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Been riding 40+ years - Just got a Brompton 12-speed

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Been riding 40+ years - Just got a Brompton 12-speed

Old 06-01-24, 07:04 PM
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Been riding 40+ years - Just got a Brompton 12-speed

Hi - Just joined this forum.

I've been riding most every day for about 40 years now (not counting my teenage years). I turn 70 later this year. I keep rough track of the miles. Roughly, it's around 170,000 miles so far. Another way to say it is more than six times around the equator. The moon is around 220,000. I don't know if I will get to that number or not - but I am not going to quit trying!

A few days ago i ordered a Brompton 12-speed. Got it two days ago, and I have ridden it about 30 miles in the last two days. I really like it! I was afraid I would not like the "trigger shifters" but I was wrong. Paddle shifters tend to make my wrists ache, but the Brompton trigger shifters are feather light and need very little travel distance, so no problem there.

I like the 12-speed's low gears - good for steeper hills.

I will still use my Specialized (with grip shifters) each morning to keep fit, and then for fun rides it will be the Brompton.

Keep on riding!
Steve Capps - USA.
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Old 06-01-24, 08:07 PM
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Great effort! What attracted you to buying a Brompton? Did you specifically need a folding bike or just liked the style?

Welcome to the forum too!
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Old 06-01-24, 08:45 PM
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Welcome [MENTION=578861]SteveCapps[/MENTION]. .
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Old 06-01-24, 08:59 PM
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I wanted a compact folding bike so that I could just toss it into the trunk/boot of the car without having to use a bike carrier on the back of the car. I don't want to have a bike carrier on the back most all the time. And, I want to go on rides early in the morning, even if my wife is not yet up and about (we can go on together rides later in the day). The Brompton 12-speed seemed to check off all the main points of what I wanted. Also, the Brompton bikes seemed to get the number 1 ratings on most reviews I looked at.

Maybe I can convince my wife to join me in riding a Brompton - and then we can ditch the bike carrier on the back of the car forever. But, it's too early to tell if that will happen. She has only ridden it for about 5 minutes. (Remember, I have only had it for two days.)

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Old 06-01-24, 09:10 PM
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That's affirmative.

Here's what I have ordered to add to it - the advanced rear bike rack, a bottle holder, a bag that fits on the front, a kick-stand.

And, most importantly of all - a padded seat cover with memory foam, etc. My rear doesn't like the hard seat/saddle. I have to stand up while riding every few minutes and let the blood flow so my sitter doesn't get sore. I hope the padded seat cover helps!

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Old 06-02-24, 04:16 AM
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Originally Posted by SteveCapps
I wanted a compact folding bike so that I could just toss it into the trunk/boot of the car without having to use a bike carrier on the back of the car. I don't want to have a bike carrier on the back most all the time. And, I want to go on rides early in the morning, even if my wife is not yet up and about (we can go on together rides later in the day). The Brompton 12-speed seemed to check off all the main points of what I wanted. Also, the Brompton bikes seemed to get the number 1 ratings on most reviews I looked at.

Maybe I can convince my wife to join me in riding a Brompton - and then we can ditch the bike carrier on the back of the car forever. But, it's too early to tell if that will happen. She has only ridden it for about 5 minutes. (Remember, I have only had it for two days.)

Steve Capps
That makes sense so I hope it works out for you. I see a few Bromptons on our local roads. They do look fun to ride.
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Old 06-02-24, 06:35 PM
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Wishing I had a High Tech New Brompton but sadly only ride a 1982 DAHON 20" all steel with Shimano SIS that my neighbor bought new and just gave me. A few weeks ago able to hit 29.2mph with the 60 tooth chainring and pair of 100psi 20x1.75 tires a friend gave me.

Enjoy the Brompton.
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Old 06-02-24, 06:49 PM
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I just got a Dahon Impulse used for $100 in great shape, only issue is a bit of rust on the bolt heads with new Kenda 100 psi tires. (still had the rubber nubbies in the tread). I have a workman steel folder that I can carry in my Rav4 Truckett but I would like to have a bicycle all the time because bike path opportunities seam to present themselves all the time and the workman is a little to big (folded) and a bit too heavy (steel) such that I only use it to get from where I park to my office. Pretty much set up for work with computer frendly bags, etc. plus the workman was only $50.00 which means I am not out much if it gets stolen.

I do not think that I have ever seen a Brompton in the wild, i hear that they are awesome.

One thing that I was surprised with is how squirrely the Dahon is with the short wheelbase and little trail in the forks. I wonder if the Brompton handles better with the shorter wheelbase.

