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Folding Bikes Discuss the unique features and issues of folding bikes. Also a great place to learn what folding bike will work best for your needs.

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Old 08-12-12, 03:06 PM   #1
kateharp
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Need a folding bike I can sit up straight on

Does anyone recommend a folding bike where you can sit up straight (and don't have to bend forward)?

I'm looking for one that is:

20" tires
minimum 6 gears.

I've looked around for a folding bike where you can sit up straight on but there are very few. I have a dahon but the handbars won't go higher than 42" from the ground.

thanks!
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Old 08-12-12, 03:11 PM   #2
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Have you also tried putting the saddle further forward?
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Old 08-12-12, 03:37 PM   #3
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The handlebars on the new Origami Mantis go as high as 47.5" for a nice upright riding position. There are a few photos of it on www.facebook.com/origamaibicyclecompany
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Old 08-12-12, 03:44 PM   #4
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Citizen bikes look fairly upright
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Old 08-12-12, 03:59 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by kateharp View Post
Does anyone recommend a folding bike where you can sit up straight (and don't have to bend forward)? ...
Among the folding bikes that our shop currently carries (Dahon, Tern, Brompton, Raleigh), the Raleigh Folding i8 has the most upright riding position.

The Dahon Ciao D5, the Dahon Briza D7 and the Tern Castro Duo have fairly upright positions. And you may be able to get the extra handlebar height you need with an Aber Hallo stem. See: http://www.thorusa.com/accessories/handlebar.htm

Where are you located?

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Last edited by HGR3inOK; 08-13-12 at 07:00 AM. Reason: add options
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Old 08-12-12, 04:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kateharp View Post
Does anyone recommend a folding bike where you can sit up straight (and don't have to bend forward)?

I'm looking for one that is:

20" tires
minimum 6 gears.

I've looked around for a folding bike where you can sit up straight on but there are very few. I have a dahon but the handbars won't go higher than 42" from the ground.

thanks!
In addition to mulleady's suggestion have you tried different handlebars on your Dahon? MTB riser bars may offer the height and fore-aft adjustability you need.
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Old 08-12-12, 05:07 PM   #7
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Are you sure you need the bars higher? You want to ride "and don't have to bend forward". I find often peopel (newbees at least) mix up the need for higher bars and getting the bars closer to your body. Most peopel would be ok with the bars at the same level as the saddle or slightly higher if they can get the bars close enough to the body.

How tall are you? How often do you fold the bike?
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Old 08-12-12, 07:11 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by kateharp View Post
Does anyone recommend a folding bike where you can sit up straight (and don't have to bend forward)?

I'm looking for one that is:

20" tires
minimum 6 gears.

I've looked around for a folding bike where you can sit up straight on but there are very few. I have a dahon but the handbars won't go higher than 42" from the ground.

thanks!
I believe you can modify your own handbar by your own...
I'm not sure in your country is the handbar available?
In here I can modify it any shape anytime.
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Old 08-12-12, 07:14 PM   #9
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Actually that makes things worse as my legs can't get extension and it hurts them. Thanks for trying to help.
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Old 08-12-12, 07:23 PM   #10
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Actually that makes things worse as my legs can't get extension and it hurts them. Thanks for trying to help.
What distance do you need from the seat to the pedals? I know that up to 38" can be accommodated.
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Old 08-13-12, 12:14 AM   #11
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Downtube Nova has an upright position.

It also allows you to adjust the handlebar height.

http://www.downtube.com/popup_image....RANGE_2012.jpg
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Old 08-13-12, 12:18 AM   #12
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I'm in Berkeley CA. Thanks so much for the suggestions!!!!
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Old 08-13-12, 12:24 AM   #13
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Yes maybe I do just need the bars closer. I probably have to find new bars. I am 5"4" and don't fold it very often. I also have a problem that I can't quite extend my leg far enough (my knees would feel better if I could) -- so I put the seat back as far as possible to get leg extension because if I raise it I can't touch the ground and am also forced to bend over. I feel like I must have a weird body (short arms and legs) because none of the folding bikes feel that comfortable when I test ride. them. My 15 year old ratty $50 used Dahon feels the best so far -- but I've only test rode a few new ones.
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Old 08-13-12, 01:45 PM   #14
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To suggest a handlebar is not easy since we do not know what is available where you live.

