Downtube: internal hub or 9-speed?
I'm a bit new to all this, and I can't figure it out: do the advantages of the internal hub outweigh having that extra low gear? One very helpful review on this site mentioned the gearing on the 8H was a bit odd. I'm very much not (yet) a gearhead, won't be mucking about with adjusting the gears myself, and don't want to watch the low-price incentive of the Downtube trickle away at bike shops.
I was originally intending to use the bike for light touring -- the BF (that's boyfriend, not Bike Friday, unfortunately) and I mostly do 2-3 day fully-loaded trips. It sounded as though the internal hub was easier/neater to fold, and perhaps better for the kind of frequent weekend train trips we do.
Ah, but I said "originally." Last weekend, I tried a folder for the first time. See, I'm 4'9", and...wow. It was a totally new and completely amazing experience to ride a bike that fit, for the first time in my life.
So, now I'm thinking that this DT is going to replace my regular bike for around town, and we live on a big hill, making the extra low gear more attractive.
Thoughts? Anyone with a 2008 8H found they had to adjust their gearing to conquer hills?
While I'm asking, what's the deal with the NS being more expensive than the front suspension? I've only ever ridden bikes without suspension, and that was the model I tried out (the only one the store had), and it seemed fine to me, but I figured I'd be getting front suspension just because it seemed nutty to opt for less comfort for long rides. But then I do get suspicious about the higher price of the NS. Other than lighter weight, does it have other advantages I'm not seeing?
And, finally, Yan -- if you're reading this, thanks for making a short person very happy! But...please know that your website and other sales material variously give the minimum rider height at 4'9", 4'10", and even 4'6". That difference does matter, for some of us. FWIW, at 4'9", I was wishing the head tube was 1" shorter than it was able to adjust, but it was close enough, and certainly an order of magnitude better than what I've been riding.