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  1. #1
    Member thomasw333's Avatar
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    Just bought my second folder, An Origami Crane.

    Just bought an Origami Crane today. I hope it gets here quickly.
    I first bought a Citizen Gotham 2, a few years ago. It is ok, but a little heavy. And I hate how the handlebar folds to the outside, not inside the tires. Also the front end, the handle bar feels a little more sloppy than I would like.

    So I am hoping the Crane feels more solid. Also it weighs a little less, and the handle bar folds down in-between the wheels which makes so much more sense.

    I was looking between the obvious affordable folders,
    the Citizen Miami was out do to bad fold design and high weight and being steel I worry about rust.

    The fbike was out do to weight, but it has the sensible fold, but also steel rusts. But honestly the fbike I think has the best look, very square straight lines.

    Looked at the Boardwalk Nova, but read some bad things about parts availability, and the website looked odd. It is Aluminum, and low weight, but the Crane is the same basic weight and materials, and comes with extras.

    Then there is the Crane, the Owner of the Company is on the forum, and active which is nice. I have seen how the company responses to customers in a positive way. The bike itself is super low weight for the price, has fenders, and a rack. The owner of the company talks about how strong the hinges are which makes consumers feel good.
    So it seemed like the best buy, and I ordered one today.

    As a customer though, I feel that The Origami Bicycle Company could do a few things to improve.
    First their website is not very good. They could use some better colors, and some better pictures. I know they have some professional pictures on their website, but they are boring, where are the shots of fun happy people outside.

    I had to make a PayPal account to buy the bike. That might turn some people off, but I have been planning to make a PayPal account for awhile for use in the various forums I use.

    The company gets back to you quickly, but the messages could use some sales/marketing polish.
    I felt like the responses I got were forced, like the person sending them was not happy to have to be a salesman, and was not happy to answer questions. Don't get me wrong, they will answer your questions, but the whole tone of the conversation feels very defensive.

    Anyway, I will post my "review" of the bike when I get it.
    I am also excited to be on a new forum and hopefully can gain some good knowledge from experienced riders.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by thomasw333 View Post
    Just bought an Origami Crane today.
    Welcome to the fold!

    I had a very similar experience as yours and agree that some folding websites (Origami especially) could really use some polish. It's hard for me to be subjective about website design/website shopping carts since that's what I do at work. Totally agree with you about getting some action shots of customers ON the bikes too.

    I purchased the Cricket model but wonder if I should have started out with the Crane. I LOVE my folder and it's got nearly 100 miles on it already. Folders make cycling much easier and it's so fun too.

    Looking forward to your review!

  3. #3
    Member thomasw333's Avatar
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    I went for the crane because I have never used a front suspension on a bike that I liked. I have ridden all kinds of bikes, and owned ~200-~600$ bikes with front suspensions, never happy with them. Now the $600 bike was very nice and the front suspension was pretty good, but not as great as no suspension. I think a good rear suspension is ok though, but again I like none. I think the Cricket has the best design for a rear suspension, it is an air shock, not a spring, it is probably very fun to ride in that regard, but I feel like you are wasting forward momentum with suspensions. Anyway just a personal preference, I am not against anyone using any kind of suspension, in fact I saw a bike on YouTube with this weird double fork suspension, and they said it was made to not decrease breaking performance, because the bike did not dip down when braking looked really cool.
    Last edited by thomasw333; 10-01-13 at 05:37 PM. Reason: Bad spelling.

  4. #4
    Member 87gerG's Avatar
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    Just got my Cricket yesterday!! It's my first folder. The fit and finish is very nice. I've only had time to put 2.5 miles on it and it rides really nice even though I'm at 230 lbs (took 26 months off cycling and gained back the 32 lbs I've lost).

    I agree with you about the website. On having to create a paypal account you shouldn't have had to. I use Paypal for my business as well and during checkout there is a small section at the bottom for people that don't have Paypal. Paypal makes it appear as though you have to have Paypal so most people will just sign up. See red circled area in pic.paypal checkout.JPG
    Greg

  5. #5
    Member 87gerG's Avatar
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    Out of the box the only adjustment I've had to make was to the front brake. IMO the pedals are the weakest part of the bike, those will be getting replaced probably with some Wellgo BMX pedals in orange to match the paint. I don't need the pedals to fold.

    So far I've added a handlebar mount for my Samsung Galaxy Note II, water bottle cage, Mirrycle mirror and an Avenir bag under the seat.
    Greg

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    i thought that about the pedals too...... by i have not had issues yet and now i don't think about it at all. They are pretty strong

  7. #7
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    Honestly, I haven't ridden a bike before my Cricket in YEARS. I feel the suspension the most going up over hills (like the freeway overpass). It's not bad, just... smooshy and I do feel like it looses some momentum especially on hills. What sold me were disc breaks (Oregon -so muddy and wet) and the bit of research I did said good things about disc breaks in this environment. Hind sight being 20/20 I think I would have chosen the Crane since I'm not a 'hardcore' user and sometimes simple is better.

