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thumbs up for Huffy(38 posts)

thumbs up for Huffyelviento
Nov 12, 2003 7:47 AM
OK, people refer to COlnago as the "expensive" bike, "poser" bike, "fancy/flashy" bike, etc. But the same thing could also be said of Pinarellos, DeRosas, and several other brands.

Yet on the other end of the spectrum, no one beats Huffy. I mean, no one. Fuji doesn't even come close.

And Huffy has been around so long. Gotta give'em credit!

--Just a random thought
re: thumbs up for Huffyrussw19
Nov 12, 2003 7:54 AM
Colnago, Pinarello, and Derosa have all been around just as long. And they have been making the best of the best of bikes for that long too.

Huffy started as kids bike maker in the late 40s, 1949 I think.

Colnago and Derosa were about 5 years later.

More random thoughts....

Russ
re: smoke and mirrorsFredrico
Nov 12, 2003 8:15 AM
That's right. And those Italian bike builders are legends in their time, unlike Huffy, which remains a faceless pariah in the industry, another example of American corporate cynicism and greed. Do any of those Huffy hotshots really believe in their products? How can they sleep at night, knowing what crap they're churning out?
They supply a market,TJeanloz
Nov 12, 2003 8:47 AM
Let's face it, your average 8 year old doesn't need a Colnago with full Record. And your average parent doesn't want to (and can't) spend >$100 on a bike. Huffy, Pacific, et. al. make a product to serve a market.

Their product isn't great, and they don't claim that it is, but it does the job it is intended to.
their market..Fredrico
Nov 12, 2003 2:57 PM
8 year olds don't need 21 gears or a front shock, either. Back in simpler times, kids' bikes lasted so well, they got passed along in families through several owners.

There's something perverse about designing, manufacturing and marketing a machine that doesn't work that well, fails within a few months, and is hard, if not impossible to fix.

The kids I know prize Diamond Back BMX bikes, and scorn Huffies with all those gimcracks on them. Kids know when they're being manipulated. It's probably mostly the parents who get suckered into buying Huffies, but they don't have to ride them!
their market..russw19
Nov 12, 2003 7:40 PM
The funny thing is that kids will play with whatever you give them. If you have kids, you know that. Sure as a kid I would have rather played with GI Joes all day, but if I had a bucket full of plastic Green Army Men and no GI Joes, I would still entertain myself.

I am a big fan of good bikes. I hate Huffies and all the other bikes in that market niche. I see them at the shop and they suck. They are disposable bikes. But the other side to that coin is that kids grow and kids don't care. Kids have no sense of value or monetary worth. You can't give an average kid (sure, there are non-average exceptions) a $1000 bike and not expect them to still throw it down on the lawn or jump it off curbs or ghost ride it down the street. 8 years old is still too young for most children to understand value. Until they understand value, it is pointless to give them anything of value when a cheaper substitute would be equally gratifying for the kid and acceptable to them as well.

Add to that that children of 8 years of age outgrow bikes before they destroy them (good bikes, not disposable ones) and you can see why parents buy them a Huffy. A Huffy bike is really not a bike, but a toy. There is a difference, and until the child develops the mentality to differentiate that then there is no use in buying them anything buy a toy.

Once I developed a sense of value as well as a sense of space, I appreciated a real bike. Once I got to the age that my bike set me free from the normal spacial constraints of my neighborhood and walking distance to playing facilities, then I grew more appreciative of the freedom that my well maintained bike gave to me. I also started to develop the concept of value based upon that freedom to leave my neighborhood on my bike and travel to other places. It was at that point in my life (about 11 or 12 for me) that I began to understand the concept of value and began to take care of my possessions, which were now more than mere toys to me.

Huffy's have their place in the world... the toy world. And I wouldn't knock any parent for buying one for a kid if that kid still views a bike as a toy. But once a kid starts to see a bike as more than a mere toy a Huffy will no longer do. Well, not for my kid at least.

