Wonderful story. Thanks for sharing. We should all hope we are out riding when we reach 93 years old. I sure hope i will be.
It’s great to hear about this type of brainstorming. I work in new product development myself (though not for bikes), and it is wonderful. I just hope the same brainstorming is being applied to BF’s marketing and distribution. In Boston, I have been delighted to notice small-wheeled bikes turning up everywhere – finally, people are realizing that compact bikes can make cycling a great option for urban commuting. But almost all those bikes are Dahons, because that’s what the downtown bike shops stock. Dahon has its place – I owned one once – but there are a lot of people who would be blown away if only they had the chance to try a tikit.
Just to set the record straight, a unicycle is a direct drive.
Regarding hills, Bailey Hill is a wee beastly. Last time I did it fixed I was second up with the Bike Friday lunch ride.
Gimpl Hill, on the other hand: always first.
I always feel faster on the flats, too, assuming an appropriate gear & cadence. There’s a simple reason: the wheel wants to keep turning forward despite gravity’s pull downward. A standard wheel just coasts.
I think the appropriate term is conservation of momentum.
Bottom line: there’s a lot more logic to fixed gears than people assume.
OK, direct drive. My bad. I’m just the marketing guy.
But people, do you see the knowledge our Bike Consultants wield? I learn something new every time I listen to them. It’s worthwhile to call.
Nice article. I’d like to know how your llama is set-up compared to mine and maybe a map link or similar reference to give me ideas of places to go? I haven’t used mine much for trail riding and it’s way too flat around here for a whole lot of that anyway. I do like the idea of opening my llama and me up to a whole new set of adventures.
Nothing really special about my Llama for trail use aside from the Thudbuster seatpost and Big Apple tires. The Llama itself has a higher bottom bracket for more clearance on the trail and can take the wider tires up to 2.25.
Where are you located? The trail I rode is in Oregon.
Really enjoy the fresh layout. I really liked the content. Many thanks for a great posting.
Merle’s art has been gracing the covers of my zines for years–and his cute comics have found a place inside my publications as well. Whether it’s a Great Blue Heron, a Harley, or an exasperated marsupial, Merle can draw it all.
Unfortunately, the Like function is not hooked up to our blog at this point. One of the things we’re working on.
Love hearing these stories. Great photos.
I haven’t ridden fixie in over two years ago now, but this series of posts has got me itching for it again.
I don’t have a Tikit (yet), so I’m curious what happens when the bike is folded and rolled around? Actually, looking again at a photo, the bike is rolled on its front wheel, huh?
It rolls on the front wheel, and rather easily. Simple, just like a fixie.
Bring back purple! ( You guys KNOW this already right?)
Ditto on the purple. Purple rules!
Dear Friday Family:
Just a note to anounce the proud owner of #1249 is alive, well – and still enjoying the New World Tourist my wife Winnie gave me as a retirement gift in 1994. Guess I was among the early members of the Friday fraternity. I have only positive memories of rides and countless miles in Ohio, New York, Indiana, Florida – and now North Carolina – and of course, one of the coolest treats is responding to inquisitive fellow riders and pedestrians about the Friday family.
Dr. Jerry Hopfengardner
YES, Please bring back the PURPLE before my custom Pocket Llama is RASPBERRY finalized in Autumn!
…. “I’m just saying”
If you guys are in Portland, you should make the trip up to Victoria! Those look like awesome traveling bikes and we’d love to have ya!
Thanks for sharing this Steve. Those of us in the factory send these bikes out into the world hoping they’ll facilitate experiences like yours.
When news gets out that the new metallic electric purple with tiny little sparkly bits in the paint has arrived at Green Gear, i see a convoy of Llamas and Tikits slowly, purposefully moving towards the factory, all eager to be re-sprayed in the color they should have been the first time around, Best to just simplify things and set up a PURPLE production line! It’ll make things much easier in the long run.
Nice to see some else with a Bike Friday enjoying the nice weather that the north island NZ has been having — enjoy your training rides
Dude! it’s PP
I’m waiting for the bike bike friday sent to Thailand
Glad you liked the photo!
Do you have a link to more?
Just Max is ok 🙂 I’m from Thailand also. We don’t usually use nickname in place of firstname when writing it with lastname. So either just Max, or Chaowaroj Wanotayaroj. I’m not upset or anything, just a FYI.
For the record, I didn’t get a chance to pass many, but I enjoyed every moment of it when I got one 😀
Now I want either a bigger chainring or an alfine 11 for my next (hopefully half-ironman) tri. Don’t wanna spend too much getting a new bike.
@patiphan à¸‚à¸à¹ƒà¸«à¹‰à¸‚à¸µà¹ˆà¸ªà¸™à¸¸à¸à¸™à¸°à¸„à¸£à¸±à¸š 🙂
My apologies. I will fix that. Thanks again for making Bike Friday look good!
No problem. I actually think it’s painful for the reader to see my full name all the time so I thought you’re gonna change it to Max everywhere. Well, it’s fine either way.
Congrats on a great ride, Dolores! I am very impressed.
Just wanted to add my congrats on a great summer of travel! I know someone locally who road a ways along the big sur area with you and he was impressed as am I. Thanks for sharing too. Wonder what your next ride will be?
Thanks for sharing your summer of adventure with us! I’m very impressed!
Wait 40 more years Carol and I’ll be happy to race against you!!!
Sheesh, if only…
You are an inspiration!!
This Tandemonium Band Practice is wonderful.
After being married for over 27 years and owning a tandem for 26 – I can attest to the bonding power of a ‘bicycle built for two’. Our first years of marriage without children saw lots of riding on an old, 5-speed tandem. We talked, shared experiences and enjoyed riding as hard or as little as we liked together and never got separated on a trail. When children came along, we added a Burley D-Lite trailer and proceeded to wear it out over four children and 12 years of use. When the children moved on to their own bikes, we have upgraded to a Family Tandem. Now it goes where we go in town and when traveling. It’s been an awesome bike and we still get lots of looks as we ride the bike “with the funny little wheels” past children, teenagers and adults. It’s been a delight to ride and Bike Friday has truly made themselves our sole source supplier by the bend-over-backwards attitude! Keep it up!
We’ll expect Prismatic Purple soon then! 🙂 keep working on that!
Your personal crusade: Purple. Love it.
Can’t help it, I’m a designer. I Like exotic colors. Might settle for Black Narcissus.
That would be black with little sparkly bits in it 🙂
For now I’m enjoying my new Season Tikit in Merlot.
Test rode the Tikit at Portland Sunday Parkways. Amazing little machine. I must have ridden 20 miles starting at 11am (getting things set up and checking on logistics), on the tour with folks from all around the Portland region who are thinking of bringing Sunday Parkways to their town, out to Cully to check on the traffic plan, and then back to the Durham Marketplace at the very end of the day. Everyone wanted to look at the bike, but most of all, it was an incredibly good ride. I wasn’t fatigued, and it felt like I was riding my “regular” bike – only better. Love the ease of getting on and off and that it is so light-weight. Thanks to Rez for setting me up. You rock!
Our pleasure, and thanks for creating such a great event. We love coming up to Portland any chance we get.
Thanks for the mention! The trip was great and I was really impressed with how well Samara kept up in spite of the smaller wheels. She even passed me a few times and I was on my entry-level racing road bike! Thanks for letting us borrow the bike, you might have to pry it out of Samara’s hands when she returns it =]
I have tears in my eyes from reading the Hailey bike build blog.
Way to go you guys!
I knew there was more to Bike Friday when I bought my Pocket Lllama. I didn’t just fall in love with the quality of the ride or the fit or the color; I fell in love with Bike Friday the company.
Keep up the good work(s)!
Thanks for the wonderful words. We attempt to put our heart and soul into every Bike Friday we build. That, you can count on.
Awesome story. I just found this and yes I like to read your stories. I gotta say I am not a reader however when I start to read your writing it sucks me in.
Thanks RAZ I enjoyed the story as well as the photos!
This tour was awesome! Beautiful weather, flat eastern NC roads, and of course my favorite bike – the Tikit! Riding my Tikit takes me back to a time when riding a bike was purely for fun. The fact that it folds is simply icing on the cake. First and foremost, it’s an awesome bike that rides as good or better than my traditional bikes. I plan to ride this puppy until the wheels fall off!
Hi, are you planning to offer the NuVinci as an option for the ordinary consumer? Why did all the people who trialled it like the NuVinci so much? is it not too heavy?
Thanks in advance, Doug Austin
NuVinci is available on the tikit, New World Tourist and Pocket Llama. Simply talk to a Bike Consutant.
The NuVinci hub weighs about 5 pounds, but most people who ride it find that its advantages far outweigh, literally in this instance, its weight.
When you are riding, the weight is displaced so you can’t feel. It might come into play with a tikit if you are folding and lifting a lot. However, I rode the NuVinci in New York and had no trouble lifting it to get into the subways, etc.
Thank you Rob; I have now a little more feel for what is behind my Pocket Rocket Pro Custom. Having in my teens seriously competed in Southern California and made it to the nationals, it seems that acquired riding refinement and love of attention of details in equipment never leaves one, and therefore, that need is satisfied in my Bike Friday while also opening many new opportunities for extended use. I must confess that when out riding it, I start testing my snap, and find it to be there, and it feels right to kick out of the saddle (racing lingo) – I was not expecting that. When assessing stiffness (in riding position putting force on pedals with wheels locked and observing amount of pedal travel) there appears a fair amount of flex, but, what with the very long stem in the power line, I accepted that as a compromise. If you have been that successful in completive in hill climbing, obviously however, the bike does not compromise power transfer. Although I possess a good level of technical riding development, in use of my PRP I wish to suggest to others considering the compact chain ring set 50/34 with the Capero 26-9 to be right on target for gearing for sport riding. I tend to ride a high cadence with 170mm cranks. Is nice to have those two lowest gears from the 34 chainring when the hills get extreme, or when pulling a loaded trailer; and spinning in the 50/9 is actually very well as fast as I ever want to go on this bike. Riding just the big chainring and skipping along through the 10 Capreo cassette cogs works very well.
In cooler weather, I like to kind of tweed up on my PRP, but not slow down. Waving to passing riders in the other direction, I chuckle at the sense I get that they seem to not know just how to respond: where does this rider, dressed in knickers on that shinny small wheel bike with drop bars, fit in the scheme of things? I think I want to go out and ride now.
WOW!!! I am so inspired!! Thanks for the great write-up Rob! I have never owned a BF and have only been riding regularly in Feb this year. I wanna get a BF soon so I can maybe do a little touring with it. But I am still not sure which BF model I should be getting. Any advise?
The choice of bike for touring depends on your destination, load and type of roads expected. Personally, I travel light (about 25lbs of gear with camping stuff), and relatively fast, and have done all my touring (Europe, US, NZ and Australia) on my Pocket Rocket. I have found the 1-1/8″ tires suitable for gravel and dirt roads as well as paved surfaces. If you are carrying more weight (which I would question; so many people carry far too much stuff!), then the wider tire options of the 406 wheelsize on the NWT and Llama would be a better choice. And if you will be in more remote locations, this tire size is commonly available, whereas the 451 size from the PR is harder to find.
I have toured on several different bicycles, and have found the PR to be by far the best. The small, stiff rear triangle gives little or no pannier ‘wag’ to the back of the bike, whilst the long cantilevered seatmast provides a degree of passive suspension for comfort in the saddle. Likewise the curved stem will take the edge off road vibrations being transmitted to the handlebar. The small wheels are inherently stronger than larger ones, so with a sturdy set there is no worry about broken spokes. The only downside could be tire wear, but it is easy to carry a spare (when I rode cross country I chose to use fast tires (Schwalbe Stelvios), and wore out the rear tire in 1600 miles. I carried a spare and had BF ship me additional tires part way).
Generally on point to point tours I fly in with the bike in the travelcase, then mail the case to my destination, then it is ready for the trip home when I get there. If you tour on a BF, just be prepared to answer the small wheel questions everytime you stop to refuel!
There are details of my various trips, and a kit list of everything I carry on my website at: http://rob.bikerevuk.com
needs more red. (too blue)
I love BF. This is not purple.
naw..pretty but too blue. Purple needs to be PURPLE!!! More like Merlot.
i like it… is it available for all fridays or just the tikit?
It is not available on any bikes. Yet. We are testing various purples as a possible new color for 2012.
Jinx, jokes, you owe me a coke!
I sent this earlier…it said it had to be moderated and now has disappeared?
NOPE !….A real Deep Purple….like the skin of an Egg Plant would be cool. This one looks like some bubble gum I bought as a kid.
Not actually a true purple – like the paint you had to discontinue. However, is a pastel, and pastels are good – both toned and bright. You are on the right track – extraordinary colors for an extraordinary bike; this color says just that. I could go for a bright pastel lime.
If my dog gets “away” with it .Why can’t I ?
As others said this probably isn’t what people have in mind when they think of purple. It’s too ‘ milky ‘ looking. Doesn’t do a Bike Friday justice because it’s too toy looking. Something a BIT darker perhaps. The color needs to have more depth. More Angelina Jolie and less Lady GaGa. 🙂
To add to Performance that packs….Fitness that Folds!
At about $1,000 per pound reduction, it should fly.
Said the Bike Friday: Anything you can do I can do better…
it will be great if you can show how you connected the chariot to the Bike Friday. I have that problem at the moment an couldn`t find a good solution with any Weber hitch. Which hitch do you use?
Thanks a lot
Very nice article and great photos!
Thank you for shairng the adventure. Your spirit for exploration and discovery comes out in the story, and brings to mind my own passion for riding. I love the fact that Bike Fridays are made in the USA, and in Eugene, OR not less. I’m very interested in trying a Bike Friday. It’s on my list of things to do when the weather gets better!
Every time I view BF pics, I have thoughts of moving to OR. Absolutely beautiful scenery surrounding a BF bicycle.
I enjoyed the black Llama pic with the “dirty tires”… IMO it sells “the BF Image” better than if the bike was clean. Instead of displaying a “showroom queen” in the middle of no-where!
…. And one can never go wrong with a dog. I really like the “Ridgely w/ the Llama folded” pic.
I look forward to installment #2.
Looks wonderful! Bring it to Phoenix. It’s great riding this time of year and we and our RV and Tikits are having a blast
Miss you all. Bobbi
Hi Mr Yang,
It must be very beautiful places and scenery to cycle with your Bike Friday. Must have enjoyed the trip. Hope to have the chance to ride with you someday. I just got my pocket companion bike recently and also enjoyed riding the bike. I am from Singapore and like to have this opportunity to cycle Taiwan, such a beautiful place.
Seah Yong Sen
What brand is the triangular bag? I have been hunting for a nice way to store clothes on my Air Glide and this looks great.
The bag is a new design for Bike Friday by Alan Scholz that should be available later this year. Stay tuned for more information,
When you decide to upgrade to something new I want first dibs!
Question, though: Until Rob English & Co. put together something even MORE outrageous, is an upgrade possible?
And even if/when they do engineer something (assuming Hanna is anything like my daughter as a business person), how are you going to get it out the door past your capable General Manager? Being a “founder” has its privileges; but when Pocket Rockets reach that level of sophistication you may be pushing a savvy, well-trained business gal’s limits. . .
I am very impressed by your tour, and on top of that by the shoes you show on a picture, which apparently use two soles!!!
Can you tell us where you found them, because they look very appropriate for this type of voyage. Thanks.
