Brompton tyres sucking the life out of me

Discussion in 'Folding Bikes' started by ianrauk, 16 Nov 2017.

  1. GrumpyGregry

    GrumpyGregry Here for rides.

    Are kojaks really that prone to visitations and can't park patches take care if visited?
  2. TheDoctor

    TheDoctor Exterminate Christmas! Moderator

    Kojaks were vigorously discouraged from FNRttC rides for over fairy-friendliness IIRC.
  3. reppans

    reppans Active Member

    As many have mentioned, nothing inherently slow about the small wheels - they've actually broken quite a few land speed records, including a Moulton record still standing.

    IMHO the Brompton feels slower/less efficient than it actually is - I've run time trials with my equivalently priced 700x32 (same pressure, similar tire profile) gravel bike and was surprised to find I was only ~1mph/7% slower on the B. Rigged my M bars with a aero drop position and cut that in half to 0.5mph/3.5%, not to mention adding comfort. Knock that down another 1% if I included the necessary 2kg of locks for the gravel bike. I figure that last 2.5% is there to stay - a combination of inefficiencies from the dual drivetrain (derailleur+IGH), imperfect gear ratios, handlebar/suspension flex, and half-clip vs Clipless pedals.

    For me the difference in speed/efficiency/comfort between the two bikes is now so small that I regularly alternate between two on loop exercise rides (no intentions of stopping/locking/folding). The Brompton always feels slower to me, but the endless advantages of that fold make it my goto bike. YMMV, of course.
    Last edited: 18 Nov 2017
    samsbike likes this.
  4. Elybazza61

    Elybazza61 Veteran

    This is what I do in Cambridge;it's an old Ridgeback frame which looks like it's been fired at with a shotgun, set up single-speed with old shimano bits.It can get left for a week without use but it's always there when needed,even if it did get nicked I wouldn't worry as it's not cost me anything and the money saved not buying a Brompton/Dahon/whatever has gone on blingy bits on the nice bikes.
  5. YukonBoy

    YukonBoy Guru

    Agree with the others ordinary marathons have a good balance between ride and puncture protection. You will not feel like the life is being sucked out of you.
  6. simon.r

    simon.r Person

    Somewhere in between the Marathon and the Kojak is the standard Brompton tyre:

    I’m another pootler on the Brompton, but on the odd occasion I do push on I can’t say I notice significantly more rolling resistance on these than an average 700c tyres.

    Worth looking on eBay if you want a pair cheap as they quite often appear on there in nearly new condition.
  7. The Jogger

    The Jogger Guru

  8. Dave 123

    Dave 123 Guru

    My rear tyre blew a big hole on my Spa yesterday @ianrauk and I went to replace it. It was a Schwalbe Marathon Racer. Rutland cycles only had an M+, it was either that or go home on my front wheel!

    It's like riding on concrete tyres! I feel your pain!
  9. fatjel

    fatjel Über Member

    West Wales
    I have Brompton tyres on mine. They came with it and feel OK .
    Was expecting to have to change them as I’m very picky about tyres as a rule.
    Never had m+ that I could tolerate. Normal marathons always feel like they roll better to me
    I have to say carbon frame and dura ace wheels get me along a bit quicker
  10. OP

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah

    Atop a Ti
    I've changed the tyres from Marathon Plus to the standard Brompton Tyres. They do seem to be a little bit better rolling.
    However, I think that having had to change my mindset as to how I am riding and a month down the line of using the bike. My mind, body and muscles are becoming more in tune with the Brompton. I am definitely getting a little quicker on the commute.

    The M+'s are in the shed and will be used as spares.
    TinyMyNewt likes this.
  11. Fab Foodie

    Fab Foodie hanging-on in quiet desperation ...

    That’s good, and I think normal. The B is a different riding proposition and it takes a while to settle into it.
    Another thing I thought if was whether setting the saddle more rearwards might help. I used the Brompton extension to do that and it makes the bike feel a little more ‘normal’ for me (of long back and short legs).
    Glad it’s getting better anyhow :-)
    samsbike likes this.
  12. OP

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah

    Atop a Ti
    The saddle seems to be in the right position, it's certainly not uncomfortable.
    I do also have the seat post at the max. I'm 5'9", so anyone taller must have a bit of a problem or have a taller post.
  13. Kell

    Kell Senior Member

    It's more about aero dynamics. Brompton set up their bikes with the sadlle pushed as far forward on the rails as it will go - obviously making you more 'sit-up-and-beg' It was one of the first things I altered. Flipped the pentaclip the other way up and pushed the seat right back.

    I also think they do take a lot of getting used to.

    After 30+ years of riding MTBs I bought my first road bike (or racer as we used to call them) about 3 years ago and it felt really twitchy. Now when I use the road bike after being on the Brompton all week, it feels really planted.

    It also takes a while to get used to the gearing.

    Brompton set up:



    Last edited: 6 Dec 2017
    ianrauk likes this.
  14. lazyfatgit

    lazyfatgit Veteran

    Lawrence, NSW
    At 6 2 I should probably have got the extended post but get by with the pentaclip reversed and as close to the top of the post as I dared.

    I don’t commute on it now but when I did I found the Brompton green tyres ok. I dislike the M+ that I tried on a previous bike and have never purchased any since. Did run Marathons on the tourer and they weren’t too bad.
  15. OP

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah

    Atop a Ti
    Thanks @Kell That's very interesting about the saddle. I may have a look at that.
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