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  1. #1
    johnliu@earthlink.net jyl's Avatar
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    Folder Closest To My Current Bike?

    I may, unexpectedly, have need of a folder bike. We have a Dahon Boardwalk that hasn't been too impressive, i.e. no-one ever rides it unless we fob it off on a guest. But I know there are plenty of other folders out there.

    My main commute bike is a '80s steel oldie racer, 25mm 700C, 53/39 and 12-26, drop bars below saddle, about 26 lbs w/ full lights, pump, fenders.

    What is the folder that will ride and feel as close to that as possible? But still folds up small enough to bring on a train or bus?

    Just looking around, I'm not seeing a folder with drop bars or a saddle-to-bar drop.
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  2. #2
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Bike Friday Pocket Rocket.. Caprio Cassette is a 9~26t for the higher gears on those thin tired 451 wheels.


    or BTO Tikit.

    PDX and Eugene are on the same River , take your favorite bike down there , Train, Bus or drive your car.

    and they will be able to measure all the relevant dimensions and make it to fit the same.

    where you contact the Bike Bars, saddle and pedals ..
    Last edited by fietsbob; 09-01-13 at 10:34 AM.

  3. #3
    johnliu@earthlink.net jyl's Avatar
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    Wow, I just found this guy's website . . . that's a lot of work/money to spend on a Dahon but the end result is almost exactly what I was envisioning. Though I could skip the Di2 and the gold bling, the front derailler and drop bar conversion look great. I'd use clipless pedals.

    http://handsonbike.blogspot.com/p/da...alk-x20-r.html

    It also seems that this and other dropbar conversions for the Dahons are unnecessarily complicated. Why not simply cut the top off the stock handlepost and have the top of a fork steerer tube welded on, to accept a standard threadless stem. Or, if height and reach adjustment are not necessary, shim the stock handlepost clamp to fit a standard drop bar? I may be missing something here.
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  4. #4
    cpg
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    Mezzo or Ori if you can get them where live. They adapt well to dropbar conversion and the frame design means they ride fairly close to a road bike. See the Mezzo upgrade thread for details of converting to dropbars. http://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...-bike-upgrades
    Mezzo I4 (converted to dual drive), Whyte PRST-1, Trek 1200, Dahon Jack, Bickerton (work in progress)

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    I would also say a Bike Friday would more than meet your needs. They are made in Eugene so you could take a day trip and test ride, see how it is done, check their used bike supply and if you bring your bike with they will be able to take all the measurements to build you one. Roger

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyl View Post
    I may, unexpectedly, have need of a folder bike. We have a Dahon Boardwalk that hasn't been too impressive, i.e. no-one ever rides it unless we fob it off on a guest. But I know there are plenty of other folders out there.

    My main commute bike is a '80s steel oldie racer, 25mm 700C, 53/39 and 12-26, drop bars below saddle, about 26 lbs w/ full lights, pump, fenders.

    What is the folder that will ride and feel as close to that as possible? But still folds up small enough to bring on a train or bus?

    Just looking around, I'm not seeing a folder with drop bars or a saddle-to-bar drop.
    The Airnmal Chameleon would ride 'close as possible'... it would be lighter and more comfortable (due to the rear elastomer) .. would be fine for trains like Amtrak, or touring buses.. a little cumbersome for a day in day out commuter bus as the front wheel is removed for folding..



    Another option is a Pacific Reach Road .. same folding style as the Airnimal but with elastomer front and rear suspension .. this bike would be a fast, comfortable ride.. I own both bikes..



    One reason you don't see too many successful drop bar conversions on long stemmed Dahons is the steerer is so long.. so there is lots of flex... much more leverage with drops than flat bars...

  7. #7
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    Dahon Anniversary Replica(or older Speed Pro TT) or Tern Verge.

    Really understand they're only going to be somewhat similar. You're just not going to get a small framed,small wheeled bike to exactly emulate a regular bike.

    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,Brompton S6L,Dahon Speed Pro TT

  8. #8
    Senior Member bhkyte's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dynaryder View Post
    Dahon Anniversary Replica(or older Speed Pro TT) or Tern Verge.

    Really understand they're only going to be somewhat similar. You're just not going to get a small framed,small wheeled bike to exactly emulate a regular bike.
    But they can replace the role of a fast road bike in my experience, at least for commuting.
    Sold one 653 renuelds tubed road race bike, replaced with downtube with low profile bars and ultergra kit. Total cost less than 400 with used parts.
    More compact Mezzo replaced downtube due to storage limitations. Upgraded mezzo slower , but not by much.
    Dahon Speed tt is nice bike also look at terns in 20" wheel, else carbonfibre ori supra ?!?!

