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  1. #1
    Leo
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    Reach Folding Bikes - Comments please...

    Hello,

    I'm considering a folder. My first wish is that it would be my only, general purpose city bike. The bike that interests me most is the Reach series (I'm leaning towards their road bike model) but they only sell out of NYC and I'm in Toronto Canada. Anybody in this formum have or tried this bike?

    Here is a link to their webpage...

    http://www.nycewheels.com/reach-folding-bikes.html

    Many thanks,

    Leo

  2. #2
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    I like the looks of the Reach, but I am a bit leery as they don't have much distribution yet. Plus, if I'm going to spend $1000 on a bike, I definitely want to test ride first.

    If folded size isn't that important, I recommend you look into a Xootr Swift -- decent price, solid ride, made for urban use. If you want a tiny fold, look into a Brompton. I'm sure at least one LBS in Toronto carries Bromptons....

  3. #3
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    Dunno anything about the bike, but there is an outfit in Toronto that carries them:

    http://ucycle.com

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    When the Reach first came out, I thought it was a hot looking bike. I haven't ridden it, but I think someone on these forums had a chance to, and posted about it. Try to find the old Reach thread. I still think it is a beautiful looking bike, but would make sure that the parts spec is worth the $1,500 price tag (are the parts at least Shimano 105?) and that you can get it to fit right. If you know all your vital measurements for bike fit, I don't see why you couldn't email one of the shops and ask them if it can be dialed in to your specifications. Lastly, I too would be a little hesitant to pull the trigger on a bike that cost that much if I can't test ride it first,
    Good luck with your decision, Juan

  5. #5
    Leo
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    Thanks all for your guidance and I'll look into all your tips before making a pick. Several weeks ago, I was actually in the bike store than noahj mentioned as a dealer in Reach bikes but didn't notice any models on the floor. This was before I was aware of the brand, so may have missed it? Don't know how I would have not noticed it because I'm also drawn by it's great looks. I now see a model on the outlets website, so it would be great to take it for a test ride, which I agree is issential before making a choice.

  6. #6
    rhm
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    I work a few blocks from the Nyce Wheels store, where I've test ridden Brompton and Swift. They're very nice people. If you want me to go test ride a Reach sometime, and tell you what I think, I can do that. Lemme know. --Rudi

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    The Birdy style front suspension does work. If you buy from a LBS and plan to pack it into luggage bring the luggage to the LBS and have them show you how it packs.

    It does not look like it folds and unfolds quick and clean. Folded it does not look like it is easy to carry, which is important for train bus stations.
    2000 Montague CX, I do not recommend it, but still ride it.
    Strida 3, I recommend it for rides < 10mi wo steep hills.
    2006 Rowbike 720 Sport, I recommend it as an exercise bike.
    1996 Birdy, Recommend.
    Wieleder CARiBIKE (folding), decent frame.

  8. #8
    Senior Member psykoocycle's Avatar
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    Last year I went to Urbane just to have a look at the reach (they at least had the MU SL by Dahon), but they do not carry them (at least a demonstrator model), I think the guy said he can order the reach, but not sure if they are willing to order one just for a demonstration.

    I hear a lot of good things about their customer service, maybe it worth a try having them order a demonstrator so you can take a spin.

    I'd be very interested in a review, they look good, and I expect a cadillac ride for the price they are asking...

  9. #9
    Car free since 1995 pm124's Avatar
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    It looks like a great bike, and has gotten a lot of good reviews, but it doesn't seem to fold into a small package. It would be best suited for car/air transport or closet storage rather than getting into businesses. It's made by Pacific, which makes the smaller Birdy as well. The quality of the engineering on the Birdy is outstanding.

    But if I wanted a big folder, I would only go with the Reach if suspension is desired. Otherwise, I'd shoot for a Bike Friday (a little more expensive for the same components) or a Swift (a lot less expensive, well built bike with only a slightly larger fold). Both of these latter bikes produce a rough ride, though.

  10. #10
    Leo
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    So I dropped into Urbane Cycle and they do in fact have the city model in stock. It was hanging on a wall, not prominently displayed, and so didn't get notice of it on my first visit. Due to rain, I didn't take it for a ride today but plan to so in the next week or so.

    The sales help did take it from the wall and so I got a chance to get a closer look at it. Compared to all the other small wheel folders, it had a much more appealing look in my opinion. We measure the wheel base and it was about 40" which is not that much different that my current city bike at 42.5". That said, I still felt a bit cramped in the reach for the handlebar but I'll await final judgment until the road test. The sales help also demonstrated its fold limitations. It was not all that compact and he explained that it was not designed so much as a folder, as a bike to be taken apart, so doesn't seem all that practical a bike for regular public transit commuting.

    At my last visit to the store, I test ridded the Dehon Cadenza and rather enjoyed the 5 or 10 minutes on it. At the moment, I'm tending toward favouring a more full wheel sized bike (such as the Cadenza), as the most practical all round bike, if I'm to stick to my object of having only a single bike.

