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Old 11-11-10, 10:08 AM   #1
vmaniqui
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In UK 20" Wheel is not a Folding Bike

strange as it seems but there is a new law in UK wherein the only folding bike they will consider when riding british railways is a 16inch wheel bike. good for brompton's business i may say.

http://atob.org.uk/why_fold.html

Free and unrestricted carriage on public transport (but note that as of 2010, this only applies to bikes with wheels smaller than 20-inch on British railways)


'As of 2010, bikes with wheels of 20-inch and above are no longer regarded as folding bikes, no matter how compact or clever the folding package."

since when was a folding bike considered a non-folding bike. that's why it folds..duhh...

Last edited by vmaniqui; 11-11-10 at 02:40 PM.
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Old 11-11-10, 10:46 AM   #2
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I saw this about that rule being changed.

http://www.bikeradar.com/news/articl...ng-bikes-28151
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Old 11-11-10, 10:59 AM   #3
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What bikes legal on a particular transit system doesn't affect the definition of folding bike. If you had a 700c bike that folded in two I still say that was a folding bike even if they kicked me off a train.
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Old 11-11-10, 11:43 AM   #4
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Well, if you can stuff it into the space between 2 back to back seats,
it should be fine as a peak hour bring aboard...
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Old 11-11-10, 11:58 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by folderfan550 View Post
I saw this about that rule being changed.

http://www.bikeradar.com/news/articl...ng-bikes-28151
30cm max folded width is pretty aggressive. Brompton is spec'ed as 27cm (coincident?).

I wonder what other vendors comply with the 90x70x30cm requirement.

Edit: having 15" width, Tikit is out. http://bikefriday.com/faq?question=1696

Last edited by kamtsa; 11-11-10 at 12:03 PM.
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Old 11-11-10, 02:38 PM   #6
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30cm max folded width is pretty aggressive. Brompton is spec'ed as 27cm (coincident?).

I wonder what other vendors comply with the 90x70x30cm requirement.

Edit: having 15" width, Tikit is out. http://bikefriday.com/faq?question=1696
that is what i am thinking. probably initiated or sponsored by brompton ? or they just want the people to buy english made brompton bike. certainly- is this pure coincident ?
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Old 11-11-10, 02:42 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by folderfan550 View Post
I saw this about that rule being changed.

http://www.bikeradar.com/news/articl...ng-bikes-28151
glad to know. i hope it stays and they keep on giving folding bike that welcome anytime status.
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Old 11-11-10, 09:26 PM   #8
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What bikes legal on a particular transit system doesn't affect the definition of folding bike. If you had a 700c bike that folded in two I still say that was a folding bike even if they kicked me off a train.
If I am in a legitimate hurry for getting to work on time to a medical/dental appointment, that last thing I need is being kicked off the train haggling over wheres and the hows of my folding bike's proper definition of what it is or if it is proper to include it on board. Yesterday I made a similar appointment to be at a certain place. I mostly chose to avoid taking my Brompton on-board either a train or bus if I can possibly do so to go to my destination-although private cars, or perhaps a taxi might be fine. I rode it there as it was a little bit over three miles from home. Since I was not on a strict timetable or schedule returning, I rode the bus back with my completely covered bike. There is a time and place to fully expose my little bike to the world. On the local light rail, commuter train, or buses is not the place to do it.

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Originally Posted by kamtsa View Post
30cm max folded width is pretty aggressive. Brompton is spec'ed as 27cm (coincident?).

I wonder what other vendors comply with the 90x70x30cm requirement.

Edit: having 15" width, Tikit is out. http://bikefriday.com/faq?question=1696
There is a trade off for most products and to be the best ridable folding bike, Bike Friday chose to concentrate on the ride rather than compactness.

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that is what i am thinking. probably initiated or sponsored by brompton ? or they just want the people to buy english made brompton bike. certainly- is this pure coincident ?
Actually, it is most likely severe crowding on the trains most everywhere is making the companies crack down on large parcels-including bikes of most sizes. Bromptons just creak by with it's extreme suitcase or briefcase square-ish package that can be tucked into the oddest nooks and crannies on-board.

Last edited by folder fanatic; 11-11-10 at 09:42 PM.
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Old 11-12-10, 07:58 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamtsa View Post
30cm max folded width is pretty aggressive. Brompton is spec'ed as 27cm (coincident?).

I wonder what other vendors comply with the 90x70x30cm requirement.
Off the top of my head:

The Mobiky Genius squeaks in, but not the Mobiky MY16.

Birdy & Frog are too wide.
BigFish is too long.
Dahon Curve is too wide.
Strida much too tall.
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Old 11-12-10, 08:01 AM   #10
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Actually, it is most likely severe crowding on the trains most everywhere is making the companies crack down on large parcels-including bikes of most sizes.
Cycling Plus magazine featured a cycling advocate that had fabricated a full size bicycle cut-out from cardboard. This was apparently perfectly within the rules to board transit with in the UK, since it wasn't an actual bicycle!
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Old 11-12-10, 08:41 AM   #11
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This is very interesting.

So apart from the Brompton, what else is lees than 30cm/12" wide?

I think the Dahon Mu uno is 1cm narrower than the Brompton (but this is relying upon the accuracy/honesty of manufacturers figures).
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Old 11-12-10, 08:47 AM   #12
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This is very interesting.

So apart from the Brompton, what else is lees than 30cm/12" wide?

I think the Dahon Mu uno is 1cm narrower than the Brompton (but this is relying upon the accuracy/honesty of manufacturers figures).
Guess none. Come to think of it, of all the bike manufacturers which one is made or based in England?
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Old 11-12-10, 08:54 AM   #13
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I think there must be more than just Brompton.

