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Old 07-26-2006, 07:58 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by 85MH325
Yeah... and I confess... I wanted a little "wow" with the bike... I could have bought a Downtube, or Dahon for considerably less... but my plan is to upgrade this one to LX and XT components over the winter... I'm really hooked on Shimano Rapid-Fire... and nothing else is quite as satisfying...
There are few things more "wow" than getting lots out of a supposedly inferior bike.

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Originally Posted by 85MH325
... probably THE most painful saddle I've ever had the displeasure of throwing a leg over (major "parts" numness here)... so if you get one, just plan on buying a new saddle with it. My main complaint is the same as just about everyone else's... and that is that the gearing is just to low for any serious riding.
?? Must be a YMMV moment, as I've found 70 gear inches is good for cruising at 18-19, and I can touch 33 with a 90" gear (53x11 with 20" wheels), although typically if I'm still pedalling over 25 it's only because I'm trying to drop someone. I've ordered a Brooks B67 for the Vitesse. Should be here tomorrow.

Can hubs have wrecked me in a way. Derailleurs have their place, but the only multi-speed drivetrains that I've found to be spot-on reliable have been Sturmey or Nexus. Although I once had a Campy/Zeus setup that didn't totally ralph. I'd like to try something like this: http://www.tincanten.com/ sometime

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Old 07-26-2006, 08:11 PM   #16
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Good stuff!

I always enjoy reading about bikes! I've also visited the whole folder idea, but like Rodger, found them a bit expensive. I've toyed around with the idea of a BMX frame with a bigger gear, taller stem and seatpost... anyone done this route? I'm only 5 5" (but tall enough to reach the ground!! )!

Heck, I can fit on my 11 year old's 20" bike... but I do look a bit like a circus clown on it though.
Marc
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Old 07-26-2006, 08:36 PM   #17
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Well being a bikeaholic is only secondary to my aluminitis...and the only cure is more I currently have about 4-5 rideable bikes, and two more under construction, just like my Airstreams The most trouble free bike I have ever owned is my 70's vintage Raleigh 3sp. It has taken years of use and abuse and is still working. I am starting the search for an affordable folder, I just bought a Redline 9.2.5 single speed with the flip flop wheel, but the itch needs scratching.
RedSHED thanks for the reports on the Dahon's they are on my list to look at. I have actually located a shop in Greenville, SC that has supposedly has several different models in stock. I hope to check them out next week. Also thanks for the link to the "tincanten"...those are some awesome speeds and a wonderful collection of bikes.

One of my current bicycle projects is a "city" bike that I am building up out of an old Motobecane frame, it will have a S-A 3sp rear hub, S-A Dynohub, laced to 700c wheels, fenders etc. Best part is most of the parts were scavenged or bought on deep discount from close out sales.

Maybe we need a bike subgroup?

Aaron
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Old 07-26-2006, 08:50 PM   #18
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I just receive Dahon Espresso purchased from internet shop for $322 delivered to front door.. It is aluminum framed folding 26" city bike, weighs about 28 pounds, and folds to 30" by 30" by 9" in less than 10 seconds...

Bike made in Taiwan, has good 21spd gears and center-pull brakes and spring suspension seat post. Three frame sizes, including 20" version for taller people. I wasn't really happy with packaging for shipment across country via UPS ground, and derailler bent upon arrival, but so far so good, and at that price it doesn't have to last 15 years to be good investment. No more rack on rear of trailer, or locks and hope that it stays when left outside. It folds neatly into black bag and into back of tow vehicle when not needed. Local dealer store prices much higher, plus taxes at over 8% in Calif.. Sigh...

http://www.dahon.com/us/espresso.htm

Similar bike is Mariner, sold in stores catering to boaters...

John McG
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Old 07-26-2006, 09:43 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by RedSHED
?? Must be a YMMV moment... Can hubs have wrecked me in a way. Derailleurs have their place, but the only multi-speed drivetrains that I've found to be spot-on reliable have been Sturmey or Nexus.
If you've ever ridden a Giant Halfway, you'd understand. In top gear (and I don't recall what the gear stuff is on it now...) you can't pedal on a mild downhill. The cassette doesn't keep up with the hub... so you coast 'cause that's all you can do. Not that that's necessarily bad, it's just kind of ... well... lame I guess. I'm used to being able to add speed downhill if I wanted to.

I also understand that the new can hubs are quite the deal... but when I was a youngster, derailleurs had it all over them for reliability and serviceability. I still can't look at a can hub and wonder what's really going on inside. So... I'll stay with a derailleur. I may have to adjust and clean it a little more often, but at least I can see what it does!

