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  1. #1
    Building a better Strida
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    strida news for 2009 press info inside

    Quote Originally Posted by strida mail

    New York, 2008: Areaware will launch three new STRiDA models and introduce a line of accessories at the upcoming Interbike Expo in Las Vegas. Visit us at booth #245 in the Sands Convention Center from September 24-26 to see the new MAS Special, XT, and Sport Duo. All three models will be available for Spring 2009. In addition to Brushed Aluminum, Black, White, Yellow, Pink, Red, Blue, Special Edition Cream, and Orange (a MoMA Exclusive), the 5.0 is now available in Neon Green. To download our 2009 catalog click here.
    MAS (Mark A. Sanders) Special Signature Edition STRiDA

    The MAS Special, XT, and Sport Duo STRiDAs are made from lightweight, rustproof aluminum, weigh just 10 kilos and fold in 5 seconds. STRiDA utilizes a clean and quiet Kevlar belt instead of the traditional greasy and noisy metal chain. With an upright riding position and solid center of gravity, the STRiDA offers an ergonomic ride for all users. The key to the comfort and quick fold time is the unique triangular construction which sets the STRiDA apart from all other bikes on the market.

    The new MAS Special is the fastest, most advanced STRiDA to date. Inventor Mark Sanders has stripped the bike down to its simplest and most elegant form while adding high performance technology. At the heart of MAS’s speed and agility is the Schlumpf 2 speed drive – a sophisticated Swiss engineered drive system that allows the rider to shift seamlessly between high and low gears with a simple tap of the heel. A custom black anodized finish on frame and parts, an ergonomic racing saddle, and alloy cranks, chain ring, and pedals top out the MAS’s list of high performance features. Retail $1400.

    5.0 in 9 Classic Colors and now NEON GREEN

    The original 5.0 model is available in 9 vibrant colors. Check out Neon Green, designer Mark Sanders' favorite color. Contact MoMA at (212-708-9888) for information on their exclusive Orange Strida. The 5.0 is available for immediate shipping. Retail $800 (Cream $900).
    Sport Duo 2 Speed STRiDA

    Like the MAS Special, the Sport Duo features the award winning Schlumpf 2 speed drive and is available in brushed aluminum. Retail $1200.


    STRiDA XT for Taller Riders

    The STRiDA XT was designed to accommodate taller riders with a larger frame and 18" wheels. Available in brushed aluminum. Retail $1000.
    New STRiDA Accessories

    Areaware introduces a full line of STRiDA accessories which now includes a customized iPod ready backpack, rack and under seat bags, high performance wheels, bottle holder and numerous other functional add-ons. Also offered - a line of high end leather accessories such as a saddle, saddle bag and handle grips for a more traditional aesthetic.


    About STRiDA

    STRiDA folding bikes were invented in the U.K. by Mark Sanders in response to a pressing urban problem—the daily commute. The London Times recently named STRiDA,“the number one tool for a new generation of urban nomads". “I have always loved bicycles for their role in human life—at their best, they exist at the perfect intersection of utility and design,” says Sanders. “Transportation means freedom, and a folding bike is even more freeing than a regular bike since you can literally take it anywhere.”

    To date, over 50,000 STRiDAs have been sold around the world. The design has evolved from the initial patented 1988 model, into a lighter, stiffer form which boasts superior performance. The STRiDA has won many awards including ID Magazine's prestigious Design Review award, Cyclex awards, and Millennium Product awards. It is displayed in several design museums worldwide including London’s Design Museum and Nijmegen Fietsmuseum, Holland and is currently in the Museum of Modern Art retail collection.

    STRiDA is distributed throughout North and South America by Areaware. For more information, please visit www.strida.us, email info@strida.us or call 212.226.5155.
    no pics, but this press release sounds damn fine.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Lalato's Avatar
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    I'm intrigued by the STRiDA XT. 18" wheels!

    --sam

  3. #3
    fanatik Speedub.Nate's Avatar
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    Here are a couple of photos to go along with the press release.

    I've started a separate thread with a picture of the XT w/ 18" wheels.
    Strida XT "for tall riders" w/ 18" wheels...

