I'm new to the world of folding bikes and I'm curious about a few things. I also made a post "Newbee from San Diego looking for folder" so if you can add your insights or advice please feel free.
From all the Downtube models available, why isn't the Downtube Mini the least expensive? I noticed their 2008 full suspension and front suspension bikes are all cheaper than the Mini. I'd imagine the Mini to be the least expensive due to it using less "materials" because of its smaller frame. Also, it doesn't have some of the things that the other models have, such as a front suspension, fenders, kickstand, etc.
How "maintenance free" will this bike really be? I ask because I don't know how to fix anything and I just want a simple, fun bike to ride around in without the hassle of having to lube it up, make modifications, change parts, etc.
I noticed that new for the 2008 model there is an adjustable stem. What exactly is the stem? Does this mean that that I can change the height of the bike to accomodate taller riders? (I am 6 feet tall, 150 pounds and curious if the bike will be too small for me)
As stated earlier, I finally got the chance to try out a folding bike--Dahon D7 w/20-inch wheels and was very impressed. It was extremely comfortable. Is there a big difference in comfort as compared to 16-inch wheels?
How would you compare the "fun factor" between a 16-inch vs a 20-inch wheel?
When people speak of short rides vs long rides and the comfort level, how many miles is considered short? Long? I am curious because on shorter rides, things like ride quality, smoothness, comfort, having suspension and good tires, etc. don't become much on an issue, correct? (I think I'm obsessing too much about these things although ride quality is very important to me)
Lastly, now that the 2008 model is out, how does it compare to the 2007 and earlier models? Is it much improved with quality control, parts, comfort, etc?
Thanks in advance....I'm very excited about getting a folder. It's almost springtime--the perfect time of year to get a bike and start riding around town.