Folding bike to go with folding roof - ifithelps
In a bid to get a bit fitter I'm now the proud owner of a Brompton folding bicycle.

And great joy, it fits - just - under the safety net in the boot of the CC3, which means I can run with the bike in the boot and the roof down.

Pleased about that, because I ordered the bike before Christmas, which was also before the CC3 was thought of, so there was no opportunity to try it.

Despite the credit crunch, there is still a wait of about 10/12 weeks for a factory order Brompton.

Mine's a six speed with carrier, mudguards and dynamo lights.

I've gone for pale green with dark green extremities.

Eh? Well, it is a country Brompton, rather than a town one, and the colours roughly match my caravan in leafy North Yorkshire.

First impressions after a couple of rides are good. Some people criticise the riding quality, but that is helped enormously by plenty of air in the (upgraded) tyres - about 100psi.

I bowled along with some mountain bikers for a stretch and kept up easily - the gearing gives the Brompton a fair turn of speed, despite the small wheels.

Speaking of which, I think it's Tarmac or hard-packed surfaces only, but since a canal towpath is the limit of my off-roading, that should not present a problem.

Some of the switchgear is not fantastic quality for a £700/£800 bike, and it's all Brompton's own so there's no chance of an upgrade.

Good news for 2009 is a decent saddle is now standard.

The best and cleverest thing about the Brompton remains the fold, which is still the neatest you can get at any price.

I test rode a perfectly serviceable Dawes which was about a third of a price, but it only really folded in half into a wedge shape and there's no way it would fit in the boot of the CC3 with the roof down.

I'm hoping this portability means I will carry the bike regularly in the boot this summer and it will get some use - we shall see.

I will close with a word of thanks to backroomer Bromptonaut who set out the options for various makes of folders in a very fair minded post in a thread before Christmas.

He's a Brompton fan, and now, so am I.

Ask Honest John

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