Sunday, December 19, 2010

Small bikes in a big world

My boss on her Dahon Curve D3

Hitting the road with my Dahon Speed P8

When you invest on a folding bicycle, there are two sides of the coin.
You must know what you are getting into and if you are ignorant to the specifications of the bike, you might just end up purchasing a lemon.
To give you a better perspective, there are many variants of the folding bike with prices ranging from RM400 (cheap Le Run bike which you can never find off the shelves) to RM20K (high-end super-duper foldie).
In that respect, Michelle and I are owners of a basic (Dahon Curve D3) and medium range (Dahon Speed P8) bikes.
Over a course of one year and twelve months, I learned that there were plenty of shortcomings when I wounded up with an 8-speed bike.
The Speed P8 is excellen for short commutes and a leisure ride.
Now, here's the best part: Michelle and her 3-speed Dahon Curve D3 had proven than even sceptics can be wrong.
Her bike is a 16" foldie with an internal hub gear.
At the top end, she could go as fast as 15km an hour. That's it.
Our bikes can give distance, but not speed.
And when it comes to tackling hills, you've got to have legs of steel to pedal non-stop.
I learned this when we rode in Putrajaya.
Since I rode my Speed P8 more frequently, I noticed that my stamina has improved.
With the distance thrown in, the only aspect that we are looking at would be endurance training.
Not an issue if we ride regularly in areas with hills.
As for Michelle, I have plenty of admiration for her sheer spirit for riding the 3-speed bike in a series of long-haul events.
She proved to the larger bike riders that foldies can go literally 'anywhere'.
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