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  1. #1
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    Kona Africa Bike

    There's been talk about euro-style commuters. Anyone heard about these:



    http://www.konabiketown.com/

    Read an article about them in Dirt Rag. Apparently they'll be making them available here in North America soon in SS and 3sp models. For every 2 sold they'll send one to Africa,or you can sponsor bikes directly.

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  2. #2
    Senior_Member2 diff_lock2's Avatar
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    I really don't like that riding position, my mom has a bike like that. its ok for 1(one)km after that its a pain.

    Also there very boat-like with the handling. but thats just me.

  3. #3
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    Not my cup of tea either. But there's been a couple of threads about why there aren't more bikes of this design available in America.

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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by dynaryder
    Not my cup of tea either. But there's been a couple of threads about why there aren't more bikes of this design available in America.
    Well, for the casual utility commuter, a bike like this is right up his/her alley. I'd take it if everything (work, library, grocery market, entertainment, etc.) was within one mile of my house, though.

    +3 on the "not my kind of bike" list...

  5. #5
    Mr. Maximan1 maximan1's Avatar
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    My sister has one thats designed like this, and I also find it very hard to ride.
    Its so stupidly...stupid......

  6. #6
    There's time now icedmocha's Avatar
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    i think people who arent used to riding would be very keen on this. It is not my cup of tea however everything about it seems to fit the wants of those who I know that dont ride.

  7. #7
    Senior Member GP's Avatar
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    Looks like a basic beach cruiser with a basket and rack.

  8. #8
    not a role model JeffS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by icedmocha
    i think people who arent used to riding would be very keen on this. It is not my cup of tea however everything about it seems to fit the wants of those who I know that dont ride.
    It's not like similar bikes haven't existed for years. They haven't convinced these non-riders to start so this one shouldn't either.

    I guess I'm just overly unimpressed with the Africa bike movement - maybe after I've solved a couple thousand more pressing world issues.

  9. #9
    Commuter Choccy's Avatar
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    Do you think people who don't ride much would be any good on a fixed gear bike. Can't believe nobody noticed.

  10. #10
    not a role model JeffS's Avatar
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    I think it's safe to assume there's a freewheel in there.

  11. #11
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    A bike shaped like that? It's a good bet that it's a freewheel singlespeed.

  12. #12
    There's time now icedmocha's Avatar
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    It says it will also come in 3spd models.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Choccy
    Do you think people who don't ride much would be any good on a fixed gear bike. Can't believe nobody noticed.
    That isn't a fixed gear, and if that's not what you meant then I have no idea what you just said.
    Other than the fact that I've never tried that riding style, and it's about $200 away from what I'd ever pay, I like it.

  14. #14
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    The bicycle comes with a saddle with springs. It should have also came with a suspension seat post because you'll hit each and every bump since the geometry prevents your from standing up and having your legs act as suspension.

  15. #15
    Mr. cost-benefit analysis
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    I think that even the most manic road and mountain bike riders would find a bike like this a Godsend if they had grown up with little hope of ever owning a car... walking most everywhere they went... on roads which are overwhelmingly dirt or semi imporved... and, oh yea, not having a shop full of tools and spare parts to keep their high tech wonder bikes maintained around the next corner. Of course if they had grown up in 90% of Africa, they would have just as much a chance of owning their high tech wonder bikes as they would the aforementioned automobile.

    I think it sad to see bicycle enthusiasts, who are fortunate enough to be able to ride just about any bike they desire, not able to really consider what the Africa bike is really about and instead gripe about how they couldn't do a century or win a roadrace on it. Folks on this forum should have no trouble understanding the Africa bike movement. What someone needs in the middle of that kind of poverty is a bike which will pedal down the trail for years with little to no maintenance - because the means to maintain it just might not be available for many miles. With the exception of riding position, I think the bike pictured above is what most of us would build for ourselves if we found ourselves standed in similar circumstances.

