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Old 12-18-12, 04:30 PM   #3226
Epicyclist
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Originally Posted by mtalinm View Post
I'm thinking about trying mountain biking and am hoping I can give it a try without buying a mountain bike ... at least not yet. Can I use my Swift, at least for some test runs?
It depends on the trail. I've ridden my Swift on some trails around Boston. It did okay on most, but not well at all on a couple. Big Apples are, not surprisingly, much better than 1.5" tires. It's outright fun on undulating, packed dirt (Reformatory Branch rail trail). It does pretty well (certainly better than a road bike) on sane gravel roads that would be passable in a car. It even does okay on eroded trails with large, smooth rocks (Lowell-Dracut-Tyngsboro State Forest).

Where it fails are tree roots, fist-sized rocks, and tight going. It doesn't take much of a tree root to stop it cold (while your body continues forward), and I had to turn back from a rocky fire road in Middlesex Fells because I couldn't steer with all the bouncing. I also found it hard to control on somewhat smooth but tight and twisty paths through trees (Belmont's Rock Meadow/Beaver Brook North), but that might be okay with flat bars or dirt drops rather than road drops (the problem was brake leverage and getting my hands bounced off the hoods).

It's an eccentric thing to do, no question about that. :-)
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Old 01-01-13, 05:49 AM   #3227
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Sorted the loose seatpost problem with some copper tooling foil 0.1mm. It’s very malleable and easy to cut but strong enough to keep its shape.

I like the idea of a 0.1mm slither of copper between the two parts of the seat tube where they come together, too.

It’s a lovely snug fit even with the clamps undone.

Back to work tomorrow following my visit to relatives but hope to get it on the road for next week.

Wishing everyone a prosperous new year.
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Old 01-01-13, 11:16 AM   #3228
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I finally got round to doing some work on my Xootr as well.

Here she is with a few changes from when I posted her stock (with BAs and an adjustable raised stem fitted) back in September.




The main obvious changes are new mudguards (old new stock 60mm wide aluminum ones), the Klickfix bracket on the seat post and rear light fitting. I have been riding the bike all through late summer in the evenings and its just so much fun to ride. Now though I have decided to use it more for my daily 10 mile round commute. As such a decent set of mudguards in our wonderful UK winter weather is essential. Finding and fitting the right mudguards was a challenge. First I tried some short clip on ones but gave up as without full fitting ones the mud just sprays up. I was using shorter ones because I did not want to effect the fold and the seat post locking the frame together when folded. However having read through all 100+ posts here I realised I could use full guards and it would still work.


Here she is with the Klickfix ruck sack fitted. The bag looks wonky but that is because I had just come back from a ride, was hot and had stuffed my jumper in it and the metal frame inside had got dislodged.





Jerry

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Old 01-01-13, 11:19 AM   #3229
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Ok you have probably noticed some more stuff going in


This is a VERY small electric assist motor. Its not much larger than a dynamo and weighs just 1.4Kg. For radial spoking (this is a very low powered wheel and its small so inherently strong) I used washers to pack out the counter sunk spoke holes for alternate heads out/heads in as all spoke heads out, looks so much better.







Controller






The small controller fits behind the seat post frame tube and takes input from a pedelec sensor fitted to the crank axle. The motor kicks in and speeds up as you pedal/increase cadence.






Jerry

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Old 01-01-13, 11:27 AM   #3230
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I then have a choice of three safe 36v DIY batteries which go into the ruck sack. A 1.1Ah, (0.5kg), 2.3Ah (1kg) or 6Ah (2kg) giving me around 5, 10 and 30 miles respectively in and around Cambridge.



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Old 01-01-13, 11:30 AM   #3231
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This bike is so nice to ride in its stock form that I only switch in the assistance when needed i.e. when its windy/raining, go up inclines or if I am feeling just plain lazy.

A simple on/off switch on the bars engages the pedelec and a cutout brake kills power when braking.





The bike is lovely to ride even before adding assistance and with this light weight 200W assist its the icing on the cake. The bike carry weight without the ruck sack is still less than 14kg.

I tend to fold it and carry it like this though I am not sure if its advisable or not ?

I find this the most comfortable way to carry it. Something else I always do is to turn the front wheel in 180 degrees before locking the frame up as I find that makes for a smaller fold ?






Note the champagne cork to both give seat most more length (taken up by the klickfix mount) and help it lock tight against the mud guard when folding

Also note the extra flap (still need to rivet it on) to stop splash up hitting the back pack.


