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Swift folders

Old 03-11-08, 10:24 AM
  #1451  
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Originally Posted by willfcc
That's what he told me about 4 years ago.

<:-O

But they are selling a steel Swift in Eugene -

https://www.catoregon.org/hpm/swift.htm

I'm a bit confused about that.
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Old 03-11-08, 12:14 PM
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I'm refering to the "new" frame with the "bent" seat tube. I was looking at buying a Swift about 4 years ago, and at the time, Peter was out of frames, and the new "bent" version was being designed. I held off ordering, waiting for the new design. I even made a drawing of his description of the design, and he confirmed that it was what he was doing.
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Old 03-11-08, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by werewolf
<:-O

But they are selling a steel Swift in Eugene -

https://www.catoregon.org/hpm/swift.htm

I'm a bit confused about that.
When Peter first conceived the Swift, he needed to work with a more experienced bicycle builder. That was Jan Vander Tuin of CAT. After the design was developed, Peter had the steel Swifts made in batches of 50 or so, and sold framesets or built bikes either standard or to spec.

The folks at CAT have built (and continue to build) Swifts one at a time, to order and by hand. You'll have to wait a few months to get a bike from CAT, and it will be slightly different from Peter's.

CAT mostly specializes in utility trikes and delivery cycles and such, and I think the Swift has stayed in their catalog mostly as a sideline.

You can probably think of Peter as the East Coast distributor and CAT as the West Coast distributor. That said, Peter certainly sold many more of the mass produced Swifts than CAT has one-offs.

That is probably a fairly good concise history of Swift Folders prior to Xootr.

I live in Portland, Oregon and got my Swift as a frameset from Peter in 2003.

If it had disk tabs on the fork (an option you can get from CAT) it would be my PERFECT bike. As is, it is merely very close...
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Old 03-11-08, 03:24 PM
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I was looking at the swift, they list the folded size as 21.5" X 10"X 30" Is that accurate? Just looking at the picture of it folded and knowing the tires are 20" the folded size seems wildly optimistic. Otherwise it would be one of the smallest folds. Has anyone packed it in a samsonite oyster? If so please tell what needs to be removed. I use fenders and racks also.
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Old 03-11-08, 05:45 PM
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Those numbers do not sound right to me. The Swift definitely has one of the bulkier folds, although it is skinnier than most. E.g. the Dahons and Downtubes fold in half, so they're quite wide.

The Swift will fit into a 31" F'Lite hard case. I remove the wheels, handlebar, seat post. Some people will also remove the rear triangle. It's not the most efficient fold, nor have I found it ideal for loaded touring -- it's perfectly fine for a week or so, though.

Instructions are here: https://www.xootr.com/xootr/swift/packing.shtml
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Old 03-11-08, 08:33 PM
  #1456  
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Originally Posted by cmcanulty
I was looking at the swift, they list the folded size as 21.5" X 10"X 30" Is that accurate? Just looking at the picture of it folded and knowing the tires are 20" the folded size seems wildly optimistic. Otherwise it would be one of the smallest folds. Has anyone packed it in a samsonite oyster? If so please tell what needs to be removed. I use fenders and racks also.
https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...t=#post3956301

Post #10 shows photos. I travel frequently with my single speed Swift. My wife's new Dual-drive Swift takes a bit more fidgeting, but it also fits in an Oyster. For me, in my experience, it's less an issue of meeting the airlines spec than being able to take the first available taxi at my destination. Arriving with larger hard cases often means waiting for a MUCH larger taxi at a MUCH higher price.
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Old 03-11-08, 08:40 PM
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Rack and bike

Oh yeah. I take a rack sometimes, but think that best goes into a second bag, maybe with the rest of the clothes and gear. Everything is a compromise. Perhaps the bigger F'lite bag would accommodate the rack, but I have paid for a Suburban (big SUV) taxi before and it isn't cheap. I'd still take two moderate-sized bags rather than one big bag. Just my experience and opinion. I have to to do the same with my coupled 29er. The fork and rack are better off in a duffle with the rest of my stuff, rather than making the main hard case a real puzzle-pack for TSA. Experience (several mashed parts) has taught me.
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Old 03-12-08, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by Bop
Oh yeah. I take a rack sometimes, but think that best goes into a second bag, maybe with the rest of the clothes and gear....
Just to clarify, this is what I've fit into the F'Lite for one-week trips: bike, helmet, tools, some spare parts, rack. I then carry on two small panniers and a handlebar bag.

It all fits, the real issue is keeping the whole package under 50 lbs. If it's over 50 lbs, you'll either have to take stuff out or pay a fee.

