Folding Bikes - Thudbuster
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06-25-10, 03:55 AM
I recently bought a LT (long travel) Thudbuster and am using it on my Birdy. (The Thudbuster is a kind of suspension seat post - see http://www.thudbuster.com/products.html )
I have my own ideas about how well it works but I am curious about what others have found when running them on folding bikes.
You have come to the right place to ask! :)
I have used the LT on 2 of my bikes and tried it on a third. The 2 bikes were a Yeah and a R20, and I was perfectly happy with the results. I used blue+black elastomers, a bit harder than the recommendation which I though too soft and bouncy when pedaling at my preferred cadence, 80-90.
I also put the TB once on my Downtube Mini which has a rubber doorstop in the back for suspension instead of the spring with which it came. Well, I hated it - way too much sway and movement. I would likewise never consider putting it on the Birdy, in fact I plan to get rid of the last one since I no longer have a bike for it.
So my own preference is definitely NO TB on a bike with built-in suspension.
(PS I still haven't put a rubber doorstop on the Birdy yet. Far too busy right now.)
06-25-10, 08:35 AM
makes sense what Jur says .... ( mostly it does ... exceptions are the rule )
I would ONLY put a short travel on anything which already has suspension or on hard ridden road only go fast bikes...
the long travel is plush and combined with any existing suspension its just too much bouncy ness.....
06-25-10, 07:01 PM
06-25-10, 07:04 PM
We have them on our custom Fridays (Crusoe & NWT) and they work great with the 1.35" tires we like on those bikes. We do use Elastomers one step above those Cane Creek recommends - At 200lbs I use Black/Black and at 160lbs the wife uses Blue /Black - otherwise the ride is too spongy. I would have to say we hardly notice their effect, but riding behind my wife I can see her saddle travel a considerable distance when she goes over a bump.
On the other hand, our Bike Friday Pocket 8's with their stock 1.75" Kenda tires, feel pretty much the same as the custom bikes, which means that the wider tires work similarly as shock absorbers.
I also have an older ThudBuster LT on my 2005 Dahon S1. On it I use a Blue/Black elastomer combo to get the same dampening as Black/Black on the newer LT. (The S1 is a rougher riding bike than the Fridays - it's needs the ThudBuster even though it has 1.75" Tioga Pool Comp Tires.)
06-29-10, 04:49 PM
FWIW, I am very pleased with the LT Thudbuster on my Birdy. The supplied polyurethane bushes and preload work fine with my weight (88kg).
With the ex-Daewoo rear suspension bush replacement and the Thudbuster, I think the ride quality is now excellent.
Yesterday I rode a mixture of Australian country dirt and bitumen roads that I have ridden many times before and I'd rate the ride quality of the equipped Birdy as second only to my suspension recumbent trike, and perhaps better than the trike on coarse dirt (lots of little rocks and pebbles). I also find the Birdy suprisingly stable on gravel - much more so than a Brompton that I have also ridden a lot on these roads.
I had thought of swapping the rear rubber bush back to standard but I won't do that as the Thudbuster doesn't of course suspend any loads being carried on the rear carrier, so the advantage of the longer travel rear suspension still applies.
Yesterday while rolling quickly down long empty hills I also experimented with taking my hands off the steering. As others have reported, when this is done the front wheel of the Birdy instantly starts to shimmy very badly. The movement doesn't build up - it just immediately happens. It's weird because when being controlled by two hands, the bike's front end feels immensely stable. Even with one hand off the steering, at speed the stability feels marginal. Has anyone ever fitted a steering damper to a Birdy?
06-30-10, 07:10 AM
I put a LT on my hard tail mountain bike this spring and it instantly doubled the amount of time I could ride. Yesterday, I put the ST model on my R20. The hardest elastomer(they put numbers, not colors on the new ones) coupled with the Brooks B66 provides a cushy yet firm ride. The saddle springs still give left and right as I pedal and the Thudbuster isn't noticable. Two hours into a ride down patchwork roads and I noticed I'm not the least bit sore.
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