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Am trying to decide between two folding bikes.. input pls?

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Am trying to decide between two folding bikes.. input pls?

Old 03-10-16, 02:43 PM
  #1  
LBlady111
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Am trying to decide between two folding bikes.. input pls?

Thanks to the person in the general discussion area that directed me to the Folding Bike forum. I hadn't scrolled far enough down to see it before originally posting my questions in the general forum area.

I'm not new to bikes though new to folding bikes. I have looked at a number of bikes online and have decided that in my price range (up to about $700) and my need for a pretty lightweight bike because of 2 failed back surgeries that don't allow for lifting much over 25lbs and a small vehicle to fit my folding bike into that I'm considering the Mini Cooper Folding Bike and the Dahon Mu P8.

I've seen the Mini Cooper at a Mini Cooper car dealership and lifted it, sat on it, put it in my trunk (Ford CMax hybrid) and price is do-able. I'm not sure whether I'd want the lime green model with the seat post pump in it (more expensive) or the black model without the seat post pump. I probably will have to switch the saddle/seat out and am considering adding a thudbuster re my low back pain with riding which I'm used to by now just don't want to overly aggravate it to a point of not wanting to ride at all.

I've not seen the Dahon Mu P8 but it's weight is the same as the Mini Cooper and sounds like it gets the same level of review as the Mini Cooper bike for the price range.

My big thing is with either would be being able to switch out saddles/seats and add a thudbuster in order to make the ride more comfy.

I'm 5'2" and weigh 115 lbs so not a big gal though have multiple injured parts like low back, bilateral posterior tibial tendonitis in both feet, knees have arthritis and rt has had surgery, have some upper back & neck probs too. Still for the bike riding I'd be doing which is local thru out my little area on sidewalks, streets, and beach bike paths I think either the Mini Cooper or the Dahon Mu P8 would do.

Any input on these bikes? I don't want to get a really cheap one as weight is a factor and the closer it creeps to 30lbs with switching out a seat or adding a thudbuster I'd not be able to lift it into my vehicle myself easily enough.

My current bike is a beach cruiser but it's way to heavy for me to transport anymore since I had to get rid of my SUV (was too heavy anyway for me re putting on bike rack). Just sold my hybrid bike as it wasn't a step thru and I just found myself not wanting to ride it much anymore.

I'm hoping a folding bike will be just what I want and need.
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Old 03-11-16, 02:40 PM
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Try to test ride as many different models as you can. And that also means; folding, lifting, trying to see if it fits your trunk.
May have to go to a few shops; or one shop that carries a few brands/models. Craigslist might be another resource if you
don't mind used. Good luck; let us know which one you end up with.
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Old 03-11-16, 03:47 PM
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Its possible to make a thudbuster fit a number of folding bikes.the problem is getting a post long enough. They are available for Dahons.
Otherwise.
If you can find a telescopic post on ebay that fits the bike with or without a shim. Then swap a thudbuster for the inner section.
Need to research the diameter of the bikes seat post and then ask about the internals of any telescopic post you can find.
I have used this method to add a suspension seatpost to a mezzo and a thudbuster to a birdie. Thudbuster on the birdie works great. Its like a sofa!
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Old 03-11-16, 03:51 PM
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I'm a 5-3 hundred pound gal. No major issues like you have but can tell you that I hated the Thudbuster. It really gave me a backache every time I rode it. And it will add weight to the bike. A seatpost pump will also add weight.

I have a Mu Uno and adore it. It's about 22 pounds and I can carry it up and down stairs without issue, either opened or closed. It is a single speed version of the Mu, so that's probably a bit lighter too. But I live in flat Miami so I don't need gears.
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Old 03-11-16, 04:08 PM
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Thanks for all the replies! I've decided to order the Mini Cooper Folding bike since I was able to check it out in person and it seemed markedly lighter than a friends fold up Dahon I checked out although I'm sure his wasn't a Dahon Mu P8 which was the other bike I was considering.

