Brompton Folding Bicycles

Stumpalump

Expedition Leader
#1
Has anybody ever ridden one of the little 20' folding bikes? They make them from $129 up to $5000 carbon fiber ones. Thought it might be nice to have on light excursions when I don't want to haul a full size bike. Any experiance with them or are they a joke?

** Update. Bought a Brompton!*

*Update again..BIKE I BOUGHT WAS STOLEN AND RETURNED TO ORIGINAL OWNER. ** see page 3
 
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#2
Only a little bit of personal experience. I've never owned one, but have tried some. Just like a normal bike, you can get a cheap one or a nice one and you more or less get what you pay for.
The one's that I like most (and most expensive) out of the ones that I have tried are the Brompton bikes. The others were cheaper brands that didn't fold as small or ride as well.
 

calicamper

Expedition Leader
#3
The Ebike stuff is hitting the folding bikes right now. If your thinking transportation at camp etc you might like the ebike options. Pricy as heck though.
 

southpier

Expedition Leader
#5
regardless of the brand or cost, please consider "the ride" with a small diameter wheel. dips & pits in the road which a larger wheel will roll right over become a major hurdle for a 16"er.

the first contractor who had the courage to hire me (1970) was a private plane pilot. he and his wife had two folders that went into the Piper and when they got to the end of their flight, out came the bikes for a toodle on the tarmac - and beyond!
 
#6
Lots of skins to that "onion". First off what are your parameters for a bike (Not that I know squat about bikes). Do you want to bring it on a commercial flight into Santiago Chile, and ride to Patagonia... Or fly in on your Gulfstream to "John Wayne" and pedal for burgers to the Balboa pier at Ruby's, OR visit the RADS down in Laguna on any Wednesday night for a "refresher course" in recovering from "compression sickness"!

My suggestion is that you define what your riding style & travel style is... Then you develop your hardware around it
Sage advice and pretty much what I’d say as an avid cyclist that logs over 400 hours each year while working a full time job.

Since you asked about the bike, I’m guessing you wouldn’t call yourself a cyclist?

While I’ve seen plenty folding bikes and have read many vigorous defenses in their favor, compromises others mentioned about small wheel diameter keep me away. I just had a bike built with S&S couplers so that I can fit it into a suitcase and avoid overweight or oversized bag fees when flying. That is less of a ride performance compromise compared to finding, but more expensive and way more cumbersome to break down.


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#9
Rad Mini

Check out the Rad Mini. It is an e-bike. I have 300 miles on mine with 100 miles off pavement. No problems and rides great, perfect for an old timer.
 

Stumpalump

Expedition Leader
#10
Lots of skins to that "onion". First off what are your parameters for a bike

My suggestion is that you define what your riding style & travel style is... Then you develop your hardware around it
I'm collecting gear to do the inside passage and the American Great Loop. Those are boat trips and I'm going to do it in a smaller than adverage cruiser. Once at marinas or port towns I may need to ride into town for provitions, dentist or just to see the area. I'd like a back up to Uber or avoid using them. Hauling light provitions or worst case a 20L MFC or engine starter on my back. Some bring full size bikes but can also carry large yaught tenders. I'm just finishing a resto on a 1968 Evinrude 3hp to go on a 7-8' dingy yacht tender because that's all I'll have room for. A folding bike in it will get me all the way into town from a morning boey or anchor. I'm 6'2 and can ride but not sure if it's worth my effort to haul one over walking, Uber or hitchhiking if they are a useless toy.
 

Stumpalump

Expedition Leader
#13
Check out Bromptons.
https://www.nycewheels.com/folding-...w71U14a7IIZvFSOfzYojJuuPK8L_oGpxoCqpYQAvD_BwE

Probably one of the best made and people have toured extensively with them. They fold up into one of the smallest packages -- we carry two in the back of our Tacoma access cab and there is plenty of room left for other gear.
That seems like the best one for me. I'm going to skip the Camping World brands and find one of these. There seems to be quite a following, they are good for tall guys and mods are endless. Used value/price is near new. Let me know if you come across any.
 

Stumpalump

Expedition Leader
#14
A Brompton popped up today on eBay for 854.95 It was listed all wrong but was at a local pawn shop so I decided check it out. 2016 year model 6 speed Titanium with extra titanium bits like clamps and such. They "say" the titanium fork and rear triangle saves two pounds but more importantly adds springy bump absorbtion. IDK much about titanium bike parts? It has a Son Dynamo hub, lights and a rear rack with bigger wheels for rolling it while folded. Upgrades are in frame tool kit, removable pedals, seat and the extra titanium bits. I guess the removable pedals make it fold smaller or as an anti theft devise???
So far so good. Everthing works and it's super easy to ride. Glad to own it! Wheelies like crazy until you come down on the tiny 16" wheel. Pics are from eBay. The paint is called raw lacquer. It just a clear coat to show the nifty bronze hand welds on the frame. What do you think?

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