Still looking to get a Bike Friday
0.5 to 1.6 is only a span of 320% (1.6/0.5). My Air Friday with Rohloff hub (525% range, distributed in 14 gears at uniform 13% steppings) gives a range of approx 22 gear-inches up to a nice tall 115 gear-inches. Oh to have a Gates carbon drive….. drool, drool…. Roll-on Rohloff!!
Correction: NuVinci => 1.8/.5 = 360%
But that still doesn’t approach the 525% of the Air Friday’s 14-speed Rohloff hub which is such a sweet machine that it’s often hard to decide between the Air/Rohloff and the full-size LiteSpeed/Campy alternative….. Roll-on Rohloff !!
From Rob English:
Because the Rohloff is mostly underdrive (direct drive is gear 11), the gear range you have now can’t be matched. With 60×20 (the biggest Gates gear ratio) on 406 wheels the Rohloff gives 16″ to 84″. Plus, of course, we don’t currently have a 20″ bike that will accept the belt drive, and on the tikit with 16″ wheels the range drops to 13″ to 70″.
That doesn’t look such a bad range of gearing for a hilly commute. What we’re looking for now is a Gates/Rohloff set-up on a New World Tourist. It’s a design problem that needs to be solved.Go to it! If you can manage it I’m up for two next year.
Oh, rest assured we are working on a solution to make belt drives an option for our Pocket bikes, too.
FROM ROB ENGLISH:
This issue with the 20-inch wheeled Pocket bikes is having a unified rear triangle for the belt, but then still enabling the bike to fit in the suitcase without removing the rear wheel. There just isn’t room! Alan and I have been discussing possible new designs to achieve all the goals, but I can’t put a timeline on when development will go further.
I suppose Bike Friday’s philosophy is that every bike should pack easily for travel. But we only travel with our BF tandem. We use Pocket bikes for commuting because they’re nimble, compact, lightweight, and high performance, and you can throw them in a trunk if you have a flat or mechanical breakdown. For non-tikit commuters, carbon drive would be great, and we’d be willing to accept compromises on packability and folding speed. I can understand if that’s too far out of the BF mainstream, though.
What would be involved in retrofitting a carbon belt and variable drive to my Bike Friday?
I’ll have Rob address this question as soon as possible.
FROM ROB ENGLISH:
Currently the belt drive is only available on the tikit. To retrofit on a currently owned frame would require at minimum a new rear triangle, plus the rear hub, wheel rebuild and the belt drive parts. It may be a better option to trade in an older tikit and get a completely new belt drive NuVinci bike.
What do these components look like? Pictures please.
NuVinci news release
Gates news release
This issue with the 20-inch wheeled Pocket bikes is having a unified rear triangle for the belt, but then still enabling the bike to fit in the suitcase without removing the rear wheel. There just isnâ€™t room!
I have an Air Friday, and packing it in a suitcase has always required removing the rear wheel. So why is this a big deal? Fixing a puncture also requires removing the wheel. It has to be easy … is that the design problem?
I’m also used to packing an Air Friday so as long as there’s a way of dropping the wheel out and re-tensioning on replacing it, packing into the case would be no extra hassle. However, I do use the quick fold + beam removal when packing into a soft bag for train travel. I guess the quick fold would be less quick but if the other design problem (removal and re-tensioning) was solved (presumably an eccentric bottom bracket and/or re-designed dropouts won’t work, I could cope with the extra inconvenience in order to have Rohloff and Gates. And as I get older that 16 inch gear is looking attractive.
Hi, clearly I’ll have to wait for my next Friday to get a belt. Right now, if I’m stuck with a chain, I was wondering if you have any nuvinci built up wheels I can buy to replace my Sachs 3×7 wheel on my circa 1999 bike. I would likely have to get an eccentric BB or a single speed conversion chain tensioner. Have you guys been involved in such a project?
We’ll see what Rob has to say.
I just read about the bag. It sounds like a neat idea.
A quick website recommendation …
Could you increase the resolution on the pictures? Many people — old owners as well as potential owners — attempt to look for details on the bikes or new items and the relatively low resolution photos make discerning anything meaningful difficult.
Thanks for your time and consideration.
hope you make it to ABFC Inc before long to tell your stories.
Our blog is at:
I was there! A big thank you to Chris for the excellent adjustment to my disk brakes. Glad to see you all at Sunday Parkways and hope you make some more of them.
Nice article Raz. What would it take to convert a Pocket Crusoe with a SRAM internal 3×9 to NuVinci?
We’ll turn to Rob English for an answer, and get back to you as soon as we can.
Here’s the word from head designer Rob English:
You would need a new rear wheel with the NuVinci hub (which includes the
shifter), then you could use the existing rear derailleur as a tensioner. This assumes
you already have flat bars or H bars, since the NuVinci shifter won’t fit on drops.
Thanks Rob. Leaving the long cage derailleur on seems like a shame. Does replacing it with something more purpose-built introduce other complications?
One of our four select bikes is the New World Tourist Infinity Tour NuVinci and so far all those who have test-ridden this bike have commented on the quietness and ease of changing the “gears.” I am going on a 200 km tour with 10 other riders and can’t decide which of the demo select bikes I’ll take: the Llama, Pocket Rocket, Future’s belt-drive Tikit or the NWT NuVinci. I guess for the new and wow factor the NWT NuVinci is great, but for overall comfort, the Llama with Disc brakes and Big Apple tires would be better. But your article has made me think that the NuVinci might be the one. Thanks for your insights. Keep them coming, Raz.
Quick note to everyone that Doc Andy is our dealer in Malaysia, thus he’s a kid in a candy store. I personally own a Llama, sans disc brakes, but the New World Tourist with the NuVinci is sweet. You can’t go wrong.
Indeed, I feel like a kid in a candy store. However my own tikit is out of the question as I think bigger tires are better. Pros and cons:
1. Llama, large frame is my size, at 6 ‘ and 220 lbs. easier to sell a less-used demo.
2. New, smooth nuvinci hub, has attachments for the trailer., medium frame nit big enough for me?
3. Pocket Rocket–light and fast, have 3 requests to borrow for races, but if used would not be an ideal demo for short test-ris.
4. Future Tikit–belt drive means lighter weight, but disappointed no hyperfold.
So the ride is this weekend, advised not to take my family tandem traveller and can’t take a recumbemt trike, Azub Tricon, so I am leaning to the Llama or NWT. What will it be?
I’m impressed! I think I would stick to the part of the trail around Belknap Hot Springs (smoother and well… right next to the hot springs). You should try out Flat Creek in Oakridge. I think the Pocket Llama would do really well on that trail.
Good point. The lower portion of the McKenzie River Trail is very rider friendly. I’ll have to check out Flat Creek. Oakridge has plenty of great trails.
are you ever coming to the Washington DC area?
Actually, the past two years on our way to New York we have stopped to visit our dealers Mt. Airy and College Park.
I totally agree. I recently took delivery of a tikit with a nuvinci hub and it is an amazing ride. I call it my tikit2infinity
I was sent your link from Aubrey from the Als Oregon foundation. I have been recently diagnosed and as a result I bought a nice bike and am riding in the ALS ride on the 14th, while I still can. I am attempting the century.
Me, I am 48. 2.5 years ago I decided my former athletic self was sick and tired of being non-athletic and began to work out regularly and eat “better”. I lost 50lbs in 6 months and am still doing the same.
I honestly think God gave me that chance to get my crap together before I face the full fury of this disease. I am in the best shape of my post 30 year old life and would not like to imagine my body trying to compensate as it does try to with the additional weight and poor conditioning.
I still work out most every day…so far. Though I have toned it back a bit. I have my peeps and I love the circuit class I attend. It allows me to get a great workout both on my body, and my mind as I can taunt/tease/interact with the rest of the people there. This will be something I surely miss going forward, when it happens.
Your story touches me and I want to reach out to you. I think I know what you have been and are going through. When people say they will pray for me, I am grateful, and always ask them to also pray for my family. Whom will go through Hell and then have to get on with their lives after all…
Good luck to Xiangyu! I have been riding my Pocket Sport in Shanghai since last November, and although there are tons of folding bikes here (mostly cheap Dahons in various states of disrepair), I have yet to see another BF.
My experience corroborates Alan’s advice. Years ago I drove a pace car for local club races in Brooklyn. The racers were divided into the Cat 1, Cat 2, through 5. It was a very cemocratic group; bike messengers on their day off to investment bankers and lawyers. The bikes ranged from dumpster specials with no two parts of the same brand name to $2,000 “wonder bikes” (this was in 1992, when a $2,000 bike was a rare object of beauty). There was no correlation between the rider’s place in the peleton and the fanciness of his bike. Also, universally, the first upgrade was a good set of wheels and tires (in those days tubulars still ruled).
I needed a headset tool for my Bike Friday in Cuba on a recent trip. I was about to have a metalworker I had met there in 2002 make me one, but was able to work things out with a pipe wrench and a big crescent, both of which took a long time to find!
I like the “incremental” concept. I assume that if I buy a Bike Friday, that you can upgrade ihcrementally over the years, yes? That is, you are recommending starting with frame and saddle and “budget” components (if needed). Then coming back in 1 year for wheels and in 2,3, or 5? years when I want to upgrade from “steel to alloy” or otherwise improve the bike as I wish and can afford later?
Yes, that would be a good course of action.When you work with a Bike Friday Bike Consultant, we ask what your budget is and attempt to find the right bike to fit your needs and budget.
I have just started looking at foldable bikes. I see the weight of the bike listed, but I have not seen the weight the bikes will carry. Is there an average weight foldable bikes will hold?
The amount of weight a bike can carry is more a function of the rack than anything else. With our rear racks, you can carry 65 pounds. Front racks 25 (30 for tikits0.
Thank nou so much for writing this. I am planning on returning to London for the Paralympics and I thought: Why not take my Bike Friday? After all that is why I brought it in 2004?
Have been visiting France for years, from Australia. The Bike Friday lives at the Home of my sister in Col de la Forclaz. A 13% climb included in the 2004 Tour de France
I want to make the same trip in September of next year with my Tikit. I would love to get in touch with anyone from this group to ask for suggestions. I will be traveling alone so I would appreciate any tips.
this is a really charming and enjoyable blog to read. Thank you for writing it.
Thanks for your nice story. I love riding my bike Friday here in the states but look forward to taking it over the pond for some adventure like you described above. Thanks again for sharing your story!
Jacob, this is AMAZING! I love the Q and A part. I want to copy and paste and use it on my blog
Of course!! I’m sure you can think of more great questions to add as well
I am so sorry to hear that these bikes were stolen. Please let us know if you find them again! The program with the school is a great idea and I hope the bikes are found so it will continue.
Awesome shop video strongly featuring the Bike Friday!
Hope my Silk is not Beta tested; oh well then, okay for everyone to try it. Although the Alfine hub is not a submersible, and therefore not really totally water proof, I understand that you can just drain and replace the gear oil bath (basically a transmission oil change). Wonder if the hub wheel bearings are easily accessible for repack. The Silk fame seems quite adaptable to be configured either as mountain bike or road bike. From my mountain biking experience, the problem with submersion riding (like riding down the Coyote Canyon Creek) is that of cartage bearings, especially on the bottom bracket which, cannot be repacked, and are not easily replaced. One really nice mountain bike had grease injection plugs for its bottom bracket (hint hint). I understand based on a post over a year ago, that Rob English has been racing on a frame similar to the Silk: with a rear fork, rather than seat/chain stay triangle. So this rather radical new frame design is fairly tried and true. It makes me want to ask if that dampens the ride a bit: does the rear fork give a bit of a suspension without detracting from pedal power transfer? Seems as though it might. Also looks as if there is frame room on the Silk for me to put on the fattest 451 tires for to taking it off pavement, and the frame and wheels can hold up fine. If there is some slight loss of efficiency with the belt/gear hub drive train, it could be made up for, I should argue, by always being in the right gear at the right time. Derailleur gears may offer greater efficiency with less weight, but demand a great deal of maintenance and replacement to keep it that way â€“ especially when used in the wet. So now you have essentially a foldable commuter bike with 20-inch wheel performance. As soon as everyone there is finished riding my purple Silk with drop bars and Alfine 11 hub, please send it to me.
To think of it now, the Alfine 11 hub should be fairly water-tight. If in deed it is an oil-bath lubrication, then it must be oil-sealed, and therefore, rather impregnable. It is the Nexus that, being grease lubricated, is not sealed against submersion, and would need repacking. No matter how heavily greased is a chain, it is a mess when getting wet. Or else it starts wearing quickly, stretching, and will cause all the sprockets to be in need of replacement. Chains are high-maintenance, especially with derailleur gearing. That is just one thing I like about the belt. Have thought the Carbon Belt system might be vulnerable to mud or snow build-up causing it to jump and be damaged; whereas sprockets can push through the chain spaces. However in a race under heavy mud/snow conditions had even one-speed chain-cog drive trains clog and fail, where the Gates Carbon Belt drives were unaffected.
Hey Matthew, great to hear your working with Bike Friday and great to read your bike testing story. The Silk sounds like a dream of a bike. I still ride my old Miyata on the Saint John River Road here in New Brunswick. I wish I could justify buying a Bike Friday Silk, but old age is catching up with me. I recommend Bike Friday every chance I get.
In looking at the Silk frame design I wonder if it precludes the use of rim brakes and rear racks.
Nope, both are available. Most of our Silks have disc brakes to make the convenience package complete.
Matthew, thanks for sharing your impressions with the Silk. I’m new to folding bikes, but I’m really pondering to get one (also, since I need to new bike).
I am still a bit concerned about the durability of the bike, especially when I stand up from the saddle and lean onto the handlebar with my weight (I’m 6.1 ft and 165 lbs). Can do this with the Silk like to do with my normal bike (trouring/cross bike)?
Matthew is busy building Bike Fridays, but I can tell you that our frames are guaranteed for life. We’ve built Bike Fridays for individuals 7-feet tall, weighing up to 280 pounds. They are built for the long haul.
Thanks for your response Raz. I am really getting anxious to try out the Silk.
It should be noted that the Silk appears to come standard with the heaver rider frame. I still have a body weight in the lower 140 lb and I would of course not worry about my Silk frame. I recently marveled at how good my Silk took to a stretch of gravel road – until taking a pinch-puncture. With no rear triangle, the Silk looks rather fragile, but I recall an article by the Silk designer: Rob English, a Cat 1 class racer, discussing racing with a Silk configuration prototype bike. He was winning top-level hill climbs. Thus I do not think the frames have an inherent weakness. I have detected no instability in my Silk. Although the Silk is intended as a utility, touring bike, it also feels good to get out and hammer with it. I would not hesitate taking it on rough terrain, or getting out of the saddle to really push a climb. I think one can safely not hold back riding it. Go ahead and try to break that frame. The Silk I would venture is as sturdy as any bike. It seems well suited to standing out of the saddle to give it everything you have. Before long, you will consider the Silk a normal bike: I think – correct me if I am just hooting.
Stuart, thanks for your feedback. Good to hear more impressions from a Silk owner. I was not really concerned about a frame, but more about the stem, when I get off the saddle. I am now in contact with a retailer here in Germany, so I can get some hands on experience.
It is so gratifying – and surprising – to see how cycling is such a common ground, in the diverse cultures of the world. As a Tweed rider, I very much appreciate this.
Nice article and photos, I love my Tikit Infinity too and find it very practical pretty much everywhere. The only thing I wish was a better gear range, now I’m waiting for my Infinity Silk and I see what I can do or don’t 😉
Having trained in competitive cycling, I retain the skill of pushing out of the saddle, as it is called. I have found that the Silk for some reason, invites me to do that. Without much thought, I have found myself pushing it out of the saddle (no not getting off and pushing the bike), and am surprised at how natural it feels. And even with a custom fit stem. I would notice if there were a lot of flexing, for the response would be noticeably soft, but, it is not soft. Although the frame is heavier and more durable, the bike seems to want to take the slams; there seems almost a shock absorbing character. That may be why it does not feel abusive to jump the bike off curbs. Wonder if that is related to the unique design.
