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Hi guys

I was wondering what you guys think of entirely chinese branded bikes? I noticed one on aliexpress. The price and config seem ludicrous. Has anyone ever tired these? I have spoken to many people in China and they say that the reason why it's so cheap is that the Chinese branding makes the bike much cheaper. But surely it would not make it only $50 new.

Does anyone have their opinions/experiences about these sorts of bikes?

http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Bicycle-road-bike-disc-automobile-race-bi...

p.s I'm researching bikes for my friend who wants to buy a temp training bike before upgrading to a new road bike in the summer. I'm mainly looking at old steel bikes on gumtree but this particular bike caught my eye.

43 comments

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Gkam84 [9086 posts] 2 years ago
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I have no idea, but at that price Road.cc could buy one to test  3

Including postage, it comes in at £40

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farrell [1950 posts] 2 years ago
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Its got an "apologetics chain attached". That's a big selling point for me.

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PJ McNally [591 posts] 2 years ago
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Please Road.cc buy one and test it!

I particularly like the look of that "Sihmano" cassette  3

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farrell [1950 posts] 2 years ago
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It could be that the company involved is doing these so cheaply in order to get a reputation and feedback, using it as a loss leader before ramping the prices up.

They could be scammers.

The bikes could actually just be that cheap.

£20 for the folding bikes. Madness.

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themartincox [499 posts] 2 years ago
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Blue and white, I want it in blue and white!

And THAT is how you do a call to action!

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thre3aces [11 posts] 2 years ago
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Well, truth be told poor English and knock off designs are to be expected in my opinion. But at the end of the day. If it's for someone who doesn't ride seriously and only to be used as a temporary bike I'd say that it's perhaps "acceptable"

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dave atkinson [6223 posts] 2 years ago
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i like the sound of this Bicycle road bike disc automobile race bicycle aluminum ring sports car 21.

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drfabulous0 [409 posts] 2 years ago
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A mate of mine once asked me to help him with a £40 Chinese bike, immediately I noticed that the paintwork was horrendous, I have sprayed £1 black spray paint onto rusty handlebars and got better results. Before getting the frame into the stand I noticed that there was no way to attach the round seatpost to the teardrop shaped seat tube. Overlooking these two major defects the bike itself, which in fairness had been ordered as a "small" was in fact a tiny facsimile of a real bicycle, which could only have been ridden by a borrower. When he messaged the seller they ignored him, he eventually got his money back but it took months, this was on DHGate.

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bashthebox [751 posts] 2 years ago
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I've just bought a Chinese frame, actually - will make a thread to document the built up when I've got a moment.
I bought from a company called Hong Fu, and was pleasantly surprised by most stages of the process.
What I've ended up with, for around $700 including paintwork and postage, is a frame that weighs 900g, forks that weight about 350g, carbon bars and carbon bottle cages. The paintwork is custom to my own design - they weren't able to provide the exact colours I was after, but it's pretty close and the paint looks great. Crisp and clean.
Just starting the build now, but I can't see any of the defects many people talk of - that of holes being painted over, misaligned hangers, etc.
Dealt with a lady called Nancy whose English was great, and was helpful and responsive on her email.
Really impressed so far, and can't wait to get the build done and ride the beautiful thing.

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thre3aces [11 posts] 2 years ago
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Be wary my friend. Cheap carbon is always a danger zone. Yes you're right. There probably aren't defects on your model but to be honest problem with genetic chinese wholesalers is that they simply don't check their products thoroughly enough. But good to hear you've had a good experience so far.

The size thing may be an issue. But it does claim to have 700c wheels so it can't be that small. But Yea, I wouldn't expect anything more than cheap crap. But i guess cheap crap is enough for a temp bike

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Gordy748 [110 posts] 2 years ago
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Almost all carbon frames are made in China/ Taiwan these days. Apparently Thailand is starting to beocome another manufacturing source.

By almost all I mean NOT high-end Treks, Colnago C59/60, Time, Look, Calfee, Guru, Seven, IF, Formighli, Passoni, and other custom builds. Everything else, including Specialized, Pinarello, Canyon, Wilier, in fact every pro-tour team supplier, is Asian based.

Pinarello, for example, order [N x 100's] number of raw frames at $300 a pop. They respray and finish the bike in Italy and charge $3,200 for it. Because the Chinese component is less than 10% of the value of the total product, legally they can say it is made in Italy.

There is an element of QC and guaranteed warranty associated with buying your Pinarello from the italians as opposed to from the Chinese. That said, the breakage rates of all carbon frames appears similar. It could be argued the lay-up of the Chinese versions is not correct so the genuine article is better, but I know a local Pinarello dealer who swears that most Pinerello copies are in fact the genuine article, just taken to a local paint shop to get finished.