And as for the 'inferior' bike stuff... I don't see them that way at all. They are less expensive, and have less expensive componentry. It all works just fine, maybe just not as long and perhaps not as smoothly. I've grown fond of mechanisms that are built well to last a long time and be repairable rather than disposable. I appreciate a silky-smooth shift time after time after time, and a silent running wheel. I suppose that's one of the reasons we're all drawn to Airstreams. Of course, there are costs associated with buying higher-end stuff, but if you amortize it over the life of the gizmo, the cost per year usually isn't much different over buying several less expensive gizmos and pitching or recycling them.

Roger
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Old 07-26-2006, 10:18 PM   #20
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hello again bike nuts....

since i don't have adequate storage space for multiple airstreams....
i've focused on bicycles and fountain pens....i have lots of both....

with regard to the moultons i neglected to post the most basic point...
they aren't folders!
many split into 2 pieces; some don't...
but none of the real moultons fold...
what they are, are full suspension road bikes with small wheels...
dr moulton designed the the suspension for the original minicooper...
now those are small wheels!
and he wanted a bike that would fit in the boot of a mini...
so the moulton bike was made to split....and fit.

now i also noticed that bernie mentioned the richey breakaway...
this is a great bike for travel, splits into pieces and packs in a large suit case. with big wheels and a normal drivetrain...it rides just like any 700c bike.

for folks that like big wheels most quality steel or ti frames can be made into 'travel bikes' with s&s couplers....they are amazing...read about them here:
http://www.sandsmachine.com/

redshed mentions can hubs...."Can hubs have wrecked me in a way. Derailleurs have their place, but the only multi-speed drivetrains that I've found to be spot-on reliable have been Sturmey or Nexus."......

and i agree but the can of can hubs is the rohloff hub....
this is a piece of work. as fine a hub as ever made.
not inexpensive but having riden on them, wow.
i will have one some day.
http://www.rohloffusa.com/frame.htm

marc (3Ms75Argosy) asks about a bmx like small wheeler
made for regular riding...
http://www.burrobikes.com/
check out the burro bike. not too expensive.
like a grown up bmx and a flexible enough platform
for off road, trail, touring, road and so on...

like wahoonc,
i love retro bikes. single speeds, vintage brit bikes (holdsworth or raleigh) and now pashley bikes...pashley makes work bikes, folder, cart bikes, classics and a lot more....
http://www.pashley.co.uk/
they are the largest bike maker still building bikes in the u.k. and they make a moulton called the apb...now replaced with the "tsr" model...
http://www.tsr.uk.com/
this is a sweet bike, rides like a moulton because it is! can be had for 2k or so and worth every penny.

small wheel bikes are a blast; violate most of the conventional wisdom and look different. i love 'em.

anyone wanting basic info on folding bikes should visit the folding bike society...
http://www.foldsoc.co.uk/

or the web site for this u.k. dealer...they have lots of info and PARTS for most folding bikes in use today....
http://www.foldingbikes.co.uk/index1.html

wahoonc....not sure why ya want a folder but if looking for a vintage, small wheel folder, look for the raleigh '20s' from the late 60s-70s. raleigh briefly owned the moulton design (alex regained it in the 80s) and made real folders with using moulton features... these bikes were imported into the usa more than any other moulton so they are available...can be found for 100-300$ and are a great way to get into this segment....for a guy who wants to grow his own diesel!

cheers
2air'
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Old 07-26-2006, 11:45 PM   #21
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The Three Rs (Raleigh, Ritchey & Rohloff)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
since i don't have adequate storage space for multiple airstreams....i've focused on bicycles and fountain pens....i have lots of both....
Don't let my wife find out about the fountain pens, she'll want me to move the bikes out of the living room. I keep pointing out that bikes are SOOO much smaller than old Fords
Quote:
now i also noticed that bernie mentioned the richey breakaway...
this is a great bike for travel, splits into pieces and packs in a large suit case. with big wheels and a normal drivetrain...it rides just like any 700c bike.
I'll have more to report when I get back from Ireland the end of August but the Ritchey is absolutely a fabulous bike to ride irregardless of the "breakaway" feature. It has a "cult" following that reminds me a bit of.. oh, say Airstreams

Tom Ritchey and his followers are not unlike Wally and the Caravans:
http://breakawaytoday.blogspot.com/
Quote:
most quality steel or ti frames can be made into 'travel bikes' with s&s couplers....they are amazing...

