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  1. #1
    Senior Member Amuro Lee's Avatar
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    A China-made fake Brompton

    I just found the pictures on a bike forum so I don't have any further information about it.





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  2. #2
    BBC Vintage Bikes bbcbikes2's Avatar
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    Common in Asia

    Folding bikes are very common in Asia. With how crowded China is, it doesnt surprise me to find these everywhere. They import quite a lot of folding bikes from japan as well. I attached a folding bike i recently saw in Thailand (DEC 2010). Funny its labeled as an Indy 500 lol

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  3. #3
    Senior Member samosaurus's Avatar
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    Imitation is a form of flattery..

    Sam
    Have knives will travel

  4. #4
    New usename ThorUSA brakemeister's Avatar
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    and you get what you pay for

    thor

  5. #5
    tcs
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    Not sure why you're calling it a "fake Brompton". From the pictures you provided, it seems to be plainly and clearly identified as a Sanye. I see no evidence anyone is trying to foist this example off as a product of Brompton Bicycle Limited.

    This is more than a semantic argument. Mr. Ritchie's patent expired many, many years ago. The Brompton bicycle does not require the use of any innovative or proprietary materials or manufacturing processes in its creation. In short, for most of the world it's now an open design.
    "When man first set woman on two wheels with a pair of pedals, did he know, I wonder, that he had rent the veil of the harem in twain? A woman on a bicycle has all the world before her where to choose; she can go where she will, no man hindering." The Typewriter Girl, 1899.

    "Every so often a bird gets up and flies some place it's drawn to. I don't suppose it could tell you why, but it does it anyway." Ian Hibell, 1934-2008

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    Dear Thor, do you feel that "you get what you pay for" even when comparing Chinese domestic models from Dahon to Dahon products sold in the west for at least 2 times the price? It seems that it's partly a question of super-competition, to be competitive in that environment with such a large base of folding bikes, prices can not be inflated as in the west.

  7. #7
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    JimBeans, are you saying you are comparing prices from one country to another? I think when someone says, 'you get what you pay for', you could only compare the products being sold in the same country.

  8. #8
    Senior Member DVC45's Avatar
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    If it is <$300.........I want one!

    "Cycling is for pleasure not penance"

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by tcs View Post
    Not sure why you're calling it a "fake Brompton". From the pictures you provided, it seems to be plainly and clearly identified as a Sanye. I see no evidence anyone is trying to foist this example off as a product of Brompton Bicycle Limited.

    This is more than a semantic argument. Mr. Ritchie's patent expired many, many years ago. The Brompton bicycle does not require the use of any innovative or proprietary materials or manufacturing processes in its creation. In short, for most of the world it's now an open design.
    If this is so, I wonder why we don't see many 'Brompton' type folders. I'm new here, but believe me, I've googled like there's no tomorrow and I had not seen any off brand folders with the Brompton type mech.


    I'm sure some of the senior members here can shed some light on that.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by crackerdog View Post
    JimBeans, are you saying you are comparing prices from one country to another? I think when someone says, 'you get what you pay for', you could only compare the products being sold in the same country.
    no, the implication was that if you don't spend much money (many of these folders are in the same price range, ~100 USD or less), you won't get much. You can find the same products sold in weestern markets in China too, and the prices aren't _that_ different, especially if you kill the taxes. But you can find very nice quality dahon single speeds for under $100 that use standard parts/dahon replacement parts, and they have good guarantees.

    So low_price != junk.

  11. #11
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OrangeJoe View Post
    If this is so, I wonder why we don't see many 'Brompton' type folders. I'm new here, but believe me, I've googled like there's no tomorrow and I had not seen any off brand folders with the Brompton type mech.


    I'm sure some of the senior members here can shed some light on that.
    Because despite the claims of Brompton fanatics, the Brompton design is not necessarily "the best". It entails many compromises in both rideability, serviceability, and weight to achieve a fold which isn't even the smallest.

