Compact locking fold?
I’m still new to the whole folding world but I’m hooked, I own a Downtube 8FS currently stock but with various upgrades on order.
I saw a Brompton folder on the train in the week and was very impressed by the fold especially the way it holds itself together, my Downtube is a chunky fold and is harder than I thought to commute on a packed train.
I’m looking at the $1500 range and like the look of the Birdy, Brompton and Reach but I’m open. I really want more gears (16-24) and a comfortable ride but to be able to commute with ease. I like the way the Brompton locks, stands up on its own and is very compact. Are there any other bikes that fold and lock like this?
Last edited by Gilzean; 05-10-08 at 12:07 PM.
No. (Well, maybe the Mercton, a Brompton clone). The Brompton is in a class by itself when it comes to small tight folds.
Originally Posted by Gilzean
Mercton is the enthusiasts rename of the Merc bike. Flamingo bike seems to be a variant brand of it.
As I get it. Merc looks like a clone while Flamingo have models looking uniquely Flamingo.
Do a search here in bikeforums.net for Flamingo and Merc and you see a lot of enthusiastic owners giving their reports on how thankful they are.
I live in Sweden and I had never heard of neither of them, cause here we are kind of proud to be able to pay double price for quality bikes.
Merc and Flamingo have maybe plastic where Brompton have metal. Flamingo maybe Alu where Brompton have Steel?
But I trust the enthusiastic Merc owner that reported here that he has used his bike all the year around and Merc is holding up to much beating. Could be well worth the price.
If money is of concern then buy a Flamingo? But 1500 maybe buy you a good Brompton. There are many many variations on Brompton. You should find a dealer that hav many of them and test folding and riding until you are satisfied with it.
I have not checked though. Both Brompton and Merc and Flamingo too expensive for me to buy. Even at half price a bit stiff.
Other bikes with tight folding? The Integrated Folding (IF) that Mark Sanders have done for Pacific Cycles in Taiwan looks rather tight.
Th older name for IF was http://www.swivel-head.com/ and they are made by this company
Last edited by Weakling; 05-11-08 at 02:02 AM.
That's a very compact fold mustered by the IF design! Plus being able to wheel your bicycle along while folded up is wonderful. Even a better design than the BF Tikit in terms of having both wheels rolling instead of one. Much more stable. I'd love to see this design catch on.
Mark Sanders has a beautiful mind.
Mezzo also fold small, and lock when folded
How about the Birdy? whats the bike and fold like?
The Birdy is exceptional to ride. Fast, comfortable and fun. It's good enough that you may well prefer to ride it over a bike with full size wheels even on a long ride or tour.
Originally Posted by Gilzean
Its' fold is very quick once you learn how to do it but it takes a bit longer to get the hang of it.
The Birdy's folded size is smaller than most and it folds with the chain to the inside, an important factor in a crowd. It is not however as compact when folded as the bikes that are optimized for most compact fold rather than other issues such as ride quality (eg Brompton, Strida)
If you only want a bike to commute on a very crowded train and then ride for a short distance then a bike like a Brompton or Strida might suit you better. If you also want to ride for longer distances then I would choose a Birdy.
In my mind the Birdy is the best all rounder and thats why I bought one. It is either the best or close to the best at everything but if you only want a bike for one specific purpose and are sure that that is all you will use it for, you may find a bike that you prefer for that specific purpose.
The only folders I have personally witnessed locking together solidly are the Carryme, the Strida, and the Brompton. Although I'm sure there are others, beware that while many folders are supposedly designed to lock together, most of them don't really do it well (ex Dahon).
I just use a bungie cord to "lock" my folder. I suppose this method would work with any bike.
That said, If I had a larger budget, I would probably go for Brompton (or a Merc/Flamingo). I like the look of the Mezzo better though.
If you buy a 6 speed Brompton you will be a happy person with your purchase. With time, you can add more gears if needed.
Originally Posted by Gilzean
Good luck with your final decision, and make sure you come back and share with us what you end up choosing.
Generally 16" wheels work better on the train than 20" wheels. The dhaon range fold a little more compact then your Downtube, but not proberbly enought to make the difference that you reguire.mezzo can be upgraded to dual drive with 24(or 27) gears if you need. See the upgrading a mezzo/ori thread I started for more information, as can a Dahon or a birdie.
The Brompton can be upgraded to 16 speed ( in theory) with a bit of effort. The SA8 hub fits the narrower Brompton frame giving eight gears. This could then be doulbed up by also using a Steven Perry front mech adapter (£50), a campaq front mech and a double chainring.
Last edited by bhkyte; 03-21-09 at 04:10 AM.
found this.It applies to the DT mini.But
may work on other bikes ie DT FS or dahons?
Originally Posted by makeinu
Good point, and it's also nonangled which means it can be used to lock the bike together as tightly as a Brompton. Here's how:
The basic idea is instead of folding the bars between the wheels, lay the stem over the rear wheel stays so the bars are chain side. Then adjust the stem shorter until the bars are tight against the frame, push down the seat, and, voila, the main hinge can't unfold due to being pinched by the bars and stem riser can't fold up due to being caught under the seat.
hope this helps never thought of trying this on my now sold Downtube