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  1. #1
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    BEST 2009 folders under $300

    Would like to create a list of the best 2009 folders under $300...
    any opinions?

  2. #2
    New usename ThorUSA brakemeister's Avatar
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    oxymoron : best and under 300

    best under 500 would make much more sense

    thor

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    ok, then most decent one around $300.

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    Senior Member edwong3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PIZZ View Post
    Would like to create a list of the best 2009 folders under $300...
    any opinions?
    This one (TEK 101) from eBay is relatively unknown, but with a 21 speed drivetrain for $249.00 it looks like a contender for the "under $300 category".

    http://cgi.ebay.com/TEK-101-Folding-...d=p3286.c0.m14

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder

  5. #5
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    I think under $500 would be better as for under $300 , I dont know of any.
    Speed Uno
    Dawes Kingpin 2speed

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    I would say the Dahon Boardwalk S1 and the Citizen Miami and Gotham.

    All under $300 base price.

  7. #7
    Senior Member edwong3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PIZZ View Post
    I would say the Dahon Boardwalk S1 and the Citizen Miami and Gotham.

    All under $300 base price.
    You might as well add the Schwinn "Hinge", and the Schwinn "Loop" too. Both bikes have enjoyed good reviews by their respective buyers. They both sell close to $200 give or take.

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder

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    Quote Originally Posted by PIZZ View Post
    I would say the Dahon Boardwalk S1 and the Citizen Miami and Gotham.

    All under $300 base price.
    Here's the complaint: "best folder under $300" is like saying "best car made in Yugoslavia". It's a logically valid statement to make, but it implies that such a thing would have even a modicum of quality. Which it won't.

    There are few decent regular bikes under $300. And folders are more complex devices than regular bikes, with a bit higher cost as a result. If you're restricting yourself to under $300 for a folding bike, you will get what you pay for.

  9. #9
    Senior Member edwong3's Avatar
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    I see where this is going! Let me jump in and say my 2 cents! The OP is asking about good folders selling for under $300, and not asking to compare them with higher end models. I think the question is valid, and we're all smart enough to know the differences. However in this price point, especially between $200 and $300, we do find some of the best values in cycling per dollar where the product is good enough to provide a level of satisfactory use and performance. Sure you can spend 4 times as much on a high end brand, and usually it is of higher quality, better performing, etc...but you won't wind up with a bike that's 4 times "better" because of the "law of diminishing returns".

    To insinuate that you can't find a quality folder for under $300 is reeking of "elitism" that kills some of the fun of participating on this forum. And it is rare to see attacks coming from the budget conscious side as they would have jumped on the threads talking about the cracks on the BF Tikit frames or failing latches on the Dahons. Surely these bikes should have a "modicum of quality" but they can still malfunction, even catastrophically...right?

    Off my podium.

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder



    Quote Originally Posted by feijai View Post
    Here's the complaint: "best folder under $300" is like saying "best car made in Yugoslavia". It's a logically valid statement to make, but it implies that such a thing would have even a modicum of quality. Which it won't.

    There are few decent regular bikes under $300. And folders are more complex devices than regular bikes, with a bit higher cost as a result. If you're restricting yourself to under $300 for a folding bike, you will get what you pay for.
    Last edited by edwong3; 07-28-09 at 05:49 PM.

  10. #10
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    Have you looked at the new 16" Kent offerings on ridethisbike?
    Both are under $300, one under $200
    The Nexus IGH one looks nice to me.
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    Good point edwong3. I suppose if you are going to use it heavily then you want a better quality bike and maybe have to pay a little more. But for the someone like me who would probably use for the occasional weekend trip, 4 or 5 times a month if that, I think there are enough under the $300-400 price range that would suit just fine.
    Last edited by PIZZ; 07-28-09 at 07:57 PM.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by PIZZ View Post
    Would like to create a list of the best 2009 folders under $300...
    any opinions?
    My current opinion on the best [in the U.S.A.] 2009 model folder for less than $300?
    1. Used 2009 Dahon ECO D3
    2. New 2009 Dahon Boardwalk
    Subject to change, of course.

