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Recommend me a folder that can...

dthom3ukdthom3uk Posts: 11
edited March 2012 in Commuting general
Cope with a 4 mile canal side commute on some uneven and gravel based surfaces.

I've ruled out a Brompton and have looked at:

http://www.evanscycles.com/products/dahon/mu-p8-2011-folding-bike-ec022574#

or

http://www.evanscycles.com/products/tern/link-p9-2012-folding-bike-ec032579

Any input will be welcome.

Thanks.

Posts

  • fnegronifnegroni Posts: 794
    I have the Dahon Mu P8.
    I would recommend you get the Tern P9 if that is what your budget allows. It will be far better.
    Both will cope fine provided you get the right tyres. They both come equipped as standard with Schwalbe Supreme 1.6". Which cope very well with uneven ground at lower pressure and will be just fine.
    If you want more cushioning you can fit the fat Schwalbe Big Apple 2.0": keep the pressure even lower, and it will be light having a small amount of suspension. Both bikes come equipped with an integrated seat post floor pump so you can play about with inflation pressures on the move whenever you like. I have used that seat post pump to inflate my racer's tyres a couple of times to 120psi and it was quick and effortless.
    If you don't need such a compact folder, a 24" Tern Eclipse, while more expensive, will give even better handling at the expense of a slightly bigger folded package.
  • hambohambo Posts: 49
    Any reason you need a foldable bike in particular? i.e. will you need to take it on bus or train, or is your commute part car and part bike.

    If your commute means not having to go on public transport with it then you could look at full sized folding bikes from Montague. I have the Montague Boston 8 which I only recently bought changing the tyres only and it handles gravel no probs. Here's the link if you're interested in finding out more http://www.montaguebikes.co.uk/
  • @hambo, yep, part of my commute involves getting the train.
  • hambohambo Posts: 49
    dthom3uk wrote:
    @hambo, yep, part of my commute involves getting the train.

    Ok, in that case would not recommend Montague bike as they are a bit too big and cumbersome to carry around.
  • Depends on your money to a degree. I ride a Birdy, its a great ride & folds carryably small, it's still going as good as new after 11 years but they're an expensive brand to get into.

    Out of interest why have you discounted the Brompton?
  • cooldadcooldad Posts: 32,599
    hambo wrote:
    dthom3uk wrote:
    @hambo, yep, part of my commute involves getting the train.

    Ok, in that case would not recommend Montague bike as they are a bit too big and cumbersome to carry around.
    Not to mention ugly, badly specced and stupidly expensive.
    I don't do smileys.

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  • I just thought the route I take would be too rough for the smaller wheels on a Brompton. In addition I thought the roughness of the route would require a folder with less flex in the frame.
  • dthom3uk wrote:
    I just thought the route I take would be too rough for the smaller wheels on a Brompton. In addition I thought the roughness of the route would require a folder with less flex in the frame.

    From what you describe of your route, a Brompton would cope fine, I'm no fanboy but wouldn't discount a 2nd hand one for that type of trip.
  • iPeteiPete Posts: 6,076
    I treat my Brompton like a CX bike sometimes, throwing it across fields, gravel tracks, snow and ice etc. and it copes fine.
  • MichaelWMichaelW Posts: 2,164
    Birdy has front suspension so may cope better with the ruff stuff.
  • Thanks for the feedback, plenty to ponder.
  • MichaelW wrote:
    Birdy has front suspension so may cope better with the ruff stuff.

    Yep, it takes the edge off the high speed (20+mph) wheel wobble too. The rear elastomer 'suspension' is surprisingly competent too, you can also get hard, medium and soft options to suit choice and road type.

    I live and ride on the side of the pennines & into Manchester etc on country paths, towpaths, horrendously underfunded roads suffering neglect and bad winters and am absolutely comfy on my Birdy.

    @Dthom3uk: you should look at the tyres particularly too, smaller wheels = far higher wheel RPM = wear quicker than a full size bike. I have schwalbe marathons 18's which are exceedingly good all rounders, last well and are equally as p* proof as their larger cousins.
  • I've been riding a dahon jack (urban mtb type thing) for four years now... Its taken anything i've thrown at it and been used on a commute that included two train journeys for a year or so of that (i got bored and moved!). Train stuff easy, just roll it then fold it when you get to the platform. Its no lightweight and mine is now more of a full on MTB after having replaced most of it except the frame, but in its life its gone over pretty much everything including the newnham 24/12...
  • t4tomot4tomo Posts: 2,643
    Slightly biased because I commute on a Brompton. But:

    - Nothing folds as small on a train so if you're train is very busy a Brommie is a godsend.

    - Secondly the Brompton has rear suspension (compressable rubber block) which the Dahon & Tern don't which will add a bit of comfort down the tow path.

    Brommies are more expensive though.
    Bianchi Infinito CV
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  • fnegronifnegroni Posts: 794
    You are better off with a set of large volume tyres (Schwalbe Big Apple) to add comfort. That would easily outperform the "suspension" (more like a rubber damper) on the Brompton.
  • hambohambo Posts: 49
    I tried the Brompton with its suspension. But beware if your like me over 190lbs the suspension actually makes the bike unstable. For me it felt like a was on a pogo stick with all the bouncing up and down. Without suspension would probably be better. I went for a full sized folder which is not ideal for you but I know for me would handle potholes etc should I accidentally come across one too late that bit better than a smaller bike would.
  • dthom3ukdthom3uk Posts: 11
    Thanks for the feedback folks.

    I was looking at the Tern P9 but seeing as they are not available until May I might go for the cheaper D8:

    http://www.evanscycles.com/products/tern/link-d8-2012-folding-bike-ec032582
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