Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint jobs

Questions about purchasing bicycles and parts

Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby boss » Fri Nov 09, 2012 6:39 pm

justincase wrote:I think your missing the point of the guarantee. I don't expect people to just chuck away the frame but the guarantee will allow then to do so if they are not happy as I will stand by the quality - that Wjy i'm prepared to give such a guarantee.


A shrewd operator would simply buy a bike from you, tell you that they are not happy with it, then get you to purchase frame they actually wanted at a steep, steep discount.

Think really hard about what you are getting yourself into. Offer a return policy and warentee on manufacturing defects. I can, sort of, understand where you are coming from, but you haven't thought about the unintended consequences of your gesture of good faith.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Fri Nov 09, 2012 6:50 pm

As I said the guarantee is only in its incubation phase!
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby JustJames » Fri Nov 09, 2012 7:40 pm

A money back guarantee sends the right signal.

An offer to replace your frame with a branded frame just yells that you don't believe your frame to be as good as the branded counterpart.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Fri Nov 09, 2012 7:59 pm

I would have thought that it suggested that I beieve the frame is as good or better than the other brands, hence I'm prepared to take the risk :?

I dont plan to be in the business of constantly buying other brands frames for my customers!
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby Crowz » Fri Nov 09, 2012 8:04 pm

I don't think having such a speculative warranty will do you any favours. As it's been mentioned before, what's to stop people saying "I don't like the frame" to get a branded one worth twice as much? I would scrap the idea of buying them a branded frame and go with a money back or replacement.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Fri Nov 09, 2012 8:23 pm

Well as i said its still in incubation phase.....
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby ZepinAtor » Fri Nov 09, 2012 8:40 pm

I have a mate up here in Brisbane who is already doing this exact same scheme, although he also imports other brands/bikes as well.

Custom geo frames, road or mountain, custom paint jobs etc etc. As for price ? well he's not giving them away, but he's been working on it for about 18 months now.

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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby Xplora » Fri Nov 09, 2012 9:51 pm

justincase wrote:I would have thought that it suggested that I beieve the frame is as good or better than the other brands, hence I'm prepared to take the risk :?

I dont plan to be in the business of constantly buying other brands frames for my customers!

Your guarantee is stillborn, sadly enough.

Bicycles seem to get stripped and rebuilt more than any other object I know. It is assumed that you'll upgrade parts, mix and match parts. The frame is important, but the rise of UDi2 carbon bikes in Oz shows that the frame is a distant second to the components for a large segment of the market. These people have the potential to bankrupt your business plan very quickly.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Sat Nov 10, 2012 7:33 am

xplora, I got to admit I'm a little confused now! If you have a look earlier on in the thread, you'll see that there has been a lot of discussion and concern about the carbon frame being of my own exclusive mold as opposed to an open mold (shared with other brands). The open mold is far cheaper as I wouldn't have to pay to build all the different molds required in all the different sizes.

So going by your thoughts id be better building a full Campag super record EPS bike with the cheapest possible (throw away carbon frame available).

I may even consider doing this for my own personal (not for sale) prototype just to see the reaction. Would anyone want to see it? I'd be interested to see if anyone would pick up the open mold? Obvously you would here as its been discussed a lot but on another forum??? Could be an interesting experiment......... :wink:
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Sat Nov 10, 2012 7:45 am

Ok, Seems the guarantee idea is not floating people's boat.

I really wanted to go above and beyond - thats how the general idea came up. But I am getting very mixed messages as everyone has their own ideas which is obviously to be expected.

Thinking back, I don't think I've been clear in the warranty idea - I think that the frame replacement for another brand could be for 30 days only subject to no frame damage. Then it would revert to a normal 5+ warranty.

Something along these lines........
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby boss » Sat Nov 10, 2012 9:46 am

justincase wrote:Ok, Seems the guarantee idea is not floating people's boat.

I really wanted to go above and beyond - thats how the general idea came up. But I am getting very mixed messages as everyone has their own ideas which is obviously to be expected.

Thinking back, I don't think I've been clear in the warranty idea - I think that the frame replacement for another brand could be for 30 days only subject to no frame damage. Then it would revert to a normal 5+ warranty.

Something along these lines........


It's not that it doesn't float out boat.

I will buy a bike off you right now for $1800 if you will send it to me, I can say I don't want it, and then request you purchase me a Madone 6.7.

Actually, I'll get a bike for my partner, my mum, my sister, my boss, and my neighbour. They all won't like the frame and will request 6.7's too.

We are just giving you advice that your offer will bankrupt your company before it even gets a chance.

Like I've said several times now. Take a step back, have a think about this, and reconsider.

You shouldn't be on a forum telling people what you are going to do before you've really even thought about it properly. I know you are trying to get our input, but the issue here is that you're coming off as very unprofessional and appear to be making things up on the run.

Based upon what has been said in this thread I would be hesitant to buy a bike from you.

