What makes a good quality folding bike? What’s the difference between a good one and a cheap one? Those who are new to the folding bike world will definitely have questions like these on their mind. There are many things that separate a cheap folding bike from a premium one. You might not be able to tell at first glance when visiting a bicycle shop in Singapore. Many of the cheaper ones are getting better at copy the look of a premium, good quality foldie. So you have to be extra careful when deciding on your folding bike.
Firstly, before even deciding on a bike, you need to decide on a good bike shop. With nearly a bicycle store in every estate in Singapore, this will take some effort. Do your due research though, as they will be where you buy your folding bike and bring it for servicing. A good folding bike seller will have a long history with selling folding bicycles. A great example will be Mighty Velo. With over 15 years of experience in folding bikes, you know you will be getting quality advice. Mighty Velo also provides high-quality servicing and after-sales support. Every folding bicycle from them comes with two years warranty on frame and one year warranty on parts. They also have a team of skilled technicians who will help you with servicing your folding bike and teaching you about the workings of a folding bicycle.
Once you’ve decided on a good place to buy a folding bike, its time to look for a good brand. With various brands out there, you become overwhelmed. Here are a few things you should look out for when choosing. First, check the history of the brand. Good folding bike brands have had at least 10 or more years of history behind them. From their conception to evolution, look at every detail when making a decision. Also look out for brands that are German, Taiwanese or Japanese made or designed. The best foldable bikes come from these three countries. You can expect a whole other level of craftsmanship and quality than from a foldable bike made in China.
When you are searching online and comparing folding bikes, there are a few things to look out for. The frame will be the first thing you will notice. The overall structure and build of a folding bike frame is important. And you will definitely notice the difference between a cheap and premium one. A good quality folding bicycle will have a sturdy frame, preferably made of aluminium. This is because aluminium doesn’t rust and is lighter than say a steel frame.
You should also look out for single weld frames. A single welded frame is more rigid and gives less flex. A good foldable bike brand that has this kind of frame is Birdy. The Birdy third-gen bikes come with single welded aluminium monocoque frames. They are designed in such a way for max rider comfort. They provide very little flex as compared to a cheaper jointed steel frame bike.
Another thing that riders would want to consider is frame colour. A good folding bike comes with a variety of frame colours. This gives cyclists the option to express themselves in their bikes. The Birdy bikes at Mighty Velo come in 17 vibrant and unique frame colours. Some of these colours have been specially customised for the Singapore and SEA market. Cyclists who buy from us also have a wide variety of colour choices for parts. Matching your frame with custom parts is the ultimate customisation dream for more experienced riders.
The second thing a cyclist should look out for is the derailleur. A good derailleur separates good bikes from the average ones. The minimum gears you will find on a good folding bike derailleur is 8. Any less and you’re going to be struggling on those steeper surfaces. You also won’t be able to keep up with your road bike buddies if you have less than 8 speeds on your folding bicycle.
The Birdy bikes we sell start off from 8 speeds and go all the way up to 24. A good all-rounder model would be the Birdy GT, which has 10 speeds. This should be enough to get you over most steep terrain while still allowing you to speed along straits.
One of the most important aspects of a folding bike is its tyres. As they are meant to be folded, folding bike tyres are smaller than a road bike. Most come with tyres that are smaller than 16”. These folding bikes will have a more compact fold, but won’t be good for riding more than a few kilometres. A good model will come with at least 18” tyres.
The larger tyre size will allow for less pedaling to reach your destination. A folding bike with 18” tyres will also provide more cushion for the rider. This is because the tyres are larger. There are various tyres made for various riding styles. Slicker tyres for road riding and those which are more threaded for light off-road riding. Finding a folding bike where you can interchange tyres is also crucial if you plan to ride on different terrains.
The Birdy bikes all coming with 18” tyres minimum, with the R20 being the only one with 20” wheelset. Each of the 18” models tyres can be interchanged with the other, so you can make the bike truly your own.
So now you know a bit more about what sets a good folding bike apart from a cheap one. If you’re looking to get a quality folding bicycle, check out our online store at shop.mightyvelo.com! If you have any questions about folding bikes or cycling, do email us at [email protected]. Start your cycling lifestyle with us today!