  13. #13
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    Not under $300, but the Downtube 9FS is now on sale for $349. Quite the bargain IMHO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by edwong3 View Post
    The OP is asking about good folders selling for under $300, and not asking to compare them with higher end models. I think the question is valid, and we're all smart enough to know the differences. However in this price point, especially between $200 and $300, we do find some of the best values in cycling per dollar where the product is good enough to provide a level of satisfactory use and performance
    I might agree with you, Ed, but at this moment my "value" folder is unrideable, and I can't find a value component (a rear wheel) to put it back in rideable condition. So is this "good enough"?

  15. #15
    Senior Member edwong3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PIZZ View Post
    Good point edwong3. I suppose if you are going to use it heavily then you want a better quality bike and maybe have to pay a little more. But for the someone like me who would probably use for the occasional weekend trip, 4 or 5 times a month if that, I think there are enough under the $300-400 price range that would suit just fine.
    Yes there are PLENTY of decent bikes in that price range that can do more than just "occasional" riding, and if you increase that range to $400 then your possible selections increase even more.

    Here are some more bikes to add to the list including up to the $400 range:

    Kent Compact 3 Speed 16 inch $259.99 Shipping Included or $279.99 With Carrying Bag-Shipping Included

    http://ridethisbike.com/products/Ken...lding-bike.htm

    SRS 6 Speed 20 inch Bike $279

    http://cgi.ebay.com/SRS-BIKE-20-SHIM...d=p3286.c0.m14

    TEK 201 24 Speed 20 inch $399

    http://cgi.ebay.com/TEK-201-Folding-...d=p3286.c0.m14

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder

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    Quote Originally Posted by edwong3 View Post
    To insinuate that you can't find a quality folder for under $300 is reeking of "elitism" that kills some of the fun of participating on this forum.
    Let me get out my monocle then.

    I think the best *value* folding bikes are in the medium-low-end Dahon/Downtube range, that is, somewhere around $500. I believe that under $300 or so, the value of many bikes starts dropping precipitously: the bike is cheaper, but the quality is much cheaper still, clear down to the point where they're not safe to ride. It's not a linear decrease. Folding bikes are even more subject to this effect. If you must buy a cheap bike, so be it, but understand that a folding bike at $250 isn't half the bike of a $500 one: it's maybe a quarter of that bike. It's probably smarter to get something that doesn't fold.

  17. #17
    Senior Member edwong3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCFlack View Post
    I might agree with you, Ed, but at this moment my "value" folder is unrideable, and I can't find a value component (a rear wheel) to put it back in rideable condition. So is this "good enough"?
    I was reading about your predicament "JC" and I know that you're in between a "rock and a hard place" with regards to that rear wheel. But regardless of what anyone says, a wheel can crap out on a bike of any price range. In fact, one unfortunate fellow had a $449 rear Aerospoke literally shatter on his Gold Rush Replica recumbent and he wasn't even pushing his bike hard when it happened.

    Aerospoke is a line of high tech composite wheels that don't use regular steel spokes, and the idea is for "better reliability". Yea right! Thank goodness this didn't happen while going down a hill at 40+ MPH! He might not have lived to tell the story on the recumbent newsgroup. Of course it may have been replaced under warranty. Isn't your bike still under warranty? Have you called Citizenbike to see what they can do for you?

    But don't blame the problem on the low retail price of your bike. Remember there are many Citizenbike folders on the streets and roads that haven't had this issue.

    Good luck with finding an appropriate replacement either in the form of a new rear wheel or an entirely new bike.

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder

    P.S. If you decide you want to replace your bike altogether, and can't source that Dahon D3 for some reason, look at the Kent 3 Speed bike we mentioned elsewhere on this thread.

  18. #18
    in cog neato itsmoot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by edwong3 View Post
    Yes there are PLENTY of decent bikes in that price range that can do more than just "occasional" riding, and if you increase that range to $400 then your possible selections increase even more.