And that's not what you want. You want people to be reading your responses, thinking 'hey, this guy might be onto something', and even considering being a supporter and early adopter of your brand.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby boss » Sat Nov 10, 2012 9:49 am

justincase wrote:xplora, I got to admit I'm a little confused now! If you have a look earlier on in the thread, you'll see that there has been a lot of discussion and concern about the carbon frame being of my own exclusive mold as opposed to an open mold (shared with other brands). The open mold is far cheaper as I wouldn't have to pay to build all the different molds required in all the different sizes.

So going by your thoughts id be better building a full Campag super record EPS bike with the cheapest possible (throw away carbon frame available).

I may even consider doing this for my own personal (not for sale) prototype just to see the reaction. Would anyone want to see it? I'd be interested to see if anyone would pick up the open mold? Obvously you would here as its been discussed a lot but on another forum??? Could be an interesting experiment......... :wink:


It wouldn't be an interesting experiment at all, because Azzuri are doing it already, and from all reports their frames aren't 'throw away'.

Same message to you as above. You're making this all up on the run. And its doing your reputation a disservice.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:44 am

I think you are all missing the point if you think id sell you a holden and replace it with a ferrari...
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:51 am

I also understand that you might think it unprofessional but the whole point of the topic was to discuss what people would like. I dont have anything to offer as yet and i have learnt a lot from peoples feed back. Thats all
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby Ross » Sat Nov 10, 2012 12:34 pm

Perhaps you could try and chat with someone who has recently done the same sort of thing you are proposing to do, someone such as Gerard Vroomen (ex Cervelo). He has just started making and selling his own brand (Open Cycle) of MTBs.

You have to work out why someone will want to buy your bike over another brand. Some people buy on price (ie buy the cheapest), some people buy on brand name and some people buy on a combination of both (ie cheapest brand name they can afford).

Custom paint jobs would interest me personally - not that I'm in the market for a bike or frame - but how many others would be interested and how much extra would they be prepared to pay for it? You would want to make 120% sure that the final custom paint was EXACTLY what the customer wanted and surely there could be no returns (except warranty on cracked frames etc but then would you have to re-customise the paint on a warranty replacement?) as I would expect most custom paint jobs would be very individual in taste and would be very hard to resell.

I don't want to be negative but I'm not sure about marketing open mould frames/bikes as a premium product when you now get manufacturers selling direct to public and as others have pointed out brands like Azzuri which are open mould selling as budget bikes (though I've heard rumours about Azzuri having some religious tie-in [something like Sanatarium the breakfast cereal company owned by Seventh-day Adventist Church] that gives them tax advantages). People who buy expensive brand name products do it for the percieved value and prestige they get. With bicycles people buy them because Cadel Evans has one and he won TdF and is an awesome Aussie cyclist and also for silly reasons like the cred it gives them with their mates at the coffee shop. Why are people going to buy your bike when it's (say) the same price but is unknown and not ridden by anyone/team of any note? They can buy a no-name bike which is essentially the same as yours for 1/3 less $$ that will probably be just as good.

However you do it I expect it will cost a lot of money to set it up.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby Xplora » Sat Nov 10, 2012 8:04 pm

justincase wrote:xplora, I got to admit I'm a little confused now! If you have a look earlier on in the thread, you'll see that there has been a lot of discussion and concern about the carbon frame being of my own exclusive mold as opposed to an open mold (shared with other brands). The open mold is far cheaper as I wouldn't have to pay to build all the different molds required in all the different sizes.

So going by your thoughts id be better building a full Campag super record EPS bike with the cheapest possible (throw away carbon frame available).

I may even consider doing this for my own personal (not for sale) prototype just to see the reaction. Would anyone want to see it? I'd be interested to see if anyone would pick up the open mold? Obvously you would here as its been discussed a lot but on another forum??? Could be an interesting experiment......... :wink:

I think I haven't communicated this well.

There are multiple segments in the Cycling marketplace. You know this. Some want fancy paintjobs, some want fancy brands, some want faster than last night's vindaloo that was sitting on the bench for 3 days. SOME want parts. It is always cheaper to buy a full bike than to just buy parts to put it together. Case in point, the retail on the Forza Pro UDi2 has been 2500, then groupset costs around 2200 and the Solitude wheels are around 500 (retail for both).

You are pitching your bikes at the fancy paintjob/custom crowd. It will probably kick ass with those people. The issue is that this OTHER group, that you aren't targetting (the strip and sell crew) could potentially ruin you if you are promising to charge less than these top brands, but then replace your frame with a top brand frame! What is the motivation for these people to be honest, rather than just using your bikes are a way of getting cheaper parts and cheaper frames than they could buy themselves?

My point is that you need to structure your offer in such a way that the marketplace cannot abuse your goodwill towards them. Sell me an all black Record EPS bike, just make sure that you aren't wasting your time sending me your bike when I can send it back and get a Trek or Cervelo or... for cheaper than I could have bought the Trek to start with. You were trying to position your bikes as reasonable value for a high end frame... don't set yourself up for failure.