    I think most manufacturers know that the customers who find the Brompton appealing will generally buy Bromptons (often for reasons of brand loyalty and business/manufacturing practices/locale as much as design). So they make what they think will appeal to the remaining potential customers who demand other things such as better ride qualities, lighter weight, more compatibility with standard parts, more current manufacturing techniques, more economically sensible spare part policies, and even smaller folds.

    I, for one, can tell you that I wouldn't buy a bike with a Brompton-type mechanism no matter who made it or what the cost because I don't like the feel of the rear suspension or its implications on the drivetrain. I think there are better designs out there which are manufactured with superior technologies and I don't put much value (as many Brompton customers do) on the fact that the Brompton is made in London and equipped with obsolete spare parts which are sold at a premium through Western distribution channels.
    Last edited by chucky; 01-21-11 at 11:54 AM.

  12. #12
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    there is an Asian made aluminum main frame bike, in Brompton format ,
    seen flicker photos of one rebuilt with trick aero stuff as a single speed .

    Maybe the TI parts fit on those, too.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Mr. Fly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chucky View Post
    Because despite the claims of Brompton fanatics, the Brompton design is not necessarily "the best". It entails many compromises in both rideability, serviceability, and weight to achieve a fold which isn't even the smallest.

    I think most manufacturers know that the customers who find the Brompton appealing will generally buy Bromptons (often for reasons of brand loyalty and business/manufacturing practices/locale as much as design). So they make what they think will appeal to the remaining potential customers who demand other things such as better ride qualities, lighter weight, more compatibility with standard parts, more current manufacturing techniques, more economically sensible spare part policies, and even smaller folds.

    I, for one, can tell you that I wouldn't buy a bike with a Brompton-type mechanism no matter who made it or what the cost because I don't like the feel of the rear suspension or its implications on the drivetrain. I think there are better designs out there which are manufactured with superior technologies and I don't put much value (as many Brompton customers do) on the fact that the Brompton is made in London and equipped with obsolete spare parts which are sold at a premium through Western distribution channels.
    Have you, perchance, used a Brompton for a reasonable amount of time, and compared it to another folder like a Dahon Curve or Bike Friday Tikit which you, of course, also used for a reasonable amount of time? I am also interested in knowing what the implication(s) from the suspension on the drivetrain is.

  14. #14
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Fly View Post
    Have you, perchance, used a Brompton for a reasonable amount of time, and compared it to another folder like a Dahon Curve or Bike Friday Tikit which you, of course, also used for a reasonable amount of time? I am also interested in knowing what the implication(s) from the suspension on the drivetrain is.
    Given the fact that the bike doesn't appeal to me, don't you think I'd have to be a tremendous idiot to not only purchase, but also continue using it for an extended period of time? No, just as any intelligent individual would, I purchase and use bikes I like, which perform as I like, and have the features I like.

    I have, however, had the chance to ride a few miles on all three of the bikes you mentioned. As I said I felt the Brompton was too flexible in the rear and, the tikit, I felt was too flexible in the front. I very much liked the Curve, but not as much as some of the other available bikes with either larger or smaller wheels (I don't, in general, think the 16" wheel sizes strike a good compromise). Dahons are, however, somewhat lacking in quality control compared to some of the competition, but with the money saved you could easily afford to have any problems repaired or replaced.

    As to the drivetrain, just as any bike with a nonunified rear triangle, the Brompton drivetrain requires an idler. This eliminates the possibility of going fixed gear and IMO the inconsistent chain tension degrades the performance and usability for single speed or IGH use. An idler is a fine compromise if you're using a derailleur, but of course the Brompton isn't really compatible with a derailleur, so you're stuck with the worst of both worlds (derailleur vs IGH) which really irritates someone like me who uses IGHs because he's very particular about his chainline.

    This is all, of course, in addition to the mushy feel of the suspension, the limited choice of handlebars/riding position, the high weight compared to other folders at the same price point...while it may be well suited to many people's uses, the Brompton is clearly NOT the "ideal" folder which every manufacturer should emulate.