    "MAS" special edition Duo (Schlumpf):


    2009 colors:

  4. #4
    pooh bear joose's Avatar
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    Can somebody give me a simple reason why this bike is so expensive? Am I missing something here? I really want one but just cannot bring myself to pay so much for three poles, two wheels, a seat and saddle.

    Don't tell me it's about the economies of scale, how unique do metal tubes get?

    Buying one at this price would make me hate the bike for each and every time I saw it. I would feel ripped off everytime

  5. #5
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    So the Schlumpf 2 speed drive is about 400 USD... and my Strida 3 cost me 299 EUR.

    Besides, what about the gearings?
    Last edited by Carlos71; 09-18-08 at 02:59 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by joose View Post
    Can somebody give me a simple reason why this bike is so expensive? Am I missing something here? I really want one but just cannot bring myself to pay so much for three poles, two wheels, a seat and saddle.

    Don't tell me it's about the economies of scale, how unique do metal tubes get?

    Buying one at this price would make me hate the bike for each and every time I saw it. I would feel ripped off everytime
    Yup and why are they so heavy (again, it's two tubes...even a single speed Brompton comes in around 10kg)?

    All my respect goes to Mark Sanders, but I think the weakness of the Strida design is really starting to show:
    -There are three sizes now and each size needs different wheels and frame tubes to work. Since the geometry is so strict in terms of fit they really had no choice but to expand the lineup like this, but whatever economies of scale issues they might have had before will certainly be worse with 9 tubes instead of 3. If regular bikes could not make achieving better fit with different wheel sizes commercially viable then how will Strida do it?
    -Also, although two speed is nice, I'd rather be able to stand and mash (which, again, the geometry does not permit) than fiddle with the schlumpf mechanism.
    -Lastly, there's no stand. There's really no excuse at all for this to be left out. Don't tell me about a kickstand. Why on earth would anyone want a kickstand on a folding bike which is going to be folded after riding?! Also don't tell me about laying it onto the rack; there's about 5" difference between laying it on the rack and simply laying it all the way down, which is pointless.

    I am, however, glad there are so many color choices.

    Quote Originally Posted by Carlos71 View Post
    So the Schlumpf 2 speed drive is about 400 USD... and my Strida 3 cost me 299 EUR.

    Besides, what about the gearings?
    It costs about 200USD to upgrade the Carryme to a Schlumpf.

    Me thinks there's too many middle men in the Strida supply chain.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by makeinu View Post

    It costs about 200USD to upgrade the Carryme to a Schlumpf.

    Me thinks there's too many middle men in the Strida supply chain.
    Nah. They will say that the belt drive adaption/development was too expensive, difficult...

  8. #8
    Celebrate Diversity! JSnow789's Avatar
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    I know nothing about these things; what is the likely hood of being able to upgrade an existing 5.0 to use the 2 speed drive?
    'Life isn't about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain.'

  9. #9
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    Looking forward to trying them. I'm a big fan of Strida and also other products that simplify life ... as in the 'Simple ... ' tag. Simple, effective things like iphones, B&O audio, and even schlumpf and belt drives actually take a lot of unseen work behind the scenes (eg software development and re-inventing how they are constructed, etc etc).

  10. #10
    jur
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    About mass, I have mentioned before that bike weights are deceptive. The frame looks big so the natural assumption is that is where the weight (and the cost) mainly lies. Not so - the frame mass (and cost) is roughly 20% of the total. So if a bike is heavy, don't look at the frame only - first look at all the other stuff. EG my Swift weighs in at 8.5kg but it doesn't have a particularly light frame, being twice as heavy as a typical roadie frame. The overall bike s light because I considered every single part I put on the frame.

    And about selling price, something is almost never sold based on what it costs, it is sold for what the market is (grumblingly) willing to pay. Competition is what will bring the price down, not material cost.
    My folding bike photo essays www.dekter.net/

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    Quote Originally Posted by jur View Post
    About mass, I have mentioned before that bike weights are deceptive. The frame looks big so the natural assumption is that is where the weight (and the cost) mainly lies. Not so - the frame mass (and cost) is roughly 20% of the total. So if a bike is heavy, don't look at the frame only - first look at all the other stuff. EG my Swift weighs in at 8.5kg but it doesn't have a particularly light frame, being twice as heavy as a typical roadie frame. The overall bike s light because I considered every single part I put on the frame.
    Yeah, but the Strida doesn't have much other stuff either. No gears/shifters, no seatpost, small wheels. There's just not much there to add up unless the remaining stuff is exceedingly heavy for an $800 bike.

