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Folding bikes - Brompton, Dahon, Mezzo etc - recommendations and chat

Discussion in 'transport' started by editor, May 18, 2005.

  1. Chip Barm

    Chip Barm bizarre wanking accident

    Folding bikes - Brompton, Dahon, Strida etc

    I was out today at a mates shop when a fella turned up on one of these:

    [​IMG]

    Are these big in London?

    I'm not mad for the look of them but thought it was a pretty good design, nicely built, folding mechanism, folding pedals and whatever all looked good and it was light enough. Didn't ask for a ride, fella was getting nervous when I asked to pick it up.
     
  2. weepiper

    weepiper eb slootly non verbal

    never seen one before but can I just say a) UGH :eek::( and b) it must be like riding a clown bike, how does one avoid wobbling furiously round corners when the bars are that close to the seat?
     
  3. Chip Barm

    Chip Barm bizarre wanking accident

    I'm not sure, fella said he'd ridden it about 3 miles into town.

    The picture is the same as the same as the one he had, £525:eek:
     
  4. Endeavour

    Endeavour -- --- .-. ... .

    They've brought out a model specifically for clowns it seems ... :eek:
    [​IMG]
    :D
     
  5. Ich bin ein Mod

    Ich bin ein Mod does his make up in his room

    U.G.L.Y. it aint got no alibi ...

    [/daphne and celeste]
     
  6. cybertect

    cybertect Now up West

    Very fast fold - sub-7 seconds and a dry (clean) drive chain. That's the USP.



    Though if fold speed is your thing, the Tikit is possibly a better bet



    The Strida is lighter, though (9.6 kg vs 11 kg).

    With folding bikes, everything is a compromise.
     
  7. Smangus

    Smangus comatose at a desk

    Folding bikes?

    Hi urbs I need your help/ opinionz …

    Want to start cycling to work again as I have a new job in town, trouble is the office has no storage so I am seriously considering buying a folding bike. Usually I ride a touring road bike so I wonder if you can gives me any recommendations on folders, do’s/don’ts experiences etc. The commute will be about 10 miles each way and I have a lot of cycling experience so I am not worried about that mainly the difference in ride and comfort etc from a normal sized bike.

    Also if you can recommend any bikes that would be useful, I have had a look at the usual suspects , Bromptons, Dahons etc. Am leaning towards a Dawes Ace at the mo but other suggestions welcome.

    Or should I give up on the idea chain my old bike outside the office so it gets nicked and claim on the insurance…?

    Ta v much
    smangus
     
  8. Spark

    Spark Well-Known Member

    Personally i'd just get some decent locks and keep going on your current bike. Although bike theft is high loads of bikes also get locked up safely and aren't stolen. Get some insurance and leave your bike outside with 2 good locks on. Also, I get the feeling that tourers aren't the most popular bikes to steal, but make great commuters (imho).
     
  9. cybertect

    cybertect Now up West

    I have absolutely no regrets about buying a Brompton (M6R) but that is for a bike-train-bike commute, at which it excels (compact and quick fold).

    It's a fun ride, good visibility. Their front-mounted 'C' bag is a brilliant luggage solution. Fits neatly under my desk at work and I've not carried a bike lock since. :)

    However, I'm a little unsure about using it for a longer journey on a regular basis (about 13 miles in my case).

    I'm used to drop bars and the prospect of sitting in one position all that time doesn't fill me with joy. You watch for pot holes a little more than you do with a larger-wheeled bike. You can't reasonably use toe clips with one because of the fold. All-in, it definitely is a bit slower (though I'm still faster on the Brompton than some other people on 'proper' bicycles).

    I have been toying with the idea of knocking out the middle train section of my commute for the summer and whether to use the Brommie or one of my other bikes, which would then mean I'd have to leave it in a basement car park. Relatively safe, but still not where I can see it while I'm working and less convenient. :hmm:

    What I did when I was trying to decide about a Brompton was to hire one for 24 hours from Velorution on Great Titchfield Street. Cost about £15 and it convinced me that it worked for my journey. IIRC, you can discount the hire cost against a subsequent purchase, but it may be one of the other shops round town that will hire one that does this. Could be worth doing.
     
  10. Boycey

    Boycey juvenile rave slut

    brompton all the way, dahon are awful. they've also lost their distributor so supply of spares will probably be borked as will warranties. some brands license the designs which may be worth a look if absolutely have to.

    i've been fairly vocal about this when it's come up in the past. :oops:
     
  11. editor

    editor Like an ultra left hatboy on heat

    So you keep saying, but I've done hundreds of miles on my Dahon with no problems whatsoever and the Folding Society has posted loads of positive reviews:

    http://www.foldsoc.co.uk/tests.html
     
  12. Hulot

    Hulot Ooh, me parts!

    I've got a Dahon (actually badged as a Ridgeback) and I'm very fond of it. I suspect the 20-inch wheels help somewhat when it's used over longer distances.

    I once took it on a cycling holiday in northern Italy and comfortably clocked up over 800km in five days, carrying all my gear including a tent.
     
  13. Bahnhof Strasse

    Bahnhof Strasse wax weasel

    I ride a Dahon and it is fine. The build quality is crap as are many of the parts it comes with, but once those are replaced it is great, a really comfy ride and it eats the miles.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Boycey

    Boycey juvenile rave slut

    from dahon's own site:

    a couple of years ago

    more recently

    link to their new distributor and all the dahon products they stock, it's better than fishers but doesn't include proprietry integrated headset hardware :facepalm:

    brixton cycles are no longer stocking them, i don't know if that's purely due to the change in distributor or whether they dropped them first. i know at least one person there feels the same as i do. :)
     
  15. Boycey

    Boycey juvenile rave slut

    do they give any bikes a bad review? i thought the bickerton (one of the worst bicycles ever made, actually sub dahon) would come in for a drubbing but they even find positive things to say about that!