    Bottomfeeder

    PS; With the exceptions of food, clean drinking water and medical staff and medicines, basic transportation is the best thing we can give to struggling populations.

  16. #16
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    Bottomfeeder, I'm not a road racer nor am I a mountain biker. Like I'd said in my first post above, it's a fine bike for a casual rider or pure utility cyclist.

  17. #17
    M_S
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    I like that it's utilitarian. The tires are a nice touch, so that it can presumably handle some potholey roads and the like. To me though it seems like a n elongated touring frame, nit necessarily with drop bars though, would be much better for utilitarian purposes. I dunno.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by M_S
    I like that it's utilitarian. The tires are a nice touch, so that it can presumably handle some potholey roads and the like. To me though it seems like a n elongated touring frame, nit necessarily with drop bars though, would be much better for utilitarian purposes. I dunno.
    Drop bars aren't needed for a 3 mile ride. They also seem to intimidate most casual cyclists, from what I've seen at the LBS and on my rides.

  19. #19
    tired donnamb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffS
    I guess I'm just overly unimpressed with the Africa bike movement - maybe after I've solved a couple thousand more pressing world issues.
    One pressing world issue is infant mortality and maternal mortality from childbirth. Both problems are greatly alleviated by midwives. Midwives in places like Africa often cannot get to their clients by foot in time to save lives. They certainly could never afford a motor vehicle. These simple bicycles you're overly unimpressed with can mean the difference between dying from childbirth and surviving it.

    Perhaps you can think there are more pressing world issues than a bunch of African women dying in childbirth along with their babies. Fair enough, but I'm absolutely positive that to a woman in labor, whether she lives or dies is the most pressing issue in her world.

  20. #20
    One speed: FAST ! fordfasterr's Avatar
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    I wonder if it comes with reflectors?

    I don't see any in the pics but perhaps the production models actually have them... who knows if they need them in some rural parts of Africa, but in more populated areas with cars around it might help......
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  21. #21
    Happy old man al-wagner's Avatar
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    It looks something like what my mother in law rode around in the mid 70's to goto the pool. Wearing he swimsuit and her bathing cap.
    http://www.thegmbc.com/
    http://www.gmaa.net/

    In New England we have nine months of winter and three months of damned poor sledding.

  22. #22
    Mr. cost-benefit analysis
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    Quote Originally Posted by donnamb
    One pressing world issue is infant mortality and maternal mortality from childbirth. Both problems are greatly alleviated by midwives. Midwives in places like Africa often cannot get to their clients by foot in time to save lives. They certainly could never afford a motor vehicle. These simple bicycles you're overly unimpressed with can mean the difference between dying from childbirth and surviving it.

    Perhaps you can think there are more pressing world issues than a bunch of African women dying in childbirth along with their babies. Fair enough, but I'm absolutely positive that to a woman in labor, whether she lives or dies is the most pressing issue in her world.
    And AIDS healthcare workers can travel to more villages and see three times as many patients in a given day if they're not walking.

    Bottomfeeder

  23. #23
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    I don't they they can sell them legally here without reflectors.

  24. #24
    Senior Member mihlbach's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fat_bike_nut
    A bike shaped like that? It's a good bet that it's a freewheel singlespeed.

    No, no no. Its obviously not a singlespeed...theres no handbrakes. And its also fairly obvious that they wouldn't make it a brakeless fixie. Its clearly a coaster brake. You can see the coaster brake arm bolted to the right chainstay. The idea is to make it as low maintenence as possible.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by mihlbach
    No, no no. Its obviously not a singlespeed...theres no handbrakes. And its also fairly obvious that they wouldn't make it a brakeless fixie. Its clearly a coaster brake. You can see the coaster brake arm bolted to the right chainstay. The idea is to make it as low maintenence as possible.
    Well, if there are no brake levers, of course it's a coaster brake

    I guess I had my terminology mixed up, then.

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