    For example, what would you say makes the Carryme so light? Sure it has small wheels, but we all know that smaller is not always lighter and the remaining parts don't seem to be much different from what you find on Pacific's other (relatively porky) bikes...if not worse because it's the cheapest bike they sell.

    Quote Originally Posted by jur View Post
    And about selling price, something is almost never sold based on what it costs, it is sold for what the market is (grumblingly) willing to pay. Competition is what will bring the price down, not material cost.
    I don't buy that explanation because:
    1. There is competition. Even if you don't count all the other folding bikes on the market the Carryme is surely a very viable substitute with models corresponding to nearly every Strida configuration at nearly half the price. Not to mention the Strida clones (fair or not, it is competition).
    2. Historically the market has not been willing to pay even the lower previous prices. So how could you argue that the higher prices are the result of the market's willingness to pay?

    Maybe things are different in Australia, but here in the US retail prices tend to be very elastic. So if something isn't sold at close to cost it probably won't be sold at all. There are, of course, exceptions; Notably most of the crap advertised in women's magazines where Strida ads have recently started appearing.

    In any case my point is that I think the dynamic we're seeing here is much more complicated than simply supply and demand. There are risks being taken, investments being made, advertising campaigns being driven and I believe the prices we're seeing here are a reflection of the expectation of all those involved to get paid. Yes supply and demand will determine what price is ultimately sustainable, but I don't think we're there yet (nor am I sure if we'll ever get there if the cost is too high).
    Last edited by makeinu; 09-19-08 at 06:35 AM.

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    I'll tell you some factors involved in the high price.

    1. Falling U.S. Dollar -- It's not just the Strida but ALL folding bikes have gone up in price. If you'll notice, the Strida is much less if purchased in Euros or British Pound Sterling.

    2. High Energy Cost --- This no doubt increasing prices in food, clothing etc. Add to this list bicycles.

    3. Low Volume product --- Of all folding bikes in Manhattan, the Strida is hardly ever seen. I suspect this is the case even in the UK. Before production, they use prior sales figures to estimate break even point. I suspect the price of the Strida is determined by the fact they fully expect to sell several thousand thus requiring a very high price to cover production costs.

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    $800, $1000, $1400? WTF?????

    http://www.omkmtb.co.kr/Product.asp?PCode=002019019
    Here in SK, 1-spd strida is $500 and 2-spd one is $800, and I still think they are still way expensive, with the introduction of $150 ripoff stridas.

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    Even the 'genuine' stridas are notorious for its very low durability.
    Seat pins tend to break, 'silent' belt drive squeak a lot, (Many strida owners put liquid soap to remove squeaking) front and rear mono-fork goes out of alignment, plastic ball joint explodes.

    I do like strida for its exceptional design and 'stick' folding, but its US price seems to be hideously high for what it gives.

  15. #15
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    I'm not sure that squeaky belts are any less annoying than all the whining about the Strida. Here's a suggestion: Buy something else.

  16. #16
    Small wheels ARE better! OldiesONfoldies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chainstrainer View Post
    I'm not sure that squeaky belts are any less annoying than all the whining about the Strida. Here's a suggestion: Buy something else.
    That's what two of my friends and I did...

  17. #17
    rhm
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    Quote Originally Posted by chainstrainer View Post
    I'm not sure that squeaky belts are any less annoying than all the whining about the Strida. Here's a suggestion: Buy something else.
    I did. But I still enjoy whining about the Strida. Strida is a great design and incorporates many good ideas. It is a great bicycle, but while it could be a great mainstream bicycle, it remains a fringe item. It is rather painful to see it continue to fail to thrive, so one wonders who's to blame. And I blame the Strida company.

