I don't buy Riv bikes. Many of Riv's parts are either very similar to old durable stuff, so I buy that, or available elsewhere for less, or at a LBS for the same price and with the benefits of my LBS so I buy there. That's my little slice of the market.

As for the rest of the market, it's pretty clear that the "practical bikes" message got across. The market is awash with bikes with clearance for fenders and big tires, mounting points for racks and comfortable geometry. And disc brakes. In whatever material you want. And "classic" looks if you want them. All for less money. And when you're being practical, how much sense does it make to buy an expensive "artisanal" bike that's made in Asia over a cheaper one that's also made overseas? The result is that the market for Riv bikes ends up being pretty darn small, possibly smaller than when he started out, as the cheaper "Riv-like" bikes likely cannibalize a piece of the original Riv-bike market that existed before the "industry" caught up.

Velo-Orange, Compass, Linus, Raleigh etc. have figured out how to thrive making pretty, classic, and practical bikes and parts. I hope Riv can too but this is the flip side of the ruthless way capitalism improves the breed. Personally I won't be buying a gift card as I don't need anything right now that they have. I hope that they figure out how to get along without relying on the charitable nature of their established fan base, as that's rarely a sustainable business model.
Rivendell pretty much created the market for these companies to succeed. For example, they used to be the #1 importer of Brooks saddles when they were viewed as dinosaurs of another era. Now it's hard to find an LBS in Portland that doesn't stock them. All of those Surly LHT's that seem to be everywhere can trace their heritage through Rivendell's prism to the past. The rebirth of framebuilding using lugs is another example of their influence.

Monetizing the brand has always been a tough row to hoe for Grant.
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Old 02-27-18, 02:10 PM
  #184  
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Originally Posted by tyrion View Post
There were some earlier LOTR movies.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Lo...ngs_(1978_film)
As I recall, there was a pitiful animated film "The Hobbit" back in the mid seventies.
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Old 02-27-18, 02:44 PM
  #185  
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Originally Posted by tashi View Post
And when you're being practical, how much sense does it make to buy an expensive "artisanal" bike that's made in Asia over a cheaper one that's also made overseas? The result is that the market for Riv bikes ends up being pretty darn small,
I was surprised to read that many of the Rivendell branded products are made overseas.

I have to wonder if not branding USA hurts his boutique business.

This may also affect his "cash flow" if he has to order 1000 bags or 1000 frames at a time.
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Old 02-27-18, 02:51 PM
  #186  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I was surprised to read that many of the Rivendell branded products are made overseas.

I have to wonder if not branding USA hurts his boutique business.

This may also affect his "cash flow" if he has to order 1000 bags or 1000 frames at a time.
Go through the "Blugs" and "Blahgs" at rivbike.com to get a feel for their business model. It ain't nowhere near 1k bags or frames or most anything.
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Old 02-27-18, 03:10 PM
  #187  
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Originally Posted by gugie View Post
Go through the "Blugs" and "Blahgs" at rivbike.com to get a feel for their business model. It ain't nowhere near 1k bags or frames or most anything.
I'm not seeing notes on volume.

But if they have 10 bike models, 4 sizes, and 2 colors, that comes out to about 80 different frames.

Say they buy 2 of each at $500 each, that comes up to $80,000.

It is easy to get big bills.
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Old 02-27-18, 03:21 PM
  #188  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I have to wonder if not branding USA hurts his boutique business.
Most of the boutique component brands do most of their manufacturing overseas. Nearly all vulcanized small-brand tires are made by Panaracer. Nitto is popular for things like handlebars and stems. One of the hurdles to manufacturing stuff in the US is that we no longer have many nice tight clusters of forges and machine shops and whatnot; Taiwan is far more attractive in that regard.
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Old 02-27-18, 03:29 PM
  #189  
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Originally Posted by CliffordK View Post
I'm not seeing notes on volume.