the can of can hubs is the rohloff hub....
this is a piece of work. as fine a hub as ever made.
not inexpensive
Work of art yes, "not inexpensive" is a bit of an understatement for both of these really sweet items. The price of the couplings along with the price of installation and repainting the frame you'd better be talking high end custom frame to make it worth while. They are increadibly strong; so much so that they are a fixture with the tandem crowd. One of the most expensive bikes I've probably seen was a Calfee tandem with S&S couplings (yes Virginia, they work with PLASTIC bikes ).
Quote:
....if looking for a vintage, small wheel folder, look for the raleigh '20s' from the late 60s-70s. ... these bikes were imported into the usa more than any other moulton so they are available...can be found for 100-300$ and are a great way to get into this segment....
Me thinks that would be a steal of a deal. Good 'ol Sheldon Brown has made them infinitely collectable (as if they needed any help )
http://www.sheldonbrown.com/raleigh-twenty.html
I just think old Raleighs are cool. And if my old clunker is any gage the 3spd Sturmney Arch hubs are indeed bullet proof:

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My 1951 Raleigh with Dyno hub and working headlight / tail light (note: as found photo... stem and seat are WAY out of adjustment).

-Bernie
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Old 07-27-2006, 01:57 AM   #22
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Save ME!!!

http://seattle.craigslist.org/est/bik/186746505.html

I've listed my '51 Raleigh on Craigslist and already have a buyer interested. If the '51 goes I'm going to buy these. Please! someone beat me to it!

-Bernie
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Old 07-27-2006, 02:31 AM   #23
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http://seattle.craigslist.org/est/bik/186746505.html I'm going to buy these. Please! someone beat me to it! -Bernie
good find bernie!

well as i suggested...
widely available and
priced for buying in multiples...
of course you have the benefit of inspecting these firsthand.

don't worry about weight, bearings, a little rust,
the crappy but original saddle, and so on

but do check the head tube/fork tube/handle bar stem sections,
these bikes have sometimes been impacted in the front
(small wheels down in potholes or into curbs)
and can have bending at the fork/crown area
or where the 'down tube' meets the fork tube...
this isn't terminal but can be a pain to correct
and dangerous if not detected...

here is an example of another model i like too...
http://cgi.ebay.com/RALEIGH-FOLDING-...QQcmdZViewItem
this was also available without the hinge/folding option...
these are fun bikes to modify.

now wahoonc needs to look in his neck of the woods...
shipping on even one of these would double the purchase price

cheers
2air'
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Old 07-27-2006, 04:48 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
hello again bike nuts....


wahoonc....not sure why ya want a folder but if looking for a vintage, small wheel folder, look for the raleigh '20s' from the late 60s-70s. raleigh briefly owned the moulton design (alex regained it in the 80s) and made real folders with using moulton features... these bikes were imported into the usa more than any other moulton so they are available...can be found for 100-300$ and are a great way to get into this segment....for a guy who wants to grow his own diesel!

cheers
2air'
Dunno either I have looked at and ridden BF's, now is the chance to try some Dahon's I have had the Raleigh 20's but am looking for something that collapes a bit smaller for convienence. I travel extensively by multiple means (typically my big red truck) but do take the occasional bus, plane or train. My job requires that I spend most of my life on the road, last year it was about 280 days on the road. Typically I will spent a couple of months at a time in a given area. I always haunt the thrift shops etc when I travel in hopes of finding an undiscovered jewel. Haven't found anything in quite a while. I have always had, used and enjoyed bicycles. I figure it will be something to keep me out of trouble if I ever come in off the road, which may never happen, I enjoy traveling too much.

Aaron
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Old 07-27-2006, 05:17 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2airishuman
hello again bike nuts....

redshed mentions can hubs...."Can hubs have wrecked me in a way. Derailleurs have their place, but the only multi-speed drivetrains that I've found to be spot-on reliable have been Sturmey or Nexus."......

and i agree but the can of can hubs is the rohloff hub....
this is a piece of work. as fine a hub as ever made.
not inexpensive but having riden on them, wow.
i will have one some day.
Stunning, and yet, I can't help feeling that the Rohloff is overkill, mostly. Our city's metropolitan planning officer has one (almost always uses it vs car to work), but why... I mean his bike is great, and more power to him.

While I'm really enjoying the 5spd Sturmey, the AW3 is the real masterpiece - a cruising gear, a headwind gear, and a tailwind gear. Not too heavy, will run forever.

There is one guy in town with a FM4 equipped Raleigh, says he has a close ratio 4 speed...I'd like to see that. Bought it new in '69 or '70, never built it into a wheel - yet
If you liked tincanten, you might enjoy http://www.3speedtour.com/

There are a couple of web presences who've used SA 3 speeds extensively. One, http://www.sandsmachine.com/a_syc_r1.htm with around 90,000 miles of messenger service in San Francisco, plus Paris-Brest-Paris etc.

another, Kent Peterson, has converted his fixie to an AW http://www.mile43.com/peterson/3Speed/KogswellG3.html This

Elsewhere on his mile43 site, you may find Kent's description of doing PBP on a Bike Friday.

