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  1. #1
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    Two Bromptons ordered

    I NEVER thought I'd be here. A couple of years ago I looked at Bromptons and Dahons. I totally bought into the "tiny wheels suck" hype. I thought they were cool, and I'd have added one to my herd as a curiosity, but I told myself "no" because I really did not think I'd ride one and I certainly did not need one.

    I have a Retrovelo Paula and I *love* it. I also have a Raleigh SuperCourse mixte that I powder coated pink and built with a NuVinci hub. I love that one too. My other Raleigh is the classic step-through Sports 3-speed, with new alloy rims, dynamo lighting and a basket. Do I love it? Yes, but not as much as the former two. Number four is a 1975 Centurion Super LeMans. I intended to leave it a "beater" but I am incapable of owning a beater...

    I live in Seattle now, in the city. I work at home. It's easier to walk to the grocery store than to haul Paula down (even in the elevator), lock her, shop, and ride back. I did load up my Arkel Shoppers with stuff for Goodwill last week. My sister lives 12 miles away, but one bus gets me to within one mile of her house and I don't mind the walk. Yes, I did heave my Retrovelo onto the bike rack on the bus once. It was not fun.

    That same bus drops my husband off about a mile from his work. A folding bike would allow him to catch a later bus in the morning and shave about 30 minutes from his commute each day.

    I'm just not riding that much here. My full sized bikes are more trouble than they are worth.

    I think the Brompton is the answer. DH loves folding bikes. He once owed a Hon. It was stolen years ago. We can catch the bus to my sister's house and ride the last mile. We could ride TO her house and bus it home if we were not up to the ride back. We can grocery shop without the added hassle of locking our bikes. We might even credit-card tour (he's not into camping). The bikes can live in the closet by the front door.

    I have made the difficult decision to sell my Raleigh Sports and donate the Centurion to a community bike shop. They simply are not being ridden, and I still have two other full-sized bikes.

    I test rode at a very LBS here. It was instant love. They have no stock and will get none in before May. They did not seem very eager to sell me one. I custom ordered for DH from Clever Cycles and bought one from stock for me (not the color I wanted, but I don't care THAT much). I'll let him ride mine to work while we wait for his bicycle to arrive. I went with the 3-speed -12%. My Sports is geared lower and it has been just fine everywhere I've ridden it. I realized that, as cool as the NuVinci is, it's overkill for me. Yes, it's hilly here. I walk up the super steep hills or find flatter routes. I'm not interested in going fast, I'm interested in going far -- and near. I'll upgrade to six speed if I really need to, but I don't think I will. I have the pink bike for those times when I feel the need for unlimited gears.

    I NEVER thought I'd buy a Brompton. Now I should have one tomorrow or Friday. The custom order will not be here until April.

  2. #2
    LET'S ROLL 1nterceptor's Avatar
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    Brommies are very practical. I'm in the same boat that,
    I never thought I'd own another bike; I have a roadbike
    and a Dahon clone. But I test drove one and saw how
    compact they were; ended up buying one. Now realizing
    I wanted the lowered 6 speed gearing plus a lighter bike;
    I just ordered another Brompton - Ti model w/ lowered
    gearing. I'll sell my current bike when the new one comes
    in.

  3. #3
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    I saw the video that you posted when you picked up #1.

    Since I was buying two, ti was prohibitively expensive. Lighting is not negotiable. And I do already know that a 3-speed meets my needs. But you never know... I can't imagine selling my Retrovelo. We'll see. I don't allow myself to keep bikes that I don't ride.

  4. #4
    Senior Member badmother's Avatar
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    Good thinking, congrats on the bikes!

    Here is one more lady who did not think she would want a Brompton, and now ride it a lot http://lovelybike.blogspot.no/search/label/Brompton I need to finish the modifying of mine plus some new tyres before the summer.

    Tell us more about pix and stuff of your bikes! What are you doing for bags/ luggage? Buying something or just get the frame and DIY the rest?
    °Empty drums make a lot of noice... (Old Hungarian proverb).