Jerry

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Old 01-01-13, 12:31 PM   #3232
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As a comparison here is my Brompton Ti also fitted with the same assistance. The Brompton in this form is 2kg lighter (less than 12Kg carry weight) and I use it when I know I am going in and out of shops or to restaurants/coffee shops etc.




Finally here are both bikes shown side by side.





As many know with folders its all about compromise. The Brompton is just so portable, perfect for mixed mode transport but I would not want to ride it for very long trips. With the Swift you lose portability, but gain so much in terms of long ride comfort, rigidity and speed!


Regards

Jerry

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Old 01-01-13, 03:45 PM   #3233
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Man, I'd trade my bike & an iPad for that thing!!! Great work,...& Happy New Year!!!
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Old 01-01-13, 04:25 PM   #3234
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Lol thanks and a happy new year to you too.

I been converting small wheeled bikes to "e" assist for the last three years. Over that time motors and batteries have been getting smaller and smaller. Some may say its cheating, but for me over the last three years its made the difference of commuting every day by bike (a total of 4500 miles covered now) from previously using my car every day.

Regards

Jerry

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Old 01-02-13, 04:35 AM   #3235
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nish2575 View Post
more details on the basket frame.




i consider getting it myself, but only if it was rixen kaul compatible. i haven't heard back if it is using the rixen and kaul clip in

to me the idea of having something with a large mounting frame attached (such as the baske) to a folding bike defeats the purpose. the carradice bags, brompton bags, and rixen kaul backpacks where the frame detaches and is small. i couldnt' imagine lugging around a basket with a folding bike in another hand.


i also thought this was cool, posted on some other bf thread:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/4505157...57626242702790

That flickr link was actually my work

There is a wealth of info in this Xootr thread. This caught my eye and I thought looked VERY interesting






I much prefer any weight carried on small wheeled bikes to be loaded low down on the front and on the main frame i.e. not attached to and weighing down on the steering. Bromtpon and Dahon/Tern have this sown up and both have metal lugs welded on the header tube onto which mounting blocks attach. Alas the Xootr does not. Anyway this may provide a solution. The plate appears to be stabilised from twisting left/right by that screw/stud that must be tapped into the frame header tube. I don't want to start drilling into the frame but I have an idea about how it might be done using two U bolts and a mounting plate. I will report back later.

Jerry

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Old 01-02-13, 02:36 PM   #3236
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Ok the obvious most simple choice for mounting stuff up front is using the Klickfix range. This is one of the standard fixing units that attaches to your stem as posted in this thread already. Unfortunately it can't be mounted on the main frame header tube







You can then use any of their shopping type bags like this.





Does the job but will effect steering when fully ladden. I have ordered one to try.
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Old 01-02-13, 02:48 PM   #3237
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I have been out in the workshop to look at how I might fit something to the front frame tube to take the luggage weight off the steering. This is my prototype to see how it might work. As you can see it uses the U bolt idea I got from the around post 100 way back earlier in this thread and copied above.

These are standard U bolts used on car exhaust clamps. Covered in heat shrink to protect the frame/paintwork






These are a little bit too narrow diam U and larger thread (M8) ones but fine for the prototype. I have sourced and ordered some slightly larger diam ones to fit the 41.5mm OD of the frame head tube and with a thinner M6 thread. In these positions they do not foul/rub on either the top head set or bottom cup race so steering is not interfered with/effected. The wider U diam and thinner m6 ones will fit even better. A flat plate is then needed to attach to the U bolts. Again just a prototype in thin aluminum. The final one will need to be made of thicker aluminum plate. Note the plate will also need to be spaced away from the frame head tube, probably two spacers one top one bottom. Shown is just a temporary spacer. All four bolts can then be tightened down equally, but not with this thinner plate which just flexes. Obviously care will be required not to over tighten things and deform the frame head tube, though that would probably be unlikely given that in this position the U bolts are also over the the area which will be strengthened where the cups will be inside the head tube anyway.







A choice of carrier block, which in my case will be a Brompton one as I have a lot of their luggage, will need to be modified and attached to the plate.






Ok the plate is large and ugly but its a prototype and on the final plate, material can be removed where not required by cutting back smaller/rounding edges off as shown below again in prototype form.