A lot of the terrain I'll be on will be flat though would like the gears for some inclines as I'll be on in city streets~ My beach cruiser is a single speed and great for around here or on straight ride on local beach bike paths though otherwise I find it very limiting anymore. I've gotten rid of a few other bikes I had that were multi speeds and either a mountain or hybrid bike so hopefully this folding bike will serve me well!
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Old 03-11-16, 04:29 PM
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I've not ridden these, but have seen them and they look like great bikes and they have a lot of variety as well. https://www.bikefriday.com/betatest/
(and sorry I have nothing to offer re. the two you are asking about:)
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Old 03-11-16, 06:15 PM
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The Bike Friday models do look great .. they're well over my budget at this point however maybe in the future ... thanks for the link as it's nice to know what's out there to look forward to even if I can't afford it right now!
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Old 03-11-16, 08:22 PM
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Originally Posted by LBlady111 View Post
The Bike Friday models do look great .. they're well over my budget at this point however maybe in the future ... thanks for the link as it's nice to know what's out there to look forward to even if I can't afford it right now!
If you are patient, you can find them used. It took me 3 months of searching craigslist in nearby states as well as locally, but I picked up a very nice one for under $600. Being a folder, they can be easily shipped to you. So - if you decide after a while that you like having a folding bike but want something else (American made, cromoly steel instead of aluminum, etc.) just be patient and it will come.
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Old 03-11-16, 09:12 PM
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Good suggestion! The bike I was going to buy got sold today while I was still making up my mind so the mini cooper dealership ordered another one to have in stock. I was told I could have that one when it comes in which should be tomorrow or Monday at latest (the black one not lime green w/seat post pump). So actually I've still not bought my bike yet so will check Craigslist just to see what might be on there! Yep definitely a good suggestion so even if I get my new bike I'll keep my eyes open re other "good deals" re CL!
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Old 03-15-16, 07:19 AM
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I see Thudbusters on folding bikes and thought I'd consider one, but I don't think they are necessary. At least the bikes that I have ridden (Mezzo, Bike Friday, Dahon Mu) have such long seat tubes that I get a lot of flex/shock absorption from them. With you back issue you may still consider that, but ride a bit before you invest.
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Old 03-15-16, 07:47 AM
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If whatever you wind up with will support larger tires, Schwalbe Big Apple tires may do a lot for your back since they absorb shock and vibration much better than smaller tires with higher pressure. Kind of like your beach cruiser.
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Old 03-15-16, 10:17 AM
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Originally Posted by Ridefreemc View Post
I see Thudbusters on folding bikes and thought I'd consider one, but I don't think they are necessary. At least the bikes that I have ridden (Mezzo, Bike Friday, Dahon Mu) .....
Maybe, but its a bit like complaining your partners too good looking!!

People said that I didn't need a thudbuster on a Birdie that has big apples on. But it is the most comfortable bike I own. More comfortable than my full suspension bike. (except on very large bumps).
It raises the Biride to being a comfortable off road bike rather than a tollerable bike off road.
Mezzo is a stiff unforgiving but fast bike so it opens that up to more terrain also.

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Old 03-15-16, 11:32 AM
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Hi @LBlady111, I have a MINI Cooper folder (it's actually a Dahon Vybe D7 rebranded) and my wife a Dahon Mu P8. So, I recommend you the Mu P8 because it is lighter and the alumnium (7005) quality is much better. I set on both bikes a Nexus 8r36 internal hub and Ultegra "52T+Sram Guard" Crankset and Avid Single Digit 7 V-brakes (with dual compound kool stop pads) and Continental Tour RIDE tires plus Michelin Protek Max tubes. And in the end the Mu P8 is lighter and convenient.

Best.

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Old 03-15-16, 07:02 PM
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Dahon Speed P8,... Wonderful bike.
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Old 03-15-16, 09:24 PM
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Nothing will look as good next to your mini Cooper as a Brompton. Just saying... ;-)
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Old 03-16-16, 10:25 AM
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got my MC yesterday from Mini Cooper car dealership. got home, carried it from trunk of car to front step..made it but was grunting (not that far a walk) just felt a bit heavy to carry folded. so unfolded, went about unpacking and putting it right .. well I think I got it all except the handle bar hinge looks like it's not aligned properly and it doesn't seem to latch as securely as I think it should. I have an appt. to have professional bike shop person check it out. Can't get it done today so tomorrow a.m. Now .. was up in the wee hours of a.m. and made mistake of googling saddles and suspension etc re folding bikes.. saw "full suspension bikes" and clicked on link and went to DownTube bike link. Wow! Impressive and wish I had seen this before buying my bike! Sale prices are great! Now I'm wondering should I get one of these guys?! The weight is a little bit more and that was my big thing re getting it in and out of my vehicle however it sounds really good for the prices re suspension. Ok going to do laundry and forget about this topic for a while...
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Old 03-16-16, 11:09 AM
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You can make yourself crazy with all the bikes out there, ha ha. Just ride the one you have now for a little while; you'll figure out what you like and don't like. Then, when you are ready, you can get something that meets your needs a little better. But you won't know what those needs are unless you actually ride a folder - specs can tell you some things, but actually riding is better feedback.
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Old 03-16-16, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by linberl View Post
You can make yourself crazy with all the bikes out there, ha ha. Just ride the one you have now for a little while; you'll figure out what you like and don't like. Then, when you are ready, you can get something that meets your needs a little better. But you won't know what those needs are unless you actually ride a folder - specs can tell you some things, but actually riding is better feedback.
this is always the correct answer.
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Old 03-16-16, 12:26 PM
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Common sense prevails! Thanks guys!!!

