Author Topic: Which Brompton?  (Read 21202 times)

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #25 on: 06 June, 2008, 11:08:42 am »
I put Marathons on ours. They weren't a problem to fit. Never punctured.

You must have much stronger thumbs and wrists than I do.

I have had one puncture while I've been using the Marathons in about 4000 miles, I had become so blazé about it I'd stopped carrying a spare tube... Looking forward to the Marathon Plus in Brompton size :-)

Duncan

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #26 on: 06 June, 2008, 11:11:45 am »
Lots of options, most are good.

Mrs LWaB has a custom-shortened and flared extended seatpost to guarantee that it is the right saddle height every time.  I use a telescopic post for the same reason.

We both have T5s (pre-2000) but Mrs LWaB has the SP front derailleur mount and double chainrings, climbing the Col du Telegraph in 2005.  The SA shifter was replaced with a twistgrip.  She also has a modified stem, using a Post-Moderne seatpost with a flat bar to add some suspension to the front.  I fitted the handlebar brace to the modern M-bar to increase stiffness. Ritchey Logic brake levers and Scott/Matthauser pads compensate for my Saccon calipers, Mrs LWaB has paired dual pivots.  We both use short bar ends.  I run a SS Jubilee clip around the suspension block, I prefer the firmer ride, particularly when climbing out of the saddle.  We only use Brompton Yellow tyres now.

The front bags are an essential part of the Brompton 'system' IMHO.  The rear rack helps when 'trolleying', is more stable when folded and gives extra capacity but adds weight.  The flimsy dynamos were replaced with Nordlicht 2000s, the rear lights with Brompton's LED dynamo tailights, giving reliable light ever since.  The front lights are being upgraded with Ian H's offerings.

Pentaclips are the next tweak (along with new paint jobs and replacement swingarm pivots).  Eventually Ti bits are likely to appear (Mrs LWaB's mods add mass) but not for a while yet.

Eventually Brompton will start fitting the SA8 hub (or similar) to give a decent range of gears.  That is probably the last major improvement needed, for a while anyway.

I'd pick the M6L option in the meantime.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

rogerzilla

  • When n+1 gets out of hand
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #27 on: 06 June, 2008, 11:44:59 am »
Well, s/h S2Ls go for at least £350 on *bay (just been outbid again!) and even slightly ropey L3s command more than £300 unless the seller lives in the sticks and won't post, so it's better to get a new one through a Bike4Work scheme.  Annoyingly, I can't do this until January, probably the worst time of year to ride a bike.

The Dahon Curve is much cheaper, but spare parts are no doubt tricky to get, there's no real s/h value and it's probably made in Ungo-Bungo Land.
Hard work sometimes pays off in the end, but laziness ALWAYS pays off NOW.

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #28 on: 06 June, 2008, 11:53:48 am »
This front luggage lark... I'm mostly a backpack boy these days but don't want to kill my options.  Is it possible to retrofit the luggage block?
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Charlotte

  • Dissolute libertine
  • Here's to ol' D.H. Lawrence...
    • charlottebarnes.co.uk
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #29 on: 06 June, 2008, 11:54:38 am »
Yes, totally.

...and it's probably made in Ungo-Bungo Land.

You are Phil the Greek and ICMFP  :D
Commercial, Editorial and PR Photographer - www.charlottebarnes.co.uk

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #30 on: 06 June, 2008, 12:00:15 pm »
50 x 14 and 50 x 12 give a reasonable cruising and hurrying gear, if not a climbing gear.  Can you fit a 12T on a Brompton?

I'm not sure you can climb easily on a Brommie; the handlebars twist (although the S-type should be better) and, as someone who gets rear brake rub and ghost front changes on a conventional bike, I'm going to seriously twist that dinky rear triangle if I stand up.

Short answer to the gear question is 'no', the long answer is 'yes but it isn't easy or very durable'.  Go 54 x 13/15t instead.

Short (= dinky) structures are usually stiffer than longer ones and the steel chain and seatstays have fairly thick walls.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #31 on: 06 June, 2008, 12:05:08 pm »

I run a SS Jubilee clip around the suspension block, I prefer the firmer ride, particularly when climbing out of the saddle. 

Pentaclips are the next tweak (along with new paint jobs and replacement swingarm pivots). 

I use a jubilee clip too. Ooh! Didn't know the pentaclips existed...

If you're buying it on cyclescheme, don't forget to get a Brookes saddle while you can get it on the cheap.

Duncan

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #32 on: 06 June, 2008, 01:04:32 pm »
Wot's this pentaclip?
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #33 on: 06 June, 2008, 01:07:41 pm »
Wot's this pentaclip?
It's a converter from the single pole of the seat post to a double rail for saddles.
CLICKY bottom of page.

