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Does technology affect bike price?

Old 06-24-12, 01:27 PM
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windhchaser
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Does technology affect bike price?

For instance will bikes made by carbon fiber ever come down in price?
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Old 06-24-12, 01:32 PM
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Define "come down in price". If you mean lower prices than they are now, sure (depending on quality). If you mean full carbon Magnas or Nexts at Wally World for $250, then I'd wager a 'NO'.
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Old 06-24-12, 01:38 PM
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Just get cheaper like a full carbon for 7 hundred with 105 on it
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Old 06-24-12, 01:43 PM
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Not likely.
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Old 06-24-12, 01:46 PM
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Dang wish it was like computers haha.
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Old 06-24-12, 01:51 PM
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New technology always costs more due to the R&D costs that need to be recovered and one has to consider that the technology we use on a mid level bicycle is quite remarkable in performance and cost.

Carbon fibre frames and forks are coming down in price as more enter the market and carbon fibre parts are not quite as exotic as they once were.
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Old 06-24-12, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by windhchaser View Post
For instance will bikes made by carbon fiber ever come down in price?
They already have. You can get a decent CF bike for as little as $1500. This is the first I have heard that Wally has CF bikes. I suspect they are the same level of quality as their full suspension Next or Magna crud.
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Old 06-24-12, 02:07 PM
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Originally Posted by Sixty Fiver View Post
New technology always costs more due to the R&D costs that need to be recovered and one has to consider that the technology we use on a mid level bicycle is quite remarkable in performance and cost.

Carbon fibre frames and forks are coming down in price as more enter the market and carbon fibre parts are not quite as exotic as they once were.
+1 The technical term is economy of scale. My one year old aluminum Sora equipped road bike has a carbon fork, as do almost all road bikes at this price level (~$500-800) do. Five years ago they were only found on higher level bikes, and usually as an option.

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Old 06-24-12, 02:12 PM
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Carbon fiber will probably never be really cheap, even considering economy of scale, for the simple reason that it is a time intensive process. You can weld a frame and be done with it far faster than it takes for CF to cure. Time is money.
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Old 06-24-12, 02:15 PM
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There are lots of off-brand carbon fiber bikes for cheap prices. Look at Performance, for example. These bikes are probably comparable to name-brand bikes from 10 years ago and are a great value if you don't need the best that money can buy. Even name-brand companies like Trek, Giant, and Specialized have older tech carbon for much lower prices than their best stuff. These bikes are fine for weekend warrior recreational riders.
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Old 06-24-12, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by CommuteCommando View Post
They already have. You can get a decent CF bike for as little as $1500. This is the first I have heard that Wally has CF bikes. I suspect they are the same level of quality as their full suspension Next or Magna crud.
My comment about their being CF rigs at Wally's was a bit tongue in cheek, as I'm aware that the OP has a thread wanting so much for so little. However, upon further review, this might be just want the OP wants. Not full carbon w/105, but alu main triangle with carbon seat and chainstays and CF fork with Sora STI. https://www.walmart.com/ip/700c-Mens-...d-Bike/5585800
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Old 06-24-12, 02:41 PM
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Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
Define "come down in price". If you mean lower prices than they are now, sure (depending on quality). If you mean full carbon Magnas or Nexts at Wally World for $250, then I'd wager a 'NO'.
In my lifetime I expect to see carbon Magnas and Nexts at Wally World for $250 in 2012 dollars.

Plastic parts like bicycle frames are made in molds which requires very little labor. What you call "full carbon" is actually CFRP or carbon-fiber-reinforced polymer/plastic.

Aluminum and steel bicycle frames are welded from tubes by people.

As labor becomes more expensive in manufacturing countries like China the capital investment in molds will make financial sense in more situations and carbon will move down-market.

I'd bet on electronic shifting too.
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Old 06-24-12, 02:41 PM
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Most new technologyies are more expensive when they are new, but over a long time they will come down slowly.
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Old 06-24-12, 10:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Drew Eckhardt View Post
In my lifetime I expect to see carbon Magnas and Nexts at Wally World for $250 in 2012 dollars.
Ain't gonna happen. Not a good application for that technology, since CF doesn't take sheer abuse and blunt force trauma very well. Furthermore, W-Mart bike customers are perfectly happy buying aluminum and really have no appreciation for the qualities of a finely crafted bike.
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Old 06-25-12, 12:30 AM
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Originally Posted by windhchaser View Post
Just get cheaper like a full carbon for 7 hundred with 105 on it
Funny that you mention it, but I just got a new full carbon for 7 hundred with 105 on it. Of course I can't tell you how I came to that deal and it was the only one to be had, but rest assured, I do have such a bike.