Russ
Huffy's been around for a long time...george_da_trog
Nov 12, 2003 9:11 AM
I've even seen pictures of Bob Roll riding a Huffy in Paris Roubaix.

Huffy History

george
No you didn't. You saw Bobke on a Serotta with Huffy stickersrussw19
Nov 12, 2003 11:35 AM
No you didn't. You saw Bobke on a Serotta with Huffy stickersgeorge_da_trog
Nov 12, 2003 3:09 PM
yeah, I know.

The Giant factory also makes many of the bikes labled something else.... does that make them giants, or something else?

Huffy was at least good enough to sponsor the team and got them some good bikes to ride.

george
he he herussw19
Nov 12, 2003 7:22 PM
So by that logic, all I need to do is put my name on a Colnago and I would be making the best bikes in the world too! Oh wait, better yet, I am gonna stick my nameplate badge on a Ferrari and be the greatest auto builder on the planet.

If I sign my name over top of Piccasso's on a painting, who really made the masterpiece? If I stole your phD disertation and made it my own, who really gets the credit?

Is it the craftsman who pours his heart and soul into his (her) art? Is it the person who sweats in the shop for love of creation, or the person who signs their name to the completed product?

The funny thing here is that you have two totally unrelated points that you are argueing trying to make yours. The above covers the whole Huffys that were built by Serotta but decaled as Huffy. It's who builds the bike that matters, not whose sticker is on it. Otherwise, why not go down to your local Wal-Mart and slap a Derosa sticker on a Mongoose and see how much that increases the bike's worth. The second thing you try to bring up, about Giant, is a totally unrelated issue, and one you don't understand either. Giant is not actually building the bikes then slapping other decals on the bike to call it something else.

Giant doesn't build the actual bike. The truth of that situation is more like if I rent studio time from a studio owned by George Lucas, can I call my film his? Giant doesn't "make" bikes for other companies. Their parent company happens to own a state of the art facility in China that contracts out their equippment and manufacturing facility for other companies, who in turn build their own bikes to their own specs and tolerances with their own choice of materials and their own employees, but they do so under a roof and on a parcel of land owned by Giant Bike's parent company.

You are just propagating one of the biggest lies in cycling today with that line of thinking. Giant makes bikes for Giant and Giant alone. Go ask them. Their parent company's contract agreement with the others that use their facilities prohibits them from lying to consumers and saying that "Giant makes anyone else's bikes."

Just an FYI.

Russ
Nope. Huffy started in 1899 making racers.......firstrax
Nov 13, 2003 9:29 PM
The 1904 Dayton Racer
well they do have competitionColnagoFE
Nov 12, 2003 7:56 AM
You have Magna, Pacific, Royce Union...the list goes on.
But I know none of these brandselviento
Nov 12, 2003 8:16 AM
and these could go bust any mimute I suppose. I am amazed that Huffy maintains well known as the flagship "cheap" bike for so long.

I mean when you need a brand to signify the generic expensive/exotic/fancy bike, you can use Colnago/Pirarello/DeRosa, just like Lexus/Mercedes/BMW when talking about luxury cars. But when you want to use a brand name to represent a generic low end bike, Royce Union just doesn't do the job.
Walk into any Walmart or TargetColnagoFE
Nov 12, 2003 8:49 AM
You might even see some Schwinns there alongside the Magnas and Royce Unions...some rebadged to a house brand. They are more common than you think.
Or any school bike rack.... nmDave Hickey
Nov 12, 2003 9:01 AM
re: But I know none of these brandsstephenb
Nov 12, 2003 9:28 AM
In 1959 I was 8 yrs old and for Xmas I received a beautiful Royce Union 3 speed British Touring bike. British Green with lovely gold pin-striping. While it pales in comparison to my Merlin some forty years later, I still remember it as a nice bike.
I can't say that I ever knew of Huffy back then. It was Schwinn and then everything else.
And didn't we all start with a Huffy????PaulCL
Nov 12, 2003 7:59 AM
Or something just like it?? In fact, I have two Huffy's, one Kent, one Schwin in my garage now. OK, I also have a Giant MTB and a GT MTB in the same garage. OK, an Aegis and Tsunami in the basement. So...I've grown up...but my kids still ride Huffy's, beat'em to death, have fun on them, pass them on to the next kid in line or a younger neighbor who then does the same. They may not be top end, but they do a great job for a great price.
Wasn't the '86 TdF won on a Huffy?ElvisMerckx
Nov 12, 2003 8:03 AM
Seriously. LeMond rode a rebadged Look.

