Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 16 of 16
  1. #1
    Senior Member CabezaShok's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    The Angels
    Posts
    281
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Folding bike commuter newb in L.A....

    Hi, 1st post here, its so awesome to find a folding bike forum with so much knowledge. So I have a Montague Paratrooper frame that id like to build up as a lightweight SS commuter for the streets of L.A. So far my current parts budget is approaching the the price of a Swift Folder. The Swift looks like it folds into a smaller package (not sure tho) which could make it easier to take it with me aboard buses and trains. Does anyone know if LA transit will accept my bagged and folded Montague bike as luggage? My Montague's weight should be well below 25 lbs. (w/ riggid fork) but the size when folded could be a problem?

    Anyone?

  2. #2
    Member davecriswell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Lafayette, CO
    My Bikes
    Serotta, Trek, Felt, Scott, Montague
    Posts
    25
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I can't comment on The LA system but I regularly take mine (Montague SwissBike frame) on the MBTA in Boston with no problems.
    "Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go" - T.S. Eliot
    flavors.me/davecriswell
    TrainingPeaks.com

  3. #3
    Banned. folder fanatic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Anti Social Media-Land
    Posts
    3,078
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by CabezaShok View Post
    Hi, 1st post here, its so awesome to find a folding bike forum with so much knowledge. So I have a Montague Paratrooper frame that id like to build up as a lightweight SS commuter for the streets of L.A. So far my current parts budget is approaching the the price of a Swift Folder. The Swift looks like it folds into a smaller package (not sure tho) which could make it easier to take it with me aboard buses and trains. Does anyone know if LA transit will accept my bagged and folded Montague bike as luggage? My Montague's weight should be well below 25 lbs. (w/ riggid fork) but the size when folded could be a problem?

    Anyone?
    I live and work in the Los Angeles Metro (MTA) area. If your Montague bike is folded up in the smallest way for that bike and bagged, no one should pay much attention to it. I have seem people lugged some huge size junk aboard buses. The light rail & subway is another matter. Sometimes people still jam their possessions onto the trains, clogging up the aisles, and sometimes they cannot (security is out and about checking for fare payment). I don't much care for taking my folding bikes with me anymore if I can avoid it. Too much crowding & too much hassle. If I do have to take one of them with me, I prefer my Brompton (chosen especially for that reason).

  4. #4
    Stooges Woman
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    The achingly beautiful San Fernando Valley
    My Bikes
    Electra Townie, Schwinn Loop. Schwinn Hinge
    Posts
    131
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Ditto to folder fanatic. I used to take the subway ("Red Line") to work every day from North Hollywood to Downtown. You will actually have better luck bringing your bagged folder onto the train than you would if it were a regular bike - those tend to get kicked off during rush hours.

    If your bag can fit under your seat during those times, so much the better, though if I were you I'd keep your eyes (and at least one hand) on it at all times.

    Be aware, though, that although most stations have elevators and escalators between the streets and the platforms, these tend to break down. A Lot. And usually at peak hours. So don't carry anything with you that you're not prepared to carry up a looooonnnnggg flight of stairs.

  5. #5
    I... Don't care. nekohime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Sunny SoCal
    Posts
    1,279
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by stoogeswoman View Post
    Ditto to folder fanatic. I used to take the subway ("Red Line") to work every day from North Hollywood to Downtown. You will actually have better luck bringing your bagged folder onto the train than you would if it were a regular bike - those tend to get kicked off during rush hours.

    If your bag can fit under your seat during those times, so much the better, though if I were you I'd keep your eyes (and at least one hand) on it at all times.

    Be aware, though, that although most stations have elevators and escalators between the streets and the platforms, these tend to break down. A Lot. And usually at peak hours. So don't carry anything with you that you're not prepared to carry up a looooonnnnggg flight of stairs.

    Oh yes, this was one of my many annoyances as a folding bike commuter making the loooooong-ass trip from El Monte station to UCLA via bus and Red/Purple line.

