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Helix Update?

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Old 11-14-17, 02:13 AM
  #601  
MrFlamey
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Originally Posted by Jipe View Post
Note that the saddle-handlebar distance of the Brompton is bigger than the one of the Helix what better fits for US/European riders.
That's actually a great point that I hadn't thought about and should have probably checked before buying a Helix. My Tern Verge's seat and handle bars feel pretty close together. Although I'm not massive, at 183cm I'm reasonably tall, and have to have my seat at max height to avoid knee discomfort on longer rides. Mostly the ride is comfortable, but on any kind of steep hill (anything over 10% grade I think) I have to lean forward right over the handlebars to keep stable and avoid accidental wheelies. It's not helped by often having a backpack full of crap with me on long rides. God, I hope the Helix is better than the Verge in that regard, though thankfully most roads around here are not 10% or more
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Old 11-14-17, 03:56 AM
  #602  
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Originally Posted by Joe Remi View Post
Well you're describing subjective things like "feeling secure", and promoting them as statements of engineering fact as if they would translate to everyone. As a general rule bigger wheels tend to feel more stable than smaller to most riders, in spite of the fact that I love my Brompton and feel fine sailing it down the very steep hill I live on.
Steering stability means that when a disturbance occur on the steering (riding in a pothole for instance), it self returns to its neutral position (it returns without any need of a rider action on the steering)..

According to this definition, all bikes sold on the market are stable, nobody would sell an unstable bike, i.e. a bike that would crash when a steering disturbance occur (and without rider action).

What makes the difference between very stable and less stable bikes is how fast the steering returns to its neutral position, some do that very quickly, some less quickly. Some steering have some oscillations before staying in the neutral position.

If you look at the Brommie, when the front bag is heavy loaded, it is less stable because it returns not as quickly as usual and if the load is heavy and wide, it may even oscillate once.

Such a behavior makes a bike feel less secure, you want to keep (both) hands on the handlebar while you can ride one or no hands with a very stable bike.

The wheel size, due to the gyroscopic effect, has some influence on this behavior but the frame geometry is the dominating factor for stability. As said, some lightweight race bikes have a very "nervous" and not very stable steering while they have big wheels.

Saying that Helix will be very stable, more stable than a Brompton only because it has bigger wheels is not valid.

The only way to know is to make a test ride with Helix and nobody did it yet with the final/last design that doesn't exist yet and will be very different from the prototype made for the kickstarter campaign.

This is for steering stability which is only one characteristics of the behavior of a bike. There is also cornering ability, road surface sensitivity, wind sensitivity, ability/efficiency to transfer power to the ground... many parameters that make the difference between an excellent bike, a good bike... a poor bike and cannot be evaluated from the bike datasheet.
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Old 11-14-17, 04:16 AM
  #603  
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Originally Posted by MrFlamey View Post
That's actually a great point that I hadn't thought about and should have probably checked before buying a Helix. My Tern Verge's seat and handle bars feel pretty close together. Although I'm not massive, at 183cm I'm reasonably tall, and have to have my seat at max height to avoid knee discomfort on longer rides. Mostly the ride is comfortable, but on any kind of steep hill (anything over 10% grade I think) I have to lean forward right over the handlebars to keep stable and avoid accidental wheelies. It's not helped by often having a backpack full of crap with me on long rides. God, I hope the Helix is better than the Verge in that regard, though thankfully most roads around here are not 10% or more
Some Helix numbers to consider (from the startup announcement):

Stack: 672 mm / 26.5 in
Reach: 435 mm / 17.1 in
Seat post height to pedal spindle: 932 mm / 36.7 in max | 580 mm / 22.8 in min

Also, the stem might be somewhere in the 50mm range. I'm sure you'll be able to swap into a much longer stem (if needed).
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Old 11-14-17, 05:42 AM
  #604  
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I agree with Dakine, the stem could be swapped.
In terms of folders, I am quite pleased, for example, with my Tern Node stem.

It is extremely sturdy and a breeze to adjust (i regularly change from a more aggressive forward, to a more relaxed up position). That's only one example of a possible modification.

Dimensions are also a major concern of mine being 198 cm tall. No folder is specified to my size, but the Node is quite comfortable. Even on longer rides (60+ km with some hills).
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Old 11-14-17, 06:40 AM
  #605  
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Originally Posted by DaKineDatFolds View Post
Some Helix numbers to consider (from the startup announcement):

Stack: 672 mm / 26.5 in
Reach: 435 mm / 17.1 in
Seat post height to pedal spindle: 932 mm / 36.7 in max | 580 mm / 22.8 in min

Also, the stem appears to be somewhere 30's mm range. I'm sure you'll be able to swap into a much longer stem (if needed).
That is some serious stack. Do they have any method to adjust that down?
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Old 11-14-17, 07:13 AM
  #606  
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Originally Posted by Nightdiver View Post
That is some serious stack. Do they have any method to adjust that down?
Ouch! You're right. That's practically the same as the standover...

