Alternative to Jones H bar ?

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
PJ520
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Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby PJ520 » 14 Feb 2019, 4:15pm

I've just fitted Jones bars to my wife's machine and I don't give a hoot how much they cost. She likes riding with them and I couldn't get her on the bike at all beforehand.
You only live once, which is enough if you do it right. - Mae West

reohn2
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Joined: 26 Jun 2009, 8:21pm

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby reohn2 » 14 Feb 2019, 5:11pm

PJ520 wrote:I've just fitted Jones bars to my wife's machine and I don't give a hoot how much they cost. She likes riding with them and I couldn't get her on the bike at all beforehand.

I have a Jones loop copy(Alpkit,no longer available)on my Genesis Longitude and I'm more than happy with them :)
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blastroundthehead
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Joined: 30 Jun 2017, 10:17pm

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby blastroundthehead » 14 Feb 2019, 6:07pm

The Ribble Adventure 725 comes with their own version of The Jones, brandnamed Flight.

Sadly, for me, they released this bike a year after I invested in a customised Genesis Vagabond which I am exceptionally happy with ... but it’s not the Ribble :(

I visited the shop but they don’t sell it as a separate, although they told me that it would become available ... I’m still waiting.

https://www.ribblecycles.co.uk/ribble-adventure-725/

The initial image has a weird flat bar, scroll down a little to see the flight bar...

Fat tyre kicker
Posts: 12
Joined: 21 Apr 2017, 3:54pm

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby Fat tyre kicker » 14 Feb 2019, 6:17pm

I've used the Jones bars for two years on my Salsa Mukluk fat/semi fat tourer and
Found them excellent, the Planet X copies are sold out in their first 2 batches. I'm
Currently looking at changing to the Surly Moloko bars....just because I like the
Look of them :D

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fossala
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Joined: 21 May 2013, 8:29am

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby fossala » 14 Feb 2019, 6:34pm

Got them on my fat bike and also had them on my Thorn raven tour. Only bars that I would ride all day that aren't drops.

gregoryoftours
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Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby gregoryoftours » 22 Feb 2019, 7:01pm

mreadman wrote:Old thread, but these have just appeared and look like a dead ringer for the Jones H Loop:

https://bit.ly/2DDafUZ

I've got one of these on order. They do look very similar with the same 45° sweep. Planet X have several other swept bars coming soon including one that resembles the Jones m bar, although the sweep is not 45° in that case. I wonder how long it'll be before Mr Jones gets wind of it and shuts it down again. Not long, I guess.

https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/HBOOBB/on ... -handlebar

https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/HBOOGB/on ... -handlebar

https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/HBOOMB/on ... -handlebar

reohn2
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Joined: 26 Jun 2009, 8:21pm

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby reohn2 » 22 Feb 2019, 7:06pm

gregoryoftours wrote:
mreadman wrote:Old thread, but these have just appeared and look like a dead ringer for the Jones H Loop:

https://bit.ly/2DDafUZ

I've got one of these on order. They do look very similar with the same 45° sweep. Planet X have several other swept bars coming soon including one that resembles the Jones m bar, although the sweep is not 45° in that case. I wonder how long it'll be before Mr Jones gets wind of it and shuts it down again. Not long, I guess.

https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/HBOOBB/on ... -handlebar

https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/HBOOGB/on ... -handlebar

https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/HBOOMB/on ... -handlebar


I'm always puzzled as to how he can,how do you patent such a thing as a handlebar shape :?
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tablatom
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Joined: 27 Mar 2019, 10:35am

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby tablatom » 27 Mar 2019, 10:37am

The On-One Geoff Handlebar was back in stock in March this year, I just got mine after a 4 month wait.

Blimin bargain.

reohn2
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Joined: 26 Jun 2009, 8:21pm

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby reohn2 » 27 Mar 2019, 10:52am

tablatom wrote:The On-One Geoff Handlebar was back in stock in March this year, I just got mine after a 4 month wait.

Blimin bargain.

Still showing out of stock despite me askjng to be emailed when back in :?
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slowster
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Joined: 7 Jul 2017, 10:37am

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby slowster » 27 Mar 2019, 12:39pm

reohn2 wrote:
gregoryoftours wrote:I wonder how long it'll be before Mr Jones gets wind of it and shuts it down again.

I'm always puzzled as to how he can,how do you patent such a thing as a handlebar shape :?