    I'll try to post my thoughts on the Reach when I test ride it but in the meantime, if there are any other locals interested in the bike, you now know that it is available to try out at Urbane. And Rudi if you want to test ride it, I'd still appreciate your views on it. I'm sure most people on this formum are more knowledgeable about bikes in general than I am..

  11. #11
    jur
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    Did you read the lengthy review at their website?
    My folding bike photo essays www.dekter.net/

  12. #12
    Car free since 1995 pm124's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leo1903
    So I dropped into Urbane Cycle and they do in fact have the city model in stock. It was hanging on a wall, not prominently displayed, and so didn't get notice of it on my first visit. Due to rain, I didn't take it for a ride today but plan to so in the next week or so.

    The sales help did take it from the wall and so I got a chance to get a closer look at it. Compared to all the other small wheel folders, it had a much more appealing look in my opinion. We measure the wheel base and it was about 40" which is not that much different that my current city bike at 42.5". That said, I still felt a bit cramped in the reach for the handlebar but I'll await final judgment until the road test. The sales help also demonstrated its fold limitations. It was not all that compact and he explained that it was not designed so much as a folder, as a bike to be taken apart, so doesn't seem all that practical a bike for regular public transit commuting.

    At my last visit to the store, I test ridded the Dehon Cadenza and rather enjoyed the 5 or 10 minutes on it. At the moment, I'm tending toward favouring a more full wheel sized bike (such as the Cadenza), as the most practical all round bike, if I'm to stick to my object of having only a single bike.

    I'll try to post my thoughts on the Reach when I test ride it but in the meantime, if there are any other locals interested in the bike, you now know that it is available to try out at Urbane. And Rudi if you want to test ride it, I'd still appreciate your views on it. I'm sure most people on this formum are more knowledgeable about bikes in general than I am..
    If you really want a multi-mode commuter, the Cadenza definitely won't do it for you. But do give smaller wheeled folders a try. After all, the 51MPH speed record was set on 17" wheels. If you can dial it in, you'll be as happy as you would be on a road bike. (Or almost.)

    Here is the Reach distributed by Bianchi in Japan:

    http://blog.cyclingplus.co.uk/page/c...f_you_just_can

    Apparently, you *can* just get it. But you have to have Reach or Birdy on the label.

  13. #13
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    Looks like edinabike.com is now selling Pacific Cycles' product line, including the Reach bike.

  14. #14
    Senior Member wubrew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Leo1903
    So I dropped into Urbane Cycle and they do in fact have the city model in stock. It was hanging on a wall, not prominently displayed, and so didn't get notice of it on my first visit. Due to rain, I didn't take it for a ride today but plan to so in the next week or so.

    The sales help did take it from the wall and so I got a chance to get a closer look at it. Compared to all the other small wheel folders, it had a much more appealing look in my opinion. We measure the wheel base and it was about 40" which is not that much different that my current city bike at 42.5". That said, I still felt a bit cramped in the reach for the handlebar but I'll await final judgment until the road test. The sales help also demonstrated its fold limitations. It was not all that compact and he explained that it was not designed so much as a folder, as a bike to be taken apart, so doesn't seem all that practical a bike for regular public transit commuting.

    At my last visit to the store, I test ridded the Dehon Cadenza and rather enjoyed the 5 or 10 minutes on it. At the moment, I'm tending toward favouring a more full wheel sized bike (such as the Cadenza), as the most practical all round bike, if I'm to stick to my object of having only a single bike.

    I'll try to post my thoughts on the Reach when I test ride it but in the meantime, if there are any other locals interested in the bike, you now know that it is available to try out at Urbane. And Rudi if you want to test ride it, I'd still appreciate your views on it. I'm sure most people on this formum are more knowledgeable about bikes in general than I am..
    Reach

    http://www.rad-innovations.com/Reach/reach.html

    Definitely an alternative to Bike Friday. rad-innovation is also a distributor.

  15. #15
    Leo
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    Quote Originally Posted by pm124
    If you really want a multi-mode commuter, the Cadenza definitely won't do it for you. But do give smaller wheeled folders a try. After all, the 51MPH speed record was set on 17" wheels. If you can dial it in, you'll be as happy as you would be on a road bike. (Or almost.)

    Here is the Reach distributed by Bianchi in Japan:

    http://blog.cyclingplus.co.uk/page/c...f_you_just_can

    Apparently, you *can* just get it. But you have to have Reach or Birdy on the label.
    That's definately a pretty bike in the Bianchi colours! That's also interesting about the 51MHP speed record being set with 17" wheels. Why 17" wheels I wonder? Would you know of a link that would give research details?

