classicJackets (FS)
classicJackets (FS) Dork
8/6/21 7:46 p.m.

Hi guys, looking for hive advice here.

My FIL has previously built a few sets of "trikes" for adults/kids, including 2 sets of gears/shifters, pedals, etc. His goal at some point was to sell for a profit, but he spent so much buying quality shifter/derailleur parts that the price he'd have to sell for would become unreasonable.

He's back at a point where he's interested in making a batch of 10-20, and would like to source enough components at a reasonable price to make that happen.

Are there any hook ups for a semi-direct or less marked-up sources for these parts? He bought Shimano last time (through a local bike shop) and in general is just hoping to keep quality parts on if/when he builds more. I would love to help him get set up better to make and sell these, and getting his costs down will help him be able to sell more of them. Thanks in advance!

I'll add pictures later..

ae86andkp61 (Forum Supporter)
ae86andkp61 (Forum Supporter) Dork
8/6/21 11:53 p.m.

Sounds like a cool project!

With pandemic-related supply issues, bike parts are in very high demand and very short supply right now, especially Shimano. The bicycle store I manage often buys parts in the quantity range or dozens, and most of our wholesale suppliers are limiting quantities to small single digits if they even have anything available. We've had parts on back order for months. Not trying to be a downer, only a realist, and this is probably about the worst time in history to pursue deals on parts. Retailers, repair shops, online stores, and manufacturers large and small are all fighting for a very small pool of parts. I wish I had some solid advice, but at the moment it is a case of dive into the fray and pay the asking price, or delay the launch a bit until things calm down.

pheller UltimaDork
8/7/21 12:29 a.m.

Microshift maybe? 


Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
8/7/21 7:41 a.m.

One could buy from places like United Bicycle Supply. 

I forgot who we used at the bike shop where I worked in high school, but the prices were decent and they had LOTS of the "low end" components that aren't exactly the sort of drool-over items that bike shops like to sell, but perfect for a small manufacturing run.  Prices for the upper end stuff was usually about 5% less than Supergo, but Supergo also didn't sell generic parts, or Sturmey-Archer components, or have deep discounts on closeout items, which is how I bought a bunch of Suntour XC-Pro components for pennies on the dollar.

classicJackets (FS)
classicJackets (FS) Dork
8/7/21 8:03 a.m.

Thanks for the responses guys. I know very little about bike componenents or brand quality range so I'm flying blind in trying to help source parts. I believe he used Shimano last time to set the "standard"/expectation of all parts used to be quality. If there are others at reasonable price I am sure he'd be open to it.

Pic below!

Tom Suddard
Tom Suddard Director of Marketing & Digital Assets
8/7/21 9:48 a.m.

Yeah, both to save money and increase the odds of finding stuff, I'd shop second-tier manufacturers. I've been happy with the Microshift parts on my gravel bike. 

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) MegaDork
8/8/21 7:30 a.m.

In reply to classicJackets (FS) :

"Shimano" is pretty broad, they make everything from the (THE) best components you can buy anywhere at any price, to bottom-rung stamped steel stuff you'd find on a $90 K-mart bike.  And even the low end components actually work really well, they just weigh a lot more and have a rougher feel to their operation.

dps214 Dork
8/8/21 9:57 a.m.

I guess I don't know what price point he's looking for, but my asphalt bike has 7 speed Shimano stuff on it, I think the derailleur and cassette are like $20 each retail price and I've never been disappointed by them. Looks like he's got a wide range cassette on there, maybe gear down the front so that it can use a standard road cassette? Would kill top speed some but I'm not really sure that's the kind of thing you'd want to do 15-20mph on anyway...

Buying in larger quantities might get a little sketchy but if he can make friends with someone that works at a bike shop (or just get a job there himself) they often get employee discounts on parts.

dxman92 Dork
8/8/21 3:45 p.m.

I've had pretty good luck and experience with Microsoft. Good price for performance ratio.

californiamilleghia SuperDork
8/8/21 4:33 p.m.

my friend in Germany sells high end road bikes and has orders for the next year plus and little hope of getting the bikes or parts to build them.

I think its the same here

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