But if they have 10 bike models, 4 sizes, and 2 colors, that comes out to about 80 different frames.

Say they buy 2 of each at $500 each, that comes up to $80,000.

It is easy to get big bills.
In reality, they bring in a model, maybe reorder, and that's it. It makes each model "special". If you look at their inventory of older models, there's always a few that didn't sell. Low volume production frames are difficult to deal with, the standard deviation on a normal distribution of frame sizes is quite high, and there's a good chance you'll have some frames left over that will have to go into the sales bin.

But your point is well taken, and is the main reason Rivendell has cash flow issues. This isn't my opinion, it's what I've heard Grant say.
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Old 02-27-18, 04:52 PM
  #190  
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Rivendell helped keep the lugged steel and leather flame alive during the dark days. I figure I owe him a debt and I'm happy to help. Now that the niche they preserved is popular (sort off) I can imagine their position in it is getting squeezed. They have a good brand and goodwill, so hopefully they can adapt.
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Old 02-27-18, 06:21 PM
  #191  
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A snip from an email from Rivendell: "Thanks to you and not anything we did, in less than a week we went from me sure we’d be gone in four months — a fear I didn’t spread to the crew here— to solid money footing and optimism. Because of what you did, we can pay bills, buy inventory, pay credit card debts, pay decent chunks toward bikes already ordered and too late to take back, and pay off most of our line of credit. You must be wondering how much we took in. Businesses don’t customarily talk about specifics like that, but what you’ve done for us isn’t customary, either, and why should you, of all life on earth, have to be curious? t’s still trickling in, and we appreciate it all, but since last Th afternoon we’ve deposited a little more than $215,000."

"From now on we’ll order and stock more conservatively, so we’re bound to sell out faster and might be out of stock when you finally want it. We’ll be better at the business, but we won’t change what’s working already, and I promise won’t get more mellow about bicycles or gear. We’re not joining the World Team.

It’s true that you saved Rivendell Bicycle Works and secured a future for the kinds of gear we cause to be, but it’s also an understatement. That’s just stuff. What you saved were jobs for the best people I know. You’re keeping us together, and we thank you for that and will never, ever ask again. — G"
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Old 02-27-18, 06:26 PM
  #192  
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Originally Posted by n0+4c|u3 View Post
Anyone know how I go about transferring this gift certificate to someone else?
I guess it helps when you check your emails...
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Old 02-27-18, 06:30 PM
  #193  
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Originally Posted by 02Giant View Post
A snip from an email from Rivendell: "Thanks to you and not anything we did, in less than a week we went from me sure we’d be gone in four months — a fear I didn’t spread to the crew here— to solid money footing and optimism. Because of what you did, we can pay bills, buy inventory, pay credit card debts, pay decent chunks toward bikes already ordered and too late to take back, and pay off most of our line of credit. You must be wondering how much we took in. Businesses don’t customarily talk about specifics like that, but what you’ve done for us isn’t customary, either, and why should you, of all life on earth, have to be curious? t’s still trickling in, and we appreciate it all, but since last Th afternoon we’ve deposited a little more than $215,000."

"From now on we’ll order and stock more conservatively, so we’re bound to sell out faster and might be out of stock when you finally want it. We’ll be better at the business, but we won’t change what’s working already, and I promise won’t get more mellow about bicycles or gear. We’re not joining the World Team.

It’s true that you saved Rivendell Bicycle Works and secured a future for the kinds of gear we cause to be, but it’s also an understatement. That’s just stuff. What you saved were jobs for the best people I know. You’re keeping us together, and we thank you for that and will never, ever ask again. — G"

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Old 02-27-18, 06:38 PM
  #194  
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Originally Posted by 02Giant View Post
A snip from an email from Rivendell:
That's good news, glad to be a part of saving something worthwhile.
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Old 02-27-18, 06:42 PM
  #195  
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I got the email, too.

