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Quality of new Diamondback bikes?

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Quality of new Diamondback bikes?

Old 01-29-17, 06:54 PM
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Quality of new Diamondback bikes?

So back years ago when I was a kid, Diamondback used to be the bees-knees when it came to bikes, or at least me and all my friends thought so. Looking for a new hybrid/road bike, I've come across a couple newer Diamondbacks, what's their build quality like? I had a Diamondback mountain bike several years ago, and while it was sturdy, it was a tank- way too heavy.

Anyone with a newer Diamondback, specifically a hybrid or lower end road bike, care to chime in on it's quality? Much appreciated
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Old 01-29-17, 07:31 PM
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I have built up 3 different Dback road bikes for friends/coworkers in the last year and one of my kids has a diamondback kids hybrid.

The brand, like every common bile shop brand, has high end, midlevel, and low level budget models.
Trek has some real junk for the money, has some quality, and has some elite high end. I mention them because its a massive brand.

Diamondback is certainly a value brand, versus a lifestyle brand like Surly or an expensive brand like Specialized(relative to value).
Just because it isnt a value brand doesnt mean Diamondbacks are lacking in quality when compared to alternatives in a given price range.
Typically, Dbacks will be cheaper priced for the same quality and component spec. In other words, you then get more for the same price of comparable bike shop brands.

Dback has pushed the alternative road segment of bikes and their Haanjo models are really well spec'd for the prices.
They also seem to have a theme of using disc brakes on road bikes more than other companies.

Like any other brand, the cheaper the cost, the lower the component quality.

The road bikes i built up were all solid and they were more entry level (claris and sora shifting). They are just as nice as Sora bikes by Trek and Specialized and cost less.

Google the Diamondback corporate site and sign up. The discount code CYCLE4PERK gives discounted pricing which is what the 3 people i have built bikes for used to buy their bikes. This is what really makes the brand a great value. Also, the build is easy. They are legitimately 85% built when they arrive. A shop could build it and tune anything needed for $75 or so, if needed.
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Old 01-29-17, 07:37 PM
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What is a DVD?
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Old 01-29-17, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Peugeotpx10Fjm View Post
What is a DVD?
Do
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Old 01-29-17, 08:22 PM
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I have a 2011 Diamondback Steilacoom CCX, which was marketed as an entry-level cyclocross bike. It's a Kinesis aluminum frame, probably on par quality-wise with other entry/mid-level aluminum frames you'd find in a bike shop. I use it for gravel trails and such. I've got nicer bikes, but this one's a keeper, too.
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Old 01-29-17, 09:32 PM
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No offense, but this type of question is pointless.

Diamondback is a brand owned by Accell, a Dutch company that also owns Raleigh, Ghost, Batavus, Redline, LaPierre etc. The frames, like all major brand frames these days, are made by contracted factories who make frames for everyone. In other words the Diamondback brand, like most brands, is completely meaningless. It's all down to whatever Accell specs and Diamondback doesn't have a particularly strong brand identity. I'm sure they're fine.

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Old 01-29-17, 10:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
No offense, but this type of question is pointless.

Diamondback is a brand owned by Accell, a Dutch company that also owns Raleigh, Ghost, Batavus, Redline, LaPierre etc. The frames, like all major brand frames these days, are made by contracted factories who make frames for everyone. In other words the Diamondback brand, like most brands, is completely meaningless. It's all down to whatever Accell specs and Diamondback doesn't have a particularly strong brand identity. I'm sure they're fine.
I never understand this sort of view as it totally ignores whats actually happening.

Yes, most aluminum frames are made by a large handful of frame makers, but that in no way means the brand is meaningless. Thats some really odd reasoning.

Giant may produce frames for multiple companies, but that doesnt mean the frames are all the same. They can be(and are) different in shape, design, and quality.
Companies design and have the manufacturers build the design. Designs from company to company are different in the 3 ways I mentioned.
Different tubing quality is used. Different proprietary technology is used. Different shaped tubing is used.

You cant really say that Scott, Colnago, Trek, and Giant frames are all the same just because a Giant factory produces them.

Trek's Isospeed is a perfect example. That isnt part of other bike comapny's frames.
How a company wants their tubing shaped or butted varies, even compared to other companies with frames made by thensame manufacturer orneven in the same factory.



I would agree that in the under $1000 market, there will be little difference in meaningful frame technology between brands and it ultimately comes down to fit and spec (mostly wheels and brakes).
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Old 01-30-17, 06:03 AM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
I never understand this sort of view as it totally ignores whats actually happening.

Yes, most aluminum frames are made by a large handful of frame makers, but that in no way means the brand is meaningless. Thats some really odd reasoning.

