By Colin Walker
I have been exploring the possibility of buying a folding bike for some time. I live within cycling distance of a train station and although I work shifts, I occasionally hit the 'rush hours' when non-folding bikes are banned on the local train services. Being six foot four I wanted a big wheeled folder and eventually discovered the Dahon Espresso. This is a 21 geared mountain/hybrid style folder with 26" wheels, the frame folds in half and the handle bars tuck in, not the neatest or the most compact but train legal never the less. (According to Dahon this is the most compact full size folder).
I was very surprised by the ride, although I am slightly too tall (6'3" max) for the bike it rides as well as my Trek Hybrid, the gearing is ideal for the sharp hills where I live and is smooth and silent in operation. The Frame is sturdy and I have added some mudguards which don't interfere with the folding. The bike folds in about 30-40 seconds and needs a fair bit of pressure to secure the handle bars. The only problem so far has been the rather flimsy plastic chain guard which broke but was replaced by Dahon straight away.
Not a bad buy for £299.00!!!
You can find out more about Dahon at http://www.dahon.com and http://www.dahon.co.uk.
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Copyright (C)2003 Colin Walker
Last updated: 22 May 2003