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #34 on: 06 June, 2008, 01:10:58 pm »
This front luggage lark... I'm mostly a backpack boy these days but don't want to kill my options.  Is it possible to retrofit the luggage block?
there's a braze-on for the block - can be fitted whenever you feel like it

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #35 on: 06 June, 2008, 01:25:19 pm »
Wot's this pentaclip?
It's a converter from the single pole of the seat post to a double rail for saddles.
CLICKY bottom of page.

So, um, it's a seat clamp.  Bloody expensive one.
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Zipperhead

  • The cyclist formerly known as Big Helga
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #36 on: 06 June, 2008, 01:51:47 pm »
Buy some Brompton-specific roller skate wheels off eBay for the rolley-wheels at the back, 'cos the plastic one aren't up to much.

Brompton do another set of wheels (the top item here).

They are still narrow (so don't snag your heels) but roll very well (too well in my case)
Won't somebody think of the hamsters!

rogerzilla

  • When n+1 gets out of hand
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #37 on: 06 June, 2008, 02:10:37 pm »
After a quick browse, I'd have

"S" type
Standard 2-speed gears; 56" and 74" are ideal
Optional paint colour, possibly apple green
Ti extended seat pillar
Stelvio tyres (I have these on the Frankendale and they're pretty good)
Fizik saddle
Cover bag thing
No folding pedal, because I'd put SPDs on it, which are already pretty small and non-pointy

Just shy of £700.
Hard work sometimes pays off in the end, but laziness ALWAYS pays off NOW.

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #38 on: 06 June, 2008, 03:19:50 pm »
"S" type
Standard 2-speed gears; 56" and 74" are ideal
Optional paint colour, possibly apple green
Ti extended seat pillar
Stelvio tyres (I have these on the Frankendale and they're pretty good)
Fizik saddle
Cover bag thing
No folding pedal, because I'd put SPDs on it, which are already pretty small and non-pointy

Not a bad spec, that.  I think I'm veering towards:

S-type with mudguards, no rack
The standard 2-speed looks fine
Barenaked metal (rock!)
I'll test-ride the seat pillars at LBS but it won't be Ti
Stelvios for teh sex
Bag because I'll regret not getting that even though I don't wanna

Questions:
Saddle's a questionable right now,  I have a spare B17; does the regular saddle come off?  :o
Can you fit Powergrips onto the regular folding pedals?

...and then exploit the Cyclescheme to get a roadie lid for tri's ;)
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #39 on: 06 June, 2008, 03:30:13 pm »
I got my Brompton with the Brooks saddle, which I have now robbed and put on my touring bike because I'm using it more often at the moment - so I can say with confidence that the regular saddle will come off - Brompton have a neat little clamp arrangement that sits on top of the seat post.

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #40 on: 06 June, 2008, 03:54:45 pm »
I've got a B (and I've done a 50k on it, although I'm not sure I would have cared for much more) which I got after having a second-hand one stolen. I'm working through the Brompton "Bike Explorer" on their Website here.

The S-type handlebars are elegant, but the S-type front bag is tiny. Conversely, with M-type bars you can use the Touring Pannier, which is the largest and therefore the best, and accomodates a laptop bag and clothes/books/etc for a weekend readily. In a stiff headwind I crouch.

I have a 3-speed because that was what the bike shop had and I didn't want to wait forever for a new one. However, if I was getting one custom-made, I'd dither between 2-speed and singlespeed. Nothing wrong with the 3-speed, but the B doesn't really need a huge gear range for urban riding.

Mudguards (duh!). The rear rack, however, doesn't accomodate many normal panniers, and so is as useful as a chocolate fireguard. I've got a huge Carradice saddlebag which can augment the Touring Pannier - and unlike stuff strapped to the top of the rear rack, a saddlebag can stay on the bike when you fold it up.

I need the extended seatpost and I am only 5'10".

I like a B-17 Narrow, so I have another Brompton plastic saddle in my heap of useless saddles.

Brompton Yellow tyres are perfectly satisfactory.

The non-folding LH pedal is a false economy.

I fitted SONs to both Bromptons, and I cannot imagine doing without. The standard B dynamo headlight does not have a standlight; however, a B&M Lumotec Plus (_not_ Oval Plus) just fits under the luggage block using the bracket SJSC sell for fitting Schmidt headlights to a B - or if you are incredibly flush, I imagine a Schmidt Edelux would so fit (but don't buy one just on my say-so). I also have a Cateye 3xAA backup rear light which conveniently can be fitted to the top of the seatpost just above the saddle clamp.

My old B had Kool-Stop Salmons, and so will the new one when it gets through a set of brake pads.

