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  1. #1
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    Petite lady, steel folding bike: how to carry?

    I am a 5-foot-1, 45 kg, 19-year-old female intending to buy a folding bike. As a steel frame is as much as my budget will allow, I will be forced to carry 15 + kg (that's about 1/3 of my body weight) of metal onto public transport and up/down several steps while crossing footbridges, seeing as my lifestyle requires me to travel around the city, from my university campus and back home.

    Any tips on how this might be possible without my injuring myself?

    Thaks

  2. #2
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    Why a steel frame ? I am not sure that aluminum ones are any more expensive. I wonder in your case if a second hand Bickerton would be the answer ?

    Depends on where you are based I guess ?

    Problem with second hand I guess would be that you would need to be handy to fix/maintain it. My daughters/wife rely on me to maintain their bikes.


    Regards

    Jerry
    Last edited by jerrysimon; 03-28-13 at 04:01 AM.
    Brompton M2L (SRAM A2), Brompton M2L(X), Dahon Uno (SRAM A2), Both Swift Xootr & Moulton TSR2 now gone

  3. #3
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    Thanks, Jerry. I am from the Philippines. Quite hard to source a bike that isn't a Dahon, or else settle for something imported from Taiwan or China (as I've been planning -- a Peerless ranks first in my list of options).

  4. #4
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Use something similar to this cover from Tern? I am going to make something similar for my Dahon Classic III. Basically a canvas clamshell with a shoulder strap and a couple of handles sized to fit the bike.

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
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    "Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
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    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by wahoonc View Post
    Use something similar to this cover from Tern? I am going to make something similar for my Dahon Classic III. Basically a canvas clamshell with a shoulder strap and a couple of handles sized to fit the bike.

    Aaron
    Interesting. I've seen a few bags like that on sale here. I just hope it doesn't pull my shoulder right off

    Earlier I stuffed some 30 lbs worth of weights into a traveling bag just to get the feel of carrying a similar load single-handedly. Suffice to say I could only hobble the first few meters before having to put it down.

    I've been thinking about just rolling the bike around (like a trolley) and folding it only when there are issues of space (say, when I'm sitting in public transport and other commuters are going to curse me for taking up so much room). Perhaps it would be much easier to carry the bike up the stairs unfolded because its weight would be better distributed that way? Correct me if I'm wrong.

  6. #6
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    Carrying up stairs unfolded is fine, I do it all the time. Better weight distribution as you say.

    I think at 5'1" hand-carrying a normal folder it would drag on the ground - shoulder bag/strap is the best way to go. 30 lbs over the shoulder is not too onerous for short stretches.

    Remember a 20" folder is a bag of about 9 cubic feet though...
    Last edited by Elvis Shumaker; 03-28-13 at 06:46 AM.

  7. #7
    Senior Member smallwheeler's Avatar
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    foldienewbie, lucky for you, you live in folding bike heaven:

    http://www.sulit.com.ph/index.php/cl...q/folding+bike

  8. #8
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elvis Shumaker View Post
    I think at 5'1" hand-carrying a normal folder it would drag on the ground - shoulder bag/strap is the best way to go.
    Regardless of height, shoulder strap (or bag) is the way to go. It's much easier to carry the weight on your shoulder and use your hands to guide the bike than trying to carry and guide the bike with your hands.

    It's worth playing with it so you can figure out a good way to use a shoulder strap when the bike is both folded and unfolded.

    Cheers,
    Charles
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  9. #9
    Senior Member smallwheeler's Avatar
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    i dont know what your budget is but, these are pretty good: the "gogobike vigor" is a rebranded dahon dove. it is a very good quality single speed aluminum bike that weighs only 7-8 kg. if you buy the gogobike, it is very upgradeable if you decided to trick it out over time. http://peerlessbike.blogspot.com/201...nos-p9999.html



    GOGOBIKE VIGOR P9,500

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by smallwheeler View Post
    foldienewbie, lucky for you, you live in folding bike heaven:

    http://www.sulit.com.ph/index.php/cl...q/folding+bike
    Oh, smallwheeler, I love Sulit for what it is. I do a lot of browsing on the site myself

    I've actually managed to find a couple items that have piqued my interest. I'm just not sure if it would be as good an idea to go secondhand as it would to shoot for brand new, once repair costs and the uncertainty as to the quality of the bike's materials after wear and age have been factored in.

    Here's one:

    http://www.ayosdito.ph/Dahon+Jour+Fo...-5279398-1.htm

    Also:

    http://www.sulit.com.ph/index.php/vi...Position,1-1,1

    and

    http://www.sulit.com.ph/index.php/vi...Position,1-2,2

    I have a slight preference towards the Dahon and the latter Jaguar. The 5.5K Jaguar seems okay but I'm doubting the quality of the materials. Some parts appear rusted in photos.

    Here's the bike I've been intending to buy (Php7,500):

    Crescent-Edited.jpg

    N.W/G.W: 14kgs/15kgs
    Frame: 20 "high carbon steel frame, patented folding frame lock
    Risers: Patent folding risers, aluminum

    Transmission system: SHIMANO 6Speed complete transmission system
    Brake system: front and rear alloy V brake, half aluminum brake handle
    Wheels: Alloy Rims
    Chain: KMC Chain

    Good choice, you think?