    To answer the OP...technically you can bring a folded Montague onto public transit, especially if it's bagged, but I don't know if you would want to that. It seems a little too big and unwieldy for that purpose, especially if you're gonna ride the crowded buses like the 720/920 along Wilshire. Plus I am under the impression that it does not fold very quickly, a must if you need to hustle to catch a bus or train.

    I used to ride the El Monte-Downtown bus with a guy commuting on a yellow Montague of some sort, but he would never fold it and instead just left it on the front rack of the bus. Me, I'd fold my 16in foldies (Kent Ultralite, borrowed classic Dahon, and finally, Brompton) and just bring them in.
    Wanna join my charity folding bike ride? Sign-up here!
    Quote Originally Posted by AEO View Post
    you should learn to embrace change, and mock it's failings every step of the way :p

  6. #6
    Senior Member CabezaShok's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    The Angels
    Posts
    281
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    All great advice thanks! Im going to give it my best with the Montague, or until i can save up for something that folds more compact. Im also hoping to tow my longboard 13 miles to the beach from USC/Dodger Stadium. Route: Jefferson Blvd>Ballona Creek>Beach. i think the Montague will tow a longish trailer better since its got bigger wheels/frame, but im guessing here too.
    BTW I read a recent article that LA brass/city planners are trying to promote using folding bikes with transit system....wish i had it handy.

  7. #7
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    San Diego, CA, USA
    My Bikes
    Xootr Swift
    Posts
    23
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by CabezaShok View Post
    BTW I read a recent article that LA brass/city planners are trying to promote using folding bikes with transit system....wish i had it handy.
    The story I heard was that parking spaces for Park&Ride systems cost a bundle (like $30k per space), so the transit folk were looking into buying folding bikes to give/loan out to some of the people who rode the transit system all the time, and lived too-far-to-walk-but-not-too-far-to-bike from the transit stops, figuring that the person could then ride the bike to the bus/train/subway/dirigible stop, and take the bike on/with, and free up one of the precious parking spaces that way (put in those terms, even $1k for a bike to free up an otherwise $30k parking space seems like not a bad investment, if a little unorthodox).

    BTW, I heard this story from the LA bike shop where I got my Swift -- it had been their demonstrator (and was the only Swift they had in stock), and, so the story goes, had been loaned to the LA transit people, along with a Brompton, to help them test out this idea (seeing how they fit on public transit, how they rode, whether mortals could fold them, that sort of thing).
    Last edited by CarlRJ; 08-05-10 at 05:30 PM. Reason: forgot words

  8. #8
    Banned. folder fanatic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Anti Social Media-Land
    Posts
    3,078
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    A week or so ago, I was at a Gold Line train stop. I noticed a MTA booth with folding bikes surrounding it. I went over and talked with the staff there. It seems that MTA is gearing up to spread the word about folding bike usage instead of using regular bikes on the crowded system. I examined one of the folders close up (a Big Fish), and saw a Dahon Curve, Dahon Uno, and a few others on loan from Dahon or Giant. I filled out some questionnaires and left.

    The word is out-and the future is actually folding bikes onboard rather than fighting over limited space front bus racks or aisle clutter!

  9. #9
    member
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    southern California
    Posts
    134
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I'm looking forward to the completion of orange line. That would give me less than a mile from the north end, and work is just over a mile from one of the stops. We are planning on bringing our folders on the Metro to check out Ciclavia on Oct 10.

    Last year at the Amgen race expo in Pasadena, I think it was the LA Metro booth that had a raffle for a 3 speed boardwalk.

    Despite the fact that folders are allowed on buses at all times, I did have one driver make me unfold it and put it on the rack. I had the Metro guide with me, but she didn't care. I sent an email to Metro about this, and got a reply, and questions for more details on my bike.

    Here is the last message:
    Don't know if we answered you on this or not but one of my staff said this bike is made by Dahon and the same size. I don't know how well these bikes can go under the seat in a bus but our rules, as you know, are that folding bikes are allowed inside the bus. I will forward your comment to the SFV Service Sector for consideration. Thank you for notifying us.

