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  1. #1
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    REI's Novara Buzz Fly By - folding bike (by Dahon)

    I found this on the Bike Hugger blog....

    They have been covering the 2008 lineup of REI's Novara brand in their weekly vids.
    I'm usually not that excited about Novara bikes, but it looks they partnered with Dahon on one of their frames.

    Very interesting... if this doesn't tell you that folding bikes are finally breaking in the US market, I don't know what does.

    Post:
    http://bikehugger.com/2007/07/novara_buzz_fly_by.htm

    Vid:
    http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...63386737&hl=en

  2. #2
    Professional Fuss-Budget Bacciagalupe's Avatar
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    Ehh, there's quite a few rebranded Dahons out there, this is hardly a big deal. IIRC Trek dropped its (Dahon-made) folding bike last year, which few took as a death knell for folders.

    Folding bikes are a niche product, and will stay a niche product for a long time. The compromises simply are not worth the conveniences for most cyclists.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    This was before I moved to the US, so I might be wrong - but from snippets I've read here and there, didn't REI used to distribute one of the basic Birdy bikes?
    ICE B1
    Riese & Müller Birdy Silver
    Raleigh Gran Prix

    Random & infrequent updates about my Birdy folding bike (and the Swift I used to have): http://yangmusa.blogspot.com/

  4. #4
    Seņor Mambo
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    Dahon is very smart to partner up with REI; this move could push folding bikes mainstream big time as REI has now established themselves as the Costco of the outdoor world. By the way, that BS about working with Dahon should be edited out in the video: the only work REI did on that bike was to give it a blue paint color with ugly graphics. I see Dahon also sells through Performance, but I don't see Performance really pushing the brand. REI will most likely do a better job since they put it under their own name. It will be interesting to see what REI sells them for and whether Dahon can meet the demand.

    REI used to sell the Birdy Green and Silver when it was distributed through Burley. When Burley stopped distributing, REI stopped selling - ca. 1999.

  5. #5
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yangmusa View Post
    This was before I moved to the US, so I might be wrong - but from snippets I've read here and there, didn't REI used to distribute one of the basic Birdy bikes?
    Yep.

    EDIT: Posted before I saw SB's post.

  6. #6
    BF Risk Manager
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    I have looked only at the blog post, not the video, but it looks like a modified Mu XL.
    Regards, MillCreek
    Snohomish County, Washington USA

  7. #7
    Amazing, but true...
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    REI is hardly costco, but they do have a folding biek coming out. a pump in the seatpost?! how cool?!

  8. #8
    hubgears BB49's Avatar
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    I have seen the 2008 Novara catalog at a REI store. The Buzz FlyBy is coming out in January 2008. It is a Dahon MU XL without the front hub dynamo, lights, rear rack, and suspension seatpost. It is 27.4 lbs, about 3 lbs lighter than the XL. No price given, but it could be $200 cheaper than the $900 MU XL.

  9. #9
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    I heard retail will be $599.

  10. #10
    ♋ ☮♂ ☭ ☯ -=(8)=-'s Avatar
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    Hmmmmmm.........A comment about a cracked Dahon frame
    in the 'comments' section........

  11. #11
    Folder
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    Yeah, that's my comment about the cracked frame.

    Unfortunately, with cheaper mass-produced bikes, these things happen. (See current thread about a Downtube failure). While one should expect the quality to be good, sometimes things just go wrong.

    In those cases, I'd rather deal with a local REI store than with the enigmatic Dahon folks in Southern California.

    That was the point of the comment - having REI involved would be a drastic improvement in my overall Dahon experience.

  12. #12
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    Slightly off-topic but is there any members here who have bought bikes from Rei and experienced their service? One of the LBS I visited basically stated Rei is not a good place to shop for bicycle. I have no way of knowing how true that statement is. I'm still shopping for folding bike and I would not mind buying Buzz Flyby.

  13. #13
    hubgears BB49's Avatar
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    $600 would be a very good deal. I have heard only good things about REI bike shops.

  14. #14
    Oldie but newbie
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    +1 on REI as a seller. I bought a bike there a few years ago and they were very helpful, changed some things out as requested, and were great to deal with. They also normally have an excellent return policy, though I have never needed it.

    Hopefully Dahon is ready to back them up and have any non-standard parts readily available to them, which I think they will. It should be a great way for Dahon to get their bikes and technology in front of more people.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Fibber's Avatar
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    I just got a Dahon Speed D7, and think the deraillure mounting and action is quite slick. Tucked in forward of the dropouts keeps in inboard and high. But has anybody been bothered by the sound and feel of cross-chaining? Given the short wheelbase of the bike, I guess it is unavoidable but sure sounds like it is taking a toll when in the lowest gears.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Otto Rax View Post
    REI is hardly costco, but they do have a folding biek coming out. a pump in the seatpost?! how cool?!
    Thats Dahon's Seatpost Pump:
    http://www.dahon.com/technology/component/zorin.htm

  17. #17
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    Dahon hooking up with REI is very smart. Lots of people will see the bike that would never otherwise be exposed to a folder. Even if a only a small % of those people buy a folder it will still be a good thing.