Send catalog via E-mail if possible!
That’s a fantastic story from start to finish and I enjoyed reading it. I’m glad Mr. King helped out to ensure our Tikit stems are configured optimally. Thank you Mr. King and Bike Friday!
Press On, Richard. I’m 75 and I still ride my Bike Friday even in these hot Texas temperatures.. You have a lot of good years ahead.
Thanks Scott, that’s inspiring to hear.
Our Northern California temperatures have been rivaling even Texas lately.
Well done Richard, can you tell me the chainrings/sprocket size?
At 91 I still am riding; hope you do the same.
Congrarulations Richard and Scott for hanging in there. I too ride my Bike Friday regulary, usually 20 or so miles, at the ripe age of 86 and I plan to continue !!
I had bought a NWT years ago and loved it. Then for some foolish reason still unknown to my rational thinking, I gave it to a friend that lives 6 hours away. I am so sorry I did that and will regret it for years to come. I am getting ready to move from NYC to North Carolina by the end of the month Aug. 1st 2013 and will not get it back. My heart breaks. But I have promised myself that when I move and get a new job and save up ( I am a registered nurse) that I will buy myself a new NWT or one like that for commuting but instead of the blue I had, I’m getting black. I am so excited about the thought of it and just wanted to share that with someone!! Take care and happy travels, Margaret currently in NY and missing my cool Bike Friday!
A gimps at the life behind the bicycles now made in USA. Things are looking good. One must say that Richard will go down in history as one stepped in at a pivotal moment to uphold the innovation that will bring about future bicycles, as well as the rebirth of United States bicycle manufacturing.
Funny how the wife thought the aero suit and timetrial helmet strange, but not the riding of a 20″ wheeled folding bike.
I like riding my PRP because on it I feel the way I did (feel is important here) when I was 17 and could almost not be dropped when I rode with the best in the San Diego Bicycle Club.
I had a NWT I bought through Steve years ago. I foolishly gave it away to a friend, I cry as I write this. Anyway I am moving from NYC to NC before July 1st 2013. Once I start working there I will start saving for a new one for commuting to this new job. I am probably thinking of getting another NWT because I don’t like the 16 inch wheels of the new silk. Anyway I look forward to your e catalog. Thanks so much, Sincerely Margaret Goodwin currently still in NY- Staten Island
I meant August 1st 2013 I will be moving to NC.
My favourite riding partner is my wife. We usually ride at 18-20 Km/Hr, which is slow, as most riders pass us. We talk, laugh and see the chipmunks scoot across the road ahead of us.For us it is all about the journey, not the destination. There is nothing wrong with competition, but since we are all going to the same place eventually, we prefer to take our time getting there.
Keep riding and do enjoy the journey.
Regards. Richard and Edna Kelly
Comfortable riding position.
So many people, it seems, assume that the head- down position is the “best?” way to ride.
We are not racing, so why not sit more upright, accept the 0.5% less aerodynamic speed restriction and arrive more comfortably?
Just one more thing to like about my Tikit.
That is one of my favorite roads. Down towards the bottom (before the switchbacks) there was always a stretch of trees over the road which on the right early spring day gave off the most beautiful tree-dappled sunlight.
I’ve been looking at this bike for some time and wondering about–well about the weight, of course. Unfortunately, I don’t have access to a test or even a visual look-over of the Silk, so I appreciate your review very much. Can it possibly be true that all the extra weight of the steel framed BF plus the Nuvinci don’t have an impact? Not even the knees?
Maybe I’m not the best test ride for this since I’ve never paid that close attention to the weight of a bike. That said, I expected it to be a more difficult ride than my Pocket Llama, but it wasn’t. Then again, the last time I rode up McKenzie Pass was on a GT i-Drive, so that certainly wasn’t a lightweight bike. That said, I did climb on a Super Pro earlier this year on a steeper, shorter climb.The Super Pro was sub 16 pounds. The Silk isn’t in that class, but for a bike that can take a touring load, it sure performed well.
That is a buncha bike bits in a box
Hoping some of those bikes are recovered from the heist of a fleet in a trailer. It is a start for education. It is a valuable skill and knowledge that is not possessed by a large portion of our “educated” populating in the United States. In some European countries, bicycle education is part of early schooling. The children in Holland, for example, can ride as if they know what they are doing: smooth, straight, and in tune with the rest of the traffic in the bicycle lane or bike roadway.
when the OSATA and cargo top secret bike will release?
Soon for the OSATA. Not so sure on the Haul-a-Day.
For some other examples of kit airplanes, see “Hobby Field”, at http://www.efn.org/~hkrieger/hobby.htm
Is this a carry-on?
Yes, if you are the pilot. However, it isn’t small enough to qualify as a carry-on for a regular airline. Sorry.
Dear BIKEFRIDAY owner, when I worked as a Lufthansa Captain until 1999, my BIKE FRIDAY
(#819) travelled with me on the flightdeck many times. Now I see that there is some space for those lovely bikes on all kinds of airplanes, congratulations!
I was there, and I saw this demo! It prompted me to take a spin on a couple of these bikes, too. An amazing experience, I must say. I didn’t want to get off of it. I’m definitely planning on one or two of these for my RV-7A when I get it finished. 🙂
Any plans for Bike Friday to get back in the ‘bent biz?
Sorry. Not at this time.
Hi Steve, your trip sounds fabulous. very scenic and nice to be off busy roads. riding in the Alps sounds so steep but seems you managed it with ease. Bikefriday should give you a free bike for all the excellent advertising you are giving them. i’m interested in a bike trip some time before June 2014. what did you have in mind?
Thank you, Steve, for such a wonderful description of your trip, the photos, and how the Silk handled the terrain it was on. You’re motivating all of us who read your journal.
Encouraging read. Can you say which internal hub and the size of the front and read pulleys? The fear of mountains on a pannier-laden Silk has made me afraid to get one.
I have an Alfine 11 hub which worked perfectly the whole trip. The pulleys were 55 on the front and 24 on the back. Apparently you can get a 26 tooth rear which would make the hills a lot easier and I have contemplated getting one if I do another big trip.
Like you, Steve, the spec just grabbed me. I travel with my bike a lot and all the felt packing bits supplied with my previous NWT were covered in oil etc, so as soon as I read about the Silk I knew I had to get one. I sold my NWT and ordered the Silk with great help from Walter at BF. I picked it up at the factory in Eugene last month and rode the 400 miles back to Victoria BC through Oregon & Washington. What a delightful – quiet – ride! BTW if you’re going to change the rear cog you may find you will have to install a belt with a different number of teeth. And remember to change the oil after the first 1000 kms
Sounds like a good trip, Bruce, one I hope to make one day! I have been assured that I should be able to get away with the same belt with a 26 tooth pulley so I have gone ahead and ordered one. I’ll make a further post once I have fitted it. Already changed the oil but apart from that maintenance has been minimal.
It is a real picture of Hollywood.
wow! Soooo wonderfufl! i would love to have someone to do that with!! HOw fabulous. thanks so much for the story. Make it longer next time!
I should have asked how many miles did you do each day? how did you find where to stay?? did you book ahead? thanks
Dear Eugenia and Peter, Those who have trekked on bicycle know it’s the best way to travel. Congratulations! I wanted to bike to my 50th reunion in Texas, but it didn’t work out. Besides, it’s really hot in TX in May. Your northern route sounds better. I have traveled W. Europe several times; it’s a great way to immerse yourself in the culture. If Chalice reads this, perhaps she and I could discuss such a trip. Send email to Hannah Scholz at Bike Friday, mention Joe E. from TN
How can I get information about the group mentioned for those over 50? My husband and I travel by bike most always self-contained but being over 70 now, we would like to lighten the load a bit without having to use motels every night.
Great story about your birthday trip!
This is a great story, Eugenia. It sounds as though you and Peter are living the good life.
My 24 year old son, Nick, and I will travel from Vancouver, Canada to the Mexican border, just south of San Diego, California, in October 2014. While I have a traditional touring bike, I am contemplating a Bike Friday, especially to help with the air travel portions of trips.
Best within to you and your husband. I am 54, but hope to be riding long tours into my 70s.
Hopefully, my 80-year-old
Strong just like you
Thanks so much for the mention Bike Friday people. I could never have met the goal without my amazing Pocket Rocket (my first BF) and Pocket Rocket Pro (my second BF). Your special bicycles are the magic that helped make one of my cycling dreams come true: to ride every single day… and I’m going to try to keep it going and log lots more wonderful rides on my Bike Friday. I often get this question, so I’ll answer it here: My favorite ride ever on my Pocket Rocket Pro was riding up the Haleakala volcano in Maui and then back down. The climb took about 5 hours, the descent only about 90 minutes. Going from sea level to above the clouds and back again was an experience I’ll never forget. Thank you for so many fantastic memories like this Bike Friday! Jim
Thanks in advance for helping me with the following:
Pocket Pro as is OK. The question is regarding the suitcase.
Are there any suitcase options? the specific request is to be able to fold the suitcase and use as a backpack. The reason is while traveling the suitcase needs to carried.
As with all Bike Friday’s, the suitcase is a Samsonite case. We have a package that turns the suitcase into a trailer that can be towed by the bike, making it a self-sufficient package.
Not only that, when fixing a flat, he’s also known as Leverless Langley! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7_bB4i_Z_cQ
I now have a 26 tooth rear cog on my Silk and it makes hills much easier – it fitted on with the same belt. The bike and I tackled a 3 week tour of New Zealand and we both survived well despite lots of gravel tracks and dirt roads. I even managed to cope with a rear tyre puncture which meant taking the wheel off which is not a trivial task with the belt and internal hub. A word of warning – be very careful with the bolts that go into the wheel drop out plates as the alloy is very soft – I have had stainless steel inserts put in for the adjusting bolts and for the rack mounts.
can’t find the link to this blog post
It should be there now! Apologies
Thanks for the blog and thanks for coming even if you “talk funny”.
Missed it this time but Mansfield will be a great ride next year.
Glad you had such a good time. Was a real pleasure to meet you and look forward to seeing you next year- beware there are more hills in the Mansfield area!!!
Great to read your account and remember the great week around Mudge. Thanks to all who made it possible. See you next year.
May I please pass my respects and my condolences and thoughts and prayers to Margaret
on the passing of her husband and best friend.
I have not been in touch with Margaret for a while but remember her fondly. Tell her
I still hope to get that Bike Friday !
Regards, Steve Giles, Brisbane, Aust.
Great to read your account of the 18th gathering we hope you enjoyed it as much as we did. Thanks for the Decals you sent we received them this morning. we look forward to meeting up again next year in Mansfield Vic. Cheers David
Great! My congrats to him, We want to reach 80 and still be able to riding a bike. An example to follow.
You are a sportscaster! Nice post.
We love the Haul-a-Day here at G&O!
I love it. Although the standard version seemed so much better than the special one.
The neat way the pallet served as a base for the rest of the luggage was great.
I know which rider would have been more comfortable.
I use my bike to carry cargo every day but it cannot take this much weight so I need a trailer when I have a lot of things.
This looks to be another really clever and well thought out design.
I would like to know if anyone else has put the bike friday folding full size rack on their bike friday. I have one on, and regularly put 20lbs or so on it, however both with and without weight on rack there is a certain amount of tweaking or torque with the back fork visibly wobbling. I was wondering if this is occuring on other silks or if mine might have a problem. I am 6’1″ and weigh around 195 so I put a decent amount of pressre on pedals howevrr after reading other comments they seem to have no issue like this.
You are not alone. Because of the design of the rear, we no longer recommend carrying heavy loads on a rear rack.
I was visiting my family in Eugene; we went and I fell in love with the red Haul a day up for raffle.
We went to the store and I test rode a Pocket Companion.
I now have a production date and am shopping for ridiculously cute red and white polka dot with pink roses paniers to use on my new bike.
how do i get my name in the hat??? i am your biggest cheerleader:
Others have used taped cardboard boxes to transport the bike, then fold the box and either throw it away or carry with you.
Just do a google search on this topic and you will find a few posts.
Steve: sounds like a wonderful trip. I’m inspired to ride throughout the Alps in 2016 and am starting to plan a trip. Do you recommend any particular source for maps, or do you use an on-line source while riding? Thanks!
BR. Portland, Oregon
Oh heck YES! Fabulous stuff. Kudos indeed.
Looking forward to reading the full versions, the excerpts really whet the appetite.
Great telling Rob. You make some great points such as the wheel size which encourages me. I own a Dahon P8 which I use for commute and. Specialized Roubaix which is my road distance bike. I have grown to love my Dahon so much, happened on to Bike Friday at last years El Tour deTucson. I love design and theory of it and am seriously thinking selling my Roubaix to get Bike Friday road bike.
I rode my tikit through knee deep water and was concerned the Alfine 11 would be affected. From this experience, it seems it is watertight, which is a relief.
Does the hub need servicing? How does one look after it though one of the reasons for getting this hub is so that it will not need looking after.
The hub does need routine maintenance. Please call our service department, they will be ready to assist you.
After take a glance of this bike, just a sound came from my mouth and the sound was ” Awesome”.
This bike is amazing! it is very fast and the style is really for me. It is also very light with alloy rims with alloy hub. the steel frame is very sturdy as I have crashed it and it is still in great shape! Really worth the money.
Hey Raz, Wow! Love your Haul-A-Day and the blog/story of your adventure. I notice that your front basket and it seem WAY heavy, however, i did not note any complaints from you in regards to how your Haul-A-Day handled. Apparently if wasn’t a problem? I figured it would have wobbled you into a ditch 😉 Thanks, Dave/Dave Gay
The front basket mounts to the frame and not the front wheel. Having a good amount of weight up there does absolute wonders for the balance of the bike. In fact, I had to do a double-take when you thought it seemed “way heavy” because it didn’t feel that way at all. I didn’t even notice it, really. The only thing you have to get used to is that the basket doesn’t turn with the front wheel, so that throws you off a little at first. But the front basket is one of the accessories that make the Haul-a-Day such a versatile tool, especially if you have the back loaded with kids.
Too bad the battery on the Bionix is considered “dangerous goods”. The fire suppression systems on airplanes is not enough to extinguish one of those batteries if it “runs away” therefore it’s considered too dangerous to be carried on ANY airliner, passenger or cargo. Shame.
What the heck… I can’t buy a ticket. The website is down. I want to register for the bike giveaway. I also want to particpate. come on. This is not right.
The folks at Philly Bike Expo say the website is up and working.
Not working when I just tried to get a ticket.
As I understand it there are some issues with certain browsers (sorry that I don’t know which ones). But they are working to fix the problem.
hooray! May the winner have much fun on the bike!!
Of course winner is definitely going to have much fun.
I ride at least 4 times a week, or 200 times a year and can’t take it if I don’t I makes me feel so much healthier and relaxed. I now ride a cargo bike and do almost all chores with it. I ride around 3,000 miles per year.
That’s real good advice! Also I would add that be careful about buying a bike just from the test ride advice you read in a magazine. Reviewers tend to have their own biases about bikes and what they like may not fit what’s best for you.
Very inspiring. Thanks for sharing!
This beautiful tikit, featured in the photo, is still available. This particular Tesla owner has not yet taken the leap, so his loss is your gain! http://www.BikePartners.net, Santa Rosa, CA. The Bike Friday ‘tikit’ — best cure for EV range anxiety.
