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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 04-07-13, 01:16 PM   #1
coolnyc
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Need New Tires? Current: 16" Folder with 35max PSI tire

Hello,

I just bought origami fox bike. I feel like it's slow. My friend brought to my attention that the tire psi might be too low which causing higher roll resistance

Current tire is Duro 16x1.75 (35psi max)

If i buy new tire like Big Apple 16x2 or Kwest 16x1.5 will i be going faster?

do i need to get new tube with it too?
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Old 04-07-13, 01:56 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by coolnyc View Post
Hello,

I just bought origami fox bike. I feel like it's slow. My friend brought to my attention that the tire psi might be too low which causing higher roll resistance

Current tire is Duro 16x1.75 (35psi max)

If i buy new tire like Big Apple 16x2 or Kwest 16x1.5 will i be going faster?

do i need to get new tube with it too?
Probably not, although you might feel a little faster (and the bike more responsive) with new tyres. Big Apples smooth out the ride noticeably.
No need to change the tubes for these.
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Old 04-07-13, 04:33 PM   #3
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Make sure you get the right size tire. There are several different 16" wheels;Dahon has uses 305,Brompton uses 349.
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Old 04-07-13, 05:15 PM   #4
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Ok thank you.
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Old 04-07-13, 06:41 PM   #5
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I think that if anything you will find that the bike goes slower with wider tires (like Big Apples) than with what you have now, although the ride will improve. This is not going to be a "speedy" bike no matter what tires you put on it. In addition, the absence of quick release hubs, and the presence of both a drum brake and an IGH (internal gear hub) on the rear wheel is going to make changing those tires out a bit of a chore. Hopefully you will not get a flat and won't have to change tires for that reason.

I would question how much additional utility you will get out of that bike with the upgraded tires, and might refrain from putting any additional funds into this bike. My suggestion would be to enjoy the bike for what it is now, and then if you want something speedier and better later, that you resell it and buy a higher end bike with the funds you saved by not upgrading this one.
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Old 04-07-13, 07:17 PM   #6
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you're wrong about the tires (BAs), but you are definitely right about that bike..
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Old 04-07-13, 08:30 PM   #7
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you're wrong about the tires (BAs), but you are definitely right about that bike..
I actually owned "that bike" for a couple of days, and also own a Curve D3, which similarly has internal hub gearing with 3 gears, and which has BA tires. I rode the two bikes back to back 5 miles at a time on the same route, which is a mixture of hills and flats, twice in two days. It was my impression that the wider BA tires made the ride on the Curve D3 more pleasant, but at the same time there was more rolling resistance which was noticeable. On balance, the Curve D3 is a much more pleasant bike to ride and a much better built bike.

I stand by my observation, which is based on my own experience riding these two rather similar 3 speed internal hub geared 16" wheel bikes.
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Old 04-07-13, 09:37 PM   #8
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It was my impression that the wider BA tires made the ride on the Curve D3 more pleasant, but at the same time there was more rolling resistance which was noticeable.
more rolling resistance relative to.. what? also, what psi?

http://www.balloonbikes.com/en/
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Old 04-07-13, 10:51 PM   #9
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more rolling resistance relative to.. what? also, what psi?

http://www.balloonbikes.com/en/
Of course, my observations were not the result of "precise testing," so I can't say for sure. I did pump all the tires up to around 50 psi, but the floor pump I used wasn't really designed for tires with such little "room" in between the valve and the spokes and the rim, so it was a real pain in the ass getting the pump attached and then detached, and a certain amount of air pressure was "lost" on removal of the pump (I tried to compensate for that by pumping the tires up to around 55 psi, then removing the pump). All the tires were however "firm" when I did ride the bikes. So perhaps I put "too much" air into the tires on the Fox, but I think had I put less than 50 lbs in, the bike would have ridden even worse than it did. I was actually unaware until reading this thread that the tires were intended to have only 35 psi put into them.

What I can say with certainty is that the Origami Fox did not go any slower, with the same amount of pedaling effort, than did the Curve D3. I can also say that I enjoyed riding the Dahon, and did not enjoy riding the Fox, although I would not say that I "hated" it.

