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Old 02-13-10, 11:39 AM   #1
Tentacle Master
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Fuji Marlboro Redlof folding bike

The story:
I was pawn hopping for, what else? bikes, when I came across a fuji, well anything name brand among all the nexts, roadmasters and schwinns interests me. It was a mountain bike, with no model, and a Marlboro sticker on it but there was something bizarre about the frame geometry, I couldn't put my finger on the why the tubing was the way it was. Thumb tension shifters, steel wheels and cantis, I knew it was old. I was all over this bike. I discovered a V shaped loop underneath a cylinder in the downtube near the BB. When I bent down over the top of the bike I saw a small word stamped into the frame. Since I was upside down my brain read "foldeR" what it really said was "Redlof". It hit me, the bike was a folding bike. It for no reason looked like a folding bike, It was a MTB that folded!! I could bairly contain my excitement. But the price tag was $150. That was crap. I asked an employee and they said it was because it had a that stupid Marlboro sticker on it. I argued that had been but on later and the fact that it had a broken shifter and was clearly over 20 years old meant it should be under $100. I couldn't talk them down. So I was patient, I waited a week, did some research, went back, separated a new guy from the herd and talked to him about the bike he offered $100 and in my blind excitement I forgot to talk him down lower. So when I paid in cash, had the receipt in my hand, I asked the guy for a hand, handed him the saddle/post, folded the bike like I had owned the thing all my life, clipped on the handlebars, and "ripped" the seat from his hand and walked it out the door. You should have seen the look on their faces esp the new guy who got a chewing out from his boss as I watched from my car.

here's what I know:
-Its made with 4130 chromo (decal on bike)
-The bike was a promo from Marlboro during the 80s
-you sent in so many packs of cigarettes and chose your prize
-The bike was one of the best most "expensive" prizes.
-As such its likley that whatever 6 pack a day smokers that had enough packs to redeem for this thing didn't have the lung capacity to use it. Also it was easy to store and forget about.
-because of the above these bikes are found/sold with very little wear and original components.
-It is more appropriate to describe a Redlof as a hide-a-bike instead of a folding bike.
-Next to the "Redlof" stamp is the name of the real manufacturer which escapes me right now. (maybe ATB)

I put on a bolt-on hanger, an Alivio RD, and some cheap EF-50 (Acera) trigger shifters/brake levers. I also redid the housing and gave it more slack so you didn't have to move the cables around when you folded it and snap the handle bars on. I decided the wheels were ok for now since they were basically brand new. I use it on and off when I need a to get a bike in my car fast.

I have alot of info on this bike but I was wondering if someone could fill in the details, specifically can I date my redlof? Why fuji? just what is its weight in cigarettes?
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Old 02-13-10, 11:53 AM   #2
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Is it like this one?

http://phoenix.craigslist.org/wvl/bik/1596429705.html
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Old 02-13-10, 12:23 PM   #3
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yes it is.
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Old 02-13-10, 12:34 PM   #4
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They were available by saving coupons that were in Marlboro cigarette packs. I had one and ended up putting the frame in the recycle pile at the landfill,
mine had been rode hard and put away wet.
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Old 02-13-10, 01:08 PM   #5
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I had one that I bought for $50 from a pawn shop a few years ago. It was too small for me, so I traded the frame to a friend.
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Old 02-13-10, 04:10 PM   #6
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I had one too, but sold it to a needy college kid. It has low end components, but it fits me so well and the ride was nice, plus it folds. I was going to upgrade the components little by little.
I would buy one again for a good price (<$100), if I could find one.
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Old 02-13-10, 04:17 PM   #7
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I've seen so many of those things in town it's ridiculous. Almost all of them seem to be the bright red variety though, not the darker metallic as in the example in the Phoenix ad appears to be.

-Kurt
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Old 02-13-10, 04:28 PM   #8
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I had a chance at one of those about a year and a half ago, from one of the local guys with a yard full of bikes (he's not around anymore). Wasn't all that interested in it as he wanted a bit over $100 on it. In retrospect, I probably should have tried to grind him down a bit - that would have been a good bike to keep at work as my lunchtime commuter.

My, at the time, live in girlfriend was real big into collecting those coupons (she worked at a convenience store), and I still have some of the stuff we got from the promotion. Gotta give Marlboro credit, none of the stuff they were selling was junk. Low end, maybe, but still better quality than you'd expect for that kind of promotion.
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Old 02-13-10, 06:06 PM   #9
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I picked mine up for $50 with all the original components showing little wear. The frame is quality Fuji construction and has a very road worthy ride. A little bit of flex in the pivoting joints, but hey, it folds! Only time I've really noticed it was standing on the pedals to pull a hill.

Back when I lived in SF Bay, I would commute back and forth on it and then fold it up to hop on BART trains during bicycle restricted hours.