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #41 on: 06 June, 2008, 04:33:03 pm »
Conversely, with M-type bars you can use the Touring Pannier, which is the largest and therefore the best, and accomodates a laptop bag and clothes/books/etc for a weekend readily. In a stiff headwind I crouch.

That's the bag that I have. Carradice do a touring pannier to fit the Brompton block which might be worth looking at.

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #42 on: 06 June, 2008, 04:44:59 pm »
Most of those objections don't really apply to my requirements - this isn't a long haul Brommie, rather an always-handy Brommie. 

I'll have to do a triathlon on it at some point...
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #43 on: 06 June, 2008, 04:55:51 pm »
Most of those objections don't really apply to my requirements - this isn't a long haul Brommie, rather an always-handy Brommie.

So is mine (mostly) - but a laptop bag and a weekend's supplies for a trip to another city isn't so onerous a requirement.

I missed an option, the super-lightweights. I didn't bother because I never carry the B any distance anyway, just trundling it on the wheels; additionally part of the weight saving is a titanium pedal spindle, which unless you love your dentist might be a bad plan.

rogerzilla

  • When n+1 gets out of hand
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #44 on: 06 June, 2008, 08:13:44 pm »
ISTR that Keith Bontrager cautions against clearcoated steel on the basis that it WILL rust.  If clearcoat was actually impervious to moisture, you'd see it used more often - and, of course, any non-serious rust that starts under paint is hidden for a long time, whereas it sticks out like a sore thumb with clearcoat.

I'd want to see a clearcoated Brommie that's a few years old.

Hard work sometimes pays off in the end, but laziness ALWAYS pays off NOW.

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #45 on: 06 June, 2008, 10:59:14 pm »
In 04 we carried some Nude BMXs that were clearcoated.   One had indeed started to rust under the coat.

It looked fecking awesome.
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

Charlotte

  • Dissolute libertine
  • Here's to ol' D.H. Lawrence...
    • charlottebarnes.co.uk
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #46 on: 07 June, 2008, 01:04:07 am »
Questions:
Saddle's a questionable right now,  I have a spare B17; does the regular saddle come off?  :o

Yes.  And you can use any saddle you like on there if you have the majik Pentaclip.  I actually bought a Pentaclip as my 2nd hand Brommie was sporting an old-style saddle clip which wobbled.  As did the second one I tried.  The Pentaclip is beautifully made and is actually worth the £20 you pay for it, I reckon.

The Brooks Brompton saddle is just a B17 with big rivets and "Brompton" stamped into the logo.  Nothing special.


Can you fit Powergrips onto the regular folding pedals?

I doubt it.

Go with flat pedals, don't use clips or SPDs or anything.  It may seem like an anathema at first for a seasoned clipless user, but you'll grow to like it for the sheer convenience of the thing.  Sure, if you're going to audax or do a tri or something, whack some SPDs on for the day, but the whole point of a Brommie is that it can be ridden in street shoes and street clothes. 

At least try it this way first  :)
Commercial, Editorial and PR Photographer - www.charlottebarnes.co.uk

Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #47 on: 07 June, 2008, 02:26:03 am »
Can you fit Powergrips onto the regular folding pedals?
I doubt it.

The Amey Home Page is not the one I remember, but it's a good explanation of how to fit a toeclip.

That said, I agree with Charlotte that you should try it. I've ridden in clips and straps since I was about 13, and I still feel OK on the B without. Don't know why.

andygates

  • Peroxide Viking
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #48 on: 08 June, 2008, 04:45:07 pm »
I'll give it a go.

Today's LBS experimentation says "the regular seatpost at full extension is perfick" and "s-type rocks my world".  :thumbsup:
It takes blood and guts to be this cool but I'm still just a cliché.
OpenStreetMap UK & IRL Streetmap & Topo: ravenfamily.org/andyg/maps updates weekly.

rogerzilla

  • When n+1 gets out of hand
Re: Which Brompton?
« Reply #49 on: 08 June, 2008, 04:48:57 pm »
What's your inside leg, Andy, and did you try with SPDs (which I think add an extra cm or so)?   

Edit: are you going for 2-speed or 3-speed?  3 speed gives you fairly nice 46", 61" and 82" gears (with Stelvio tyres), a 1/8" chain and perfect chainline.  You also get fewer Brompton-only parts, which makes it easier for spares.  SA spares (control chains, sprockets, shifters) are really easy to get hold of, and the hubs are incredibly reliable.

On the other hand, 2-speed is over 1kg lighter and has no internal losses (although the most commonly-used 61" gear is direct drive on the SA hub and therefore slightly better than a derailleur system, given the chainline and lack of jockey wheels).  Hmm.
Hard work sometimes pays off in the end, but laziness ALWAYS pays off NOW.