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  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    My New Downtube Commuter

    Here are a few pics of my new-ish Downtube VIII commuter.

    I bought the bike for a couple reasons:
    1) space between the wheel and rack for a battery for my homegrown lighting system;
    2) foldability for the occasions when I leave town on a bus and need to get somewhere from the bus stop;
    3) I read pretty positive reviews on this forum;
    4) needed an inexpensive commuter to replace my $80 Jamis Mt. Bike (craigslist purchase) that was better, but not so dear that when (if?) it's stolen I cry.

    Turns out my $16 20w halogen headlight screwed right into the front fork bridge. I've got the xenon flasher on the child seat for greater visibility, though I don't ride at night with the baby - just mornings getting her to daycare.

    the only mod so far is the stem - I sliced an inch of the stock stem to leave in the post, removed the clamp (I needed to file off the welded bits) and screwed on a 1 1/8" threadless stem which fit perfect. I still want to change out the crappy SunRace twist shifter, but that will have to wait since it works reasonably well.

    Prices:
    Downtube VIII - EBay - $244 including shipping.
    Battery - 6Ah 12v battery with fuse wiring harness and protective case $27 including shipping.
    Lamp casing and 20w mra6 lamp - $22
    saddle and stem - leftover parts.

    My general impression of this bike is very positive. It actually seems to have a stiffer front end than my dahon speed8, but with a weight penalty. Overall, i think the al frame is superior to the Dahon's, but the folding machanisms are dorky and inelegant and it is equipped with pretty bottom-tier components. Probably a bike worth buying just for the frame. I am psyched.

    I am considering building a wheel on a shimano 8spd internal hub to make this the ultimate winter commuter. but then I begin to fear damage/theft, etc.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Super_Socks

    I am considering building a wheel on a shimano 8spd internal hub to make this the ultimate winter commuter. but then I begin to fear damage/theft, etc.
    Cool!!...that is exactly what I envision building this weekend on my Downtube FS model as I'm planning to use it more on trails and worsening weather and want to lose the derailleur.

    Bruce

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by BruceMetras
    Cool!!...that is exactly what I envision building this weekend on my Downtube FS model as I'm planning to use it more on trails and worsening weather and want to lose the derailleur.

    Bruce
    I think I will wait til I see one on EBay or Craigslist. at $200 for the hub, 25 for the shifter and more to have a wheel built on it, I am disinclined at the moment. just saw a $10 Sach Spectro 3-spd for about $20 i almost bit on.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    [QUOTE=Mr_Super_Socks]Here are a few pics of my new-ish Downtube VIII commuter.


    the only mod so far is the stem - I sliced an inch of the stock stem to leave in the post, removed the clamp (I needed to file off the welded bits) and screwed on a 1 1/8" threadless stem which fit perfect. I still want to change out the crappy SunRace twist shifter, but that will have to wait since it works reasonably well.

    I am trying to picture how you did the stem modification. If I buy an adjustable stem, the kind that would clamp onto the top of a tube that would still make use of the quick disconnect, how would you recommend I proceed. It sounds like you replaced the vertical stem post altogether, using a quill stem. I would
    prefer to keep the adjustment and folding ability of the bike.

    Any chance for a picture?
    Thanks,
    Hbob

  5. #5
    Bromptonaut 14R's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Super_Socks
    Here are a few pics of my new-ish Downtube VIII commuter.
    Where?

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