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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 04-05-07, 06:50 AM   #1
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Commuting/Short Touring folder - options?

Hi all,
I'm fascinated by folding bikes. I seem to be alone in my crowd (one of my friends has an unhealthy amount of hatred for them) but I find them beautiful to look at and I just love the whole concept.

I'm in the market for a folder which could take me on my very short (2 miles) daily commute, but also one I could take on holidays (I'm going to prague for a week next month) and on a 3 week tour of holland, belgium, luxembourg, france and germany (very brief visits, but a good few hills to negotiate, travelling with the bare minimum). I use trains a lot too, and it'd be great to be able to get on a train without being scorned.

Budget is the only problem really. I have about 500 in all. I've been looking at Dahon this morning - the Speed P8 and the Curve D3. I understand these come with some kind of rack? Anyway, I'm open to all suggestions.

Thanks everyone.
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Old 04-05-07, 01:05 PM   #2
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One way of deciding is start with the wheel size you want.
The Dahon curve has 16" wheels that make it a bad choice for poor road conditions. Mu XL has 20" wheels.

On trains I recommend putting it in a travel bag, or at least wrapping it in a painters drop cloth and bungee cords.

If restoration is an option check out ads in the UK for a Moulton Mini with a separable frame.
2000 Montague CX, I do not recommend it, but still ride it.
Strida 3, I recommend it for rides < 10mi wo steep hills.
2006 Rowbike 720 Sport, I recommend it as an exercise bike.
1996 Birdy, Recommend.
Wieleder CARiBIKE (folding), decent frame.
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Old 04-05-07, 01:28 PM   #3
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This should be a relevant thread for you ... note that she talks about a special discount for the Brompton.

Long story short, quick ... get out there and test ride a few Dahons and Bromptons.
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Old 04-05-07, 04:17 PM   #4
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Most folders will fit your needs, since they are kind of basic.... I'd start by figuring out your price range.

If you can swing $700+, and don't plan to ride extensive distances on your tour, I'd suggest a Brompton. Great fold, minimal break-down for travel, built-in rack and suspension.

If you insist on going cheap (which I personally don't recommend), I guess you can get a Downtube.

In the moderate range ($400), a lower-end Dahon should be fine. I used a Mariner D7 for a week in Belgium, and put around 2000 miles on it before deciding to upgrade. In fact, it handled a light (25 lb) load very well. No problems climbing hills or taking it on the trains. I still use it as a "beater" bike, by the way.
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Old 04-05-07, 09:32 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by SkyPilot
(one of my friends has an unhealthy amount of hatred for them)
It seems that we have a commun friend!
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