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  1. #1
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    Up grading Dahon Helios SL

    I have a Dahon Helios that I let it gather dust very soon after I got it. The thing that threw me off most was the stability. I felt it had very sensitive handling, a quirk you may say. I'm more used to drop bar of road race bike. Would a change to drop bar help improve stability? What about Bullhorn Handlebar? I'd be very grateful for advices from those who have improved handling on similar Dahon.
    BTW any one installed FD and double chain wheels crank on his Dahon?

  2. #2
    Senior Member DVC45's Avatar
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    Folding bikes, in general, has a short wheelbase. This is what mostly accounts for its quirky handling and not much to do with handle bar type used, IMO. Your brain should adopt quickly to this, and get it stable while in motion.

    My folder, even with drop bars, still feels unstable after I ride my full size bike for awhile.

    Last edited by DVC45; 12-06-13 at 08:55 AM.

  3. #3
    Senior Member bargainguy's Avatar
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    I have a Helios SL and a bunch of other folders. Can't say the Helios is any twitchier than the others. Small wheels and a short wheelbase often lead to, um, more responsive handling.

    As far as FD/double chainring on a Dahon: My Helios has a Nexus 8-sp hub with plenty wide gearing. I believe the Nexus 7 was also offered on this model. If the gearing were narrower, I could see how a FD/dual chainring would help, but otherwise, I'm just fine with stock gearing.

  4. #4
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    A longer stem and/or wider handlebar.
    Both of these mean the same distanced travelled by the hand results in less of a turn of the front wheel.

  5. #5
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    Bigger tyres increase the amount of trail.

  6. #6
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    [QUOTE]Folding bikes, in general, has a short wheelbase.This is what mostly accounts for its quirky handling[/QUOTE]

    got data to back that up?

    I have a Bike Friday and a 26" wheel Koga trekking bike they are both right around a Meter in wheel base ..

    what does yours measure?


    The shorter Trail is just Front end geometry, .. wheel base is between wheel contact patches.


    I throw a bunch of stuff in the bags on the front end of the Bi Fri (& likewise the Brommie)
    and the twitchiness is reduced a lot..

    Now the mass of a smaller lighter wheel, With a reduced contact patch, and lower trail,
    acts more responsively to steering Input, so feels twitchy.. that is a bit closer to the situation..

    Bikes with a bigger tire Can have a larger trail, but if the offset of the fork, is larger
    it can have the same trail.

    Porteur Bikes designs, shoot for less trail to work better with a heavy weight ,
    those bundles of Newspapers they were made to speedily deliver ..
    on the fork mounted rack.
    Last edited by fietsbob; 03-24-13 at 02:02 PM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by DVC45 View Post
    Folding bikes, in general, has a short wheelbase. This is what mostly accounts for its quirky handling and not much to do with handle bar type used, IMO. Your brain should adopt quickly to this, and get it stable while in motion.

    My folder, even with drop bars, still feels unstable after I ride my full size bike for awhile.

    darn.... you've got a NICE downtube in there, buddy. i like your drop bar.

    to OP - i think one of the stability issue of your helios is due to it's locking frame.

  8. #8
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    would love to see pics of your Helios SL also...post some..

  9. #9
    Senior Member DVC45's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vmaniqui View Post
    darn.... you've got a NICE downtube in there, buddy. i like your drop bar.

    to OP - i think one of the stability issue of your helios is due to it's locking frame.
    Thanks!
    I miss the neat fold, so it is back to flat bar with bar ends now.

  10. #10
    Senior Member bhkyte's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DVC45 View Post
    Thanks!
    I miss the neat fold, so it is back to flat bar with bar ends now.

    You might want to consider changing to bullbars made from cut down drops turned upside down and fit brifers. I prfer this to bougyt bullbars as I can use the Hood postion. I have got a mezzo to fold only 3inches wider using shorter bull bars. My Brompton fold as compact as a standard Brompton despite full length drop equivalent using a dahon adores stem (pic 3). It does add another folding stage to the Brompton however

    My Downube NS8 was much more compact with bull bars on than drops.picture 9
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by bhkyte; 03-29-13 at 08:57 AM.
    Dual drive Mezzo (GOLD), Dual Drive Mezzo with bullbars (black), White Brompton thingy with Dahon Androes stem and bull bars. Birdie (old sytle) 7 speed. Downtube NS8.

  11. #11
    Senior Member DVC45's Avatar
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    Will try that someday.

    Thanks!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by bhkyte View Post
    You might want to consider changing to bullbars made from cut down drops turned upside down and fit brifers. I prfer this to bougyt bullbars as I can use the Hood postion. I have got a mezzo to fold only 3inches wider using shorter bull bars. My Brompton fold as compact as a standard Brompton despite full length drop equivalent using a dahon adores stem (pic 3). It does add another folding stage to the Brompton however

    My Downube NS8 was much more compact with bull bars on than drops.picture 9
    Thanks for the photo album. Now I've got to go and get my Helios cleaned and oiled by the LBS.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Winfried's Avatar
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    Out of curiosity, is it possible to replace the original chairing with a double chainring?

    http://blog.goo.ne.jp/huqdog/e/9ea87...61343720a915b6

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