    I now carry a bag to cover my bike to prevent this happening again.
    Burley Softride Samba
    Rans Screamer
    1997 Vision R44
    Novara buzz flyby
    1987 centurion ironman
    1999 specialized FSR XC comp

  10. #10
    Stooges Woman
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    The achingly beautiful San Fernando Valley
    My Bikes
    Electra Townie, Schwinn Loop. Schwinn Hinge
    Posts
    131
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Just out of curiosity, if you have a good bike and you're near enough to the Orange Line both from home and from work, why not just ride the bike on the adjoining bike path the whole way? I've ridden the O.L. a few times and it nearly drove me nuts - four built-in TVs blaring infomercials the whole trip, people crammed in like sardines, etc. - horribly uncomfortable! If I'd had a bike with me I'd have been off that bus so fast it'd make your head spin.

  11. #11
    member
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    southern California
    Posts
    134
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I've ridden the path next to the line and it seemed that more time was spent waiting for signals, than riding. At this time the north west extension of the Orange line is still under works. So for now, to ride the O.L. I have to ride away from home to catch a ride, then ride the additional distance again at the end. I don't care for the riding routes home from that location.

    If I'm riding my bike to work, I use a route on the streets nowhere near the Orange Line. They are large streets, but traffic isn't an issue between 4:30 and 5:30 in the morning. The time for my ride home is when school lets out, and I've had some problems with distracted parents in their SUV's. So, I take more side streets, or ride the bus home. I got a folder so I could take my bike on the bus with me. When the temps get into triple digits, I'd rather be on the bus. Having served in our military and been on three deployments, I know what it's like to really be crammed in like a sardine on a noisy transport for hours.

    The sad thing about the public transit options for my current commute at this time, is that it's actually faster to ride my bike then take the bus.
    Burley Softride Samba
    Rans Screamer
    1997 Vision R44
    Novara buzz flyby
    1987 centurion ironman
    1999 specialized FSR XC comp

  12. #12
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    96
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by CabezaShok View Post
    Hi, 1st post here, its so awesome to find a folding bike forum with so much knowledge. So I have a Montague Paratrooper frame that id like to build up as a lightweight SS commuter for the streets of L.A. So far my current parts budget is approaching the the price of a Swift Folder. The Swift looks like it folds into a smaller package (not sure tho) which could make it easier to take it with me aboard buses and trains. Does anyone know if LA transit will accept my bagged and folded Montague bike as luggage? My Montague's weight should be well below 25 lbs. (w/ riggid fork) but the size when folded could be a problem?

    Anyone?
    i don't understand why you'd need to bag your bike as long as it folds.

    i live in l.a. and take the bus to work then bike the rest of the way - been doing this for a few months now. i've only had one driver give me grief about my bike but i convinced her that as long as it's folded, it is okay. some drivers are more knowledgeable than others.

    i normally put my bike on the front rack unless it's dark out or the rack space is already taken in which case i fold it and carry it on - to the backs seats.

    when i ride the subway (red line), i normally search for the car with the space with no chairs. that's where a lot of the people with bikes go and there are no problems. on the gold line, i look for the single seats at the ends of the train so i don't need to fold it. but you can't have your bike behind the conductor's door though - i've been yelled at twice for that.

    i take my bike (vitesse) everywhere i go. for me, being hassled by it is merely a matter of outlook. driving a car has its own hassles. i'm happier with the "hassles" my bike has brought me. i was rarely happy with the hassles - traffic, car maintenance, etc. - i dealt with when driving my car.

  13. #13
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    96
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by stoogeswoman View Post
    Just out of curiosity, if you have a good bike and you're near enough to the Orange Line both from home and from work, why not just ride the bike on the adjoining bike path the whole way? I've ridden the O.L. a few times and it nearly drove me nuts - four built-in TVs blaring infomercials the whole trip, people crammed in like sardines, etc. - horribly uncomfortable! If I'd had a bike with me I'd have been off that bus so fast it'd make your head spin.
    i didn't realize there was a path next to the ol. i've never seen it - aside from when it's downtown, ela - it's just the street. never noticed anything going north to pasadena.

