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Old 07-25-07, 01:08 PM   #1
JosephLMonti
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Which components on Dahon are non-standard

I've heard people say that Dahon uses proprietary componentry...which parts exactly fall into this category?
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Old 07-25-07, 01:18 PM   #2
Bacciagalupe
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Handlepost is the big one. They also change that bit every now and then, so if it breaks you might have some slight issues replacing it.

The 7-speed bikes have a proprietary derailleur, and cannot be swapped out.

IIRC there are a couple of other little bits that are proprietary, not sure which ones though. But in general, I would regard any Dahon as a PITA to upgrade or, more than 5 years after purchase, repair.
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Old 07-25-07, 01:19 PM   #3
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Off the top of my head ...

The front hubs are an odd size ... (74 mm?)

Some of the performance bikes have low spoke counts too so I suppose the the rims could be considered hard to get.

I forget what the seatpost diameter is ... perhaps something like 34 mm.

Some Dahon saddles/seatposts use a different mounting system. (IDG?) Although you can find those here and there on the internet.

-G
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Old 07-25-07, 03:04 PM   #4
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Other proprietary parts include:

- the frame latch and latch mechanism
- the handlebar latches (esp. that delrin block)
- integrated headsets coupled with internally threaded forks (a silly design forced upon many of their current models)
- magnetic clips which hold the bike closed

Last edited by spambait11; 07-25-07 at 03:09 PM.
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Old 07-25-07, 03:08 PM   #5
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Forks and handlepost attachment - they use an inside threaded fork instead of a star-nut setup.
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Old 07-25-07, 03:13 PM   #6
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IDG does suck -- not because it's a bad idea, but because there are few saddles that fit it.

But I don't think they're using IDG as much as they used to.
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Old 07-25-07, 05:53 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spambait11 View Post
Other proprietary parts include:

- integrated headsets (...)
Just to clarify, using Chris King terminology, (Integrated Headsets Explained - PDF) the Dahon headsets would actually be classified as "internal" or "semi-integrated" headsets. They would not be classified as "integrated".

To quote Chris King,
"The key difference between integrated and internal is that the bearings do not touch the frame with an internal headset, they are contained either by a cup or an aluminum or plastic shim assembly which is pressed into the headtube."

All the recent Dahon 20" models that I am aware of use either steel or aluminum cups for the bearings.

Best bet for the least proprietary Dahon might be a Speed P8. No internal gear hubs, no fancy wheels, no suspension, nice steel frame and steel fork.

On the P8 models we own (Speed + Helios), the brake levers are bog standard Avid's, and derailleurs + shifters are standard SRAM kit. Cassette/BB/cranks/chain all seem to be pretty standard stuff. If one is really paranoid about parts availability 5 years down the road, one could buy some extra components now.. about $100 will get you:
- lower handlepost section = $50
- seatpost (telescoping) = $22
- front wheel with 74mm hub (Dahon Kinetix Comp) = $30

Everything else beyond the frame/fork should be fairly easy to deal with. The most non-standard is probably the 74mm hub, there's not an awful lot of options that I have found. It seems you have Dahon, Pantour, American Classic and Rolf who make/made a 74mm hub in one guise or another. It is possible to go to 100mm hub, it just means you need a model with a steel fork and you need it cold-set (i.e. spread) to match. Some folks say don't do it, some people have done it without problems. You make up your own mind. (And get a professional to do it... http://sheldonbrown.com/frame-spacing.html)

BTW, it's "SDG" (speed defies gravity) not IDG. Yes Dahon is moving away from SDG it seems.
2008 should see introduction of the Kore seatposts that will take I-Beam or with a Kore adapter, standard railed saddles. However, you can purchase posts today that will take a standard saddle, should you choose a model that has I-Beam by default.

Last edited by 4cmd3; 07-25-07 at 05:58 PM.
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Old 07-25-07, 06:03 PM   #8
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Note that the Neos derailleur is only on the D7 bikes. The 8 and 9 speed models have more conventional SRAM derailleurs this year, Shimano in the past.

Theoretically, an adapter claw, like the one near the bottom of this page, might be used to mount any rear derailleur. The bolt is supposed to fit through the back of the axle slot without the need to drill an extra hole. However, I seriously doubt whether this would work on one of the D7 bikes, and I'm not recommending it. From the picture on this page, it looks like the axle slot might be too short.
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Old 07-25-07, 09:04 PM   #9
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Wow! I'm astonished at the amount of proprietary parts used on Dahons. I don't own Dahons and this is one of the reasons.

Can anyone speculates as to why so many of their parts have to be proprietary? Is it just for the obvious mercenary reasons, or there some more rational logic?
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Old 07-25-07, 10:15 PM   #10
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I think they do it for performance reasons:
Narrow front hub = smaller fold
funny stem w/ internally threaded fork = stiffer handlepost
34mm seatpost = stiffer
funny derailer = more ground clearance
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Old 07-25-07, 10:43 PM   #11
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I think it's to saturate the market with innovations so that they can keep fresh patents - contra Brompton.

Problem is that they don't know what works well (i.e. long-term reliability) and what doesn't before releasing their stuff en masse.
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