Great adventure story and one that I hope to replicate with me wife one day. We have a triple bike Friday which, now with our kids going to high school next year, we plan to make into a tandem and do some trips. Thanks for the inspiration!
Merill and I are off to Japan in April thenTelAviv in February on ourBikeFridays
We live near Portland and would love to get together andcompare noted sometime.
We took our Bike Friday’s to Cuba 4 years ago and found the same positive experience. We, too, had been advised to take lots of energy bars and we’re glad we did. At that time, riding from Havana to Vinales, it was difficult to find ANY food to buy along the mostly deserted roads. We stayed in casa particulars the entire time and in these private homes, the food was plentiful and delicious. We hope to return soon and bike east from Havana the next time.
What model was Claudia’s bike.
It would be fun to organize a bike trip to Cuba.
A reasonably small group.
Claudia was riding a New World Tourist. Though after her Cuba trip she upgraded to the lightweight version, the New World Tourist Lite!
Hey, great story. I’m ready to go!
Great job Claudia… I am planning on doing that soon with my wife. Also a European tour with our Bike Fridays.
About 20 yrs ago my wife and I bought two relatively inexpensive bikes and toured the western part of Cuba. Beautiful! We gave the bikes to two deserving (we hoped!) teenagers at the end of the trip. Great place to travel by bike. Glad that our political attitude toward Cuba has changed.
I would love to bike around CUba. Send me any information on future trips.
Yes, I’d love to ride through Cuba too. I wonder when the US Govt will close Guantanamo Bay and turn it into a tourist attraction a la Alcatraz…?
Three of us returned 4 March 2016 from four weeks in Cuba. Eugene was well represented. My Co-Motion and Lynda’s Bike Friday. We met another cyclist from Vancouver, BC, also on a Bike Friday, in the Pinar del Rio province.
I loved Cuba since I first went more than 20 years ago. I can imagine how great it would be to go with my 15 year old son and bike around. I will appreciate any helpful insight. Best.
We’re excited that you’re thinking about going! What kind of insight are you looking for? Traveling advice for Cuba? Thoughts on the best bike to take? You’re welcome to email Claudia and ask her anything about her experience, her email is at the end of the post. And, of course, if there is anything that we can help you with feel free to email us at email@example.com
How does one et to Cuba via Mexico? I have no idea about how to get there . I have a Surly LHT and would like to take it with me. As you can probably tell I have very little experience in touring.
Check in with Claudia, she can give you the full scoop! Her email is at the end of the post. Enjoy your travels!
Cycle North Carolina. A one week ride from the mountains to the coast. Held annually the first week of October.
Sounds like a great ride, thanks Dean!
Tour De Simcha now in its 5th year. Part of Chai Lifeline, people bike and run all over the world to help children and families affected by cancer and other life-threatening illnesses. This year 180 women will bicycle 73 miles from New Jersey to the Catskills. The ride ends at Camp Simcha where the campers eagerly wait for the riders to arrive. Then it”s party time. Take a look at the videos and visit my page at tourdesimcha.com
This sounds like a really important and worthwhile ride, thanks for sharing Nina!
Go to Michigan and ride the DALMAC Labor day. A great ride beginning in Lansing and ending at or over the Mac bridge. A great ride for the family too
Awesome! Family rides are the best! Thanks Glen
From what I understand, you are required to be a part of an organized educational or cultural group on order to visit. Those of you that have gone, what was your organization?
People have been going for years, via Mexico. Now, you can go via the U.S. if you do travel with an educational/cultural group which provides you with documentation. I am going with ibike in March. They do people-to-people tours.
Bike Virginia – 6 days of riding in various parts of Virginia, full supported including rest stops camping etc.
Very cool, I hope it includes stopping at the beach! Thanks Jon!
Bike Maine is a real treat. We did it a couple of years ago and this year it will be with my new Pocket Rocket!
Oh cool, is this the lighthouse ride?
The Unknown Coast Weekend in Ferndale CA, put on by Chico Velo Sept 17 and 18. Two day ride, redwood forests, pristine coastline and some nice hills including “the wal”. Rest stops, dinner, pancake breakfast, free camping or pay another $15 and stay in a cabin. Two day price is around $85. Chicovelo.org
Pancake breakfasts and “the wall,” who wouldn’t want to go!
I’m also very interested in touring Cuba, but have been waiting until I could go directly from the US (without having to go with a sponsored group), but now I’m thinking of waiting no longer and accessing it from Colombia where I hope to travel this Fall. I don’t want to haul a bike, so I’m wondering if it’s possible to purchase a half decent “cross-type” bike in Cuba and use it?
With a conventional type bike, can you transport on their buses?
Awesome! Not sure about buying bikes there… My experiences of Latin America is that the bikes there are cheap Chinese models. Nothing that you’d want to tour on. But I’ve never been to Cuba, maybe its different there? Feel free to email Claudia, her address is at the end of the post. And yes, you can transport a standard frame on the buses, but you’ll have to disassemble them, take the wheels off etc.
Hi this really sounds great but I am confused – did you bike each day while in port and come back to sleep or did you bike from one port to another and catch the ship further along on the cruise?
Hi Sharo, whatever port we visited allowed us the time we were there to ride. Most of the time it was a full day. On several occasions it was two days. We found it very easy to explore and make it back to the ship.
Great little story, my wife & I cruise a bit, I have only once seen a man with a fold up and have thought about this many times, you convinced me …… Cheers Rod from Australia
Hi Rod, we sure had fun riding in your country. While riding in Darwin (during the tail end of a cyclone) looking for a bike shop for a jersey souvenir I met a shop owner named Dingo who owned K9 Cycles. He didn’t have a jersey at the shop but asked me if I could wait a bit? Sure. He comes back with a totally cool N W Territory racing jersey and gives it to me as a token of Ausie hospitality. The people of Australia were amazing!
We took a BF Project Q in its tandem form on an Alaskan Cruise (New Amsterdam, out of Vancouver, Inside Passage). Disassembling it into its cargo shoulder bag was my means to get it in and off the ship. It made for a slightly cozier space in the room, but it fit. We’d do the assembly/disassembly on the dock. I had mapped out rides of 20-40 miles in each port. Unfortunately, it rained nearly every day except in Skagway, where it was windy and cold. Still we road up the pass towards Canada. Very scenic and free-feeling.
Don’t think our stateroom AKA “hamster hole” would have worked with a tandem. My hats of to you for doing it and making most of your trip despite weather. That’s always roll of the dice.
Great trip report! Been to Tanzania, done the Northern Safari Circuit (Serengeti, Ngorongoro, etc and pretty sure I know the rock those two lionesses are on. Agreed that it’s unfortunate that tourism has created faux friendship/interaction based on handing out money.
I had hoped to read a trip report saying that cycling made you somewhat different and immune to that sort of thing.
Bicycle “repair” is an amazing thing in that part of the world. Welding torches are as important as wrenches. As a bicycle shop owner, my one regret is not getting to spend any time at a bike “shop” while there. Not something the guide had any interest in, and you won’t find much English spoken in that environment.
You did a fantastic job! I love my New World Tourist but I haven’t yet acquired the endurance to make a trip like yours, but that is a goal! Thanks for sharing such a marvelous achievement! Mary in Oregon
Fantastic trip report! Enjoyed your perspective and how to roll with the ever changing surroundings. The pictures are beyond words. Can’t imagine seeing all those animals in their natural habitat let alone while riding a bike!
I would do a red frame with black trim. Add some black 3m glow tape on the red frame and it would look a lot like my current BF….named “Ladybug”. =)
Nice! That sounds awesome, especially with the glowing tape. Does it glow in the dark?!? Send us pictures: firstname.lastname@example.org
Great Story! Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful adventure. I worked for Peace Corps Tanzania for three years. My bicycle was my best friend and rode it everyday to the office, but I have to admit I never took an extended bike trip to the north. I am seriously jealous. You can easily ride your bikes on the ferry to Zanzibar and it is fun to ride there.
I still work for Peace Corps as a Roving Director of Management and the staff at different posts I work in laugh when my clothes are in my carry-on suitcase and my other bag is my Bike Friday!
Enjoy your time in Tanzania and give my love to the PC staff there!
Thanks for all your thoughts. Anne, Elisa is a Peace Corps Response, Seed Global Health Volunteer teaching nurses and midwives at the University of Dodoma. She will send your message on to PC TZ. Best, Barry
Gorgeous photos! Amazing trip! Looks like the trip of a lifetime.
We currently own a tandem Santana Arriva but will be upgrading to a Santana Spiriit, which will be easier to travel with. Also just bought a tandem Bike Friday. Cycling in Cuba sounds really great. Would love to do something like that. We’re considering a trip south next winter (2017). Would love to meet up with other cyclists.
Nice ride!!!,maybe next trip you want more hills? check ours some years ago
Thank you for a wonderful article! It is fabulous to read of Nancy doing the Pyrennes on the Pocket Crusoer (New World Tourist Lite). As for pace, I always believed slow and steady got you to the top and it looks like the triple cranks did the job. And you managed with all that weight! There’s hope for the rest of us then.
Fantastic job, you two! My husband and I both own Pocket Crusoes as well, and although we’ve never taken them into serious mountains, we have ridden them all over the US (including a loaded tour in upstate NY) and even in Mexico. They are amazing bikes and have never let us down!
What a wonderful trip! I have a Pocket Rocket Pro, which I have travelled with a dozen times in Europe, mainly in France. I cannot say enough about how comfortable it is and its top performance on the climb and descent. Thank you for sharing your trip. Vance
Thanks for the story. We skipped the mountains on our Tandem Tuesday, but our France trip in 2015 included the stretch from Bordeaux through Toulouse and on to the Mediterranean Sea. Mostly on canal paths and small roads. Warm welcomes and great food and wine experienced best on a Bike Friday.
Usual tandems require the heavier person to be captain, in front. That appears not to be the case here. Why?
There isn’t actually anything about the bike design that would require the heavier rider to be in the front. It’s all about what the individuals who are riding the tandem prefer!
Hello Lou, It has never been a requirement. Tandems are generally configured with the larger frame up front, which makes sense. However, it is not a requirement. I am blind and have been riding and racing tandems for over 18 years. I am 170, at my heaviest and have ridden a Bike Friday Traveller XL, with a lady pilot, who weighed 97 pounds. As long as the stoker is experienced and steady, it should not be a problem.
Ron, in Sacramento
Where are batteries in Pic #1 (with couple – above) ? Is that the ‘cruise’ battery on the rear rack in Pic #2 (no people, but lots of pumpkins, below?). What thoughts or recommendations on a folding solar array that could recharge LiPo’s in a couple of hours (while eating a picnic lunch?). Are the brakes regenerative at all ? More info would be helpful… Geoff, in NC
Look at the seat configuration here–there’s little doubt this stoker has a much better view than with a more “typical” tandem arrangement. Good for them.
We are Bike Friday fraternal twins with Bob! We also have an orange Bike Friday with an electric system sold by Electric Bike Solutions (go Doug!), but in our case it’s a Haul-a-Day. Love the e-assist system and the bike.
Love your pics Kris and Bob! Your tandem is beautiful!
Hi Kris and Bob, thanks for your inspiring story, I am in the UK and currently considering installing a Bionx on our tandem twosday. We also have a rear Sram 3 speed hub gear with a 9 speed derailleur . I had assumed I would put the Bionx in the rear wheel and therefore lose the Sram 3 speed and have to switch to a triple ring front changer. I had thought the torque pull from having the Bionx in the front wheel would be too strong and make it feel dangerous – that is obviously not your experience. I appreciate that the pedal assist sensor does control the torque but I am aware in an emergency hill start situation there is an overide button and I wondered whether you have any comments. I take the captain’s role and my wife the stoker – we each weigh around 150 lbs. I am thinking your electric motor is not a Bionx and may be a SRAM electric assist which i thought was not available for upgrading
I can relate to this, happy seeing and reading this one..
I so enjoyed your “family” last trip, I’m sure you wife was there in spirit. I live in Shropshire and the county is beautiful, history abounds and wonderful scenery, we are lucky,lucky people.
Enjoy many more trips.
A fine tribute to your dear wife and her bicycle.
Very nice story! Thanks.
Wonderful story…..thank you for sharing. What a delightful tribute to your wife. I am hoping you will continue to ride with such joy. Your photos were outstanding, especially the ones of Lincoln Cathedral……such clarity.
Beautiful. Inspiring. Thank you. You and your wife are very blessed. Peace.
Beautiful, touching narrative. Absolutely lovely pictures.
What a beautiful post — moving, inspiring and helpful! I have gotten hooked on the southwestern tip of England in recent years, but it’s more a walking country, rather than cycling. Now I’m going to try the south-east, with my new BF. Thank you!
Beautiful tribute to his wife!
Thank you for sharing your moving and engaging story.
Inspirational! Thank you for sharing your story.
NOW 7:05 A.M. AND I JUST FINISHED THIS MAGNIFICENT ARTICLE. TIME TO LEAVE FOR WORK NOW, BUT CAN HARDLY WAIT TO GET HOME AND A JAUNT ON MY FRIDAY, DREAMING I AM MAKING THIS RIDE……..charlie
A beautiful photo-journal tribute of your promise to your wife. Thank you for sharing!
A great story ….. so much so, that I am now very interested in doing the route myself.
Wonderful photos, interesting historical facts and touching tribute to your late wife. I’d like to point out however that In Flanders Field was written by the Canadian brigade doctor John McCrae, not John McPhee.
Thank you. Superb photos and a well told story. Ordnance Survey maps 50,000 scale are recommended; old fashioned and let you see the whole area.
It is insufficient, to just say thank you. But words Are all we have.
Rich, thanks for the wonderful account of your “rideabout”. I’m so sorry for your loss. May you always feel the presence of you wife’s gentle spirit
A wonderful tribute and a great journal of a Bike Friday ride.
One correction is with the poem “In Flanders Field” It was written by Lieut.-Col. John McCray who was a
Member of the First Canadian contingent, died in France January 28, 1918, after four years in the Western Front.
What a delightul, touching account of your ride. Well written, with gorgeous pictures of a beautiful land. Sorry for the loss of your beloved. A wonderful way to share her spirit. Your Friday is beautifully set up, as well.
Speechless, so much love
So sorry for the loss of your other half
Beautiful Memorial! I’m sure she enjoyed it. I’m also sure she will be riding with you each time you push your pedals.
Touching story beautifully told in word and stunning photos. Being Aussies we loved the use of an Aboriginal name for your special BF. Thank you for sharing such a personal journey and a wonderful tribute to your wife. We tandem tour on a Two’s Day and were impressed with your bike set up.
Great job! I did two triathlons with my pocket rocket and have a half ironman coming soon. May try a full ironman someday with my pocket rocket!
I did John O’Groats to Lands End on my NWT in June 2012. We did 1,600 k’s in 23 days in the worst start to summer in 160 yrs…hope you have much better conditions than we did!
Would this route easy to find a camping place ? I planning to bicycled this route in the few years. As the beginning of a trip from Europe to China. My bicycle is NWT too, THX guy!
Hi Barr, you will find campgrounds easily. UK is big on camping. check: http://www.campingandcaravanningclub.co.uk/ukcampsites (just on example, find more sites for clubs and sites in each region where you wanna go). Plus, you can even ask on the next farm you pass by for permission (if you are in great need). More on cycling the UK here: http://www.cycletourer.co.uk/cycletouring/uk.shtml . Good luck and have fun!