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velonista [7 posts] 2 years ago
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thre3aces wrote:

...Cheap carbon is always a danger zone...problem with genetic chinese wholesalers is that they simply don't check their products thoroughly enough...

On what are you basing your horror story? Chinese whispers don't count. Unless you yourself have actual first-hand experience with "genetic chinese wholesalers" [sic], then you don't know what you're talking about.

If you do know, then provide links to back up what you know. Otherwise, you're just repeating some urban legend you heard from your third cousin's friend's next door neighbor over in Timbuktu who blogged about it that one time in 1999.

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bashthebox [751 posts] 2 years ago
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Thank you, Velonista, for typing what I was about to.
Of course I was wary of buying direct; I was worried about quality control, communication and service. Happy with all three - and extremely happy with the product thus far. Proof is in the riding of course, but that's to come.
Did the internal cable routing today, and despite reading up on it and learning that it would be nigh on impossible to do without major hair loss, I did it quite quickly. So from that, I'm going to conclude it's a well designed and well thought out frame.
Or it's a cunning plot by those naughty Chinese people to lure me into thinking it's a good frame.

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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I'm liking the new advert for the VW Golf.

Can't quite put my finger on why it springs to mind here.......  17

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joules1975 [347 posts] 2 years ago
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Gordy748 wrote:

By almost all I mean NOT high-end Treks, Colnago C59/60, Time, Look, Calfee, Guru, Seven, IF, Formighli, Passoni, and other custom builds. Everything else, including Specialized, Pinarello, Canyon, Wilier, in fact every pro-tour team supplier, is Asian based.
.

You can pull Specialized from that list, as although made in Taiwan, they are made by Merida, who as part of their QC pull one in every 50 bikes off the production line to check that it was built correctly, including testing the frame to destruction to ensure it meets the the required design characteristics and safety standards.

In fact, Merida, spesh and giant are the three I'd happily ride. The rest I wouldn't buy, not because they are bad, just that they are not as good, but at least they have proven warranty backup, unlike the direct Chinese frames.

Oh, and although I can't provide you with evidence to backup my claims, I have seen it (e.g Merida test procedures and photos of it).

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Flying Scot [918 posts] 2 years ago
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My own company ( not cycle related) uses some Chinese components, our experience is that even the samples at times are completely useless - to the point of a waste of perfectly good material -

Even the stuff that passes our rigorous QC QA can fail massively in the next seemingly identical batch dispatched.

In fact, by the time duty is paid, it's becoming more viable to buy from warranted and certified EU sources, with reliable quality and shorter lead times.

I really wouldn't discount the cost of QA and QC testing and inspection the big manufacturers put into this, it could easily double the cost of a generic frame.

Unless I had a mate down at the X ray department at the local hospital, I'm not sure I would ever fully trust an unknown source carbon frame, however if you know what you're doing and what to keep looking for, I don't see that there is anything wrong with the approach in general.

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thre3aces [11 posts] 2 years ago
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velonista wrote:
thre3aces wrote:

...Cheap carbon is always a danger zone...problem with genetic chinese wholesalers is that they simply don't check their products thoroughly enough...

On what are you basing your horror story? Chinese whispers don't count. Unless you yourself have actual first-hand experience with "genetic chinese wholesalers" [sic], then you don't know what you're talking about.

If you do know, then provide links to back up what you know. Otherwise, you're just repeating some urban legend you heard from your third cousin's friend's next door neighbor over in Timbuktu who blogged about it that one time in 1999.

Mate chill. I'm not attacking chinese generic goods. I am in fact quite a big fan of it when it comes to electronics.

Electronic is in fact a great example. If you get a generic phone it's wayy cheaper. You can see where They've taken shortcuts because it's a phone. Any tech savvy person can tell. And in most cases you can live with that.

But the problem with a carbon frame is well... How can you tell? You can't see the shortcuts (if any, and you're probably right, there most likely isn't) . But if there is on that particular batch, maybe a worker was being a dope. You just can't know. And if it fails and let's say snaps on the road then you're screwed.

Also, in case anyone cares my safety sense has come about from my recent accident where I managed to wipe out on a corner at 40mph. My t3 aluminium frame was perfectly fine but had it been badly made carbon it could have snapped and God knows what would have happened after that.

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bashthebox [751 posts] 2 years ago
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It surely depends hugely on the company though. 'Chinese bikes' is quite a broad catchment - you only have to look at what's on alibaba or aliexpress to see how many different suppliers there are, and how many focus on making fakes, for example.
If you widen your terms to 'Chinese components (not bike related)', and then apply what you've learned back to bikes.... what you're doing here is equivalent to telling me not to buy coffee from my local cafe because you had a bad sausage roll from your local cafe.

