This is my Brompton‘s State of the Bike Address 2012.
My Brompton turned two last Labor Day! I can still remember riding the bus from KL on the way to Singapore to finally pick it up from the bike shop.
It’s been pretty active since.
For mods… well, not much. It’s been pretty vain but not that vain — changes applied have mostly been for function. The first was changing the stock roller wheels to larger inline skate ones. It’s gone through three saddle changes: from the original Brompton saddle to the Brooks Flyer Special, then eventually to a Flyer Special S, then into a B17 Special. Handlebars have been changed from M-type to flat ones, while the stem remained the same. Foam grips have been replaced with Ergon GX2′s and eventually Ergon BioKork GP3′s. Brake levers were upgraded to Shimano R770′s. Eventually added a Connex link to the chain, and swapped out the rubber suspension from Standard to Firm. Final change would be removing the bent and skewed pedals and changing them to MKS quick release Lambda’s.
I think the Brompton’s been more vain in terms of accessories. It’s got three B specific bags: the basket (which I eventually gave to someone else), an S-bag I got as a birthday gift a year ago, and the really practical Ortlieb Mini-O. For luggage, it’s been packed in an Ikea Dimpa bag and both versions of the bike specific Vincita B132 bag. Let’s not forget all the stickers, lights, and other bike hooha too.
Since 2010, I’ve gotten into three accidents with the Brommie. Thankfully none of them were anything major. But a cut is a cut, and I have a very low tolerance for pain and blood. Hahaha!
In late 2010, I wiped out on a Mandai PCN because it was wet and there was moss on the pavement.
Mid-2011, I went out to go and change my handlebars when a kid cycling by slipped on a manhole cover and accidentally hit me with his flailing hands. We both went down bad, but his was much much worse because a part of my pedals scooped his leg skin out.
The last one, and perhaps the most annoying, was the time I was cycling by in ECP when a girl suddenly U-turned without any hand signals. My wheel was caught up between her spokes and the rotational turn of her bike made me fall to the right. And this happened on the day I just happened to go and test my GoPro — at least it was caught on camera!
In order to learn more about Brompton specific maintenance, I went on a class taught by the local retailer, Diginexx. I know how to remove the rear wheel now, but so far, I haven’t gotten any flats on the Brompton yet! (Touch wood.)
I rarely do maintenance on the Brommie, but it gets a thorough checkup annually! This years clinic time showed extreme cable housing rub — part of the housing already showed through, and some paint on the frame were rubbed through because of the cables. Steven from Diginexx changed out the rusty cables, the housing and touched up paint on my bike. Then for even more pimpage points, I sent it over to Hardy the Bike Spa guy for extreme cleaning.