    Here are some more bikes to add to the list including up to the $400 range:

    Kent Compact 3 Speed 16 inch $259.99 Shipping Included or $279.99 With Carrying Bag-Shipping Included

    http://ridethisbike.com/products/Ken...lding-bike.htm

    SRS 6 Speed 20 inch Bike $279

    http://cgi.ebay.com/SRS-BIKE-20-SHIM...d=p3286.c0.m14

    TEK 201 24 Speed 20 inch $399

    http://cgi.ebay.com/TEK-201-Folding-...d=p3286.c0.m14

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder
    So you have no trouble recomending those SRS or TEK bikes, despite never having ridden or even seen one? The seller's policies of "No returns accepted" not a problem?

    Sheesh, anyone need a bridge?

    edit: BTW Ed, the expression is "get off the soapbox", not "off the podium". You've been watching too much TDF coverage
    Last edited by itsmoot; 07-29-09 at 12:14 AM.
    I have the heart of a young boy. I got it on eBay.

  19. #19
    Senior Member edwong3's Avatar
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    My apologies to the OP for hi jacking his thread although I humbly believe I did contribute plenty towards what he was asking for and that was to point out some of the better bikes in the $300 or less price range. His question was not to attempt to name which are the "best" bikes overall, and then find out if there are any that sell for less than $300. Even I caught on to that, and I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed if you catch my drift. I believe we are smart enough to know that a $500 bike will usually represent a higher quality than a $250 but that is not what the OP was questioning.

    Second of all, now you are making an unsubstantiated claim that just because a folder sells for less than X amount of dollars, that it is automatically "unsafe" to ride. Well at $109.99, I should have killed myself many thousands of miles ago on my cheap, and crappy eBay bought Chinese made folder! And I have ridden this thing in all conditions, and yet I've always felt safe on that bike. It is stable, handles well, and the brakes stop the bike with authority.

    I don't buy your assertion that a $500 bike is 4 times more bike than a $250. In fact according to an acquaintance of mine who owns 4 bike shops here in Orlando, the "pivot point" if you want to call it that where you get the most bike for the dollar, ends at $350. From that point on, for each dollar you spend, you get less and less bike. When you go past the $1,000 or more range, then you spend $100's more just to get a marginal increase in perceived quality or performance.

    I could go on an on but it's getting late, and I have a life outside of this forum.

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder







    Quote Originally Posted by feijai View Post
    Let me get out my monocle then.

    I think the best *value* folding bikes are in the medium-low-end Dahon/Downtube range, that is, somewhere around $500. I believe that under $300 or so, the value of many bikes starts dropping precipitously: the bike is cheaper, but the quality is much cheaper still, clear down to the point where they're not safe to ride. It's not a linear decrease. Folding bikes are even more subject to this effect. If you must buy a cheap bike, so be it, but understand that a folding bike at $250 isn't half the bike of a $500 one: it's maybe a quarter of that bike. It's probably smarter to get something that doesn't fold.

  20. #20
    Senior Member edwong3's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by itsmoot View Post
    So you have no trouble recomending those SRS or TEK bikes, despite never having ridden or even seen one? The seller's policies of "No returns accepted" not a problem?

    Sheesh, anyone need a bridge?

    edit: BTW Ed, the expression is "get off the soapbox", not "off the podium". You've been watching too much TDF coverage
    Actually I don't know why I used the word "podium". It should have been "soapbox". Ironically I don't watch the TDF.

    And you question me recommending these bikes without having seen or ridden one. Well some of you don't seem to have a problem to dismiss some of these bikes as being inadequate without seeing one yourself. What's the problem?

    And if you have a cheap bridge I'm interested

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder
    Last edited by edwong3; 07-29-09 at 12:37 AM.

  21. #21
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    $300 is alot to most people, especially to spend on a bike. I would buy the Dahon in that range since the frame is solid and the components seem to be more reliable than smaller companies in that range.
    Why buy 10 cheap bikes when one nice one will last longer!

  22. #22
    in cog neato itsmoot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by edwong3 View Post
    Well some of you don't seem to have a problem to dismiss some of these bikes as being inadequate without seeing one yourself. What's the problem?
    I'm not dismissing anything. I question the validity of recommending eBay items to others based solely on specs and price. And the seller's complete lack of a return policy is a BIG red flag.

    And JMHO, a triple crank on a bike with a short chainline (that 21-speed) is asking for trouble.

