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Shimano is the Microsoft of the bicycle industry

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Shimano is the Microsoft of the bicycle industry

Old 09-09-11, 11:40 AM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by Puget Pounder View Post
MicroShift = Open Office
I'd say SunRace = OpenOffice. They make those Shimano freewheel knockoffs, they make them well, and they sell them cheap (if not free).

Who might SRAM be in this software analogy? And what about the old French brands: Simplex, Huret? Perhaps DOS? Basic and utilitarian, but too clunky for the average user and hopelessly obsolete?
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Old 09-09-11, 11:49 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by balindamood View Post
You obviously are not well schooled on Shimano's history.

That said, they have made very goog things for a very long time, and are responsible for bringing to market a number of things whice we all take for granted: indexed shifting, brifters, and free-hubs amoungst others (although others may have done similar things, Shimano they made them work). They have had some stinkers (AX to a certain degree, Positron, the air-system), but most companies bringing new things to market are going to have this (Apple is bucking that trend recently, but have not always been perfect)

I love all of the old Campy and French bits on my bicycles, but I run Shimano, and occasionally Suntour, on the bikes I race/commute on. It is kinda like old motorcycles. Everyone wants a Harley in the garage, but those who ride them every day, without fixing them every day, usually get a Honda, etc.

Oh, and SRAM=Linix
Ok, but how does all this make Shimano anti-competitive?
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Old 09-09-11, 11:50 AM
  #28  
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Originally Posted by southpawboston View Post
i'd say sunrace = openoffice. They make those shimano freewheel knockoffs, they make them well, and they sell them cheap (if not free).

Who might sram be in this software analogy? and what about the old french brands: Simplex, huret? perhaps dos? Basic and utilitarian, but too clunky for the average user and hopelessly obsolete?
CP/M...one of my favorite OSes from days of yore.
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Old 09-09-11, 12:05 PM
  #29  
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SunRace and Falcon are like MSI and Asus: They're good quality, cheap, and found everywhere, but their names are completely unknown and people question them because they're from Taiwan.
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Old 09-09-11, 12:22 PM
  #30  
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Hey! You guys forgot Simplex!!
Simplex = ACAD13??.....

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Old 09-09-11, 12:34 PM
  #31  
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
Shimano is the Microsoft of the bicycle industry. I know this because Tom told me, and on the Internet no less! This got me thinking....

Suntour was the WordPerfect.

SunRace is the Corel.

Campy is just too campy for me.

Comment?
Campy is Apple in this case...the stuff that's a little more money on the front end, but you get more out of it and it works better.

Have you actually used modern Campy?
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Old 09-09-11, 12:42 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
Have you actually used modern Campy?
No, it's off-topic, you know! I post here because I like Sturmey Archer stuff, mostly.

Well, that's not quite true. My wife's Bianchi Eros (which I maintain) has Veloce/Mirage. I realize it's over ten years old, so maybe it's not modern any more, and a lot of people sneer at that gruppo anyway, but my wife absolutely loves it and it has given me no trouble. Higher end modern Campy stuff, I have absolutely no experience with it at all. But seriously, let's not take this thread too seriously, I suspect it's just a troll to begin with.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:06 PM
  #33  
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Brooks is a swingline stapler...there are newer things out there, but the swingline is still the best tool for the job, and feels so comfortable in the hand.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:07 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
Campy is Apple in this case...the stuff that's a little more money on the front end, but you get more out of it and it works better.
When I was actively building up bikes with 10 speed Campagnolo, it was cheaper than comparable Shimano. I don't think Apple and Campagnolo are really comparable in that regard.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:11 PM
  #35  
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SRAM = Apple/Mac without a doubt.... theyve always hung around in the background doing good things, but recently have made major moves to take over huge chunks of business from the monopoly of Shimanosoft.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:19 PM
  #36  
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Originally Posted by khatfull View Post
Ok, but how does all this make Shimano anti-competitive?
I think Shimano's most anti-competitive practice was how they priced their components to OEM bike manufacturers. Shimano bought up small manufacturing shops that made things like cranks and headsets and seatposts until they could produce the "full group". This was not to have the same cachet as the Campy "full gruppo" but instead as a way to present a severely low low price to a bike manufacturer for the full group, take it or leave it. If a bike company wanted to use a different component, like a shifter, the price was the same. Nearly all bike manufacturers said 'what the heck, I have to pay for it anyway, I'll use it."

