Sunday, September 16, 2007

Dahon Curve D3


I really like the looks of this little bike. First off, it's red. Second, it folds into a pretty tiny package. Not quite as tiny as a Brompton, but pretty tiny. And at $400, it costs a lot less than a Brompton.
It looks like it folds quite quickly (15 seconds) and would work well for multi-modal trips (bike + bus, bike + train, or bike + plane). The specs here:

http://electricvehiclesnw.com/fbw/d-curve-specs.htm

look really good. I've always liked Sturmey Archer 3-speed hubs and Schwalbe Big Apple tires. And even though the pictures don't show it, the bike comes with fenders and a rear rack. And a final bit of niftiness is that the seatpost contains a built-in tire pump. Cool, eh?

Now, I've done a pretty good job of paring my bike stable down. In fact right now, my only bike is my 1987 green Gary Fisher. I don't need another bike now, do I? But maybe I'll stop by Folding Bikes West this week just to check out the shop. What could it hurt?

12 comments:

Wayne said...

It's a cool shop. It's great to see multiple folders side by side. (and of course, they also have the electric bikes there, if that happens to be your thing.)

Edward said...

Dahon's can come with shop work needed, so you might expect to spend some additional money up front to get this bike up to everyday use. My recent experience with a Hon Solo found the wheels badly built -- the front had to be rebuilt completely -- and the no-spider crank's single chainring is already coming loose. Dahon it seems leaves final assembly to the shop and maybe more than other makes. Kent could you let us know what you find in this regard?

Ed Felker

Byron said...

Seems like that seat post/pump would need a collar or hose clamp or some permanent indicator of the correct height so you could just drop it back in place without adjusting.

Tai-po said...

I just got a Dahon folder for my mom...of course I played with it for a week before I gave it to her. It was a $340 Speed D7. They're fun little bikes and roll along surprisingly well.

In an odd twist of events, I actually got the Dahon for free. I ordered it from Performance Bike and had it shipped to the store for pickup. It arrived horrifically beat up, so the shop had another one sent out to me and had the first one sent back to the mail order center. Well, the didn't charge me for the second one, and then made the mistake of refunding me for the first one.

Being an honest person, I called them up and described what happened to a customer service agent. I told her she was welcomed to charge me for the bike. She told me not to worry about it and just to check my credit card statement the next month to see if they figure out what happened.

Heck...I've called them once on it and asked them to take my money. If they don't want to, I'm not feeling compelled to call them again about this! Somewhere along the lines, they also messed up the math for the reward points and I netted 10 bucks.

Tai

Jim G said...

Uh-oh, Kent's got Newbikeitus again. It must be the time of year?

Did you see this on iBOB?

Mike C said...

Bromptons may be expensive, but I am of the opinion that you generally get what you pay for. I have beaten the ever-loving snot out of mine (~5 years of commuting my ~210-lb self in all weathers in the Northeast with very little maintenance). It currently needs the BB serviced or replaced and a new chain, and I probably ought to disassemble and service the rear hub too, but after that I fully expect it to go right back to taking all the abuse I throw at it for many years to come.

patrick said...

we had a couple of dahons for a few years while bike/train/bike transporting in the bay area. they are small, light, handy, and fold easily. But they are cheap and flimsy, and they wear out-- and they're cheap and flimsy enough that it's not worth fixing them when you can buy a new one for $400.

If I were going to buy another folder it'd be a Brompton, no question. But I agree, the Dahons are so economically tempting! And pretty.

Michael R said...

He's cleaned out the bike inventory. He's encountered a new to him bike. I smell bike fever.

Enjoy your new bike Kent!

Char said...

I have the folding bike, Bike Friday. Out of the 4 bikes I own, it's my favorite. It's built exceptionally well, fits me like a glove, handles loaded touring, it has real low gears to go up just about any hill/mountain. I would highly recommend one to anyone looking at getting a folder.

Daniel said...

I am considering a low price "Dahon" or the "Downtube" front suspension. I am leaning toward the Downtube because the model I am looking at comes with a Sturmey Archer 8 speed rear hub and a front suspension. Downtubes get good reviews on the Bikeforums.net. I do like the styling and the Big Apples of the Dahon Curve . The only drawback to a Dahon over the Downtube is that Dahon's tend to come with alot of proprietary parts. Downtube uses more standard bicycle parts.

davesdahon said...

Thanks for this posting, helped me when I was selecting a new bike. Went to the shop to buy a Curve D3 but ended up getting a Vitesse D7HG. Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

I have a Curve D3. It is a cheap introductory bike and the components are flimsy and can't take everyday riding. The seat pump is annoying because the orange tube is not secured inside the post very well and comes apart. You get what you pay for. I would make the investment in a Brompton if you are goin to use it everyday.

Another thing. The old seat pumps are not marked for correct seat height, too high and you will break the frame. I found out the hard way.

Cheap bike, but expensive waste of time fixing it.