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Most Rugged Folding Bike

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Most Rugged Folding Bike

Old 03-17-15, 05:39 PM
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Rivle
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Most Rugged Folding Bike

I'm curious about which folding bike would be the best for rough terrain. I realize that there are no "stunt" folders, but I have heard of people taking them off-road, and the streets in some cities are much worse than many off-road trails.
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Old 03-17-15, 06:24 PM
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The Bike Friday 'Pocket Llama' bikes are specifically designed for off-road use and they also have a model for heavier riders:
https://www.bikefriday.com/bicycles/mountain
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Old 03-17-15, 08:23 PM
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Originally Posted by Rivle View Post
I'm curious about which folding bike would be the best for rough terrain. I realize that there are no "stunt" folders, but I have heard of people taking them off-road, and the streets in some cities are much worse than many off-road trails.
There's at least one Youtube video of guys doing BMX style stunts on Bromptons.
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Old 03-17-15, 11:15 PM
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Tern's offering: Tern Verge S27h folding touring bicycle ? A gravel-road-touring review - 14degrees Off The Beaten Track .
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Old 03-17-15, 11:39 PM
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Check out the work that this guy has done on his Dahon Jetstream: DEBCAR Story

I would second the Bike Friday Pocket Llama though as nice and tough out of the box
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Old 03-18-15, 04:04 AM
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There used to be a few 26" folding bikes. I think they just fold in half and don't get real small, but they might be handy for certain situations.

If you just need the occasional compacting the bike, also consider S&S Couplers which can be installed on many different types of frames (with round tubes?)
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Old 03-18-15, 05:24 AM
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Montague bikes, the old Bi-frame seemed to be particularly rugged.
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Old 03-18-15, 06:52 AM
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There is one stunt folding bike. Ok it doesnt fold, but its compactable. Onza mini is perfectly cablable for jumps 360s,hops, etc. However it comes with fragile folding pedals,and a big sprung seat as standard. Strange choice of finishing kit for a major trail bike manufacturer . However, it is a mini bike so its difficult to do many stunts wih the short wheel base. Fun trying and possibly one of the coolist bikes amounst children and teenagers at garden parties etc.

Breaking an Onza mini would be either an inpressive or stupid achievement of note.

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Old 03-18-15, 10:46 AM
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Tern Joe,...or a Montague military styled folder. And a Xootr Swift.
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Old 03-18-15, 02:05 PM
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Is there a 20" folder more durable than our 9FS? I don't think so.

FYI I've mountain biked with it on treacherous terrain. And hauled 2 kids on it...total weight 340lb ( I was 220 and the kids were 60 each )

Thanks
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Old 03-18-15, 03:08 PM
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I used to take my daughter to dance classes with her sitting on the downtube NS8 rack!

Yes yan they are defiantly solid bikes.
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Old 03-18-15, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by dorkypants View Post
There's at least one Youtube video of guys doing BMX style stunts on Bromptons.
I wouldn't call what Team Clonc does 'BMX stunts'. They're not catching serious air or doing long stairs.

Originally Posted by cpg View Post
Montague bikes, the old Bi-frame seemed to be particularly rugged.
The original Montagues were designed to be dropped with para-troupers,and then ridden through off-road conditions,so I'd give them the nod for toughest folder.
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Old 03-18-15, 11:15 PM
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Originally Posted by tds101 View Post
Tern Joe,...or a Montague military styled folder. And a Xootr Swift.
How would a Xootr Swift hold up to doing basic stunts? Jumps, stair-riding, wheelies, etc?
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Old 03-19-15, 07:46 AM
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Originally Posted by keyven View Post
How would a Xootr Swift hold up to doing basic stunts? Jumps, stair-riding, wheelies, etc?
I'm not sure. I've heard of people using it for light off road riding, but not hardcore or doing stunts. I'm 225lbs, and I rode it at 240lbs plus. I personally can't complain.
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Old 03-19-15, 09:07 AM
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I own a Heavy Rider Option Bike Friday Pocket Llama .. 406 - 47 tires 32 spoke wheels.
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Old 03-19-15, 10:45 AM
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Bike Friday makes off road capable bikes. Excellent quality!
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Old 03-19-15, 04:10 PM
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One reason why a bike could be rugged is the presence of suspension elements to absorb the impacts from landing. This reduces the stress on the frame by a big amount. Another reason for ruggedness would be a very strong frame such as a BMX.

