Thread: Swift folders
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Old 09-01-05, 02:31 PM
  #15  
james_swift
All ur bike r belong Enki
 
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So how much of a better ride is my Xootr Swift compared to my Dahon Vitesse D5?

One-way commute distance: 4 miles

(Averages calculated from 3 rides on each bike.)
Average speed:
1.) Swift: 17.98 mph
2.) Dahon: 14.65 mph

I've noticed that on a long flat section of my commute I am easily able to maintain 21mph with my Swift, whereas on the Dahon, I was struggling to keep 17mph. The real proof-in-the-pudding, however, is being able to keep-up with and sometimes even pass the usual roadies on Treks and Specializeds who used to leave me behind on my Dahon.

I actually was a hard-core roadie for 7 years, until I got hit by a car. The leg that took the brunt of the impact just never performed the same after the accident for me to sustain the fast-riding and the weekend century rides. My return to biking was more out of commute necessity than anything else. Having that roadie instinct still in me, I was not content tooting along on my Dahon at 16mph. That is why the Swift is so perfect for me:

1.) 72 deg seat tube angle
This is the same seat-tube angle as on my old Centurion road bike (R.I.P.). I'm able to get the perfect fore-aft position on my Swift for my personal riding style. The Swift really does feel like a road bike with BMX wheels.

2.) Adjustable stem height and length
The Swift uses the standard threadless Ahead-style stem. Getting the amount of stretch on the bike that I wanted was as easy as going out and buying a longer stem. No funky Syntace VRO extension adapter needed. Stem height is fully adjustable and is only a matter of loosening the stem and sliding it down the stem tube. You can even cut-down the stem tube with a hacksaw if you don't like that extra length of tube protruding above the stem in the lower positions.

3.) At 22lbs, the Swift is 2.4 lbs lighter than my Dahon. Xoootr says that the tires and tubes were spec'ed on the heavy side to make them bulllet-proof. They claim that by replacing their "generous" saddle with a racing sadlle, and changing-out the heavy tires and tubes with lighter ones, the Swift can be a sub-20lb ride. The original steel-framed swift was a hefty 29 lbs.

The Swift folds-up slightly faster than my Dahon, due mostly to the actual folding action. With the Swift, you merely undo 2 quick-release levers along the seat tube, then just swing the rear wheel under the top tube. The stem tube is also quick-release, similar in design to what Bike Friday uses. My Swift fits neatly into the same storage area on the train that I used to store my Dahon.

I'm very pleased with my Swift and highly recommend it to anyone stuck between deciding whether to buy a Bike Friday or Dahon.
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