  8. #8
    Member thomasw333's Avatar
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    @cinnamon: I did not even see that the Cricket has Disk Brakes. That is a great feature, I have used a MTB bike with Disk Brakes and they are phenomenal. That is def a big plus for that bike. Honestly if I had a Cricket I would look into getting a regular front fork, and you would have a really great bike. Like I said the back suspension looks good and probably has a nice ride.
    @87gerG: If the pedals are the same, or better than on the Citizen I have I will be fine. Speaking of colors, really wanted a green bike, followed by blue, then black, then grey (like the Vitesse). Not too thrilled with the Orange color, but that is all they had at the time, yellow is worse than orange for me. Hopefully is it like a Burnt Orange, and not a Halloween Orange. Also I tried to use PayPal as a guest, but it would not accept my credit card, no idea why. So I made an account. But like I said it is fine, Everyone on forums uses PayPal, and I use a Honda Forum, Photography forum, computer forum, and now a bike forum. PayPal is a must to get things form regular people these days.

    It seems stupid but I really wanted a Green bike, love green. My current car is green and I plan on always getting a green car if possible.

    For those all who have the bike, how long did it take for you to get it. I ordered mine around noon today, I figure they only ship out bikes once a day, in the morning when the Fedex truck comes. Hopefully I will have a tracking number tomorrow.

  9. #9
    Member 87gerG's Avatar
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    I got mine in 4 business days.
    Greg

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by thomasw333 View Post
    For those all who have the bike, how long did it take for you to get it. I ordered mine around noon today, I figure they only ship out bikes once a day, in the morning when the Fedex truck comes. Hopefully I will have a tracking number tomorrow.

    I got my bike about 8 days after my payment but there were shipping issues through Colorado at the time of my order so I think it took longer than normal. Paul from Origami gave me a 5 day estimate. Oh, and I would have LOVED a green version.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cinnamon View Post
    I got my bike about 8 days after my payment but there were shipping issues through Colorado at the time of my order so I think it took longer than normal. Paul from Origami gave me a 5 day estimate. Oh, and I would have LOVED a green version.
    You are correct, it will ship in the morning and should arrive on Thursday. Shipping to the east coast is always pretty quick.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    OK, I think that concensus is that our website needs work. I agree. Now, I just need to find the time, money, and a better-looking spokesmodel than myself...anyone know a cutie that works cheap?

  13. #13
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    OK, I think that concensus is that our website needs work. I agree. Now, I just need to find the time, money, and a better-looking spokesmodel than myself...anyone know a cutie that works cheap?
    Maybe it's a marketing opportunity:

    "Our website looks like (fill_in_the_blank) because we've decided not to raise the prices of the bikes to fix it!"
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  14. #14
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cplager View Post
    Maybe it's a marketing opportunity:

    "Our website looks like (fill_in_the_blank) because we've decided not to raise the prices of the bikes to fix it!"
    Funny and true!

  15. #15
    Senior Member smallwheeler's Avatar
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    i can't be sure, but i imagine you're trying to do all of this yourself, so take it as constructive criticism.

    even if you are completely broke because you've poured all of your money back into developing your product, there is really no good excuse for photographing your bikes in front of a wrinkled bed sheet in a dimly lit room (did you know if you spritz a little water on wrinkled fabric the creases will magically disappear?). that, more than anything else, makes you and your website and your products look unprofessional. it's advertising 101. if you don't appear to respect or appreciate your own products then why would anyone else?

  16. #16
    Member thomasw333's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    OK, I think that concensus is that our website needs work. I agree. Now, I just need to find the time, money, and a better-looking spokesmodel than myself...anyone know a cutie that works cheap?
    Look to your family, you can hold the camera, and have your wife, cousin, daughter, some female relative do the videos. And check YouTube, Nycewheels has a lot of good videos, and they take place in the shop, so we see that they have bikes and parts in stock it looks good, or they do there videos outside, outside means light. Light makes videos better, I am into photography also, and a camera sensor is a tool for gathering light, so the best way to get good light is to use the sun. And these days, a ~$250 dollar (even less check open box items at Best Buy) camcorder can do HD and make videos look great. If you have a Macbook pro or know someone who does, the software suite on Macs works very well for the simple videos you need to do.

    I think if you had more videos, on your website/FaceBook/YouTube (obviously you host them all through YouTube), showing the bikes, in action, being ridden, being folded, by a few different people, it would make your customers more engaged. Show a video, how your hinges are better, how you designed them, do you have patents? SO many questions you could answer with videos. Do you use double walled rims? What brand? What brakes/tubes/tires/levers etc...