I don't think you should have to cater for everyone, I don't think you should do anything you don't want to, but you have say "If my worst enemy got a hold of my bike, what could they possibly do to make me miserable?" because your competition will, your critics will, and some bugger pretending to be your customer will :shock:
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby Mulger bill » Sat Nov 10, 2012 11:34 pm

Why not trademark the name "Chinarello"? You could buy in Chinese cf frames of the customers choice and go from there. Fred knows, enough of the members here have done the same thing for themselves.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby Crowz » Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:15 am

Mulger bill wrote:Why not trademark the name "Chinarello"? You could buy in Chinese cf frames of the customers choice and go from there. Fred knows, enough of the members here have done the same thing for themselves.


As someone new to the market I'd be quite interested in this business. It'd be good to have an Australian to contact about importing.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:20 am

Xplora,
Thats a very well considered response. And I think you've hit the nail on the head well and truly - This ideas is for a niche market - not for everyone
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby justincase » Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:22 am

Mullger bill, thanks but that really is cheapening the whole concept. Isn't it?
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby Crowz » Sun Nov 11, 2012 10:53 am

justincase wrote:Mullger bill, thanks but that really is cheapening the whole concept. Isn't it?


I thought that was effectively the point of your business. If people didn't want a cheaper bike they'd just go buy a top line brand name wouldn't they? Your business isn't going to compete if you're basing it off a differentiation strategy. It is my opinion that you should be employing a cost-leadership strategy and produce the cheapest possible bike that has acceptable qualities to customers, e.g. good groupo/carbon frame/decent paint.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby JustJames » Sun Nov 11, 2012 10:54 am

justincase wrote:Xplora,
Thats a very well considered response. And I think you've hit the nail on the head well and truly - This ideas is for a niche market - not for everyone


You are right that this idea will appeal to a niche market (if at all).

So why do it by a web site? Selling by web works best for standardised items, when the customer knows igzackerly what he wants, and what he wants can be precisely defined, where price trumps service. You are offering a customised product that can't be directly compared to anything else. Firstly, I'm really not convinced that doing it by web is the way to go. Have you ever launched an online brand before?

You're aiming - or should be aiming - at selling a premium product. To my mind, that means you should be focusing on the niche aspects, and looking to deliver a premium "real world" experience. If you want to attract especially discerning customers, you need to come up with something that will attract them. By all means have a catalogue of designs, but either restrict browsing to an in-store intranet, or use it as an internet based showcase where prospects can contact you as the first step in the journey to a completed bike.

Think about the kind of customer you want to attract, and what sort of bike buying experience they are likely to enjoy, and then work towards delivering that.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby damhooligan » Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:04 pm

Crowz wrote:
justincase wrote:Mullger bill, thanks but that really is cheapening the whole concept. Isn't it?


I thought that was effectively the point of your business. If people didn't want a cheaper bike they'd just go buy a top line brand name wouldn't they? Your business isn't going to compete if you're basing it off a differentiation strategy. It is my opinion that you should be employing a cost-leadership strategy and produce the cheapest possible bike that has acceptable qualities to customers, e.g. good groupo/carbon frame/decent paint.



I thought the same...
I thought you wanted to sell a bike cheaper then brand bikes, but add a fancy paintjob to seal the deal ??
Nothing niche about that, but I assumed thats what you wanted..
Cheap, and easy to sell.

But know i get the impression you want niche....
I you want niche, then dont go open molds, create something new, with closed moulds.
Create your own TOP brand , by adding parts of choice and paint sheme of choice.
Then you have a high end bike with a difference you can sell.

SO the question is, do you want to sell cheap bikes, or expensive and exclusive bikes ?
You cant do both.

There are a few companies that do this, like llewllyn and baum .
They make custom frames, and add custom parts and custom paints, that cocncept clearly works.
But as far as I know, no one does this in carbon.
So if thats your way the go, you got a good idea.

However, if you are trying to sell cheap bikes.
Adding groupsets and paintjobs wont be efficient enough to seal the deal, in my humble opnion.
It stays a cheap bike.
Most people you are targetting wil have a strong knowldege of bikes, and would rather do it themselfs...
Its more fun that way.
Unless its extreemly cheap, i doubt it wil work.


Just my 2c.
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby nickl » Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:52 pm

justincase wrote:Road bikes will be the same deal but I'm not prepared to do Aluminium as its a rubbish ride. I only ride steel, carbon or Ti. But as fashion is not for steel and Ti is pricey and also less fashionable, I'm stuck with doing carbon but as one of the other forum members pointed out, it needs to be my own mold to make it exclusive and this is very costly as you need a different mold for every differnet size in the one frame. So if you do 3 different frames, you need 3 x 5 sizes = 15 molds This is big bucks before you even make one frame.


I for one would be interested in an open mold with similar specs and price to http://www.tbe.com.au/SKU.asp?id=174710 with custom paint.

The DengFu FM098 is a pretty popular open mold frame: http://dengfubikes.com/index.php?page=s ... 1&Itemid=1

The FM029 is plainer, but pretty nice too: http://dengfubikes.com/index.php?page=s ... t&Itemid=1
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Re: Bikes with custom components and unlimited custom paint

Postby damhooligan » Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:25 pm

nickl wrote:I for one would be interested in an open mold with similar specs and price to http://www.tbe.com.au/SKU.asp?id=174710 with custom paint.


I actually like the existing paint job... 8)
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