  5. #5
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    Congrats on the new folders.
    Speed Uno
    Dawes Kingpin 2speed

  6. #6
    Member seadragonpisces's Avatar
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    I never thought I would get a Brompton either, get less than 20'' wheels having owned a few beach cruisers, MTB and a Pacific Reach and a Dahon Jetstream P8. I have finally given in and on Friday will be putting my deposit down on one of the Ltd Ed S6L Barcelona's that are coming out, should be getting it around w/c 8 April I am told, cant wait. Am going to covert it to an R and get some lights on it.
    Last edited by seadragonpisces; 02-27-13 at 05:43 PM.
    Brompton Barcelona, Dahon Jetstream EX, Bickerton

  7. #7
    Senior Member smallwheeler's Avatar
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    mmm..

    datbromp.jpg

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by badmother View Post
    Good thinking, congrats on the bikes!

    Here is one more lady who did not think she would want a Brompton, and now ride it a lot http://lovelybike.blogspot.no/search/label/Brompton I need to finish the modifying of mine plus some new tyres before the summer.

    Tell us more about pix and stuff of your bikes! What are you doing for bags/ luggage? Buying something or just get the frame and DIY the rest?
    I did read V's Brompton posts. My riding experience has mirrored hers, without being influenced by it, although my road riding abruptly ended when I was hit by a car. I did see the Brompton on some posts and thought "Why the hell is she riding that?"

    Last summer I test rode a Giant folder at the same very LBS. I did not like it at all. I never tried the Brompton, because I just was not interested. I see now that they are very practical. DH keeps telling me how much he loves folding bikes. In the small city of Mobile, AL -- flat and low-traffic in the areas where I rode for transportation -- the Retrovelo was awesome. So was the Raleigh Sports. But now, I may just be the perfect candidate for a Brompton.

    Luggage: I ordered a T-Bag for bike #1 and a Carradice City Folder for #2. I may change that to a T-Bag. I HAVE SO MANY BAGS/BASKETS/RACKS! I have two Arkel Shoppers. I took one with me, hoping that I could mount it on the bag frame. It is just a wee bit too big, which REALLY bums me out. I have some Wald folding baskets and I thought about getting a frame and zip tying one to the frame. While that would be cool, why would I bother? It won't hold as much as a T-Bag.

    I have TWO Detours bags -- a rack trunk and a handlebar bag/rack trunk. They may need to go back to REI. The rear rack on the Retrovelo -- I hate it. It's too short. I have not mounted a rack on the pink mixte yet and a handlebar bag is out of the question (drop bars, and yes, I tried it).

  9. #9
    Senior Member badmother's Avatar
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    the Arkel bags that are too big for the frame: Sure the frame can not be modifyed? May not be worth it but If you already have too many. I (and others) have modifyed one frame to be narrower to be used with a certain bag. I am sure it can be made slightly higher also but not much.

    I think when you use a Brompton as your main transport a T bag (or similar) is something you need. You may need /want something smaller also for when you know you are not going to carry anything, just some tools, a drink and a jacket. A T- bag is quite a big "sail" when you do not need it.
    °Empty drums make a lot of noice... (Old Hungarian proverb).

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by badmother View Post
    the Arkel bags that are too big for the frame: Sure the frame can not be modifyed? May not be worth it but If you already have too many. I (and others) have modifyed one frame to be narrower to be used with a certain bag. I am sure it can be made slightly higher also but not much.

    I think when you use a Brompton as your main transport a T bag (or similar) is something you need. You may need /want something smaller also for when you know you are not going to carry anything, just some tools, a drink and a jacket. A T- bag is quite a big "sail" when you do not need it.
    That's why I have not made up my mind about the T bag vs the Carradice.

    I would need the frame to be about 1" taller to accomodate the Arkel Shoppers. Seems like more work than just using a T bag or a Carradice. But -- pics? Links?

    Oh, did I mention that I have THREE Timbuk2 bags (x-small, small & large)? They have served me well, and I still love them. But I do need to reduce the bag-hoarding. I may also have a SealLine roll-top backpack (which was awesome for a weekend trip to Vancouver).

  11. #11
    Senior Member Ekdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ilynne View Post
    That's why I have not made up my mind about the T bag vs the Carradice.

