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Folding Bikes Discuss the unique features and issues of folding bikes. Also a great place to learn what folding bike will work best for your needs.

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Old 09-02-10, 02:56 AM   #1
funkyflash5
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Another noob, a unique situation

It looks as though I may have just gotten myself a job, or at least the potential for one, working as a musician on a cruise ship. This has led me to decide, that if I do get the job, I'll replace my broken down old beast with a folding bike that I could take with me. The question then is the standard one, which bike should I get?

I'd like for it to pack down small to take with me on the fights to and from the ship, and for storing in my cabin, but would like it to be able to handle anything I'd throw at it in a port of call, which could be anywhere at this point.

Also, I'll probably have to order something completely stock, because the turn around time between knowing if I've got the gig and leaving for it could be rather small.

My current pick is the Dahon JetStream P8, but is there an other bike in a similar price bracket that would be better?

Thanks in advance
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Old 09-02-10, 03:28 AM   #2
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I'd like for it to pack down small to take with me on the fights to and from the ship
That's quite a dramatic line of business! You wouldn't happen to be working on pirate ship, would you?
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Old 09-02-10, 03:45 AM   #3
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If you are travelling on airlines a lot, and paying for your access baggage, you may want to ensure that it fits into an airline legal bag. This might help (if it's a dahon you are buying)

http://www.dahon.com/accessories/2008/airporter-mini

http://www.dahon.com/accessories/200...orter-suitcase

http://www.gaerlan.com/dahon/pack.htm
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Old 09-02-10, 06:28 AM   #4
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A Birdy is generally a bit easier to get into a suitcase than a Dahon. I have't seen a Jetstream suitcase demo yet - so it may be hard or hardly possible.

Bike Fridays specialize in getting into a suitcase.
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Old 09-02-10, 06:58 AM   #5
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Welcome to the forum. If you want a small solid bike consider the CarryMe, small wheeled motorbikes in ports are very common because of the small size, this is a similar concept, I only just started commuting on it (8km) in the rough London streets and I average about 24km/h hitting a max of 36km/h

More info:
http://www.pacific-cycles.com/produc...?cat1=1&cat2=7
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Old 09-02-10, 10:20 AM   #6
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You should look into the Dahon Curve. It will be easier to carry and take with you on your travels.
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Old 09-02-10, 11:10 AM   #7
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It would help your decision-making process greatly if you could try the bike before buying it. And you should think about what's more important to you--compactness vs. ride quality, along with other factors. For example, in my experience Dahons have a nice compact fold but my Speed P8 is a more fiddly and unforgiving to fold than I'd like. If my pedals are in the wrong position, I have to start over, the magnets can be a little funky to join up, you have to move the cables out of the way, etc. I found the Downtubes I owned had much quicker folds, although the Downtube 8H made a clumsy and awkward package. My Swift folds quickly and far exceeds the Downtubes and Dahons in ride quality/speed, but it's not a compact fold. Etc.

If you're in New York City, we have bfold and NYCE Wheels, which specialize in folders, and many bike shops carry at least a few Dahons.

Since you're looking to take the bike in an airline legal suitcase, you'll need one with 20" wheels or smaller to make it fit.
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Old 09-02-10, 10:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jur View Post
Bike Fridays specialize in getting into a suitcase.
Yep. They also specialize in handling anything you throw at them.

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Originally Posted by Folding-Bikes View Post
If you want a small solid bike consider the CarryMe
He's looking for a bike which can handle any port of call. This is *not* a CarryMe.

Bike Friday may be your best choice. But given a musician's budget, a medium-end Dahon may be your only realistic choice.
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Old 09-02-10, 11:41 PM   #9
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Yep.

He's looking for a bike which can handle any port of call. This is *not* a CarryMe.

Bike Friday may be your best choice. But given a musician's budget, a medium-end Dahon may be your only realistic choice.
Yes, and a steel bike will suit him just fine..


The reason I wrote to consider the CarryMe is because small wheeled folding bikes are very popular in ports, actually probably more popular than full size bikes, Oh and its made of aluminium.

Little quick research;

Simply writing "boat + bike" on google brings this up:

http://alchemy2009.blogspot.com/2009...rrow-boat.html


"Many cruisers, therefore, choose to bring bicycles aboard. A popular choice is a small-wheeled folding bike, for compactness and ease of transport to and from shore.

A problem, of course, is corrosion. Keeping the ferrous bits of a bike rust-free without getting oil on the deck is a challenge, as it keeping them out of the sea itself if stowed, as is typical, on the rail and not down below. As long as the bike is made entirely of aluminum, it's good. This is rare, however, and can be very expensive, as welds in this metal are tricky.

