- Cotic Rocket to be UK made…
Well done Cy..
The time has come! I can finally reveal why we had to go all quiet on the Rocket for these last few months: Today we are announcing the from now on all Cotic full suspension frame production is happening in the UK, built at a new production facility I have co-founded. This factory is Bicycle Manufacturing Limited, or BML for short. Does what it says on the tin!
About 2 years ago I met Mike McDermid, who is my partner in BML and the manufacturing brains of the operation. We began working on this project after it became clear to Mike that using the latest automated techniques and equipment combined with high skilled hand made production, it would be possible to be competitive on price with Far Eastern supply on high end products with a flexible, high quality UK operation. Mike’s experience with all areas of manufacturing are extensive, right up to designing carbon composites for F1 and Le Mans cars, (Williams F1, Wirth Research, Red Bull Racing) as well as some of the top names in the Aerospace and bike industry.
As you know, Cotic – like just about every bike brand in the world – sources frames and parts from the Far East. Some of the reason for this is price, but in most cases it’s also to do with expertise. The Taiwanese and Chinese have factories and companies that just build bikes. Not aircraft, or car parts, or motorcycle frames as well, just bikes. They have expertise and make it very easy to source parts. They’re very good at what they do. When we figured out that, if done carefully and correctly, we could be competitive on price for mid-to-high end products using the processes Mike had in mind, we were suddenly in a situation where the price was good and cutting edge manufacturing and material expertise was in the UK. So, all things being equal, I decided I would prefer to make some models in the UK. The pricing is similar, but the flexibility of production and the speed of development for new product tips the balance in BML’s favour.
I realise that quite a few of you have been waiting a long time for Rockets, and we have been fairly evasive on the subject up to now. I can only apologise for that. I really hope you understand that whilst we were completely committed to success with BML all last year, until we got to this point – having pre-production frames in build – we couldn’t be sure when we would be ready. We didn’t want to put more pressure on the build up of the factory by putting some arbitrary production date on it. For those of you who have been patient with us; thank you so much. For those that decided to buy something else; I totally understand and would probably have done the same in your shoes!
We’re very close to completing the first pre-production UK made Rocket frames, so look out for more on this in a couple of weeks. And before you ask, they are 26″ wheel!! Once they’ve been finished there will be a brief lab testing and sign off period to dot i’s and cross t’s on the UK construction methods and we’re aiming to be in build in early March.
If you want to see the full press release and some pictures of our production kit, head over to the Bicycle Manufacturing webpage to have a look.
I’m so excited about this project; the possibilities, the potential for new and interesting products, learning to weld myself! So much to look forward to. Welcome to our latest adventure!
CyPosted 6 years agoDracSubscriberRikSubscriber
As rockets have been out of stock for over a year and people have been waiting longer than this for a frame. They still have to wait till March maybe . Not the best business sense in my opinion.
Would have made far more sense to have ordered a last batch of Rockets from Tiawan.
Now all you’ve done is created a marketing storm 18 months ago about a new frame that got good reviews in the press and not had any to sell to anybody who actually wanted one for 12 months so they’ve bought something else.Posted 6 years agocySubscriber
If we’d have known quite how long it would have taken to get to this point I would have ordered another batch of Rockets from Taiwan. All of this is the benefit of hindsight, and we thought we’d be in production last summer. Things like finding that none of the off the shelf frame jigs did what we needed meant spending a lot more time and effort doing things we didn’t think we’d need to do. It’s not been ideal from the Rocket perspective, but once this project was underway it was so much more important to see it through. The other issue being that lead time from Taiwan is 6 months minimum, so even if we’d hit the button on that in June they’d only just be arriving now, just as we’re about to be able to make them here.
Thanks for all the kind words. I’m so excited, and still shaking a bit having finally been able to tell people!Posted 6 years agochiefgrooveguruMember
Awesome work! And the joy of having your own local manufacturing is you can do rapid prototyping and small production runs so you can get great products to market in short times without having big risk – which is especially relevant in this confusing world of multiple wheel sizes.
We had a similar thing happen when we brought our manufacturing in-house – thought it would be much quicker to set up than it actually was but by the time that became clear it was too late to get another batch made by our previous contractors. Hindsight is a wonderful thing…Posted 6 years agoShackletonSubscriber
I really hope this works out for them. I’m another person who wanted to buy a rocket but couldn’t due to stocking. I waited, and waited and now 650b is here, and looks here to stay, whether we want it or not. Given how aggressively it is being pushed I still suspect that fork/rim/tyre manufacturers will put 26″ further down the priority list for anything other than DH as time goes on.
I don’t want to get caught out by this so I was rather disappointed that the rocket won’t be getting a 650b makeover. I keep frames for quite a while (my heckler is 10 this year) so buying something that is perceived as obsolete by the rest of the industry seems not to be the best idea going. I’m no supporter of 650b but for someone in the market for a new frame and forks it seems the only sensible way to go in the current climate.
Given that they are prototyping and the changes needed for 650b are fairly minor why not just make the change? I know it would involve swallowing their pride over the “26 ain’t dead” thing but it seems to make better business sense at the moment and for the future.
Shame really, the rocket I tried is a great bike.Posted 6 years agojambalayaMember
@shakelton how is 650b any different from 29 from a marketing hype perspective, how is it more likely to stay ? To me it sounds just the same as we heard about 29. If you keep bikes 10 years then it’s clear you don’t care about hype/having the latest thing for the sake of it – so just buy what you wantPosted 6 years ago
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