Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

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Brucey
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Brucey » 17 Oct 2020, 10:39pm

this is the 2020 'ultra' Galaxy

Image

it is (according to Evans) described as being good for a 15kg luggage load (presumably on the rear rack). Itself it weighs 15kg. Which doesn't seem unreasonable to me considering it has 36 spoke wheels, disc brakes, pedals, mudguards, rack and is fitted with marathon tyres. A lot of supposedly lighter bikes would weigh about the same when similarly fully equipped. Shimano Sora 3x9 transmission parts and disc brakes are fitted. So overall, it isn't a bad bike per se, even if the rear dropouts are not the design I would use for load-carrying (in common with a number of bikes from Dawes and other makers, the eyes look like they could easily be broken off the dropout; appearances are not deceptive).

However it is -I think- symptomatic of the whole approach that Dawes still try and play on the fact that Reynolds Tube Co is still based in Birmingham and that this bike has some Reynolds tubes in it. The fact that the tubes are few in number and 520 spec is brushed over. The fact is that 'Reynolds 520' tubes have never been anywhere near Birmingham; they are made in Taiwan under license from Reynolds which in practice means they are pretty much using the Reynolds name on standard aircraft quality CrMo tubing. The frame is then welded up 'somewhere' in the far east. I remember seeing 'product of Vietnam' or something on some bike boxes from Dawes a while back, but it could be a number of different countries that are making the bikes now. This doesn't make it a bad bike or a bad frameset necessarily, just one which has virtually nothing (apart from the name) to do with Dawes, Reynolds or anything else in the heritage of the company.

Trading on the heritage of the company is exactly what the new owners of Dawes bought the name to do; it is as predictable as night following day. Nor is the bike terrible, either. The real problem is that consumers are expected to pay £1200 for a bike that is clearly exclusively manufactured in the far east, having a spec which is easily bettered at that price. No wonder there is 'lack of demand'.... :roll: :roll:

If they had wanted to compete in the current market they should have perhaps made a model called 'Galaxy Gravel' or 'Galaxy Adventure' with a more contemporary colour scheme, and sold it with fatter tyres, no mudguards etc .

cheers
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Bikes`n`guns
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Bikes`n`guns » 17 Oct 2020, 11:45pm

If I was buying a Galaxy it would be a 20yr old version.
If companies start replacing quality goods with cheap replicas they should expect that item to have a very finite lifespan.

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Sweep
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Sweep » 18 Oct 2020, 7:59am

rogerzilla wrote:I don't know about Galaxy weights but my LHT frameset is a couple of ounces lighter than my old 631 Hewitt Cheviot frameset.

Surprising interesting factoid. I have a hewitt,would always have assumed the LHT was heavier. Any insights into why it isn't?
Sweep

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Sweep
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Sweep » 18 Oct 2020, 8:06am

al_yrpal wrote:Whats a Galaxy.... basically just a frame with a collection of various Japanese bits bolted on to it. Plenty of alternatives. Guess the angst is all about the name? Hardly anyone will miss it..... especially amongst the young.

Al

True. I think some folk think bikes are like cars, fully integrated products, so that the pizza xi32ry is vastly different to the tart 324rz and never shall they meet. Of course modern bike marketeers would like folks to think things are like this so that they will ditch both as so last year and buy a flan 3tyrd for twice the price.
Sweep

Bonzo Banana
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Bonzo Banana » 18 Oct 2020, 9:22am

pwa wrote:The name Dawes may mean something to some people over a certain age, but it means next to nothing for younger people. It is a name from the age when you could go out and buy a Rover car. I think the brand name has a small and declining value now. Sadly.


That's not how it works, once you have a classic brand you can market it as having heritage and being around for ages you can make the product seem a safe choice. When the chinese brands couldn't get a foothold in different markets they would buy up brands that they could market on their past innovation and heritage etc even if all they sold with it was a generic product that copies other brands. So you can use an old brand to appeal to new customers you don't have to have known the brand at its peak.

Looks like Dawes cycles is coming up to its centenary in 2026 again useful for marketing purposes.

Lets not forget those people that knew the brand in the past either they might give a healthy sales boost too even if they only boosted sales by 5 or 10% that is still significant and once you get new bikes out there then obviously the brand starts building up in people's minds again.

