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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.

View Poll Results: My UNMODIFIED folder is comfortable up to?
2 to 10 miles 6 20.69%
10 to 20 miles 8 27.59%
over 20 5 17.24%
As comfotable as any full sized bike I have ridden. 9 31.03%
Not comfortable at all but I need a bike that can fold. 1 3.45%
Voters: 29. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 11-13-07, 06:56 PM   #1
yamcha
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Comfort poll

How comfortable is it?
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Old 11-13-07, 07:44 PM   #2
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Irrelevant - I mod my folders until they are comfortable. I don't expect them to be comfortable out of the box.
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Old 11-13-07, 07:46 PM   #3
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If it's a Brompton or Birdy, probably over 20.

My Dahon 16' inch Presto is uncomfortable after 10 miles. With my suspension seat post, closer to 40 miles. With a Brooks Champion Flyer, who knows?

There's no question that a smaller wheel is going to be harder than a full size hybrid. This can be rectified easily and for not too much money.
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Old 11-13-07, 08:05 PM   #4
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Irrelevant - I mod my folders until they are comfortable. I don't expect them to be comfortable out of the box.

Make your own poll then for yourself. I and many people do expect some level of comfort right out of the box and I think folding bike makers do want their bikes to be comfortable too.
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Old 11-13-07, 08:06 PM   #5
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I just rode my Dahon Speed D7 a bit over 20miles with no discomfort and it is stock.
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Old 11-13-07, 08:28 PM   #6
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Make your own poll then for yourself. I and many people do expect some level of comfort right out of the box and I think folding bike makers do want their bikes to be comfortable too.
Your comfort is defined by short distance. Mine by long distance. It is relatively easy to stick a thick padded saddle and some platform pedals along with standard grips on a bike and it should be fair for the distance in your poll. Try to ride it a century and it quickly becomes clear that the rules change for real long-distance comfort.

I often ride my folders on centuries and beyond and they're very comfy. I ride them beyond 20mi every day.
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Old 11-13-07, 08:40 PM   #7
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Yeah you have a point jur. Personally, i think it's stupid to modify a folder into a road bike. It defeats the purpose and spirit of the bike. But that's just me and yes, I am a short distance rider. The longest I've ever ridden on my folder is maybe 15 miles and it was OK but not great.

Last edited by yamcha; 11-14-07 at 11:49 AM.
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Old 11-14-07, 08:22 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by yamcha View Post
... Personally, i think it's stupid to modify a folder into a road bike. It defeats the purpose and spirit of the bike....
+1.

My Downtube Mini is somewhat modified, with fenders, dynamo hub with accompanying lights, brooks saddle, etc; but these do not really change the fit, so don't count. More importantly, they do not change the fold. I've also changed the tires, which I suppose is more relevant, but hardly counts as a modification (or does it?). The result is a bike that matches my personal needs and preferences better than it did out-of-the-box, but I consider the bike, for the purposes of this poll, unmodified. Oh, and I changed the grips almost immediately, because the stock grips were definitely uncomfortable. Does that count?

That said... there is no discomfort involved in riding this bike; it's less efficient, due to aerodynamics, than a bike that would offer a longer reach. So after 15-mile rides, which I've done many times, I find I'm more tired than after my usual 5-10 mile rides (go figure!). I don't think I'd go much beyond 25 miles just because being in the same riding position for two hours would probably lead to discomfort.
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Old 11-14-07, 12:53 PM   #9
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I think jur is right
well for me he is...
I've never bought a bike that was right out of the box...
always need to change something and offten a lot.
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Old 11-14-07, 01:34 PM   #10
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Personally, i think it's stupid to modify a folder into a road bike. It defeats the purpose and spirit of the bike.
I don't understand why this 'defeats the purpose and spirit of the bike'. You don't get a folding bike so you can fold it, you get it to RIDE. Folding is just a bonus that makes it easier to get the bike to where you're going to RIDE. RIDING is the purpose of all bikes.

On topic - I've never had a bike that was completely comfortable out of the box.
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Old 11-14-07, 01:38 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by rhm View Post
My Downtube Mini is somewhat modified, with fenders, dynamo hub with accompanying lights, brooks saddle, etc; but these do not really change the fit, so don't count. More importantly, they do not change the fold. I've also changed the tires, which I suppose is more relevant, but hardly counts as a modification (or does it?). The result is a bike that matches my personal needs and preferences better than it did out-of-the-box, but I consider the bike, for the purposes of this poll, unmodified. Oh, and I changed the grips almost immediately, because the stock grips were definitely uncomfortable. Does that count?
You changed the saddle, grips & tires. Dude, you've modified your bike to make it more comfortable.

Last edited by Spudmeister; 11-14-07 at 01:51 PM. Reason: incomplete
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Old 11-14-07, 01:52 PM   #12
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I've done multiple 25 and 50 milers on my Dahon D7.

For me, it was comfortable right out of the box.

Come to think of it, the stock tire failed during one of the 50 milers! Had to repair it with a boot so I could continue! I replaced both tires with 1.75" Schwalbes.

I put another saddle on it that I thought would be more comfortable, but went back to the stock seat after a couple of rides.

Oh, I added Crane Creek bullhorns and clipless pedals.

Hmm. My position isn't getting any better here...
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Old 11-14-07, 02:22 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Spudmeister View Post
You changed the saddle, grips & tires. Dude, you've modified your bike to make it more comfortable.
Yeah, yeah, you have a point, but it's a matter of definition, isn't it? These things are ephemeral, changing them doesn't change the geometry or fit of the bike. With the exception of the tires, of course, since I put a big one in front and a little one in back, effectively relaxing the frame angles by a degree or so.

Oh, I forgot to mention this one: I also disabled the suspension on mine by tying it into compressed position with nylon twine. Another modification made for the sake of comfort!

For my purposes, the most important thing about the folding bike is that it folds, and any modification that has no impact on the fold is irrelevant. Which brings us to your other point:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spudmeister View Post
I don't understand why this 'defeats the purpose and spirit of the bike'. You don't get a folding bike so you can fold it, you get it to RIDE. Folding is just a bonus that makes it easier to get the bike to where you're going to RIDE. RIDING is the purpose of all bikes.
This just isn't true in my case; if my bike didn't fold up, I wouldn't be able to take it on commuter trains during rush hour, so it would become useless as a commuting machine. I would like to change the stem, to increase reach and thus comfort and efficiency, but then the fold would be less compact and the bike would be less useful; so that modification would indeed defeat the purpose of the bike. As for its spirit... well, I'm not sure what the spirit is either.

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On topic - I've never had a bike that was completely comfortable out of the box.
No, I guess I haven't either. Either that or I just can't resist changing things.
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Old 11-14-07, 02:36 PM   #14
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This just isn't true in my case; if my bike didn't fold up, I wouldn't be able to take it on commuter trains during rush hour, so it would become useless as a commuting machine. .

If you couldn't ride your bike there'd be no point in taking it on the train. If you couldn't ride your bike it would be useless as a commuting machine.

Ephemeral - I had to look that one up. There's nothing ephemeral about a comfortable saddle.



ephemeral

adjective
1. lasting a very short time; "the ephemeral joys of childhood"; "a passing fancy"; "youth's transient beauty"; "love is transitory but it is eternal"; "fugacious blossoms"

noun
1. anything short-lived, as an insect that lives only for a day in its winged form [syn: ephemeron]

Last edited by Spudmeister; 11-14-07 at 02:43 PM. Reason: bad grammar
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