More later when I get the new U bolts and some thicker aluminum plate

Jerry

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Old 01-02-13, 03:08 PM   #3238
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Here is something similar I did on an old Raleigh Moulton MK3 which has worked well for a couple of years even carrying heavy loads of milk, wine and beer from local shop runs.




A bit over kill with three jubilee clips but you get the idea.

Jerry
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Old 01-04-13, 06:05 PM   #3239
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I just sold my Brompton because I like the Swift ride a lot better.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jerrysimon View Post
As a comparison here is my Brompton Ti also fitted with the same assistance. The Brompton in this form is 2kg lighter (less than 12Kg carry weight) and I use it when I know I am going in and out of shops or to restaurants/coffee shops etc.




Finally here are both bikes shown side by side.





As many know with folders its all about compromise. The Brompton is just so portable, perfect for mixed mode transport but I would not want to ride it for very long trips. With the Xootr you lose portability, but gain so much in terms of long ride comfort, rigidity and speed!


Regards

Jerry
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Old 01-05-13, 04:16 AM   #3240
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If I could only have one bike it would still be the Ti EBrompton shown. Fortunately I can have more than one, so I will keep both

I agree the Swift rides much better, but for city riding/shopping & fun the Brompton has it.

Regards

Jerry
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Old 01-05-13, 07:02 AM   #3241
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I could have kept both.... but after a year of riding the brompton, I kept kicking my heels on the wheels on the rear rack. I tried pedal extenders... ect... but I just could not get used to it. SO I ride the Swift for most things over 4 miles, and I have a BF Tikit coming in a few weeks. It's not as compact as the Brompton... but it will do nicley.
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If I could only have one bike it would still be the Ti EBrompton shown. Fortunately I can have more than one, so I will keep both

I agree the Swift rides much better, but for city riding/shopping & fun the Brompton has it.

Regards

Jerry
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Old 01-05-13, 11:35 AM   #3242
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A slight update the Rixen&Kaul, KLICKfix shopper plus bag turned up. Like the Brompton one, it's nice and large (24L) to carry all your local shopping/groceries. Seems well made and is easily clipped on and off when needed.



As I said though this mounts onto a stem fitting so the weight is fully taken on and effects the steering. Not unusual as many bike have baskets on their steering/handle bars.

The other U bolts turned up, so I will continue to work on the frame mounted arrangement.

Jerry

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Old 01-05-13, 11:42 AM   #3243
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Great work Jerry!
The swift looks like a nice bike, I wish the fold was more compact. My current bike (MuP8) lives in my car boot and even then takes up too much room!
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Old 01-09-13, 03:04 AM   #3244
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Couple more pics/tweaks.

The rear fender extender is now neatly pop riveted on. This does a great job of keeping the rear spray down from hitting the back of my ruck sack





I also found mud was spattering up from the front guard to hit the BB and seat post frame tube. I have a couple of Bromptons already, so thought I would try a Brompton mud flap which fits and works perfectly to prevent that.


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Old 01-09-13, 03:18 AM   #3245
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I have now tried it once on my ten mile round commute to work and this bike is simply fantastic. Living in Cambridge and it being so flat I find I am quickly reaching 19-20 mph on the flats so have started to look at gearing. I thought a slightly higher top gear might be nice. The big apples already raise the stock top gear from 92" to 95" having an effective circumference of 512mm, which takes them nearer to a slick 24" wheel rather than 20" one!

Looking at my calculator we therefore have the following for an 11T sprocket

Main 52T = 95", 54" = 98" and 56T = 102"

Again owning Bromptons I thought why not try a Brompton 54T chain ring





This is a simple swap though I am going to need a longer chain to get into bottom gear. Note the Brompton pedal

I may even try the Brompton folding pedal on the other side to help neaten up the fold. With this larger main ring things get more comfortable at higher speeds. The Brompton ring is nice in that it has a chain guard that sits better against the ring than the stock one and prevents the chain coming off. It is also lighter than the stock chain set, though some complain more flexy. I may try a 56T on the stock spider but would also need to get a larger chain guard, which I see is available on ebay

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2908411615...84.m1438.l2649


Already a converted Brompton fan, I have to say that I am loving the Swift Xootr which is just such a great/comfortable bike to ride. IMHO the big apples transform it and make it one of if not THE most comfortable small wheeled bikes for the money to ride. I own a Mouton TSR which is silky smooth to ride, but they are at least twice the price and you would never leave one locked up anywhere


Regards

Jerry



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Old 01-09-13, 09:02 PM   #3246
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Gawd I want your bike!!! LOL!!!
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Old 01-10-13, 04:24 AM   #3247
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Thanks lol

If you were in the UK and had a Swift I would have considered adding assistance for you if you had wanted it.