    Quote Originally Posted by edwong3 View Post
    My apologies to the OP for hi jacking his thread although I humbly believe I did contribute plenty towards what he was asking for and that was to point out some of the better bikes in the $300 or less price range. His question was not to attempt to name which are the "best" bikes overall, and then find out if there are any that sell for less than $300. Even I caught on to that, and I'm not the sharpest tool in the shed if you catch my drift. etc
    Like herding cats. Folding cats

    <RESET>

    Quote Originally Posted by PIZZ View Post

    Title: BEST 2009 folders under $300

    Message: Would like to create a list of the best 2009 folders under $300...any opinions?
    Last edited by itsmoot; 07-29-09 at 01:43 AM.
    I have the heart of a young boy. I got it on eBay.

  23. #23
    BWP
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    My view -- plan for some end-user quality control and you can do fine below 300 US. This requires investing some time up-front and expecting a few post-purchase costs:

    * frame -- at the very low-end aim for a heavy build with sloppy but structurally sufficient welds and hinge -- closely inspect before purchase and/or at receipt
    * components -- at the very low-end plan to replace some due to early failure (pedals, levers, etc.) -- plan for $50 to $100 in costs above the purchase price of the bicyle
    * assembly -- no matter what, rebuild a lot of the bicycle yourself (tighten/true wheels, reconnect cables, etc., etc., etc.) before the first ride

    If you do these things you can cover for a lot of the skimping that gets a bicycle to market in this price range. I agree with the general brand guidance from earlier posters. Just be sure to spend some time on the specific bike you are about to buy, and then some more after it's yours.

    Good luck!

  24. #24
    Senior Member edwong3's Avatar
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    Yes I looked again at that eBay listing and seen the "no return policy". It is a red flag but I limit that policy to that particular seller, and not the brand itself. But truthfully, I wouldn't buy a bike from that dealer under those conditions.

    By the way, you'll find triple crank drivetrains on well known marques like the Bikefriday NWT for example with no ill effects, as long as you don't cross the chain over extreme gear combinations (Small chainring to small cog, big chainring to large cog). If anything, this setup should work well for the TEK as it has an unusually long chainline for a compact bike due to the lengthy chainstays.

    Edward Wong III
    Qile Duo 5 Speed 20" Folder

    Quote Originally Posted by itsmoot View Post
    I'm not dismissing anything. I question the validity of recommending eBay items to others based solely on specs and price. And the seller's complete lack of a return policy is a BIG red flag.

    And JMHO, a triple crank on a bike with a short chainline (that 21-speed) is asking for trouble.



    Like herding cats. Folding cats

    <RESET>
    Last edited by edwong3; 07-29-09 at 08:52 AM.

  25. #25
    New usename ThorUSA brakemeister's Avatar
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    I can see both points ...... Its super tough to recomend something which one hasnt ridden for a extended peiod of time ..and I expect that you invest even300 dlr for a bike that you can find somebody at least partially feeling responsible when there is a problem. Most of those ebay bikes are a disaster waiting to happen.... They are made for the chinese market , are generally sized for much smaller people and I get emails to buy container loads for 75 bucks a pop every week.... And 75 dlr they are worth ....some of these bikes have "walked" out of the companies over there all by themselves .... shipping is usually way up there, and there is no duty/customs paid either ...I know of cases where the buyer got caught paying hundred of dlr late customs/duty fees ..or that the bike never arrived.... just to see the ebay seller vanish and starting a new outlet with a different name ...

    These bikes will work for a limited time , but than usually fall apart and it takes a skilled mechanic to keep them going

    A boardwalk is a good bike , not fancy but worth the money. One can find some older deals at Campingworld maybe, The Eco slightly higher than 300 is great .... I suggest at the time to have that bike at a pricepoint of 299 instead of 370 isch .... but the lesser quality components this would have meant wasnt worth the savings.... you get a lot of bike at Dahon cause they get their parts for much less money than most other folding bike companies ( simply casuse they buy a lot more )

    Anyhow .... there is always the chance you find a cool raleigh 20 or a barely used Dahon ......


    keep looking
    thor

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