Should I get back into Cycling?

oreo_muncher

Senior Member
Quite different to a road bike to ride, they flex at the rear hinge to gives some suspension, which makes them less efficient uphill, but they ride pretty will. obviously slightly slower, otherwise the pro would use them in the TdeF etc. but as "fast" whatever that means as say a flat bar hybrid, particularly with S type bars, as they sit slightly lower than M type etc so more aero and more like a full size bike riding position.

As stated above, they can be a bit marmite. They are the best choice if you need to take a bike on crowded public transport as part of your commute. You haven't really indicted what or if you're considering one for.
Curious if I would find them comfortable or if I would them annoying and uncomfortable. I just want to try them out of curiosity. I saw the different handle bar positions and not sure which one I would like best for myself. I still take my road bike on the train when I go between uni and home, that bike always comes with me.
 

oldworld

Well-Known Member
I've never owned a Brompton but they seem well made and versatile machines.
My big concern would be that being so low the drive train would get very dirty and potentially need replacing more often than a full size bike.
If I were buying one I'd consider a hub gear.
 

oreo_muncher

Senior Member
I've never owned a Brompton but they seem well made and versatile machines.
My big concern would be that being so low the drive train would get very dirty and potentially need replacing more often than a full size bike.
If I were buying one I'd consider a hub gear.
I just think they're quite expensive >1k. I wonder with the geometry difference how I would find them. Having got used to my road bike, I find the idea of an upright position with hybrids, Brompton's etc. a weird thought.
 
Last December/January this year I cycled with a cheap Halfords bike, using a car carrier I'd cycle into the city and around the two bridges here (took around 45 mins) and do this pretty much 3-4 times a week in the night.
Just to to back to this....
I'd imagine taking a bike into the city and cycling at night would put you into a small subset of cyclists.

I've no idea where you are but would this not be a time to revisit the concept and look for another place to ride?

Fully agree about the mental benefits of cycling, although I'd venture that if you find cycling in the city at night to be helpful, a day ride in daylight with nature all around and less attention needed could blow your mind - in a positive way!^_^

Is there a reason you don't cycle from your own door?
 
Mmmm, on the other hand, three of my bikes have QR skewers on the wheels, so I can whip the front wheel off and get the bike in the car that way. :smile:

Those three bikes are all different (roadie, hybrid, MTB) and you do get used to switching between the different riding positions and tyre widths @oreo_muncher
 

SkipdiverJohn

Veteran
Location
London
For a start I didn't like the ride.
Harsh, jolty ride on anything but very smooth surfaces combined with very quick, twitchy steering. Not my cup of tea at all, one spin on a friend's one was enough for me! A conventional 20" wheel folder is not as extreme as a Brompton. ride comfort is still worse than a big wheel bike, but not to such a degree, and the handling tends to be less twitchy. Bromptons are also expensive to buy and extremely stealable so security is a problem.
 

Dogtrousers

Kilometre nibbler
Once you're riding it there's not an enormous difference between a Brompton and a full size bike. It's just a bike. It takes about 10 minutes to get used to the handling. It's not ideal for longer rides but it's perfectly OK. I've ridden 100 milers on mine, at about the same speed that I do on my main bike (which is not very fast).

It's a bit less practical because I don't have a front luggage block so I have to take a rucksack if riding the Brompton. But that's my fault for not having the right equipment. The gearing isn't as low at the bottom end as my main bike so hills can be a bit of a grind. The riding position is very upright so you really feel headwinds. I'd say that's the main difference for me because I'm quite tall and have really struggled against the wind on my Brompton.

But these are all minor points. Basically, it's just another bike - a very versatile one that it folds up.

Non cyclists who can be easily impressed say "gosh, you cycled all that way on a Brompton. It has such little wheels. You must be really fit." I don't let them in to the secret that it's not much different to any other bike.
 
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Julia9054

Guru
Location
Knaresborough
Once you're riding it there's not an enormous difference between a Brompton and an full size bike. It's just a bike. It takes about 10 minutes to get used to the handling. It's not ideal for longer rides but it's perfectly OK. I've ridden 100 milers on mine, at about the same speed that I do on my main bike (which is not very fast).

