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Folding Bikes Discuss the unique features and issues of folding bikes. Also a great place to learn what folding bike will work best for your needs.

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Old 03-23-06, 12:39 PM   #1
bpmwriter
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Hi all,

I'm new to this. I have plans to spend some time in New England and Toronto this summer and looking for recommendations on folding bikes. If possible, I'd like to get one for under $200; the bikes I've found in this price range are mostly the Downtube brand on eBay. Most of the Dahons are over $300, yes? As for folded size, this is not a huge factor for me. I don't need to store this at work, just something that will fit behind the seat in my Toyota Tacoma. So I can give up a little portability for quality and affordability. The other thing I'm looking for is comfort since I suffer from fibromyalgia (muscle pain) and my butt, thighs and hips get sore easily. I don't intend to do any rough or city riding, mostly path and leisure.

Any guidance on bikes to consider and best places to shop online would be greatly appreciated. I'd love to make biking a bigger part of my life.

Thanks!
Eddie

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Old 03-23-06, 01:00 PM   #2
Wavshrdr
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Eddie - welcome to the forum. You are pretty much dead on about your choices. You could also look for a used one on eBay as well. You could get a Dahon single speed Boardwalk new for what you want to pay or a new DT (Downtube) close to that. What are your physical dimensions such as height and weight? DT is really more comfortable for a shorter person than the Boardwalk. With you physical issues you don't want a single speed bike.
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Old 03-23-06, 01:18 PM   #3
bpmwriter
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Hi Wave,

Thanks for the advice. I'm on the short side, 5'6" with an average frame (150 lbs), so it sounds like the DT is the way to go. Specifically, I've been looking at the 2005 DT VIII with 20" wheels. Sound like a good fit for me??

Eddie
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Old 03-23-06, 01:46 PM   #4
Tomaso
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Hi Eddie,

I agree with Wav, a DT might be the bike for you. The only new folders you will find for less than 200 USD are wannabee-folding bikes you'll find in the bigger supermarkets and Wallmarts etc....
Even if you don't want to spend a lot of money and even if it's just for using a few months, you don't want to buy a horrible look-a-like. And, with all respect, a bike that does'nt ride confy will only make your 'health condition' worse. Go for a DT or spend a little more and look for a Dahon, surch the net for a good second-hand. Maybe we can help you finding one....


Cheers
Tom
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Old 03-23-06, 03:11 PM   #5
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Hi Eddie -

I recently went looking for a folder with some of the same priorities as you - affordability, comfort, and only needed it to fold small enough to fit into my car easily. I ended up getting a Downtube 2005 FS on ebay (with shipping it came to $236.50). Without a doubt the two strongest selling points for the Downtube are its price and comfort level. The FS, at least, is one of the most comfortable bikes I've ever ridden of any size - remarkable for one with 20" wheels. I gather the non-FS is also comfortable although I haven't compared the two (other posts on this forum do just that). After a couple hundred miles on the FS, I think it is a lot of bike for the money.

The weakest point for the DT, in my experience, is the final preparation before shipping. It took me a hundred miles of shake-down to get the gears and brakes adjusted properly and to track down various squeaks and creaks by lubing and tightening in the right places. If you aren't comfortable doing basic bike maintenance yourself, definitely factor in the cost of a visit to the Local Bike Shop for a tune-up. Good luck with your choice
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Old 03-23-06, 03:32 PM   #6
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If you find yourself still uncomfortable on your bike of choice i would really reccomend a sprung Brooks saddle like a Flyer, but maybe a second hand as they are not cheap and the break in can be painfull. But after the break in, sheer bliss for most people, even some peope with physical ailments (or so i have heard).
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