    We do not know how many people you have working for you, but surely you have a few, even if its family. Use them to put a human face on your company.

    Great example, Apple Iphone: Picture of human hand using device.
    Samsung Galaxy S3: Picture of phone with tag line, "Designed for Humans."

    Both great companies, but which one was just named most valualbe brand in the world, beating Coke, it was Apple. And I don't even like Apple. Or have a Macbook, but my GF does, and in the summer she does some video editing for a local kiosk she works at, so I know what iwhatever it is called, can do. I only do stills photography, so I just use the Olympus software that came with my Olympus PEN camera.
    Last edited by thomasw333; 10-02-13 at 01:08 PM.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by smallwheeler View Post
    i can't be sure, but i imagine you're trying to do all of this yourself, so take it as constructive criticism.

    even if you are completely broke because you've poured all of your money back into developing your product, there is really no good excuse for photographing your bikes in front of a wrinkled bed sheet in a dimly lit room (did you know if you spritz a little water on wrinkled fabric the creases will magically disappear?). that, more than anything else, makes you and your website and your products look unprofessional. it's advertising 101. if you don't appear to respect or appreciate your own products then why would anyone else?
    You make a great point. I do appreciate the feedback and I will make new videos and have more photos taken. It really is just my family working on this, so it has been a challenge, but we can do better.

  18. #18
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thomasw333 View Post
    Look to your family, you can hold the camera, and have your wife, cousin, daughter, some female relative do the videos.
    Don't forget sons, brothers, male cousins, nephews, too.

    There's really no need to try to sell folding bikes the way car calendars are sold. I'm all for seeing more faces, but I can see this going badly...
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  19. #19
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cplager View Post
    Don't forget sons, brothers, male cousins, nephews, too.

    There's really no need to try to sell folding bikes the way car calendars are sold. I'm all for seeing more faces, but I can see this going badly...
    These are my nephews. I would like to know from the ladies if they would be acceptable

    Shawn and Chris.jpg

  20. #20
    Senior Member smallwheeler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    You make a great point. I do appreciate the feedback and I will make new videos and have more photos taken. It really is just my family working on this, so it has been a challenge, but we can do better.
    have someone check around local photo studios. rates are usually more reasonable than you would expect, particularly if you come to them and they dont have to travel with lights and gear. use an image as an example of what you want. get a quote for three shots each bike (folded, unfolded, side, 3/4) with minimal photoshop clean up. something like this:


  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    These are my nephews. I would like to know from the ladies if they would be acceptable
    Ok, now you're just taunting us. My husband might have looked like that 20 years ago when we were married.

    I agree though that I would have liked to see videos similar to the ones done by nycewheels. There are lots of videos on youtube that could give you some inspiration. You wouldn't even need to talk, just show yourself or your... nephews (hehe) popping the bike out of the back of a car in a park and riding around. Maybe show some close ups of the fold too. Then set a music track on top of it. There are even youtube videos that will tell you how to take better pictures, make the videos, and what software will help you with these things.

    Paul, I'll also PM you some information about my company (ecommerce software) and maybe help you out with some pointers about your website/shopping cart. I'll see if I can do a youtube video this weekend, if it's sunny. Oh, that reminds me - I wasn't able to do a review on my Cricket since your software didn't recognize my email address. I do really like it btw. I've already lost an inch all over since starting cycling.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cinnamon View Post
    Ok, now you're just taunting us. My husband might have looked like that 20 years ago when we were married.

    I agree though that I would have liked to see videos similar to the ones done by nycewheels. There are lots of videos on youtube that could give you some inspiration. You wouldn't even need to talk, just show yourself or your... nephews (hehe) popping the bike out of the back of a car in a park and riding around. Maybe show some close ups of the fold too. Then set a music track on top of it. There are even youtube videos that will tell you how to take better pictures, make the videos, and what software will help you with these things.

    Paul, I'll also PM you some information about my company (ecommerce software) and maybe help you out with some pointers about your website/shopping cart. I'll see if I can do a youtube video this weekend, if it's sunny. Oh, that reminds me - I wasn't able to do a review on my Cricket since your software didn't recognize my email address. I do really like it btw. I've already lost an inch all over since starting cycling.
    Thanks for the feedback, and congratulations on the weight loss! I have about 10 pounds of pregnancy weight to loose (yeah, over ate while my wife was pregnant).

  23. #23
    The Recumbent Quant cplager's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinigis View Post
    (yeah, over ate while my wife was pregnant).
    It's pretty common. I have a business idea I haven't gotten around to starting: Paternity pants.
    http://Charles.Plager.net
    http://RecumbentQuant.blogspot.com

  24. #24
    Senior Member Pinigis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cplager View Post
    It's pretty common. I have a business idea I haven't gotten around to starting: Paternity pants.
    That is BRILLIANT!!!

  25. #25
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    Would they come with earplugs and a beer holster?

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