Lots of campsites in the UK. If you use http://cycle.travel/map (disclaimer – my site!) to plan out a route, you can use the little accommodation menu on the left to find campsites nearby – it uses the data from the fabled Archie’s Campings listings which is generally acknowledged to be the best campsite data in Europe.
As a fellow NWT owner it’s great to read this account. 🙂
Wonderful and thanks much. My bucket list now has one more item.
Hey Robbie,we bought two NWT in 2014 mine have the flat touring bars? Can I get just those bars for another bike? Long story but I now really need the shorter grip distance
No problem. I’ll have our service department reach out to you and work out the details. If you have any other questions, feel free to email me directly at email@example.com. Hope your NWTs are treating you well!
As a bike enthusiastic i know how much planning needed to go on a bike Friday with your family. Loved the photos and don’t stop biking. Thanks
Thank you – lovely story. Was wondering what camera you carried; very nice photos.
Thanks for sharing such a great article. Keep updating us
I noticed that you did not ride with your suitcase in a trailer. What did you do with your suitcase?
Wow you are an inspiration Molly!! Congratulations.
This is the perfect way that how a content must be delivered. Thank you for the useful info buddy.
I went there many years ago and raced with a small Cuban team. It was so much fun.
Now, I am OLD!! but I want to do a tour. I am considering buying a bike friday bike as I hate getting ripped off on transport on the plane
Let us know what we can do to help.
I’m getting ready to fly to Okinawa with my New World Tourist Lite packed in the suitcase. I also have the trailer kit for when I get to the mainland. I can’t tell you how excited I am to be making this trip. Soon I’ll be posting on Twitter and Instagram.
Georgetown is NOT a suburb of Washington, DC. It is an integral part of WDC. The original survey of the District of Columbia in the late 18th Century included Alexandria, Georgetown, and Washington “city” (Pierre L’Enfant’s original layout), all in a 10 mile by 10 mile diamond, the federal District of Columbia. In 1841 Virginia took back their portion in a non-contentious negotiation, since crossing the Potomac was troublesome in those days (it still is, at rush hour!). That left DC with its peculiar current layout. IN 1871 Georgetown and Washington City merged their street grid, utilities, and labeling of neighborhoods, BUT, Georgetown has always been part of the District, in the portion that Maryland contributed to the Federal district. Ken Berman – proud BF owner. (I just did the full GAP/C&O last week over five days of camping. If in DC, pls visit me at kensdctours.com)
Good story. Thanks to Ken for clarifying the Georgetown comment. We just got back from six weeks in France on our Bike Friday tandem with suitcase trailer: Ain’t it grand to be riding, especially on a Bike Friday?
Good job! Congrats!😉Beautiful pictures, inspiring.
Aaron could you please tell me more about the stiffness of your tikit? Did you improve it somehow?
I ride a tikit, too. My experience on long distance ride is, that i lose a lot of energy, because the frame is loose (because of the folding mechanism).
I am ok with the ride quality on my tikit. It’s my 1st proper bicycle, Before the tikit I was just using affordable bicycles that u get off the supermarket. I would still say I am pushing the small wheeled tikit a bit too hard in a massive tour like Iceland, but hey it survived. If I am ever tired is cos of the crazy wind/rain in Iceland. The most important mod on my tikit is getting it to have a road double chainring setup, this helps me to have better gear range to tackle difficult hills. And I got the bikefriday H bar which I Love a lot.
Hi Aaron, What is the weight of your luggage throughout the cycling trip? All you brought along was on your bike? Thank you.
Beautiful Lady. Keep it up.
FINALLY — one that actually folds flat. Can’t wait to try it.
Just read the article on the Morpher Collapaible Helmets, nice. The writer, Jeffrey, who travels and rides a lot did a nice job describing his dilemma and convinced me that this is the right helmet for the resolution.
Thanks for the feedback!
Excellent idea who’s time has come. As a physician I always advise riders to protect against head trauma. We now know even minor cerebral contusions can lead to serious health issues. This helmet is the right size with the right protection. Just like you would’t drive your car without a seat belt, no one should ride a bike without a helmet.
Now we have a portable, easy to carry Morpher helmet.
I couldn’t agree more!!! Thanks.
Absolutely. I suggest that someone investigate volume production and price points. For a rider that flies perhaps 2 or 3 time per year, I just clip my helmet to my carry-on pack and treat it like a hat. $150 is pretty costly, but get it under $100 and sales volume would increase.
I am small, so my bike friday is small. I can fit my helmet into the suitcase with my bike. However, in doing so, I have also had my helmet cracked (ya gotta love the baggage handlers). Having a low-profile helmet, that I can easily store in my carry-on would be great.
It’s great that you noticed the helmet had cracked. Unfortunately, it is also feasible that your full size helmet would be in your suitcase, take impact, crack and you not realize it. That would be very unfortunate as it would not provide the needed protection.
With the Morpher flat folding helmet, it would sit comfortably in the suitcase and not be at risk of cracking due to impact on the case itself.
Or there’s this solution: hovding.com
While the hovding is an interesting idea, there are several things to consider:
· It is a scarf that needs to be zipped up around the neck in order to be used. It is VERY hot and restrictive to cycle in.
· It costs $300 (more than some bikes)
· It can only be used once then needs to be discarded
o so if it’s dropped and goes off in error it needs to be chucked away – goodbye $300
o it can’t be tested, because once again, if it’s triggered and goes off then it needs replacing
· It needs to be fully charged before use
· It needs to be serviced annually (apparently)
· It has a complex algorithm to decide if it needs to be inflated
o Would you be confident that it would always go off when needed? I wouldn’t
o If it goes off when not needed then, once again, you have a complete failure and will need to replace it
· It can’t be taken on an aircraft. The ATA and TSA won’t allow it
· You have to remember to turn it on when you mount your bike and then turn it off when you demount
· It weighs 812g… so it is very heavy
· It hasn’t passed CPSC testing so can’t be used legally (or sold) in the US!
The mechanicals of the helmet should be explained.
How is it stabilized while in the open position so that it will not be crushed on impact?
When folded, there is a magnet device that holds the helmet totally flat. When you pull the helmet open, there is a locking mechanism on each side of the helmet that engages to hold the helmet totally open. To fold the helmet, you slide the locking mechanism up, it releases the sections of the helmet and it folds flat once again. (Sorry, a little tough to describe without a picture, but it really works!)
The article does not state what safety standards are met by this helmet (CPSC, ASTM F447, Snell B-95, or?). These standards protect for a drop of 2.0m or 2.2m, equivalent to failing from the bike). If a new design could offer protection for impact a realistic speed if would be worth a premium price.
We believe that it meets the EN1078 and CPSC safety standards, but we’re still waiting on the final confirmation from Morpher HQ. We should have an answer for you soon!
Got the word from Morpher- the helmet has CPSC (US) and CE EN1078 (non-US, excluding Australia) safety certifications.
There will soon be two Pak-iTs in Columbus! Woo-hop!
Hi i living in australia. And i own tikit. How fo o get recall service?
The best way to resolve this is to get in touch with our service department- 541-687-0487 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Would have liked to see more info on the helmet. Rather than packed in the matte black bag in your suitcase a video of how it works/folds would have been nice. Also exactly what safety standards the helmet meets is NOT clearly explained. I am familiar with ANZI, ASTM, and CSA but I have never heard of CPSC (US) or CE EN1078 (non-US). Also no information is given regarding colour options.
Why did Bike Friday NOT urge prospective customers interested in the Morpher Folding Bicycle Helmet to log onto the Indigogo site and order the helmet from there, then the customer would have a wider selection of colour choices, NOT just restricted to WHITE ONLY which Bike Friday is currently offering?
When first got in touch with Morpher we weren’t aware that their helmets were available for purchase through their 2013 Indie-Go-Go. Once that came to our attention we reached out to them and have negotiated a deal- Morpher is going to offer BF customers an exclusive discount to purchase a helmet through their campaign! We’re still ironing out the details, but we’ll be in touch soon with the specifics on the offer!
Matthew @ Bike Friday
Wow! What a brace soul you are! I must learn to ride alone and am encouraged by yours! Thank you for sharing.
Thank you for the story. Now I’m dreaming of touring on my new Friday
This is a great account! We’re stoked as we’re leaving to ride Cuba in 8 days. Like you, we’re arrivingin Varadero (Matanzas), bussing to Sancti Spiritus then biking back via Trinidad, Cienfuegos, Playa Giron then up through the centre. We’re taking the Hershey train to Havana and biking biking unassigned in the area for a week.
You’ve answered some questions for us – through your pics we notice you went with long sleeved jerseys for instance – and we’ve been wondering if we should pre book Casas. It appears you had good luck with just arriving.
We will be blogging whenever we can find internet at this site:
Our FB New World Tourists are packed and ready to go!
Loving this blog!
How many years you are goin to trips with mr. Friday?
Not quite 1 year. I hope to have many more trips in the future.
How did You install the extra chainring?
Did you just “handshift” it or did You also install a derailer?
Do You have any close ups of the setup?
Hi. It’s a 3rd party Front deraileur hangar attached to the part where the seatmast latches to the tikit frame
Could you share with all the hopeful folks out there as to whether the pakiT can roll while folded in the way the Tikit does?
Hi Steve, thanks for reaching out! Currently, the pakiT doesn’t roll while folded the way that the tikit does, but we’re definitely looking into how to make that happen!
Please do! Thanks for sharing 🙂
I went to build a Pakit and didn’t see options for fenders and racks?
Also I didn’t see the backpack as an additional item for purchase?
Are they on the website somewhere and I missed these items?
Hi, you’re absolutely right! Thank you so much for bringing this to our attention. We’re working on it and hope to have it updated by the end of the day.
Awesome journey by an awesome team
How about a how to link?
We’re assuming you mean to build the generator, here’s a link:
Thanks for the great information,you explained things so perfectly,thank you .
How much is this bike. Do you have 3 wheelers. I have trouble with my balance now.
Hi Mary Ann, thanks for reaching out! This bicycle starts at $1190. We don’t make three wheelers, sorry to say. Feel free to email or call with any further questions: email@example.com 1-800-777-0258
My boyfriend ordered and paid for a Morpher helmet for me in November 2016. It’s now Feb 2017 and this helmet never showed up. I was starting to think this was a scam. We’re in the US so thought maybe it just takes longer to get here. Emailed numerous times and messaged through Facebook. Can’t find a phone number to call. Can anyone help out?
Hi Barbara, we aren’t reps for Morpher, so unfortunately we don’t have any info that you don’t already have. The order deadlines they’ve given in their campaign are estimates, did they not give you an estimated delivery time? Might be a technical issue, you may want to try emailing from a different account, and/or checking your spam folder in case their responses ended up there.
Hi Barbara, I checked with Morpher and Geeta Bhandari would be happy to assist you. Her direct e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org. She tried to look up the order, but since it was ordered by your boyfriend, she was unable to find it with just your name. Please reach out to her directly.
It was hot and sunny so I used a long sleeved jersey most days for the sun protection. On the long days of 80+km we usually were riding by 6am aiming to be at our destination by midday. Going up La Farola I had a sleeveless jersey but put the long sleeved one on for going down. November was not peak season so we never booked ahead except for the initial casa.
I am also riding the same Bike Friday (Pocket Rocket) since 1994. I retrofitted the original shifter cable system a bit, which wrapped around the bottom bracket with just a few nylon sheathes that would wear out and allow the cables to rub against the bracket. I patched in some cable housing, held in place with hose clamps. I had to change the right crank once after it became enlarged at the flange and would no longer stay tight. Everything else on the bike except the usual wearable parts is still original.
Mine is #1086, 1993, for 24 years. Cycled another 5,000 miles in 2016. Cycled in 21 countries with the same Pocket Rocket. No idea of the total miles traveled, but probably around 100K. Other than the usual chain-cables-cassettes maintenance items, the major changes include: Double to triple crankset; conversion to Capreo rear; YST headset to XT, and now on 2nd XT; replaced triple crank with another triple crank; back to Green Gear twice for the Capreo update, cracked rear stay repair; cracked hinge tab (both time they blasted and repainted it; replaced and rebuilt the rear wheel once while on a cross-USA trip in 2008. Also wore out the first trailer frame. And all this time, Green Gear has stood behind their lifetime warranty. What a great company.
nice explanation…. I am saving hard to own my dream dream folding bike friday…
God knows when that day is going to come , I am 43 already! 🙁
Manoj, you’re never too old- there are Bike Friday owners in their 90’s!
Great job, looking forward to reading more of your travel Stories.
Wow.. Inspriational! Can’t wait to hear of future travels with the Pocket Rocket. Also interested in how this fits you. I am a big guy and was under the perception that a Pocket Rocket did not work well for big guys. Thoughts?
Hey Dale, isn’t a great story? We’re really inspired by it too! Thanks for the question, we’ll reach out to Newton and ask him to chime in!
Very interested in getting more info. I have had some cardiac issues in the last few years and although now ok, an assist bike may be in my future.
Absolutely, we’re happy to share more info with you. One of our design experts will reach out to you to make themselves available as a resource- you can ask whatever questions you’d like, we’re here to help!
Brilliant piece. Great story, really well chosen pictures and a compelling message. I’m in!
Thanks Jeff! If you can make it out to the launch party this Friday, we’d love to see you there! Ninkasi on tap, live music, tiny home + pakiT demos… it’s going to be awesome!
More than half way through my 7th decade (God…when did that happen?) and electric assist is starting to sound pretty good.
We bought a new Family Tandem last summer, and would like to ride it “right up to the end!”
Time flies when you’re having fun, so you must be having a lot of it! Electric assist is pretty gosh darn cool, it sort of makes you feel like super man while you’re riding. We’d love to chat more with you about your plans to convert your tandem, one of our design experts will reach out via email, feel free to ask them whatever you’d like to know about electric assist!
Great to hear from you Joseph!
I just talked with a lady at our lake who was riding a 27 speed Bike Friday. That is what I want.
I like your idea of an electrical assist, with your assistance. Do you sell the 27 speed bike?
Hi Steve, thanks for reaching out! We definitely sell 27 speed bicycles and we’ve got some great options for e-assist as well. We’ll have one of our design experts get in touch with you to provide you with more details and to be a resource for any additional questions you have!
I spy with my little eye – The Galavan! Can’t wait ’til it’s done and my new pakiT is safely on board. Nice article – and I’ll be calling you soon, Matt.
The Galavan! Yes! Excited to catch up with you Joni, see you at the launch party on Friday?
hi there, i happen to find one Rare Honda Step Compo UB10 electric Folding bike in a Garage sale in our neighborhood, i charge the Battery , tested & it run perfectly. the gear shifts as suppose to & it is in mint condition. im just wondering what would be the value of such Bike now a days. can you assist me in figuring out if this is indeed a rare find & the value? please advise
Hi Mel, thanks for reaching out. Unfortunately, that’s not our area of expertise, though there are probably e-bike forums out there where someone could help you assess your great find! Best of luck
I need a Bike Friday for my 236 sqft Manhattan studio. Wait, I already have a Bike Friday. 2 of them. No 3! Maybe I need a bigger studio LOL!
You’ve got the tiny life down to an art! Is there one of those infamous NYC kitchen-bathtubs in your apartment? P.S. Lynette, have you connected with Newton and the new NYC BF club?
HAWAII has the highest rate of homelessness in the US. PLEASE TELL ME WHAT YOU THINK IT WOULD COST TO BUILD ONE HERE.
Thanks for reaching out! From our understanding, it costs about $25,000 in materials to build a tiny home. This estimate is for the mainland though, so may not take into account factors that are unique to island living. Your question would probably be best answered by folks in HI who have already built one, try checking out some local resources to get a clearer picture!