    I would need the frame to be about 1" taller to accomodate the Arkel Shoppers. Seems like more work than just using a T bag or a Carradice. But -- pics? Links?

    Oh, did I mention that I have THREE Timbuk2 bags (x-small, small & large)? They have served me well, and I still love them. But I do need to reduce the bag-hoarding. I may also have a SealLine roll-top backpack (which was awesome for a weekend trip to Vancouver).
    I just took delivery of a Brompton M6R a week ago. Love it!

    I'm a bit of bag hoarder myself, having acquired over the years a full set of Carradice 'Super C' panniers, a Carradice Rack Top bag, a pair of Ortlieb Greenpeace front panniers, and a Carradice 'Slim' Saddlebag. The problem is, I don't think any of these, with the exception of the Slim, which can be attached to my telescoping seat post with a Seatpost Quick Release (SQR), will work well with the Brompton, so I've ordered a T Bag, and I'll probably eventually want to get something smaller for when I'm carrying fewer items.

  12. #12
    Senior Member badmother's Avatar
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    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Brompt...nt=50&dir=desc

    I think you need to join the Yahoo Brompton group to wiew them but that is something you should do anyway. Also lots of great Bromptonporn on Flickr.
    °Empty drums make a lot of noice... (Old Hungarian proverb).

  13. #13
    jur
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    Yep a Brommie sure is practical. That is worth lots - more than super light weight and a gazillion gears. What good are these when you aren't actually riding it? But a Brommie makes it dead easy. I have just recently installed a solid tyre on mine's back wheel. It slows me down a tiny amount but far less so than a puncture. With the dyno hub in the front - well it's super dead easy.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Ekdog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jur View Post
    Yep a Brommie sure is practical. That is worth lots - more than super light weight and a gazillion gears. What good are these when you aren't actually riding it? But a Brommie makes it dead easy. I have just recently installed a solid tyre on mine's back wheel. It slows me down a tiny amount but far less so than a puncture. With the dyno hub in the front - well it's super dead easy.
    Wow! A solid tyre? Why not just install a Schwalbe Marathon Plus? I've ridden thousands of kilometres on mine with nary a puncture. I'm having one put on the back wheel of my Brompton tomorrow. They don't roll as quickly as some other tyres, but they'll beat a solid tyre hands down for comfort.

    I'm going to keep the standard Marathon on the front. I want to observe the mechanic when he installs the Plus as I understand changing a back tyre can be a little tricky.
    Last edited by Ekdog; 02-28-13 at 05:20 AM.

  15. #15
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    It's on the FedEx vehicle for delivery! So exciting! Of course, even though this is my bicycle, I won't get to use it much, since I will let my husband take it to work while we wait for his to be delivered .

    I will, OF COURSE, post photos later.

  16. #16
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    Just to wet your appetite



    I use small e assist motors (adds 1.4kg) on my bikes including this M2L-X

    Jerry
    Brompton M2L (SRAM A2), Brompton M2L(X), Dahon Uno (SRAM A2), Both Swift Xootr & Moulton TSR2 now gone

  17. #17
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Good for you! And as a bonus, you won't believe how many times the Brompton can be used as a conversation starter!
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

  18. #18
    Member seadragonpisces's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
    Good for you! And as a bonus, you won't believe how many times the Brompton can be used as a conversation starter!
    Depends if you mean in a good way or not as a conversation starter .

    In my village people would think I was a bit limp-wristed if you know what I mean and they will do for sure once they see my new Orange and Blue Brompton in April.

    My partner and I plan to move back to a town again sometime in the Summer, where they are a bit more open-minded about things a bit different than the norm :-)
    Brompton Barcelona, Dahon Jetstream EX, Bickerton

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
    Good for you! And as a bonus, you won't believe how many times the Brompton can be used as a conversation starter!
    I've found that blue hair works well, too.

    The bike is already named: Tottie.

  20. #20
    Senior Member Ozonation's Avatar
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    Well, my Brompton is a sexy and stylish sage green! A nice, neutral, metrosexual colour of high class and taste!

    My wife says I'm a bit of a force to be reckoned with when I enter a room, so I doubt the bike I ride has much influence on what people think of me! Not always a positive thing I suppose...

