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Frame up builds more common in Europe?

Old 10-21-18, 05:15 AM
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Frame up builds more common in Europe?

Is it more common in Europe than in the U.S. to do modest, frame up builds? Chain Reaction has a few house brands such as Vitus and Brand X that provide moderately priced hardtail frames. I can't find anything similar from a U.S. based seller. I guess I'm just curious why that would be?
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Old 10-21-18, 09:20 AM
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Surly, black mountain cycles, Breezer, nashbar, all city, randombikeparts, soma, etc.
all have frames to build and are what i would say are moderate in price.
some are more moderate than others for sure.


I know what you are seeing though. Planetx has a bunch of frames for pretty low prices. Nashbar used to be that place for the US market, but their private label frames have basically disappeared.
they used to have a 26er and 29er frame in steel and aluminum, a touring steel frame, road frames in aluminum and carbon, cyclocross frames in steel, aluminum, and carbon, and probably more that I've forgotten. All for really low prices.

fyi- identical nashbar frames are currently sold by cycleforce which is a components distributor for a bunch of junk brands(in addition to Ridley and Merckx).
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Old 10-21-18, 10:02 AM
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Originally Posted by JonathanGennick
Is it more common in Europe than in the U.S. to do modest, frame up builds? Chain Reaction has a few house brands such as Vitus and Brand X that provide moderately priced hardtail frames. I can't find anything similar from a U.S. based seller. I guess I'm just curious why that would be?
I was going to object, but then read your post before replying: We just built up a dirt-jumper for the kid. We got the frame ... at Chain Reaction.
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Old 10-21-18, 10:15 AM
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The biggest reason might be components are much cheaper in Europe and whole bike might be cheaper in US.
I built two bikes and most of components were from Europe because of price.
my one MTB and road bike were on clearance deal so entire bike was much cheaper.


Last edited by kimguroo; 10-21-18 at 11:12 AM.
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Old 10-21-18, 10:49 AM
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Another possible reason is that there's a plethora of decent used bikes in the US, and a bike with a good frame and trashed components is the perfect raw material for a frame-up build.
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Old 10-21-18, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by kimguroo
The biggest reason might be components are much cheaper in Europe and whole bike might cheaper in US.
This, I suspect.

I have built up several frames---and always order parts from the UK. But possibly the same kind of taxers and fees and dealer arrangements that make group sets so expensive in the U.S. make assembled bikes expensive in the UK? I know I can now buy bikes comparable to what I build for less, assembled, in the U.S. Why would anyone in the U.S. go through the hassle of buying individual pieces and assembling a bike when there is something with all the same parts on sale, ready to ride, from many major manufacturers?
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Old 10-21-18, 11:11 AM
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Ohhh... I need to get back to Italy.

The last time I was there, I found the local Colnago shop. They had a bin of a half a dozen bare Colnago Master frames. Then the technician was upstairs doing a scratch bike build.

At that time, I don't think anybody worth their salt did their own maintenance. But, those micro shops ruled.

If that small specialty shop model survived, then I could imagine the builds.

The Bianchi shop had a row of fully built bikes, from their lowest quality to some very nice ones, all Celeste Blue.

I'd imagine that China wrecks havoc on the model, as they may like to ship out whole bikes. Nonetheless, it is pretty pointless to get a bike, and immediately start swapping out all the components. Seat, Stem, Cranks, Sprockets, etc.
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Old 10-21-18, 11:16 AM
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Then and Now

30 years ago, steel pro level road bike frames , Italian marques,
shipped to the dealers ,
Painted, but unfinished frames, and expected them to use their own
thread chase, ream and face frame prep tool set.

so Campagnolo got to sell a lot of frame prep tool sets ..

and tool wear was distributed widely to those shop owners..


Now, ? IDK..




....
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Old 10-21-18, 11:26 AM
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Frame is the only reason to build bikes for me.
buying whole bike is much cheaper in US so there is no reason to build bike in US.
it will cost 20-30% more in my opinion.
I don’t know I will ever have a chance to build road bike but Yonex’s carbonex frame (disk brake) is my dream bike to build.
Unfortunately, it’s extremely expensive T_T.
650g frame and yonex’s Carbon technology is impressive though.
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Old 10-21-18, 11:30 AM
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US, most brands source from, Pac Rim, and not from European frame builder assembly factories,
in fact many Euro bike companies, to compete in price, have subcontracts to similar sources ,
just ports of entry for the containers are different ..
Rotterdam, Southampton, and so on.. vs Long Beach , Tacoma, Oakland.

you asking about pro bikes owned by few, in Europe?
or the transportation bikes owned my many?

...

Last edited by fietsbob; 10-21-18 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 10-21-18, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob
30 years ago, steel pro level road bike frames , Italian marques,
shipped to the dealers ,
Painted, but unfinished frames, and expected them to use their own
thread chase, ream and face frame prep tool set.

so Campagnolo got to sell a lot of frame prep tool sets ..

and tool wear was distributed widely to those shop owners..


Now, ? IDK..

....
One thing I've been thinking. Much fewer bikes seem to be outfitted with Campagnolo off the shelf here in the USA. One may even see more SRAM than Campagnolo.

So, perhaps they get more Campy custom builds in Italy, and Europe.
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Old 10-21-18, 01:58 PM
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Out on the coast, and perhaps across the USA (except Boulder CO,
& other big metro places)
Campag is impractical unless you get everything online ..
Unlike PDX or EUG. none is stocked in shops..

a Broken Chorus RD , was a special order delay , so the rider had to hang out
eating drinking and enjoying our accommodations, while a replacement was being special ordered.




...

Last edited by fietsbob; 10-21-18 at 02:02 PM.
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Old 10-21-18, 02:11 PM
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Eh, for the most part off the shelf bikes these days suit anyone's role well enough. Beyond small fit things like saddle and stem, I'd have to want something incredibly specific to not find a suitable option already available.
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