Like you I live in a tiny house. So to speak. It’s a Mother in Law apartment with a storage room at about 480 sq. feet. Pretty spacious even with three cats and four bikes. I wish I would had made the last one a Bike Friday. I would’ve had more room. Especially when I haul my bikes in my small Honda Fit. I love the tiny movement.
So cool that you’re living tiny and loving it! And it’s never too late for a Bike Friday, sounds like it would be perfect for you 🙂
Nice article Joe! Love the photos and the setup on your Pocket Rocket Pro. These photos are very inspiring for a newbie like myself to the wonderful world of bike touring
I just have one question. If you fly into a city, you must have to pack the bike into its suitcase. But I see from your pictures that you do not travel with the suitcase as a trailer. So what do you do with the suitcase? Do you leave it at a “Left Luggage” desk at the airport? Not all airports have this and the days of storage lockers are long gone due to security issues. I personally do not like to carry my suitcase as a trailer.
One more question. Don’t you have to carry a lot of extra tires since the 20″ ones are hard to find? I don’t see any tires strapped to your bike.
Hello Marianne—My usual strategy is to book myself into lodging for the first night that I’ve arrived in a city and to make a booking at the same place for the night before I fly out. It is then never a problem to leave the suitcase in storage there during the trip. In general I agree with you in that I do not prefer using the trailer as a suitcase. I find that it functions well enough this way—and I’ll use it to go home from the airport or to go straight to a friend’s house—but I just don’t prefer trailers in general.
In cases where I will not return to the arrival city, I have packed the Friday in an appropriately sized cardboard box! I dispose of it when I arrive and then I make a new one in the departure city. This is standard for cycle tourists with big wheel bicycles, but it is much easier with the BF because less cardboard material is needed.
Regarding tires, I have only rarely carried spares. It is true, of course, that the 451’s can be difficult to find but on trips of less than six weeks I regard the risk of tire catastrophe as negligible.
Thanks! As a cycle tourist and fellow adventurer I really enjoyed reading your article and viewing the photos.
Even though I just purchased my custom measured BF last year from phone sales rep and have yet to put even 100 miles on it, I nevertheless must agree with David regarding quality of craftsmanship and superiority of design and comfort ! As a forty plus year touring bike enthusiast of numerous 700cm wheel designs, I was faced by my sixties with a degenerative disc disease of my neck that threatened further use of such bicycles.
Thank God for the founders at BF, who 25 years ago, thought “outside the box” of convention and designed a radically different (and superior in ways) bike frame. Unlike conventional road, touring, mountain, cruiser designs, my custom made BF allows for an unusual 26″ long handlebar stem which allows me to ride with a nearly vertical spine position, thus alleviating 95% of the strain upon my cervical vertebrae ! Now I can once again ride PAIN FREE and therefore ride greater distances, especially in the “organized rides” I so love to engage.
Thank YOU, Bike Friday ! Your company = a “Godsend”!
I was wondering the same about transporting the bike as well. Leaving the suitcase in hotels storage is a good idea.
It looks like you have quite a bit of weight on the bike’s handlebars.
Do you ever find that this can make cycling a little awkward? I rarely cycle with front panniers for this very reason.
Hi Mike, the handlebar load you see in the photos I find pretty modest. It’s a 2kg tent, a foam pad, and then a front pocket with a mirrorless camera and maybe gloves, hat, and apple. It doesn’t influence the handling much at all; to the extent that it does, it slows turning down a bit which can be a positive thing on the Fridays, in my opinion.
I’ve done some trips with just front panniers and a bikepacking type saddle bag. That actually worked just fine, too, and is a popular setup on bikes with low trail front geometry that are intended for a front load. I find the geometry on the Fridays to be so forgiving, that I haven’t encountered a setup I didn’t get on with!
I have been touring on an electrified Tikit since 2012. I use front hub motors, a throttle (not pedelec) and 36v batteries with a capacity of about 14aH. The number of batteries and the type of motor I use varies according to the intended tour.
For instance, for the west of Scotland I took 2 batteries and used a slow but high torque motor (top speed only 18km hour) which had no trouble dragging the Tikit and suitcase trailer up the hills.
For a more recent trip through some of the river valleys of central Europe I used only 1 battery and a faster (but less powerful) motor (top speed about 30km hour) (panniers without trailer this time)
I started to experiment with electric assist about 4 years ago with an old mountain bike, and ended up loving the concept. So over the past 4 years I have converted 4 of my bikes to electric assist, including my Air Friday. I use the same motor on all four, a 250 Watt front wheel motor with throttle control and a 12Ah 36V battery. The best thing about the motor I use, a Golden Motor 902, is that it is a geared motor and has a one-way clutch. This means the motored wheel offers no resistance to rotation when the spring-loaded throttle is off, so the bike pedals exactly the same as it did without the motor.
The system adds about 18 lb to the weight of the bike, but this doesn’t matter much except on hills, so I use the motor only on hills. The electric assist turns a hilly ride into a flat ride, and enables me to still gets lots of exercise and fully participate in and enjoy all my club rides. I am 83 years old and can now keep up with the best of them.
An important topic! Thanks for digging in.
I have one concern: The growing use of electric pedal assist bicycles on our public lands, where ‘motorized recreation’ is not allowed. Growing numbers of cyclists are adding power to their machines and riding ‘under the RADAR’, ignoring the intent of the restrictions on motorized recreation.
Riding my Silk in the Portland Bridge Pedal two years ago. Passing a grandfather with grandson on a narrow bridge he commented “at least I am not using an electric motor!”. Neither was I but this shows many Americans still fail to see the value electric motors can bring to aging legs going up hills (and bridges). We need to get over our prejudice in many areas.
I look forward to the results of your study Alan. Thank you for investigating this topic.
I got back into biking after retirement with an electric bike, then moved on to my Bike Friday once I had enough skill and strength. Now I just opted in on Kickstarter for the Urbanx wheel (20″ available) to be able to swap out my front wheel in those instances I want to do some major climbing (bad knee) or keep up with my adult son. The battery is airline legal, it has throttle and pedal assist. Will be interesting to see when I get it what kind of range it has in reality. Weight including wheel and tire is 15 pounds, not bad, not great. I’d love to see BF come up with a quickly removed system around 8-10 pounds that doesn’t cost as much as a new bike =).
I really enjoyed biking for 4 days in Austria last fall on pedal-assisted bikes. All my taller friends got awesome Bosch batteries with real TURBO assist! My small bike had much less “assist” by comparison. I had to pedal like crazy, muscling to get the heavy bike, battery and motor up the same hills my friends were cruising up. Nonetheless we did a lovely 20 miles a day with lots of stops for exploring and had lots of energy left in the evening. I’m intrigued by the idea of adding an assist to my nearly vintage Pocket Lama!
I am from SIngapore and would like to do a solo ride in sept. Can i get some advice from you?
Those who oppose electric assist need to get educated. In the US, most cities max speed at 20mph which any reasonably fit millennial can sustain on a bike. Many of the systems only go 15 mph, which I can do at 67 years of age without assist. But, I like many others, cannot climb hills due to a bad knee so in those instances where my route requires hill climbing, it’s either pedal assist or driving a car. What’s better….another car on the road or a bike with electric assist? The whole issue of off-road e bikes and speeds is an entirely different matter – and there needs to be some sort of controls or regulations for off road as a 28mph+ e bike is more like a dirt bike than a bicycle.
We love our Bike Fridays. Linda has a New World Tourist in power raspberry. Mine is black. I have many bikes to choose from, but I frequently choose Bike Friday.
We have taken them with us on vacations in Bon Air, Savannah, and Richmond. It is always a pleasure to have our own bikes with us.
We ride them to fireworks on July 4th. w/ lights
The bike geeks at Bike Friday did an excellent job fiting and “speccing” our bikes.
Go Bike Friday!
Big Apples vs Holy Rollers: For pavement but also some gravel rail trails and fire roads — which would you pick now? Or, has a new tire enticed you since writing this… (for a BF HaD…) Cheers.
I too order a helmet via the Indiegogo site after reading about the helmet in Time magazine (Nov’16). I was given a Mch’17 delivery time but still yet to materialise. I have tried emailing but no response. I will follow the ‘tip’ above and email Geeta directly. Thanks.
This is exactly what we would like to do! How did you attach the chariot to the bike? It looks like you did not use the standard axle mount.
Thanks for inquiring! Pretty cool set up, right?
The way that this is attached is with a mount that is part of the rear hub’s skewer- here’s an image of that part: https://www.bikeshophub.com/wp-content/uploads/1371-thule-chariot-bike-trailer-cycling-kit-sport-touring.jpg
One thing that’s nice about this mount is that it holds trailer low enough to clear all the low hanging parts of the bicycle frame, like the foot rests and kickstand.
Hope this helps!
I built my 205 sqft house in 2002. I’ve had my Pocket Llama for about 20 years and 25,000 miles; for the last decade it’s been my primary transportation (car free). 2006-8 I traveled half time on it, over 12,000 miles all over the western US, Mexico, Guatemala, and a winter in Florida. I love the life! I must admit that being retired helps. And living simply allows early retirement on not so much money.
What an adventure! Thanks for sharing.
very nice story. I’m glad that you guys keep sending these interesting links – I’m a very big fan of BF (both the bikes and the company) and it’s great to see how seriously some people take these bikes (and seriously use them too!).
I started talking with Bike Friday a year ago about electrifying our Tikits, my wife and mine. I was asking for a recommendation of an after market product that could provide an electric assist. I was told to wait if I could, Bike Friday was thinking of electrifying.
Conversations continued until in September 2016, I ordered two e-assists for our Tikits. We were told it would take a while as they were still considering vendors.
In November 2016, we left out Tikits with Bike Friday and began our wait. In time, we were told they would be ready next year, early 2017. In April 2017, we picked up the e-Tikits.
We have been riding them since and they are great. We use them as an assist, over hills, into the wind and to catch up. We use the lowest setting so we have no idea how long they will run on a charge.
Reception by other bikers has been very positive. It goes like, what are those little bikes, what no chain, a belt and a hub, amazing. Then, are they electric? Wow!
Finally, we are 77 and 76 years old and if all goes right, getting older. We see our e-Tikits as a way to gracefully ride into our future.
Increible!!!!! Un viaje fantastico.
This is excellent! Very inspiring. Great photos
Thanks so much 🙂
Loved reading your itinerary, Aaron 😊
I love my Bike Friday too
(and call it my vvBF!)
One of the best parts of your story is
that you give credit to the Creator
where it’s due.
Joyous Journies and Good Wishes
Thanks Leah. 🙂 Hope to continue to travel more and connect more with our creator 🙂
Thanks for the story of your travels in Tasmania. I really enjoyed it and definitely want to visit Tasmania.
Glad u enjoyed the story. Really do check out Tasmania on 2 wheels! 🙂
Great reading! Thankyou so much! Tasmania could be our next destination ..my husband and I both have Pocket Rockets…we love them! Last December we flew from Los Angeles to Melbourne…we rode our bikes on many wonderful paths there.We also just arrived back from 10days of riding our Bike Fridays in the Alsace region of France…there was much challenging terrain and our Pocket Rockets,performed perfectly!
Love learning of more “great rides”…..Thanks Again!
Pocket Rockets are amazing bikes. It’s a model of the Bike Friday family i wished to own too 🙂
Lovely adventures u have. Do share with the community if u can 🙂
Great article! You’ve helped inspire my next trip. Thanks!
Just do it man 😉
Thanks Wendy 🙂
Thanks for such an enjoyable article on cycling in Tasmania. Why not consider cycling in Victoria – the other side of Bass Straight. The Great Ocean Road is stunning cycling and we’d love to show you the wonderful rides around Geelong. I’m fascinated that you did your tour on a Tikit.
Ah yes the great ocean road! I was there on a day tour. Would love to do that one day. So many things to do and so little time.
Really inspiring reading about your trips! Quick question, where did you leave your bicycle bag once you arrived or did you carry it along with you?
I spent my 1st night in Hobart city. Spent the day fixing up my Tikit and doing some test rides to ensure all is good before i setoff for my round island adventure. The hostel is very kind to let me store my bike luggage and whatever i don’t need in their luggage storage area. When i returned , i did spend my last night in that same lodging as well.
Enjoyed your article. I have been to Tasmania many times, but never did it on a bicycle. Your descriptions were perfect.
I love my New World Bike and a friend and I have biked some terrific “rail to trail” rides. It has opened up a hugh new way of being able to go so many places and bike. Thanks for sharing.
I would think the New World Tourist will be a great bike to tour Tasmania and the ability to haul more luggage compared to the Tikit. I am more than glad to share my adventure 🙂
Thank you for the story and beautiful photos. So much to see in Tasmania. So glad you enjoyed it, despite the weather.
I guessed i had it worst in Iceland, haha. Glad u enjoyed my mini adventure in Tassie 🙂 yea the weather, thankful for the rainbows for cheering me up.
Did you happen to save your route in some gps format. If so I would love to see it. We’re doing basically the same trip next March.
Hey hi. Awesome, the weather hopefully wouldn’t be as cold as what i went through. Yes i have my route on Strava. More than happy to share it. Drop me an email at email@example.com 🙂
Congratulations on the Blogs and Rides. It’s one thing Riding and taking everything in and another to be able to picture it and blog about it. Your bike sure looks great. I’m sure considering a Bike Friday just to find out what it’s all about. I have toured similarly on my Brompton and right now live half the time in a small Villiage in Northern Thailand where cycling is to dream about.
Thanks for enjoying my post 🙂 indeed it is quite a challenge for me trying to balance the top priority being safety, completing the ride and getting pictures. Honestly i was very tempted to board the bus back to hobart and say that’s it, thankfully all went well. I owned the Tikit 1st before a 2 speed brompton. Both are awesome bikes by the way. Did a short tour of Japan on the brompton and it performed great as well. It’s an awesome bike. The Bike Friday bicycles are a unique experience. At least to me, i always found the bike Friday’s having a more road bike feel to it. Same kojaks tyres and somehow the Tikit just goes faster. The Pakit has the same “Bike Friday” ride and it never felt like a small wheelie. Wow will be nice to read about your tours in northern Thailand 🙂
Thanks for sharing your Pakit experience 🙂 i do find the gates belt drive Pakit a nice experience, especially when your packing it in a suitcase and i was like omg, no worries of my other bags or anything touching a greasy chain!!
Thirteen years later, that Lovemarks Prius is still on the road, now at 157,000 miles, still with Richard Vallens!!
Bikes are the most fashionable things in modern life style . I’m searching this strong and fashionable bikes .
What an inspiration you are Molly! I plan to get back to tri training after reading this.
Its a pity I cant source Bike Friday bikes in Australia.
I am still interested in the Pocket Rocket…but that is but a dream unless I stay in the US long enough for you guys to make one to fit me! ( I am just short of 5 ft). I was in New Orleans last yr, but that is a long way from you guys! and nothing in the Eastern states.
Had been writing for a while in the past to Robbie Dow of Bike Friday . He was very helpful.
I might just have to day dream about this bike!
Elvira , Brisbane, Australia
You can absolutely have a Bike Friday delivered to you in Australia! Plenty of people have and continue to. We are very skilled at building custom bikes for people at a distance, in fact, the majority of people we build for never actually ever set foot in our shop! We’ve built 1000’s of bicycles this way and we have a great track record. And to top it off, we have a 30 money back guarantee, no questions asked- so if it doesn’t fit you just the way you want it to, you can send it right back to us at 0 risk to you.
