Thursday, November 30, 2006

Origami ride - December 9th from Meriden

Details for the December 9th Origami ride starting from the Meriden tearooms are here . The theme is 'My most unusual folding bike', so the ride is likely to be quite short to cope !

All welcome, wether on folding bikes or not.

Another Strida-A-Bike comparative test

The latest issue of the CTC magazine, "Cycle" has a four-page test comparing the Strida and A-Bike. There are no great surprises - the A-Bike is smaller when folded and lighter, but definitely more limited when it comes to riding. Comparing them on a short (1.58 mile) journey to a station, the ride took 9 min 52s on the A-Bike and 7 min 53s on the Strida, while walking took 27 min 10s and a Micro-scooter took 16 min 55s. Folding/unfolding times were 30/43s for the A-Bike, 23/26s for the Stirda, though this dropped to 5/12s if the handlebars and pedals weren't folded, and the scooter times were 6/4s.

Christmas offer on Stridas - act quickly!

This is the press release:
"Put a brand-new Strida3 in someone's gift basket this year (maybe even your own!). To reward early shoppers, we've created referral code 'saint nick' (on the last checkout screen). Use it before Friday, December 1st to receive a £19.95 discount on your order.

The Strida represents the best of UK style, and makes one of the most unique (and green) gifts possible.

We continue to ship all orders for next-day delivery on orders placed by noon. so you won't meet with delay by putting a Strida on the gift list. As always, the Strida remains one of the most affordable folders on the market, starting at 239.95 VAT inclusive, before the £19.95 discount. Please visit for pricing and secure online ordering.

Ring us toll-free on 0845 002 0190 with any questions, or to place an order. Tell debbie that saint nick referred you."

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Cyclist's Cafes

While it is difficult enough finding places to stop for refreshment on a ride on your own, especially in new territory, if you are trying to plan a group ride this can be a major problem (I speak from experience). So I'm delighted to see the new site which is being set up to try to create a record of places where we can take a break. Please support Rob in this project - we all stand to gain by creating a database of good stops for cyclists.

Bickerton - the first compact folder

Well, if you have read "It's in the bag!" by Tony Hadland and John Pinkerton, you will know that the idea of folding bikes goes back over a century, and in (relatively!) recent times, it was the Moulton which popularised the idea of small wheels and portability (the Moulton Stowaway in 1962), but even so I really think the case for crediting Harry Bickerton with creating the really portable folder is difficult to dispute, at least in practical terms. For many years the Bickerton had no real competitors; I bought one in around 1980, and although to be honest I didn't enjoy riding it, and was glad when I was able to replace it with a Brompton in 1990, to my mind it has a very important part in cycle history. Mark Bickerton of Cyclemotion, who is Harry Bickerton's son, has made a start on a web site which records some of the important history of the Bickerton folder - you can find it here. A LOT of Bickertons were sold, and we still regularly get enquiries about them - Derek Baker does an excellent job supporting Bickertons - his web site is at, email

Monday, November 27, 2006

The Hummer Tactical mountain bike

The Gadget show has looked at another folding bike, The Hummer Tactical mountain bike. They have added it to the long list of prizes for the competion this week. MORE HERE

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Next VeloVision

The next VeloVision magazine looks to contain plenty of interest to folder enthusiasts. Road tests include the Pacific Reach, Birdy Touring, Bike Friday New World Tourist, Brompton P6R-X and Dahon Mu XL. The Buyer's Guide is hub gearing.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Halfords' Bikes

The Birmingham Post have an article noting that Halfords' latest results put it 'in the black'. Halfords supplies one in every three bicycles sold in the UK, and the company said folding bikes used for commuting, particularly on public transport, "performed particularly well".

