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Folding Bikes Discuss the unique features and issues of folding bikes. Also a great place to learn what folding bike will work best for your needs.

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Old 11-06-17, 08:46 PM   #1
EssGee
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My review of new Columbia Compax Folding Bike.

In photography, I used to suffer from GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome). Hopefully, the same thing is not happening with folding bikes.

My recent purchase - a Columbia Compax 26" folding bike. Of course, I can rationalize my purchase. While riding my Solorock Hunter, I met someone getting ready to ride a Montague Paratrooper. I liked the style and the idea of a full-sized folder, but not the price - a range of $800-$1200us. So I went online and found this model being sold by Walmart for $179us with free shipping . . . Voila!

Columbia is an old company - not sure if this is the original or a re-brand from a manufacturer that bought the name. My opinion - well made, aluminum frame, steel forks, 21-gear Power derailleur. Remove the seat and front wheel - the bike weighs about 24 lbs. I use bungee cords to keep it folded and I can wheel it around on one wheel instead of carrying while folded. It did require a tune-up and two modifications. A rear rack extension off the seat post and an adjustable handle-bar riser for comfort. I swapped out the seat for an extra I already had - however, their seat feels like it would be comfortable also. Unfortunately, pedals do not fold - may change out later.
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Old 11-06-17, 11:46 PM   #2
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[QUOTE=EssGee;19976853] the bike weighs about 24 lbs. .[/QUOTE

Really?!?!? 24 lbs????
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Old 11-07-17, 12:03 AM   #3
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Same as this one? Weight listed at 38 lb.:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Folding-Bik...-/201561848943

...so that means the saddle & front wheel weigh 14 lb.?
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Old 11-07-17, 08:23 PM   #4
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I just weighed it again - minus seat/stem and front wheel - I am reading 25 lbs.
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Old 11-07-17, 08:24 PM   #5
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Unless there is something wrong with my scale - I wonder if they are just listing the shipping weight as the bike weight?
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Old 11-07-17, 09:19 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EssGee View Post
Unless there is something wrong with my scale - I wonder if they are just listing the shipping weight as the bike weight?
Based upon the size of the bike, the suspension, etc., I would assume that there is something wrong with your scale. I use the medical scale at our local veterinarian's office since it has a big flat surface and is accurate.
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Old 11-07-17, 09:25 PM   #7
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On the ebay link, the "bike weight" is listed at 38 lb.

On this link, under the Q&A section, also 38 lb.:

https://www.walmart.com/ip/26-Columb...2870#read-more
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Old 11-08-17, 04:18 AM   #8
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Columbia folding bike is based on a design Columbia made for the US Army

I assume loosely based as the bike has very low end components and those front shocks look extremely weak. To find 'Power' derailleurs in the UK you would be looking at low cost children's bikes.

I'm no fan of freewheels but at least on a road bike they are low end but fit for purpose but on a mountain bike especially without rear suspension any drops you make has a high chance of bending the rear axle. Frame looks good though which is often the only part fit for purpose as that is where much of the certification is focused but the other components look weak and short life. Always amazes me that they fit such tyres on bikes like these. Semi-slicks would be much better, its really a road bike in a mountain bike style and only really suitable for gravel and very light off road use. Frankly it would be a better bike with rigid forks. If I had that bike I'd look to buy another cheap s/hand bike with higher end components to use as a donor bike and do a swop around of parts before then selling that bike with the Columbia's lower end parts for whatever I could get for it. It's easier to make a strong frame out of steel, easier welds etc. Budget aluminium frames are I believe a greater safety risk because you get a higher ratio of poorly welded frames compared to steel. This depends on where they are made but some of the small factories in China that do their own aluminium frame welding can be inconsistent quality. Knowing how walmart resource from the very cheapest suppliers always pushing for lower prices it wouldn't surprise me if such basic factories are used.

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