Robbie doesn’t work here any longer, but we’ve got a solid team that can help you get the perfect bike for you. Can I have one of our reps reach out to you? Let’s make that dream a reality!
We did two rides together with Basil in Mexico. You were truly an inspiration. Looks from the pictures that you have a new Bike Friday or maybe my memory is not what it should be. Anyway you were a real inspiration for me and I often tell of the lady arriving on her BikeFriday, grey hair flying out from the helmet, all alone to a small town outside of Meridia. The group celebrated one of your milestone birthdays there.
It was you and other riders on various tours in Mexico that convinced me that BikeFridays were real touring bikes and for me to become a happy BikeFriday owner.
Obviously the years have gone on and you are still riding. Another great inspiration.
May the rides continue.
It’s great to show people us octogenarians can still get around under our own steam, I only reached the magic 80 this summer but shortly I’m off from where I live in England (Penn) with my “New World Tourist” to the northern most part of the British Isles The Shetland Isles and Orkneys. With our train service it can sometimes be difficult to get your bike on a train, but if the worst happens it folds and becomes baggage. With that in mind my Bike Friday using rail has taken me to France and many times to Bonny Scotland. It’s not my only bike I have several normal cycles with 700c wheels and most weeks cover over 100 miles with my cycling club friends on one of them, so life doesn’t end at eighty, but maybe starts!!
I loved this story. I have worked with the Telluride Adaptive Sports Program for 18 years. Some of my most inspiring adventures have been with autistic young people. They have almost always taught me important lessons of what it means to be human. My best wishes go out to this brave family, and hope they continue the adventure. If skiing is on their list of adventures Patch would be welcome in Telluride.
Dear Clint. So great to hear from you and your Sports Program sounds really impressive. We are absolutely committed to creating global change and are working to produce an educational short film on embracing autism. It would be amazing if you could share our kickstarter campaign with your networks to encourage people to contribute so we can make our film happen. Here’s the link https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/428257810/school-of-the-road-autism-and-adventure-documentar
Thank you Clint and all the best for a great winter program in Telluride, Travis
Wow, what a beautiful collection of bike goodness! Long live n+1; love our Haul-a-Day, but sometimes it’d be nice to have a bike just for lil’ ol’ me ❤️
Thanks Lindsay! So glad you’re loving your Haul-a-Day, and maybe this could be the bike that’s just for you!
What an inspiring story 🙂
Thanks Aaron! We’re really lucky to have Hanna at the helm, she’s a great leader and inspiration to all of us here at the factory
Great story of persistence.
Thanks Shawn! If Hanna’s anything, she’s persistent 😊
Great story, great product. I’m in!
Awesome, thanks Tracy!
Diane, thanks for sharing your Pakit experience. I have a yellow Pakit and in love with the bike. Its so easy to pack in a suitcase for air travel and great for exploring around the city. Like you, I am looking forward to my next adventure on the Pakit. Great photos and story
Have you reached 200 yet? Are you close? I’d be glad to sign up if it’s available.
Thank you for reaching out about the Morpher Helmet! This offer is no longer available through us, but you can order directly from Morpher themselves- https://www.morpherhelmet.com/
Love the article! I’m a fan of Hanna and the whole Scholz family. I’ve been a Bike Friday owner since 1994 and have collected a garage full of wonderful Bike Fridays. Go, Hanna–the best days are ahead!
Thank you Bruce! Your support means the world to us!
Purchased a “Pre-loved” Tiket 2 years ago.Traveled to Eugene OR to pickup.Staff was great in every way shape and form.”Keep on Trucking” Bike Friday!
Thank you Scott, we really appreciate your support!!!
I have liked the idea of Bike Friday for years but not bike seats. I have been riding recumbents for about 25 years. Felt in heaven when I found a pre-owned Bike Saturday a few years ago. A folding bike and a seat I liked. Have been trying to get to Cottage Grove, Or. to visit my brother and Eugene to visit Green Gear. Perhaps 2018 will be the year. Love the story of Hanna and Bike Friday. Best of luck to you.
Thank you Jerry! We hope to see you here soon!
Heey is this the same Newton from this youtube video from a Brompton?! Did he switch?
Sure is! He did, he went from two Bromptons and one Bike Friday to two Bike Fridays and one Brompton!
I hope you took notice of Dahon’s new Curl. Not the fold, but the weight capacity. It is ironic that i just invested in Bike Friday, but chose a Curl over a Haul A Day because it properly filled my needs. Just something to ponder.
Thank you so much for investing in Bike Friday! We’re glad that you support the mission of the company, and we’re looking forward to working with you as a part owner of Bike Friday. Thanks for pointing out the Curl, we’ve taken a look at it and noticed that it does have some nice features, we’re a little confused about your comment on the weight capacity, however. The Haul-a-Day, which starts at 33 lbs., can carry up to 420 lbs of combined rider and cargo weight, whereas the Curl (which weighs 27.6 lbs.) can carry only a max of 286 lbs. combined rider and cargo weight. As far as we can tell from the information on Dahon’s Kickstarter, the Haul-a-Day only weighs 6 pounds more, but can carry up to 134 lbs more than the Curl. Is there something that we missed?
The Bike Friday Team
The account of the PakiT in Hungary was interesting. I have 1997 Companion purchased by my father that I have put drop bars and a racing seat on. It rides well, but is heavier and harder to pack.
Thanks Mike, we’re glad you enjoyed the story! We’d love to see a picture of your souped up Companion- send us a shot at firstname.lastname@example.org
Newton, Wow what an adventure! And yes, biking in Europe is wonderful. If you go to Denmark, I’d like to make a suggestion. My mom, born and raised in Denmark during the occupation by the Nazis, spent summers in Denmark. In her sixties, she decided to bike across sections of Denmark. Each year was different — she had themes. My favorite year — and she took a group a ladies with her — was “old” churches. Yup. In Europe old is something over 1,000 years. So, we got to see lots of beautiful Viking churches. Of course, we also had way more pictures in the pubs next to the churches! Seems churches used to product drinkable liquids for their members. . . .
We in Jakarta would like to see if you can continue (no no to discontinue) Tikit – “tikit or live it”
Hi Atjep, we wish that we could continue the tikit, but it is not possible for us 🙁
I am curious about Newton’s saddle. Loved the travelogue!
Hey Juliann! Isn’t it a great story? The saddle that Newton has on his pakiT is a WTB Volt Comp.
Great write up; I really enjoyed this. What rear hub does Newton have on his pakiT?
Thanks Chris! Pretty great adventure. Newton’s bike has a Shimano Alfine 11 speed internally geared hub, it’s one of our favorites 🙂
Any chance you will go back and try to create a good folding stem that can be retrofitted to both the 20″ BF and the PakiT for those who want it? I know the first one had issues, but not having any loose parts is really helpful for multi-modal commuting. Even the snap-on PakiT stem is less than ideal. Pretty much every decent folding bike out there has a folding stem. You guys are so smart I know you can come up with something brilliant. And just imagine … once we power up our BF and go to fold them, we’ve got the batteries to carry so a fully attached system would be that much easier.
Every day when I ride one of my 3 Fridays (including a pink Speeding tikit and a classic Pocket Rocket Pro Petite) I flash back to the incredible 9 years I spent at the company being given free reign to do what I love best – jive with customers, many of whom I remain friends with today. I even see old pals in these comments! It was a job that left me with nothing on my bucket list – something not many careers can offer. The Scholz family is one of most tenacious, inventive and deeply principled entrepreneurial units you could ever work for. Their creativity with the simple wheel ‘n’ steel is astounding – check out this little “tour” of their 2006 catalog showing the breadth of their talent: https://youtu.be/in31HJkj2-Y . It would be easier for them to churn out a “me-too” product with no personality, but I remember Hanz telling me that’s of zero interest to them – that startup energy and creativity is what makes their product – and breed of customer – so fascinating.
The only thing stopping me from getting another BF is… living in a 236 sqft studio!
Small wheels, small footprint, big life: that’s what I do on a Friday.
Lynette! Its so good to hear from you. I am happy to hear that you continue to remember your Bike Friday tenure fondly. I learned so much from your incredible creative talent and passion for communicating the joy of cycling and grabbing life by the handlebars and living fully doing what you love. Your wizardry with words brought a lot to Bike Friday marketing and the on-line community. I still love the head-badge you designed and the “Performance that Packs” tag-line you coined. You added a lot to what Bike Friday has become. Thank you again for sharing so much of yourself with all of us.
Best in two wheeled adventures till your 101!
Wow…didn’t know things had gotten so tough! Glad you folks are on the upswing. Nice to support a company that is woman run, made in USA and sustainable.
“Small wheels, small footprint, big life: that’s what I do on a Friday.” great line from the previous comment
very nice post keep up the good work.
I bought my BF two years ago from an American lady working here in Ireland. It had been purchased as one of a pair back in 2006 and had belonged to her deceased husband. My main reason for buying a folder was to be able to bring it on public transport without having to reserve a bike space in advance. I just love using it to carry everything from camera gear to bottles for the bottlebank and for all my local shopping and social trips. I took it in the suitcase to the Nederlands this Summer and had many a conversation with Dutch people about its great qualities.
Hi km chris from indonesia. i plan to visit japan for 3rd time in june 2018. is there any community of folding bike in japam? im looking friends for touring and doing some picture photography
I would suggest you make a similar post on our Facebook Community group, there are a lot of Japanese riders, and they might have more information about the possibility of meeting up. Here’s where you can find that group.
Thank you for writing. Useful to encourage me to try it.
I am also very interested in electric assist for my wife NWT so I am waiting for BF to do something about.The battery must be something that you can carry on a plane
Glad to hear you are interested, a solution to this is already in the works. If you want to call in to our offices and let one of our design consultants know what you’re thinking so you can be first in line when it is available!
Well I sincerely liked reading it. This information provided by you is very helpful Thank you.
I want to do this! Is there a product available to allow the Piccolo to connect onto the deck of a cargo bike? Thanks!
This is something we have talked about and made a few prototypes for but have never made it into a final product…I believe this photo shows a DIY solution. If you are desperately stuck call in and talk to our service department who may have some ideas, but we unfortunately don’t have any solutions to offer. Sorry!
Great journal. Let’s hear it for ripio.
Usually I do not read post on blogs, however I woould like to say that thios write-upvery compelled me too try and do it!
Your writing style has been mazed me. Thanks, quite great post.
We have ridden our New World Tourists in the Bahamas, Germany (twice), Italy, and next month in the Dolomites (Italy again). What a great way to travel: fly in, assemble bike, sleep, leave suitcases, ride, train back, pack up in same hotel, and then fly back. Thank you for such an amazing bike.
My favorite part of this article is when you said that we should focus on getting a good set of wheels. As a new biker, I am still learning on each and every aspect of biking, such as the type of wheels or tires, accessories, and so on and so forth. I started with it as a form of exercise only but now, I already love biking!
I was wondering if you used the Bafang BBSHD. WHY would you get rid of the throttle? That is a safety feature to get through intersections with traffic. I unfortunately have a folding bike with a Bionx hub; because they have gone into receivership, that motor is toast when the battery dies. I will never buy another proprietary motor again. I thought that I’d like the BBSHD on a Haul A Day, but not if you’re limiting it, either the max speed or by not including the throttle. I’d rather get a Luna kit and put one on myself, maybe. I’ve never done anything like that before.
The main reason…we first and foremost are a cyclist company and the throttle goes against what we believe in. It’s a big one for us and it’s important to keep peddling which in the end is actually safer when on two wheels. We are very excited how well the E-Bike Assist system is working not only for us but for so many who have bought the system from us and using it. If you have not tried one yet then we encourage you to do this as you will find that the E-Assist system works perfectly in intersections with traffic among so many other situations you would hope to have a little help in. Hope this helps clarify our thoughts and again we hope you can try one out for yourself to see that we chose this system for many great reasons.
Because of the 11.5″ high BB on my P Llama, in a fast stop (disc brakes that’s real fast) I could not get a foot down* ,
so fell off to the side and in stopping my fall cracked a bone in my wrist..
* Normally I shift my weight onto one foot and put the other down, as I get off the saddle..
Or stop with 1 foot on the curb.
I know this is going to sound funny but I found this picture of an old friend of mine (above) Jodi Sahi. I have lost contact with her and this is the only site I’ve seen her on. If you know her personally could you pass the word to her that Allison Miller (friend from Mount Shasta) would like to get back in touch and pass her my email address ….email@example.com.
If she just bought a bike from you and you don’t know her personally Im sorry to bother you
Due to a motorcycle accident my legs don’t work as well as they used to. Until recently, one of the things I missed most was bicycling. That is no longer an issue, however, due to a (cheap) e-bike I purchased. My found-again freedom brings me great joy!
Having now put many miles on my e-bike, I realize I want and need something of higher quality and reliability. It was Bike Friday’s reputation on those fronts that brought me here. And with great excitement, I was happy to see you offer an e-bike. That happiness was crushed, however, after reading this blog.
For many of us, a throttle is not the ‘cheat’ that you’ve presumed. Rather, it’s a necessity that allows us to put the bike in motion, and to safely cross intersections. Quite frankly, I find your anti-throttle creed to be pretentious, sanctimonious and close minded.
I do want to thank you for posting this blog, however. You’ve saved me from wasting further valuable life exploring the purchase of one of your bikes.
Good afternoon Charles. It is clear that you have not tried one of the E-Assist systems that we offer yet as you would know that this actually works as well if not better than the throttle system. If you have the chance to try a bike with E-Assist on it you will understand how it works better and fairly certain you will change your mind. We as a cyclist driven company, have to stay true to our hearts when building bikes and who we build bikes for. If you wish to just sit and push a button, our bikes are not the right choice for your needs. We hope you find what you are looking for and all the best!
You want to build a spinning broom, with really strong bristles. You’d have to tap into the gearing ti get it spinning fast enough to flick the glass far enough to the side.
Brings back memories of circumnavigating Moorea, the island pictured in the post by bicycle. Unfortunately it was done on borrowed folding bikes not on a BF. Would have been a much better ride on a my NWT but still was a memorable ride. This more than a couple of decades ago and much of the road was unpaved but there was virtually no traffic. Would be interesting to go back to do the ride again to see the changes.
I just recently demoed an electric cargo bike for two weeks. I had never been on an e-assist bike at all before that. With a 70lb bike and a 750W motor, I was able to:
-Go to several meetings for work that I would have had to drive to, to otherwise.
-get up gut-busting hills with an easy effort and not break a sweat, thus going to those meetings in non-sweaty business attire (again, these are meetings I would have had to drive to)
-Make it to my son’s school from my office (normally a ride that takes too long to do and make pickup in time)
-bring my son home from his school.
-perform site visits and other work tasks that would normally require and are often more difficult to do with a car.
I’m sold. Seriously considering electrifying our Friday tandem now.
If you have the chance you should test a Haul-A-Day cargo bike. Just like your tandem, the low center-of-gravity really makes riding a pleasure and even more so with kids on the back. I personally am in love with the system coming from a Yuba Mundo and feel the difference more than most because it truly is so different. Hope you can try one out.
Thank you…it is fixed now. I think when we did the new website a bunch of the old links didn’t connect to the content so there are broken links all over our site. Not making Google too happy with that but not sure how to track them all down…other than time. Thanks for your eyes on this one. Cheers!
How did he get bike from Oregon to NYC? Did dealer in NYC put it together? Cost of delivery for new or previously owned bike Friday?