  16. #16
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    I believe that record was set on a Moulton folding bike. Google Moulton folding bikes and check out the rich history. I can't find the link now, but there is a guy with the great site on folders with a huge section on Moultons and the records that were broken on them.
    Juan

  17. #17
    Leo
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    I finally got around to test ride the Reach city model which is the only model my LBS had available. There is also a road and off-road version available – see http://www.pacific-cycles.com. I felt that the city bikes reach to the upright handlebar system was a bit cramped and upright for my particular taste in comfort – the wheel base measurement came out at 40.5” which is 2” shorter than my current city bike. I prefer a longer reach, probably because I first started out riding a road style bike and must have become accustomed to that riding position. Their road bike version with dropped handlebars appears to (and is claimed), have a more generous reach. In fact, a review is posted on their website for their road model and the writer who is my height (5’10”), claims that he was comfortable with the ride but that a shorter rider might have difficulty with the extended reach because the models only come in one frame size. From the photo of their road model, the stem post also seems to have a forward extension arm of a few inches, so there may be some options available to get a shorter stem extension for shorter riders?

    The big downside however is that this bike is not really a folder but what’s classified as a “compact”. The back wheel folds under (as most folders do), once the quick release is disengaged at the rear shock. Second, the front wheel must actually be removed (via quick release), in order to compress the bike to its apparent limited folding capacity. Once the front wheel is removed, the handle bar is rotated backwards 180 degrees and the front forks then slide over the back wheel. That’s pretty well the limitations of its practical compactness, other that to lower the seat post and possibly the handlebar stem as well. There appears to be nothing mechanical in place, which would lock the bike in the folded state, without it wanting to unfold during transport. There is a way to lift the bike underarm and carry it without it unfolding but one is left with the possibility that it may come undone as one tries to change hands or from attempting to hold it together while seated during the normal stops and starts of a commute. Of course, one could probably create a make-shift strap (i.e.: with Velcro), to lock it in place and prevent this from happening but one is still left with what to do with the now detached front wheel – this complicates the commute considerably in my opinion. (Note: The company seems to offer no guidance or demos of how to fold it, so the above is the best that store rep. and myself could come up with. I’ll here invite the company or more a knowledgeable retailer to respond)

    The bike appears to be not compact enough for most commuter use but I am not writing it off just yet because my first objective was to find a very responsive, all purpose bike, which might pass as my only city bike with some folding capabilities. I felt that it could indeed pass in terms of overall comfort and responsiveness but am I really getting enough compactness to pass as a commuter at all?

    In Toronto it’s permissible to take even regular bikes on our transit system during non rush hours but I can’t help but feel that taking a standard bike on the system at these times is kind of intrusive to other riders. But this bike in it’s kind of “semi-compact” state may make me feel adequately comfortable enough to take it aboard during non-rush hour commuters (if I can ever figure out how to handle the detached front wheel), since even non-folders are permissible during these times anyways.

    So no decision yet, but I take the time to ponder the options and see if this is the route I want go…

  18. #18
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    How did you find the ride quality? Was the suspension effective?
    a life well lived is the best revenge

  19. #19
    Leo
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    Quote Originally Posted by yairi
    How did you find the ride quality? Was the suspension effective?
    The ride quality was very good and the suspension was quite effective at smoothing the bumps. As the back wheel section is fixed to the main frame via the quick release mechnismn there was still a solid feel, which is what I like. Although I didn't tackle any major hills, I tried an out of saddle accelleration in low gear and there was no "poggoing" on the front suspension. I only had one suspension type bike in the past and quickly got rid of it since it poggoed.

  20. #20
    Leo
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    For the time being I've decided to put the idea of getting a folder on hold. The main reason is that I did not find a folding bike which had great performance qualities, while also having the ability to quickly fold down compact.

    Another reason is that for the last couple of days, I tried a system recently implemented on our public transit buses to accommodate bikes and found that it worked very well! I believe the external mounted bikes racks on buses, are just in an experimental stage on selected routes but if ever implemented city wide, I could get by with just a single general purpose city bike. I realize that for most people who desire or have folders, that bike racks on buses in their towns probably would be sufficient for their needs but for me it may do the trick.

    Here is a link to our transits systems bike rack guide - if anyone is interested:
    http://www.toronto.ca/ttc/bike_racks.htm

    Leo

  21. #21
    Senior Member psykoocycle's Avatar
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    thanks for the review... saw the fold on website, by no means is it compact... went into Urbane last week to get chainrings for the downtube... and saw the same city reach you must have test rode... (tempted, but had to get back home)...

    I've ridden around the city with the downtube, and took it in the subway system comfortably (I had to get a bungee cord to roll it around, then I just lift through the gate and stairs). I haven't tried the bus yet...

    any creaks detected while you rode?? comparable to a roadie in feel?

  22. #22
    Leo
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    I coundn't really say that it was comparable to a regualr road bike but of the folders that I tried it was probably one of the best of the lot. It had a solid ride (no creaks) and was even comparable to the Moulten that I tried out at Curbside Cycle! I don't think that Urbane had much interest from prospective buyers for the Reach model they have in stock. One of the sales help suggested that I contact the buyer of the shop and that he may give me a special deal on it but so far I've not followed up.

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