Unfortunately I heard this week that US Airways will soon charge for a 2nd check-in item o_O (https://www.marketwatch.com/news/stor...DE5E7ACEC6F%7D). Consider yourself warned....
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Old 03-12-08, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by willfcc
I'm refering to the "new" frame with the "bent" seat tube. I was looking at buying a Swift about 4 years ago, and at the time, Peter was out of frames, and the new "bent" version was being designed. I held off ordering, waiting for the new design. I even made a drawing of his description of the design, and he confirmed that it was what he was doing.
Do you have any ideas on how you think the new steel frame will compare with the current aluminum Swift? Also, how does the Eugene steel frame compare to it?
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Old 03-12-08, 09:59 AM
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Patrick - Thanks for the brief history! Also, same question I just asked Will.
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Old 03-12-08, 10:04 AM
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No idea if CAT will build the new version...
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Old 03-12-08, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by willfcc
No idea if CAT will build the new version...
I mean the new steel version that Peter will be selling in the future.
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Old 03-12-08, 01:24 PM
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Originally Posted by werewolf
I mean the new steel version that Peter will be selling in the future.
I think it is a pretty safe bet that CAT WON'T be offering the new Swift. I believe the new design is pretty much all Peter's. He and Jan worked together on the original, but I don't think they have really worked together since. No bad blood or anything; it is just that the partnership was really only about perfecting the first design.

CAT will probably continue to build the original version, one at a time, by order. So when (if?!) Peter gets the Swallowtail out, there will be three different versions about.

A little update on Swift History, which I found by digging back thru ancient (2003, when I ordered my frame) emails: Jan and Peter prototyped the Swift, and then Jan built the first 60 frames 5 at a time. After that, Peter had the frames done by a builder in Linden, NJ, 50 at a time. As of May, 2003, there were about 300 Swifts in the world: 62 built by Jan initially, 200 built in Linden, and the one-offs that CAT had built since the introduction (maybe a couple dozen). I know Peter did at least a couple more runs of steel frames after that, so there were maybe between 400 and 500 prior to Xootr.

I thought about getting an aluminum frame from Peter after the introduction of the Xootr, but I am a 220 pound clydesdale who rides singlespeed and fixed gear on Portland's hills, and I have trust issues with aluminum frames!
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Old 03-12-08, 02:25 PM
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hey Patrick, thanks for the history on the Swift and Peter....I just received and built up my swift several days ago...nice nice nice, I like very much

I picked up a 80's dahon folder off of craigs for 25.00 for an introduction to folders, and damn!!! the Swift is light years ahead in ride quality and feel

I am hooked on folders

If the new one is 1/10th of what is out now, I will be very impressed

Last edited by doco; 03-12-08 at 07:04 PM.
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Old 03-12-08, 04:37 PM
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Originally Posted by doco
... and damn the Swift light years ahead...
I'm guessing you meant deem, here, doco! <grin>
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Old 03-12-08, 07:05 PM
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Originally Posted by -patrick
I'm guessing you meant deem, here, doco! <grin>
whoops
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Old 03-12-08, 10:27 PM
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You're the Swift historian, Patrick! What advantage is Peter's steel frame supposed to have over the current Swift, aside from steel vs. Al? I think it's supposed to fold up a trifle smaller. Anything else?


I thought about getting an aluminum frame from Peter after the introduction of the Xootr, but I am a 220 pound clydesdale who rides singlespeed and fixed gear on Portland's hills, and I have trust issues with aluminum frames!

I'm even bigger than you, and likewise mistrustful of aluminum - tho aluminum DC-3's have been flying since the 1930's. I just got my Swift. Actually, I just got it for the second time. I had to mail back the first one due to a defective frame. By way of apology, Peter said that he will exchange it for the steel frame when it comes out.
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Old 03-12-08, 11:14 PM
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Originally Posted by werewolf
You're the Swift historian, Patrick! What advantage is Peter's steel frame supposed to have over the current Swift, aside from steel vs. Al? I think it's supposed to fold up a trifle smaller. Anything else?
The history is really just from Peter - we exchanged a series of emails in late 2002/early 2003, and what I've relayed is what he told me, more or less. Any inaccuracies are my own; please don't hold Peter to anything I've said!

The new frame (Peter called it the Swift Swallowtail once upon a time - don't know if he still does) is supposed to fold slightly smaller, but is mostly about packing into the airlines' maximum allowed size suitcase, in my understanding. Not sure there will be a big advantage for day-to-day use.

So really the only reasons to wait on it are: you're planning to fly with it, or you want steel.

And, oh yeah: It looks sharp!

But what I really dream about: A full titanium Swift with disk mounts!
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Old 04-03-08, 09:38 PM
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Rather than start a new thread, I thought I'd give this old thread a bump with a question.

I have 2 Xootr Swifts, one from early 2006 and one from late 2007. The problem is that the seatpost on the 2007 Swift slips while I'm riding (my older Swift is perfectly solid in that department). Upon close examination, it appears that the seat tube on my newer Swift is thicker than on the old (I guess to make the frame stronger?), so I'm thinking that the quick release clamps may not be strong enough to compress the seat tube tight enough around the seatpost to hold it in place. I have the quick release clamps ratcheted pretty tight (much tighter than on the 2006 Swift, for instance), I have tried wiping the seat tube and seat post clean, I have even tried using lanolin (which is sticky) on the seatpost, but so far I have had no luck preventing the seatpost from slipping. It gets pretty annoying to have to stop from time to time to readjust the height of the seat.

Have other folks had problems along these lines? If so, how did you fix the problem?

