18843Re: [CF] folding bike recommendations?
- Jul 3, 2008=v= The Bike Friday is my top favorite for many reasons.
The inventors are also responsible for some top trailer designs
(i.e. the Burley) and the bike is integrated with a trailer,
which is important for carfreedom. The bikes are made of
steel, so they last and can haul things. They are made in
the U.S. with least-toxic manufacturing methods.
=v= The main drawback of quality American-built bikes is the
price, but they actually aren't substantially more expensive
than nonfolding bikes of the same quality. Some economic
considerations, though: (1) Bike Fridays ride so well that
you generally don't need a second bike, (2) because they hold
up so well (see "made of steel" above) you can get a used one
and still reap the benefits of Bike Friday's service, and (3)
they are, of course, a much better deal than a car!
=v= I am also fond of the Swift Folder for many of the same
reasons, but most of their business has shifted to an low-cost
aluminum model built by Xootr. (It is still possible to get
a steel one, but they're hard to come by.)
=v= Dahons are the best sellers because they're the cheapest.
They have improved greatly over the years, but quality varies;
I have had friends who've lucked out with a good bike, but my
own experience hasn't been good. Still, this is the folding
bike brand that most people go with.
=v= An impressive relative newcomer is the fully-suspended
DownTube. These are low-cost, and the suspension makes up
for any deficit in the frame (including an aluminum frame).
Definitely worth checking out!
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