I do feel comfortable saying that putting Big Apples on an Origami Fox is not going to transform it into being a "speedy" bike, nor will it make it something it is not, e.g. anything other than a low budget 16" folding bike. It is not uncommon in the bike world for people to buy bikes with nice frames that economize on price by using lower quality components which can later be upgraded, resulting in a better bike. With the Fox, the frame itself is not of high enough quality to justify that effort, which most certainly will not be rewarded.
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Old 04-07-13, 11:28 PM   #10
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go by the ETRO numbers schwalbe has molds for many tires sizes, all are good.
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Old 04-08-13, 12:00 AM   #11
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go by the ETRO numbers schwalbe has molds for many tires sizes, all are good.
Thor has this link on his site to a video about Schwalbe and their design and production methods: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...&v=M9RzJAWvOMQ

It is well worth watching and gave me considerable confidence in the brand and how they do things. It is rare for a manufacturer to give credit to their suppliers, as Schwalbe so clearly does in this video for the company that actually manufactures their tires. I'm assuming that manufacturing tires in Germany would entail enormously increased costs and environmental regulations, that are not present in Indonesia. Also, the raw materials needed in manufacturing are presumably much closer to the plant they use than they are to Germany. Nonetheless, it is refreshing to see a famous company give credit where credit is due. I'm sure there are several other very good bike tire manufacturers out there, but perhaps none of the rest of them, companies like Continental and Michelin, limit themselves solely to bicycle tires.
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Old 04-08-13, 08:11 AM   #12
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I think that if anything you will find that the bike goes slower with wider tires (like Big Apples) than with what you have now, although the ride will improve. This is not going to be a "speedy" bike no matter what tires you put on it. In addition, the absence of quick release hubs, and the presence of both a drum brake and an IGH (internal gear hub) on the rear wheel is going to make changing those tires out a bit of a chore. Hopefully you will not get a flat and won't have to change tires for that reason.

I would question how much additional utility you will get out of that bike with the upgraded tires, and might refrain from putting any additional funds into this bike. My suggestion would be to enjoy the bike for what it is now, and then if you want something speedier and better later, that you resell it and buy a higher end bike with the funds you saved by not upgrading this one.
Not familiar with drum brakes (mine are coaster), but isn't that just one more screw to undo? The Shimano 3-speed is no problem, just one allen key needed, and re-adjustment is automatic. Probably a minute's work in total.
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Old 04-08-13, 08:21 AM   #13
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Not familiar with drum brakes (mine are coaster), but isn't that just one more screw to undo? The Shimano 3-speed is no problem, just one allen key needed, and re-adjustment is automatic. Probably a minute's work in total.
I think you are correct, but to someone not familiar with working on bikes, it could be a hassle. Also, it is just not worth doing with this bike, which I'd just use until I no longer liked it, then replace with something better.
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Old 04-08-13, 08:30 AM   #14
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I still think the best accessory for a folding bike is a second folding bike. For the winter, for the wet, for the pub, for the car - always good to have.

I justified new tyres on grounds of safety, but they do make riding a lot more enjoyable for a small outlay.

Granted, I doubt anyone gets measurably quicker by 'upgrading', not on a 3-speed anyway.
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Old 04-08-13, 08:56 AM   #15
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Purchases, especially those for personal enjoyment, do not need justification. I make unjustifiable purchases nearly every day. Even for me, new tires for this bike would not make the cut.

