Bike Friday 2001 Metro 7 Older Folding Bike


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[Dec 21, 2002]
Paul Patterson
Recreational Rider


Simple design, capable of loaded touring, uses off the shelf parts. snappy handling in traffic is a plus. 20 inch wheels are tough.


Rear hub needs upgrading.

At first, I was skeptical about buying a folding bike, much less one with 20 inch wheels. But since I travel a lot, I needed something that was transportable and very reliable. The bike Friday meets or exceeds my requirements. I know because I got the chance to try other folding bicycles. I’ve now had the bike six months and feel comfortable enough to write a good review. So here it goes… Good points… 1. Snappy handling (due to 20 inch wheels) 2. Tough as nails 3. Easily transportable 4. Rides as good as a higher-end hybrid of any make. 5. Wide gearing range, despite lack of front de-railluer and small chain ring. 6. No front de-railluer means easy maintenance /simple design. 7. You turn heads no matter where you go on it. 8. Can accept front and rear racks for loaded touring. 9. Uses off the shelf parts, which makes on-the-road serviceability possible. 10. Has a kick-stand as standard. Bad points… 1. Weak rear hub, worst problem I’ve had (pay for an upgrade, it’s worth it…I did eventually) 2. Water bottle cages in bad locations (why not install one on the steer-tube) 3. Brakes are good enough, but could use an upgrade. 4. Rear fender does not go far enough down and forward to provide adequate protection. 5. Replace the seat, the original one sucks. Recommendations… 1. Use a seat-post rear rack. It’s easier to pack in the suitcase. 2. Purchase a set of bar ends that can be removed / installed easily. 3. After you get the bike set up properly, use a punch to make some “line-up” markings. This will make set-up easier after unpacking. 4. Buy a 4 5 and 6mm “Y” wrench and a bondus 4mm, it’ll make assembly a snap. Then get a multi-tool for on the bike carry. 5. For a pump, go with Topeak’s morph series. You will be inflating / deflating the tires a lot, might as well have a good pump on hand. 6. Practice packing and unpacking the bicycle a few times before you take a trip. 7. Get the fenders. Despite my above comment about the rear fender, they really help. 8. Personally, I think the 1.9 wide wheels are overkill. But this is a personal preference. 9. This bike uses LOOOONG cable housings. Lots of drag here, so keep them lubed well. Especially after a rain shower. Watch for kinking during packing

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