    Problem with some dropped bars is getting road sti to work with v brakes. I found this ok on the downtube if v brakes set to very tight clearence and soft pads fitted. Wrists are stronger in a vertical postion anyway, so drops improve braking ability.
    Last edited by bhkyte; 08-03-13 at 03:09 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.

  9. #9
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bhkyte View Post
    But they can replace the role of a fast road bike in my experience, at least for commuting.
    Sure,but the OP wants to replicate the feel of his current bike:
    Quote Originally Posted by jyl View Post
    What is the folder that will ride and feel as close to that as possible?
    That won't be easy.

    Quote Originally Posted by bhkyte View Post
    Problem with some dropped bars is getting road sti to work with v brakes. I found this ok on the downtube if v brakes set to very tight clearence and soft pads fitted.
    STI's with V's require these:
    http://problemsolversbike.com/products/travel_agents

    Anything else is pure kludge. Used these on my old cross bike when I converted from canti's to V's,my Speed Pro TT came with them stock,and my friend's wife has a Terry that came with them stock. They're really the best solution. It's one thing to cob something together to get a bike to shift gears,but brakes really need to be done properly.

    Quote Originally Posted by bhkyte View Post
    Wrists are stronger in a vertical postion anyway, so drops improve braking ability.
    Don't know that I'd agree with that. There are many factors to braking performance. Never noticed a dif between my dropbar and flatbar bikes that didn't have to do with the brakes themselves and the tires I was running. You'll certainly never get a dropbar bike running 23's to stop as well as a flatbar bike running 2inchers.

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  10. #10
    lowlife bottom feeder BassNotBass's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bhkyte View Post
    But they can replace the role of a fast road bike in my experience, at least for commuting.
    For the most part this may be true. IMHO, which is limited but includes a Bike Friday NWT, the more "race" oriented bike, the Pocket Rocket from Bike Friday, may be worth it (for jyl) to look into. It's been raced by Rob English and even for the more experience club racer is a good small wheeled alternative to larger wheeled road bikes. I have read that there are several triathletes riding Bike Fridays, Birdys and Moultons so the latter two are also a consideration although the Birdie may have the more graceful fold of all three.

    Yesterday I finally met another cyclist on my commute home. He was commuting from work (although far more "hardcore" looking than I and was probably an avid roadie, although his legs weren't shaved ) but we had a good spirited ride getting through the city just chatting it up and I thought that my BF NWT kept it's own pretty well. He was obviously a stronger rider than I but this was definitely one of my more memorable commutes... wish there more like this.

    Here's the last 1.5 min clip of the ride.
    I plan on living forever... so far so good.

  11. #11
    johnliu@earthlink.net jyl's Avatar
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    Looks like a fun ride!

    Hmm, I wonder how "different" the bikes would feel.

    Can you guys do this thought experiment for me. Suppose you were placed on a bike, and were blindfolded. How would you know if you were on a conventional road bike such as mine, or were on a folder with drop bars? Let's overlook the question of how you are managing to ride while blindfolded . . .
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  12. #12
    lowlife bottom feeder BassNotBass's Avatar
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    IMHO the difference would be the reaction to steering input, my BF being more responsive.To me the difference between my Bike Friday and my road bike is the same as between my Flying Pigeon and my road bike (aside from the weight). The Bike Friday is stable whether at slow or fast speeds (and quick to accelerate and maintain speed) but it's steering is "livlier". Some people may call it "twitchy" but then compared to my Flying Pigeon the road bike could then also be considered twitchy.

    As far as the ride quality of my BF compared to my road bike (an 80's Nishiki Olympic 12... 4130 chromoly) I don't think there's much of a difference since my Nishiki is riding on Conti Gators (700X23) at 120 psi f/r vs Schwalbe Marathons (20"x 1.5") at 65psi front and 85psi rear. Mind you, this is my BF and if you consider that the frame it has a "spindly" (or more "compliant" [marketing speak if it's considered an advantage]) rear triangle, just one main chromoly frame tube and a longer wheel base (41.5" for the BF and 40" for the Nishiki) so that may contribute to its "plush" ride considering it has smaller wheels.
    I plan on living forever... so far so good.

  13. #13
    Senior Member bhkyte's Avatar
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    "Don't know that I'd agree with that. There are many factors to braking performance. Never noticed a dif between my dropbar and flatbar bikes that didn't have to do with the brakes themselves. .........

