The difference a chain makes
I'm looking for a commuter bike to take me about 10->20km a day in good weather.
I tried a few Dahons earlier this week. I don't have a bias towards any particular brand -- I just started with the 'local shop' and their selection. I'm apartment-bound and close to public transit in case I'd like to avoid the rain -- storage and portability are my motivations for trying out a foldable. ...and there was a 'fun factor' that I got from hopping on the smaller wheeled bikes that wasn't there on full sized machines.
I found the rides a little too bumpy for my liking (Mariner, and especially Mu SL, the Cadenza to a lesser extent due to larger wheel size), so I tried out a Jetstream P8 (a model with suspension) -- it made for a very smooth ride.
The only downside (compared to a couple full-sized bikes I tried with mid-range shimano components) was that I could "feel" the chain while pedalling. I read a review elsewhere on the Jetstream P8 in stock configuration, and its performance after a rolhoff conversion. The writer also made comments about 'feeling every link in the chain' or something to that effect in its stock configuration.
This is likely not a problem specific to foldables, but... how much difference could swapping the chain alone make to the bike? Would it be possible to smooth out the ride with a few extra dollars spent on a chain and a bit of fiddling with the derailleur, or is it more likely a full component upgrade is required to smooth things out? Could it be that the chain just needs to be broken in a bit? Any riders out there that have faced similar issues?
Thanks in advance for any advice!