What I've learned so far:
Do research. A lot of research. Read forums, take notice of the experiences people have had.
Look at pricing and promises - if it looks too good to be true, then it probably is.
Ask questions of the supplier, the answers you get should be indicative of the level of service you might expect.
Obviously be wary of a lot of things - you're dealing with people on the other side of the world, there's a lot that can go wrong in terms of communication breakdown, confusion, and I guess cultural misunderstandings.
Be very, very skeptical of anyone trying to do an official review of any of these frames. I'm thinking specifically of Velobuild, because from what I understand the person/people who run that moderate the forum heavily, have special deals with certain suppliers and it's in their interest to aggressively promote the frames which they make the most money from.
More generally speaking, I'm not sure there'll be many people buying these frames who also ride top end branded frames - so it's really hard to get reliable comparisons. You won't ever get sites like Road.cc, bikerader, cyclingnews etc reviewing them partly because their revenue comes from the major brands, and mostly because the supply of Chinese bikes isn't particularly relevant to the sites' readers; it's just too niche.

Anyway, this is a work in progress. Keep your eyes peeled for updates.

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velonista [7 posts] 2 years ago
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joules1975 wrote:

...at least they have proven warranty backup, unlike the direct Chinese frames...

Where'd you hear that? Your wife's boyfriend's third-grade teacher overheard it in a noisy aboriginal barber shop while vacationing in the wilds of Borneo?

I repeat. If you yourself don't have first-hand experience of the direct Chinese frames warranty system, then you're just regurgitating the same played-out urban myth that every other hater that came before you has peddled to you!

At least provide ONE link to back up what you KNOW about the direct Chinese frames warranty system! Just ONE! Not what you heard. Not what you believe. Not what you WISH. What you KNOW.

One link is easy! Right? Failing that, the only thing Chinese you have any real experience with, is Chinese whispers.

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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Chinese helmet, anyone?  4

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allez neg [497 posts] 2 years ago
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The above will be my last comment on this matter. I've just heard that I've been made redundant due to outsourcing and all future vaguely pithy comments from my username will be supplied by someone from China while the original Allez Neg will be learning how best to say "D'you want fries with that?"

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bashthebox [751 posts] 2 years ago
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I'm sure that's meant to be a cunning critique on using foreign workers to supply goods, but since most of the big bike brands use the same foreign workers to supply their bikes, it doesn't quite hold up.

The R&D is a big cost for the major brands for sure, which the open mould sellers then piggyback on. First massive saving. They use zero marketing beyond their websites and minor social media presence - second massive saving. Their sales and supply chain starts and stops at the factory. Third massive saving.
QA - yes, this is a valid point, and one it is, of course, hard to know the answer to. My frame had a little QC check sticker on, and a signature from a worker on another. One assumes there's some sort of QA going on, even if it's just checking all the holes are in the right place. Whatever, I've not seen anyone who has bought from the bigger Chinese sellers report any frame failures except for in the case of a bad crash - and can you show me any carbon frame that would escape from a bad crash without failing?

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thre3aces [11 posts] 2 years ago
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Well, guys I think it's much too easy to speculate on Chinese goods. But the purpose of the thread was to see if anyone actually had an experience and so far it seems positive. I may consider getting on as a secondary bike. And just be very very careful on the downhill.

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thre3aces [11 posts] 2 years ago
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Well, guys I think it's much too easy to speculate on Chinese goods. But the purpose of the thread was to see if anyone actually had an experience and so far it seems positive. I may consider getting on as a secondary bike. And just be very very careful on the downhill.

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velonista [7 posts] 2 years ago
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road.cc wrote:

Cyclist sues Halfords for £1 million, claims steerer tube "failure" led to severe facial injuries

A cyclist left disfigured when the steerer tube of a bike he had bought from Halfords allegedly snapped is suing the retailer for £1 million.

Joseph Love, then aged 19, suffered severe injuries to his face in the incident in Gravesend in February 2009 which he says have “wrecked” his life, reports Metro.

Gerald Martin QC, acting for Mr Love, told the High Court that the steerer tube of Mr Love’s £250 Saracen Raw 2 bike had sustained a “sudden and catastrophic failure,” with the cyclist hitting a crash barrier head-first.

He said: “We ask the court to bear in mind that marketing literature for the Saracen Raw 2 bicycle would lead an ordinary person to assume that fairly robust riding is to be expected – as it says, 'give the trails a kicking'."

Mr Martin claimed the bike was “defective at the point of sale.”

His client, now aged 24, said that the bike had been assembled and inspected by Halfords staff, and that it had also undergone a full service at the retailer with no defect found.

