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  1. #1
    Senior Member shipwreck's Avatar
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    New to folders, have a few questions

    I do a lot of traveling around the country, and up to now have done it in my full sized van, so I could take 2 bikes inside, a mountain and a road bike.

    However, I really hate driving. Always have. So, I have decided to start flying to all my events(I make dollhouse Miniatures)

    The biggest issue is taking a bike now. I love bikes, and part of the enjoyment I get out of life is tooling around a new city on two wheels. I am an aggressive rider in traffic, but love bike paths as well.

    So, I have been looking at folding bikes, and I can't help but notice that most of them don't fold to within the 62 inch carry on limit. Those that do ar a bit out of my price range.
    I thought about something like the carryme, but really want something that I can do twenty miles or so on, plus it would be at the very, very streched limit of my budget.

    Does anyone dissasemble a folder to make it smaller, for example remove wheels, possibly the fork? I am not afraid of some assembley, and I do not plan on riding out of the airport on the bike but taking a hotel shuttle to the room where I could work on it. To me, working on a bike actualy sounds like a very relaxing thing to do after a plane ride.

    Does an airline still charge an outrageous "bicycle fee", even for a folder? If so, I will take a full sized bike. My thought was that a folder could be called a "Dolly" for my trade show display. And no, I can't take Southwest, they don't fly from the local airport.

    I am leaning to a 16" wheel bike, because of the packing issue. Is the ride significantly different? At 6' and half an inch, is that silly? I weight 200-220. It varies due to holiday seasons

    Right now I am looking at the citizen tokyo, because of the small size and entry level price. I am aware that it does not have the best components, but I am willing to slowly upgrade if I like it.(the first thing would be a fifty tooth crank, 46 gear inches is to little.)


    Any suggestions based on what I have given here? I have not bought a new bike in years, and folders are like recumbents to me, mysterious and strange

  2. #2
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    What is your budget?
    Speed Uno
    Dawes Kingpin 2speed

  3. #3
    LET'S ROLL 1nterceptor's Avatar
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    My bike has 20" wheels and folds in the middle like the Dahons.

    DSCF1403 by 1nterceptor, on Flickr

    To make it fit my luggage, I had to remove the following: wheels, seatpost,
    derailer. The pedals fold and the stem w/ handle bar pops out of the frame.

    DSCF1457 by 1nterceptor, on Flickr

    I used a lot of plastic bags as liners and to prevent scratches. The bike survived
    the roundtrip flight from the US to China with a few connecting flights.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fi01...hannel&list=UL

  4. #4
    lowlife bottom feeder BassNotBass's Avatar
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    Having to partially disassemble even a folding bike is expected in most cases (I think the Brompton is an exception). Just as long as you adhere to the ≤62" limit and refer to the bike as "sports equipment", "mobility device" or "transport dolly" you shouldn't be charged a bike fee by an airline rep who doesn't understand the rules.

    I don't think the Tokyo will fit a flight case that meets the ≤62" limit because of it's frame shape. That high curved frame tube and the angle of the hinge will most likely exceed a larger than 20"X20" fold (a 20" width being pretty standard for large flight cases). I have a modified Citizen Miami which will easily fit into a 29X20X12 case once taken apart... I had to make a removable hinge pin in order to pack the frame in two pieces so it fits in a case as narrow as 20" otherwise I would have needed a case 24" wide, so that may be an option for you worth considering.

    In case you haven't seen this vid, it's pretty cool and has been my inspiration for creating a "poor-man's" version of the set up. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwStL94Xudo
    I plan on living forever... so far so good.

  5. #5
    Senior Member shipwreck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dynocoaster View Post
    What is your budget?
    Laughably low. I was actualy thinking about selling off some of my vintage parts collection to fund this idea, I have some cool nervar cranks, old british and Italian stems and stuff, some mid eightys miyata touring frames that are to small for me.

    So, seriously I might be able to swing four or five hundred. I would prefer to find a good deal. I have a few months before my first flight.
    And I live in the sticks of Arkansas. no where to test anything out, no shops in 300 miles carry any selection of folders.