Regards

Jerry
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Old 01-10-13, 07:56 PM   #3248
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Thanks lol

If you were in the UK and had a Swift I would have considered adding assistance for you if you had wanted it.

Regards

Jerry
Thank you sir!!!
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Old 01-11-13, 07:28 AM   #3249
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Oh, I was thinking I could post some news.

I had an accident with my Swift in May. Rear wheel and Nuvinci hub destroyed, and rear triangle measured at a 2,5-3mm offset to left.
Haven't rebuilt it yet as I received the insurance in November and am happy riding my full-sized "beater", will do soon.
Yet I put an old set of wheels, no derailleur (using the cassette as singlespeed), and the 2,5-3mm offset is not terrible.
Handling still seems excellent and replacing the rear tire by a proper tire will make most of the difference. Plus many manufacturer's tolerances are as high a 3mm for the rear triangle, most quality bikes are within 2mm, and dishing/using spacers to compensate is not a big deal imho. Just needs more delicate wheel placement if you use a big tire like a Big Apple as there's not much clearance left - you'll have to add one link to the chain and put it 1 cm behind in the dropouts. End of story.

Now about the bike before it broke:

The Nuvinci N360 hub offers impressive and continuous accelerations (putting to shame any derailleur or IGH by a WIDE margin) which, paired with the responsiveness of the Swift and the low rotational mass of the small wheels, made for an excellent city bike. The low mass and high rigidity of the bike makes for ultra fast start-up (first meters), a bit tamed by the weight of the Nuvinci. But then after the first meters, the Nuvinci offers you the best acceleration you could get. So, you get excellent (yet could be better for this frame) startup and then excellent ramp up to speed.

These are IMHO stellar characteristics for a city bike used ie. in Paris where riding means going from a red light to another one every 100m.

Yet I'm hesitating between buying a new clickbox and spacer for my Nuvinci hub and having it rebuilt in a new wheel (if the wheel builder says the flange are still ok, they were scraper and the holes suffered a bit but there is quite a lot of material in these flanges so...). My build is super-light in its make: ultra light seatpost, saddle and chainring. So a light derailleur could make an ultra-light bike (<10 kg probably).

Stellar city bike or ultra-light bike? Hmm... Not an easy choice.

I could also ride a Moulton and compare it to the Swift.
The Moulton has a lot of suspension and is quite cushy. Way more comfortable than the Swift. But I hate bouncing up and down on suspension and the Moulton does bounce quite a bit.

Otho, riding cobblestones on the Swift with Big Apples (run at rather high pressure for efficiency), the bike obviously doesn't bob - but you'd better stand up and have a feather touch on your handlebars. But the bike is super precise and won't deviate from a perfect trajectory, it is very safe. Well, all you have to do is enjoy some mountain biking in the city then! xD

Regarding the way they handle, especially the direction, they both have that very secure and precise feeling. Not exactly the same way, but rather close.

Moulton vs Swift: I prefer the Swift.
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Old 01-12-13, 06:16 AM   #3250
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Went out for my first proper ride today and I’m a bit disappointed, hopefully only temporarily. Not that I was expecting much as I intended to use the initial set-up as a commute bike through the harsh English winter, thereby making use of some of the components that were on it when I purchased it.

Here’s a not great photo taken on my old mobile phone to give you an idea of the current set-up.

On the plus side, due to pure luck, this is the best and most comfortable riding position I’ve ever had. Also, at speed and on a clear road it’s fine.

The problem is at lower speeds mainly due to the fact that it has a coaster brake and the bike feels too sluggish with the heavy stock wheels and hub gear. Or maybe it’s just the Big Apple tyres that make it feel spongy. They look almost new so I thought I should make use of them. But I like a firm ride.

So now it’s either get a freewheel gear hub, something I know nothing about as I’ve never had a gear hub before, or go for a derailleur system and new lighter wheels. Anyone in UK got a spare rear derailleur hanger?

One other plus was the I-beam seatpost and saddle, which I really liked. Anyone purchasing this set-up for the first time make sure you pre-stress and nip up the bolts quite a few times before riding on the road.


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