The downside is that it is not that light (21 lbs) but that is somewhat do to the 28 mm tires and the triple crank and long reach brakes. The other side is I think cheaper cf frames are just more over built, not pushing the limits of where they can shave off weight. However it is suiting I guess since it's more of a touring bike anyway.
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Old 06-25-12, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Recumbomatic View Post
Ain't gonna happen. Not a good application for that technology, since CF doesn't take sheer abuse and blunt force trauma very well. Furthermore, W-Mart bike customers are perfectly happy buying aluminum and really have no appreciation for the qualities of a finely crafted bike.
As to the bolded part of that statement; you may have noticed that most of the bikes that Wally sells are full suspension. This is a bit of cynical marketing, because the bike-illiterate who go there are likely to equate complexity with quality and value. They don't realize that they are really cheap shocks. And the cheapest are not made of aluminum, but of "Hi-Ten" steel, which is just common 1018-1020 low carbon steel. Calling it Hi Ten gives the impression that it is something like 4130 CrMo.
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Old 06-25-12, 11:43 PM
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PedalForce gets pretty good reviews for full CF frames, and those can be had for under $700 for a few models. The CX2 makes for a nice commuter ride with eyelets, wide tire/fender clearance, etc. and on the group buys you can snag one for under $550.
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Old 06-26-12, 07:28 AM
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I think technology has more of an effect on price on the high end but that's just a guess. Maybe the prices for high end bikes and equipment is relatively constant.

What seems likely is that bike shops and manufacturers aim for certain price points. Changing technology affects what can be offered at those price points.

For example indexed shifting back in 80's started at the high end models and worked it's way down. Now it's pretty much standard but I don't think indexed shifting made entry level bikes any more or less expensive.
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Old 06-26-12, 07:40 AM
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I'd wager that bikes have gotten more affordable over the years. Not only have the components and quality of most non box store bikes improved, but the pricing has consistently stayed below inflation so even though the 700.00 bike i bought 10 years ago is still 700 bucks today, today that bike is much lighter, has better components, is engineered with newer technology (trickled down from racing most likely). My trek 6500 is a shining example of a great bike 10 years ago, but man, compared it to a 29'er for the same price today and that bigger 29'er is lighter, disc brakes, better components and a more comfortable ride for the same price

also, standardization has been the best thing to happen.. the fact bikes direct can build a bike using standard components at the pricing they do is only possible because of ecnomies of scale and standardizing on components.

but, if 50 million people stopped buying iphones and bought carbon fiber bikes, you betcha the price of that technology would come down big time.
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Old 06-26-12, 10:25 AM
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There is hope, since carbon fiber does not have the longevity and life of steel, in the long term, a shift from predominantly steel frames to carbon fiber frames will mean an increase in the volumes, which will allow unit prices to drop.
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Old 06-26-12, 10:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Recumbomatic View Post
Ain't gonna happen. Not a good application for that technology, since CF doesn't take sheer abuse and blunt force trauma very well. Furthermore, W-Mart bike customers are perfectly happy buying aluminum and really have no appreciation for the qualities of a finely crafted bike.
The real world has a way of catching up with speculation.
https://mobile.walmart.com/m/phoenix#...d-Bike/5585799

I'm guessing next year they'll be even cheaper - thats CHEAPER - not to be confused with 'better'.
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Old 06-27-12, 05:49 AM
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I just wan't to know whats your obsession with expensive carbon bikes? No offense to cf owners but I think most of them are too trendy and loud. CF and trendy styles are not going to make you more of a "cyclist".
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Old 06-27-12, 06:15 AM
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Steel is real.

(BTW that "carbon" walmart bike isn't actually carbon. Check out the specs.)
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Old 06-27-12, 07:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Mos6502 View Post
Steel is real.

(BTW that "carbon" walmart bike isn't actually carbon. Check out the specs.)
IMpressive. They found a way to make a cheap aluminum frame heavier!
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Old 06-27-12, 07:52 AM
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there's only so much carbon on the planet, so over time it will get more expensive to make carbon fiber
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