What’s it like owning a Brompton folding bicycle?

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brompton

So what’s it like to own a Brompton? I had forgotten how great it was to own a Brompton, actually.  I am so used to mine, which I have had for 13 years, that if feels like a part of me and I guess I took it for granted – until it was in being repaired (more about that later) and I had to manage with a ‘normal’ bike for a couple of weeks.  The thing about a ‘normal’ bike is that you end up not using it as much.   Here’s why:

  • I couldn’t just sling it in the car and take it into town with me, then use it to get around instead of driving from place to place
  • I couldn’t take it to town and leave it in the boot of the car when I wasn’t using it
  • I Couldn’t just go to a CTC cycle run on impulse without having to assemble/fight with the bike carrier
  • I couldn’t take my bike on the bus
  • I wasn’t guaranteed to get it on the train because Scotrail limit the number of bikes (not Bromptons though, they just go on the luggage rack)
  • I couldn’t take it with me everywhere, anywhere and not worry about it getting nicked outside shops and cafes – I just take the Brompton in with me and stick it in a corner folded up.
  • I couldn’t keep it in the hall and just lift it as I went out of the front door.
  • And er… I seem to fall off ‘normal’ bikes but it’s almost impossible to fall off a Brompton.

brompton-folded

I have been on CTC main runs, on a week’s touring and camping holiday and anything else that folks do on a ‘regular’ bike.  And of course I am at present cycling 850 round Scotland on it for my Knit 1 Bike 1 cycle journey and book which will also be published by Lowimpact once it is written.  See  www.createwithfibre.blogspot.com  for details.

And here’s the story about my bike being away being repaired.  A couple of years ago I was sitting having a picnic in a park in Edinburgh.  In true Brompton style I had driven to Edinburgh and taken my bike for getting around the city once I arrived.  Having folded the rear end of the bike under so that it ‘stood’ on it’s own, (see picture) I noticed that part of the frame had rusted through.  I contacted Brompton and they took the bike back and fixed it.  Not only that, they gave it an overhaul at the same time.  So not has the original cost paid for itself many times over, I now have a 13 year old bike that is as good as new and well up to the job of cycling round Scotland.  That’s what it’s like to own a Brompton!

book-signing

And here is a picture of my Brompton at the recent Edinburgh Yarn Festival where I did a book signing, with my LILI book How to Spin in the background…

brompton-with-pipers

and another of my Brompton on the road on Robert Burns Birthday (Scottish Poet for those who are not in Scotland!) see how the back end folds under now?

Anyone got any other experiences of owning a Brompton.