This derailleur is a Chinese copy of an Ingrid RD1. Some of its features are:
- It's a copy of a recent model (2023?) - with the groovy hollow tension pulley.
- The colours look just slightly wrong - the green particularly disturbs me.
- The CNC metal parts are quite nicely finished and look kind-of correct. You have to look in the less obvious corners to see a difference.
- The small bolts etc. are decent quality and look correct-ish.
- The plastic parts are noticeably poorly finished compared to the real thing. They look cheap and nasty. It's interesting that 3D printed plastic is harder to fake than CNCd metal.
- There is a strange clear plastic 'bubble' over the logo on the outer parallelogram plate. I have not seen this on an original version.
- At 286g it seems about 10g heavier than the real thing
- It feels like it would work OK, the pulleys turn reasonably smoothly and the parallelogram feels tight.
- It comes in a box that is nearly convincing and is clearly, but erroneously, labelled 'Made in Italy'.
- It costs somewhere between one fifth and one tenth of the price of the original.
But it sends a whole herd of questions stampeding through my mind:
- In an age of affordable laser scanners, inexpensive CNC machines and cheap 3D printers, a design is such a fragile thing - mere data that is minutes away from capture. How will small manufacturers survive in this world without meaningful barriers to entry?
- What is the point of a copy of a luxury product? Surely you buy an Ingrid derailleur precisely in order to enjoy an exclusive, artisanal product of exquisite quality. How does owning a fake version deliver any of that?
- Is there really much virtue in trying to con your friends into thinking that you're an afficionado by parading around with a bike fitted with a fake derailleur?
- Is a cheap copy of an Ingrid RD1 a viable competitor to comparably priced Shimano and SRAM models? Is the fake RD1 better or worse than a Shimano SLX?
- Should a site like this be showing this derailleur at all or should fakes be denied all and any oxygen? I should note that I only originally became aware of this derailleur when Ingrid themselves posted a warning about fakes on their web site.
At first I was fascinated to see this derailleur, but I soon tired of it. If I was an oligarch I would want the real thing. If I wanted to fool my friends I would need help with my mental health. And if I wanted the best derailleur for the price I would probably go for that Shimano SLX. A faked derailleur can only be a passing fad - an irrelevant gimmick.
An acquaintance suggested that it might be interesting to try to build up a bike entirely using counterfeit parts. And this might be the one situation in which this fake Ingrid derailleur had found its rightful place - as a lurid, gaudy, bauble hung on a Christmas tree of madness.
- Derailleur brands: Someone in China imitating Ingrid
- Themes: A riot of colour
- Country: China pretending to be Italy
- Date of introduction: 2023?
- Date of this example: unknown
- Model no.: R11SH S
- Weight: 286g
- Maximum cog: 52 teeth
- Total capacity: 42 teeth
- Pulley centre to centre: 88mm
- Index compatibility: 11-speed Shimano
- Chain width: 3/32”
- Logic: top normal
- B pivot: unsprung
- P pivot: sprung
- Materials: CNC machined 7075 aluminium parallelogram, 3D printed PA12 composite pulley cage and cable guide fin