You Know You’re the Best When…. Nov 24, 2009

Taiwan rips you off to a ‘t’. Fuck this shit. Some asshole in Taiwan has made bootleg Hold Fast straps. They’re 100% identical. Get some original ideas clowns. Hold Fast isn’t some big company. They’re a small, 2-person operation and you’re taking their idea and mass-producing it. Where they fuck will all the good ideas come from if every time someone creates something, it’s ripped off?

Don’t be mistaken, I’ve stood up for vintage replicas in the past, but these aren’t some foot retention model from the 1970’s, they’re a new system that is the by-product of 1000’s of hours of testing by a grass roots company. The kind of grass-roots company that is taking a huge risk. A lot of hard work went into these and you assholes bought a pair, convinced them to ship them to Taiwan and then copied them exactly.


  • jeff

    one of the reasons this generation is headed for trouble I think. It seems like no one believes in intellectual property anymore. Thanks pirate bay

  • scissorneck

    biting ass mother fuckers im not trying to hate on all asians plus my son is half cambodian “”BUT FUCKING ASIANS””

  • joe dem

    wow, this is getting to be too much. I’m glad mine where hand made in Brooklyn! holdfastordie!

  • man im going to outsource to taiwan now, tell jeremiah im asian, its cool… lol jk jk jk!

  • no one

    they dont care about what you think John Prolly, they care about $$$

  • Damn that sucks man…I’m in the fashion industry. This happens all the time. Sad…Mine say BK all day

  • Did they patent their design? It seems unique enough to apply for one so why not do that, and then when they have millions of dollars they can sue the shit out of people in taiwan..

  • Ku

    I am from Taiwan i ride pist and this bothers me annoyance. They send me a pair and i love. Hold fast or die!

  • lawrence

    there needs to be respect for intellectual property!!!

  • dan p

    take them to court. i assume it was patented. it was patented, right?


  • Craig

    unfortunately what patents and intellectual property rights they have in the US might not and probably don’t transfer to other countries, especially ones as far away physically and governmentally as Taiwan…

    However, I highly doubt anyone who knows anything about the original product would buy a pair if it didn’t have the “HOLD FAST” logo on it.

  • John

    In the same way that I download music and films p2p, and bought Chinese Knog Frog copies rather than the originals, given the option I’m more likely to buy the Taiwanese copies rather than the originals. That’s the world we live in, where intellectual copyright is becoming pretty meaningless, it’s something that I and other Western based “creatives” have got to get used to. But yes, it sucks.

  • br

    The giant Hold Fast logo ruins the original.

  • MAT

    I work at GROVE STREET BICYCLES in jersey city..we are the only shop in NJ to carry HOLD FAST..we support them b/c they are true riders and original people..we will not carry any knock offs of this strap…HOLD FAST+HOLD STRONG!!

  • W.

    For a moment I was excited to see a logoless holdfast… ripoffs aren’t cool, but then again neither is a giant nautical star on an otherwise clean looking bike.

  • The logo (nautical star) is so tiny now. “Clean bikes” or not, it’s a their logo. Their brand. Their identity. If it bothers you, you can always pop the stitches and take it off.

    Also, the Hurricane stars (nautical stars) are all over Red Hook, where they are made. In the early 20th century, a massive hurricane hit the coast of NYC, causing a lot of the pre-war low-rise building’s facades to pull away from the structure. They added threaded rods and end caps (stars) to hold the facades onto the floor structures. This became the procedure for years to come and now “new urbanism” everywhere uses these stars as a form of decoration.

    Once again the vernacular becomes ornament.

    Keep the logo. It’s part of the brand identity.

    It also goes hand in hand with the brand name, Hold Fast is a sailor’s term.

  • aj

    its taiwan john, all they can do replicate stuff, they’ve been doing it for years…just as elliot

  • e90

    by putting them on this ever so popular blog….you just helped them sell even more.

    if it does the job, then it does the job…if they make money off of it then that’s all they care about. its very easy to replicate some belt straps, velcro, and loops.

  • ben

    FUCK THAT SHIT!!!! HOLD*FAST or DIE!! they’re probably way cheaply put together anyway.