    Not to discount the Brompton's virtues (of which there are many), but if "imitation is the sincerest of flattery" then I think the relative lack of it on the expired Brompton patent is a testament to the bike's shortcomings. Enjoy your Brompton if you have one, but it's just not the folder for me.
    Last edited by chucky; 01-21-11 at 02:30 PM.

  15. #15
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Brompton isn't really compatible with a derailleur
    6 speed Bromptons , now have a 2 speed derailleur/aKA Chain pusher.

    They just do it differently.
    2 pulleys with guide flanges molded in, move sideways. the shifter moves the pulley.

    3 by 2 hubs have 2 sprockets on 2 different sourced hubs.
    TW Sturmey now, Shimano bmx spline.
    Previous Sachs /Sram uses 2 3/32 sturmey AW3 spline cogs

    the 13 & 15 t cogs work to half step the 3 hub ratios, for the 6 gears.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 01-23-11 at 12:35 PM.

  16. #16
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    6 speed Bromptons , now have a 2 speed derailleur/aKA Chain pusher.

    They just do it differently.
    2 pulleys with guide flanges molded in, move sideways. the shifter moves the pulley.

    3 by 2 hubs have 2 sprockets on 2 different sourced hubs.
    TW Sturmey now, Shimano bmx spline.
    Previous Sachs /Sram uses 2 3/32 sturmey AW3 spline cogs

    the 13 & 15 t cogs work to half step the 3 hub ratios, for the 6 gears.
    I know...but it's not a standard derailleur and that's just the point I was trying to make: That no matter what kind of drivetrain you prefer the Brompton only offers a crippled version which exhibits many of the worst qualities of both types.
    Last edited by chucky; 01-24-11 at 07:31 PM.

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    Chucky you have some very good points. I was considering a Brompton and the consideration is since so many buyers are willing to fork out decent amount of money to own one it has to be good. Does this argument hold water.

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    http://cgi.ebay.com/FLAMINGO-ALUMINU...ht_1099wt_1141

    just saw this 'fake' bromtpon on ebay for $800. although it has 7 gears at that price rather get a real brompton...

    looks like it integrated the hinge of the dahon prototype.

  19. #19
    Senior Member badrad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by toango View Post
    http://cgi.ebay.com/FLAMINGO-ALUMINU...ht_1099wt_1141

    just saw this 'fake' bromtpon on ebay for $800. although it has 7 gears at that price rather get a real brompton...

    looks like it integrated the hinge of the dahon prototype.
    Holy smokes! $517.07 to ship worldwide???? At that price - the real brommie looks like a much better deal!

  20. #20
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    I came to this thread because in looking for a decent folder I keep coming across chinese knock-offs.

    Now, everyone will say they are rubbish. I'm sure most are.

    However, for a country of billions they are the standard issue. I'm looking to take a bike traveling. I don't want to spend thousands of dollars on a bicycle. If I do that I have to worry about it getting stolen, damaged... and last but very much not least - selling. A cheap bike is much much easier (_faster_) to sell than a decent one.

    So although I want a good bike for my home country I am looking at cheap knock-offs for city cycling abroad.

    The advantage here is that I can sell the bike when I finish my trip. If I get a problem? -maybe even give it away and buy a new one, sending it to the hostel I'm due to arrive at! You'd never do this with a proper bike.

    So, after arguing the case,
    what is the best of cheap Chinese style bikes? (or least worst)

    p.s.(edit)
    ...I'm actually looking for a UK distributor of the CarryMe as well on the basis that it's so small I shoudn't need to leave it out of my sight too much... but I still think that's not ideal - if you go in a shop are you going to carry it with you 24/7? Or would you rather lock up a 90 bike outside and if it gets ruined just buy another?
    Last edited by jago25_98; 01-28-11 at 05:21 AM.