    By the way, I've seen the Gogobike before. It has 16" wheels though.

    Last edited by foldienewbie; 03-28-13 at 07:58 AM.

  11. #11
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    Sounds like a CarryMe might work for your needs, they are light, a compact fold, and roll easily when folded.
    Jetstream P11 ; iXi

  12. #12
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    It's quite common that people buy folding bikes specifically for commuting duties and then their situation changes, their work relocates etc., and so their bikes are sold second-hand in very good condition.

    I would make sure the bike you buy is sub-12kg as anything above that can be very awkward to carry. If it's 14kg forget it. Almost certainly go for a Dahon, and almost certainly avoid 16" wheeled bikes that use derailleur gears since they'll be way under-geared.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by chagzuki View Post
    It's quite common that people buy folding bikes specifically for commuting duties and then their situation changes, their work relocates etc., and so their bikes are sold second-hand in very good condition.

    I would make sure the bike you buy is sub-12kg as anything above that can be very awkward to carry. If it's 14kg forget it. Almost certainly go for a Dahon, and almost certainly avoid 16" wheeled bikes that use derailleur gears since they'll be way under-geared.
    Sub-12 kg, for sure. What are things to consider then, if I were to buy secondhand?

    I'm not really much for 16-inchers -- under the impression that 20" is more common.

  14. #14
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    16" inch wheels might not be the worst choice for a very small rider at all. Lighter and smaller to fold too - plus the bikes are usually less expensive and in demand than 20" models.

  15. #15
    Senior Member smallwheeler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by foldienewbie View Post

    Crescent-Edited.jpg

    N.W/G.W: 14kgs/15kgs
    Frame: 20 "high carbon steel frame, patented folding frame lock
    Risers: Patent folding risers, aluminum

    Transmission system: SHIMANO 6Speed complete transmission system
    Brake system: front and rear alloy V brake, half aluminum brake handle
    Wheels: Alloy Rims
    Chain: KMC Chain

    Good choice, you think?

    By the way, I've seen the Gogobike before. It has 16" wheels though.




    this bike looks nice, but considering your usage needs, its really going to be heavy and cumbersome. also, that
    derailleur and cassette are going to be as rusty as any of the used ones from sulit within a month. the greater the number of parts you have on a cheap bike, the greater the amount of attention and maintenance it will require. you can read various threads in this forum about folks who have purchased new, cheap bike because they seemed irresistibly inexpensive and usually you will see this phrase: "seems like a good value for the money". then you will subsequently read posts regarding all of the necessary upgrades that were required to make those bikes enjoyable to ride- new chain, new handlebars, grips, tires, derailleur, etc. when you have a small budget, more parts and pieces = less quality overall. simple is better.

    also, consider the terrain of your commute. is it mostly flat? if so, then maybe a single speed bike will function well. additionally, if you intend to use public transport, a more compact fold is always desirable. going up steps? lighter is better. I've ridden and owned a few cheap bikes and its my opinion they are never worth the money or attention they require.

    im not trying to sell you a gogo bike however, i have ridden one and it is very well made, light (at 7kg it must be one of the lightest folding bikes made), nimble, and above all, fun to ride!also, its compatible with a lot of dahon accessories and other companies like litepro make upgrade parts specifically for them.
    Last edited by smallwheeler; 03-28-13 at 08:38 AM.

  16. #16
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Have you considered padding under the nose of the saddle,

    so as to bear some of the weight on your shoulder, while lifting it ?

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by smallwheeler View Post



    this bike looks nice, but considering your usage needs, its really going to be heavy and cumbersome. also, that
    derailleur and cassette are going to be as rusty as any of the used ones from sulit within a month. the greater the number of parts you have on a cheap bike, the greater the amount of attention and maintenance it will require. you can read various threads in this forum about folks who have purchased new, cheap bike because they seemed irresistibly inexpensive and usually you will see this phrase: "seems like a good value for the money". then you will subsequently read posts regarding all of the necessary upgrades that were required to make those bikes enjoyable to ride- new chain, new handlebars, grips, tires, derailleur, etc. when you have a small budget, more parts and pieces = less quality overall. simple is better.

    also, consider the terrain of your commute. is it mostly flat? if so, then maybe a single speed bike will function well. additionally, if you intend to use public transport, a more compact fold is always desirable. going up steps? lighter is better. I've ridden and owned a few cheap bikes and its my opinion they are never worth the money or attention they require.

    im not trying to sell you a gogo bike however, i have ridden one and it is very well made, light (at 7kg it must be one of the lightest folding bikes made), nimble, and above all, fun to ride!also, its compatible with a lot of dahon accessories and other companies like litepro make upgrade parts specifically for them.
    [/B][/B][/B][/B][/B][/B][/B]
    I'll take a look at the Gogo. Are the handlebars fixed, or removable? Would you happen to know where I can get them for cheap? Or would it be best that I head to the distributor of Peerless (Tryon Marketing, I believe)?