  • Matthew Ng

    its 2009
    this is bound to happen.
    if holdfast is a good reputable company, they will have loyal customers and followers. if the taiwan knock offs are at par with the build quality… errrrr they have a problem there. its a risk throwing your time and money into a new product these days due to the fact that people over seas will eventually take the idea and totally kick your ass with it.

    i feel bad for the 2 creators, holdfast was definitely an amazing idea

    but i cant feel bad to the asians neither.. they are just doing what they need to do … “hustlin” :P

  • lawrence

    @ matthew ng
    i totally disagree with you. i dont think they need to be “hustlin” there are plenty other ways to make money in asia than ripping off someone’s frs.

    by accepting this culture of copying, there wouldnt be any motivation to innovate cuase your shit will just get copied! this pessimistic acceptance is fucking sad. the region will remain always a fabricator rather than designer, never bringing anything new to the table.

  • Andrew

    Like everyone else said, this happens every day. If you think it sucks that a few guys playing with seatbelts and velcro got ripped off by Asia, just think how a multi-billion dollar U.S. manufacturer (Caterpillar comes to mind) that employs thousands of Americans feels when one of their designs that cost billions in engineering and R&D gets ripped off by Asia.

    Taiwan, China, Singapore, Malaysia are all members of the World Trade Organization. The only way we can stop this from happening on a large scale is to place trade sanctions on them to give them incentive to start recognizing our intellectual property laws. This won’t happen any time soon as we continue to print money to fund our government’s insane spending and aforementioned countries continue to purchase our treasury bills. It’ll only get worse if universal healthcare and a stricter cap&trade passes.

    Think about it.

  • don’t want to talk this right but, this shit happens every time doesn’t it. people without conscious.

  • rand0m

    Not surprised one bit. Anything that is worthy will be cloned. However, it is usually inferior in some way to cut costs. If it’s on par like Matthew mentioned, then that may be a problem. Even so, people will buy into branding more often than not. Plus, I wouldn’t want something inferior as my foot retention (especially with no brakes).

    BTW, lumping “asians” together is not cool. I’d put money on it that someone stateside sent a sample to taiwan in the first place.

  • Wil

    Where’d you see these John?

  • I think Prolly did a good job of bringing it to everyone’s attention. Now it is everyone’s responsibility or choice to say fuck tiawan or fuck quality.

  • Hieu

    Ok scissorneck, yeah you can lick my Asian balls now. I’ve been thinking of buying a pair of Hold Fast & prob will buy one because it’s the original & made in America. There’s nothing I hate more than unoriginal biters, but what I hate more than them are ignorant fools like you. Here’s a revelation, stop eating pasta cause it wasn’t invented in Italy, the Italians stole it the Chinese. Sadly that’s how the world works. People have always and will continue to steal somebody else’s great ideas because it benefit them. So next time you you’re stuffing your face with a big fat plate of pasta do me a favor and stuff it up your ass, since that seems to be where your mouth is.

  • Wil, flickr, trick track and numerous fixed gear blogs in asia.

  • from the pictures you can tell the detail just isn’t there, they won’t be the same at all.

  • Frenchy

    I agree, you can tell the cutting and sewing is terrible.
    These are what they are: cheap azz knockoff’s!
    Having said that, Hold Fast need to get their act together,
    I’ve heard stories of people waiting on orders for weeks,
    the dope colorways are always sold out on their site,
    and it seems no LBS outside the US can get a pair !!
    I know they are a two man operation, but perhaps they need to hire before the bootleggers catch up !!

  • mangler

    But where to cop?

  • I’ll be doing a write-up soon of all the companies that rip off ideas (in the bike scene) here in China . . Expect it in another 3 weeks – the research is taking some time, and I’m actually visiting the factories.

    John’s right – it’s getting out of control.

  • andy caPP

    just got a pair of hold fast and they’re the shit. fuck the biters, the fake shit wont hold up to the torture REAL riders put on their shit. how many miles a week do we put on our bikes. real cats will buy the real shit, so fuck the nonsense.

  • joe g

    has anyone ever seen power-straps? They aren’t exactly the same as what you’ve created, but its not far off. Maybe you could find the designer of the powerstrap and ask for comments about your product. Maybe he (or she) thinks you ripped off your idea.
    On issues like this: you need to offer value to the consumer, not “creativity”. Aesthetics, usability, durability are the things that a product is judged by, not who came up with it first.

    Don’t go blaming someone for making it cheaper than you, thats called competition.

  • joe schmoe

    joe, you’ve been under a rock or don’t frequent this blog. theyre nothing like powergrips. hold fasts are more durable, adjustable and whole new idea.

    prolly and the hold fast team have been developing this product for months. they have addressed usability aesthetics and durability and hold fasts are the best system ive used.

    i bought all the others and these straps the hold fasts are the best

    making it cheaper isnt competition, not in this instance. copying the exact product in a shitty tawian factory isnt competition, its copyrite infringment.

    do you think bobo shoes are competing with the OGs? no. theyre saturating the market with shitty knock offs that send out the wrong message. over abundance of shitty straps that look like the real thing hurt the real things rep too.

    think about shit before you type it bro.