  14. #14
    Banned. folder fanatic's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Anti Social Media-Land
    Posts
    3,078
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by merry2 View Post
    i don't understand why you'd need to bag your bike as long as it folds.

    i live in l.a. and take the bus to work then bike the rest of the way - been doing this for a few months now. i've only had one driver give me grief about my bike but i convinced her that as long as it's folded, it is okay. some drivers are more knowledgeable than others.
    Simple: avoiding hassles along with an increasing chance of being bumped-i.e. being literally thrown off buses or trains at the discretion or whims of a bus driver or MTA official . You only been doing the multi-modal transit method-bike & mass transit combined-for a couple of months. I have been doing it for almost 7 years with a folding bike. And even before the purchase of my first folding bike, I have been on buses for most of my life on the MTA. I have seen the great changes that MTA and the neighboring transit companies are going through. That means that because of this increasing popularity or "discovery" by the people that once shunned mass transit, there is more crowding. And more crowding translates to already filled bike racks, impatient drivers trying to keep some sort of schedule (and might not wait for you to load/unload your bike), fighting over space onboard, or in the case of trains if you have not noticed the signs posted above the entry/exit doorways, new signs pointing to the center of the cabin to be further crammed with clogged uncomfortable to stand with no seats area. So.... I now practice bike or public transit. I ride my bike solely or use public transit solely. No more headaches trying to combine them. It simply does not work well here.

    Quote Originally Posted by merry2 View Post
    i normally put my bike on the front rack unless it's dark out or the rack space is already taken in which case i fold it and carry it on - to the backs seats.
    Assuming that the aisles are not clogged with possessions that people like to cart with them or just their big feet and you don't trip over them, fine. A better option is to use the handicapped/senior section by pushing up the seats and placing your bike in the front. Unless someone needs it (and obviously has preferred access to these seats), then this is the best place for large objects, which includes folding bikes.

    There have been cases of people pulling bikes off the racks that don't belong to them. I already had a couple of bus drivers telling me to bag the bike and keep it aboard with me. Please don't be lulled into a false security because "people" are supposed to be watching your bike. For the most part, they don't. And by the time you can get off the bus to give chase to the thief, he/she is long gone.

    Quote Originally Posted by merry2 View Post
    when i ride the subway (red line), i normally search for the car with the space with no chairs. that's where a lot of the people with bikes go and there are no problems. on the gold line, i look for the single seats at the ends of the train so i don't need to fold it. but you can't have your bike behind the conductor's door though - i've been yelled at twice for that.
    Again, you should look for the signs above the doors for the spots designated for large objects-which means folding bikes of all sizes. Stay away from the first train that the operator is on.

    Quote Originally Posted by merry2 View Post
    i take my bike (vitesse) everywhere i go. for me, being hassled by it is merely a matter of outlook. driving a car has its own hassles. i'm happier with the "hassles" my bike has brought me. i was rarely happy with the hassles - traffic, car maintenance, etc. - i dealt with when driving my car.
    There would be no problems if you use a slipcover-bagging takes too long-and cover your bike up before boarding any public transit vehicle. I make my own covers and don't have any problems being blocked by transit officials when I have to combine public transit with the bikes. I just have trouble finding room for the bikes in the "new normal" of sardine can-like mass transit.
    Last edited by folder fanatic; 08-14-10 at 09:49 PM.

  15. #15
    member
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    southern California
    Posts
    134
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    merry2, I believe only the Orange line in the San Fernando Valley has a bike path adjacent to the bus way.
    Burley Softride Samba
    Rans Screamer
    1997 Vision R44
    Novara buzz flyby
    1987 centurion ironman
    1999 specialized FSR XC comp

  16. #16
    Senior Member CabezaShok's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    The Angels
    Posts
    281
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Downtown LA bus and it gets packed

    I just had my 1st experience on Downtown LA bus and it gets packed with people when downtown-bound. I think i will only be able to fit a Strida folder or maybe a Brompton under my seat. Getting the folder in and out of the bus when packed looks tricky ......and loading the Montague folder is a pipe dream.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •