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Brompton L5 vs 2008 Dahon Curve SL

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Brompton L5 vs 2008 Dahon Curve SL

Old 12-29-09, 01:18 PM
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Joako
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Brompton L5 vs 2008 Dahon Curve SL

Pictures comparing the folded and unfolded size of both bikes. The Brompton is a L5 with the shorter wheelbase and M type stem. It also seems that Dahon increased the 2009 Curve SL wheelbase.
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Old 12-29-09, 01:32 PM
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The Curve with an increased wheelbase can be a very strong competition to the entry level Bromptons.

I had a great time with mine, but now it is just a black and white (ok, and red) memory due to the clown oriented wheelbase. I went over my handlebars N times.

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Old 12-30-09, 12:05 AM
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A couple more Brompton meets Curve SL shots:





I'm pretty sure my 2009 Curve SL has a longer wheelbase than my old 2007 Curve SL - the ride quality is much improved. Not certain, but I think they may have changed the headtube angle a bit and added a longer front fork. Does anyone know for sure?

I think the new Curve SL is really an underrated compact folding bike. When everything is taken into account (price, ride, comfort, speed, components, folding size, ease of fold, weight, etc) it compares very favorably to the big 3, Birdy, Brompton, Tikit - and just might be better (all-around) then any of them.
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Old 12-30-09, 12:15 AM
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Curve SL 2009



Curve SL 2007

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Old 12-30-09, 06:40 AM
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What was it about the curve that led to you going over the handlebars vs. any other bike?
Were the brakes too strong? Or was it bad luck?
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Old 12-30-09, 01:52 PM
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Originally Posted by owenfinn View Post

.....I think the new Curve SL is really an underrated compact folding bike. When everything is taken into account (price, ride, comfort, speed, components, folding size, ease of fold, weight, etc) it compares very favorably to the big 3, Birdy, Brompton, Tikit - and just might be better (all-around) then any of them.
I can't comment on the Birdy as I only seen one once and never had much to do with that particular bike. But the other 2 bikes listed above I can comment. I own a Brompton and now tikits are offered in the Los Angeles area which allows me some access to them. I own 2 Dahons presently too (a 2003 20" Boardwalk and a 2006 Piccolo-their predecessor to the Curve). I am in the smaller range of physical size so I am comfortable with the smaller wheeled folding bikes anyway. My observations:

The biggest thing about the differences between a Dahon bike and the others listed is the ability to replace a specialized part like it's folding hinges, and some other sundry parts. Dahon always strive to improve their bikes and I have to applaud them for that. This belief comes at a steep price for the customer if you don't buy a new Dahon every couple of years or so. Brompton does improve their bikes too but at a more conservative rate and the ability to be "backwards compatible" when the changes do take place. That means that the older Brompton could be fixed or upgraded whenever the need or whim arises at the customer end. Bike Friday also is "backwards compatible" which gives their customers the same options as Brompton does. Plus the bike's frame and fit is "customized" for the buyer. I imagine that longer or shorter wheelbases are a moot point as the bike is created for that particular person's needs.

I do and still see the major changes in the "feel" of the Dahon bikes I own when I compare the improvements between the 2003 and the 2006 models. But the lack of "backwards compatible" choices has changed where I will buy in the future. I only will consider Brompton or Bike Friday from now on as I usually do buy a bike to own & use for at least a decade-usually much longer that that. If I need a bike that will I own & use for no more than a couple of years, a Dahon will do just fine.

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Old 12-30-09, 02:05 PM
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FF...you cannot compare your entry level old generations of Dahon bikes with the newer ones.
And than its impossible to compare it to a different brand all together.

About the special parts ... and the steep price for the consumer .... again what is this constant Dahon bashing all about ?
If you dont like your Dahons .. its a free country ....sell them to somebody who will apreciate them and ride your Brommie and enjoy that.

Again like so many other times my question is .... what Dahon parts you are not getting which would make the bike unrideable.

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Old 12-30-09, 04:16 PM
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Thor,

I�ll bite. I have read the same comments over and over and have begun to wonder how easily I could obtain parts as my bike ages.