  6. #6
    Senior Member shipwreck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BassNotBass View Post

    I don't think the Tokyo will fit a flight case that meets the ≤62" limit because of it's frame shape. That high curved frame tube and the angle of the hinge will most likely exceed a larger than 20"X20" fold (a 20" width being pretty standard for large flight cases). I have a modified Citizen Miami which will easily fit into a 29X20X12 case once taken apart... I had to make a removable hinge pin in order to pack the frame in two pieces so it fits in a case as narrow as 20" otherwise I would have needed a case 24" wide, so that may be an option for you worth considering.
    Thats good info, thanks.

  7. #7
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Might like a Bike friday Travel Bike.. they are made to suitcase pack ,
    and to do that are made to come apart, somewhat, and the rear section folds
    along side the main portion.. 406 and 451 wheel types ..

    component options are many.. look at 2nd hand ones on thEbay,
    and the company's own trade up stocks.

  8. #8
    Senior Member shipwreck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1nterceptor View Post
    My bike has 20" wheels and folds in the middle like the Dahons.

    DSCF1403 by 1nterceptor, on Flickr

    To make it fit my luggage, I had to remove the following: wheels, seatpost,
    derailer. The pedals fold and the stem w/ handle bar pops out of the frame.

    DSCF1457 by 1nterceptor, on Flickr

    I used a lot of plastic bags as liners and to prevent scratches. The bike survived
    the roundtrip flight from the US to China with a few connecting flights.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fi01...hannel&list=UL
    That is kind of what I was thinking about. I could probably swing a Dahon, was thinking about a single speed for packing simplicity, thinking I would buy a speed7 and convert it to single, save the parts to convert back.

    Have to really look into the folded size of everything.

  9. #9
    Senior Member shipwreck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
    Might like a Bike friday Travel Bike.. they are made to suitcase pack ,
    and to do that are made to come apart, somewhat, and the rear section folds
    along side the main portion.. 406 and 451 wheel types ..

    component options are many.. look at 2nd hand ones on thEbay,
    and the company's own trade up stocks.
    I have been watching them on ebay, they all seem to end up going for over a grand. At that price, I would prefer to buy new, but would have to use a credit card, a serious no no.

    Wish I could swing it, but as satisfying as my life and artsy career are, one of the side effects is a lower budget. Still paying off the doctor from my bicycle accident(hit and run), along with the lost work time, so that is sort of a factor right now.

    I will continue to look though, because you never know.
    Another consideration for me, is that a lower cost item won't hurt as bad when it gets stolen or lost.

  10. #10
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    This guy does it with a Tern Verge x20 -- definitely out of your price range, but maybe the same can be done with the lower line Tern models.

    http://www.planbike.com/2012/05/fly-...ransit-no.html

  11. #11
    Senior Member shipwreck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NeoteriX View Post
    This guy does it with a Tern Verge x20 -- definitely out of your price range, but maybe the same can be done with the lower line Tern models.

    http://www.planbike.com/2012/05/fly-...ransit-no.html
    Thats pretty cool. Read his review on the bike, sounds great, but yeah, more than I would want or be able to spend. Looked at the Tern link D8, http://www.nycewheels.com/tern-foldi...e-link-d8.html that looks like a nice bike, it is now on my list. I would just have to save a little longer. The review mentions a plastic bit on the latches as a weak link. That sounds dodgy, as I found several requests for spares when researching.

    So, yeah, thanks, I had not heard of the Tern. The quality of parts is a big factor, I know, and the specs are much nicer than the citizen bikes. It I also like the higher wieght limit, 242 pounds, I could have a substantial seat bag. Some of the reviews say that the Tern frame is stiffer than the Dahon. That sounds good.

    Been playing around with a 20 inch wheelset I have, and I think that if I deflated the tires I can absolutely do a 20 inch bike.


    I hit Denver twice a year, and the thought of not having a bike isn't actualy as bad as maybe trying to ride on a little crappy one. over 300 miles of paved trails... I usualy do at least 60 miles the first day I am there, so something stiffer would be nice. Don't get me wrong, I would love to be able to take a Raliegh 20, after doing lots of customizing alla sheldon brown, but they don't pack small enough.

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