Most of the factories in Asia will significantly lower their prices depending on volume. They might have a minimum order of 200 units but buy 2000 units and you may get a 30% saving compared to a small order of 200 units. As volumes decrease costs per unit significantly increase. An importer who can only sell 500 units per year of a model would have to run a very tight ship in the UK to make a profit and wouldn't have the margin to do extensive research to find the best factory in the far east.

Tandems volumes on the Galaxy likely reached a level where they couldn't generate a profit due to their high costs per unit at such low volumes.

philsknees
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby philsknees » 18 Oct 2020, 9:41am

Bonzo Banana wrote " When the chinese brands couldn't get a foothold in different markets they would buy up brands that they could market on their past innovation and heritage etc even if all they sold with it was a generic product that copies other brands. So you can use an old brand to appeal to new customers you don't have to have known the brand at its peak.

Sounds a bit like the CTC/CUK scenario? :lol:

Carlton green
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Carlton green » 18 Oct 2020, 1:07pm

I looked at the picture of a current Galaxy as posted above by Brucey and wonder if somehow there’s been a mix-up at the factory. Have they made a mistake and put the wrong labels on two completely different bikes? What the current version of the Galaxy has to do with earlier bikes bearing the same name I do not know. If I was looking for a Galaxy (to me that used to mean a proper touring bike that you could also commute on) then the current version wouldn’t make it to my list of potential steeds. I don’t know what name that that bike should have, but ‘Galaxy’ is clearly one that is not appropriate.

pete75
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby pete75 » 18 Oct 2020, 1:55pm

Brucey wrote:this is the 2020 'ultra' Galaxy

Image



Isn't that what is now called a gravel bike?

pwa
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby pwa » 18 Oct 2020, 2:53pm

Bonzo Banana wrote:
That's not how it works, once you have a classic brand you can market it as having heritage and being around for ages you can make the product seem a safe choice. When the chinese brands couldn't get a foothold in different markets they would buy up brands that they could market on their past innovation and heritage etc even if all they sold with it was a generic product that copies other brands. So you can use an old brand to appeal to new customers you don't have to have known the brand at its peak.

Like the way we are all clamouring for the current "MG" cars that evoke the "Golden Age of Motoring"? :lol: Except we see through such cynical badging exercises, don't we. I don't feel that a new bike with the word "Dawes" on it these days has any connection with the Dawes of old, other than the rights to the name. Ditto MG cars.

Brucey
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Brucey » 18 Oct 2020, 9:19pm

pete75 wrote:Isn't that what is now called a gravel bike?


pretty close, but (like mountain bikes several decades ago) most gravel bikes are sold without mudguards or racks, and with pretty flimsy tyres fitted too. No wonder bike shops love them; lots of accessories to sell at vast mark-up, plus fitting... ker-ching!

The punters like them too because they 'seem lightweight' on the showroom floor. They even weigh them with no pedals ('cause, yeah, you don't need those.... :roll: ). So you get idiots saying 'ooh this or that touring bike is very heavy'... well most bikes which are similarly fully equipped are not lightweight. Fitting puncture resistant tyres, a rack, pedals and mudguards can easily add 2.5 or 3kg to bike weight.

The blurb which accompanies the 2020 Ultra Galaxy even describes it as 'Touring/Adventure' and it is not an unfair description. Ironically if it was less well equipped and fitted with a (trendy but worse) 1x drivetrain, it might have sold quite well and the sticker price could have been made lower too.

cheers
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Bonzo Banana
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Bonzo Banana » 19 Oct 2020, 9:06am

pwa wrote:
Bonzo Banana wrote:
That's not how it works, once you have a classic brand you can market it as having heritage and being around for ages you can make the product seem a safe choice. When the chinese brands couldn't get a foothold in different markets they would buy up brands that they could market on their past innovation and heritage etc even if all they sold with it was a generic product that copies other brands. So you can use an old brand to appeal to new customers you don't have to have known the brand at its peak.

Like the way we are all clamouring for the current "MG" cars that evoke the "Golden Age of Motoring"? :lol: Except we see through such cynical badging exercises, don't we. I don't feel that a new bike with the word "Dawes" on it these days has any connection with the Dawes of old, other than the rights to the name. Ditto MG cars.


