Wish EBR would focus more on "Folding" the folding electric bikes...

Art Howland

New Member
Love the site and the reviews in general are excellent. The only thing missing in the review formula is not nearly enough time is spent folding the bike into its compact form and walking around with it folded. Have not seen a single folding bike review do that yet and its the raison d'être of buying a folding bike!

I'm thinking the test drive should include biking to train or bus stop, folding the bike, getting on the mass transit, get off the mass transit, unfold and go. Thoughts on weight, how manuverable it is in a crowd, etc. That's a folding bike review right there!
 

Nirmala

Active Member
I saw a more thorough discussion of just this feature on the recent Tern Vektron video review. It looks like that folder makes it very easy to "walk" the bike when it is folded, and even allows you to use a "walk" feature on the control while the ebike is folded to turn on the motor at low speed when walking up a hill or when the bike is heavily loaded
 

Ann M.

Well-Known Member
There's always more territory to cover; however, those are pretty good points @Art Howland when it comes to what makes a 'folder' a special ebike. Being a not so tall person myself, folding bikes are also nice from the perspective of balance with a motor + battery + stuff centered around a slightly smaller wheel size (20" - 24" for me). They're more nimble in handling and with some designs, more stable with more of the weight centered and lower than on an ebike with typical 26" + wheel.
 

TimJohn

Active Member
I have yet to see the folding bike of my dreams. Tern is very close but only with their Verge Si8 with most of the options I really like in a low maintenance bicycle. It would be great to see the following:

1) Yamaha electric motor - mid mounting
2) Shimano hydraulic brakes
3) Nexus 8 speed internal hub
4) Belt drive
5) Rack system like the Tern offers
6) Interfaced with apps - apple or android


...am I missing anything? Oh yes it definitely has to fold down to a length of at least 30-40 inches to fit in my car along side my other folder (Verge Si8).

Timothy
 

Dewey

Well-Known Member
I have yet to see the folding bike of my dreams. Tern is very close but only with their Verge Si8 with most of the options I really like in a low maintenance bicycle. It would be great to see the following:

1) Yamaha electric motor - mid mounting
2) Shimano hydraulic brakes
3) Nexus 8 speed internal hub
4) Belt drive
5) Rack system like the Tern offers
6) Interfaced with apps - apple or android


...am I missing anything? Oh yes it definitely has to fold down to a length of at least 30-40 inches to fit in my car along side my other folder (Verge Si8).

Timothy
Bosch rather than Yamaha but this European folder comes close https://www.gudereit.de/2019/fahrraeder/e-bike-line/e-bikes-line-detail/item/fahrrad/show/ec-40-foldo.html#fndtn-panelSpezifikationen
 

Ken M

Well-Known Member
Aren't folding bikes really consider a "last mile" transportation solution. If so, does an ebike really make sense for this kind of product. Virtually anyone can ride a mile or two without motor assist and the time savings from some extra speed isn't going to be significant.
 

TimJohn

Active Member
Yes, but I like to do some local VRBO's and taking the bikes for day trips around some of our beautiful local islands (Gulf islands, San Juan, and Vancouver Island) makes for a nice rides around these places.
 

Ken M

Well-Known Member
Yes, but I like to do some local VRBO's and taking the bikes for day trips around some of our beautiful local islands (Gulf islands, San Juan, and Vancouver Island) makes for a nice rides around these places.
Those sound like fairly long touring rides which would be much more comfortable on a full sized fast ebike. I certainly understand the appeal of a folding bike for those using mass transit or frequently / always having a bike in the trunk or stored on an RV but a folding bike / ebike is just not a good long distance ride experience (in my opinion anyway). I'm just get a good touring / urban ebike and a good rack for your day trips....and then you have a bike you can do anything from your home on as well (connect a trailer and take it grocery shopping for example).

If I were looking for true portability in a folding bike I'd get one of those cool titanium framed folding bikes (no motor) but insist that is still have tires at least 20" in diameter for performance, comfort, & safety.
 

harryS

Well-Known Member
We've folded our folders three times. Took them down to Florida twice in a minivan. On the way back, I found there was more usable space if I left them unfolded. They're kind of busy to pedal if you ride them w/o a motor, but motored up I like the ride.

Ha ha. My dream folder doesn't fold or come apart like a Bike Friday. Make it light. A hub motor works. Maybe a front suspension. 8-10 AH battery inside frame with jack to plug in an external pack. Mechanical brakes.
 

TimJohn

Active Member
A folding bike is great for holidays when travelling somewhere on a road trip. Since there are two of us and don't have a large motorhome or gas guzzling vehicle like a big room van or motorhome then two folding bikes that fit into my Scion xB are ideal. The islands around here are within 1/2 day drive and they are very, very hilly. A larger size EV bike is not very convenient for obvious reasons. Size, pedal assistance, ease of transporting are my criteria for an electric bike. I can fit two of them in my vehicle.
 

trainman

Member
From what I see folding ebikes are not for everyone, weight and folding size when folder is what I'm talking about here. Everyone doesn't have the same strength for their size and body structure, take my sister, she is 5"5" and 110 lbs., she can lift the side of a barn and a 68 lb. Rad Mini is no problem for her to put it in the back of a pickup bed, where others might not ever be able to lift 68 lbs. So what I'm saying here lift test on folding ebikes is pretty much useless in videos as no two people can lift the same weight, for one it maybe easily done and for the other it can be impossible to do. If you are wanting a folding ebike you best get some hands on experience and not go by what you see in videos, not that they are misleading, but some people are just stronger then others and make it look easy.
 

harryS

Well-Known Member
Since I replied back in May, "we" added a folding 20" fatbike to the collection. It's like a Radmini, only about 800 bucks less money. It's longer, taller, heavier than out small folders. At 60+ pounds, I won't risk another bout of sciatica trying to lift it. Haven't touched the hinge latch. I'd put these bigger folders into a different category. It's an OK bike, and when people visit, I have a loaner bike for heavier riders, but the "folding" part only is true if you have that pickup or an RV.

41177
 

Avni

New Member
I got a Radmini about a month ago. At 68 pounds (plus..) it's not the kind of folding bike that you'll ride to your destination, then fold up and carry around with you all day.
But it is the kind of bike that I can fit in the back of my Subaru without folding the seat down which expands my biking radius tremendously. (I wasn't eager to put a bike rack on this leased car). So folding was a game changer for me, and I'm very happy with any compromises this has engendered so far (a bit more creaky than a non-folding bike...)
Note that this is in an Impreza, the small Subaru!
 

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trainman

Member
I got a Radmini about a month ago. At 68 pounds (plus..) it's not the kind of folding bike that you'll ride to your destination, then fold up and carry around with you all day.
But it is the kind of bike that I can fit in the back of my Subaru without folding the seat down which expands my biking radius tremendously. (I wasn't eager to put a bike rack on this leased car). So folding was a game changer for me, and I'm very happy with any compromises this has engendered so far (a bit more creaky than a non-folding bike...)
Note that this is in an Impreza, the small Subaru!
We take our Rad Mini Step Thur's with us camping, we carry them in the back of our 2019 Ram pickup. We do lift them up in the back of the pickup bed, me on the bikes heavy side and the wife on the other, it's a 4 ft. lift to the bed floor and I probably do 75% of the lifting, thus the wife just helps balance to bike when I lift. Were in our 70's and I find lifting the bike no problem, but if on down the line this becomes a problem we will do it some other way. I do remove the batteries, so were only lifting about 60 lbs., so far so good.