Thanks!
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Old 04-03-08, 10:24 PM
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Ask Peter Reich (via Xootr) for a slightly thicker seatpost. This issue may lead the frame to crack at the clamp.
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Old 04-04-08, 04:23 PM
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Originally Posted by -patrick
A little update on Swift History, which I found by digging back thru ancient (2003, when I ordered my frame) emails: Jan and Peter prototyped the Swift, and then Jan built the first 60 frames 5 at a time. After that, Peter had the frames done by a builder in Linden, NJ, 50 at a time. As of May, 2003, there were about 300 Swifts in the world: 62 built by Jan initially, 200 built in Linden, and the one-offs that CAT had built since the introduction (maybe a couple dozen). I know Peter did at least a couple more runs of steel frames after that, so there were maybe between 400 and 500 prior to Xootr.
From what Peter related to me (also via email), there were 63 (don't know if this is exact or approximate) early Swifts build out in Oregon by Jan. I'm the proud owner of yet-to-be cleaned-up #25 from the subsequent Linden/East Coast batch.
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Old 04-04-08, 07:54 PM
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I have 2 Xootr Swifts, one from early 2006 and one from late 2007. The problem is that the seatpost on the 2007 Swift slips while I'm riding (my older Swift is perfectly solid in that department). Upon close examination, it appears that the seat tube on my newer Swift is thicker than on the old (I guess to make the frame stronger?), so I'm thinking that the quick release clamps may not be strong enough to compress the seat tube tight enough around the seatpost to hold it in place. I have the quick release clamps ratcheted pretty tight (much tighter than on the 2006 Swift, for instance), I have tried wiping the seat tube and seat post clean, I have even tried using lanolin (which is sticky) on the seatpost, but so far I have had no luck preventing the seatpost from slipping. It gets pretty annoying to have to stop from time to time to readjust the height of the seat.

Have other folks had problems along these lines? If so, how did you fix the problem
=============================
Hey dubes, I don't know if this will help, it would be easier with pics but I don't have a camera

I had a slipping post problem on a ti track frame I purchased last year. The post kept slipping and I tried everything from having lbs knurl(roughen) post to griitty grease to new stronger mtb 6mm seatpost binder bolts....ok all 3-4 fixes stopped the slipping 99% but it was still slipping..

so I took an old junk spacer that slid over the post slightly, hacksawed a piece out it it...slid the cut ring over the sliding post and took a clamp and tightened the clamp-spacer setup right where I wanted the seatpost to stay put....

then I tightened the binder bolt and no more slipping happy happy


ok so I just got a swift several weeks ago and I had a clamp off of a dahon that slid over the seatpost on the swift, and I put in post where I wanted it, clamped the sleeve, and then the 2 quick releases...no more slipping

I hope this make sense, if you have a newer post, get a 35mm seatpost clamp..I have a 35mm salsa lip lock, and I took a dremel and reomved the tiny lip around the top of the clamp and slid it on the swift post, clamped it where I wanted the post to stay

easy, cheap fix and your post won't slip
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Old 04-05-08, 07:50 PM
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Originally Posted by doco
Hey dubes, I don't know if this will help, it would be easier with pics but I don't have a camera

I had a slipping post problem on a ti track frame I purchased last year. The post kept slipping and I tried everything from having lbs knurl(roughen) post to griitty grease to new stronger mtb 6mm seatpost binder bolts....ok all 3-4 fixes stopped the slipping 99% but it was still slipping..

so I took an old junk spacer that slid over the post slightly, hacksawed a piece out it it...slid the cut ring over the sliding post and took a clamp and tightened the clamp-spacer setup right where I wanted the seatpost to stay put....

then I tightened the binder bolt and no more slipping happy happy


ok so I just got a swift several weeks ago and I had a clamp off of a dahon that slid over the seatpost on the swift, and I put in post where I wanted it, clamped the sleeve, and then the 2 quick releases...no more slipping

I hope this make sense, if you have a newer post, get a 35mm seatpost clamp..I have a 35mm salsa lip lock, and I took a dremel and reomved the tiny lip around the top of the clamp and slid it on the swift post, clamped it where I wanted the post to stay

easy, cheap fix and your post won't slip
doco, thanks for the suggestion. If all else fails, I may give it a go, though it sounds like it would make folding the Swift a bit of a pain. In the meantime, I have reached out to the folks at Xootr for help. From talking with them, it's apparent that the slipping seatpost is not a common problem for the new Swifts.
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Old 04-05-08, 08:57 PM
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nope, doesn't bother the fold at all

in fact it makes the fold easier to do, and keeps the post from slipping

and the post is always automatically at the correct height

and you don't have to really tighten the quick releases, just keep them snug
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Old 04-07-08, 07:24 PM
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Originally Posted by doco
I have 2 Xootr Swifts, one from early 2006 and one from late 2007. The problem is that the seatpost on the 2007 Swift slips while I'm riding (my older Swift is perfectly solid in that
I don't have a slipping problem, but I've noticed that when I undo the top quick release on my 2007, the bottom one does _not_ hold the post hardly at all.

To others: Should the bottom hold the seat tube as one might expect?
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