I have been using my Presto as my daily commuter for about 5 years now. I have replaced the crank, chain, rear wheel, and bottom bracket with generic parts with absolutely no compatibility issues. The following parts do concern me a bit:

1. Inside the handle post there is a little nylon (?) block. I have not had any problem yet, but if that does wear out or break can I get a replacement?
2. The entire handle post assembly seems a little flimsy compared to the newer posts. It is one of the first handlebar posts with the internal clamping mechanisms and uses a threaded headset. Can I still find a replacement handlebar post?
3. Main hinge parts. The hinge seems pretty rugged and doesn�t really worry me, but are there still replacement parts available should they become unserviceable?

Maybe other can jump in with the parts that concern them the most. I agree it�s time to test how concerned we should be about parts availability.

I appreciate you willingness to jump into these forums and participate.
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Old 12-30-09, 04:31 PM
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I agree with thor.

Again, both bikes have their own special parts. For example, both bike stems, front hubs, seatposts, and hinges. Anything besides that seems standard. You can even insert a 1 1/8 tubing in the Dahon handlepost assembly and use a threadless stem to increase the cockpit distance. For the Brompton you will need an Aber Hallo.
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Old 12-30-09, 10:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Tom808 View Post
Thor,

I�ll bite. I have read the same comments over and over and have begun to wonder how easily I could obtain parts as my bike ages.

I have been using my Presto as my daily commuter for about 5 years now. I have replaced the crank, chain, rear wheel, and bottom bracket with generic parts with absolutely no compatibility issues. The following parts do concern me a bit:

1. Inside the handle post there is a little nylon (?) block. I have not had any problem yet, but if that does wear out or break can I get a replacement?
2. The entire handle post assembly seems a little flimsy compared to the newer posts. It is one of the first handlebar posts with the internal clamping mechanisms and uses a threaded headset. Can I still find a replacement handlebar post?
3. Main hinge parts. The hinge seems pretty rugged and doesn�t really worry me, but are there still replacement parts available should they become unserviceable?

Maybe other can jump in with the parts that concern them the most. I agree it�s time to test how concerned we should be about parts availability.

I appreciate you willingness to jump into these forums and participate.
1. small white plastic piece .... there are two possibilities . Dahon has a complete bag conssiting of the plate, springs, allen bolts and white plastic thingy ... every dealer can order some . I have some in stock ...or you can email me and I will mail you a block alone ..usually at no charge
2.handlebar posts with internal wedge are available in 1 inch ( very old) and also 1 1 /8 diameter ... not all versions ever made are available, but a handlepost will be there to make the bike rideable .. in other words a 1/18 height adjustable post is hard to come by , but a non height adjustable is available That is only for forks with outside thread and regular headsets. If your fork has internal threads than its absolutely not a problem.
3. Hinge packs same as 1 are available from Dahon ..I have several different years in stock. But as you said they are hardly hot items to replace I think I sold 2 all last year
:-)
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Old 12-30-09, 11:34 PM
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Weirdly, the longer wheelbase Dahon Curve still seems to be using the old crappy stempost hinge latch. A puzzling lapse on an otherwise fantastic-looking piece of kit.

Can somebody please measure the wheelbase length, and the rear axle to BB distance?
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Old 12-31-09, 07:13 AM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by jur View Post
Weirdly, the longer wheelbase Dahon Curve still seems to be using the old crappy stempost hinge latch. A puzzling lapse on an otherwise fantastic-looking piece of kit.

Can somebody please measure the wheelbase length, and the rear axle to BB distance?
I measured the wheelbase at 995mm and rear axle to BB at 400mm.

The 2007 Curve SL, according to a Folding Society review, had a 960mm wheelbase.

A Brompton's wheelbase, I believe, is 1045mm.
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Old 12-31-09, 12:02 PM
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Originally Posted by brakemeister View Post
1. small white plastic piece .... there are two possibilities . Dahon has a complete bag conssiting of the plate, springs, allen bolts and white plastic thingy ... every dealer can order some . I have some in stock ...or you can email me and I will mail you a block alone ..usually at no charge
2.handlebar posts with internal wedge are available in 1 inch ( very old) and also 1 1 /8 diameter ... not all versions ever made are available, but a handlepost will be there to make the bike rideable .. in other words a 1/18 height adjustable post is hard to come by , but a non height adjustable is available That is only for forks with outside thread and regular headsets. If your fork has internal threads than its absolutely not a problem.
3. Hinge packs same as 1 are available from Dahon ..I have several different years in stock. But as you said they are hardly hot items to replace I think I sold 2 all last year
:-)
Thor
Thanks for the quick response. I will check in with my LBS regarding the handle post kit. I think I might pick one up and throw it into my parts bin. I imagine that they might be come scarce in the future.

Otherwise, it seems a reasonable level of support a five year old bicycle. Makes me wonder what type of support folks expect (and are willing to pay for).

Thanks again.
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Old 12-31-09, 01:02 PM
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Otherwise, it seems a reasonable level of support a five year old bicycle. Makes me wonder what type of support folks expect (and are willing to pay for).
In the computer industry there are laws which require that certain hardware products be supported for seven years through parts. As computer hardware quickly becomes obsolete, this would seem to be a minimum standard. Bikes, which last far longer and undergo obsolescence at a much slower rate, should be supported far longer. They're not fast-disposable items.

Surely Dahon stands by its earlier bikes. I have no doubt that they do.
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Old 12-31-09, 08:51 PM
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Still bashing Dahons, FF? You always raise your anti-Dahon points at every opportunity. I thought Thor offered to help you out with parts long ago, so your problem is still unresolved? How did you get to the conclusion that Dahons are good for 2 years only? And when you say that you waste nothing in your house, you imply that getting a Dahon is a waste? So why get another Dahon for your sister if you don't like Dahons at all? And about your Boardwalk, how did you arrive to the conclusion that its aluminum parts are approaching its replacement time?
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Old 12-31-09, 10:05 PM
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I never found out what parts she needed. I am easy to find but thats ok too.
expiration date on aluminum parts ... on a Dahon ?
What expiration dates on that " other" bike .....I wonder. Or is it all steel ( which last forever ..I assume )

its getting old

happy new year
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Old 01-02-10, 01:47 AM
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I for one am glad not to have to attend FF and Family of FF's New Year Celebrations. They must have lots of long rambling speeches on each other's doings. Not to mention having to spend all that time online to read each others' forum interests over years.

I also do not log on under assumed names and make long rambling posts.
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Old 01-02-10, 08:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Family Of FF View Post
Her Dahon dealer has already inform her that the (similar parts to the Brompton's) cannot be ordered as they are no longer made for the years 2003 or 2006 bikes she has. While she will continue to use her bikes she is very aware through her Brompton manual https://clients.squareeye.com/uploads...lus%20pics.pdf Page 27 Section K-Routine Replacements. I (her sister) already told her that she could have that aluminum frame hinge replace if she chooses to do so by going to a machine shop and making a steel one. She chooses not to as the bike is simply not worth it to restore (I agree). I did warn her that people only read what they want to read and filter out the rest online.
Yeah it is amazing how people believe what they want while filtering out the facts. Obviously your local Dahon dealer is misinformed. Thor has offered many times to provide whatever parts you need, yet for years now you continue to go on and on about how Dahon parts aren't available.

This isn't a problem with Dahon or with aluminum or with computer blimps or with whatever other scapegoat you want to blame it on. It's a problem with your LBS being either lazy of incompetent, so find a new LBS and get over it.

As to Brompton, they are following a familiar path: As their suppliers die one by one they are forced to built more and more parts in house. So if history is any indicator then it won't be long before the burden of building the hundreds of esoteric parts drives them out of business. So I wouldn't necessarily consider them a solution for one concerned about part obsolescence with Dahons.
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Old 01-02-10, 10:19 AM
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As to Brompton, they are following a familiar path: As their suppliers die one by one they are forced to built more and more parts in house. So if history is any indicator then it won't be long before the burden of building the hundreds of esoteric parts drives them out of business.
Assuming that were true, I'd think it were good, not bad: a great many custom Brompton parts not requirements of the design. They're lock-in by the company. If the burden increased, it'd force Brompton to go with more standard stuff.
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Old 01-02-10, 11:12 AM
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I do admit that I left my computer on while I was away with friends. It seems my well intentioned family decided to "help" me and chime in while I kept my computer on on their own log in username so they can see my online activities. I am not bothering to dignify a nice retort. I am who I am and family comes first & no one messes with them. For the parties that need to know-I used my Boardwalk during my New Years celebrations. No one outside of cyberspace cared about the bike, including my friends. They wanted to see me, not it. I will not be using the Dahons, the Brompton, or any other bike for a long time after next Tuesday. I already placed the Dahons in storage and after Monday the Brompton will follow. I am going into surgery and expect to be off my feet and limited use even the telephone for most of the week. After that, I am going to and feel more free to do some more paid work online. No more freebies here or wasting my time "volunteering" anymore-except maybe an occasionall Foo visit as it is rather fun & lighthearted there still. For interest parties, I will opt to keep the Websites online for now as they are already there. After that, pay me for my time.

One more thing, I do agree with other's observations. Where are the older posters, like mulleady, that once posted here? It seems I have some unintentioned answers by some replies that has nothing to do with folding bikes right here.

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Old 01-02-10, 11:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Family Of FF View Post
We wish to introduce ourselves. We are some of Folder Fanatic family members. She herself is offline now and is not part of this discussion at this time (She is at present celebrating the New Year with her offline and real true friends of many years, not computer blimps). One of us (her brother) was reading her posts on this thread as he is very interested in her online Website series developments. He is not pleased with the tone that this topic has taken. He does believe that everyone has the right for their own opinions and our father was very involved with the 1960s civil right movement in his work place (what is now known as the US Postal Service, then as the Post Office). But this is not what we were raised to believe or expect from others. We will comment on the following:



Our FF, as you know her as, may not have the intense mechanical training (the sister she wants to buy the bike for is a Mechanical Engineer with 20+ years in the Aerospace industry) or graduated from the same college that our US President attended (her brother), but she always knows what she wants and how to research for it-and is not afraid to ask or learn from her mistakes (although in this case, under the circumstances of the initial Boardwalk's purchase, she decided to "take a chance" with a bike she did not test ride as is her habit). Because Dahon had it's global headquarters a bike ride distance from her residence, she assumed that parts for the folding mechanism could be easily had (after a couple of years, not so). Plus she needed a bike that folds right away for visiting our still living father to take care of the emergencies as they arrive-to free us to work in our respective fields. Her sacrifice of her own career in both Sociology and Education for us is noted and appreciated by us. We don't expect too much from computer blimps to understand this.



She has received her parts for her Brompton with ease with the option from ordering from many different sources from all around the US. Her Dahon dealer has already inform her that the (similar parts to the Brompton's) cannot be ordered as they are no longer made for the years 2003 or 2006 bikes she has. While she will continue to use her bikes she is very aware through her Brompton manual https://clients.squareeye.com/uploads...lus%20pics.pdf Page 27 Section K-Routine Replacements. I (her sister) already told her that she could have that aluminum frame hinge replace if she chooses to do so by going to a machine shop and making a steel one. She chooses not to as the bike is simply not worth it to restore (I agree). I did warn her that people only read what they want to read and filter out the rest online. Here is a very good case (this is more in her field than mine). Aluminum has a finite life and should be replace well before failure. That previous idea falls within own field.



Actually she is simply being honest about her experiences with these bikes. If you read her previous post (or her own Website series as she archives them there) she simply is detailing her 6 years with Dahon, both good and bad. 2 years is about right when she noticed (too late I guess) that her own Dahon dealer broke the news to her and her own observations about the vast differences the frame latches and other folding devices even between her 2003 and the 2004 models and more so every year! It does not take an Engineering degree to know planned obsolescence in the form of "improvements' or some other bull**** being sold nowadays to people. She decided to get a Dahon for me as I am quite hard on bikes as my riding style is the opposite of her's. She does not have much money and she wanted me not to worry about the bike as theft is real big around here (right down the street from a bike thief). I told her not to worry or bother as I don't care to own or even use a bike like that and especially with the type of following that seems to be drawn to these bikes. If it was not for all the problems here in Los Angeles over unreported crime, I think she would still be very happy on her original bike:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/world-o...7594461421431/ She told me once that if things was not so crazy, she would still have Her Phillips still and perhaps in the future bought just 1 folding bike-the Brompton-for traveling. The Phillips would be worth going to the machine shop for replacement parts. But she and the rest of her family must deal with future probable trouble, and that is what our father's sole reason when he bought the Dahon Boardwalk.




We would like to end this conversation with an a few observations of our own. We know that Thor-we agree with him that this is getting rather old-is in the bike business-namely Dahons. That is well and good, but not on the expense of our sister. We think this behavior is beneath us and we don't want our sister around this enviroment just to promote some sales off her back. We rather throw the bikes away. Or perhaps we will continue to exercise the option to continue patronize a particular bike shop close to Dahon HQ that she trusts and done business with in the recent past as you suggest it is a "free" country or such nonsense. It is not "free," but more aptly described as freer than most. Perhaps it is not as big or nice as yours, but she can get any available parts or another bike within a day as Dahon HQ is only around 5 miles away (easy biking distance plus no shipping costs) and one of the mechanics are very well versed in all things Dahon and treats her as a lady as she is. Apparently others feel similar about their own Dahon experiences: https://utilitycyclist.blogspot.com/2...1_archive.html in a rather negative way and no one takes them to task. We noticed a huge drop off of usernames like Nekohime, Puppypilgrim, werewolf, and yes even the famous Wayshrdr who seem to be no longer posting on this forum. We wish to add the direction of this particular forum has gone downhill over the last several months by just scanning the past pages that no one seems to bother to read anymore. We are not surprised at all.

But we are raised properly. So on behalf of our sister, we wish all a very happy New Year. And note that we consider the matter closed.
FF is that you? Happy New Year!
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Old 01-02-10, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Joako View Post
Pictures comparing the folded and unfolded size of both bikes. The Brompton is a L5 with the shorter wheelbase and M type stem. It also seems that Dahon increased the 2009 Curve SL wheelbase.
I liked the original Curve SL with the 8 speed hub and came close to buying one over my Brompton 3 speed. The extra gears were smooth as butter and as another posted stated, a very underrated bike. However, I really wanted the Brompton this time around after all these years just decided to buy one. I still have my two Dahons, both working very well.

Now that the Curve has a derailluer, I have no desire in getting an SL. I suspect Dahon dropped the Nexus Red Band 8 speed to keep the price below $1,200.00 US dollars.
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Old 01-02-10, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by brakemeister View Post
...what Dahon parts you are not getting which would make the bike unrideable.
This is a very careful choice of words Thor. ;-)

How about replacing 'unrideable' with 'not meeting the original spec' ?

Dahon brag about their features but when you try to get spare parts they discount them as unnecessary bells and whistles. This does not reflect well on the company and it support organization.

Here is an example: from https://www.dahon.com/intl/glidep8.htm "Fully equipped for city commuting – the brake levers even have an integrated bell.". Are they available as spare parts?

Happy new year.

Kam

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Old 01-02-10, 01:59 PM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by kamtsa View Post
This is a very careful choice of words Thor. ;-)

How about replacing 'unrideable' with 'not meeting the original spec' ?

Dahon brag about their features but when you try to get spare parts they discount them as unnecessary bells and whistles. This does not project well on the company and it support organization.

Here is an example: from https://www.dahon.com/intl/glidep8.htm "Fully equipped for city commuting – the brake levers even have an integrated bell.". Are they available as spare parts?

Happy new year.

Kam
sure ... how many you need ?
Its a Lee Chi brake lever or sumpin like that. I dont like it but I could order direct from the manufacturer. Or have Dahon send me a few from overseas. Most likely Dahon in US has a few as well. But I havent heard anybody asking for one. Most elegant solution which really works is to replace that silly bell with a real bell and forget about the little ringading on top of the brake lever . But If you need one contact me offline and I will get you one.

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Old 01-02-10, 02:04 PM
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more important
if somebody needs a new hinge ... contact me offline , send me a pic of your hinge and a description of your bike ( what year and such ) and I will either have the exact replacement in stock OR I will get the original replacement from Dahon. Absolutely no problem whatsoever

I dont stock hundreds of different ones, as I sold 2 the entire last year and one of them was for somebody who wanted a replacement JUST IN CASE his would fail. Ia m sure that one is residing in some box somewhere and will never been used ... buts thats ok too

Thor

negative comments .... well there is nothing bad about posting bad reviews or statements,

however :
1. they better be substantiated and are not vaguely opinions with no merit or worse are based entirely of hearsay
2. negative comments may as well influences somebodies lifely hood.
3.Some comments are in stark contrast to many many happy owners. No surprise that there is at least some clarification needed from other forum users, who dont have a similar experience.
4. calling forum members Gimps does nothing more than to out themselves as being not quite mature yet
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