Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  


Go Back   > >

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.

User Tag List

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 01-04-08, 11:03 AM   #1
Xanti Andia
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Bikes: Co-Motion Mocha, Trek T100, Schwinn Fastback Comp, Specialized Stumpjumper
Posts: 378
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Bikefriday Llama vs a conventional MTB?

Serendipity has brought me to a folding bicycle as an option for my next bike. I ride a Co-Motion Mocha tandem and a Schwinn Fastback Comp road. To complete my bike riding I will at some point get an MTB which can double as a touring bike. At this point all my touring has been on the tandem, which is the most fun you can have on two wheels, but stoker is not a fan of the really hard rides.

So I'm thinking a mid level mountain bike, rim brakes, front suspension fork, and keeping a spare non-suspended fork around for touring. Aluminium frame, Simano XT group I suppose, or some SRAM configuration.

As a mountain bike it will see everything from good pavement to bad gravel roads, no real technical rides. As a touring bike it would see more of the same, self supported with front and rear panniers. In both cases it should be ready to climb and descend decent mountain passes. I do not expect to do extended tours, more like a week or two at a time.

But then I though, why not a Bikefriday Llama? Bikefriday seems to claim that the Llama is capable of anything, and there are clear advantages to a folding bike in getting to the ride, however I'd like to hear about what are the disadvantages of a Llama vs a conventional MTB.
Xanti Andia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-08, 11:24 AM   #2
spambait11
Seņor Mambo
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Fremont, CA
Bikes: Ti Sports roadie, Cannondale CAAD 3, Tern Cargo Node, Helix (soon)
Posts: 1,344
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xanti Andia View Post
But then I though, why not a Bikefriday Llama? Bikefriday seems to claim that the Llama is capable of anything, and there are clear advantages to a folding bike in getting to the ride, however I'd like to hear about what are the disadvantages of a Llama vs a conventional MTB.
For one, Bike Friday uses cromoly; don't know how stuck you are on aluminum. Another would be tire clearance issues: the bigger the wheel, the easier to clear.

BF makes quality bikes, but it won't be fast folding. There are other full-sized folding bike options around which will allow you to attach standard racks etc. This is not to say that Bike Friday won't allow you to attach such racks, but their custom racks always fit their bikes better.

Anyway, you might also want to google the Dahon Matrix or Dahon Jack and the Montague Paratrooper as well.
spambait11 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-08, 09:13 PM   #3
geo8rge
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Bikes:
Posts: 2,012
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Read posts about 20" vs 26" wheels. Wheel size is the deal killer, not to mention no suspension on BF. You might find that with sufficient disassebly you can get a MTB into a compact form.
__________________
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.
geo8rge is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-04-08, 10:28 PM   #4
itsahobby
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 22
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
"As a mountain bike it will see everything from good pavement to bad gravel roads, no real technical rides"
I don't see any real need for a suspension fork if that's the type of riding you will do.

The Pocket Llama can do most things, but obviously some things it will not do as well as a full size suspended mtb.

I have a PL, and it's great on pavement & gravel, but if you go off the beaten track (say rough single track) then you need to pick your way through the obstacles (slowly) and not just attack everything like you can on a decent full size mtb.

Also, I don't even think about jumping the PL like I did on my previous mtb and I am way more careful about potholes with the smaller wheels, and even cautious in jumping kerbs as the basic sram rear derailleur on my 8 speed setup hangs low.

Also a PL (or any BF) will cost more than a similarly equipped full size mtb or road bike.

IMO the Pocket Llama would be as good as a decent 26" mtb for touring & commuting, but not as good out in the forest.

I love riding my PL so much that I've sold my full size mtb & given up going into the forest as I get all the fun I need just general commuting riding on the PL.

Check out the milk crate:
itsahobby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-08, 01:28 AM   #5
LittlePixel
Raleigh20 PugFixie, Merc
 
LittlePixel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: London UK
Bikes: 1982 Raleigh Twenty Hotrod Fixie; 1984 Peugeot Premier Fixie, 2007 Merc Lightweight folder
Posts: 1,991
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Nice Crate!
It looks up to the job. For a more high-end folding mountainbike one might look in the direction of the Airnimal Rhino. Possibly overkill but certainly bombproof; Lockout the forks and put on slicks for the road and job's done.




More here:
http://www.airnimalfoldingbikes.com/M_RhinoBlack.php
LittlePixel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-08, 01:43 AM   #6
spambait11
Seņor Mambo
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Fremont, CA
Bikes: Ti Sports roadie, Cannondale CAAD 3, Tern Cargo Node, Helix (soon)
Posts: 1,344
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by LittlePixel View Post
Nice Crate!
It looks up to the job. For a more high-end folding mountainbike one might look in the direction of the Airnimal Rhino. Possibly overkill but certainly bombproof; Lockout the forks and put on slicks for the road and job's done.




More here:
http://www.airnimalfoldingbikes.com/M_RhinoBlack.php
And where, pray tell, is he supposed to attach his panniers?

j/k
spambait11 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-08, 06:24 AM   #7
Xanti Andia
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Bikes: Co-Motion Mocha, Trek T100, Schwinn Fastback Comp, Specialized Stumpjumper
Posts: 378
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks.