  • jerry


    two posts down from this one, you rep a I minus Daughter sponsored event. Your realized I-D ripped off H Plus Son, right? Well, then how come you dont give I-D any shit?

  • It’s different. Giant was making H+Son style rims before H+Son was – from Taiwanese blanks – then Taiwanese companies produced blank rims and allowed companies to re-brand them. These rims that Giant was making were FROM Taiwan to begin with. iMINUSD simply rebrands Taiwanese blanks, just like Leader, All-City, Origin 8, Dimension, Carnival, Starfuckers, Wellgo, QBP, J&B and numerous other companies / distros. It’s a common practice amoungst brands now-adays.


    The Andel cranks are a great example. Andel makes blank cranks and agents like the above-mentioned brands can BUY these blank cranks and put their name on it. Andel SOLD their design to allow this to happen.

    Hold Fast didn’t SELL their design. It was ripped off. To a “t” and made cheaper because the materials and craft is cheaper. Same shit happened with the Bruiser and those TWATS at Airwalk Fixed Gear. STEALING a design is NOT the same as purchasing a blank and royalty-free items.

  • Tree Sprocket Lover

    Its not just the Asians copy things, the Americans are no better.

    Just look at the new Profile Spline Drive sprocket a direct copy of Tree’s spline drive system. Sam from Tree Bicycles have confirmed Profile Racing simply stole his design.

  • we are fixed gear girl Taiwan,
    is we put this pic on our blog.

    we r turely sorry to cause this problem and there is
    some misunderstanding…..

    we know that guy,
    the straps he made is just for himslef,not for sale.

    and he is not intension to show this pics
    so he didn’t know we put his pitcure on our blog!

    It’s really sad to c this and we are turly sorry again!

    we love all peple of the world

  • Radicalrye

    This is really interesting that this came up when it did. In my macro econ. class we’ve been talking a lot about how manufacturing in Asia and outsourcing is ruining things for a lot of companies. My instructor is from Thailand and even he said he refuses to buy products from China and other countries in Asia because of their business practices and lack of regulations.

    He also said that a factory in China was making bootlegged CONDOMS! The factory workers were working shirtless and using petroleum jelly to lubricate these condoms! If that isn’t the sickest thing I’ve ever heard, I don’t know what is.

    I really think we need to start protesting and stop buying cheaply made goods from Asia. It’s one thing if a product is developed, etc. in those countries, but to just go around ripping off designs is complete bullshit.

    I’m so sick of seeing knock off handbags, sunglasses, bootlegged movies, and now bike products being stolen from the people who work their asses off to design and create these products. I don’t care where you patent your product it should be honored internationally as intellectual property.

    Hold Fast makes a great product and I truly think that the rip offs look like shit and don’t stand up to the real product.

  • Chek

    Everybody on this blog sounds like a fuck’n crybaby. Yeah it was ripped off, but what in the world isn’t ripped off nowadays?
    I’m from SF but have been living in Taiwan for a few years now.
    People who want cheaper shit without the wait will buy the knockoffs. People who know and care will buy the originals.
    Real recognize real.

    Seriously, if you that mad….find the motherfucker and sue the shit out of him.

    You can’t be mad at a motherfucker for hustling and getting money.

  • chek’s don

    chek I knew you in SF you were a bitch ass motherfucker there and ur still one. get a new hobbie like motorcycles already you brand is poser ass fake ass mother fuckers.

    real recognize fake bitches. your crew is weak and yours a poser fuck.

  • Enough is enough.

    People. Chill. I get home from a nice night drinking with friends and approving comments from my iPhone to find this? Seriously?

    Chill out!

    FGGT, We LOVE your site. WE LOVE what you are doing for girls and fixed gears. Don’t be mad at this site (or the comments). I think the FGGT site is a much-needed rep for women in this scene everywhere.

    If you haven’t seen their site, check it here:

    Anyway, comments are closed. Take your rantings elesewhere. Bottom line is this:

    Come up with your own ideas. This is a GRASS-ROOTS community. Separate from BMX. Keep it morally and ethically pure. Support the smaller guys. You’re going to see a lot of this in the future. Reward the companies that have addressed your needs and continue to support them.

    Thanks for the comments, but I’m closing it down!