Is there a bike coop close to where you live? Maybe they can help.

Also it could be possible to find a longer seatpost if you think you need oneto be able to stretch your legs more. actually, a new seat could be your solution since on some seats the rails are far from the top of the seat (like on a seat with springs) and on some seats the rails are tucked in under the seat and therefor needs a longer seatpost to get the desired height.

Maybe dial in the old bike and find a good ridingposition. Then if you decide to get a new bike you know what you are looking for. If you buy some good parts for your old bike just take care of the original parts so you can transfer your new good parts to your new bike and put the old parts back on the old bike if you sell it.
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Old 08-13-12, 02:20 PM   #15
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I also have a problem that I can't quite extend my leg far enough (my knees would feel better if I could) -- so I put the seat back as far as possible to get leg extension because if I raise it I can't touch the ground and am also forced to bend over. I feel like I must have a weird body (short arms and legs) because none of the folding bikes feel that comfortable when I test ride. them. My 15 year old ratty $50 used Dahon feels the best so far -- but I've only test rode a few new ones.

You shouldn't be able to touch the ground if you get the proper leg extension. Do what others are suggesting and raise the seat to the correct height, then move your seat forward so that a vertical line from your knee downward passes through the ball of your feet when the front most pedal is in the horizontal position. Last thing is to get a Haber Allo stem and move your handle bars back towards you if need be or if the handle bar can get closer by swiveling it then do so and adjust the brakes.
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Old 08-13-12, 03:04 PM   #16
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I just rode from Downtown Oakland to Telegraph yesterday on my 3 speed Brompton, and I didn't have any trouble at all. If you would consider going for 5 gears instead of 6, Check out the Dahon Ciao. It's made for upright cruising and looks quite stylish too.

[video=youtube;3nKzI3BDymI]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3nKzI3BDymI[/video]

There's also the Dahon Briza: http://www.nycewheels.com/dahon-fold...-briza-d7.html

I like the internal hub of the Ciao, but the Briza is 7 speeds and costs about $100 less.

Last edited by Training.Wheels; 08-13-12 at 03:08 PM.
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Old 08-13-12, 04:27 PM   #17
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Kate, if you drive, I'd be happy to have a look at your Dahon and your bike setup.. there might be some easy things for me to try or suggest.. once across the Richmond Bridge, my shop is about 1 1/2 miles away ..
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Old 08-13-12, 08:00 PM   #18
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Have to agree, having someone who knows folders and proper riding position look at your set-up and make suggestions or minor adjustments would be the quickest way to solve your riding position problem.

Lou
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Old 08-13-12, 08:56 PM   #19
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I'm in Berkeley CA. Thanks so much for the suggestions!!!!
Since you're in Berkeley, you could try visiting Warm Planet Bikes. They specialize in folding bikes and I've found them very knowledgeable and helpful. The shop is located at the San Francisco Caltrain station, so it's easily reached on public transit. Since they also handle the bike parking for Caltrain commuters, it's best if you can visit when it's not rush hour so they won't be as busy. (Unlike most bike shops, they're not open on Saturday and Sunday.)
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Old 08-14-12, 01:58 AM   #20
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Well Bike friday can build to size of rider and with the QR just like one on seat-posts.
allow you to raise the bars to ride, then lower to fold

Tikit is their folding model
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Old 08-14-12, 02:21 AM   #21
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Not a good idea - likely knee injuries over time. Try a stem extender or, if you can afford it, Bike Friday will custom build you a bike to put you in any position you want. (www.bikefriday.com - at least $1500)
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Have you also tried putting the saddle further forward?
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Old 08-14-12, 07:59 AM   #22
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its surprising how easy an expert like Bruce can make a bike feel different, plus he can also see if there are old habits how you ride your bike might be changed over time. All in all a very well worth investment into a trip to visit him. Also + on warm planet, very nice guys, knowledgeable and down to earth ...literally ...
take a day off and visit both of them, even if you buy a new bike later on it will be worth it.

