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subigo 08-30-09 03:24 AM

Downtube 2009 FS -vs- 2009 Dahon Boardwalk
It's been a while since I last posted on bikeforums, but after moving into an apartment, and buying a smaller car, I'm thinking it's time for a folder :) My problem is, I just can't decide between these two, totally different bikes...

Downtube 2009 FS -vs- 2009 Dahon Boardwalk

I'll mainly be using this for recreational rides and the occasional trip to the store. My normal "fun" ride takes me down a gravel / dirt trail for about a mile. I'm 6 foot even and 170 pounds.

For about the past week I was sold on the Dahon Boardwalk, especially since it's on sale from performance for $199 with free shipping. I've wanted one ever since I saw these pictures. My only concern (other than the fact that I can't ride it before buying it), was the welded handlebar. But after seeing someone use a hacksaw on the thing, my worries were over.

Then today I started to wonder just how smooth those occasional dirt trails would be on the Dahon... not to mention the fact that I live in the Ozarks and the hills are insane. So then the Downtube started to sound good... but it's almost twice the price.

Anyway, any suggestions/opinions would be great. I've been reading about these for 4 hours straight and I'm about to pass out (it's 4:30am here). I just feel like I need to make a decision asap, because the 20% off at performance ends tomorrow.

chucky 08-30-09 06:56 AM

Pneumatic tires are the best affordable suspension system yet designed and all bikes have them. So I wouldn't count the full suspension on the Downtube as a desirable feature.

As to the gears, since you plan on riding recreationally it really depends on what you think is fun and only you can answer that question. However, I have to wonder if you're looking to make things easier with gears then why bother riding at all?

badmother 08-30-09 07:12 AM


Originally Posted by chucky (Post 9582471)
However, I have to wonder if you're looking to make things easier with gears then why bother riding at all?


chucky 08-30-09 07:26 AM


Originally Posted by badmother (Post 9582523)

To put it another way, if you're just riding for fun and your idea of fun is to put in less effort then why not forget about cycling altogether and just go for a sunday drive?

jakub.ner 08-30-09 09:09 AM

Gears and suspension are both very useful. Not sure what sort of retro grouchiness you're into Chucky, but that's hardly sound advice. I did the ss and fixie stuff (including a 240 km ride on a ss Swift) and it does sometimes leave something to be desired.

It should be self evident that gears let you spin up hills and not spin out down them.

Suspension--especially front--allows for better traction on uneven surfaces such as trails with roots.

I was recently on a thread comparing the Swift to a DT Nova. I learned there that DTs are apparntly pretty tough. I'd get the DT over a Dahon for this. But that's just my quirk and I already have 2 Dahons and cracked the frame on a third last year: I'm fairly demending of my bikes.

GeorgePaul 08-30-09 09:15 AM

I'm happy with my 2009 Dahon Boardwalk, but I put a 3 speed hub in it. Since you're in the (very beautiful) Ozarks, get something with gears.

dschwarz 08-30-09 02:48 PM

Nothing against the Boardwalk - sometimes simple is best, and that bike is pretty darn simple (but heavy!) The Downtube 9FS is a more versatile bike. Gears are a good thing. You can mod the 9FS without taking a hacksaw to it. Etc.

Note the difference between the 2009 and 2009.5 Downtube models - the 2009.5 has clearcoat paint over powdercoat finish. The 2009 just has a painted finish - much less durable. I'd spend the extra $50 on the 2009.5 if I had the choice. Don't know what finish the Boardwalk has.

chucky 08-30-09 09:36 PM


Originally Posted by jakub.ner (Post 9582885)
Not sure what sort of retro grouchiness you're into Chucky, but that's hardly sound advice.

Sorry, not meant to be grouchy, just don't understand the desire to ride recreationally so I guess I shouldn't comment. But I still think a decent pneumatic tire will do a better job than the cheap DT suspension.


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