The first steps to folding wisdom


About this web site

What is a folding bicycle? What is Brompton?
Is a Brompton really suitable for...?
Brompton compared to other brands
Which model is meant for me?
Where can I find out more?

About this web site

What's it all about?

This site is about the world's most practical and fun vehicle. It gathers contributions to the Brompton-Talk Internet mailing list. It is named FAQ to attract your attention, not because it answers only frequently asked questions, but because fostering all quotations forecloses and quietens future anguishing queries for all err... quacks?

Most contributions were edited [like this], some spelling errors were corrected. Contributions before August 1997 bear no date tag.


Mail to stein.somers at host (replace by the @ sign) in Dutch, English, French, German, or even Spanish and Turkish if you're patient.


Nobody will care if you blindly rely on the information contained; the editor, Stein Somers, is not affiliated to the Brompton company or any other bicycle company in any other role than customer; some of the contributors are but that should be obvious in their interventions; you may freely copy these documents, provided you don't change them.

What is a folding bicycle? What is Brompton?

What is a folding bicycle?

The folding world first of all classifies bicycles as:

Why is it wonderful?

Because unlike "normal" bicycles, a folder can be:

Not convinced yet? With a folder, you can:

And why not?

Pro's & con's of small wheeled bicycles

Wheels cannot be folded, and you need two of them, so if you want a somewhat compact folder, it has to sail on small wheels. Admitted, the ordinary big bicycle wheel:

But, on the other hand:

Hub vs. derailleur gears

While we're comparing things, some trade-offs of hub (or bottom bracket) and derailleur gears, both in relation to the ultimately simple fixed sprocket:
Hub gears Derailleur gears
  • cannot easily change gears while slow or stopped (neither can thieves)
  • regular maintenance required (cleaning, lubrification)
  • exposed, fragile mechanical parts
  • hard to encapsulate the drivetrain
    (but that seems impossible on a folder anyway)
  • possible to tune gear ratio's by choosing chainrings and sprockets

What is a Brompton?

Brompton is an English brand of folders. They have a few models that are variations on a patented frame. It makes the most compact folded package on the market, yet a very roadworthy bicycle. Therefore it is considered the best folding bicycle (as opposed to folding bicycle).

Is a Brompton really suitable for...?

Can you really ride more than 10 miles on that thing?

It's frail, isn't it?

After someone at Bike Friday headquarters was alleged to have suggested this...

Yes but I'm really heavy...

[Post scriptum from the maintainer of this site: in 2001, my Brompton's frame turned out to be overstressed. I was blamed for causing the problem, but no clear causes were identified. After more than eight months and some arguments, it was replaced virtually for free. The frame lived some 5 years and travelled less than 5000km. I weighed "only" 85 kg. I use that Brompton only a few times a year anymore. ]

Frame material

Can tall people ride a Brompton?

Andy Cohen:
When I go shopping for a non-folding bicycle, I make sure to buy the right size for my body. I'm just tall enough (6' 2") to make it hard to find a used bicycle that fits me comfortably.
I'm thinking about buying a folding bicycle, but each of them seems to come in only one size. Are they somehow more adjustable than non-folding bicycles, or do taller and smaller people just put up with the lack of different bike sizes for the sake of the folding feature?

Honking up a hill

Can children ride a Bromptons?

Won't it fold while riding?

Carlos Cortes, Sep 1997:
[The back wheel assembly swinging underneath as easily as deploying a kick stand] sounds a little unstable. What happens if you go off a curve or over bumpy terrain? Doesn't it bang against its unfolded support?

Don't the brake and gear cables stretch and you need to readjust them every week?

Can you ride out of the saddle?

Is it slow?

Speeding on a Brompton

Carl J. Grillmair, Oct 1998:
I would prefer something capable of handling the 5 mile, 40-45 mph morning descents to my workplace. Would this be out of the question (or at least ludicrously dangerous) on the Brompton?

Touring on a Brompton?

All terrain Brompton?

Can you store a Brompton on a boat and not have it rust away?

Reasons not to buy a Brompton

As one might expect, most contributers on Brompton-Talk are using their Brompton, so they consider it at the very least useful. Really disappointed customers won't spend more time and money complaining on a mailing list that the manufacturer isn't even reading. Still here's a summary of problems that came up, in my personal order of importance:

Brompton service

I live in Belgium, close to the UK but for the bit of water in between. My Brompton has been in service three times. The first time it took four months to repair a broken rim (cause and lessons learnt: see Tips, tricks & tinkering - Rims worn out). According to the bike shop, most of the delay was due to Brompton shipping the part. The second time it took three months to replace a broken frame (some time after it crashed into a car). Same excuse. The third time it took nine months to replace a frame (alledgedly due to improper use by me).
On the other hand, service inside the UK is reported to be quite good:

Case Study by Andras Toth, March 1998

I have had my Brompton for more than 4 months now and have been subscribed to the mailing list since January. I find it is a good forum for discussing Brompton-related technical issues, but I personally lack the user aspect of it. I think it is best to admit right at the start that even changing the tyre on the back wheel of my bicycle is a considerable challenge to me, and I presume it must be the case for the silent majority of urban cyclists. However, this does not prevent me from doing everyday cycling and being committed to the propagation of alternative means of transport. It is my belief that Brompton is truly a revolution in the concept of the bicycle. In comparison to its importance, the ways in which it could modify our society's travelling behaviours does not get enough attention on this forum. That is why I have decided to make public a detailed description of my usage of Brompton. This case study was originally compiled for a friend interested in new means of personal transportation who did not know Brompton. It certainly repeats a lot of information that you already know. What I would like to do is to incite reactions on the way I am using my Brompton, especially in the second part of my study. I will publish it in two parts in order to reduce the amount of eventual responses flowing in at the same time. Here is the complete table of contents of my study.