Could not find posts comparing 20" to 26" wheels, but the Llama poster answers some of these issues.

Airnimal Rhino looks nice, but out of my budget, and in any case I might lean towards 26" I am not really looking for a foldable as much as travel bicycle.

Dahon Matrix might make more sense, and the price is very atractive, don't know enough about the component choices in this bike, any owners out there care to coment (I'll start another thread on this question)?.
Xanti Andia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-08, 09:42 AM   #8
Bacciagalupe
Professional Fuss-Budget
 
Bacciagalupe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 6,438
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xanti Andia View Post
Airnimal Rhino looks nice, but out of my budget, and in any case I might lean towards 26" I am not really looking for a foldable as much as travel bicycle....
Unfortunately, you can't fit a 26" folding bike into an airline-legal suitcase.

Fortunately, S&S couplers are an option. You can retrofit any steel MTB frame of your choice. Because the frame actually separates, it will pack smaller and you can use 26" or 700c wheels.

You may want to consider the Surly "Traveler's Check," which is a cyclocross bike with couplers. As a 'cross bike it will work very well for non-technical off-road uses, and will work very well on the road. It should handle short tours almost as well as a true touring bike. (Not sure when it's out though)

One other thing about 20" wheeled bikes and offroad is that the rear derailleur is pretty low to the ground. BF raised the bottom bracket on the Llama, but the derailleur may still get whacked at some point.
Bacciagalupe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-08, 10:23 AM   #9
werewolf
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Arizona
Bikes: Swift folder, single speed
Posts: 857
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Itsa - How is the crate attached to the rack?
werewolf is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-08, 03:22 PM   #10
bokes
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: SF Bay
Bikes:
Posts: 505
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I test rode a Pocket Llama for a day over rough terrain, and it was a lot of fun. However, like itsahobby said, you have to pay more attention to obstacles than with a 26"er.
But I much preferred the handling of the NWT over the PL after loading the bikes with 35 lbs in front and rear panniers. The PL felt a little squirrely, where the NWT's lower center of gravity felt more stable. I didn't have a problem with heel strike on the NWT because I don't ride technical stuff with small wheels. Plus the NWT can still fit tires up to 1.75 width, which is the widest tire I'd want to use anyways, assuming most of my miles are on pavement.

After riding my NWT for 5000+ miles, I still really like the bike, but I've figured out that there are situations where I prefer standard wheels; the bigger wheels are smoother and faster on rough terrain and more stable on fast descents.
But for someone who likes to take shorter trips with an airplane/bus/car/train, I think the packability of the folder outweighs these things.

If you want to see some pics of my NWT on a cross country tour, here's my journal: www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/2391
bokes is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-05-08, 04:09 PM   #11
itsahobby
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Bikes:
Posts: 22
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by werewolf View Post
Itsa - How is the crate attached to the rack?
Its attached with 2 small pieces of wood (light) & wing nuts - very stable.
(you can see the wood on the underside of the rack)
itsahobby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-11-08, 07:31 PM   #12
sprockets
Senior Member
 
sprockets's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Bikes:
Posts: 165
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I took a Pocket Llama down the world's highest active volcano. No problems. Check out the thread and bike pr0n here: BF Pocket Llama in Ecuador
sprockets is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-08, 07:54 AM   #13
pm124
Car free since 1995
 
pm124's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: NYC
Bikes: Birdy Yellow, Birdy Monocoque
Posts: 1,021
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Here, I'm all for bigger wheels. I'm fine on the deeply rutted roads here, but I go slow. Then again, there are those who are bolder:

http://72.14.203.104/translate_c?hl=...%3Den%26sa%3DX
pm124 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-12-08, 02:49 PM   #14
jur
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2005
Bikes:
Posts: 6,855
Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 46 Post(s)
I'm now very sorry I didn't take pics on my recent ride where I took the Downtube Mini on the Breedtsnek Pass. The road was severely damaged by recent rain and rough even by MTB standards. While I certainly didn't go as fast as on a dually, the Mini & I handled it just fine, none of the issue of the wheels getting swallowed up by wheel-sized holes. I did pull the front wheel up to jump some of the bigger ditches.

Going downhill was more of a problem due to the handlebar vibration.

So my take is the Lama will do just fine but won't be as fast. But hey, who's racing anyway?
jur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-08, 12:22 PM   #15
Xanti Andia
Senior Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Bikes: Co-Motion Mocha, Trek T100, Schwinn Fastback Comp, Specialized Stumpjumper
Posts: 378
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Thanks everybody, I ended up tossing the idea of a foldable and went for a 2000 Specialized Stumpjumper hardtrail bike, bought in the Bay Area thanks to Craigslist. Packed the bike in a bike box reduced in size by taking both wheels, seat and hadlebars off, and flew to Buenos Aires. American Airlines did not hit me with a surcharge, bike arrived fine.

So now with my four bikes in the garage (two tandems, road and MTB) wife will not allow for a foldable without getting rid of something. I know some of you might keep your foldable under the bed, but I have a massage table there.
Xanti Andia is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off



All times are GMT -6. The time now is 03:24 AM.