According to the illustration, my guess is yes, it can be adjusted down. Also note the indication that those numbers are subject to change. It appears that "stack" seems to be in a maxed up position.
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Old 11-14-17, 01:17 PM
  #607  
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As of last night I have successfully sold my backers pledge. I am as interested as ever in the Helix and keenly hoping this venture becomes a success. They are at the point of finishing the test bike; it has been delayed by delivery of some CNC parts, but the welding development stage has been completed. So as I see it, the frame may be completed this week, then perhaps a month of testing, then production of backers bikes. January is my latest estimate. Helix is as disappointed as everyone else by the extra delay.

I expect testing to breeze through. The frame was analysed by finite element analysis, the welds are the absolute best technology can currently produce and the design is very sound, having gone through several iterations.

The biggest doubt lies in generating enough sales to break even. Only if the bike price remains substantially where it was pitched, may this happen, with large numbers in production. Going the route of the Hummingbird lies failure.
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Old 11-14-17, 01:45 PM
  #608  
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Rather than looking at the dimensions, I take the more ignorant & trusting approach....
I rely upon Helix's assertion that handling will be like a medium sized commuter bike.
I've ridden those. Am I too trusting?

I need my bike by June. It's transportation around a big antique engine show.
The gearheads will love this thing, even though it's thoroughly modern.

Dumb question...
Cant' frame stack be reduced simply by lowering the stem?

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Old 11-14-17, 03:45 PM
  #609  
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I made some super-imposed pic of the Helix vs my Ti Swift (medium-large) and a Brompton pic I found somewhere on the web.





The pics were placed such that cranksets would match position but not height; height was determined by the wheels. The idea is that if the crankset determines everything else, you can see where the handlebars and saddle end up. That should tell you something about the Helix geometry.
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Old 11-15-17, 03:19 AM
  #610  
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Originally Posted by jur View Post
As of last night I have successfully sold my backers pledge.
As of Yesterday, I succesfully took over the pledge of jur :-)
As someone who was on the fence during the Kickstarter launch, but at that time with rather empty pockets and a need for a folding bike quickly, I am extremely happy to be on board again. I bought at the time a second hand Brompton which is serving me well. But it is evident that the Helix is on paper addressing many of the Brompton's weaker points. Let's hope that reality confirms this once the Helix is out in the wild..
I am thrilled to be able to now follow this up so closely again and can not wait for the Helix to land on my doorstep..
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Old 11-15-17, 05:01 AM
  #611  
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Originally Posted by jur View Post
I made some super-imposed pic of the Helix vs my Ti Swift (medium-large) and a Brompton pic I found somewhere on the web.