    Drop bar braking postion does allow the user to squeeze harder.
    My point is that drops allow a stronger pull. The wrist are stronger anatomally in the neutral postion rather than in the flat postions where several muscles are maintaing the postion and can not contribute to squeezing tha brakes
    Don't have evidence to prove this translates in to pratice, other than if you get a grip tester the best results are achived in a vertical postion.
    I could get anorak about which muscle groups are in better mechinical postion, but I fancy another coffee!
    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.

  14. #14
    Senior Member bhkyte's Avatar
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    Forgot about travel agents with v brakes. I got mine working without using them but not ideal.
    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.

  15. #15
    PatronSaintOfDiscBrakes dynaryder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bhkyte View Post
    The wrist are stronger anatomally in the neutral postion rather than in the flat postions where several muscles are maintaing the postion and can not contribute to squeezing tha brakes
    Don't have evidence to prove this translates in to pratice, other than if you get a grip tester the best results are achived in a vertical postion
    Quality brakes properly set up should only need two fingers. If you need to use your whole hand,your brakes need adjusting or upgrading.

    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,Brompton S6L,Dahon Speed Pro TT

  16. #16
    johnliu@earthlink.net jyl's Avatar
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    Update - I have been commuting on my steel racer and on my Dahon Boardwalk, on alternating days.

    I tuned the Dahon, installed a proper saddle and clipless pedals, and pumped the tires up hard.

    So far, the most obvious difference is the upright position and squishy handlepost of the Dahon. Lots of wind resistance, and when accelerating the flex in the handlepost is obvious. I think I can address that with a shorter handlepost.

    The next difference is not enough stretch-out room on the Dahon. I think I will stick some bullhorns in the shorter handlepost. It would be nice to find a seatpost with some offset.

    The final difference is not a big enough gear in the Dahon. Where I'm 53x12 on the racer, in the folder I'm . . . nowhere. Mulling over doing a front derailleur mod to the Dahon. This really is a problem.

    The small wheels are not feeling as odd as I thought they would. I am enjoying the ride, actually.
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  17. #17
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    If simple top seatpost, ie 22.2 tube top .. there is the Brompton SAP to mount on the post and the saddle clip on it.

  18. #18
    cpg
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    Have a look at getting some dropbar ends, I have origin 8 bar ends on my Mezzo. An extended adjustable stem such as the Satori, there are other similar stems and Deal Extreme do a cheap one, would help with reach. For gearing, I can recommend the Sram dual drive hub but that depend on the rear drop-out spacing of your bike.
    Mezzo I4 (converted to dual drive), Whyte PRST-1, Trek 1200, Dahon Jack, Bickerton (work in progress)

  19. #19
    Conquer Cancer rider Boudicca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyl View Post
    Looks like a fun ride!

    Hmm, I wonder how "different" the bikes would feel.

    Can you guys do this thought experiment for me. Suppose you were placed on a bike, and were blindfolded. How would you know if you were on a conventional road bike such as mine, or were on a folder with drop bars? Let's overlook the question of how you are managing to ride while blindfolded . . .
    I can honestly say that my Pocket Rocket rides like my road bikes, although it's a little more jittery on a bumpy paved road. But I'd take the Friday over the road bikes on packed gravel.
    Zero gallons to the mile

  20. #20
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jyl View Post
    Update - I have been commuting on my steel racer and on my Dahon Boardwalk, on alternating days.

    I tuned the Dahon, installed a proper saddle and clipless pedals, and pumped the tires up hard.

    So far, the most obvious difference is the upright position and squishy handlepost of the Dahon. Lots of wind resistance, and when accelerating the flex in the handlepost is obvious. I think I can address that with a shorter handlepost.

    The next difference is not enough stretch-out room on the Dahon. I think I will stick some bullhorns in the shorter handlepost. It would be nice to find a seatpost with some offset.

    The final difference is not a big enough gear in the Dahon. Where I'm 53x12 on the racer, in the folder I'm . . . nowhere. Mulling over doing a front derailleur mod to the Dahon. This really is a problem.

    The small wheels are not feeling as odd as I thought they would. I am enjoying the ride, actually.
    I'll be very interested to hear (and *cough cough* see) how your folder evolves. As you're discovering, there are a lot of tweaks you can do to make your folder fit you (almost) as well as your road bike.

    Again, don't forget the pictures.
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  21. #21
    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    See.. you got a One size Bike .. now you have to adapt it with various fixes , .. but it is a lower cost starter..

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