Both these guys are a little nutty, but they both write well, and both travel with bikes (on topic, wow!).
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Old 07-27-2006, 05:28 AM   #26
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Trying to get me in trouble?

RedSHED,
Couple of items...thanks for the links, I am glad to know there are people as crazy about British 3spds as I am. I have a whole box of NOS AW hubs plus a couple more boxes of used parts. Only problem is bringing more stuff home to store in the shed. I gotta hurry up and get retired so I can play with my "stuff"

Other item is Columbus, IN. My brother lived there back in the early nineties, nice place in his opinion. IIRC he was working for EDS attached to Cummins.

Aaron
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Old 07-27-2006, 06:36 AM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wahoonc
Dunno either I have looked at and ridden BF's, now is the chance to try some Dahon's I have had the Raleigh 20's but am looking for something that collapes a bit smaller for convienence. I travel extensively by multiple means (typically my big red truck) but do take the occasional bus, plane or train.
Aaron
And therein lies the dichotomy of folders. You want a bike that is affordable, striking to look at, light enough to carry through an airport and small enough that will fit in your pocket, tough enough to survive the rigors of being tossed around in a truck, and yet delivers a 700c road bike geometry and ride. The Brompton is small, folds quickly and is probably the easiest to carry, but at 6'5" tall and 180 lbs, the 16" wheels don't appeal to me, and they're way overpriced here. Dahon has enough models to cover all of the bases, and they're inexpensive, but in the folder world, don't carry much "wow" value (snob appeal? ) but probably represent the best value for the dollar. Bike Friday and Swift are cottage industry manufacturers and are considered premier folders, but are pricey. The Xootr Swift seems to be a very good value. Airnimal has LOTS of "wow" value, but you have to REALLY want to have their bikes at an average of over $2k each. Trek, KHS and Giant make interesting bikes, and all work fine, but are kind of uninspiring... what DO you do when you're a cheapskate and yet want Campy components and a Moulton or Ritchie-designed frame?

Classic cars, classic bikes, and vintage Airstreams all have the 'cool' factor in common. What they're not (usually) is particularly comfortable. As with cars and Airstreams, not all of the recent innovations in bikes are useful or worthwhile, and a lot of it just adds unnecessary weight and complexity, BUT if you're willing to piecemeal a bike together, you can have an extraordinary ride with excellent components for not a lot of dollars (recognizing that's a perspective, not a dollar amount). I recently had the privilege of looking at a $7,000 Lightspeet Ti. The new custom-built Bike Friday is a piker at $1,600 by the Lightspeed standards, but is still pretty pricey for most of us. Frankly, what I paid for the old NWT I just bought is kind of appalling to me, but I know that once I'm done with it, it'll be exactly as I want it.

I think that there was a quantum leap in bicycle engineering in the late '90s and the stuff built from about '96 to '00 was just excellent equipment... particularly Shimano LX and XT (and 105/Ultegra) from that period represented superb engineering and production and IMHO was probably the pinnacle of drivetrain design to date. Subsequent generations of drivetrains have refined that stuff, made it cheaper, more gears, etc. but none of it is 'better' or revolutionary. Maybe disk brakes, especially for 'real' off-road use... but other than that everything is just refinements of the original SIS equipment. I'm not sure that there's much reason to be on the "bleeding edge" of componentry for the average rider, but the "quality" stuff built ten years ago is still going strong, and probably will be for years to come. One of the folding bikes I saw recently (NOT a Strida) had a kevlar belt drive train with a can hub. When THAT technology becomes universal, folders will have real value... lightweight, low maintenance, and NO CHAIN GREASE on your pants when you carry your bike!

Although there are some who will argue that leather saddles are still favored, saddle engineering has also made quantum leaps in the past few years. I'll take a reasonably light frame and high-quality components on a "rider" over the "art" value of the old bikes, thank you very much... if the lighter, newer frames also happen to have some "art" value as well, so much the better!

Roger
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Old 07-27-2006, 10:05 AM   #28
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Bernie...

you're not selling your old girl, are you? I just saw your Raleigh for sale in our Craigslist last night at work... getting some new toys?

Roger.. you know, I didn't really look at folders too much because.. well, they looked funny to me at first. HOWEVER... I did see an all black BF with a MONSTER (must have been 60+ teeth) front gear in Malaysia this winter... the rider was just honking on it! It looked like it had the reduced count spoke wheels... it just looked right. I got home, and was disappointed at the price point of the bikes...

Oh well, still dreaming!
Marc
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