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Old 10-27-13, 07:33 AM   #1
Still Pedaling
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My one and ONLY gripe . . .

. . . and I don't think it has anything to do with my Brompton as it does the small 16" wheels. Most roads where I live are quite smooth running -- not perfect mind you. But we have a lot of newly resurfaced roads that are enough to turn my bike into a bone shaker. It would appear that they didn't roll over the new asphalt layer enough. The stones they add to the mix are sticking up way too high making it a very rough ride. Over the course of time, I'm sure the roadway will smooth out due to the volume of traffic, but what about the bike path? I hope this isn't going to be the trend for road repair. I'm sure that asking the local municipality to please have them roll over the surface a little more will be an exercise in futility. I should probably take my MB over the same surfaces and see if there is indeed a difference in ride, but I honestly feel that the smaller the wheel the rougher the ride. Has anybody else come across this problem where you live? I find this very frustrating to say the least. I guess its all about saving money by cutting corners. Typical!
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Old 10-27-13, 11:47 AM   #2
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Did you get the regular or 'firm' suspension on your Brompton? I'm wondering how big of difference the suspension options make for this type of issue.
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Old 10-27-13, 12:15 PM   #3
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Did you get the regular or 'firm' suspension on your Brompton? I'm wondering how big of difference the suspension options make for this type of issue.
Actually there are no suspension options on the Brommie, at least not to my knowledge. Riding on some of these resurfaced bike lanes is like riding on a gravel road except the stones don't give way which makes for a horrible ride. I not long ago sent an email to the Mesa roads department asking them to firmly roll the roads after laying the asphalt. I'm sure that will will go over well. I just don't think many people are willing to do a good job these days. I remember when they used to lay new roads that would come out almost as smooth as a babies bottom. I'm going to call some of the local bike clubs in the area to see what can be done about it, if any.
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Old 10-27-13, 12:39 PM   #4
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A wider tire at lower pressure could help.
I ride a Tikit and I believe the Greenspeed Scorcher tires, which are 40x349, help a lot in smoothing the ride while still being one of the quickest tires available in the size.

As discussed in this thread, some have had a good experience using the Scorchers on a Brompton, and some saw fiddling with it not fully rewarding.

Good luck,
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Old 10-27-13, 12:45 PM   #5
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Huh. I got no issues like you describe, riding my folder with 18" wheels on rough New England roads.

Oh, wait, my Birdy has f and r suspension. Unlike a Brompton.

Nyah, nyah.
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Old 10-27-13, 04:24 PM   #6
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Actually there are no suspension options on the Brommie, at least not to my knowledge. ...
The Brompton rear suspension block comes in two models - standard and firm. We order all of our bikes with the "firm" block. We usually have standard blocks in stock in case a customer wants/needs one. Just the block should be available from your Brompton dealer for <$20.

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Old 10-27-13, 04:25 PM   #7
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Actually there are no suspension options on the Brommie, at least not to my knowledge.
There are two different rear suspension blocks available;the standard and the firm. The firm ones have 'firm' stamped on them,I'd guess the standard ones would likewise be stamped. Check yours,if you have the firm,swapping it for the standard would help a little.

Biggest issue;which tires do you have,and what pressures are you running them? Found out real quick that my Brommie couldn't be ridden on DC roads with the Kojaks near max psi.
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Old 10-28-13, 07:20 AM   #8
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Biggest issue;which tires do you have,and what pressures are you running them? Found out real quick that my Brommie couldn't be ridden on DC roads with the Kojaks near max psi.
I'm have Schwalbe Marathons on my Brommie, at about 90-95psi. Max I believe is 110. Would tires and pressure adjustment make that much difference?
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Old 10-28-13, 07:22 AM   #9
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The Brompton rear suspension block comes in two models - standard and firm. We order all of our bikes with the "firm" block. We usually have standard blocks in stock in case a customer wants/needs one. Just the block should be available from your Brompton dealer for <$20.

-HANK RYAN-
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I had no idea about the different blocks. Problem with the roads is the amount of vibration the bike goes through. I will check into this with the dealer I bought the bike from.

Edit: I checked my block and its labeled "firm".

Last edited by Still Pedaling; 10-28-13 at 03:13 PM.
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Old 10-28-13, 08:14 AM   #10
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Huh. I got no issues like you describe, riding my folder with 18" wheels on rough New England roads.

