The Folding Society

The Micro

A brief history of the Micro

The Micro was originally created by Peter Radnall, managing director of E A Radnall and Company Ltd, a Birmingham cycle component manufacturing company established in 1895. The bike was originally intended for his own personal transport needs. Subsequently Micro Cyckles Limited was founded in 1976 to produce and sell the bicycle, and two years later the machine won a Design Council Award for 'design excellence'. The bike had a quoted weight of 27 lb (12.3kg), and when folded would fit into a space 27" x 18" x 11" (69 x 46 x 28cm). It had an exceptionally short wheelbase of 31" (79cm).

In 1981 Radnall, who was pulling out of manufacture in order to concentrate on design, licensed production to another cycle component company, T D Cross & Sons Ltd, but they went out of business the following year, and production ceased [there is a company now operating on the same site, called T.D. Cross Ltd, which is a thriving power transmission manufacturing company]. It is understood that some 5000 Micros had been made over the 6 year period.

The Micro was briefly reintroduced in 1988 by Falcon Cycles, but they went bankrupt soon afterwards, and at the time had only produced a few sample machines.

In 1995 the Micro was reintroducced by Richard Cresswell of Cresswell Cycles. As the original tooling no longer existed, some design changes were incorporated at this time, notably an increase in the wheelbase and a modification to the handlebar stem. These resulted in a reduction in weight (quoted as 24 lb, 10.9kg), but an increase in the size of the folded bike to 30" x 20" x 15" (76 x 51 x 38cm)

Cresswell was taken over by Pashley Cycles in December 1997, and manufacture of the Micro was moved to the Pashley factory in Stratford on Avon. Although there was some rationalisation of the Cresswell range, the Micro remains in production, but is sold under Pashley's 'Brilliant Bicycles' name (as is the ex-Cresswell FoldIt).

The Micro has thus been around for quite a time, and has had quite a varied career, although it is not the only folder design to have passed through many hands.

The information provided above is extracted from It's in the bag! by Tony Hadland and John Pinkerton. Copies of this very interesting and informative book are available from Mrs D Pinkerton, 522 Holly Lane, Erdington, Birmingham B24 6LY, at a price of £9.45, including post and packing in the UK.

This section of the web site is still under construction - please come back soon. We expect to include comparisons of the currrent Micro and earlier models, and have more historical information and hints and tips on the use and maintenance of Micros.

If you have any information suitable for inclusion on these pages, please contact us.

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Copyright (C)2001 Ferrets Anonymous
Last updated: 10 November 2001