It's a bit less practical because I don't have a front luggage block so I have to take a rucksack if riding the Brompton. But that's my fault for not having the right equipment. The gearing isn't as low at the bottom end as my main bike so hills can be a bit of a grind. The riding position is very upright so you really feel headwinds.

But these are all minor points. Basically, it's just another bike - a very versatile one that it folds up.

Non cyclists who can be easily impressed say "gosh, you cycled all that way on a Brompton. It has such little wheels. You must be really fit." I don't let them in to the secret that it's not much different to any other bike.
I’m not sure I agree with you. I find it bouncy and twitchy compared to a road bike.
Maybe because I am small and possibly not that strong, I also find it heavy and awkward to carry. Lugging the thing across Leeds train station from platform 1 to platform 16 for a trip to Manchester left my leg covered in bruises.
I bought it on a whim and mainly use it for pottering around town. It’s the only bike I have that I don’t have to change my shoes to ride.
Its main purpose is to sit in my hallway looking stylish and making me feel guilty every time I walk past it for not riding it more often!
 

Dogtrousers

Kilometre nibbler
I’m not sure I agree with you. I find it bouncy and twitchy compared to a road bike.
Maybe because I am small and possibly not that strong, I also find it heavy and awkward to carry. Lugging the thing across Leeds train station from platform 1 to platform 16 for a trip to Manchester left my leg covered in bruises.
I bought it on a whim and mainly use it for pottering around town. It’s the only bike I have that I don’t have to change my shoes to ride.
Its main purpose is to sit in my hallway looking stylish and making me feel guilty every time I walk past it for not riding it more often!
I find it twitchy for about 10 minutes, then I forget about it and my reflexes get reprogrammed.

I agree with you about lugging it around stations. It's not exactly featherlight (and neither am I) but if you have EZ wheels then it tootles around quite well. Until you get to a flight of stairs that is. I used to have a commute with multiple changes of train and lots of stairs. Got me quite fit.
 

united4ever

Über Member
OP, I do t get why you drive into town to cycle. Why not just set off from your house and do a country or suburban loop?. Then you also can choose a regular bike.
 

Brooks

Well-Known Member
Location
S.E. London
Hello, I've been on and off with cycling since around 2015. But this year, I don't need to tell anybody about the kind of crap we've all endured in regards to working from home or not being able to enjoy life outside of the office or job like we're all used to.

Last December/January this year I cycled with a cheap Halfords bike, using a car carrier I'd cycle into the city and around the two bridges here (took around 45 mins) and do this pretty much 3-4 times a week in the night. Though it was cold, never felt it and felt quite relaxing.

I gave up in May as my cheap old bike needed around £60 of parts which weren't worth fixing and I decided to just go walking instead. That same 45 minute cycle takes over 2 hours walking though!

I'm thinking more of the mental health benefits, getting away from a screen when 5pm hits instead of sitting around, in the same room, with nothing else to do but look at the same screen after a while.

Do you recommend something like a Brompton? As I'd like to keep the bike in the car most of the time and not worry about a cycle carrier and installing / removing, scratching the car, nearly falling off, needing adjusted etc.. Or are there better cheaper foldables?
I don't know where you live but could you not put the bike on the train to go into town? That's a hell of a lot cheaper than a Brompton 😀
 
I wouldn't listen to anyone who took one short ride on a brompton and wrote them off for good, as there is a bit of an adjustment period as you get used to the way they handle, but the same could be said of changing from a road to a recumbent, or hybrid to a fully sus mountain bike. They are perfectly good at getting from A to B. Brompton's are are expensive because you are paying for UK assembled and patented design, which afaik has the most compact design of all folders, they are popular because of their superb folding. It's very impressive bit of kit. As with all bikes, you've really got to try them before you you buy them, otherwise you are taking a risk that you don't get on with it, but coming from a guy that has ridden all sorts of bikes over the years, I can safely say that whilst my brompton is the least ridden bike in my stable, it's certainly not the most boring to ride. If I only had one bike, it might well be a brompton, because of the versatility it offers. But I don't have to worry about that, because I have 4. :laugh:
 
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