I don't think the Swift is rugged at all in that sense. I would not be comfortable doing jumps and wheelies and stunts on it or on any other folding bike, except perhaps the BF Llama but I don't know that bike at all. I would not even trust the Montague because the frame rotating joint under the top tube sees a lot of stress concentrated on it, and besides the tyre there is no suspension element to absorb some of the impact that would be imparted to that joint. I have seen a failure reported on that joint, although it is not clear to me if that was a copy or genuine, but to me even the genuine article is not designed for jumping.

DEBCAR's account of his use of the Dahon Jetstream to do proper trail MTB riding, details all the failures he has experienced and how he fixed those failures over the years. And that is a full suspension bike. So not even that was up to regular MTB-style punishment. And no doubt it wasn't designed for that either. The full suspension in that case is small travel, a big difference from large travel suspension as on a dually.
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Old 03-19-15, 05:08 PM
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Originally Posted by fietsbob View Post
I own a Heavy Rider Option Bike Friday Pocket Llama .. 406 - 47 tires 32 spoke wheels.
Yeah,but it's the hinges and latches that are the weak spot in a folding bike.
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Old 03-19-15, 07:43 PM
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The Origami Mantis and Origami Cricket (currently out of stock) both offer full suspensions and rugged frames to handle rougher terrain.
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Old 03-20-15, 09:20 AM
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Birdy (German) is dual suspension too. https://www.birdybike.com/
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Old 03-20-15, 01:38 PM
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I'm not sure of anyone would take a birdy and use it as a off road vehicle though. The suspension is simple elastomer (no damping) and was really meant absorb potholes and road cracks instead of single track. the rear suspension travel is equivalent to 60mm and the front is only 30mm which pretty much shows that it's not meant for anything more than some gravel paths. Even that might be hard pressed with the 355 tire sizes which the best branded tire for it would be the slick kojak, it's doable but the ride would not be fun compared to a unsuspended mountain bike with 2+ inch wide fat tires which would glide over any gravel path.

I would have to agree with Jur here that no matter how amazingly welded the frame is, the overall weakpoint in the end is the hinges and latches which will take alot of the shock stress on a off road ride. gravel roads and smooth hardpack would be ok I think as long as you have the correct tire (wider) and not some skinnies else its just hard work as it sinks into gravel. Anything rougher like single track littered with rocks and tree roots and it'll just stop being fun on top of the smaller wheelsize trying to hop over obstacles.

In the end the OP will have to determine ahead of time how "rough" is the off road trails that he is thinking of taking his bike to and whether it would be doable. Light gravel or hardpack smooth dirt? sure go ahead! singletrack? ummm get a real mountain bike for that. Like many of the bike owners on here have that disease of n+1, I have my folder with good fast tires for commuting which is great and then a non folding mountain bike with big fatties (2.3" wide) for the crazy stuff which is a blast not having to worry about "drop offs"

Last edited by Azreal911; 03-20-15 at 01:42 PM.
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Old 03-20-15, 02:29 PM
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This is my choice.
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Old 03-20-15, 02:37 PM
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I use a birdie off road all the time. It depends what you mean by off road but I do a lot more than gravel paths. I do fields, woods, and rough ground. my birdies also been on single track mountain bike tracks at dolby forest.


It's a comfortable bike. The best road tyres are kojacks but 2" big apples fit front and back. There is quite a lot of front suspension travel but it's mainly horizontal due to the design. It's not as comfortable as a downtube fs at the back but about the same at the front.

I am not claiming the birdie to be the most rugged bike, just redressing the point that it's not an off road bike. It's not an extreme off road bike.

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Old 03-21-15, 09:01 AM
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The Raleigh 20 is very durable. I use mine on roads, trails and logging roads. I'm not stump jumping, just riding but it works so well I don't use a mountain bike.
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Old 03-22-15, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by cavalier View Post
The Raleigh 20 is very durable. I use mine on roads, trails and logging roads. I'm not stump jumping, just riding but it works so well I don't use a mountain bike.
I've read that the frame on the 20 is pretty solid. How do you have yours set up?
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