Oh, wait, my Birdy has f and r suspension. Unlike a Brompton.

Nyah, nyah.
A suspension set up would be nice. Fortunately there are not a lot of roads messed up this way -- yet. But I do have alternate routes to choose from.

At least I can ride when you're shoveling snow -- Nyah, nyah.
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Old 10-28-13, 08:29 AM   #11
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I'm have Schwalbe Marathons on my Brommie, at about 90-95psi. Max I believe is 110. Would tires and pressure adjustment make that much difference?
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/...Gc&hl=en#gid=0

hey Still Pedalling can you run your info through this doc and then see what optimal pressures you should start at and then tweak it from there. I ended up riding my kojaks around the 70's range. you'd have to include the weight of the bike and bags as well not just yourself. It's a starting point, it doesn't mean you should ride at that point cause it might be too mushy.

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Old 10-28-13, 10:02 AM   #12
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loose 10 lbs and try it .... get a regular bumper ...
and yes I fully agree with you, those municipalities have all the very expencives toys and than they dont use them.... The roads would last so much longer if they only roll them down and make them smooth, dont get me started with potholes where they throw is some cold asphalt mix and think the cars will push it down.... ( they push it out the other side and create a bigger hole of course)

When I complaint locally the workers told me, if they use a compactor it would take double as long to get the roads fixed, and if they really do it right than they would last too long and they would be out of a job !!!! go figure

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Old 10-28-13, 10:11 AM   #13
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I'm have Schwalbe Marathons on my Brommie, at about 90-95psi. Max I believe is 110. Would tires and pressure adjustment make that much difference?
http://support.brompton.com/entries/...r-my-Brompton-

Schwalbe Marathon
Front: 60 to 75 PSI, 85 PSI max.
Rear: 70 to 85 PSI, 85 PSI max.

Tire pressure is not only dependent on weight, but also weight distribution.

Riding on rough pavement without suspension requires that you allow the bike to move under you a bit. Keep your cadence up and shift some of your weight to your legs, allowing your hands and sit bones to float over the bars and saddle.

Last edited by Mr. Thompson; 10-28-13 at 10:15 AM. Reason: fixed link
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Old 10-28-13, 10:35 AM   #14
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When I complaint locally the workers told me, if they use a compactor it would take double as long to get the roads fixed, and if they really do it right than they would last too long and they would be out of a job !!!! go figure

Best Thor
That is a typical attitude with what's going on today. Quality of workmanship does not exist anymore. Its all about getting the job done as cheaply as possible, and never mind if its done properly. This holds especially true with manufacturing (minimum expenditures, maximum profits). Planned obsolescence.

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Old 10-28-13, 10:40 AM   #15
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http://support.brompton.com/entries/...r-my-Brompton-

Schwalbe Marathon
Front: 60 to 75 PSI, 85 PSI max.
Rear: 70 to 85 PSI, 85 PSI max.

Tire pressure is not only dependent on weight, but also weight distribution.

Riding on rough pavement without suspension requires that you allow the bike to move under you a bit. Keep your cadence up and shift some of your weight to your legs, allowing your hands and sit bones to float over the bars and saddle.
Thank you for that. I better re-read the markings on the side of the tire. That link is valuable to say the least. I will be heading out soon for a ride, so getting this info is timely. Man, I don't want to be dealing with blown tires while miles from home. At least I have a number of people I can call to come out and pick me up .
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Old 10-28-13, 11:16 AM   #16
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There is a small manufacturer in California, PanTour**, that make a narrow Hub with Suspension in it.
its only 1/2" of motion, but I read of Brompton Owners investing in them.

the suspension motion angle is adjustable , so the brake pads remain over the rim.

I expect there is some buzz reduction. (dont own one, I went for a dyno-hub instead)


** https://www.google.com/search?q=PanT...q=PanTour+bike

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Old 10-28-13, 11:44 AM   #17
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Pantour is so small that their website is gone .. no great loss based on my experiences with the hub .. there is however
SOMETHING
on the horizon..
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Old 10-28-13, 12:26 PM   #18
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maybe The Pantour company is a Was, rather than an Is.
we shall see if the one you linked to is sorting out only 10 wide fronts.
where the larger non folding bike market is, or the 7.4 wide hubs
that Several folders use as the fork spacing.


I looked at the clip, To My Eye, it's more about shock absorption as a benefit to bearing longevity than any perceptible road harshness reduction as felt by the rider..