Also thanks Bruce re following my posts. I tried to p.m. u back but didn't have enough posts.. then everything got erased so just wanted to let u know I appreciate your input quite a bit re the DT full suspension and also possibly the bike u mentioned will b something better for me re weight. At this point I guess I'll settle down a bit, have the MC checked out, ride it a bit and see if I can hang with getting it in and out of my vehicle Ok esp. if I add a Thudbuster and/or heavier seat. I figure I can always remove the seat post and deal with it separately if need be to lighten the overall load a bit. Will check it all out and think on it~ thanks very much!!!

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Old 03-16-16, 12:54 PM
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Bang on.
You have a great bike. No folder is perfect. Try it and enjoy it. Then work out if you need to change it later. You ll learn a lot about what important to you in your folding bike choice. I have had several budget,(sub 100 used) folders that have worked perfectly for me for years before I upgraded.
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Old 03-16-16, 01:24 PM
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Originally Posted by LBlady111 View Post
Common sense prevails! Thanks guys!!!

Also thanks Bruce re following my posts. I tried to p.m. u back but didn't have enough posts.. then everything got erased so just wanted to let u know I appreciate your input quite a bit re the DT full suspension and also possibly the bike u mentioned will b something better for me re weight. At this point I guess I'll settle down a bit, have the MC checked out, ride it a bit and see if I can hang with getting it in and out of my vehicle Ok esp. if I add a Thudbuster and/or heavier seat. I figure I can always remove the seat post and deal with it separately if need be to lighten the overall load a bit. Will check it all out and think on it~ thanks very much!!!

I'm not familiar with the bike you got but if you can roll it tilted on one wheel when folded, then consider getting a folding "doggie" ramp to help you get it in the car. You wouldn't have to lift it, just push it up a small ramp and turn it. something to consider.
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Old 03-16-16, 01:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Ridefreemc View Post
I see Thudbusters on folding bikes and thought I'd consider one, but I don't think they are necessary. At least the bikes that I have ridden (Mezzo, Bike Friday, Dahon Mu) have such long seat tubes that I get a lot of flex/shock absorption from them. With you back issue you may still consider that, but ride a bit before you invest.
Noticed an improved ride on my S6 after installing a Ti seatpost. Also lost a pound of weight(even with adding the Brooks). About $65 shipped off eBay,you can prolly find something similar for a Dahon-style folder.
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Old 03-16-16, 01:42 PM
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If you haven't had bought your bike yet, I was gonna suggest a Tern Link D8 because it can have a trolley rack attachment which lets you roll it better when folded. Or a Dahon Speed P8, since the Big Apples/Streetpac tires might add a little comfort to the ride and with a steel frame too. A little more weight compared to the Mu p8 but a little less money too.
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Old 03-16-16, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by LBlady111 View Post
got my MC yesterday from Mini Cooper car dealership. got home, carried it from trunk of car to front step..made it but was grunting (not that far a walk) just felt a bit heavy to carry folded.
I am curious to know if you have actually weighed this bike to see if the advertised weight was accurate. You can do this easily at your local pet store (Petsmart, etc.) since they usually have wide floor-level scales for dogs and cats.
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Old 03-16-16, 03:11 PM
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love this website so much for all the good input I'm getting! Thanx!!!! Great suggestion re weighing the bike .. can even do that my Vet's which is close by and an area I'll want to take the bike to ride (Sunset Beach CA). Not folded it's super easy for me to pick up.. folded I think it's more the cumbersomeness of it that gets me a bit or at least thus far. Again I just got it so and did pretty good getting it to my front door. That's way more than I could have done with any other bike that I've owned unless riding it or walking it.

Today is the most perfect beach day... wish I had it ready to go there now tho am going to head out and take a walk .. the walking path (fairly new) is adjacent to the bike path where I walk I'll be looking at bikes flying by and thinking "that's me" as soon as I get the bike checked out and Ok'd!!!! Then I'm off to see what I can see and feel what I will feel (re the ride)!
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