    Larger and smaller frame sizes for larger and smaller riders makes sense, but I don't see any reason why they should have larger and smaller wheels. Beside the frame, the only component that would need to be larger or smaller, it seems to me, would be the drive belt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve View Post
    1. Falling U.S. Dollar -- It's not just the Strida but ALL folding bikes have gone up in price. If you'll notice, the Strida is much less if purchased in Euros or British Pound Sterling.
    People keep blaming things on the falling dollar, but the dollar has been very strong lately (www.forexblog.org). Of course if Dahon, Bike Friday, Strida, etc signed all their contracts last year then that's not going to help them much, plus even if they could lower prices they'd more than likely just increase profits and blame it all on the "falling dollar" instead.

    Downtube looks to be keeping prices relatively stable as does Brompton (Pacific is hard to say as they haven't released prices for the 08 bikes yet...probably because of all the volatility in the currency markets). Time will tell if these companies managed to weather the dollar droop, but even if they have they could decide to raise prices anyway if they aren't siphoning off enough customers from the higher priced competition.

    Now that the public has ingrained in their heads that the dollar is weak companies can raise prices without reserve while feigning the innocent victim of economic malaise. Of course people are going to buy what they can afford either way, but "innocent victim" is a better public image for a company than "profiteer".

    Come on folks let's shop smart and reign in this weak dollar nonsense. Buy folders from companies which have managed to navigate through the downturn without sticking it to their customers and all the prices will go back down.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve View Post
    2. High Energy Cost --- This no doubt increasing prices in food, clothing etc. Add to this list bicycles.
    I personally have not seen all this supposed inflation hit food, clothing, etc, but I buy locally grown food from merchants that are mostly immigrants...so there might be a lag relative to Walmart whose executives no doubt keep a very close eye on Wall Street, but if the lag is great enough I hope to never deal with significant price increases at all.

    Also, as I said before, not all bikes have skyrocketed in price. Brompton and Downtube have experienced only minor increases (and even those are supposedly "upgrades").

    Quote Originally Posted by chainstrainer View Post
    I'm not sure that squeaky belts are any less annoying than all the whining about the Strida. Here's a suggestion: Buy something else.
    I did too. And so did a few other forum members who bought knockoffs (and reported good quality).

    See, jur? It's not the great demand that's driving the prices up and based on the unanimous whining I don't think that demand will be increasing any time soon.
    Last edited by makeinu; 09-19-08 at 07:45 AM.

  19. #19
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    Not sure about USA, but in UK Strida is actually good value, it costs the same or less than the usual suspects, and Strida.nl (who now cover all Europe) cant get enough. It is also a huge hit in the far east, where it also outsells most others several fold.

    We are all 'fan boys' to some extent, but why is it that people here become so partisan when it comes to Strida ? Strida is mucho appreciated by we who use it day in day out and really enjoy it (and have done for years). I've got several bikes and Strida will be one of the last I would be without.

  20. #20
    pooh bear joose's Avatar
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    Looking forward to trying them. I'm a big fan of Strida and also other products that simplify life ... as in the 'Simple ... ' tag. Simple, effective things like iphones, B&O audio, and even schlumpf and belt drives actually take a lot of unseen work behind the scenes (eg software development and re-inventing how they are constructed, etc etc).

    Not sure about USA, but in UK Strida is actually good value, it costs the same or less than the usual suspects, and Strida.nl (who now cover all Europe) cant get enough. It is also a huge hit in the far east, where it also outsells most others several fold.

    We are all 'fan boys' to some extent, but why is it that people here become so partisan when it comes to Strida ? Strida is mucho appreciated by we who use it day in day out and really enjoy it (and have done for years). I've got several bikes and Strida will be one of the last I would be without.


    I'm in agreement with just about everything you have said on this topic Simple Simon and the Strida III was my first choice for my commute to work before I 'settled' for a D3 Curve (due to my work's lack of choice from their Cycle To Work scheme supplier). However, I'm not convinced that the benefits outweigh the costs? I do hope that the bike becomes more popular and moves out of the 'specialist' section of folding bike owners and with that, becomes cheaper. I think my frustration comes mainly from not being about to afford a product, which like the others you mentioned, iphone etc would make my life genuinely better. I'm a person who believes in a balanced product is better than the highest spec's product eg, what's the point in putting a Ferrari gearbox in my Ford Ka? I know there will be many hidden costs a simpleton like myself will not of considered but I think that the Strida is now being marketed as a 'lifestyle' product, rather than a utility vehicle which it is which means the price is more because it's planned that way (just like Apple products which it upspec's or discontinues rather than let the percieved premium of the brand fall. Which makes good business sense but is stopping alot of people buying this great product.

