For those of you who are not on the Brompton Talk mailing list, the following message received today may be of considerable interest:
At the Tokyo Cycle Show from 5-7 Nov 98, There was a aluminium
brompton prototype on display. I was told that it weighs less than 9
kg and could be in production from April 99. Also, the new Taiwanese
brompton can carry the optional baggage system.
+ Kong Wai Ming + email:firstname.lastname@example.org
+ Tokyo Institute of Technology + add: 2-12-1 O-okayama,Meguro-ku
+ Department of Computer Science + Tokyo 152, Japan
+ Nakajima lab + tel: 813(5734)2183
+ + fax: 813(5734)2911
I'm not sure if this would be an official Brompton product, a machine produced by the Taiwanese company that manufactures a Brompton, or an unofficial clone. No doubt more information will emerge ...
And here is some more news: Brompton in the UK tell me that it is not one of theirs. It seems likely that this machine has been made by Neobike, who (officially) make a copy of the Brompton for sale in the Far East (sales are not allowed outside that area). We'll let you know if and when more news is available.
You'll have to wait until later today for this, as it's under an embargo at present! Wait for issue 8b of FS News.
Graham McDermott, of folding bike fame, has just purchased a new Brompton T5 with front bag and is delighted with it. "The Primo tyres have made all the difference to the bike", he says.
Graham has owned several Moultons, Birdys and Bike Fridays, so this is quite a new departure for him. The Birdys and Fridays (except the tandem) were sold when he got an AM GT recently, but he obviously couldn't live without a fully folding bike. The choice of the Brompton to complement the AM GT is interesting, but rather flies in the face of his aversion to hub gears! And why was this news embargoed - Graham is visiting David and Jane Henshaw, and wanted his new bike to be a surprise to them!
I'm happy to report that our Sales and Wants page on the web has at last got some entries on it, so take a look if you are interested in extending your stable. One of the machines for sale is Richard Taylor's Birdy Blue, and the reason given for selling is rather interesting - Richard comments that he finds a Brompton and Bike Friday suit his riding requirements better. Perhaps this fits in with Graham's current choice (though substituting in his case the AM GT for the Friday). When talking to Birdy owner (and ex-Friday owner) Paul Stobbs at Ventnor earlier this year, he suggested something similar, though to the best of my knowledge he still has the Birdy. I think on the whole I agree with this, though I'm not planning to dispose of my Birdy, and I do prefer the gearing on it to that of the Brompton; it's my bike of choice this week. As mentioned in the last issue of FS News, the Birdy still remains the preferred bike for some people though. An aluminium Brompton, if it is really going to happen, might put the cat among the pigeons. However, I have to admit however that I am one of those who are not keen on aluminium as a frame material.
If you want to put an item on the S&W list, just email me; there is no charge, but PLEASE let me know when it is sold, so that it can be removed from the list.
You may hear that some Folding Society members in the UK have received material in the last few days by snail mail, and wonder why nothing has been sent to you. The reason is simple - you will have received it all before by email, or have seen it on our web pages. The posting was sent only to those people who don't have email access. Incidentally, it's an odd fact that the response to the relaunch of the Folding Society has been almost entirely by email - there are only about 15 people who have responded so far by post. Do nearly 90% of folding enthusiasts have email, or is there some other explanation for this?
Saturday 14th November - Origami Phoenix Ride, visiting the National Motorcycle Museum. Contact John Pinkerton on 0121 350 0685 for more information, web pages http://www.whooper.demon.co.uk/origami
Sunday 15th November - London Ride, expected start 2.00pm at Peace Pagoda, Battersea Park. Contact Rob Cope for more information, email email@example.com.
The last week has been very busy from the work point of view, so riding, and preparing additional web pages, has taken a back seat. That's likely to be the case during at least the first part of this coming week too, so don't expect too many additions to the web pages at the moment. However, the topics mentioned in the last issue of FS News are still planned, and indeed some have been started already. The positive side of this, at least for me, is that the work brings in some much needed money - pity I've spent it already at Photo Action! You can find the web pages, with some additions and updates from this time last week, at http://www.whooper.demon.co.uk/foldsoc
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Last updated: 31 January 1999