Regards,
Crankster
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Old 06-11-24, 02:56 AM
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Congratulations, on the new Brompton. Enjoy your new bike and post some photos?
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Old 06-11-24, 10:48 AM
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Ride report?


edit: I'm a 40 year adult rider - and seriously thinking about a folder instead of a few vintage classics. Considering what I'm sacrificing that folder has to be a decent rider. I think of folders as strictly short distance utility bikes and would like to hear about the top of the lot.
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Old 06-11-24, 05:40 PM
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Originally Posted by crankythunder
I just got a Dahon Impulse used for $100 in great shape, only issue is a bit of rust on the bolt heads with new Kenda 100 psi tires. (still had the rubber nubbies in the tread). I have a workman steel folder that I can carry in my Rav4 Truckett but I would like to have a bicycle all the time because bike path opportunities seam to present themselves all the time and the workman is a little to big (folded) and a bit too heavy (steel) such that I only use it to get from where I park to my office. Pretty much set up for work with computer frendly bags, etc. plus the workman was only $50.00 which means I am not out much if it gets stolen.

I do not think that I have ever seen a Brompton in the wild, i hear that they are awesome.

One thing that I was surprised with is how squirrely the Dahon is with the short wheelbase and little trail in the forks. I wonder if the Brompton handles better with the shorter wheelbase.

Regards,
Crankster
Dahon/Brompton comparison --

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Old 06-11-24, 06:01 PM
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I’ve been riding just as long, and have had a couple of Bromptons along the way. When my last one was stolen, I got a different bike. I had moved to a new neighborhood in a more hilly area, and I had trouble getting my 3 speed Brompton up the steeper hills. I loved the bike otherwise, I could take on the train or subway, keep it under my desk at work, and use it for running errands.

Some months ago I bought a Japanese Brompton clone with an “external” 5 speed driveline. The bike has a titanium fork and rear triangle, and, with pedals, weighs 9kg. Like my old 3 speed Brompton, I find it convenient around town. But the 5 speed driveline and the much lighter weight allow me to get up the hills in my neighborhood.

For longer rides I use my Moulton or my gravel bike, and these see about 200 miles per week now. But the Brompton is a great commuter, and, with a basket on the front, I can easily take my dog to the dog park, which is about 3 miles away.

But here in Japan, a lot of people do some serious miles on Brompton bikes, and I see a surprising number of them on the Arakawa and other longer trails. There is a Brompton cult in Japan, and there are numerous books, YouTube videos, and other media describing their Brompton adventures.
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Old 06-16-24, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Wildwood
Ride report?


edit: I'm a 40 year adult rider - and seriously thinking about a folder instead of a few vintage classics. Considering what I'm sacrificing that folder has to be a decent rider. I think of folders as strictly short distance utility bikes and would like to hear about the top of the lot.
Bike Friday is a good choice as well. Not as cool perhaps as the Brompton but parts are easier to come by for the Bike Friday as most of the parts are standard. I like my Bike Friday New World Tourist, good gearing and good tires for most any surface.

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Old 06-28-24, 04:39 PM
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New Brompton Rider

Hi - sorry for the late reply. Been busy with kitchen rebuild, etc.

I would love to post photos of the rides with the Brompton! I tried to but the forum says I have to do at least 10 posts first, and then after that I can include photos.

Anywho, I have been riding the Brompton P-Line 12-speed about 100 hours per week, sometimes 1 or 2 or 3 or 4 hour rides. Average speed around 10 miles per hour, top speed usually 22 mph, absolute top was 29,9 miles per hour once.

As soon as possible I will attach photos and tell you how I have tricked out the bike.

The Brompton seems very well engineered, it's a pleasure to ride, and I really like it - no complaints!

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Old 06-28-24, 04:40 PM
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oops

Oops - 100 miles per week, not 100 hours per week!
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Old 06-28-24, 07:04 PM
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And now I have nine posts - just need one more and then I can post photos!
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Old 06-28-24, 07:08 PM
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Ten posts, did someone out there ask? Yes, this is my tenth post! Now I should be able to post photos. Thanks to all those who asked - or did not ask - how many posts I currently have.

So the next one should include photos!
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Old 06-28-24, 08:01 PM
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69 (and a half) years old, still riding, here's my new Brompton

Fantastic! I now have 10 posts so I can share some photos with everyone. Here's my brand spanking new Brompton P-Line 12-speed.
It's electric, but I don't use the battery, except for the occasional fun ride when it is so hot I would never even think about riding at all.

Here's the Brompton ready to ride. The top of the seat is four inches below the top of my hip bone when I stand beside it.


First Fold - swing the rear wheel underneath the seat next to the front wheel.


Second Fold - Swing the front wheels and handlebars in an unusual (but easy to learn) manoeuvre locking the the front wheel to the under-seat bike frame.

Third Fold - lower the handlebars just a bit, and then let them drop. They snap into place next to the wheels. Then lower the seat and everything locks into place, it is now knee high. Put it in a suitcase or just toss it into the boot of your auto and off you go to find a trail to ride! No bike rack needed - or wanted!


Here are photos from Knoxville TN USA riding through West Hills Park. Sunrise.

And again. I love riding in the mornings, seeing the beautiful sunrises.

Here is a church I have never seen before. It is AWESOME. Impressive.
Without the new Brompton to ride in places I had never been before - well, I don't think I would have ever seen it.

