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  1. #26
    New usename ThorUSA brakemeister's Avatar
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    hey guys slow down ......

    I would have lotsa answers why this and that , some well founded, some just common sense.(some even just guesses ) But it doesnt help the newbie one bit. It will just confuse them and we all loose them as a future folder fanatic.

    We all need ( me included) to slow down. Its is a fact that quite a few of us are

    TOTALLY CRAZY ABOUT FOLDERS

    no matter what the reasons, we are passionate about those small wheeled wonders.
    The newbies dont know that , they think we are NUTS ... :-)

    Peace !


    thor

  2. #27
    Senior Member Fear&Trembling's Avatar
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    (but the 18" wheels would kill me with no tire choices)

    Wav, surely some mistake, I thought you were railing against hyperbole!

    The following road tyres are available through Schwalbe: Marathon, Marathon Racer and Stelvio. Maxxis also produce an ERTO 355 tyre, but it feels lethargic and heavy on the open road.

    In my opinion, the best compromise tyre in the 355 size is the Marathon Racer – relatively fast and just wide enough (40mm) to absorb minor bumps and stones, but obviously not as plush as Big Apples or Ringworms in the 406 size.

    Unquestionably, the choices of tyre for the Birdy are poor (but the problem was even more acute a few years back), one can only hope that the range will expand in the next year or so. For what it’s worth, R and M should really have switched to 406 or 349 wheels when they redesigned the bikes in 2005. Not only because of the scarcity of tyres, but also due to the dearth of rims available in this eccentric size…


    uprightbent

    The above comments not withstanding, it might be worth considering the hub-geared Birdy (known as the "City"). It does have smaller wheels than you specify, but it still might be worth looking into - particularly if you fly to Europe regularly. The cost is steep though.
    Last edited by Fear&Trembling; 03-30-06 at 12:45 AM.

  3. #28
    Banned. folder fanatic's Avatar
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    Unlike many of you, I never get tired of the endless questions and attention that I get when I am in public with one of the folders. Way has numerous times worried more about resale value than the true value of bikes especially folders. He is very specific about "the Boardwalk is a throwaway bike." He, and to be fair others sprinkled in this and other forums, always refer to cycling as a "sport." That is not entirely accurate. It is mainly an alternative or in conjuction to, other forms of transport or a means of exercise intergrated within a person's healthy more balanced lifestyle. Nothing more. Sport is for performance hounds like Lance. Cycling is for everyone else. Throwaway is for wasteful people like my program manager sister who has millions of dollars to toss at communication satellites that tumble out of the sky. I have only a few meager dollars to work with and to best as I can educate and assist the hidden desparate masses as well as the former (now poor) members of the US middle class. Bikes like the Dahon Boardwalk and even the Brompton C type is highly valued and sometimes even used by these people. This is the type of person I was motivated to assist.
    Last edited by folder fanatic; 03-30-06 at 12:48 PM.

  4. #29
    Folding bike junkie! Wavshrdr's Avatar
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    FF - I appreciate your points. I only worry about resale value on bikes that are expensive. To me a $200 folder is a throw away bike. No offense intended but it isn't worth the hassle of trying to resell it. I will just donate it to someone else who can use it when I am done with it.

    As for the cycling being a sport, it is! It is recognized as a sport by the Olympic Committee. We have cycling competitions but I haven't ever seen a competition for commuting (though I imagine they have had one somewhere). Unless you are making money from it, then it is not your job, profession or source of income. It may be a form of transportation but I use it for more than just commuting, therefore it is a sport to me. We don't get any tax breaks on buying a bicycle like you do in the UK. As a result any money that I spend is totally subsidized out of my pocket and I receive NO TAX benefit from it.

    Many Americans live further from their places of employment than do most Europeans. We don't have our fuel taxed at a rate 3-5 times higher than the actual cost of the fuel like Europe does. That is why fuel costs $5-7/gal in Europe vs. the $2/gal in the US. It is all insipid taxes and a way to control people's behavior without being too obvious about it.

