I recently picked up a nice 6 speed Brompton (owner says bought in 2012) with Ergon Grip Handlebar Ends and EaZy-wheels upgrades. The gentlemen also upgraded to a smaller sprocket for hilly terrain (he'll ship me the original).
The reason I got a Brompton was really for compact-ability. I can put it on the front seat of my truck (on the floor), and wouldn't have to leave it outside if I biked to the office, and look forward to taking it on a trip or two when I travel (there is plenty of material on that on this forum)
I am just a hair under 6' and weigh 210-220lb depending on the season and time of day
As soon as I jumped on it I knew that I probably need a bit extra height on the front wheel and most likely the seat, as my leg doesn't fully extend when I ride, and i feel too much pressure on my palms as I ride (I had a similar issue with the Downtube that I own, but never got around of upgrading, primarily because I stopped riding it for longish (5mi+) distances.
I saw the Aber Hallo recommended (which was also recommended for the downtube when I had similar complaints) Aber Hallo Stem
I searched the forums, but couldn't confirm.
1) will it affect the fold-ability of the bike?
2) do I need to modify any cables to add it?
I think I would like to take care of the handlebar first, before moving on to the seat. On the seat side it seems like it's pretty straight forward to get the telescoping seat post (to avoid losing portability with the extended one).
I have an unsprung Gyes saddle that has taller rails than any of my Brooks so yes, choice in saddle can help as well.
Originally Posted by NetComrade
... On the seat side it seems like it's pretty straight forward to get the telescoping seat post (to avoid losing portability with the extended one)...
I have the extended seat post (I'm ~6'2" with ~33" inseam, pedal with the balls of my feet, keep my toes pointed downward somewhat, don't fully extend my legs and don't rock my hips) and it gave me the reach I needed, with a Brooks B17 mounted at the top of the Pentaclip, yet will still allow the bike to fit into the Brompton® cover/bag.
Last edited by BassNotBass; 12-28-15 at 09:28 AM.
Reason: Added info
The Aber Hallo will affect the fold and those who use one fit a QR in place of the stem bolt to allow for easy rotation when folding. An advantage to the Alber Hallo which adds about 2 inches is you can swap bars simply by removing the front plate and not taking everything off the the bar. Although this may be heretical, I use other than stock cabling for my Brompton and it works fine as long as the cables are long enough to allow for the fold. I also use a V-brake aluminum tube on my front brake which allowed me to get rid off the cable disc since it keeps the cable where it should be. An easy and cheap way to get some height on your bars, which appears to be flat bars with bullhorns, would be to go with a riser bar. Calhoun cycles sell just such a bar with cables etc. Or you can fit a new or used MTN bike bar. The stem fits MTN bike bars very well but road bars are too thick. BTW, as you push your seat back, it increases the distance from your pelvis to the pedal, so a Brooks all the way back, and a Pentaclip set up to maximize the set back may allow you to extend your legs all the way. This will also effectively increase the top tube length which may help with your handlebar issue.
Bikes: Rivendell Sam Hillborne DTT in Awesome Green; Brompton M6R (reduced gearing) in Sage Green; GT Timberline Hybrid (10 years old!)
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You could just get the extended seat post. I'm 5'11" and 220 lbs, so almost the same physical size you are. I ride my Brompton with the extended post and it feels great. I assume that the bike has better grips than the cheap foam ones it originally comes with. I put Ergon grips on - big difference.
And the saddle looks a little too far forward and tilted too sharply downwards at the nose to me. You might be sliding towards the front, shortening your effective leg length and putting too much stress on your palms and wrists.
I like having the saddle as far forward as it will go to get the pedals under me as much as possible. IMHO it's easier to transfer power, like standing up and pedaling, and since it's closer to standing it relieves some of the pressure from both my butt and wrists.
I wanted to report back that I flipped he pentaclip and moved the seat back and it helped a lot.
It still doesn't feel perfect, but riding now is comfortable.
I biked around Baltimore a bit, but it's a bit too cold to bike for long enough to assess long ride comfort level.
I've also decided to keep the Brompton seat for now. I really have no complaints about it.
I decided against extended post for now (but I do see chinese-made Ti ones on ebay)
Similarly won't upgrade the stem I get to ride some more.
I am seriously considering taking the bike on a plane, and been following all the related threads (going somewhere warm)
So far the only upgrade I've made is order the S-bag from BikeInn.
Been following various 'travel light' threads/blogs outside of this forum (to minimize 'stuff' while travelling)
My new dream is to try to board a plane with bike and S-bag and nothing else.
Challenge with that is to have multi-functional clothing good enough for casual business attire.