Halfords have a long history of selling folding bikes but generally as a minor sideline to the 'popular stuff'. Whether it is the result of the Congestion Charge, a reaction to the London bombings or a rare outbreak of commuter sanity, folders have become a significant section of the mainstream bicycle market.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Dahon Flo test report

We published a report on the Dahon Flo a few weeks ago. Owner Christos Markou was generally very enthusiastic, but he did raise a few issues. Dahon have now replied to these comments, and the reply has now been added to the original report.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

"The Petrolheads Christmas Gift Guide"

"I want to ride my bicycle"
Yes, those really are the headlines of an article in The Daily Telegraph, Saturday 18th November 2006, on folding bicycles! After that, things can only get better, and they do. The article - two half-pages of broadsheet newspaper - covers the Apollo Transition (a very cheap folder), Brompton P6R, PowaCycle (electric folder), Bridgestone Moulton, Dahon Speed Pro TT, Strida 3, Mezzo D9 and an electrically powered Brompton. Each machine is rated 1-10 on performance, value, ride, portability, ease of use and quality, and the price (UK); weight, folded and unfolded size, wheel size and folding time are also given, plus a single sentence of comment from up to 3 reviewers. Not bad as such reviews go, but still rather superficial.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Strida v A-Bike

If you missed the program about these two folders on The Gadget Show, it is apparently available on You Tube (not sure whether this is allowed, but it is!). Naturally it is trivialised and not very realistic, to make it more 'entertaining', but you might want to watch it anyway - it is at

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Cycling in the City

The latest edition of City Cycling is out, continuing the hunt for the Secret Folding Society.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Origami Ride Derby

23 riders met at Derby railway station to follow the Cloud Trail to Worthington. The crosswinds did not deter anyone as we followed paths, canals and a disused railway.
There was a good variety of folding and separable bikes and Trices on the ride. For the spotters: 3 Birdys (Red, Grey and an attractive metallic green Australian version), Moultons (Pylon and Standard), Foldit, Micro, Trice (Classic and XXL), 7 Bromptons (one an SP), a “demonstrator” Downtube, Specialised, Dawoo Shuttle and 2 large wheel bikes (Kaffenback and Raleigh). A hot meal was welcome at the Bulls Head in the village of Wilson. No punctures! Thank you to everyone for supporting the ride.
The next ride will be on the 9th December 2006, starting from the Tea Rooms in Meriden.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Stolen Folders

It is very depressing to find that we now get quite frequent reports of folders being stolen. If you possibly can, the best thing is to fold the machine and take it with you, rather than leave it locked up anywhere, even for a short time. As readers should be aware, we have a register of stolen folders on the web site, and we will continue to maintain that, but the frequency at which they are now being reported means that we will have to stop posting the information here on the News page as well in future.


Over the last few months we have received a number of enquiries from people who wanted to know more about Downtube folders. Our knowledge was limited to what can be found on their web site, but last week they kindly sent us a bike to test. The model we have is the top-of-the-range IX FS, which has 20 inch wheels and front and rear suspension. We should have a full report in 2-3 weeks time, but initial impressions are quite favourable for a very competitively priced machine. We should have the test bike at the November Origami Ride, which starts from Derby railway station at 11:02 on Saturday 11th November (see the Origami section of the Events page for more information), so if you are coming to that ride you will have a chance to look at and try the bike.

Strida introduces a blog

Strida have today launched a blog as a means of proving new to owners and prospective owners. There are already a number of items of interest to owners there. You can find the blog at: href=" It's worth adding, while on the subject of the Strida, that there are a lot of useful FAQs and other information on the Strida web site. We have had a Strida on test since early this year - we don't use it very often, as it is really not well suited to rides of more than 5Km or so, but it is certainly extremely convenient for taking on trains, or into buildings - the quick fold and the ability to move it around very easily on its wheels when folded is excellent. We expect to see some Stridas at the December Origami Ride.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Strida to appear on the Gadget Show

The team on the Gadget Show are going to use a Strida as part of their attempt to cross a town. The gadget show on Channel 5 at 19.15 13th November 2006

Friday, November 03, 2006

Seoul Riders

The Korea Herald has an article on the popularity of the Han River leisure track, particularly with minivelo riders or jachuljok. Perhaps the locals in Seoul tend to fit a Strida better than I do.

Independent Thinking

It seems that James Daley, a writer for the motoring section of the Independent, has discovered folding bikes and the Folding Society. His not entirely enthusiastic but certainly amusing article concludes with "In fact, I would even go so far as to say that there may be a day when I have to bite the bullet and buy one myself. But I can promise you that I won't let myself fall in love with it, sign up to a Brommie fan club, or develop the Brommie affectation!" The article certainly seems to have caught the attention of the BromptonTalk e-list.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Cycle Magic 2006

A very entertaining film by "Arch" including small wheels, Brompton, trikes and tall bikes. View here