As I understand it patent law in the US is different to the UK, in that you do not need to prove that your invention meets all the requirements to get a patent. Instead the validity/strength of the patent is only effectively confirmed if the patent holder takes someone to court for copying their innovation. The court then makes the judgement on the merits of the patent (whether the innovation was sufficiently novel etc.) and decides if the patent is valid and should be enforced by the court. In the UK (and Europe?) it is more difficult to get a patent because it is necessary to convince the patent office first of the merits of the application.

There's a thread on this on Singletrackworld, and one poster has pointed out that there is Design Rights protection in the EU, which would probably apply, but only if the product were launched in the EU (which was never likely given that Jeff Jones is based in the US).

As for the implication that Mr Jones is a wealthy powerful person who is able to use his lawyers to get the sale of the copies stopped, the reality is that up until a few years ago Jeff Jones was a one man band, and I think that even now he only has a few employees. Similarly the UK/EU importer and distributor is a one man operation. There is probably zero likelihood of them being able and willing to afford a legal battle with Planet X, which is a much larger business. It's true that previously Alpkit started to sell a copy of the Jones bars and stopped doing so, but I believe that was not down to any threats from Jeff Jones. I think it was simply pointed out to them that they were selling a knock-off of the Jones bars (something which they might not have fully appreciated, because the bars are apparently a 'catalogue' item being offered by a chinese manufacturer), and so they decided to stop selling them because they presumably felt it was wrong to sell a knock-off of someone else's design (something which Alpkit probably felt more keenly because they are themselves a relatively small company).

But I guess that imagining, with no actual grounds for doing so, that Jeff Jones is a rich businessman with expensive lawyers makes it easier in some people's minds to justify purchasing a knock-off copy of his handlebar design. You might not feel quite so comfortable and pleased with yourself at having got a bargain if you knew that it was just a small business, and that the damage to the business caused by the widespread copying of his design might mean that he would have to make employees redundant.

Ultimately there's an important issue at stake here, which is how much protection is given to those who innovate, which is becoming more sharply defined as a result of the vast manufacturing capability of China and the weakness of Intellectual Property laws in China, with the result that unscrupulous importers like Planet X can buy copies of almost anything. Indeed, it would not surprise me if Planet X made its decision to buy the bars knowing that Jeff Jones was too small to have any comeback, whereas they would not do so if the product being copied was from the likes of Specialized (whose lawyers went so far as to order a bike shop to change its name from Cafe Roubaix Bicycle Studio, because Specialized had trademarked 'Roubaix' in the USA and Canada).

As it stands, it looks like the playing field is skewed against the small innovator in favour of large wealthy corporations. Small innovators often have to take major risks in investing their time and money to develop their designs and bring them to market. If they find that their products are rapidly copied, then that will deter them, and innovation will increasingly be confined to the mega corporations - in other words, it will be stifled. Because, although various aspects of Jeff Jones' designs have been seen before, in many respects he went against the flow of current bicycle design to produce bikes that are a relatively unique combination of those various aspects, including the bars. He developed his products not by sitting at a CAD machine, but over many years by a process of progressive experimentation to find the optimum design. If he had not come up with the design of his bars, I doubt they would exist: the major handlebar and component manufacturers would probably never have been interested in spending time and money developing such bars and bringing them to market.

reohn2
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Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby reohn2 » 28 Mar 2019, 9:51am

Slowster
Thanks for the information,I still can't see how Jeff Jones can claim a patent,and or how it could be enforced in the EU.
His Jones Loop comes with an extortionate price tag of £130 last time I looked :shock:
In a similar vein is the Spurcycle bell currently retailing at £50 in the UK :- https://www.sjscycles.co.uk/bells-horns ... -bell-raw/

Some years ago unaware of the Spurcycle bell and on the look out for a neat bell solution for five bikes I came across the Rock Bros bell on ebay:- https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Newest-RockB ... ect=mobile
So bought one to see if it was any good,I was very satisfied with it's performance and how well made it was so wrote a review on here and was told I'd bought a copy of the Spurcycle but it didn't bother me at all,because bottom line was the price.
Would I pay £50 for a bell,well no and I suspect most people wouldn't,and I wouldn't pay £130 for handlebars,if Jeff Jones and Spurcycle weren't so greedy and charged realistic prices for their stuff I'd probably be more inclined to see their POV and they'd sell more bells and handlebars.
All that said I really like the look of Jeff Jones framesets with the truss fork :wink:

EDIT:- just looking on the JJ website,in the US his Loop handlebars are $79,which is reasonable,so I dont know why they're so expensive over here,it seems it's not Jones who's the greedy one :? .