    The Brompton C type is NOT a throwaway in my book. As a result I am more cautious about the money I spend on it. It may be the cheapest Brommie but it is far more expensive than the average folder purchased in the US.

    Bicycling could never be my main form of transportation where I live. I incorporate it as much as possible. I have 3 kids and pets. There is no easy way to shuttle them around in the climate I have here. I make use of our bikes as much as possible but when it is -30C I am not getting my butt on a bicycle and riding anywhere. I pretty much draw the line at -15C. Not to mention the snow, ice and winds we have in the winter. It can never be my main source of transportation. I am a pretty avid cyclist but that just becomes insane to ride in that type of weather.

    Just because I term a bike a throwaway doesn't mean it is a BAD bike. It is obviously low spec and it has its uses. I would ride it where I wouldn't want to risk a more expensive folder. Let's be real here. A basic Boardwalk has a crappy seat, single speed, mediocre tires and a non-adjustable handlebar stem. If you live in Florida and are between 5'8" and 6"1" its not going to be a terrible fit. If you are shorter or taller than then the bars are going to bug you. So next thing you know you are off buying the telescopic handlebar option. Drop another $40-50 on the bike and the price starts creeping up. Decide you want more gears and next thing you know it you have $350 invested in it. I don't buy a bike with the thought I am going to immediately sell it but I do factor in its future value so I can figure the TCO (total cost of ownership). Based on the my C type Bromptons are some of the cheaper bikes to own that I've experienced. DTs will probably have the worst resale value but I didn't pay much for them either so it is a wash. A Boardwalk may be all some people ever need or want and that is wonderful. A Boardwalk is not a terrible bike and it beats walking.

    I try and bike everyday. I try to live a healthy lifestyle and encourage my children to do it as well. Cycling is just one aspect of that.

  5. #30
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    Well... the Giant Halfway has apparently not changed since its inception (2001?). But talk about non-standard! OTOH hubs can be serviced. So can all the other components that have moving parts. I daresay one will find a Dahon dealer in most any part of the world where it is possible to ride a bicycle, especially one that folds. It was actually a Dahon Speed 8 that I had smashed the piggy bank to purchase. As fate would have it the only Speed 8 was in a warehouse and while waiting to see how long it would take to bring to NY and prep it they caught my eye, the Halfway twins. Lounging on the sales floor looking way unattainable. When I sidled over and looked at the price I couldn't believe it. It, they, looked like they would cost twice the asking. I had joined this forum a week or so before the trip to the LBS. I knew about Swift, Brompton, Bike Friday, Roo, others and of course Dahon. In an entire week of lurking there was not so much as a whisper of the names Giant or 1/2way. I wanted to go back and do days of painstaking comparisons but the salesman said I didn't have time to waffle around "when we prep them and put them on the floor they go". I believed him. So I bit. Broke up the pair, her sister was gone the next time I went back a day or three later. I have my issues with 'things' about the 1/2way but all in all I suspect I could have done worse. Internal hubs can be as much as 14% innefficient in some gears and even 20% in others depending on brand. That gave me pause. Then there is the price once you start getting into more gears than 5. You guys have way more money than me to discuss Bromptons and Bike Friday's with a straight face. If I spend more than $1000 on a folder it will be fully suspended like a Jetstream.

    H

  6. #31
    Banned. folder fanatic's Avatar
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    Wavshrdr, I am actually located in Southern California-but my family originated in Europe. We are, how you say, more prudently financially orientated in our outlook. Most bikes (except department store ones) are cherished, carefully maintained, and passed through the generations. They are teaching tools for the young in our family and my clients in my profession in social work. Bike commuting-even with the mostly beautiful weather here-is compared to commiting suicide with the craziness on the roadways here. I still use them as back up to unstable transportation (2 transit strikes in three years and roller coaster gas prices) whenever I need to. It may not be the best solution especially with Los Angeles being so spread out or as in your case the extreme weather, but at least it is an option. Just try walking anywhere.

