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

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

  1. DrRingDing

    DrRingDing 'anti-human wanker'

    Good folding bikes?

    I've just had my 3rd push bike stolen in about 4 months. None of them were worth nicking. The 1st one I bought 2nd hand for £40, the 2nd for £25 and the final one I got for free and was a heap of shite.

    My tactic now is to get a folding bike that I can actually take with me.


    I need bike that will be good to ride everyday about 5 miles and I don't want to spend silly money so it'll have to be a make/model that I can get 2nd hand.

    Does anybody have any pointers?

  2. DrRingDing

    DrRingDing 'anti-human wanker'

    FYI, I'll be taking it on the train everyday and will cycling only in town.
  3. Geri

    Geri wasn't born to follow

    I think Brompton are the best, but also the priciest.
  4. Boycey

    Boycey juvenile rave slut

    brompton would be the way to go IMO- especially if you want it to fold for public transport.

    there's also dahon which is cheaper and some people like them, i am not one of those people.
  5. dynamicbaddog

    dynamicbaddog Well-Known Member

  6. DownwardDog

    DownwardDog Riding a Brompton with a power meter.

    Really, you've got to have a Brompton just so you can't be confused with the type of person who can't afford one. The Dahon is the Porsche Boxster of folding bikes. "No honestly, I could afford a 911, I just didn't want one."

    I've got a Brompton S and it's very good.
  7. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Brompton's are great bikes but monstrously expensive. Dahon produce some excellent bikes that are great value - me and Em cycled from Plymouth to the top of Dartmoor on ours and they performed excellently.

    There's been a few useful threads on this topic, so I'm going to get merging.
  8. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Blimey - there was ten different threads on folding bikes, so they've been slamdunked together into this bumper uber-thread which I think warrants a sticky.

    This is the folder I'd like for Christmas, please:

  9. DrRingDing

    DrRingDing 'anti-human wanker'

    Having normal sized wheels is tempting but the idea is to have a bike that is commutable.
  10. DrRingDing

    DrRingDing 'anti-human wanker'

    ....and I love the swinging out of the back wheel of the Bromptons. It looks very easy seeing other commuters pick their folded bikes up and the job is nearly done.
  11. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Brompton's are fantastically compact, but that's offset by the teensy weensy wheels which generally make them less stable than bigger wheeled folders. If you can afford one and you're only looking to cover short distances, you can't go wrong with a Brompton.
  12. uk benzo

    uk benzo أنا ليس أمريكي

    Does she get off at Victoria? I think I've seen her. I have a Dahon Speed D7; I feel quite insignificant when I walk past her.

    I'd love a faster folder, as the 7 gears on my Dahon Speed D7 are beginning to feel rather laborious in London.

    I cycle from Herne Hill to East Acton most days, but on the lazy day, I'll do Victoria Stn. to East Acton. It can knacker me out on a windy day.
  13. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

    Most Bromptons only have three gears. Some only have one.
  14. uk benzo

    uk benzo أنا ليس أمريكي

    That is true, but I've been riding my speed D7 since early 2008- I want more speed. I want one of these:


    It has 27 gears and weighs less than 10kg.
  15. Greebo

    Greebo 'scuse me, Mrs May, can I have my country back? R.I.P.

    Any suggestions for which folding bike I should get my (nearly 70) mum? She wants something to ride along the local canal tow paths, but will be driving there. Can't lift a bike onto a rack and doesn't intend to start removing front wheels at her age just to fit a bike in her hatchback. The budget is up to £400, it should fold & unfold easily, ride like a normal bike, and not need a lot of fussing about with. BTW she is quite short.

    Edited to add: she'd be riding up to 5 miles at a time on it, and it should be able to take a (small) pannier rack.
  16. DownwardDog

    DownwardDog Riding a Brompton with a power meter.

    I'm going to modify my previous position here as I rode a Dahon Jetstream today and was very favourably impressed.
  17. pinkmonkey

    pinkmonkey 2.4 hour party person

    I'd be intrested to see what is recommended, I keep toying with the idea of getting a folder, coz my bike gets really fucked up, coz I chain it to the roof of my boat, but whenever I have to use a bike on the towpath, I'm relieved I'm on my mountain bike.