The Mu Uno is quoted as being 26cm wide (by Dahon). I have an IXFS and according to the D/T website it is 30cm wide so should just scrape in too.
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Old 11-12-10, 10:05 AM   #14
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This feels like a conspiracy that brompton has with the metro to block out all competitors! They know they're almost the smallest fold what easier way to kill off all competition? hahahah! they barely squeak by just to make you think the metro drew up those dimensions from the air.

ok i'll remove my tin foil hat now.
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Old 11-12-10, 04:03 PM   #15
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With care I can colapse (my wife's) Dahon Mu P8 to 29.8x65.4x79.5cm.

Kudos to Dahon for an honest 30x66x79cm marketed minimum size for this model. The fold & resultant dimensions would seem to be like the other Mu models, the Ecos, the Speeds, the Vitesse and the several private label machines they build for other companies.

So there apparently are quite a number of commonly available, modest cost bikes which will fit into the allowable 30x70x90cm envelope. Conspiracy myth: busted.

Last edited by tcs; 11-12-10 at 04:21 PM.
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Old 11-12-10, 04:44 PM   #16
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With care I can colapse (my wife's) Dahon Mu P8 to 29.8x65.4x79.5cm.

Kudos to Dahon for an honest 30x66x79cm marketed minimum size for this model. The fold & resultant dimensions would seem to be like the other Mu models, the Ecos, the Speeds, the Vitesse and the several private label machines they build for other companies.

So there apparently are quite a number of commonly available, modest cost bikes which will fit into the allowable 30x70x90cm envelope. Conspiracy myth: busted.
Not so easy. It's not about the folded size they are talking but the wheel size. So conspiracy theory - is still on.
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Old 11-12-10, 05:56 PM   #17
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Link in post #2: wheel size restriction was an error. Bikes must fit into 30x70x90cm.

BTW, I measure the overall outside diameter of the inflated stock factory tires on the Dahon P8 @ 19.6 inches...and that's "smaller than 20 inches".

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Old 11-12-10, 06:00 PM   #18
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Cycling Plus magazine featured a cycling advocate that had fabricated a full size bicycle cut-out from cardboard. This was apparently perfectly within the rules to board transit with in the UK, since it wasn't an actual bicycle!
Interesting. With this logic a split Moulton should also qualify as two unicycles.
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Old 11-13-10, 03:54 AM   #19
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This feels like a conspiracy that brompton has with the metro to block out all competitors! They know they're almost the smallest fold what easier way to kill off all competition? hahahah! they barely squeak by just to make you think the metro drew up those dimensions from the air.

ok i'll remove my tin foil hat now.
From the Bike Radar link:
Brompton Bicycle Ltd, who sponsor the Cycling by Train leaflet, had been horrified on hearing of the problem and also sprang into action to get things put right.

ATOC admit that the change was instigated by ATOC, not any bike manufacturer. Tinfoil hat is the right phrase.
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Old 11-13-10, 05:32 AM   #20
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I have owned lots of bikes and tried commuting with them all in the UK. I gave up commuting with my TR because in the end, it was just too big to commute with without being antisocial on jam packed commuter trains. But if not jam-packed, then any folder will do. Look at any commuter station in the south England, and you see lots of folders not just Bromptons.

Not averse to conspiracy theories myself, but the corporates who run the UK government these days are very very big, and a lot of them from outside the UK. So the idea that Brompton would be able to get this kind of influence is pretty laughable. That said, the loyalty to brompton is such is that if there was a brompton owning bureaucrat re-writing the rules it may be that she/he made sure that his/her own bike would be OK still.... that is more plausible imho...
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Old 11-13-10, 05:48 PM   #21
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Mr Conductor, It may look like a bike but it's just two bags of bike parts.
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Old 11-13-10, 07:36 PM   #22
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It was my understanding the trains in the UK are getting too crowded even for folding bikes! Since they are not going to buy new rail cars, the days of bring in a full size folder like the Dahon Espresso (during rush hour) could be over.

I hardly think anyone is going to take a measuring tape to determine if the 20' inch Dahon exceeds the limit. In fact, most people can't even determine the difference between a Dahon and a Brompton!
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Old 11-14-10, 08:54 AM   #23
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It was my understanding the trains in the UK are getting too crowded even for folding bikes!
Living in wide open spaces I have to use my imagination to empathize with this. Still, a person standing with a CarryMe between their feet wouldn't take up any more space than just a person holding a briefcase in front of themselves.

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I hardly think anyone is going to take a measuring tape to determine if the 20' inch Dahon exceeds the limit.
Nope. But I could see being denied until the folding cyclist pulled out their cloth tape measure and showed the bike met regulation.

At the airport several of the airlines have a rigid box with a sign: "If it fits in here, you can carry it on. If it doesn't, you have to check it."

Last edited by tcs; 11-14-10 at 09:06 AM.
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Old 11-14-10, 11:21 AM   #24
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If you need help imagining UK commuter train crowding, try this.
Note that this is a surface rail, the underground is always packed solid.
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Old 11-14-10, 11:47 AM   #25
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It's only when you travel in Europe (Switzerland in particular) that you realise how useless and unfriendly the UK rail system is. Swiss trains are much larger than over here and there are dedicated areas to carry many cycles. Luggage is not a problem and the trains run to time and all interconnect. In the UK the trains are narrow, cramped and there is no room for the average suitcase. As for running to time and interconnecting - don't get me started! We put up with very substandard services in the UK. Compare a Swiss hotel with the equivalent British one and the home grown establishments are over priced and well below the Helvitia mark. We get what we deserve. I try to avoid travelling by train in this country because it is not a nice experience. I get the feeling that the operators would prefer it if they did not have to consider passengers!

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