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Lowdown on bike parts companies..

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Lowdown on bike parts companies..

Old 10-26-18, 02:31 PM
  #1  
bravotwozero
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Lowdown on bike parts companies..

So, I just wanted to get an idea of who the good/high end vs crappy parts manufacturers are.

From my understanding, campognolo is about as premium as you can get, which is why you also pay premium $$$ for them.

As for shimano, they are varying levels of quality, some shimano parts are top shelf, others are bottom of the barrel. How to tell which one is which?

There's also SRAM, and their quality is comparable to the high end shimano stuff?

Is this accurate, or am I completely clueless here?
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Old 10-26-18, 02:38 PM
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You sound very new at the fine art of arguing about why Shimano is or isn't better than Campy etc. It also sounds like you're focusing on just drive trains rather than the entire bike part ecosystem? Maybe not.

I also think you're conflating quality with cost and lightness. I've never had campy, so can't argue there, but if you're talking about road bikes, Shimano 105, ultegra and dura ace are all excellent with slight improvements in function & less weight as you get more expensive. Like... I think my ultegra drive train on one bike just "feels" a little better than the 105 on another bike, even though they both function very well. Same with SRAM - I've had Force and upgraded it to Red over the years, never had a problem. The operation is very different from Shimano and SRAM is fairly (in)famous for some quality issues back in the day (maybe still, I don't know) but I haven't had any serious issues other than a RD recall one year.
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Old 10-26-18, 02:44 PM
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Best thing to do is find a coffee shop on a Sunday morning and figure out which bike is being talked about the most. That will have the best bling parts on it.
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Old 10-26-18, 02:52 PM
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Originally Posted by bravotwozero View Post
Is this accurate, or am I completely clueless here?
the second part.

- Campy isnt some incredible brand. Its limited which makes it exclusive, but its also limited for a reason. Or better said- for reasons. I dont remember the last shop I was in with new bikes with Campy. It just isnt necessary to pay the higher prices, so most dont.
- Shimano makes products at all price points. Its the same as Toyota, Honda, Ford, etc. Itd be absurd to call Shimano 'good' or 'bad' based off a single product.
- SRAM makes produts at all price points. Its the same as Toyota, Honda, Ford, etc. Itd be absurd to call SRAM 'good' or 'bad' based off a single product.

Each of these brands shifts differently.

Then there is Microshift which is a value brand that is Shimano compatible. And other brands too, with even less influence and market share.
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Old 10-26-18, 02:53 PM
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Here is a recent article explaining the functional differences among Shimano, SRAM and Campagnolo groupsets. It also explains the hierarchy within each company's line.
https://www.bikeradar.com/us/gear/ar...oupsets-41610/

For what it's worth, I agree with TrojanHorse above. As you go up the cost food chain functionality improves, but only slightly when you get to the upper tiers, and weight diminishes. I've never owned any very top end equipment, but apparently at the very top there is some loss in durability in favor of weight.

On a purely subjective level, some (most?) people are more comfortable with the feel/ergonomics and shifting mechanisms of one brand over another. I'll steer clear of which brand is best.
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Old 10-26-18, 02:58 PM
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thank you, appreciate the bluntness, haha!

I'm new to the cycling world so I will readily admit I don't know jack about bikes or bike parts for that matter...
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Old 10-26-18, 03:03 PM
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Heya, let's talk about hubs, headsets, anodized purple seatpost clamps, and titanium bolts while we're at it!
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Old 10-26-18, 03:55 PM
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Don't confuse Quality with Price point, Even Campag has Potenza and Super duper Record

they both work, just the Potenza wont require a 2nd mortgage on your house to buy..

Out in the real world No spare and replacement parts for Campag will be here if you break stuff.

Its all Special order 2 day shipping..


where the market dominant Shimano in mid range cost, may be repairable on that day..
Sram is also Showing up on Pac Rim Bikes nost brands, their production factories are over there too..


North america Imports few Complete bikes from Europe , ,Italy ..
so what does come in is at the higher prices.

since they to import bikes from Asia , too, When the buyers are cost conscious.






...
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Old 10-26-18, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
Campy isnt some incredible brand. Its limited which makes it exclusive, but its also limited for a reason. Or better said- for reasons. I dont remember the last shop I was in with new bikes with Campy. It just isnt necessary to pay the higher prices, so most dont.
- Shimano makes products at all price points. Its the same as Toyota, Honda, Ford, etc. Itd be absurd to call Shimano 'good' or 'bad' based off a single product.
BITD at least, Shimano would cut deals with OEM bike manufacturers if they spec'ed their whole product line with Shimano. For a bike company offering a wide price range of bikes, this can be quite compelling. Campagnolo only offers product at the upper-midlevel to high end price range. A company would need to forgo a substantial Shimano discount to spec some of their bikes with Campagnolo components. This type of policy is what decimated the French bicycle component industry, and others (think "SunTour") back in the 80s.
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Old 10-26-18, 05:38 PM
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Campy is my favorite but I've read about people having issues with Potenza. Even low end a Shimano Claris group is good enough for most riders, it works 100% fine. No experience or interest in SRAM, though I just bought some of their single speed cranks.
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Old 10-26-18, 06:02 PM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by bravotwozero View Post
I'm new to the cycling world so I will readily admit I don't know jack about bikes or bike parts for that matter...
The major brands like SRAM and Shimano have superb quality at the top end of their lines. Even their mid-level mountain-bike gear -- I'm more of a mountain biker -- is rock-solid reliable.
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Old 10-27-18, 11:30 AM
  #12  
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And As OEM factories are Located in Asia, Taiwan , a lot of them ,
Logistics of siting component warehouses and factories on the same Island , lowers cost,
Sram and Shimano dominate those, being on that side of the pacific.

