What are Folding Bikes?

What Are Folding Bikes

What Are Folding Bikes

Like the name suggests, a folding bicycle is a bicycle that can be ‘folded’ when not in use. This is done to facilitate easy transport and storage. Riders of folding bikes generally do ‘mixed-mode commuting’, which means that their commute requires them to ride the bicycle part of the way and carry it the rest of the way. For example, a person can ride the folding bike to the nearest subway station, carry it with him/her on the subway and ride it again once outside. Most public transportation systems around the world allow folding bikes to be carried as regular luggage.

Obviously, the design of a folding bike is different to that of a non-folding bike. Based on the placement of the hinges and the presence of breakaway components, folding designs can be broadly classified into half-fold, triangle hinge and breakaway mechanisms. There are other categories but these three are the most common. Due to more complexity in the design, greater number of parts and a more specialized market appeal, folding bikes are generally more expensive than their non-folding counterparts.

As the folding frames are usually made in only one size, folding bikes normally allow for greater adjustments than regular bikes. Seat-posts and handlebar stems often extend up to four times higher than on non-folders, to accommodate riders of most sizes. The wheels are generally small when compared to ordinary bikes. However, the wheelbase and the distances between the center of the bottom bracket, the top of the saddle and the handlebars are the same as regular bikes. As a result, folding bikes offer similar handling to non-folders.

What Are Folding Bikes

What Are Folding Bikes

Now a days, more and more folding bike manufacturers are designing bikes with regular sized wheels, for those buyers who want a regular riding experience and don’t mind compromising on folding compactness. However, smaller wheels are still the norm for their ease of carrying and storage.

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