The folding aspect is one thing (particularly on a small boat...that bike could lash to the mast easily). But the main objection remains corrosion. Our current, if subject to revision, opinion on shoreside bikes is NOT to bring them with us, despite having the space and even the inclination to do so.
"

Last edited by Folding-Bikes; 09-02-10 at 11:49 PM.
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Old 09-03-10, 12:06 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Folding-Bikes View Post
Welcome to the forum. If you want a small solid bike consider the CarryMe, small wheeled motorbikes in ports are very common because of the small size, this is a similar concept, I only just started commuting on it (8km) in the rough London streets and I average about 24km/h hitting a max of 36km/h

More info:
http://www.pacific-cycles.com/produc...?cat1=1&cat2=7
Sounds like the Carryme also has a machine powering it lol!
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Old 09-03-10, 01:28 AM   #11
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Your choice of a Dahon Jetstream P8 is a good one if you also intend to cycle off-road. Jefmcg's recommendation of a Dahoh Airporter suitcase is a must for you.

The main contender would be a Pacific Reach IF mode which also has suspension and folds great but that may be outside the budget?
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Old 09-03-10, 07:31 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Folding-Bikes View Post
Yes, and a steel bike will suit him just fine..
True enough. He needs an aluminum Dahon.

Quote:
The reason I wrote to consider the CarryMe is because small wheeled folding bikes are very popular in ports, actually probably more popular than full size bikes, Oh and its made of aluminium.
The CarryMe is probably not reasonable for environments with, shall we say, nonstandard riding surfaces. "Rough London Streets" made me start laughing, having recently spent quite a while riding on this in Rome.

Last edited by feijai; 09-03-10 at 07:35 AM.
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Old 09-03-10, 09:13 AM   #13
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Given your requirements, and assuming you're talking about relatively short hops (30 mile rides or less), I recommend a Brompton.

- Packing most folding bikes for air travel is time-consuming and a bit messy. The Brompton has the most compact fold, and will require minimal work to get it into a suitcase.
- Due to said small fold, it will take up the least amount of space in your cabin (which, by the way, I'd expect to be rather small)
- It's also easier to take the Brompton into a restaurant or other establishment than most folding bikes.
- The Brompton probably can't handle serious offroad, but should be able to work just fine for any normal streets or roads.
- Last but not least, they are readily available without waiting or customization.

Of course, you could just rent bikes at the ports of call, which will require a lot less effort and will probably cost about the same as buying a new bike....
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Old 09-03-10, 10:04 AM   #14
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The CarryMe is probably not reasonable for environments with, shall we say, nonstandard riding surfaces. "Rough London Streets" made me start laughing, having recently spent quite a while riding on this in Rome.




Yep, we have the weather too.
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Old 09-03-10, 11:00 AM   #15
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A Dahon Mariner for the corrosion factor? http://www.thorusa.com/dahon/current/marinerd7.htm
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Old 09-03-10, 12:48 PM   #16
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Quick summary ...........
Brompton good small fold, small fit however, Mezzo rides bigger folds slightly bigger, less good on the rough, birdie better than most except the jetstream on the rough, folds smaller than the jetstream, but bigger folded than Mezzo or brompton. Dahon Curve tad bigger than Brompton folded, but rides better on rough,more of a pain to fold. Diblasi best bike to fold, availalbe in rust free SS but expensive for poor quality components. Downtube all models ride well fold about the same as the Dahon range, but cheaper. However downtube full suspension is no where near the quality of the Jetstream. Old moulton seperable difficult to find quickly, ride well, tad heavy,ride well on rough. Zoot Swift folds quite large, but thin, quality ride. Bike friday rides well, and specialize in fitting in a suitcase. Airimals are also good at later .IMO of course.......

Last edited by bhkyte; 09-03-10 at 12:54 PM.
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Old 09-03-10, 08:35 PM   #17
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Thanks for all the replies, this is exactly what I was looking for.

I'm still leaning towards the jetstream, because I do intend to take it on the trails, at the very least when I 'm home, and I don't think something like the carryme would enjoy 600 foot bluffs and I intend for whatever I pick to replace my current bike, cause it's falling to bits.
and if money wasn't an issue I would love to go with a Bike friday but......

What I'm still wondering about weather people think the steel vs aluminum issue will matter, cause I'll be on a cruise ship, which makes me think I won't store it anywhere near the corrosive saltwater, like it would be on the boat in the linked site. but is it better safe than sorry, or should I just go with the features I really want (aka suspension)?
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Old 09-04-10, 12:32 AM   #18
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Salt spray: it's just in there air. Cars in beach side towns tend to rust more than those in inland cities (at least in places without snow, so they don't get salt on them).

And I can see the pockmarked railings on the beach house we used to stay in as kids. Though that was aluminium as I recall, so it's not perfect.

None of this would be a factor for a single cruise, but your bikes going to be a salty atmosphere for months or even years.

btw you could ask someone from the cruise line. They'd know more than us.
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