A good example of why doing your little bit to save a company like Rivendell is a little bit more than just grudgingly offering up a no-interest loan to some slacker who's on the way to bankruptcy anyway.

The Rivraffle pot is up to $90, now. Feel free to chip in anytime up 'til 9am Pacific Time, Thursday 15 March, then I'll cut it off for the drawing.
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Old 02-27-18, 07:00 PM
  #196  
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Yikes, I didn't know they were so close to something awful. I would worry about them being able to right the ship without some outside advice and serious changes. I don't regret for a moment pitching into this effort, but I hope they can pull it together.
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Old 02-27-18, 07:20 PM
  #197  
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Originally Posted by Lascauxcaveman View Post
I got the email, too.

A good example of why doing your little bit to save a company like Rivendell is a little bit more than just grudgingly offering up a no-interest loan to some slacker who's on the way to bankruptcy anyway.

The Rivraffle pot is up to $90, now. Feel free to chip in anytime up 'til 9am Pacific Time, Thursday 15 March, then I'll cut it off for the drawing.
Put me down for a coupla HM's.
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Old 02-27-18, 07:21 PM
  #198  
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Old 02-27-18, 07:38 PM
  #199  
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Dropped by at opening last Sat. Bought several items I've been wanting (but not "needing").

Place was PACKED with new boxed frames. Will said a bunch had been delayed, a bunch had arrived on time, and even MORE were arriving soon but really early. If they'd arrived on time the costs would have been spread out. However it's all got to be paid NOW.

So I dropped around $85 cash to avoid the credit card mordida to help out a bit. They're all great people and Grant has been very influential in the industry. I'm happy to help out.
Cheers!
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Old 02-27-18, 08:32 PM
  #200  
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FYI, e-mail from Rivendell:

Learn • Shop • Blog • Support • Call: (800) 345-3918

Rivendell Bicycle Works
2040 North Main St. #19 • Walnut Creek, CA 94596
Febuary 27th 2018

Thanks to you and not anything we did, in less than a week we went from me sure we’d be gone in four months — a fear I didn’t spread to the crew here— to solid money footing and optimism. Because of what you did, we can pay bills, buy inventory, pay credit card debts, pay decent chunks toward bikes already ordered and too late to take back, and pay off most of our line of credit. You must be wondering how much we took in. Businesses don’t customarily talk about specifics like that, but what you’ve done for us isn’t customary, either, and why should you, of all life on earth, have to be curious? t’s still trickling in, and we appreciate it all, but since last Th afternoon we’ve deposited a little more than $215,000.

I wondered whether or not to say the number, the only hesitation being that it might make some of you feel as though your $10 contribution for the gift certificate was a drop in the ocean. No! This had to be a massive collective effort. It would not have worked any other way, and there’s no ranking of contributions. Well...almost. BT bought a ten for the cause. That’s the one that meant the most to me, personally. Thanks, Brian. Holy cow.

Thanks to the rest of you, too—individuals and forums and websites and instagrammers and all those social media things that I don’t technically understand but I know work and made such a big difference here. If I name one I should name them all, but if I try I’ll forget one and feel horrible, so--argh-- thanks. BIG difference.

No simple thanks conveys what any of us are feeling, which is so much deeper and more complicated than that. What we’re feeling is huge relief, elation, and disbelief, and pressured, in a good way, to be worthy of it.

We have a restart traction, and we’re not going to blow it and waste your help.

From now on we’ll order and stock more conservatively, so we’re bound to sell out faster and might be out of stock when you finally want it. We’ll be better at the business, but we won’t change what’s working already, and I promise won’t get more mellow about bicycles or gear. We’re not joining the World Team.

It’s true that you saved Rivendell Bicycle Works and secured a future for the kinds of gear we cause to be, but it’s also an understatement. That’s just stuff. What you saved were jobs for the best people I know. You’re keeping us together, and we thank you for that and will never, ever ask again. — G
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