And didn't 7-11 ride Huffy's (rebadged Serottas) in the mid-80s?
Lemond: Still rode della Santa in`86(methinks)...Spunout
Nov 12, 2003 8:15 AM
Serotta built the bikes for 7-11. Also the neutral support roadbikes for the LA games were badged Huffy too.
Nope, it was a rebadged Look!!ElvisMerckx
Nov 12, 2003 8:30 AM
I'm at work so I don't have access to my old copies of Winning, but this site confirms my memory isn't fading:

http://www.cycledisciple.com/Asks/asktourbikes.htm
Yabutt, Indurain's Pinarello was Pegoretti, Gitane was Cyfac.....Spunout
Nov 12, 2003 8:54 AM
Lemond won on a bike that said Look on it, right? I had all of those Winning Mags also. Can't remember.
Some said Look, some said Huffy, some said both.ElvisMerckx
Nov 12, 2003 9:06 AM
Some of the white bikes with the Mondrian paint scheme said Look (most said Huffy -- spares?). I remember his silver climbing bikes said Huffy on the fork and downtube, Look on the headbadge.

Not that any of this matters. He was riding a Look -- which was probably made by Alan.
This is right up my alley...Dave Hickey
Nov 12, 2003 9:21 AM
The 86 White Mondrian LOOK was a limited edition LOOK Reynolds 753 frame. They only made 500 and the frame was made for LOOK by Scapin. Both Hinault and Lemond used this frame in SOME of the 86 stages. The climbing bikes were the silver Huffy branded LOOKs....They were made by LOOK using TVT BB shells and dropouts.

Trust me on this one....
Thanks, Dave! Any facts on the Huffy badges? nmElvisMerckx
Nov 12, 2003 9:31 AM
LOOK questionorange_julius
Nov 12, 2003 10:44 AM
Dave, is this when LOOK just started or was about
to start making frames? When did they start racing
LOOK carbon frames? Thanks in advance.

By the way, you should be the official LOOK historian
on RBR :-). Are you interested in writing out some
interesting pieces of history?
LOOK answerDave Hickey
Nov 12, 2003 11:01 AM
They started making frames around 1985. There was a relationship with LOOK and TVT in the mid-80's and if you look at both frames, tehy are identical. I have a 1987 KG86 that has TVT stamped dropouts and BB shell but my 1990 has KG76 has LOOK dropouts and BB shell even though they look exactly the same. They started racing in the mid 80's with La Vie Claire being the primary team.

As for being a historian, there are many people that have a lot more LOOK knowledge than me. I just have a passion for their frames and research LOOK's history on the web, books, catalogs and magazines.
Pictures of both?orange_julius
Nov 12, 2003 9:41 AM
If you go to grahamwatson.com's Dublin exhibit, you can
clearly see that the 1986 TdF bike was a LOOK. I seem
to recall a picture of him riding a Huffy-badged bike,
but this could be during the Coors Classic when he
rode for another team.
That's the LOOK Reynolds 753 frame.Dave Hickey
Nov 12, 2003 9:52 AM
I have a picture at home of the LOOK/Huffy. I'll scan it tonight.

By the way, I will pay top dollar or a finders fee to anyone that has a 50-54cm LOOK Reynolds 753 frame for sale
The bike in the GW photo is a spare!ElvisMerckx
Nov 12, 2003 11:31 AM
LeMond started that ITT on a funny-bike (24" front wheel, sloping toptube, bullhorn bars), but he wiped out in a tight corner. [Note the road grime on his arm and jersey.] He hopped back on the bike, but after a few pedal strokes he realized he needed a bike change.