    Towpaths (ones outside of London) are often not exactly the smoothest terrain and some of them are downright treacherous.
  18. doddles

    doddles Appreciates the good eggs

    I have a Dahon Espresso. It's too expensive for the build quality (OK - but not great) and not really fully portable. But with 26" wheels it feels very sturdy on the London roads, rides well, and I know I can always fold it and take it in a cab/friend's car/train if I need to.
  19. urbanspaceman

    urbanspaceman Well-Known Member

    Brompton M3


    I've had a Brompton M3 for a while now:

    1) the six gears - three inside the hub with a two speed derailleur - are fine for most of the gradients in London

    2) it takes a short time to get used to the lack of directionality of the small wheels and the feeing of skittishness. But this, and the narrow handlebars, make the Brompton very maneouverable in traffic

    3) If you pump the tires up, the bike is surprisingly nippy. It's no racer, but can keep up with most bike traffic.

    4) Don't buy the rear rack - the front bag is big and a stable fit on the plastic wedge (which cracked and was replaced)

    5) The factory seat is mediocre and disintegrated. I fitted a Brookes B73


    which makes quite a difference by damping out some of the ride harshness that is an unavoidable feature of small wheels.

    It's not a lightweight, but it's robust and well-made; with some care it will last for many years.
  20. SaskiaJayne

    SaskiaJayne Rural Guerrilla

    Dunno if this has been mentioned before in this thread, but always check ebay for folding bikes, theres always Bromptons in good nick going for £3-400 odd & the sort of mid range folders that normally sell for £160-£200 odd can be had for £50-£80. Many of these are descrbed as 'ridden twice'. Folks do seem to have a habit of buying folding bike, using for a short time, dumping in garage for a yr & then ebay. Always several for sale in the London area.
  21. cybertect

    cybertect It's grim up north (London)

    Wouldn't that make it an M6, not an M3? ;) (I have an M6R)

    The rear rack is quite handy for easily rolling the bike around while folded (if you fit Ezy wheels in place of the standard ones) and helps keep it more stable than the rackless version when it's folded (making it harder for it to fall over on a train).

    TBF though, I've very rarely used the rear rack for actually carrying anything. Most everything goes in the front bag fine.
  22. uk benzo

    uk benzo أنا ليس أمريكي

    Does anyone own a Mezzo? If so, how do you find it in terms of sturdiness and comfort?

    I'm thinking of getting a Mezzo D-9 (9 gears).
  23. teccuk

    teccuk fire kills children

    Uhm, i need a folder as i'm going to be commuting soon.

    Didn't realise that Bromptons were quite so expensive! And they don't do standard models :/ Specc'ed one up for about a grand!!!

    So I think its a Dahon curve D3 for me. Anyone got one? What's it like?
  24. editor

    editor Taffus Maximus

  25. teccuk

    teccuk fire kills children

    Thanks for the link editor!
  26. Part 2

    Part 2 bizarre wanking accident

    careful with Winstanleys, they don't always have things in stock but have been known to take the money regardless. Best to ring and confirm.
  27. Piers Gibbon

    Piers Gibbon Well-Known Member

    really enjoying my M3 brompton...back on a bike regularly for the first time in years and loving the foldability - enabled me to get the train to east putney then cycle the last mile to friends house...and today I'm off on an adventure along the river lea, and if it all gets too much I'll fold and eff off on a bus..hahaha

    I tried the S handlebars in the shop but I think I'm glad I went for the more old-man style M handlebars

    Got soaked twice the other people carry around plastic trousers for days like that??
  28. Structaural

    Structaural in Chatsubo

    I do. I quite enjoy cycling in the rain in full waterproofs, cosy. Without, not so much...
  29. Piers Gibbon

    Piers Gibbon Well-Known Member

    I am going to get some then...thanks
  30. Placid Casual27

    Placid Casual27 Gorau Chwarae Cyd Chwarae

    I've ordered a Brompton M3. I am beyond excited. That's all

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