Hello there Bob. He just went through one of our bike builders to order his bikes. As he was very knowledgeable about folding bikes I am pretty sure he was able to put his bike together with ease when it got to him but we could confirm this. Thankfully our bikes fold so easily that it’s not hard to put them back together again and get on the road quickly. On my last trip I had my pakIt back together in about 6 minutes and a Haul-A-Day back together and riding in about 10 minutes. First time traveling with bikes and it was much easier than I expected. Cheers!
Great trip report. I enjoyed your descriptions and explanations of the different places that you visited.
Garmin and Ride with GPS are great tools, but they can give you some confusing directions at times. If only I could find decent maps.
Look forward to next year’s trip.
Do you expect that Bike Friday will do better or worse if there is a trade war between the US and China?
Great essay, and your shout-out to Worksman made it even greater!
So how will the recent tariff imposed on foreign suppliers affect the bicycle industry? Will it help promote more “Made in the USA” products or just increase the cost of bikes?
The US government’s attempt to repatriate manufacturing industries by means of tariffs will result in the creation of an economy in which Americans sell only to Americans, since their products will be too expensive to compete on world markets, and in which US consumers must accept higher prices and reduced choice (among inferior products, since no nation on earth can be a leader in every field). By closing itself off from global markets the US will create a manufacturing economy which begins to resemble that of the old USSR. Small manufacturers like yourselves deserve sympathy and support. I hope you and others like you will succeed in making the Congress see sense before it is too late.
I fully support what you are trying to do. I am not from the USA but the idea of using local skills to produce the product is something that many countries also need to support. PEOPLE are the mainstay of a thriving economy, not corporations.
I bought my Bike Friday because I could customize it and get exactly what I wanted. A tandem that would fit me and my wife with the components that we wanted. In other cases I start with a bike that has a lot of what I want then have to spend hundreds on customizing it. As long as the frame is the right size and shape that is possible.
There are a few things that I have changed on my bike friday because I had to have it done to a price. Once you include exchange rates it isn’t a cheap bike. Later as the money became available I swapped a few things to match my riding style.
Congratulations on what you have done already. And I wish you all success in the future.
Just thank you.
My Bike Friday is a special member of the family!
I hope that you continue to build you bicycles for the benefit of mankind
Thank you for this excellent post! I agree with the notion of building bikes, as well as ALL products used and sold in America to be made here.
That said, I recently received a petition from your company soliciting signatures to oppose Donald Trump’s tariffs on imported Chinese and other foreign goods. Although the immediate effects of tariffs are to potentially harm U.S. consumers, the long-term purpose and strategy of these tariffs is to force the other nations to bring their trade practices into a more equitable standing with the U.S. For many years, these nations have unfairly “baked in” tariffs and Government subsidies to their products. China is notorious for “dumping” steel at below-market values, manipulating its currency, and blatantly violating US copyright laws, all of which affects your bottom line directly.
Does Bike Friday support these unfair trade practices for short-term relief, or would your company rather return to a time when the US can compete on a more balanced playing field? I encourage you to educate yourselves and support the strategies of this administration, as President Trump is FULLY in support of your notion of returning manufacturing jobs and entrepreneurism back to the United States!
Thanks for building great bikes!
I received two new hips in 2015, and in 2016 I sold my Subaru, and bought a NWT from Bike Friday…how’s my carbon reduction?
I’m jealous! Is my Pocket Rocket a good touring bike? I’ve never toured on it.
It very well can be depending on how you set it up. We have many customers who us their Pocket Rockets for credit-card tours where they don’t need any camping gear. We make many bikes for many needs and the Pocket Rocket is a fun bike for places like Germany on the wine roads. Best way to findout…book a trip. Cheers!
Nice story and not surprised you found that taking your Friday bikes no problem at all. I often have wished I had purchased my Pocket Rocket when I was working, as it would have been great to have it on many business trips to do some exploring in the evenings.
Nevertheless, the Pocket Rocket has been on trips to Canada, USA, Cuba, France, Germany, Czech Republic, and Austria.
Tell us about your choice of bags vs the hard case if you could?
Well with the Haul-A-Day it was pretty easy…it was about 3 days before I was going to leave and I knew I had a bag which it would fit in so the choice was easy. To get it into a hard-case would have been more work and more work when I got to Germany as well. The trip was a quick one so time wasn’t something I had a lot of for building and tearing down bikes so it was the logical choice. Happy it worked out as it was easy and fun to have the bike we love most along for the ride. Cheers!
Can anyone who has packed a haul a day please share if you were able to check it as standard size luggage? Or was an oversized fee necessary?
I enjoyed your story. It reminded me of a two week business trip I took to Germany five years ago. Germany is a super bike friendly country, and riding my personal PR allowed me to better experience the small things that you miss when riding in a motor vehicle. I kept it folded in the back of my rental car, which is really the way to do it to keep on top the extra food and drinks consumed.
I live with my in-laws when I am over there and boy do I understand the extra food and drinks. Thankful we had bikes this time as well. Cheers!
Outstanding story and accomplishment, Cassandra. In every pic you look like you’re having a ball. Love that “Cuba es Nuestra” sign: great prop for BF “portrait.” I lust after a BF, continue to receive all sorts of enticements from corporate. Almost bought a Brompton, but can’t see a tour on the 17″ wheels being as rewarding as a BF’s 20″ set up. By the way, I have owned a Giant foldy Expressway for several years, ride it often, but plan no touring. Do you know that bike? Any comparison you could make with with your BF would be very helpful. Via la bici BF! And many more exciting adventures for you.
Would lilke to hear about some of your other tours.
Thanks, all! My wesbsite is http://www.escapingNY.com and you can find tours there! I’ve already heard from quite a few Bike Friday owners and would love to have some of you on one of my tours!
Everything is very open with a clear explanation of the issues.
It was really informative. Your website is very
helpful. Thank you for sharing!
I loved reading this whole journey, but I can’t view the photos– I just see a little sliver of moving panels and the arrows to move right or left. Can you fix this, please? I’m dying to see them! I especially enjoyed the haiku.
Link to our latest journal, a six week, relaxed trip along the Rhone river in Switzerland and France on Pearl, our Bike Friday tandem using the suitcase/trailer set up.
We have loved our tandem and I have loved my NWT. Together they have been a part of many good memories of bike travel. And, what better way is there for traveling?
I live in Sydney, Australia and ordered my Pocket Rocket late last year. I gave Bike Friday my normal bike measurements and they custom built it for me. It arrived early in March ’18 and after putting it together, it fitted beautifully and I am very pleased with my Pocket Rocket. The courier service will handle the custom clearance for you.
Hello I will send you a mail for the first time.
I run a bicycle store in kyoto. The name of the shop is XIE BICYCLE.
I want to become a BIKE FRIDAY dealer.
What kind of contract is necessary to become a dealer.
Thank you for reading.
Hello there. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org and they will take it from there.
What is the gear-inch range for the pakiT with belt drive and 8-speed
We actually have a wide range we can put on a pakiT so you may have to tell us what you are hoping for and we can get one of our Bike Experts to put something together for you.
If you need more information on this great trip I had leave a comment and I should be alerted. I am in Australia
Inspiring Shirley……well done
If I am 6’1″ 220 lbs and wanted something that has front abd back bag holders what would you recommend. I have a Pak It for commuting now. I would like to use the bike for commuting too for work 15 miles each way and use on the train…is that possible?
Stephan is sending you an email now. Stay tuned and happy trails!
We have done the length of the Loire on our Tandem Tuesday….and then packed it up and headed home. Thanks Bike Friday.
I am interested on the pakiT belt drive one or 4 gears. I want the lightest possible bike to help me commute on the Bart when in San Francisco. I was wondering about the heights and if possible how fast each bike cango?
Hello Ronald. The pakiT is perfect for San Francisco though you might be a little limited by the 4-speed on some of those hills. Not sure what you mean by the heights but as far as speed, it really depends on your not the bike. I average 12-15mph on my pakiT but average 19-22 on my Haul-a-Day due to better gearing and even faster when I have assist on. It’s always best to connect with our bike experts for these kinds of questions so please drop them a line when you have time. email@example.com or call 1-800-777-0258. Cheers!
How many bikes is enough to have a “fleet”? Do you have examples of programs that have used a grant to help purchase bikes? What is your bulk pricing?
Hello Betsy. I sent your contact info over to our bike experts and they should be able to help you. All the best and happy cycling! J.
Hi im interested in the diamond. can it accommodate drop bars and can it accommodate 20 inch by 2.4 tires? lastly 1 x set up? thanks 40t x 42 cassette? or some 1x set up that is also good for the top end
Hello Rob. Hoping you have heard back from one of our bike experts and got all your questions answered. In the end, we are a custom bike builder and we can do almost any set-up you prefer on our frames. Hope you find what you are looking for and get the chance to explore the world by bike. Cheers! J.
I am 5 ft and have a short reach. I always use a small frame. is your bike one size fits all cuz i know that won’t work for me. do all foldup bikes come in one size frame?
I will need to put 2 bike panniers on the rear wheel. so does your bike have a rear bike frame to accommodate this?
8 speed chain drive vs 8speed belt drive. I get from your video the belt drive is grease free.
You sell the backpack for commuting on a train do you sell the luggage as in your video?
Hello Emma. I just forwarded all of your questions to our bike experts to get back to you. All of these questions are super easy for them to answer but the easiest answer is, we are a custom bike builder so most can be answered just with that, but they will expand on that from there. All the best and thanks for reaching out. J.
І сouldn’t rеfrain from commenting. Well written!
I was starting to get pissed off that my very recent BF e-upgrade did not ship with Micro-Burst Technology, until I put my glasses on 🙂
Happy to bring you full-circle on emotions today. We had to have a little fun with this one and being a Dad(Jarl here), Lego mini-figs come easy around these parts. All the best and I look forward to seeing how the Micro-Burst Technology works for you! Cheers!
I’m another long time cyclist who thought he’d only want an e-bike in his dotage. My commute to work is 35 miles and 2000 feet each way. I would bike that a few times per year, but mostly rode the bike for exercise after driving the commute. Last year it finally clicked, I put an electric kit on an old bike and it turns out I can commute on the e-bike a couple days per week and leave the car at home. Mornings are cool enough I can get to work without breaking a sweat, which sounds minor but is a big issue since we do not have showers. The e-bike looks like it will actually pay for itself soon, my direct gas and toll cost of about $14-16 per day is replaced by 1.2 kW-h of re-charge, or about $0.25.
Good story and great perspective Rick. Thanks for sharing. We are going to get a bunch more company here as people discover this. In the series coming up we will get that cost to ride down to near zero!
I am another one who for now says not for me! However I have been diagnosed with ALS, but Great news is that there is true hope! I am in a phase one drug study that is aimed at curing my genetic form of ALS! Remember the ice bucket challenge, that helped find these drugs! For now I will continue to say no. Partly because my NWT has crossed the U.S. from Florence to Bar Harbor Maine and the Pacific Coast from Bellingham to San Diego both sides self supported me. I have real hope that another is possible!
Hello John. Sounds like you have a story to share about what you are going through and how you are fighting the good fit, using two wheels to help fight that good fight. Are you willing to share your story and maybe some pictures to help inspire others to fight their own fight and stay healthy both physically and mentally as well? Thank you for sharing and we look forward to supporting you in any way we can in your journey!
I love my e-bike!! I am 82 and biked the Erie Canal last year with my friend. We both had Bike Fridays New World
Tourist, but I added the e-assist. I am biking the Columbia River Gorge this year (both ways) and a 100+ ride up by Sisters, Oregon in June. I ordered 3 more batteries as found that I would run out of juice on the long rides 40-45 miles. My 3 batteries pretty well max out at about 32 miles. I ride petty much in the #2 speed most of the time, but can use the extra for a boost up a very steep grade. I noticed your article “Riding on Sunshine” and was wondering if you have
added some kind of mechanism that is using sunshine to help power the bike?? Please let me know and if so, can this
be added to the already existing e-assist bikes? I have to switch out my batteries with the new ones I bought to get
the extra distance and can’t take the 6 batteries on the airplane, so am shipping 3 of them to my friend in Oregon and she will bring them to me. I talked with a lady this winter that says her electric bike charges while she is
riding. Forgot what the make of it is.
Marrianna, an impressive group of trips. It is encouraging for so many of us. The purpose of my future articles going forward is to try and answer those questions. From my experience to date to charge your batteries by solar takes about a 2 ft by 2ft solar collector about 6 hours in full sun. Just round numbers but a 50 watt collector I have is about 2×2. My battery is 300 watt hrss. Your 3 LIGOs are also 300watt hrs. ^ hrs is about what is used in the industry for expected peak hours a day with sunshine. Some panels do not meet their expectations. I use an intermediate storage battery and have my collector feeding it all the time. It is big enough to charge my bike battery 1 or two times which means it handles some shaded days with low collections. It also does my phones, my computer tablets and some other small. It would be a challenge to have the bike charge while riding. Maybe their bike had regenerative braking which is very minor charging. A solar panel on your bike that big would be very unwieldy while you ride. I have seen folks pull trailers with them installed. I do not know what percentage charge they got from that. I do think that you can carry on at least 5 of the LIGO batteries at a time. I also use the 2nd setting most of the time. I am usually pulling a small trailer. I need to figure out how to add solar to it and if it would extend my range much. I will print some pictures of my commuter Friday. A BF Oregon Traveler, with front hub motor I am testing, that I also ride when I travel using the TravelCase. Best in Cycling / Alan
Great good story and now you have channeled your inner salesman. Can’t wait to get an E-bike.
Pingback: Bike Friday Riding on Sunshine Part: 2 | Bike Friday
Great story on developing solar power for ebike travel. Did you consider purchasing a second battery for your ebike that could be plugged into the converter during sun light hours. That would eliminate the necessity to store electricity
Wonderful, practical article. Thanks, I have a Chevrolet Spark All Electric. ( I call it Sparky.) I wish someone would write a simple “how to” like yours so that I could run my Chevy spark with solar from panels (to be installed) on my garage roof. Thanks for the inspiration.
Eva Heyman and many others are remembered here , its so sad what happened and we never should never forget what monsters where in power during 40/45 in Europe. Just out of curiosity, How the founders of Bike friday found the diary of Eva and what is the conection between founders and this poor little jewish girl?
Kind regards R.Eliasar
We will never forget. We had a Bike Friday owner connect us with this story which we had to share, for the very reason that we should never forget so we can do our best not to repeat history like this again. Paul Moore named our company but it was from Robinson Crusoe, but curious if maybe he had heard this story as well? Something to look into. Our hearts go out to those who still suffer as this young girl did and hope that one day, we can all make this world a better place.
It’s very disappointing to find out the limit now is only 2 x battery modules that you can carry on an aircraft. It sounds like the appealing option of being able to travel with the e-bike is now not possible. It would be fantastic however if it were possible to rent the LiGo batteries whilst overseas. Is there such a thing? Could that be such a thing?
Hello there Carolyn. The limit isn’t actually two and often we have customers who are each bringing four batteries. Sorry for any misunderstanding as this is the only option in the world to easily fly with your Electric Bike. Happy to help answer any questions if you have them. firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for your reply Jarl. Under the FAA regulations this is what the ruling is:
(ii) For a lithium ion battery, the Watt-hour rating must not exceed 100 Wh. With the approval of the operator, portable electronic devices may contain lithium ion batteries exceeding 100 Wh, but not exceeding 160 Wh and no more than two individually protected lithium ion batteries each exceeding 100 Wh, but not exceeding 160 Wh, may be carried per person as spare batteries in carry-on baggage.
I’m not sure whether this is new information ?
How much weight is allowed on the tandem?
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