I need a folder for commuting, allowing me to bridge a 2.5-mile gap between train lines. I'm not 100% I'll be doing this for years, so at least for now, I'm not looking to spend a ton of money.
I was a pro bike mechanic back in college, so I don't mind a fixer-upper with good bones, but here in SoCal Craigslists, Dahons are about the nicest used folders out there and they go for around $250, give-or-take.
On the other hand, Downtube Novas go for close to the same amount for new, and I know from reading old posts here that they're pretty highly regarded for the price, and technologically, they seem very very similar to the 5 year old Dahons I see on Craigslist.
However, I'm 6'2" and 185 lbs, and Downtube says that the Nova isn't recommended for riders over 6 feet tall, and I'd love to know why that is.
I can see that the Nova's seatpost is 550mm long, allowing for a "Maximum saddle to pedal distance of 38 inches" (according to the Chinese manufacturer's specs at: http://www.truebicycles.com/contents/es/p180.html), which is one more inch than, say, a Dahon Speed 7, which says it's suitable for riders up to 6'4". Huh?
I've superimposed photos of each on each other, can can see the Nova's handlebars don't pitch forward as much as the Dahon's, but the Nova's seat is angled farther back, so the overall seat-to-handlebar difference doesn't seem that much different between the two.
So, tall riders of the Nova: please check in and tell me what the straight dope is for riding a Nova.
I just need to go 2.5 miles each way, twice a day, in about 20 minutes each way, or not really any faster than 10 miles an hour, over flat terrain with just one turn. I'll need to lug it up quite a few flights of stairs, so the Nova's light weight and quick fold appeals to me, as does its price. I used to ride centuries on road bikes, FYI.
Thanks for the advice,