Folding Bikes because i'm not good at the clever names

I made an arbitrary rule in the Sundeal thread that that thread is specifically for non-folders and now I want to talk about folders and apparently we haven’t done that on nu-tarck yet.

okay foldering bicycles, why cant i shake this love

i once owned a Dahon Speed TR, which will always be the nerdiest bike I ever owned. dual racks, dyno hub front, 3-speed planetary gear SRAM hub + 8 speed cassette. seat tube doubled as a pump. it was like 45# and was liquidated for nothing when i needed to pay medical bills in 2014. very sad. it was so fucking heavy but boy, what a treat.

anywayz, now that i suddenly don’t have a small wheel bike I can’t stop thinking about going back to the folding game. the experience with the Dahon has me pretty concerned about weight over everything but also general folded footprint, which the Dahon had a relatively large one. for this reason, I think I’ve fallen for Brompton.

now, there are a lot of options with these little fuckers, but I’m unsure where to start. Honestly, I’m feeling an attraction to the bottom model, the B75. besides titanium v steel, the frames are all the same, right? it seems like going cheap model with the intention of upgrading the drivetrain to something more useful than the max 6 speeds Brompton offers might be the ticket (11 speed alfine?)

What’s the deal with the bags? the block mount seems cool, is there an aftermarket for that? can I fit this thing in carry-on luggage? Handlebar thoughts?

the closest Brompton shops opens in 20 minutes, I guess I should head over there.

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I am always keeping my eyes open for a 20-24" Klapprad over here. There seem to be many generics of the same basic style and when I see them locked up or getting pedalled around I imagine it as my city bike. This one is from the DDR

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Ryan, you should go see Ezra at Green Machine and get a dang Bike Friday!
He has some pretty outrageous builds hanging around last time I was in there.


Also, if you’re going to JC Lind, say hi to Kieth for me. That’s the dude who’s Brompton I rode (up and over Cricket Hill lol). He will absolutely talk you into buying one.
But I won’t. I didn’t like it. It felt like a toy in a bad way.


Unless they’ve changed drastically in the last ~10 years I wouldn’t count on upgrading much on the Brompton, especially in terms of gearing.

Like really, almost everything is proprietary / non-standard. I had to replace sup’s rear fender a few years ago and the parts were like 56EUR or something stupid.

When the 1-PIECE crankarm/chainring wore out I tried to fit a generic shimano Hollowtech road crank on it and couldn’t figure out the spacing to make it work. Ended up buying Brompton replacement parts.

New grips were either special Brompton size or cut-down others (which I did).

Brake levers need the cable to exit at a certain angle to work and still fold properly.

But sup loves it. :woman_shrugging:

IIRC the only people running Alfine hubs were doing frame mods. For example:

But they’re great! :slight_smile:

TC: I also rode this one for a year and then sold it to buy the blue bullitt:


now i’ve gone down a bike friday hole

big attraction to have dropbars and a normal fucking drivetrain!
what’s the downside to BF v Brompton? pricing is comparable, just doesnt appear to fold as small as a brompton

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I’d much rather have a BF. Mainly because I’d rather have 20" wheels and also the Haul-a-Day is awesome and you should get that.


Not a folding bike though. Just a bike that’s easy to disassemble.
It’s weird that they dont have any pictures of it packed up on the website.

It doesn’t get particularly small, but it’s the only longtail in the world that fits in the back of a Honda Fit, that’s for sure.


haul-a-day is definitely not on the mind rn but it is very cool!

maybe what i should do is just get a beat up old dahon and throw my katu parts on it for now, just see how much i actually use the foldy thing


you should get this

Goes great with small planes apparently.

Or this weirdass schwinn!

Bromptons do ride well, but the lengths that they had to go through with proprietary parts makes it not worth it IMO. Dahons are fine, Terns are fine, Bike Fridays are badass.

There are always loads of Bike Fridays on the secondhand market for pretty cheap, but people always seem to get weird sizes, and its impossible to tell unless you test ride.


Maybe also keep an eye out for a Swift Xootr?

Might help to think about what you want to priortize -final folded size? Speed of the fold? Standard parts interchangeability?

I’m assuming this is not for airline travel otherwise we’d be talking full-size takedown bikes too.


the Swift folder inventor guy had his workshop around the corner from the LBS I worked at, good bikes

Go for the weirdness?

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I had one of these and it was unpleasant to ride. On the plus side it was a good investment as I sold it for more than I paid for it (because some people are desperate for Moultons but don’t want to wait 2 years for one)

But it was certainly pretty, I mean look at this contraption

It also cast cool shadows


There was a Giant Halfway for sale locally last year, and I still wish I would have bought it. It’d be cool to have something designed by Mike Burrows, and I love the double-righty!