    You know, after all my moaning I still want one. I'm resigned to try and pick up a cheap one second hand somewhere...

  21. #21
    Celebrate Diversity! JSnow789's Avatar
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    The only regret I have with my Strida purchase is that I seem to have the only one in Chicago-since none of the LBS around me have ever seen one. I dread having to get parts for it. I'm pretty excited about the new accessories-but the #1 accessory I want is multiple speeds. But I love it and love riding it. Especially on great, fall days like today!
    'Life isn't about how to survive the storm, but how to dance in the rain.'

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    jur
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    Quote Originally Posted by makeinu View Post
    See, jur? It's not the great demand that's driving the prices up and based on the unanimous whining I don't think that demand will be increasing any time soon.
    I didn't say it was supply/demand. I said they ask for it what they think the buyers will pay. That's different. It's a marketer's issue, and they obviously made a mistake - the buyers won't pay what they think.

    As for competition, there is none in the Strida sphere. Except for that knockoff which is not available in the west AFAIK, there are no other Strida-like bikes. There are other folders but they are strictly speaking not in the same niche - they appeal to a very narrow niche of people who like the looks and who need it for a very specific use. It's ridiculous for example to think the Strida and the BF compete against each other. They don't - they are waaaaaaaay too different. So the marketers think, "right, is there something like this over here? No? OK, it's a specialised niche product, we might not sell many, so we'll have to make a lot of profit on each bike to make it worth our effort." Not rocket science.

    As for the weight argument, it holds. One of the major items that contribute to mass are the wheels, and the Strida wheels are heavy especially with those one-sided axles. Remember the tyres too. They may look light due to their size but they're not. All the other bits are run-of-the-mill and also contribute their part. It's not rocket science, the weight comes from somewhere and while the frame plays its very important part it is not more than 2-3kg.
    Last edited by jur; 09-19-08 at 02:40 PM.
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  23. #23
    lube addict
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    Quote Originally Posted by joose View Post
    I'm in agreement with just about everything you have said on this topic Simple Simon and the Strida III was my first choice for my commute to work before I 'settled' for a D3 Curve (due to my work's lack of choice from their Cycle To Work scheme supplier). However, I'm not convinced that the benefits outweigh the costs? I do hope that the bike becomes more popular and moves out of the 'specialist' section of folding bike owners and with that, becomes cheaper. I think my frustration comes mainly from not being about to afford a product, which like the others you mentioned, iphone etc would make my life genuinely better. I'm a person who believes in a balanced product is better than the highest spec's product eg, what's the point in putting a Ferrari gearbox in my Ford Ka? I know there will be many hidden costs a simpleton like myself will not of considered but I think that the Strida is now being marketed as a 'lifestyle' product, rather than a utility vehicle which it is which means the price is more because it's planned that way (just like Apple products which it upspec's or discontinues rather than let the percieved premium of the brand fall. Which makes good business sense but is stopping alot of people buying this great product.

    You know, after all my moaning I still want one. I'm resigned to try and pick up a cheap one second hand somewhere...
    The Strida appears to be marketed and priced differently in the U.S. than places like Asia or Europe for reasons I'm sure market research folks can expound upon. So the Strida is distributed by a niche product design company, not a known sporting goods or bike company, and is sold through the MoMa and Design Within Reach catalogs. Someone probably thought the unique design could become iconic, possessing enough cachet potential to warrant a boutique pricing scheme that might appeal to a certain fashion demographic that did not necessarily include practical-minded commuters, young college kids or serious cyclists on a budget. It is sad I think because this situation is at odds with Mark Sander's original intent in his early Strida work.

    Buying used is an alternative, if you can find one. In the U.S. they are extremely rare, new or used, evidently by marketing intent.

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    Two Speed --46.5 and 76.7 Gear Inches
    Vs.
    Single Speed -52 Gear Inches

    http://areaware.com/catalog/StridaCatalog_2008.pdf

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    BTW, there's no Strida 3 on the Catalog so... do I have a classic bike?

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