Edit 2:- I agree with the Jones philosophy https://youtu.be/T4rxBquR5O4
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slowster
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Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby slowster » 28 Mar 2019, 11:14am

reohn2 wrote:I wouldn't pay £130 for handlebars,if Jeff Jones and Spurcycle weren't so greedy and charged realistic prices for their stuff I'd probably be more inclined to see their POV and they'd sell more bells and handlebars.

The bars are certainly very expensive compared to most other handlebars, but I think it's wrong to simply jump to the conclusion that Jeff Jones is greedy,

I think that when he started to develop the bars he made them in titanium himself, like his frames at the time. They were a very niche and even more expensive item then, and it probably took him some years to persuade potential customers and the cycling press of their merits. Eventually sales would have risen to the point where he did not have the capacity to make the bars himself, and instead the volumes were large enough for an order to get them made in Taiwan or China. The numbers involved were still small and he was still refining and tweaking the design. Increasing awareness and sales probably meant he got to a point where he could get a manufacturer to make a larger order in butted aluminium, which is both lighter and less expensive than titanium. More recently he has introduced a plain guage aluminium version which costs less.

In other words, it's been a long haul for him to develop the bars, refine the designs, and build up sales. He has had to start out small, and I imagine that each time he submitted an order to his manufacturer, he has increased the size of the order as sales have increased. He has effectively created the market for his bars from scratch, because the design was so unusual and nothing really like it existed beforehand. And after all those years a knock-off merchant has ripped off his design. It's not surprising that they are able to sell their version for a lot less:

- they've incurred none of the development costs
- they can take advantage of the market/demand for the bars that Jeff Jones has slowly built up: no need to start up small with a modest production run, instead the market is now large enough to take advantage of producing very large orders to maximise economies of scale.

Which brings us back to the issue of the lack of protection for small innovators. Although Titec briefly licensed an early version of his bars, and Surly bought and fitted them for some years to some of its bikes, the lack of design protection probably meant that it was unlikely that he could do a deal with a large component manufacturer to buy the design or make them under license: why pay for that when it's clearly not realistically possible or practical to prevent other manufacturers in China just copying the design anyway, and the likes of Planet X buying and selling them. So Jeff Jones was probably left with no choice but to continue selling the bars through the small network of distributors and dealers that sold his frames, which inevitably limited potential sales, and consequently also limited order sizes and the potential to reduce prices by making much larger orders for bigger volume discounts.

What I think is particularly wrong is to characterise him as greedy, when there is no evidence for doing so. We don't know the margins and profits on his bars, nor how much profit his business makes overall, but I doubt he is doing anywhere near as well as the owner of Planet X. But like I said, maybe telling yourself that he is greedy makes you feel more comfortable about buying a knock-off of his bars.

Edit - With regard to the US vs UK pricing, that is something commonly complained about for lots of goods. I think US prices often omit sales tax, because it will vary depending on which state the buyer is in. Importing the bars from the US will attract both 20% UK VAT plus a tariff as well.

PJ520
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Location: Seattle WA USA

Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby PJ520 » 28 Mar 2019, 1:49pm

US vs UK pricing. May have something to do with the size of their markets, the countries' populations are 326M vs 63M.
You only live once, which is enough if you do it right. - Mae West

reohn2
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Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby reohn2 » 28 Mar 2019, 4:38pm

Slowster
I don't know but I don't think the developement on the loop bar is as complicated as you think,initially his design was a straight bar with ends welded on at a 45degree backsweep and were made on licence by TiTec,I believe he parted comany with them once he'd sourced a maker in the US and then the loop bar was a a further step.
I can understand he'd like to keep a hold of the design but a 45deg back sweep is nothing new,though the loop is.
My edit withdrew my 'greedy' claim when I checked hs US price.But it begs the question as to why he doesn't ship direct from his Taiwanese manufacturer into his various dealers which would keep the cost down dissuade copies and sell more handlebars.
Admittedly it may not be that simple though other manufacturers do it.
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dondelion
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Re: Alternative to Jones H bar ?

Postby dondelion » 28 Mar 2019, 6:41pm

No love for bullmoose bars? They have a similar swept back style to the Jones. I'm currently riding the Baja Divide on my Surly Troll with them (slowly, fully loaded and with panniers) and they are a revelation after years on drops.

Planet X sell Nitto's version for £70 https://www.planetx.co.uk/i/q/HBNIBULL9 ... -handlebar