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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 03-29-07, 01:53 PM   #1
disco2000
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how often do you actually fold your bike?

I commute on a road bike every day, but not on a folder. I've noticed, however, that owners of folding bikes are all really obsessed (in a good way) about their bikes, and, to be honest, I don't really get the whole thing at all. How often do you actually encounter situations where you can't lock up somewhere and need to be able to fold your bike? Is it basically a specialty item for people who fly or take trains often? Sorry if this sounds like a stupid question, I know it must come off as extremely naive here, but I'm just curious!
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Old 03-29-07, 02:01 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disco2000
I commute on a road bike every day, but not on a folder. I've noticed, however, that owners of folding bikes are all really obsessed (in a good way) about their bikes, and, to be honest, I don't really get the whole thing at all. How often do you actually encounter situations where you can't lock up somewhere and need to be able to fold your bike? Is it basically a specialty item for people who fly or take trains often? Sorry if this sounds like a stupid question, I know it must come off as extremely naive here, but I'm just curious!

I live on a boat and either keep my bike folded in my car or folded on the boat. A full sized bike wouldn't work. The full size bike that I still have spends it's life in my storage unit across town.

It's also pretty cool to go riding with friends on their "normal bikes" and be able to keep up with them on my itty bitty wheels...
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Old 03-29-07, 02:01 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disco2000
I commute on a road bike every day, but not on a folder. I've noticed, however, that owners of folding bikes are all really obsessed (in a good way) about their bikes, and, to be honest, I don't really get the whole thing at all. How often do you actually encounter situations where you can't lock up somewhere and need to be able to fold your bike? Is it basically a specialty item for people who fly or take trains often? Sorry if this sounds like a stupid question, I know it must come off as extremely naive here, but I'm just curious!
I would think that there are more people who commute by train everyday than by road bike every day. So which is more of a specialty item? A product for the larger group or a product for the smaller group?

Furthermore, do you actually encounter situations where you can't fold your bike to take with you and you need to be able to lock it? After all, locking isn't a very effective method of preventing theft: http://youtube.com/watch?v=5TNTq3nhuh0

Last edited by makeinu; 03-29-07 at 02:11 PM.
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Old 03-29-07, 02:06 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by makeinu
I would think that there are more people who commute by train everyday than by road bike every day. So which is more of a specialty item? A product for the larger group or a product for the smaller group?
Touche!
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Old 03-29-07, 02:29 PM   #5
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I fold 3-4 times per day and don't own a lock.
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Old 03-29-07, 02:43 PM   #6
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I'm looking to purchase 3 of them so my family and I can take them on plane trip vacations. Back in the day you could box up your bike and airlines charged $20-$30 extra. Now they charge $100+. I'd rather buy folders and check-in as free luggage than pay those rates to airlines.
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Old 03-29-07, 02:45 PM   #7
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cool, i get it now, thanks. carry on...
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Old 03-29-07, 02:49 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by disco2000
I commute on a road bike every day, but not on a folder. I've noticed, however, that owners of folding bikes are all really obsessed (in a good way) about their bikes, and, to be honest, I don't really get the whole thing at all. How often do you actually encounter situations where you can't lock up somewhere and need to be able to fold your bike? Is it basically a specialty item for people who fly or take trains often? Sorry if this sounds like a stupid question, I know it must come off as extremely naive here, but I'm just curious!
It's not a stupid question at all. I bought all my folding bikes for that specific abilty since I live in a very urban, high crime area. Locks simply don't cut it anymore. I only own 1 non folding bike. And that is "retired" and not used much anymore.
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Old 03-29-07, 02:50 PM   #9
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If you leave your bike outside locked it is only a matter of time before it's away with the fairies.
If it's folded up under your desk/In your understairs cupboard/under the restaurant table it's suddenly quite a lot safer from those that would have you bikeless. For some this is the real USP of a folder. You can take it with you anywhere and not leave it tied to a post like that goat in Jurassic park.

Others like me just have them to be different. My Raleigh has a piss-poor fold.
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Old 03-29-07, 03:10 PM   #10
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I fold my bike every day I ride into work. Fold it up, put it in a bag and walk into the office. Plus, due to space problems in my apartment, I leave it folded at home too.
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Old 03-29-07, 03:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LittlePixel
You can take it with you anywhere and not leave it tied to a post like that goat in Jurassic park.

LOL
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Old 03-29-07, 03:31 PM   #12
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I am really lazy, I fold as little as possible....only when I have to which is not very often.
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Old 03-29-07, 03:42 PM   #13
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I actually never thought about the security issue, as I work in a building with a garage on the ground floor, and the guys there keep a good eye on things for me. That and ALWAYS locking securely with a pretty inconspicuous looking bike has been fine so far (knock on wood...), although I'd never leave it out overnight. If circumstances are different at my next job, though, a folder might actually be perfect. Isn't there some saying about the price of piece of mind or something?
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Old 03-29-07, 06:03 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pm124
I fold 3-4 times per day and don't own a lock.
Wow.. I know the whole purpose of the folder is to fold it.. but wont it eventually wear out the life of the folding nuts etc...?
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Old 03-29-07, 06:44 PM   #15
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I picked up my current folding bike (Swift) to avoid airline fees and sneak it onto trains when it otherwise bikes are verboten. It turns out I like the simplicity (only one front chainring) and the handling (snappy and fast acceleration). I did a century on my Swift without major problems, although I may switch to 700c for future centuries as the 20" wheels are a little too harsh for that distance.

That said, I rarely fold my Swift. It's not usually necessary, but it's good to know it's there if I need it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by fireworkz
Wow.. I know the whole purpose of the folder is to fold it.. but wont it eventually wear out the life of the folding nuts etc...?
Nope

If it's a hinge (most folding bikes), all the parts are metal. Other components will wear out long before the hinges. If it's a QR like a Swift, no problem, nothing really to wear out.
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Old 03-29-07, 08:01 PM   #16
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I'll fold my Raleigh Twenty occasionally to put it in my car. It's too cumbersome to bring inside most places other than my home.

My Bike Fridays I consider to be mostly suitcase bikes, to bring on airplanes. I have folded them on occasion to bring inside, and again, to carry in a car. I generally ride my BF Pocket Tourist to work, but I have plenty of space to store even a non-folder inside, in a locked building with a fence around it, and few visitors.

My Dahon Curve folds easily; I'm folding and unfolding it all the time. It's my new bike for errands where I might otherwise have to leave a bike outside.
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