I guess it is like that as I think MG is the fastest growing car brand in the UK and they seem to have increased their prices considerably over last years models so something has gone right for them. I'm certainly seeing a lot more of these Chinese MG's about. I don't think any Chinese manufacturer has just grabbed 10% of the market by using an old western brand they still have to build up sales again but the established brand helps with trust.

Most bike brands are importers in Europe and the US. They don't manufacture anything themselves but rely on factories in the far east. I personally don't see that as an issue as long as the factory is good quality and the component choices are good.

It was mentioned earlier that Dawes were coming from Vietnam but many of those factories are owned by high quality Taiwanese companies and they may just be an assembly facility in order to avoid EU tariffs. Some brands are using lower quality factories in Bangladesh or Sri Lanka. There is a pecking order to factories with Taiwan being the best for mass produced bikes and the best factories of mainland China coming second. Cambodia is the biggest exporter of bikes to the EU and Vietnam is about the same quality level. I have a Carrera Subway bought about 10 years ago and that is Vietnam and the frame is good quality. Nowadays Carrera Subways are made in Cambodia or Indonesia (not sure which). It looks like the design has changed for 2020 so maybe they have moved to a different factory again.

Cube do high end ebikes costing thousands that come out of basic quality factories.

https://www.thedailystar.net/business/n ... es-1632277

You'd never know it from their marketing material which would no doubt stress their German engineering but likely not one component was made in Germany and the bike frames have lower weight limits and shorter warranties than many of their competitors who use better factories.

When you buy into a bike brand you buy a lifestyle choice you'd be mad to think you buy a engineering and manufacturing quality level when most brands change factories frequently to get the best price. Some brands used to use Giant as their manufacturer who are probably the best but Giant and manufacturing in Taiwan has become too expensive today so have moved to cheaper factories but many of the reps of those brands still claim their bikes are made by Giant even though they switched years ago. Dawes have probably failed because their marketing b**lsh*t wasn't as competitive and misleading as other brands.

Anyway steel frames can be made well pretty much anywhere it is the aluminium and carbon fibre frames where quality is more critical. I personally wouldn't have a problem with a Dawes Galaxy coming from Bangladesh or Sri Lanka if its steel frames and forks.

rogerzilla
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby rogerzilla » 19 Oct 2020, 9:58am

I also had a Subway made in Vietnam. I assumed they'd be a pretty good bike manufacturing nation, since bikes are still mass transport there (or were at the time).

pete75
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby pete75 » 19 Oct 2020, 10:09am

pwa wrote:
Bonzo Banana wrote:
That's not how it works, once you have a classic brand you can market it as having heritage and being around for ages you can make the product seem a safe choice. When the chinese brands couldn't get a foothold in different markets they would buy up brands that they could market on their past innovation and heritage etc even if all they sold with it was a generic product that copies other brands. So you can use an old brand to appeal to new customers you don't have to have known the brand at its peak.

Like the way we are all clamouring for the current "MG" cars that evoke the "Golden Age of Motoring"? :lol: Except we see through such cynical badging exercises, don't we. I don't feel that a new bike with the word "Dawes" on it these days has any connection with the Dawes of old, other than the rights to the name. Ditto MG cars.

Yep MG an old British brand now used by a Chinese firm ditto for Jaguar now used by an Indian firm.
I saw a pair of similar sized SUVs parked next to each other in a supermarket car park. One had an MG badge, the other a Jaguar badge. Other than the badges they seemed almost identical.

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Mick F
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby Mick F » 19 Oct 2020, 10:21am

pwa wrote:Ditto MG cars.
Not to mention the Mini.

Funny how nobody's resurrected the Allegro name.
Mick F. Cornwall

thelawnet
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Re: Dawes to stop making the Galaxy due to lack of demand...

Postby thelawnet » 19 Oct 2020, 10:39am

Bonzo Banana wrote:
pwa wrote:
Bonzo Banana wrote:
That's not how it works, once you have a classic brand you can market it as having heritage and being around for ages you can make the product seem a safe choice. When the chinese brands couldn't get a foothold in different markets they would buy up brands that they could market on their past innovation and heritage etc even if all they sold with it was a generic product that copies other brands. So you can use an old brand to appeal to new customers you don't have to have known the brand at its peak.

Like the way we are all clamouring for the current "MG" cars that evoke the "Golden Age of Motoring"? :lol: Except we see through such cynical badging exercises, don't we. I don't feel that a new bike with the word "Dawes" on it these days has any connection with the Dawes of old, other than the rights to the name. Ditto MG cars.