The pics were placed such that cranksets would match position but not height; height was determined by the wheels. The idea is that if the crankset determines everything else, you can see where the handlebars and saddle end up. That should tell you something about the Helix geometry.
The Brompton comparison seems to me strange as the Brompton Effective Top Tube Length is between 670 and 715mm while the one of the Helix is only 590mm (see //i.pinimg.com/originals/6a/8b/dd/6a8bdd082212af3d397e475095324c17.jpg)
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Old 11-15-17, 06:28 AM
  #612  
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The wheelbase comparison seems also a little bit wrong : Helix wheelbase is 1066 while Brompton wheelbase is 1040, only about 2% difference, I have the impression that the difference is bigger on the drawing ?
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Old 11-15-17, 01:13 PM
  #613  
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Originally Posted by SurfHenk View Post
As of Yesterday, I succesfully took over the pledge of jur :-)
As someone who was on the fence during the Kickstarter launch, but at that time with rather empty pockets and a need for a folding bike quickly, I am extremely happy to be on board again. I bought at the time a second hand Brompton which is serving me well. But it is evident that the Helix is on paper addressing many of the Brompton's weaker points. Let's hope that reality confirms this once the Helix is out in the wild..
I am thrilled to be able to now follow this up so closely again and can not wait for the Helix to land on my doorstep..
I think you will be a credit to the Helix venture. I have been very critical and even bitter about a year ago. Enough so that Peter asked me personally to stop posting negative thoughts, as it might have a negative impact on his business. I saw that he was correct so I agreed. Since then he has changed his modus operandi about updates and eliminated the biggest gripe, of poorly communicating. Things are going great and the project is now approximately where it was 2 years ago wrt delivery. In the 2 years a huge amount of stuff has happened and most importantly, the Helix seems a far more refined product. So, far from tanking, the project is going very well. Peter has worked himself extremely hard. The next year or so is going to be super critical for generating sales and meeting sale demands.
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Old 11-17-17, 02:48 AM
  #614  
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Originally Posted by jur View Post
I think you will be a credit to the Helix venture. I have been very critical and even bitter about a year ago. Enough so that Peter asked me personally to stop posting negative thoughts, as it might have a negative impact on his business. I saw that he was correct so I agreed. Since then he has changed his modus operandi about updates and eliminated the biggest gripe, of poorly communicating. Things are going great and the project is now approximately where it was 2 years ago wrt delivery. In the 2 years a huge amount of stuff has happened and most importantly, the Helix seems a far more refined product. So, far from tanking, the project is going very well. Peter has worked himself extremely hard. The next year or so is going to be super critical for generating sales and meeting sale demands.
I do not understand why you transmitted your pledge f you are now so positive about Helix, the bike and the success of the project ?
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Old 11-17-17, 09:20 AM
  #615  
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While I have zero interest in Helix, I follow this thread with fascination, like a theatrical play that I have no stake in either
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Old 11-17-17, 10:20 AM
  #616  
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Originally Posted by 2_i View Post
While I have zero interest in Helix, I follow this thread with fascination, like a theatrical play that I have no stake in either
Me, too!!! Of course, it also takes my mind off the wait for my share roller, lol.
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Old 11-17-17, 10:54 AM
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I've been following this thread, more out of fascination with how well they do with a titanium folding frame. Ti is a difficult metal to work with. Put that into context with a folding ti frame and difficulty increases exponentially. In today's challenging bicycle market, I'm rooting for the underdog and hope they do well. A successful design and implementation might even pave the way for other ti folders to enter the market.
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Old 11-17-17, 04:17 PM
  #618  
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Originally Posted by Jipe View Post
I do not understand why you transmitted your pledge f you are now so positive about Helix, the bike and the success of the project ?
Please stop trying to change his mind :-)
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Old 11-18-17, 09:58 AM
  #619  
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Originally Posted by 2_i View Post
While I have zero interest in Helix, I follow this thread with fascination, like a theatrical play that I have no stake in either
+1

I want to point out that no one spends this kind of money to break even. The price of future production will have to go up. Way up!
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Old 11-22-17, 12:52 AM
  #620  
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Originally Posted by Jipe View Post
I do not understand why you transmitted your pledge f you are now so positive about Helix, the bike and the success of the project ?
Several reasons:

1. I have all the bikes I want and need. 3 bikes, for commuting. 1x Ti go-fast, 1x Brompton, 1x Moulton bad weather-bike, with electric kit installed. The Helix was going to create the situation, which bike will I let go? It was clearly redundant. (But very desirable.)
2. Waiting for 2 years took the shine away. I'm over it, desirable or not.
3. I am interested in some real estate to look after my children. Real estate is getting crazier by the minute here, so every penny will help.
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Old 11-22-17, 01:54 AM
  #621  
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Greetings Everyone!

I am a Helix backer and a long time lurker in this thread. I am interested selling my backer position. Please send me a message if interested.

Thanks!

Last edited by RedTrek; 11-22-17 at 02:01 AM. Reason: error
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Old 11-23-17, 04:05 AM
  #622  
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Originally Posted by RedTrek View Post
Greetings Everyone!

I am a Helix backer and a long time lurker in this thread. I am interested selling my backer position. Please send me a message if interested.

Thanks!
With you and jur selling your backer positions recently, this may begin to light a fire under Team Helix. "Hey, our foundation seems to be shifting."
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Old 11-23-17, 03:53 PM
  #623  
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Interested

Hi RedTrek-

Iím interested in your backer position. I donít have enough posts to send you a direct message. Would be able to send me a direct message to discuss?

Many thanks!

Originally Posted by RedTrek View Post
Greetings Everyone!

I am a Helix backer and a long time lurker in this thread. I am interested selling my backer position. Please send me a message if interested.

Thanks!
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Old 11-25-17, 12:42 AM
  #624  
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The latest update posted tonight promises the test bikes will be finished in the next two weeks, just like all updates posted since September.

I think they are having serious welding problems or their the 5-axis CNC subcontractor is unable to do their job. Either way, things don't look good.

They have gone from an initial plan of building the frame using 6 jigs to the current estimate of 10 jigs. I would guess that the cost of welding the frame is now 50 to 100 percent higher than initially expected, and they still can't make a test frame after 3 months of trying.

Helix's probability of success continues to drop.
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Old 11-25-17, 03:10 AM
  #625  
Joe Remi
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Ugh, this is the mess I was afraid he was going to get into: He's priced the bike too low to ever get it built, and he's collected too much money to turn back. Fabulous.
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