I had originally intended to put clipless pedals and new tires on it, but once I got a good look at it and actually rode it, I simply wanted to rid myself of it. I owned this bike for 2 days and then donated it, with about 10 or 15 miles on it, to a local thrift shop that benefits a worthwhile charity. I was quite glad to be rid of it and to get it out of my garage. Not having it in the garage means I don't get reminded every day of this purchase, a good thing in my view :-)
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Old 04-08-13, 09:27 AM   #16
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16" Big Apples are fast and wider tyres tend to have a lower rolling resistance. IMO wheels that small really ask for a tyre which mitigates their disadvantages and Big Apples do that best. Whereas on 20" wheels one can feel the extra rotating mass with heavier tyres on 16" wheels it makes no difference.
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Old 04-08-13, 01:17 PM   #17
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Whereas on 20" wheels one can feel the extra rotating mass with heavier tyres on 16" wheels it makes no difference.
The better (Liteskin?) versions of the Big Apple are actually slightly lighter than standard basic tyres, as the sidewalls are very lightweight.
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Old 04-22-13, 05:17 PM   #18
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I ended up buying Marathon Racer for $20/ea. I filled it up to 75psi. That tire is fast! I was able to keep out with other people. My top speed today is 17mph and my avg is 10-12mph unlike before I was doing 7-9 mph
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Old 04-22-13, 10:22 PM   #19
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Sounds like you found a good solution. Enjoy your new bike!
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Old 05-25-13, 06:21 PM   #20
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I actually owned "that bike" for a couple of days, and also own a Curve D3, which similarly has internal hub gearing with 3 gears, and which has BA tires. I rode the two bikes back to back 5 miles at a time on the same route, which is a mixture of hills and flats, twice in two days. It was my impression that the wider BA tires made the ride on the Curve D3 more pleasant, but at the same time there was more rolling resistance which was noticeable. On balance, the Curve D3 is a much more pleasant bike to ride and a much better built bike.
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I had originally intended to put clipless pedals and new tires on it, but once I got a good look at it and actually rode it, I simply wanted to rid myself of it. I owned this bike for 2 days and then donated it, with about 10 or 15 miles on it, to a local thrift shop that benefits a worthwhile charity. I was quite glad to be rid of it and to get it out of my garage. Not having it in the garage means I don't get reminded every day of this purchase, a good thing in my view :-)
Can you provide more details on why the Fox did not live up to your expectations / why you felt it inferior to the Dahon Curve? Thanks!
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Old 05-25-13, 06:40 PM   #21
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Can you provide more details on why the Fox did not live up to your expectations / why you felt it inferior to the Dahon Curve? Thanks!
It was a cheaply made generic product with a very poorly designed folding mechanism that did not work properly. When compared with other folding bikes I own I could see no reason why I would ever use it, and hence I got rid of it.
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Old 05-25-13, 09:44 PM   #22
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It was a cheaply made generic product with a very poorly designed folding mechanism that did not work properly. When compared with other folding bikes I own I could see no reason why I would ever use it, and hence I got rid of it.
Thanks for the quick replay! So, the back-wheel folding mechanism was poorly designed? Are the other folding bikes in the same price range? This is not an instance of you comparing it to bikes of a different class, correct?
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Old 05-25-13, 10:43 PM   #23
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Thanks for the quick replay! So, the back-wheel folding mechanism was poorly designed? Are the other folding bikes in the same price range? This is not an instance of you comparing it to bikes of a different class, correct?
Yes and no. At least in the USA, there is not a huge range of 16" folding bikes to choose from. Some of them, such as Brompton and the Bike Friday 16" bike are in a whole different league than the Origami Fox, by virtue of price and quality. The Dahon Curve D3 is probably the most common good quality 16" folder available in the US market and costs 1.5 to 2x as much as the Origami bike depending on how much you paid for the Dahon (available for as little as around $540 new) and whether the Origami was at its original price or the more recent "closeout" price.

As to the folding mechanism, the one on the Curve is solid and similar to that used on most Dahon bikes. The folding mechanism on the Origami Fox is flimsy, not well thought out, and works poorly.

The Dahon Curve D3 is a solid, pleasant to ride bike, a description I would not give to the Origami Fox.

So yes, there is a significant price difference, however the Dahon is not that expensive and is a serviceable bike. The fact that the Origami is cheaper does not excuse the fact that it is not very good.

The Yugo was not an expensive car; does the fact that it was cheap excuse the fact that it was a total piece of junk?

Last edited by champignon; 05-25-13 at 10:46 PM.
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Old 05-26-13, 07:49 AM   #24
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The Dahon Curve D3 is a solid, pleasant to ride bike, a description I would not give to the Origami Fox.

So yes, there is a significant price difference, however the Dahon is not that expensive and is a serviceable bike. The fact that the Origami is cheaper does not excuse the fact that it is not very good.

The Yugo was not an expensive car; does the fact that it was cheap excuse the fact that it was a total piece of junk?
Thanks. That is what I was trying to understand from your comments. I've got it now. You have been quite helpful.
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Old 05-26-13, 01:06 PM   #25
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The Fox is not listed for sale on Origami's website anymore.
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