  21. #21
    New usename ThorUSA brakemeister's Avatar
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    you get what you pay for was meant....
    that for the chinese market manufacturer most times have completely different models which look similar for the untrained eye but are significantly diferent.. Dahon makes bikes in China for the CHinese market and they sell very good over there.... but they are significantly different than the models they built for the rest of the world... gas pipe verus 4130 Crmo steel, differnt hinges , steel rims and such...
    sure these models will get you from point a to b but thats about it.... besides obviously there is no warranty... no parts availibility and such ...
    same with this lookalike Brommy.... if the rear feels like a wet noodle ... brakes not working .... chain tensioner falls off ... nobody want to hear about it ... nobody is there to help ....

    thor

  22. #22
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seawater View Post
    Chucky you have some very good points. I was considering a Brompton and the consideration is since so many buyers are willing to fork out decent amount of money to own one it has to be good. Does this argument hold water.
    Do you like the top ten hits on the radio? If so then that argument probably holds water for you, but if not you have to figure out what's going to work for you. Could be the Brompton or could be something else.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by chucky View Post
    Not to discount the Brompton's virtues (of which there are many), but if "imitation is the sincerest of flattery" then I think the relative lack of it on the expired Brompton patent is a testament to the bike's shortcomings. Enjoy your Brompton if you have one, but it's just not the folder for me.
    The Brompton is protected in UK and the Neobikes were crushed to prevent them from being sold. I have no problems with this form of protection since the UK saw the loss of Sturmey Archer and Ralleigh. If we did the same, maybe Schwinn and Cannondale would still be made here.

    I happen to think Bike Friday, Birdy and Dahon have too much pride to copy off each other or the Brompton bike. Dahon has the resources to copy any folding bike but choose to go the high road. Yet, the Brompton clones continue to appear on Ebay but no dealer will stock them because they get no support from the manufacturer.

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Fly View Post
    Have you, perchance, used a Brompton for a reasonable amount of time, and compared it to another folder like a Dahon Curve or Bike Friday Tikit which you, of course, also used for a reasonable amount of time? I am also interested in knowing what the implication(s) from the suspension on the drivetrain is.
    I have used a Dahon Piccolo for over 5 thousand miles and a Brompton for several hundred miles. Therefore, I speak from experience having tested Dahon and Brompton bikes.

    I find the suspension in the Brompton bike fine and necessary. A 16' inch folder on bad roads becomes quite uncomfortable after a short while. I needed a suspension seat post or a Brooks Champion Flyer with springs on my folding bikes. I have to say you get used to the suspension but those who never owned a Brompton will tell you different.

    I happen to believe there is alot of resentment on this forum against the Brompton because it's very expensive and used Brommies usually sell for almost retail value! I used to be one of those "Haters" but decided after years of riding Dahons to buy one. I can finally say that I've seen the light on why this bike is still in production 20 years later.

    You have to experience it over a period of months to fully appreciate the Brompton. My Piccolo and Presto feel cheaper compared to the Brompton. Only the Birdy costing close to 2K was better than the Brompton. In fact, if it weren't for the lack of support in the U.S., the Birdy is better value. I like Tikit alot and think this bike rides better but has a large fold. The Strida feels just as good as the Brompton but comes in one only gear. Dahon's Curve SL is very nice but they dropped the 8 speed hub and have gone to a derailluer.

    All of these bike with the exception of the Strida cost close to or are over 1K. Yet, all this anger seems to be focused on the Brompton because it's the most desired of the lot. I will say this. Once you own a Brompton, all those comments on poor components become irrelevant.

    Over the years we have seen good offerings from Dahon such as the Presto Lite and Curve SL but these models come and go. The Brompton lives on!

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    +1 on steves comments.

    i love my brompton and is my favorite bicycle after getting and riding a dahon picollo and bike friday pocket llama. the wheels on the piccolo's wheels are too small for a fast ride. the bike friday rides better with 20" wheels but doesn't fold small enough. (better for touring which i hardly do). for my needs having the front bag and the bromptons neat small fold allows for the best multi modal transportation experience without spandex.

    i hope to see the company flourish with other models particularly the electric version coming soon in a year or 2.

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