James Medd, acting for Halfords, described expert evidence prepared on behalf of Mr Love as “deeply flawed.”

The retailer also insisted that the cyclist had damaged through adding lights and mudguards [the specifics of why such standard accessories would have caused damage isn’t reported – ed], a claim Mr Martin rejected.

The case continues.

Isn't it interesting that people who are always scare-mongering about so-called "cheap Chinese carbon crap" spontaneously combusting mid-ride, how they conveniently neglect to bring up the fact that we hear about cheap British crap failing way more often?

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velonista [7 posts] 2 years ago
1 like
road.cc wrote:

Cyclist sues Halfords for £1 million, claims steerer tube "failure" led to severe facial injuries

A cyclist left disfigured when the steerer tube of a bike he had bought from Halfords allegedly snapped is suing the retailer for £1 million.

Joseph Love, then aged 19, suffered severe injuries to his face in the incident in Gravesend in February 2009 which he says have “wrecked” his life, reports Metro.

Gerald Martin QC, acting for Mr Love, told the High Court that the steerer tube of Mr Love’s £250 Saracen Raw 2 bike had sustained a “sudden and catastrophic failure,” with the cyclist hitting a crash barrier head-first.

He said: “We ask the court to bear in mind that marketing literature for the Saracen Raw 2 bicycle would lead an ordinary person to assume that fairly robust riding is to be expected – as it says, 'give the trails a kicking'."

Mr Martin claimed the bike was “defective at the point of sale.”

His client, now aged 24, said that the bike had been assembled and inspected by Halfords staff, and that it had also undergone a full service at the retailer with no defect found.

James Medd, acting for Halfords, described expert evidence prepared on behalf of Mr Love as “deeply flawed.”

The retailer also insisted that the cyclist had damaged through adding lights and mudguards [the specifics of why such standard accessories would have caused damage isn’t reported – ed], a claim Mr Martin rejected.

The case continues.

Isn't it interesting that people who are always scare-mongering about so-called "cheap Chinese carbon crap" spontaneously combusting mid-ride, how they always conveniently neglect to bring up the fact that we hear about cheap British crap failing way more often?

Avatar
thre3aces [11 posts] 2 years ago
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velonista wrote:
road.cc wrote:

Cyclist sues Halfords for £1 million, claims steerer tube "failure" led to severe facial injuries

A cyclist left disfigured when the steerer tube of a bike he had bought from Halfords allegedly snapped is suing the retailer for £1 million.

Joseph Love, then aged 19, suffered severe injuries to his face in the incident in Gravesend in February 2009 which he says have “wrecked” his life, reports Metro.

Gerald Martin QC, acting for Mr Love, told the High Court that the steerer tube of Mr Love’s £250 Saracen Raw 2 bike had sustained a “sudden and catastrophic failure,” with the cyclist hitting a crash barrier head-first.

He said: “We ask the court to bear in mind that marketing literature for the Saracen Raw 2 bicycle would lead an ordinary person to assume that fairly robust riding is to be expected – as it says, 'give the trails a kicking'."

Mr Martin claimed the bike was “defective at the point of sale.”

His client, now aged 24, said that the bike had been assembled and inspected by Halfords staff, and that it had also undergone a full service at the retailer with no defect found.

James Medd, acting for Halfords, described expert evidence prepared on behalf of Mr Love as “deeply flawed.”

The retailer also insisted that the cyclist had damaged through adding lights and mudguards [the specifics of why such standard accessories would have caused damage isn’t reported – ed], a claim Mr Martin rejected.

The case continues.

Isn't it interesting that people who are always scare-mongering about so-called "cheap Chinese carbon crap" spontaneously combusting mid-ride, how they always conveniently neglect to bring up the fact that we hear about cheap British crap failing way more often?

That is a good point. But I suppose with cheap crap you get in Britain it's possible to tell most of the time since you can see it in the shops. Issue with Chinese imports via generic wholesalers is that at least for me; sometimes you get great bargains for amazing value. Other times you just get cheap crap and it's sad to see good material go to waste.

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PJ McNally [591 posts] 2 years ago
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Road.cc any news on when you're getting the " Bicycle road bike disc automobile race bicycle aluminum ring sports car 21" in for review?

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dave atkinson [6223 posts] 2 years ago
1 like

they've sold out. i'm eyeing up one of these for £36 shipped though  3http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Luxury-2014-jade-dragon-tricycle-old-age-...

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farrell [1950 posts] 2 years ago
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Dave Atkinson wrote:

they've sold out. i'm eyeing up one of these for £36 shipped though  3http://www.aliexpress.com/item/Luxury-2014-jade-dragon-tricycle-old-age-...

Seriously, do it - A review of that would be brilliant!

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