Giant may produce frames for multiple companies, but that doesnt mean the frames are all the same. They can be(and are) different in shape, design, and quality.
Companies design and have the manufacturers build the design. Designs from company to company are different in the 3 ways I mentioned.
Different tubing quality is used. Different proprietary technology is used. Different shaped tubing is used.

You cant really say that Scott, Colnago, Trek, and Giant frames are all the same just because a Giant factory produces them.

Trek's Isospeed is a perfect example. That isnt part of other bike comapny's frames.
How a company wants their tubing shaped or butted varies, even compared to other companies with frames made by thensame manufacturer orneven in the same factory.



I would agree that in the under $1000 market, there will be little difference in meaningful frame technology between brands and it ultimately comes down to fit and spec (mostly wheels and brakes).
Please reread my second to last sentence.
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Old 01-30-17, 07:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
Please reread my second to last sentence.
I read the second to last sentence the first time and I read it again. Yup, it says what I thought it said the first time. I agreed with it in the context of sub $1000 bikes.


Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
Diamondback is a brand owned by Accell, a Dutch company that also owns Raleigh, Ghost, Batavus, Redline, LaPierre etc. The frames, like all major brand frames these days, are made by contracted factories who make frames for everyone. In other words the Diamondback brand, like most brands, is completely meaningless.
This is what I disagree with. You claim that the name on the side of the tubing is completely meaningless for most brands. Zertz and Isospeed alone should show you that the name on the side does result in different technology and design. If those werent enough, then just simply looking at same genre frames from half a dozen brands should make it obvious that brands have different designs even thought the frames may be made in the same factory(s).
Again- different butting, different material(6061 or 7005 aluminum), different shaped tubing, and more makes frames unique by brand even when made in the same factory.
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Old 01-30-17, 12:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Hiro11 View Post
No offense, but this type of question is pointless.

Diamondback is a brand owned by Accell, a Dutch company that also owns Raleigh, Ghost, Batavus, Redline, LaPierre etc. The frames, like all major brand frames these days, are made by contracted factories who make frames for everyone. In other words the Diamondback brand, like most brands, is completely meaningless. It's all down to whatever Accell specs and Diamondback doesn't have a particularly strong brand identity. I'm sure they're fine.
Coming from a bike shop background - I completely agree with this.

In other words the Diamondback brand, like most brands, is completely meaningless.
This is the key part, most brands - it doesn't really matter. They're all about the same. Functional and representative of their price point, the bike shop qualify bicycle market is vicious and there are few deals to be had on the OEM front. Most bikes from most brands are going to be the same around a given price point. A lot of manufacturers try to differentiate their product to acquire more market share but a lot of times the consumer is not fooled and purchases based on other factors.

As wages in the United States continue to stagnate higher tier manufacturers are attempting to elevate their offerings to higher price points because fewer sales at higher unit cost are often the most lucrative way to sell a product in a stagnating economy.

This is very obvious with Specialized - they are the undisputed king of new technologies that offer little functional improvement for the regular rider or offer improvement at a significant price increase. The bicycle is a well developed product, improvements to the end user's experience are so incremental that they must be marketed extremely heavily lest they get ignored. I think this is a lot of what the sentiment from mstateglfr is coming from. Yes, lots of brands present themselves as different to differentiate in the market. Functionally they're pretty much the same. Great example of this is original Zertz inserts. They did nothing to change the riding experience when released but were marketed like the second coming. So one side says the differences are too small to matter, other says they're not. I'm in the former myself, but certainly don't begrudge anyone who holds the opinion of the latter.

Anyone with a newer Diamondback, specifically a hybrid or lower end road bike, care to chime in on it's quality?
The 2016 models were better than the 2015 models. It seems like the build houses in Taiwan and China have been implementing some QC protocols or perhaps better employees are filtering down the wage market as their economies change in response to increased competition in the international trade. Either way I would expect 2017 models to be good as well.
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Old 01-30-17, 01:28 PM
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I bought a 2016 DB Haanjo Metro last spring. So far I've been quite happy with it, and have had no problems. It's comfortable and fun to ride.

Granted, if you want to know if it's reliable, ask me in 20 years.

I'm a long time recreational and utilitarian cyclist, not competitive. I do my own maintenance and expect to keep a bike for many years, so I tend to judge a bike from that perspective.

Everything is exactly as advertised. What I would call the "interesting" parts such as the drivetrain, brake system, and tires, are respectable name brand stuff (Shimano, Tektro, Schwalbe).

The "boring" parts are generic, but appear to be of high quality based on fit and finish. I'm referring to the parts marked with the DB brand as generic.