    Thank you for your response.

  7. #32
    Senior Member Heraclitus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by folder fanatic
    Bike commuting-even with the mostly beautiful weather here-is compared to commiting suicide with the craziness on the roadways here. I still use them as back up to unstable transportation (2 transit strikes in three years and roller coaster gas prices) whenever I need to. It may not be the best solution especially with Los Angeles being so spread out or as in your case the extreme weather, but at least it is an option. Just try walking anywhere.

    Thank you for your response.
    I just gotta say: I live in LA too, and I make a practice of riding a bike if time allows and it doesn't matter if I arrive a little sweaty. I commute by bike 8.5 miles 1-2 times per week, but get most of my riding done on weekends. I love it when I can get places faster and with less frustration by bike than I would in a car or on a bus.

    Wish me luck, I have logged thousands of miles and I haven't gone down yet.
    Nothing endures but change.

  8. #33
    Is this your card? woofman's Avatar
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    That is one very sweet looking Swift you built, Wav. Can you tell me who makes the bar end mirror?

  9. #34
    Folding bike junkie! Wavshrdr's Avatar
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    @Woofman - thanks for the props. I spent some time planning it out and I didn't want another "me too" clone of all the other Swifts so I took the path never traveled before instead. Anyway the mirrors are by Zefal. I think they call them the Doobacks or something like that. They come in both a right and left versions. I bought like 10 of the darn things and put them all my bikes except the drop bar ones and my 'bent. GREAT mirror as the have a wide view and fold up so they don't get smashed when folding the bike or parking in a narrow space.

  10. #35
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    downtubes

    are downtubes sold in bike stores or just online? thanks

  11. #36
    Folding bike junkie! Wavshrdr's Avatar
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    Only online at the moment but I think Phil@ Sante Fe bikes was maybe going to be stocking them. Ask him directly mabye. He is a nice guy and really enthustiastic about folders.

  12. #37
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    There are many non-standard parts on my 05 Jetstream XP that are going to sunset when what's available at Thor dries up and it is a good, valid criticism that this practice is worrisome. For instance:

    The headsets have gone internal on the 06 models, leaving my threaded fork a non-standard part.
    The Handlepost has been replaced by a new design that is incompatible with the 05 and this is a critical wear part (meaning, if it goes and you can't get another, the bike is history).
    The Carbonlite flat bar is gone and it's a non-standard 26.0
    The frame hinge handle and hinge pin set is no more. Try finding any of these parts at your LBS. Same with the handlepost hinge assembly.
    The rear triangle and its hinge assembly, actually, the whole frame is propietary and unavailable. Bend it and it's done.

    I do love my XP but support for any folding bike is shaky. For one that's been discontinued, it's suspect.

    DG1

  13. #38
    New usename ThorUSA brakemeister's Avatar
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    lol
    there is no planned obsolence here..... just improvement. Dahon tries to make every bike and consequently every part better. It simply is not fair to call that negative....

    I am the first one to admit that a couple parts where hard to find, but folks like Gaerlan always had a pretty good supply. The ThorUSA supply has no plans of drying up, quite the opposite actually.lol
    I do sell some parts which are not even on the website , but new ( and old ) things are added almost daily ( lol..... lets say weekly )
    lets look at some of the specifics

    I do have a threaded 05 Jetstream fork in stock, any other threaded fork will work as well , might not be a suspended one, but even them are available.
    Frame , well every frame no matter what brand is propiarty , but when you sign in on the Dahon page you have a lifetime warranty. Dahon is pretty good to take care of frame breakage. And if they do not have an older frame than they replace it with a current one... That is pretty standard in the bike biz.
    I have not heard about any hinge failure, but that falls in the above warranty statement.