    [​IMG]
     
  16. editor

    editor Like an ultra left hatboy on heat

    But actual users here are posting that they've been satisfied with their Dahon bikes.

    I'm a fairly demanding cyclist and still think my Dahon represents excellent value for money. It seems to me you're a bit, well, obsessed with knocking Dahon!
     
  17. Boycey

    Boycey juvenile rave slut

    the anti-lintin :cool::D

    it's not an obsession, it's just my many poor experiences dealing with the bicycles and the many users i've dealt with who have had appalling experiences have informed my opinion in way that is vastly different to yours. i think my opinion is not uncommon within the bicycle industry, it certainly isn't empirically with the people i've spoken to.

    the OP mentioned both brompton and dahon, brompton are no angels when it comes to certain parts but with them it's just a matter of time before the hardware is produced- they also use far less proprietry components. they are beautifully designed and also actually made in london which is kinda the cherry on the cake.
     
  18. editor

    editor Like an ultra left hatboy on heat

    I'd love to get a Brompton. But they're about twice the price. :eek:
     
  19. Boycey

    Boycey juvenile rave slut

    their entry level is ~£600 iirc, for a UK built folder that's actually pretty impressive. if you could cyclescheme it you could get one for ~£400 :)

    the dawes ace mentioned in the OP is based on a dahon design (actually, it is a dahon design) may have been made by dahon and rebadged but i don't know enough about that particular model to tell, it would be far better if it came out of a dawes factory if they have such things. it is a £6-700 bike though which puts a brompton well within budget, it will have less features but what it does have will last longer and work better without the issues with spare parts associated with dahon.
     
  20. editor

    editor Like an ultra left hatboy on heat

    Never had any 'issues.' I expect most users don't either. I wouldnt have fancied taking Brompton's entry level folder on my ride up Dartmoor either.
     
  21. Smangus

    Smangus comatose at a desk

    Cheers for the responses , I have thought about locking my bike up but I got it 12 years ago and it has been everywhere so I am quite attached to it and wouldn’t like to see it go walkies. Its lasted this long because I only lock it outside on very rare occasions. Also it’s a very nice ride (ooer missus) with a solid Raleigh 531 frame and campag bits on it. I have thought about the Brompton route but the basic model are only 3 speed and I would like more than that, when you start to look at 6 speeders then the price starts to go up quite sharply.

    Also I like the idea of 20” wheels for a smoother ride which is why I started to look at the dahons etc. I think the idea of hiring is really good (thanks cybertect) so may try that for starters and see where it gets me.

    I have done a bit of research on the net, bromptons are well known and respected so you know what you are getting. I haven’t read any real negative comments about Dahons until this thread but I guess people all have their favourite marques etc

    The Dawes looks great for commuting as it has rack and dynamo included in the price which is pretty cool. Some good offers on the net at the moment for all sorts as well so I’ll have to make my mind up quick like as the spring sales seem to be in full flow. Added to which getting on the train in this fine weather is doing my head in!!


    ps Ed which model have u got?
     
  22. editor

    editor Like an ultra left hatboy on heat

    Dahon Jetstream. Here it is somewhere in Cornwall!

    [​IMG]
     
  23. Smangus

    Smangus comatose at a desk

    Cool ,arse comfy suspension too….:cool:
     
  24. Ted Striker

    Ted Striker Foot's on the other hand

    I've got a Dahon Matrix. It's one of the ones with a full size (ish?) wheel and therefore looks less obviously like a folder (not that I've got anything against small folders...). It's certainly not a 'put it in your pocket' number like the bromptons or some of the smaller wheeled Dahon range.

    In London, it inifnitely increases your 'scenic bike ride' potential bacause you can take it on all forms of public transport without worry (including days when you can't be arsed to cycle home/have a puncture (as yet avoided)), and I don't think it's caused much of a comprimise with regards to build quality and parts availability.

    I can only wholeheartedly recommend them on that basis.

    I could quite believe that they may have dodgy after sales service, though it's certainly not been an issue to me as Evans (through ride2work) have always sorted any problems (which have been limited to a few loose spokes and a re-alignment of the gears post delivery).

    I did a 52 mile charity cycle ride last year and it took all that in it's stride, as well as the honeymoon period of a 30 mile round commute, 3 times a week.

    Here she is...
    http://www.evanscycles.com/products/dahon/matrix-2008-folding-bike-ec000323#BVRRWidgetID

    The only changes I've made are to put bull bars on and change the saddle, all done without any hassle.

    My favourite folders are Airnimals, though I can't justify that at the mo!
     
  25. Bahnhof Strasse

    Bahnhof Strasse wax weasel

    A woman who gets off at my station in the morning has one, so I had a nosey the other day, they come in around £1500-2000 :eek: How can they be worth that? :confused:
     
  26. Cid

    Cid Degenerate Scum

    Joey starts at around £800 (so wrong that I keep thinking Deacon at the end of that :oops:). But other than that, design, components etc I suppose... Not hard to spend that much on a decent road bike or MTB, don't really know about folders though.
     
  27. Boycey

    Boycey juvenile rave slut

    the extra engineering required to make a bike that folds well but maintains some kind of ride qualities forces the cost up. airnimals are pretty fucking cool. :cool:
     
  28. Oswaldtwistle

    Oswaldtwistle Banned

    Including London Buses? With a full size folder?
     
  29. cybertect

    cybertect Now up West

    Taking anything on a bus is always at the driver's discretion on the spot, bikes or otherwise.

    Though I've never had a problem with my Brompton.
     
  30. Oswaldtwistle

    Oswaldtwistle Banned

    Bromptons are quite a bit smaller than a full size folder, though.......
     

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