    Now it just depends how REI decides to market and display this bike. It will be interesting to follow this.
    safe riding - Vik
    VikApproved

  18. #18
    Senior Member Fibber's Avatar
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    Any exposure is a good thing at this point. In my travels the past few weeks I visited a Performance Bicycle in Mountain View (silicon valley), CA, and found out that while they sell Dahon on their web site, they do not carry them in their stores! Richardson Bike Mart (North Dallas suburb), one of the largest (sq ft) shops in the nation relegates a few dust covered folders to the far back dark corner. None of the shops in my area carry them.

  19. #19
    hubgears BB49's Avatar
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    The Fly-By is now on the REI website, priced at $599.
    The Dahon 2008 catalog shows what seems to be the same bike, the MU XL Sport, price unknown. Dahon appears to be dropping the fully loaded and 3 lb heavier $900 MU XL and offering the hub generator and rear rack as options.

  20. #20
    Senior Member
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    20% off most REI stuff including bikes, for members, along with dividend, through March. That makes it $479.

  21. #21
    Senior Member
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  22. #22
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    alright, so what are the differences between the Mu XL Sport for $1000 and the Fly-By for $480-600? There's got to be SOMETHING to make that price difference, right?

  23. #23
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    From what I've been able to determine from pictures/specs...

    Seatpost:
    FlyBy = pump post, XL Sport = Kore

    Saddle
    FlyBy = BioLogic AirFlo , XL Sport = Kore

    Grips:
    FlyBy = Biologic, XL Sport= Ergon

    Latch mechanism:
    FlyBy = 2005-2007 style, XL Sport= 2008 style

    Tires:
    FlyBy = Schwalbe Marathon (Racer?), XL Sport = Schwalbe Kojak

    pedals:
    FlyBy: fixed folding plastic , XL Sport = MKS EZY quick release pedals

    extra:
    FlyBy = carry bag, XL Sport = ??

    paint:
    FlyBy = neato logo-heavy paintjob, XL Sport = boring gunmetal

    handlebar:
    the Dahon XL Sport has a "7050 aluminum, double-butted" flatbar, whereas the FlyBy MAY have something cheaper/heavier/more generic.

    gearhub:
    Dahon is calling theirs the "Dahon Special Edition Shimano Premium Nexus 8"
    apparently that version might be like 200g lighter than the normal one?
    (according to a post I saw here or on the dahon.com forums...)

    chain:
    FlyBy: KMC Z410, XL Sport = KMC Z610RB (RB = rustbuster)

    Brakes and levers seem the same.

    I think Dahon stiffened up the handlepost for 2008, but I bet the FlyBy will have the 2007 equivalent?

    WEIGHT:
    FlyBy = 27.3 lbs, XL Sport = 26.4 lbs

    I think all around the FlyBy specs will be just slightly lower
    e.g. FlyBy front hub = "Formula" aluminum, XL Sport = Kinetix Neutron Pro

    This in no way detracts from the FlyBy still being a perfectly fine bicycle.
    It got a good little blurb from Bicycling magazine in this month's edition.
    Seems like a more affordable way for someone to get into a nice Mu frame.
    (or buy the FlyBy and upgrade it how and when you want...)
    Last edited by 4cmd3; 02-27-08 at 12:58 PM.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by spambait11 View Post
    REI has now established themselves as the Costco of the outdoor world.

    It will be interesting to see what REI sells them for and whether Dahon can meet the demand.
    Costco? REI is usually more expensive than most of the small independents and a LOT more expensive than most of the major online retailers. I only shop there for the once a year member 20% discount. Everything else I get cheaper elsewhere.

    Both REIs in my area are not going to stock the Fly By. It is a special order item only and neither store has sold one yet. They've been available for order about 2 months. We'll see what happens with it, but it doesn't look like people are lining up, just like they aren't lining up at the few Dahon retailers in town, most of which also do not stock bikes. The "good" shop in town I really like won't touch folders because their surveys show virtually no interest among their clientel. I'd say the price difference between the REI bike and the Mu is probably because REI negotiated what they felt was a price point they might actually sell a few at. From the looks of it at the REI stores near here, there is not going to be some large promotion campaign for these bikes.

    Anyway, I'm not trying to bust your balls, I'm just saying I don't see this as evidence of anything except Dahon trying to land a major retail brand after Trek lost interest. Most of the world seems to see folders as "interesting" but impractical. I don't see the iPod of folding bikes out of this little partnership or any folder making headlines with record sales. I have to say riding around the Bike Friday sometimes I pass it up for a full size now and then because I still like the feel of a full-size bike. I also have noticed bending the cables folding it knocks the derailer settings out much more quickly which is an annoyance to me. The Bike Friday is a great bike, but if I were going to own one bike I don't think a folder would be it, at least not yet.
    Last edited by Mr. Smith; 02-27-08 at 01:08 PM.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by BB49 View Post
    The Fly-By is now on the REI website, priced at $599.
    (...) Dahon appears to be dropping the fully loaded and 3 lb heavier $900 MU XL and offering the hub generator and rear rack as options.
    The Mu XL (non-Sport) still exists... just as a Global/International model though:
    http://www.dahon.com/intl/muxl.htm

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