He ended up finishing 2nd to Hinault that day, but he'd won the TdF.
Huffy's always suckedDropped
Nov 12, 2003 8:24 AM
As a kid growing up in the 70s, the general opinion back then was that even for low-end department store bikes, Huffy sucked. They were built for crap. Ross was a much better bike. Hell, anything was better than a Huffy.

(BTW, Airborne's were Huffy's until the company was sold recently)
When I was 15, I went for a 210 mile three day trip on my HuffyDave Hickey
Nov 12, 2003 8:50 AM
In the mid 70's, a friend and I went on a three day trip totaling 210 miles. We slept in farmers fields each night.

My Huffy managed to get through the trip just fine thank you.

FYI, the reason I had a Huffy was my father was a transportation consultant that did work for Huffy.
However painful, I must agree with a thumbs up for Huffy.ElvisMerckx
Nov 12, 2003 8:55 AM
Over the years they've sponsored Greg LeMond, the US Olympic cycling team, Ironman Champ Mark Allen, and the 7-Eleven pro cycling team.

I can't badmouth the company, but their bikes are a different matter.
Thumbs up for any companyT-Doc
Nov 12, 2003 9:20 AM
that makes human powered transportation - low rent or penthouse.
Can you turn a Huffy into a real race bike?bimini
Nov 12, 2003 10:12 AM
I've thought about doing this. Going out and buying a cheap new or used Huffy Road Bike that fits okay (Does Huffy make road bikes anymore?) Then put on Campy Veloce 9 speed Shifters and front / rear derailuers. Then a nice set of wheels made of OP rims and Veloce or Mirage hubs and cassette. (I would need to peel the Mavic labels off the Rims and put some grease and dirt on the campy gear to hide them). Top it off with a set of beat up look pedals and an SRAM chain and I think you would have an reasonable race machine.

Then go out to the races and drop a few Colnogo's, De Rosa's and don't forget a couple of dozens Treks. I think it would be a hoot.

Just imagine being passed and dropped by an old fart on a Huffy when your riding a 16k Dogma Ego. I think my Ego would be Dog Meat.

Cycling is 90-95% legs and 5-10% bike. We all focus on the bike way too much.

The last race I was in there was a young guy on an old Varsity 10 speed with rat trap pedals and straps. He did okay and I was rooting for him (but I did not wait for him). I think he did finish ahead of several Treks, etc.
Unfortunately, no,TJeanloz
Nov 12, 2003 12:50 PM
That was one of my dreams after I finished racing "seriously" - to enter a Cat 3 or 4 race on a rebuilt Huffy frame, and at least hang with the field.

The catch, and there's always a catch, is that nothing on a Huffy is a normal size. The bottom bracket is usually built for a one-peice crank, and is an oddball size that can't be changed out. Bosses are the wrong size to hold cable stops, tubes are the wrong diameter for derailluers. Basically, it couldn't be done without some serious metalworking - and that's IF you could find one with 700C wheels, which was a challange in and of itself.
Take a look (mtb content)Chicago_Steve
Nov 12, 2003 1:57 PM
Terminaut is a regular over on MTBr and has a pretty interesting Huffy that he's ridden on some pretty technical terrain...



Of special interest is the King HS!
Another optionFez
Nov 12, 2003 1:22 PM
That's a LOT of work to find an old Huffy frame and then build it with a lot of decent parts.

And like TJ said, it probably cannot be done due to lack of compatibility.

Another option would be to paint or powdercoat an old frame, build it up with the same parts you listed, and top it off with whatever decals you want. Huffy, Schwinn, Free Spirit, whatever.
My wife has a....Matno
Nov 12, 2003 10:48 AM
sticker on her bike that says "If Huffy made an airplane, would you fly in it?"

My favorite sticker of all time!

PS
Let's not forget about Mongoose, who also makes plenty of tank-like, poorly constructed bikes (although they actually do make some "decent" bikes).