This bike is not mine. The ad is hilarious. I voted it for a best of craigslist
Folding Bike of Death - $50 (Clairemont)
Date: 2012-01-19, 9:34AM PST
Reply to: firstname.lastname@example.org [Errors when replying to ads?]
Are you a depressed cyclist? Want to kill yourself but you don't know how? Well you're in luck! I have a bicycle that is perfect for suicidal riders! I have this fine Dahon folding bike for sale. When I bought it, I knew that it was a killer and I laughed in the face of death and rode it anyway. The problem, which I am making explicitly clear to you so that you know what you're getting into is the following. This bike must have at one point in time (before I owned it) had a proper safety arrangement. It does not now. Now it has an unsafety arrangement. It must have once had gears but now it is a "fixie". Oh yes, hipster, you will be granted full fixie street cred and more because this is not your average stupid dangerous fixie. This is a completely suicidal idiotic fixie! You will be so cool! Maybe you could get tri spoke wheels for it and paint it lime green. But I digress. Some clever previous owner took off the gears and with it the derailleur and with that the chain tensioner. Ah. The chain tensioner! See, this fine vehicle has a rear swing arm suspension like a masculine virile motorcycle (seriously, you will be so cool on this thing). You can see from the photos that the swing arm pivot is not exactly centered axially with the crank spindle. What does this mean? Well, every time you go over a bump (or just hop up and down excitedly) the distance from the rear axle to the crank spindle changes a wee bit. How wee? Well not quite wee enough to always reliably keep the chain on. No chain, you say, big deal, chains are for sissies anyway, right? Well, turns out that the chain is kind of critical for making the coaster brake actually feel like engaging. That's right, by design, this bike is set up to lose its brake pretty much when you most need it. Cool! But hey, isn't that a front brake there in the photo? Yes it is. That is what I added to mitigate the danger and prolong my lifespan a bit. But be warned, it's a V-brake ($12 from Amazon) and an old lever I had lying around (not for a V-brake). Uh oh. Yup. So the front "brake" is more of a slowing tool than an actual brake per se. It's good enough to take off some speed while you scout out some relatively comfortable bushes to bail into.
That said I am selling this fine machine for only $50 and I anticipate that while a stupid person could enjoy it as is, a clever person could actually make this bike safe again. What's cool about this bike and the reason I got it was that after my roof rack got ripped off from near a major university with no parking, I was able to use this bike and just put it in my car in about 3 seconds. That was just folding it in half, but if you're really tight for space, this bike really folds down like a squirrel under a car tire. If that sounds like it'd solve your problem, this is a good frame to start with. Send me an email if you're interested. Thanks.
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