Grip Shift sued on the grounds of anti-competitiveness and won.

Shimano made Shifter-Derailleur-Cassette/Freewheel compatibility paramount with indexed shifting. If all the other manufacturers of shifters, freewheels, and rear derailleurs had quickly adopted Shimano's uniform cog spacing and early shifting derailleurs (keeping in mind the early-shifting slant parallelogram derailleur was Suntour's patent) they still would have been screwed because as soon as the six speed with greater OLD was introduced Shimano was hard at work developing narrower cog spacing for seven speed clusters. The race to the Spinal Tap 11-cog rear cluster had begun.

It can be argued that Shimano had to go for the "all one brand" approach in order for their innovations to work and they were under no obligation to make their stuff work with other manufacturers products. Even so, it seemed like Shimano was hell-bent on making their stuff not even compatible with their own stuff from last year. And to top it off there were no repair parts provided to bike shops. If it broke, replace the whole thing. If what broke was a several years old, buy a whole new system. I still see some of that from them.

Of course, we C&Vers know how to beat the Man. FRICTION SHIFTING! SQUARE TAPERS!
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Old 09-09-11, 01:26 PM
  #37  
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Originally Posted by KonAaron Snake View Post
Brooks is a swingline stapler...there are newer things out there, but the swingline is still the best tool for the job, and feels so comfortable in the hand.
You might be talking about the old, all metal Swinglines. Half the new {mostly plastic) Swinglines in the past few offices I worked out quit working properly (the stapler legs bend up the wrong way on one side) after a couple of full stapler loads. Yup, they don't make them like they used to!
Maybe Brooks are more like Anvils....heavy as heck........but works like always!

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Old 09-09-11, 01:32 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by Beach Comber View Post
I'm not so sure. I have yet to see my bike pop up the message "The Rider Wants to Shift to 10th Gear. OK, Cancel, or Abort".
"You just shifted gears. Please come to a complete stop, then restart for this change to take effect."
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Old 09-09-11, 01:33 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by Chombi View Post
You might be talking about the old, all metal Swinglines. Half the new {mostly plastic) Swinglines in the past few offices I worked out quit working properly (the stapler legs bend up the wrong way on one side) after a couple of full stapler loads. Yup, they don't make them like they used to!
Maybe Brooks are more like Anvils....heavy as heck........but works like always!

Chombi
Did things change in the past few years? I could still order a steel Swingline as of five years ago. In fact I still use the one I ordered five years ago...adnd it works as well now as the day I bought it.

Reliable and traditional...like Brooks.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:34 PM
  #40  
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Shimano:
They're all over the place.
It is never backwards-compatible (aftermarket companies follow their lead).
On occasion, one of their products will develop a long-term fault that just can't be corrected, no matter how hard you try.
They have way too many versions of similar products.
Serviceability is often limited.
You tolerate its existence.

Microsoft:
They're all over the place.
It is never backwards-compatible (aftermarket companies follow their lead).
On occasion, one of their products will develop a long-term fault that just can't be corrected, no matter how hard you try.
They have way too many versions of similar products.
Serviceability is often limited.
You tolerate its existence.

Campagnolo doesn't have a matching software company, though you might be able to relate them to Cooler Master or Antec.

-Kurt
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Old 09-09-11, 01:44 PM
  #41  
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Ok, but how does all this make Shimano anti-competitive?
In addition to MKahrl points out, in the very early 70's all of the Japanese component manufacturers got together and reportably decided as a group that they were not going to do what Campagnolo had done to squeaze out the smaller manufacturers by making "groups". The first thing Shimano did afterwards in introduce the Dura Ace group, and it was all downhill from there.