    How about the 16" tires? Aren't they a bit uncommon and difficult to source, at least locally? I fear that they might go "obsolete" soon enough; do tell me if this fear is irrational.

    Whoa, and I realizedthey weren't 16", but 14"! Even more uncommon still...

    (My dad practically insists that I get 20". Says they won't look out of place among more serious bikers' foldies.)

    How about the SGM Storm? It purports to be a wee bit lighter. However, it has disc brakes rather than V and cannot be lightened further.
    Last edited by foldienewbie; 03-28-13 at 09:51 AM.

  18. #18
    LET'S ROLL 1nterceptor's Avatar
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    Kamusta/hello foldienewbie!

    Try to get in touch with Folding Bike Filipinas on Facebook
    and meet with them. They're a bunch of friendly riders on
    different folding bikes. If you go to one of their rides/meetups;
    you'll be able to see and ask questions about different makes
    and models. Some of them own folders with 16in. tires, just
    like me

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kt5Mzmv7hCk

  19. #19
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    Where there is a will, there is a way. Maybe you'll just get super buff after a few weeks!

  20. #20
    Senior Member smallwheeler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by foldienewbie View Post
    I'll take a look at the Gogo. Are the handlebars fixed, or removable? Would you happen to know where I can get them for cheap? Or would it be best that I head to the distributor of Peerless (Tryon Marketing, I believe)?

    How about the 16" tires? Aren't they a bit uncommon and difficult to source, at least locally? I fear that they might go "obsolete" soon enough; do tell me if this fear is irrational.

    Whoa, and I realizedthey weren't 16", but 14"! Even more uncommon still...

    (My dad practically insists that I get 20". Says they won't look out of place among more serious bikers' foldies.)

    How about the SGM Storm? It purports to be a wee bit lighter. However, it has disc brakes rather than V and cannot be lightened further.

    you can easily get any tire.. 14" and 16" wheel sets will fit the gogobike. both sizes are very common, and peerless will have sources for them too. you can change handlebars by adding bar ends or change to bullhorns or drop bars or anything you want. as for your dad's comment, serious is as serious does..












    caveat: pics 1 and 4 show upgrades that cost more than bike itself
    Last edited by smallwheeler; 03-28-13 at 10:26 AM.

  21. #21
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    How about the 16" tires? Aren't they a bit uncommon and difficult to source, at least locally?


    seems doing the research by going to local sources and checking , and seeing for yourself , will answer that.

    I fear that they might go "obsolete" soon enough; do tell me if this fear is irrational.
    Probably irrational , as after selling millions of bikes, they always need replacement tires..

  22. #22
    Senior Member smallwheeler's Avatar
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    Last edited by smallwheeler; 03-28-13 at 11:08 AM.

  23. #23
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    Damn,I'd be all over this one if it was Stateside.

    For the OP,try finding something that rolls well folded,at least you'll only have to oomph it up stairs/steps.

    C'dale BBU('05 and '09)/Super Six/Hooligan8and 3,Kona Dew Deluxe,Novara Buzz/Safari,Surly Big Dummy,Marin Pt Reyes,Giant Defy 1,Schwinn DBX SuperSport/Qualifier,Dahon Speed Pro TT,Brompton S6L

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by foldienewbie View Post
    Interesting. I've seen a few bags like that on sale here. I just hope it doesn't pull my shoulder right off

    Earlier I stuffed some 30 lbs worth of weights into a traveling bag just to get the feel of carrying a similar load single-handedly. Suffice to say I could only hobble the first few meters before having to put it down.

    I've been thinking about just rolling the bike around (like a trolley) and folding it only when there are issues of space (say, when I'm sitting in public transport and other commuters are going to curse me for taking up so much room). Perhaps it would be much easier to carry the bike up the stairs unfolded because its weight would be better distributed that way? Correct me if I'm wrong.
    with your body frame it will be hard lifting a 30lbs bike up and down the stairs. i will suggest getting a dahon curve as it is light and small. easy to lift and you can roll it when folded. i do have a curve sl and it is my regular commute bike. i like it for it's lightness and it's ability to be wheeled when folded. i wouldn't advise a bag for you. as you said before, it could rip your shoulder. just get a light and small folding bike.

  25. #25
    Senior Member antimonysarah's Avatar
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    I have a ~30 pound folding bike, and weak arms (although as I am a chubby woman, my legs have no trouble with the added weight -- it's only arm issues), and I manage. I don't fold it unless I need it small, like getting on the bus or train -- it is much easier to carry unfolded. MUCH easier up stairs unfolded, and it's easier to set it down folded because it's taller unfolded so I don't need to bend over.

    For short carries in small spaces, I flip it up in front of me with both hands -- make sure nothing greasy protrudes at that angle, as you may end up touching it with your knee if climbing stairs (I have to climb up several onto the train sometimes), or propping it up that way (carrying it down the center of a train car and then waiting for my turn to disembark). When carrying it one-handed at your side, get comfortable switching arms every so many steps, in a way you can do so without hitting people while in a crowd. It may look a little silly, but I do that when I need to carry it folded for more than a few feet.

    Mine has 16" wheels, which I haven't had trouble with.

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