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Ride quality differences between folders

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Ride quality differences between folders

Old 05-17-22, 12:43 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Alameda
Posts: 397

Bikes: Xootr Swift

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Originally Posted by Ozonation View Post
For those of you that have had the opportunity to own and/or ride a variety of folders... how would you compare the ride quality between a Brompton, a Dahon (or that style of fold), a Bike Friday, and say, a mini-velo.

I've ridden a Brompton for almost a decade, and I love the fold and compactness, but lately, I'm feeling it's got just a little a bit too much flex or play. Not awful but it's been more noticeable lately. I'm wondering if a Dahon - particularly the mid-level models - might offer a bit more stiffness with its different fold. I'm interested in a more "supple" (referencing Path Less Pedaled) ride with larger tires, which of course, you cannot get on the Bromptons, but you can on a Dahon, a Bike Friday, or other folders. Lately, I've seen some positive reviews on a mini-velo, like the Velo Orange Neutrino, which seem to offer more latitude in terms of tires, better handling, etc. Also, I'm realizing that for the most part, unless I'm doing a lot of traveling, just the capacity to fold or being smaller to handle as opposed to the smallest fold possible might be sufficient.

Any commentary appreciated. Thanks.

Hey Ozonation,

I guess the question is: What do you want? How good is good enough? What tradeoffs are you willing to have?

FWIW, this is what I've tried: Pacific Carryme, Brompton M6r, Xootr Swift, a bunch of Dahons (the newer ones are way stiffer than old frames), and a Strida clone.

Pretty much every bike is stiffer than the Brompton (including the Carryme). Brompton has the best fold and luggage options...but only an okay ride (rides like a soggy English 3 speed).

Personally, for a pure bike, it's hard to beat the Xootr Swift.

The fold is very flat, and works great for behind a door. It's very stiff. Very versatile, and takes non-propietary parts. Not the greatest luggage options.

No fiddly parts to break.

If you're looking for the polar opposite of the Brompton, the Xootr Swift would be it.

Other bikes that look like it'll be in a similar vein: Moulton, Bike Friday (pocket rocket, lhama, etc), the Tyrell Ive, Mini-velos, the Airnimals, Pacific reach.....(caveat, I've never tried these bikes)

IMHO, I'd wait for the Origami Swift to come out (in June/July?).

Piningis seems like a very smart guy that loves bikes.

I'm very curious about how he'll ressurect the Swift....if it has a front luggage option, it'll solve my only complaint with the bike.

Disc Brakes are also a welcome upgrade.
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