You could argue that this is not an anti-competative practice, but simply a marketing strategy. Suntour, Simplex, and others faught it to the end, and died trying (although they also could not keep up with Shimano's technological development side). Regardless, the effect is clear. We have Campy and Shimano. Their respective hubris has allowed SRAM to enter the market and compete (and has become a major player in the OEM market despite starting to get strung out on the capital side). Even so, SRAM has left the branding of a number of components alone (Avid, Rockshox, etc) while only pushing the group on new lines of products like the road group. I am curious to see how this continues and am glad there is a third option, although I am not excited about some of their offerings. I am really curious to see how Microshift develops. Tiawan has been a bike component powerhouse since the 80's, and I am a bit surpised it has taken this long for a Tiawanese company to start putting together its own set of components. I have not seen or tried any, so I could not comment as to their relative performance or quality relative to the others.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:49 PM
  #42  
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I'm still trying to figure out where to actually start measuring with this ruler. I should be laying in my back with my legs in the air right?
Anyway, I've got campy 10sp on a few bikes and I really dig it.
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Old 09-09-11, 01:51 PM
  #43  
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Huret = Wang
Simplex = MultiMate

Both okay in their time, both deader'n a doornail now, neither missed by very many.

Campy was dangerously close to being WordStar - groundbreaking, the very best for a while, and utterly incapable of adjusting to changing times and technology. Unlike WordStar, Campy survived, but it was a near-run thing. I don't have enough Mac experience to know if it is a good analogy for Campy now.

I can't equate Shimano with MicroSoft. One, Shimano has actually innovated stuff, whereas MicroSoft hasn't innovated a damn thing. (Gates and Allen didn't even make DOS - they bought it.) Two, Shimano does not sell beta versions as a finished product (can you say "Vista"?). Three, there is no documented case of identity theft where the info was gleaned from a hacked Shimano part. Four, Shimano seems to care a little bit about customer service.
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Old 09-09-11, 02:08 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by khatfull View Post
I don't see Shimano doing anything anti-competitive. They just embraced and perfected indexing at exactly the right time and left Suntour and Campy in the dust just long enough to become the defacto standard, as is Microsoft.

To lump SunTour in with WordPerfect....awww man, that's mean.

I have heard of Shimano refusing to supply components for bikes unless the bike was all-Shimano. The makers were not allowed to mix a Shimano this and Suntour that. This is monopolistic behavior. It also angered many of their potential customers. <-- I am not involved in the biking industry, so I could be wrong.
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Old 09-09-11, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by balindamood View Post
You could argue that this is not an anti-competative practice, but simply a marketing strategy.
The same argument could be made about Microsoft.
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Old 09-09-11, 02:14 PM
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Didn't SRAM sue (or threaten to sue) Shimano some years ago for illegal monopolistic activity?
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Old 09-09-11, 02:29 PM
  #47  
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so who's google in this mix?
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Old 09-09-11, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by himespau View Post
so who's google in this mix?
Hmmmmm...

Trek.

I'm pondering who Sturmey Archer is...

I'd say Atari 2600...an anachronism with no real function or purpose but which people like for nostalgia and cool factor. This would make Rudi like one of the dudes in the movie King of Kong

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Old 09-09-11, 02:44 PM
  #49  
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Mac and Campy are analog in the sense that they both awaken the deepest urges of consumption in me due to the quality, the mystique of the brand and the excitement of the product. Hence, I'm typing this on a way to big iMac standing next to two all campy road bikes that are way above my riding means.

Shimano is like windows in the same way Steven Fry described windows: you turn op to work in a bland office where nothing excites or encourages productivity. It works, but it's just too boring.
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Old 09-09-11, 02:45 PM
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Didn't SRAM sue (or threaten to sue) Shimano some years ago for illegal monopolistic activity?
They did, and they won back in the early-mid 90's (technically they may have "settled out of court", but in essence, they "won").
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