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Old 10-28-13, 12:43 PM   #19
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At $3.8K a copy, Gokiso might accommodate you..
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Old 10-28-13, 03:11 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Thompson View Post
http://support.brompton.com/entries/...r-my-Brompton-

Schwalbe Marathon
Front: 60 to 75 PSI, 85 PSI max.
Rear: 70 to 85 PSI, 85 PSI max.

Tire pressure is not only dependent on weight, but also weight distribution.

Riding on rough pavement without suspension requires that you allow the bike to move under you a bit. Keep your cadence up and shift some of your weight to your legs, allowing your hands and sit bones to float over the bars and saddle.
I checked the side of the tire again and it's marked 65-110psi for the Marathon. But I will keep it within the suggested range indicated on the chart.
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Old 10-28-13, 04:01 PM   #21
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I checked the side of the tire again and it's marked 65-110psi for the Marathon. But I will keep it within the suggested range indicated on the chart.
I second Mr. Thompson's suggestion to use the Brompton recommended pressure rather than going by what it says on the tire sidewall. We also ride Schwalbe Marathons. If we are near a place where it is convenient to inflate with a built-in gauge, I air up to 75 front / 85 back (70/80 for the wife), then do it again the next day. If we are on the move, I just fill them all to 85 and check in a week to 10 days.

The Brompton pump isn't bad - I like the way it comes off the tire w/o loosing any pressure - but takes a lot of work to get up to 85 and it has no gauge. I have carried a good dial gauge in the past but don't like the hassle of pumping, checking pressure then maybe pumping some more so I now i do more of a "that should be good enough" squeeze test. Don't really want to buy a compact pump w/ gauge.
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Old 10-28-13, 04:28 PM   #22
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Would tires and pressure adjustment make that much difference?
Yes,reduce your tire pressure and you'll get a much better ride. You could also get the standard suspension block,but when I did my test rides,I didn't like the way it made the bike feel. Play with the tire pressures first,it's free.

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There is a small manufacturer in California, PanTour**, that make a narrow Hub with Suspension in it.
Dude,I finally got rid of the Pantour hub(whole bike actually). Those things sucked. Made brake setup a total PITA. Plus no idea how long you'll be able to get spare elastics.
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Old 10-28-13, 04:59 PM   #23
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I second Mr. Thompson's suggestion to use the Brompton recommended pressure rather than going by what it says on the tire sidewall. We also ride Schwalbe Marathons. If we are near a place where it is convenient to inflate with a built-in gauge, I air up to 75 front / 85 back (70/80 for the wife), then do it again the next day. If we are on the move, I just fill them all to 85 and check in a week to 10 days.

The Brompton pump isn't bad - I like the way it comes off the tire w/o loosing any pressure - but takes a lot of work to get up to 85 and it has no gauge. I have carried a good dial gauge in the past but don't like the hassle of pumping, checking pressure then maybe pumping some more so I now i do more of a "that should be good enough" squeeze test. Don't really want to buy a compact pump w/ gauge.
I have a nice stand up tire pump with gauge, and as a rule I check the pressure every other day (ride). I haven't used the on board pump as yet, but I would imagine it being a bit of a chore to get the tires up to 70+psi. At least its available in a pinch. I will definitely stick to the chart rather than go by what's marked on the tire. Good thing I haven't blown the tires then.

I'm a little leery about using pumps like at a service center for example. The last time I used one of those air pumps I ended up blowing a tube. They fill so fast and if you're not careful like I wasn't -- well its a walk home or a phone call to a friend .
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Old 10-28-13, 05:19 PM   #24
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Yes - I have a quality floor pump w/gauge at home and that is my preferred pump. I've used the Brompton hand pump on the road a bit but prefer not to - only as a last resort, really. Some say to let air out of tires before traveling on a plane but before flying I air all tire to 85 at home, then head to the airport.
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Old 10-28-13, 05:31 PM   #25
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I ride a Moulton F rolling on 1 3/8 Comet Primos (85psi) and a Phillip's 20 custom and stock Raleigh 20 that both roll on 20 inch Marathons (70 - 80 psi)... none of these has any issues on bad roads and for the Moulton it all lies in the front and rear suspension.

It makes no sense for a company to design a suspension hub when the most practical solution to making a small wheel ride like a bigger one got figured out over 50 years ago by Sir Alex Moulton.
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