My only mistake was not knowing about the discount programs offered online. D'oh! But that's water under the bridge. I've talked to people who assembled DB bikes from out of the box, and they encountered no problems.

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Old 01-30-17, 02:35 PM
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Diamondback (today) = Bikesdirect, but with lesser components at a higher price. (Same is true of Fuji, and many other 2nd-tier brands). You just pay more/get less with those brand names, due to their retail marketing/mark-up.
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Old 01-30-17, 03:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Stucky View Post
Diamondback (today) = Bikesdirect, but with lesser components at a higher price. (Same is true of Fuji, and many other 2nd-tier brands). You just pay more/get less with those brand names, due to their retail marketing/mark-up.
Good lord.

Diamondback is sold in retailers like REI and also bike shops(one not even 3mi from me carries the brand). Performance shops also carry DBack.
I am not knocking BD bikes in terms of quality for the money, but that site is just terrible marketing and is dishonest in its pricing. It slaps defunct historical brands on the tubes, advertises a dishonest MSRP, then goes from there.

I am unaware of a following of consumer complaints for Diamondback or Fuji like there is with BD.
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Old 01-30-17, 03:28 PM
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I am genuinely surprised at how prevalent the view is that a frame is a frame is a frame since they come from the same factories.
Each brand has its own level of quality control and bike frames are built to meet price points. There absolutely are varying levels of frame quality coming out of factories and its up to each brand to ensure said quality meets their expectations. Some expect lower quality.
This is true for steel, this is true for aluminum, and its true for carbon fiber.

Butting tubes and shaping tubes has a serious impact on riding feel and these things are some of what differentiates brands from one another.
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Old 01-30-17, 08:04 PM
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Bike frames are built to meet price points, and for most commodity brands the frames are going to be functionally the same at a given price point. The brand isn't telling the factories in Taiwan/China what to make as far as frames are concerned. The factories are working with their own in house designers and market analysis teams to figure out what is selling now and what is going to sell in the future and then designing bike frames based on the fundamentals of what makes a frame work for the given application.

Look at enough bikes and it's obvious a huge portion of the frames are either designed by the same handful of people who all learned about what makes a good bike frame of they're copying each other. One recent one I got a chuckle out of is the 2016 Mongoose Selous Expert and the 2016 Haanjo Comp. Frames are essentially the same with some minor differences. With the same wheelset they ride almost exactly the same. The 2015 and earlier Selous Expert was the same frame as the 2013 Scattante Dx350 with a flattened top-tube.

Anyway, this has been the case since time immemorial. It's always been hobbyists arguing about what makes one double butted tubeset better than the other because brand identification quickly becomes personal to a lot of people. But really it doesn't matter, people should be arguing about tires and freehub engagement points. Those two things will really change how a bike rides.

Most consumers are not going to ride enough or know enough to feel the different between double butted or triple butted, square hydroformed downtube or truncated kammtail. Frame feel can also be obliterated by tire choice and tire pressure.

So for most people and most brands, one Gravel Grinder double-butted aluminum frame is the same as the next Gravel Grinder double-butted aluminum frame.
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Old 02-01-17, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Look at enough bikes and it's obvious a huge portion of the frames are either designed by the same handful of people who all learned about what makes a good bike frame of they're copying each other. One recent one I got a chuckle out of is the 2016 Mongoose Selous Expert and the 2016 Haanjo Comp. Frames are essentially the same with some minor differences. With the same wheelset they ride almost exactly the same. The 2015 and earlier Selous Expert was the same frame as the 2013 Scattante Dx350 with a flattened top-tube.
Did I not pull the correct pics? The Selous and Haanjo models you mention arent the same. The seatstays alone are wildly different. Or is that one of the 'minor differences' you mention?
If you compare 2 aluminum frame carbon fork adventure/gravel bikes that are in their 2nd or 3rd year of production, I wouldnt be surprised to see similarities. Each bike will have had an opportunity to be redesigned and take advantage of what is currently popular. They will each have disc brakes, a straight fork most likely tapered at this point, similar geometry since geometry is being further and further defined for what makes a certain type of bike(in all categories)...just not sure why its a surprise for them to share similar characteristics.

But to me, these arent the same frame. I consider 'minor differences' to be something like the Mongoose has 2 bottle mounts inline on the downtube. A totally different looking seatstay isnt, to me, a minor difference. That isnt even getting into anything else that looks different.
These bikes arent the same frame with different paint and logos.


Along the lines of this topic- the dropouts on a VeloOrange Piolet are the same(i believe) as a Soma Saga. Are they the same bike or, like components, do frames share common designs at this point?