Campag has its smaller, factories in Italy and Romania,
though some components get sourced from Taiwan Companies as well..


& Most bikes in USA come through West Coast Container Ports..

...
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Old 10-27-18, 02:31 PM
  #13  
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Its not the brands its the era.

Until the 70ies almost everything was simple, sturdy and overegineered to work for decades.

After that it slowly but steadily turned into complicated, thin, weak crap that has to be replced every couple of years.
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Old 10-27-18, 04:28 PM
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Eastern Europe made all the parts for the bikes used there , Like Czech Favorit ..

because they did not trade with the west,

until the Berlin wall dissolved with it, the Warsaw pact..
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Old 10-28-18, 11:45 AM
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Trickle Down

Note that just like electronics and computers there is trickle down. Current Shimano Tiegra is like last generation 105, and 105 is much like last generation Ultegra etc.

Last edited by bikeaddiction1; 10-28-18 at 11:47 AM. Reason: Accidently posted before finishing
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Old 10-28-18, 01:41 PM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by Kovkov View Post
Its not the brands its the era.

Until the 70ies almost everything was simple, sturdy and overegineered to work for decades.

After that it slowly but steadily turned into complicated, thin, weak crap that has to be replced every couple of years.
I don't know that I agree with that. My commuter has 10s Ultegra that is at least 10 years and 30K miles on it without issue or replacing anything besides cables.
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Old 10-28-18, 02:17 PM
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Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
You sound very new at the fine art of arguing about why Shimano is or isn't better than Campy etc. It also sounds like you're focusing on just drive trains rather than the entire bike part ecosystem? Maybe not.

I also think you're conflating quality with cost and lightness. I've never had campy, so can't argue there, but if you're talking about road bikes, Shimano 105, ultegra and dura ace are all excellent with slight improvements in function & less weight as you get more expensive. Like... I think my ultegra drive train on one bike just "feels" a little better than the 105 on another bike, even though they both function very well. Same with SRAM - I've had Force and upgraded it to Red over the years, never had a problem. The operation is very different from Shimano and SRAM is fairly (in)famous for some quality issues back in the day (maybe still, I don't know) but I haven't had any serious issues other than a RD recall one year.
You don't have to go as high as Shimano 105 to get a quality part. However, I do think there's a consensus that Shimano 105 is the best balance between reliability (quality) and weight. Beyond that, the diminishing return curve slope levels off significantly.
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Old 10-29-18, 02:55 AM
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Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
I don't know that I agree with that. My commuter has 10s Ultegra that is at least 10 years and 30K miles on it without issue or replacing anything besides cables.
Sure but there is also Huret Sveltos that shift reliably since 1968. With 1 cable change max. Or SA AW's since 1957. with the original cable. Both on pretty much abused bikes.
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Old 10-30-18, 07:48 AM
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There was some really nice stuff made in the 1970s and early 1980s, prior to integrated brake/shifter doodads.

SunTour Superb was just that.
First Gen SunTour Cyclone, very nice.
DiaCompe Gran Compe brakes
Sugino Mighty Competition cranksets

Who says that you have to buy modern stuff?
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Old 10-30-18, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by mtb_addict View Post
I feel mixed about Shimano. On one hand, there products seems very very good and I'm almost addicted to it. On the other hand, I read about there dirty business tactics since the 80s, against smaller startup businesses, like SRAM. It looked like Shimano doesn't like compeition and will try to ruin anybody by selling at below price or conspiring with or threaten vendor not to carry their competitors' product, until competition is dead. If not for the bit of protection from the legal system, SRAM would not have survived the bullying and ruthless onslaught.
This is hardly unique to cycling components.
The large company tries to keep competition at bay thru leveraging its size. - This is a common theme thru most all industries.

And if SRAM were the big dog, you better believe they would be doing the same thing(s) Shimano has done.
Using size to influence buyers and using patents to restrict development are both extremely common ways for a large supplier to reduce competition.

By all means have mixed feelings about Shimano, but remember that the 'small' guys are no different than Shimano.
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Old 10-30-18, 02:13 PM
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Originally Posted by mstateglfr View Post
This is hardly unique to cycling components.
The large company tries to keep competition at bay thru leveraging its size. - This is a common theme thru most all industries.

And if SRAM were the big dog, you better believe they would be doing the same thing(s) Shimano has done.
Using size to influence buyers and using patents to restrict development are both extremely common ways for a large supplier to reduce competition.

By all means have mixed feelings about Shimano, but remember that the 'small' guys are no different than Shimano.
Take Walmart for example.
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