I rode to Lakeshore Park in Knoxville TN. In the 1960's and 1970's this used to be a psychiatric hospital. Here's what it looks like now. It's kind of gloomy, I think. The hospital had many, many acres of land for patients to walk around in, with gardens and trees and much more. My uncle - way back then - used to be the Chief Administrator for the hospital. When it closed, many years ago, it was turned into a park. Now it is a lovely place for walkers and bicyclers to ride. This is the first time I have been there since perhaps 1972.

Here's a giant "bowl" they have fashioned into the earth - larger than a football field. You can ride around the rim at the edge of the bowl. This picture is from the south end of the bowl


A lovely chapel at the Lakeshore Park.

So, this is my first post with photos to this forum. I hope you enjoyed them. If some are too small, or too large, well I will learn what is a good size to post in just a few minutes - when I look at this post to see what it looks like!

Enjoy riding, everyone - I certainly do!

Last edited by SteveCapps; 06-30-24 at 11:59 AM.
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Old 06-28-24, 08:25 PM
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Originally Posted by SteveCapps
...........................


.......................................

Here's a giant "bowl" they have fashioned into the earth - larger than a football field. You can ride around the rim at the edge of the bowl. This picture is from the south end of the bowl
................................................................................
Enjoy riding, everyone - I certainly do!


Seat clamp in reverse sure looks funny.

Like *the bowl*

Enjoy your ride and nice photos.
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Old 06-28-24, 09:03 PM
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Lovely photos! Thanks for sharing! FYI, there is also a Folding Bike section here where other folding bike enthusiasts hang about.
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Old 06-29-24, 04:05 AM
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Smoky Mountains - Cades Cove and Townsend - Tennessee

(This time I will use smaller photos and see how those turn out.)

Cades Cove is a beautiful 11-mile road in the Smoky Mountains in Tennessee.
It loops around in a big circle.
On Wednesdays no cars are allowed - just bicyclers and walkers.

Tossing the Brompton into the trunk I headed out,
leaving Knoxville before six and arrived at two minutes after seven.
I thought I would be early and there would be plenty of parking spaces.
There were only four spaces left in the entire Cades Cove parking area.
I talked to the park rangers and they said they had been there since 4 a.m.
They laughed cheerfully when I told them I thought I was arriving early!

I got on the Brompton and blazed in the early morning sunlight!!
Nobody passed me!
It took me 46 minutes to complete the loop, including stops for photos.
My pulse stayed above 110 almost the whole time.
Got up to 150 at times.
For the whole 11 miles my average pulse was 123.

Saw one bear traveling through a field.
Saw a deer too -it was just ignoring everyone and walking along the road.

There were hundreds and hundreds of bicyclers on the loop.
As I left, there were no parking spaces.
People were parking along the side of the road for mile after mile after mile,
walking their bicycles up the steep mountain hills to get to Cades Cove.
Iím very glad I got there so early and was able to get a parking spot.

Then I went to Townsend and rode on that trail through town.
Saw the River Rat tubing place where we go tubing on the Little river.
The Townsend ride was a lot of fun.

So itís a great bicycle adventure day!


Horse stable near the start of the Cades Cove Loop.


Cades Cove is a beautiful spot on the Smoky Mountains. There are some walking trails along the loop too.


Saw a bear walking through one of the fields.





Nearby is Townsend Tennessee which has a great bike trail.


The Little River runs beside Townsend.
There are several tubing shops where you can rent tubes and ride on the river.
The have 90 minute rides and sometimes 3-4 hour rides.
A bus takes you upstream and drops you off -
you can ride as many times as you want in a day.
There are some exciting places along the river with some white water,
and some calm relaxing places too.
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Old 06-30-24, 09:44 AM
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Originally Posted by OldTryGuy
Wishing I had a High Tech New Brompton but sadly only ride a 1982 DAHON 20" all steel with Shimano SIS that my neighbor bought new and just gave me. A few weeks ago able to hit 29.2mph with the 60 tooth chainring and pair of 100psi 20x1.75 tires a friend gave me.

Enjoy the Brompton.
I just got an older steel Dahon and I am very happy with it. I'm happy for the OP too that he got a Brompton, but the Dahon is fun!
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Old 07-02-24, 02:24 PM
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I saw a guy riding down Alpe D'Huez, in the rain, on a Brompton!!

Interesting to say the least.
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Old 07-10-24, 06:52 AM
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I just noticed there is a guy commuting on an electric Brompton along my local road. He was cruising along quite nicely. Looks like a great combination with the pedal assist. I once saw a group of fit guys riding regular unpowered Bromptons for a laugh during a local Sportif and they were definitely handicapped compared to a normal road bike!
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Old 07-10-24, 07:14 AM
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I will turn 60 in September "God willing and the crick don't rise" as my boss says, and I bought two folders recently. I NEVER would have thought I'd enjoy a folder so much. I took one to the Cape for family vacation and had a lot of fun on it. It was nice to put it INSIDE the car and not need a rack. I'm thinking of modifying the other one into a faster drop bar bike.

Glad the OP is enjoying his so much. I get it.
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