I guess it is like that as I think MG is the fastest growing car brand in the UK and they seem to have increased their prices considerably over last years models so something has gone right for them. I'm certainly seeing a lot more of these Chinese MG's about. I don't think any Chinese manufacturer has just grabbed 10% of the market by using an old western brand they still have to build up sales again but the established brand helps with trust.

Most bike brands are importers in Europe and the US. They don't manufacture anything themselves but rely on factories in the far east. I personally don't see that as an issue as long as the factory is good quality and the component choices are good.

It was mentioned earlier that Dawes were coming from Vietnam but many of those factories are owned by high quality Taiwanese companies and they may just be an assembly facility in order to avoid EU tariffs. Some brands are using lower quality factories in Bangladesh or Sri Lanka. There is a pecking order to factories with Taiwan being the best for mass produced bikes and the best factories of mainland China coming second. Cambodia is the biggest exporter of bikes to the EU and Vietnam is about the same quality level. I have a Carrera Subway bought about 10 years ago and that is Vietnam and the frame is good quality. Nowadays Carrera Subways are made in Cambodia or Indonesia (not sure which). It looks like the design has changed for 2020 so maybe they have moved to a different factory again.

Cube do high end ebikes costing thousands that come out of basic quality factories.

https://www.thedailystar.net/business/n ... es-1632277

You'd never know it from their marketing material which would no doubt stress their German engineering but likely not one component was made in Germany and the bike frames have lower weight limits and shorter warranties than many of their competitors who use better factories.

When you buy into a bike brand you buy a lifestyle choice you'd be mad to think you buy a engineering and manufacturing quality level when most brands change factories frequently to get the best price. Some brands used to use Giant as their manufacturer who are probably the best but Giant and manufacturing in Taiwan has become too expensive today so have moved to cheaper factories but many of the reps of those brands still claim their bikes are made by Giant even though they switched years ago. Dawes have probably failed because their marketing b**lsh*t wasn't as competitive and misleading as other brands.

Anyway steel frames can be made well pretty much anywhere it is the aluminium and carbon fibre frames where quality is more critical. I personally wouldn't have a problem with a Dawes Galaxy coming from Bangladesh or Sri Lanka if its steel frames and forks.


I don't think there is much outsourcing of manufacturing from parent companies to smaller ones in Indonesia. The regulatory regime is not that helpful. Although there is Shimano and other companies making components, I don't think you have, say, a Giant sub-factory in Indonesia.

What you do have is Insera Sena, who make bikes for Halfords (Voodoo), Scott, Kona, Evans/Pinnacle, Calibre and others. They also fully own Marin, and Polygon.

They make, as Polygon, all kinds of hybrid/MTBs, the latter of which are as good as any other. Their road range is rather uninspired but possibly that's because of lack of local demand. The MTBs tend to be up to the minute though. Marin have some gravel-type bikes which are good as I understand, but I'm not too familiar. They are priced a bit higher but possibly some of that is spec.

If you want an aluminium MTB frame (they have a carbon one also, I don't know where it comes from), then they are probably as good as any other option, although anecdotally I reckon their mechanics don't use torque wrenches as I find loose bolts and cassettes, and SRAM is trying to blame them for their awful plastic derailleurs breaking; but perhaps that's something a LBS would fix in the UK.

I'm not sure where Surly are made but there seem to have done well by marketing themselves to young men with beards (whereas Dawes are perhaps marketed towards old men with beards). Even if the frames are just some generic steel, they can price themselves highly with marketing stuff about fat wheels and language aimed at hipsters.

One either buys into a particular brand image, or one buys on price - Insera Sena sell into the UK on keenly priced supermarket MTBs, while in Australia & US they have a direct sales Polygon site competing on price.

It doesn't seem that Dawes have too much to offer over the likes of the various brands such as Planet X who sell far Eastern frames with a UK warranty, and they don't have a hipster edge like Surly, or cutting-edge plastic bike technology like Specialized, Trek and others, so they don't seem to have a particular reason to exist - if you want a steel frame then you are a particular buyer given that carbon and alu are ten-a-penny so it's hard to imagine being robbed off easily with any old pig iron when there are competing options on price/image/quality.