2016 Mongoose Selous Expert



2016 Diamondback Haanjo Comp


Lemme know what I am missing here...
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Old 02-01-17, 10:24 AM
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Bought a Dback Century 2 road bike on impulse last year. It was the year before model, so got a great price on it. (REI) 105 shifting components, FSA crank, and no label rim brakes (that work very well)


Only have about 500 miles on it, but am very pleased. Only quibble is the overdone graphics, haven't learned to like them..
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Old 02-01-17, 10:46 AM
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I have owned three Diamondback bikes in the past two years. An Axis, Atroz, and a Mason Trail. They've all been great bikes, and wouldn't hesitate to buy another one.
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Old 02-01-17, 01:01 PM
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I have a fair amount of experience in manufacturing. At my previous employer, we did all of the things discussed in this thread:

1. Off the shelf parts (actually, made to order)

2. Custom parts, designed by us based on the customer's requirements

3. Custom parts, designed by the customer

4. Similar looking parts sold to different customers, due to style trends in the industry

5. Being asked to duplicate a competitor's part, which we typically refused to do

We had an efficient design process, and "quick change" manufacturing, meaning that custom parts really didn't cost much more than off-the-shelf. Even when parts were "designed" by the customer, we provided design input, because we understood the technology and manufacturing process, and how it affected the performance of the part.

Based on these observations, it would shock me if multiple bike frames being made under one roof didn't cover the same gamut of possibilities. It's just how things are done in modern times. It could be a disappointment for someone seeking some unique identity associated with a bike brand, but from a simple consumer standpoint of just wanting a nice bike to ride, it strikes me as OK.
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Old 02-01-17, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Motolegs View Post
Bought a Dback Century 2 road bike on impulse last year. It was the year before model, so got a great price on it. (REI) 105 shifting components, FSA crank, and no label rim brakes (that work very well)


Only have about 500 miles on it, but am very pleased. Only quibble is the overdone graphics, haven't learned to like them..
Fortunately, my DB is bright yellow, so the graphics can't really make it any more obnoxious.
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Old 02-01-17, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Gresp15C View Post
Fortunately, my DB is bright yellow, so the graphics can't really make it any more obnoxious.

This is my exact bike, pic culled off the net:





I guess there's no doubt what make it is, from ANY angle! (Just to make it worse, I even added blue sidewall tires.)
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Old 02-01-17, 06:03 PM
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Here's mine. I counted something like eighteen DB logo's. Somebody was having fun.
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Old 02-01-17, 07:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Gresp15C View Post
Here's mine. I counted something like eighteen DB logo's. Somebody was having fun.
I'm digging that bike.
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Old 02-01-17, 09:36 PM
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I can attest to the quality of the old Diamondbacks. My son is still riding my 1999 (last century eh?) Diamondback Parkway where he goes to school.

The only bike better (that we have) is my wife's 1999 Gary Fisher Nirvana, which she rides regularly and refuses to get rid of... I changed the twist grip shifters (just the twist grips) last year and test rode the bike. I was amazed at how smooth the changes were, how smooth the ride was. We have changed a wheelset and consumables and that's about it. I can hardly estimate the mileage (kilometreage?) probably north of 30k.
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Old 02-02-17, 07:50 AM
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Originally Posted by Spoonrobot View Post
Look at enough bikes and it's obvious a huge portion of the frames are either designed by the same handful of people who all learned about what makes a good bike frame of they're copying each other. One recent one I got a chuckle out of is the 2016 Mongoose Selous Expert and the 2016 Haanjo Comp. Frames are essentially the same with some minor differences. With the same wheelset they ride almost exactly the same.
So here are the measurements between the Selous Expert and Haanjo Comp. A 56cm frame size was used for the comparison.

SAME-
- chainstay length of 430mm
- fork rake of 45mm

DIFFERENT-
- Top Tube length of 56cm for DB and 57.4 for MG.
- Seat Tube length of 56cm for DB and 55.2cm for MG.
- Wheelbase length of 1032mm for DB and 1052mm for MG.
- Headtube length of 175mm for DB and 170mm for MG.
- Headtube angle of 71deg for DB and 72deg for MG.
- Seattube angle of 73deg for DB and 73.4deg for MG.


Add to this the thought that the bottom bracket drop is also different, at least based on the pictures listed in this thread. I couldnt find the Selous Expert bottom bracket drop measurement so I left that measurement off the list.


Also, the top tube shape is different between the 2 bikes.


How are these the same bike?
Yes, the differences are minor, but thats the reality with most bikes in a category even when clearly made by totally different factories or even when 2 bikes are hand built from small builders.
mstateglfr is offline  

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