    With Dahon you have a plethora of things in your favour . Not necessary in this order :
    Importer network around the world
    Dealer Network
    Online Specialists
    Dahon own bulletin board
    Dahon USA where you can call and they will usually help

    Thats all Dahon specific .... but even if you post a problem here .....there are a bunch of people willing and eager to help .....

    Again, I know what you are saying and in the past the parts supply was a little behind , no doubt !
    But you cannot blame a manufacturer trying very hard to improve their products.

    thor

    XP is not discontinued, just not sold in the US they make them for other countries as we speak.

  14. #39
    New usename ThorUSA brakemeister's Avatar
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    forgot .. I do have a flat carbon bar in stock as well

    lol
    thor

  15. #40
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    Thor, I work for a magazine that reviews products in the marketplace. I bought my bike from you and named you specifically to let others know that you are the Dahon resource I'd look to for unavailable parts. Your answer to my post takes what I've said into another context, namely that of negative trolling and that's not what I meant when I wrote it. You see, I came across this post lambasting a guy for bringing up, as a valid concern, the blindingly fast turnover of Dahon designs and the scarce availability of proprietary parts for bikes that aren't very old. The ensuing argument about what was actually proprietary bothered me because both sides were talking hubs, which you can source direct from American Classic, and missed listing almost every other unique part (any of you ever see another bike that uses a 34.8(?) seatpost?). Magazine weenie that I am, I took on the task,.

    Fact of the matter is that Dahon is constantly improving the line and I agree that this is a good thing, but only for the most part. A valid criticism could be made that designs in need of such dramatic improvements over such short timespans should be called prototypes.

    As I said, I'm thrilled with my bike and actively participate in the discussions on the Dahon forums with suggestions on improving the design. I'm pleased that Josh takes the time to listen and that he's active in implementing those very suggestions. It's great customer relations and makes good sense for the customer that plans to follow the upgrade path.

    Still, this does not change the validity of what you call the 'negative' view. Both sides make points worthy of careful consideration.

    DG1

  16. #41
    New usename ThorUSA brakemeister's Avatar
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    true
    I might have come over a little too aggressive
    my style of writing ( second language after all) does that sometimes. Didnt want to slam anybody.
    As they are indeed valid points....

    one problem why i probably came over a little harsh is that we lately hear from a few that Dahon has too many unavailbale parts or propierty parts which are hard to find.

    Dahon knows that and has (in the background) improved parts business, they still have a long way to go.

    My concern is that a newbie who asks a simple question gets confronted with this. The newbie wants a good functioning bike, he is usually not interested in upgrading to a Schlumpf or to a handlebar which allows for a lower stance , cause somebody pulls 100 mile days constantly, needs it... nothing wrong with that..... hard to explain what I am trying to say ...

    In my opinion its better to have better designed propriaty parts which work .......than low cost off the shelf stuff which has to be replaced ( albeit easier ) from even the nooby rider.

    Than comes the next point.... I live in the sticks,, no bike shop for 100 miles around me ( well one who sells lawntools and a few bikes I have never heard off) Even the bigger bike shops do not have "regular" replacement parts most of the time...... you guys in the big cities do have it much nicer, as you have a plethora of shops around...here the parts on the bike better perform otherwise you are out of luck.

    as for "field"testing of new products .... hmmmm..... I understand the time table/ timeframe of Dahon. Behind the scene we are talking 07 ( the program basically stanbds ready )and even 08 bikes now .... the bikes which will arrive this week actually have been tested from various folks throughout 05 starting at the end of 04. Dahon is probably one of the very few bike companies I know, who really puts every part and every combination through the wringer, for a very long time.... That is NOT the industry standard . Quite a few of really big names have a product engineer/ Purchase guy with a swollen head ( I am the KING of spec ) who base their selection on their own ego and have a brand new product on the streets without as much as trying it out if it fits on the bike... that is real scary .... that doesnt exclude some parts folks either, I could tell you about things which would make all our backhair stand straight up .....

    anyhow enuff rant
    peace
    thor

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