Mine is set up with Deore drive train and 1.25 Performance kevlar road slicks on Sun rims. The only thing left thats original is the frame itself and the cheap Velo saddle thats actually quite comfortable for fast commutes.
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Old 02-13-10, 08:32 PM   #10
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One of these was a best of craigslist I think. I can't remember which forum I saw it on, but it was one hell of an ad.
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Old 02-13-10, 08:56 PM   #11
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I picked up one of these at a yard sale last Spring for $10.........it was like new condition though a bit dusty. I cleaned it up, went through it and flipped it pretty quick for $85
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Old 02-13-10, 11:20 PM   #12
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One of these was a best of craigslist I think. I can't remember which forum I saw it on, but it was one hell of an ad.
here is the ad you are talking about:

First off, this bike is red. Red is a great color, and if you don't like the idea of having a red bike, you suck.

Now that all the red-haters have left, lets get down to brass tacks. You are looking at a genuine, dyed-in-the-wool, beer bike. The beer bike is what you ride to get to beer, bring beer back, or when you've had too much beer. (Can't advise drinking and riding, but this bike can handle that eventuality.) The primary merits of the beer bike is that it is indestructible, can carry beer, can carry you, and is theft proof.

This bike is all of those.

The frame was made by Fuji, out of steel, which means it's pretty close to indestructible, as an added bonus it folds when you take out the seat post. It has the original Marlboro badge, which makes it a symbol of cool if you smoke, and a symbol of I'm-so-cool-that-I-don't-smoke-but-ironically-ride-a-cigarette-ad if you aren't a smoker. Bike is from a smoke-free home, but once it's yours you can do whatever you want. The wheels aren't cheap crap off some Schwinn. The front is a decent double walled rim, and a tough-as-nails Shimano hub. The rear is a (bulletproof) Sturmy-Archer coaster brake hub and Sun Rhino Lite rim. This wheel was hand built specifically for a downhill coaster brake bike race, and will outlive you, your children, and possibly their grandchildren if the world doesn't end in 2012. Single speed, so there's no fancy-pants shifters or derailers to get caught on things or broken. Coaster brake, so it works in any weather, and is extraordinarily low maintenance. Comes with XL marshmallow bag to protect the seat, possibly the most vulnerable part of the bike.

Clearly indestructible.

Better yet, it comes with a beer rack attached to the handle bars. You may have to periodically have to slap people who refer to the beer holder as a basket. Pansies have baskets. This is a BEER HOLDER. Avoid confusion by keeping beer in it at all times.

This bike can carry you. I'm 6'1" and this bike could handle up to a 6'3" dude before it got silly looking. The top tube is horizontal above the ground at 31", if your junk hangs lower than 32" you might be too small for this bike. Remember the indestructible part? That holds true even if you're a linebacker. You can't crush this, it's steel. It's real. It has front and rear fenders for all-weather, all-terrain rides. The front fender is steel, and the sharp edges can be used to decapitate zombies in 2012. The seat is comfy, it's made out of some sort of foam rubber crap. It looks hella ugly though, which leads us right into part four: theft proof.

To want to steal this bike, your thief would have to be a true connoisseur of bicycles. All of the awesomeness inherent in this bike is hidden behind it's ugly seat, chipped paint, the marshmallow bag and the kickstand. The rear wheel, arguably the most valuable part of the bike, is bolted on. If this bike gets stolen, one could be sure that it was taken by someone who appreciates the sheer clarity of purpose this bike has. The will to succeed where other bikes fall short.

If you're still reading this post odds are you and the bike are a good match. The price is listed at $300, but I'm open to offers that keep in mind the durability and awesomeness of this bike. I'm only selling it because it's an enabler to behavior "polite society" labels as "undesirable" and my doctor says "you'd better cut it out while you still have a liver."

And because I'm out of beer monies.

The lights don't come with the bike. The lock could, but seriously, who trusts a second hand lock?
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Old 07-04-10, 12:36 PM   #13
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ok, just took out my Fuji Marlboro Folding Mountain Bike. Here is what I found. The real manufacturer is PTB. 4130 Chromoly Tubing. Shumano 515 rear derailer. The bike was purchased between mid 1998 to early 1999, as close as I can figure. The cost was 2500 Marlboro miles PLUS $110 US. And I did not smoke all of the cigarettes myself. I worked as a bartender when it was still legal to smoke in them, along with friends saving their miles for me, I actually acquired the miles quite easily. I have ridden the bike over 2000 miles and is still in great shape, even with a few chips in the paint from rocks. Added a rechargeable headlight and battery operated red blinking rear light for nitetime use (summertime temp during the day can exceed 120 degreesF here, so lots of nighttime riding)! also has a lock holder and changeable combination lock. Patent # is 5330225. I am attempting to look up the serial number to see when it was manufactured. Oh yes, and no where on my bike is a Marlboro sticker of any kind!

Last edited by chefboyardee; 07-04-10 at 12:39 PM. Reason: grammer
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Old 04-29-12, 10:29 AM   #14
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Redlof folder questions

I've recently purchased one of these real cheap, in brand new condition. Was considering upgrading it. Does anyone know what size/type of bottom bracket it uses? Or the size of threaded front fork it uses - it has a narrow steerer tube that expands at the top to accept the quick release stem. Also, I measured 130mm rear spacing, can anyone confirm this? Thanks in advance,
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