http://www.thorusa.com/dahon/technical/aberhallo.htm can be mounted upwards, q/r wont work so well , but it gives you some height, as well as a straight touring bar with some rise in it ....
Or maybe even a Soma or Vienna bar ... which moves the hands back, while not changing any knee extension problems .... they will make a different bike out of anything ....

lots of possibilities
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Old 08-14-12, 10:18 AM   #23
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Here's a hack i did on an old Dahon P8. I stopped riding it almost a year back because of penile numbness , followed by neck ache then wrist problems. Must be Age. Moved to a recumbent which solved everything but is hard to transport esp on a Geo Metro. Was able to borrow a Townie with the cruiser or crank forward position. Enjoyed its upright ride so I decided to mimick it

CAUTION: This is a hack and not engineered. Copy at your own risk.

First I bent the seatpost using a pipe bender a friend got from Harbor freight. I had to do a double bend.I estimate the effective seat angle moved at least 4 inches back of the bottom bracket. To raise the bar, I used a cruiser bar which moved the controls back towards me. I used a piece of scrap alum pipe to slide up or down on the stock folding stem, clamped a short aheadset stem and mounted the cruiser bar.I had to reverse position the aheadset stem so the bar can even be closer.

The hack will change the folding size. You have to slide out the aheadset stem/bar/alum pipe unit so it will fold as compact as the original. At least now it fits inside our small car

The ride is not too much different from the stock. Front wheels feel slightly lighter but I plan putting a rack on the front ala cargo bike for more weight up front.

Maybe the correct way of doing this is to weld another bottom bracket in front of the existing one. I estimate you can move it between 4 to 6 inches before pedal overlap occurs. THis way, no seatpost bending is required, you move more weight to the front wheel and maybe a less agressive cruiser bar will be required.

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Old 08-14-12, 10:51 AM   #24
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Here's a hack i did on an old Dahon P8. I stopped riding it almost a year back because of penile numbness , followed by neck ache then wrist problems. Must be Age. Moved to a recumbent which solved everything but is hard to transport esp on a Geo Metro. Was able to borrow a Townie with the cruiser or crank forward position. Enjoyed its upright ride so I decided to mimick it

CAUTION: This is a hack and not engineered. Copy at your own risk.


First I bent the seatpost using a pipe bender a friend got from Harbor freight. I had to do a double bend.I estimate the effective seat angle moved at least 4 inches back of the bottom bracket. To raise the bar, I used a cruiser bar which moved the controls back towards me. I used a piece of scrap alum pipe to slide up or down on the stock folding stem, clamped a short aheadset stem and mounted the cruiser bar.I had to reverse position the aheadset stem so the bar can even be closer.

The hack will change the folding size. You have to slide out the aheadset stem/bar/alum pipe unit so it will fold as compact as the original. At least now it fits inside our small car

The ride is not too much different from the stock. Front wheels feel slightly lighter but I plan putting a rack on the front ala cargo bike for more weight up front.

Maybe the correct way of doing this is to weld another bottom bracket in front of the existing one. I estimate you can move it between 4 to 6 inches before pedal overlap occurs. THis way, no seatpost bending is required, you move more weight to the front wheel and maybe a less agressive cruiser bar will be required.
Great if it works for you but I am sorry to say I can not find one good reason to copy this hack. First of all mowing BOTH the grip area of the bars and the saddle this far back does not make sense at all. Mowing only the grip area of the bars do. also I do not know what sort of seatpost you are using there but for sure the frame (especially the top of the seat tube) is not strong enough to take the strain of the bent seatpost. Also placing the riders weight this far back is dangerous since the front wheel would hardly touch the ground. The rear wheel is carrying all the weight of the rider.

I suggest you go and see Bruce if possible, he really knows his bikes!
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Old 08-14-12, 10:57 AM   #25
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because you could bend that tubing with a pipe bender,
it will continue to bend while you ride the bike..
so pay attention to that.


I used a Brompton Saddle adapter pin, faced backwards
to increase the setback range of adjustment ..
it results in a horizontal tube to mount the saddle clip onto..

you flip it over and use it ahead of the regular seat post.
if the frame feels too long.

Last edited by fietsbob; 08-15-12 at 07:10 PM.
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