    And for people who can't accept brightly coloured Bromptons and infer things about riders... well, the Bromptons come with that extra air pump... and it could always find a more... ahem, ah, accessible storage spot, eh?
    Rivendell Sam Hillborne and Hunqapillar; Brompton M6R Sage Green; Salsa Mukluk 3 FAT Bike; Nerdy Academic; Nikonian; Wing Chun; and a Patridge in a Pear Tree.

  21. #21
    Senior Member badmother's Avatar
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    Take a close look at this Brompton. Lots of cool mods.

    Also look at the two wheels on the fender. This is what you normally just find on the R bikes. Is it an "axel" (not sure what they call it) from a skateboard? I expect they had to reinforce the fender to make it stable enough. http://www.flickr.com/photos/guuwata...n/photostream/

    If you look trough the pictures you find lots of cool bags and a special frontrack for Brompton atatched to the frontblock that makes it easyer to atatch other bags than the B specific bags. May be interesting for the OP. http://www.flickr.com/photos/guuwata...n/photostream/

    Also show the clickfix system used on the B stem.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/guuwata...n/photostream/

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/guuwata...n/photostream/
    Last edited by badmother; 03-01-13 at 03:09 AM.
    °Empty drums make a lot of noice... (Old Hungarian proverb).

  22. #22
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    Presenting Tottie:

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/zcfs9sbui6...2012.01.21.jpg

    At REI in the shopping cart:

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/i4fsul355q...2013.04.41.jpg

    I returned my beloved Detours bags. Unfortunately they don't work on any of my bikes.

    At MOHAI:

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/vnxucas3j3...2013.33.50.jpg

    [Bikeforums, it is RIDICULOUSLY hard to post images.]

    I got a (vegan) hot dog downtown.

    Holy cow, I really must be a weenie. I got the 3-speed -12% and I will probably back off to -18%. I never wanted a higher gear than 2, but I can imagine wanting a lower gear than 1. When I thing of the mile-long hill to get to my sister's house -- yeah, I need to swap to the super-granny gearing. I really am not interested in riding fast. I may not want to get off a bike once I am on one, but I am very over riding fast.

    Yes, the saddle is much too far forward. I'll let DH ride it and decide where he wants the saddle. This is not really my bike until his gets here.

    Tried "shopping cart mode" at TJ's. Eh. I'll fold it an put it in the cart next time.

    Outside TJ's someone watched me unfold the bike and was impressed.

    I love the T bag. It's big, it's versatile, it was comfortable to carry over my shoulder. I could see having a smaller bag for those times that you don't need a big bag, but I never know when I might want to buy groceries. I like the two compartments on the back that you can reach from the bike. I can imagine a very leisurely ride with a Thermos and a picnic lunch packed.

    I'm very, very pleased. The second bike can't get here fast enough.
    Last edited by ilynne; 02-28-13 at 06:08 PM. Reason: spelling/grammar

  23. #23
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    Oh yeah -- Tottie sits folded up next to DH's desk. We'll see how long it takes him to notice it when he gets home.

  24. #24
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    A stock bike has a 13t cog, on the BSR, you can replace it with a 14 or 15t one, to lower the gear range,
    You might like that, It's an EZ change.

    for super low gear, I really like My 2 speed Schlumpf Swiss Mountain Drive IG crank.. but it was expensive,
    then , and the Swiss Franc keeps rising in exchange rate.. so retail went up, U$D 200. more.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 03-01-13 at 01:27 PM.

  25. #25
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    After riding it yesterday, we both agree that we'd like a lower gear, but can't see much reason to even use the current higher gear. Clever Cycles will swap the crank, so I'll have them do it when I go in to pick up the second bike, which is already ordered that way. If I want to go fast, I'll ride the Retrovelo or the Raleigh mixte -- my other two bikes are going to new homes (70s Centurion and 70s Raleigh Sports). I really don't want to go any faster than that. I love riding, but I don't miss spending the entire ride watching the back wheel of the bike in front of me.

    I thought about the Schlumpf. I can't see the point, though, when what I need is a bit lower and I won't ever even use 3.

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