0. Introduction
1. How I bought it
1.1. Previous direct experience
1.2. A concrete need
1.3. A favorable deal
2. The features of the Brompton
2.1. Unfolded mode
2.2. Folding / Unfolding
2.3. Folded mode
3. Using the Brompton
3.1. Cycling strategy
3.2. Parking strategy
3.3. Public response
4. Comparison of the advantages of the Brompton and a normal city bicycle
5. A glimpse into the future

0. Introduction

The following analysis will be based on the everyday use of a Brompton L3 bicycle (complete foldability, 3 gears, no initial light or carrier system) in Paris. That is, it takes into account the current position of foldable bicycles in society and on the market (their available features, their uniqueness, their price etc) . By no means is this an analysis of the potential role that these types of bicycles could play if they are ever manufactured in massive quantities and become wide-spread in a community.

1. How I bought it

I saw the first Brompton in my life at the Annual General Meeting of the European Cyclists' Federation in Vienna in 1994. This remained the only context where I kept meeting them in the following years, until I bought my own. I have never seen one in the street or heard or seen any kind of advertisement for it (in Brussels, Budapest, Paris). It seems the Brompton firm for some reason does not intend to break through with their models on the international market, they are satisfied with keeping the Brompton in the class of expensive elite bicycles accessible only to a relatively wealthy public. There were three factors that made me buy a Brompton on 9th November 1997: previous direct experience with it, a concrete problem that only a foldable bike could solve, and the favorable conditions of its purchase.
1.1. Previous direct experience
In 1995 I had the occasion to try a five speed model in Brussels, in a hilly urban context for a few hours. Without the extremely satisfactory results of this probe I would have never seriously considered buying one. It may be one of the drawbacks with expensive bicycles that people do not usually get to ride them on longer distances before they make the decision of buying them or not. The ultimate convincing power is real-life experience.
1.2. A concrete need
Even with this, the Brompton would have remained one of my numerous dreams in life if I had not moved to Paris in October 1997 on a nine-month scholarship. What pushed me into considering the purchase of a Brompton was a concrete objective need. I had sworn to myself that I would use a bicycle in Paris just as I do in Budapest and as I did in Brussels on another scholarship. However, it turned out that my accommodation was near one the southern gates of inner Paris and my university 5 kilometers north from the northern edge of the town, in Saint-Denis. On a normal bike I would have had to cover 30 kilometers every day, crossing the very center of Paris and going on highways in a sea of cars. The only way to achieve daily commuting by bicycle and also to shorten the one hour trip to 35-40 minutes was to take the bicycle in the suburban underground train (RER) that crossed the center of Paris. The only bicycle with which I could do this was the Brompton.
1.3. A favorable deal
A third factor, the proximity of Great Britain also played an important role. In France, the model I bought costs 4700 franks (approx. 780 USD). In Britain, 391 GBP (approx. 610 USD). A difference of about 1000 French franks! Fortunately, a friend living in London just happened to jump over to Paris and he was kind enough to buy the bike for me there and bring it with him. The knowledge that prices are so much lower in Britain might convince people that it is not worth buying a Brompton from the resellers in their country. On the other hand, getting a Brompton from Britain is not always as convenient as in my case.
What should be remembered from all this is that an average person is not likely to have any of my motivating factors to buy a foldable bicycle.

2. The features of the Brompton

2.1. Unfolded mode
There is little danger of being wrong if I say that unfolded, the Brompton works as any other city bicycle. The joints are solid and with the three-gear system I can move around as easily and quickly (even on slopes) as on a traditional bicycle. The lack of an original lighting system is rapidly compensated with removable back and front lights that I take off when I fold the bicycle. The main difference is in stability, due to the small diameter of the wheels, but I am not sure whether it is a drawback or an advantage. Although at first it was weird that the bicycle responded to the slightest move of my hands on the handlebars, I never feel unsecure, even when I am descending from a hill at full speed. On the other hand, the size of the wheels makes it much easier to navigate between cars trapped in a traffic jam or other obstacles that require intensive steering. What is clearly a disadvantage is the extreme sensibility of the bicycle to the unevenness of the road surface. It is virtually impossible to ride on a paved road, and even relatively smooth surfaces that you do not even notice on a normal bike are unpleasant for a Brompton user. However, occasional bumps are not a problem (even fun to take), because the bicycle has excellent suspension thanks to the rubber bumper at the meeting point of the rear wheel assembly and the rest of the bicycle. The other thing that I find uncomfortable is the way the rear wheel assembly flaps back when I lift the bicycle by the handlebar and the seat pillar. The manual says I should not bother about it, just let it hang and bump into everything, but I do find it a nuisance when I have to lift the unfolded bicycle on stairs. So what I do is that I grab the back by the rear wheel assembly instead of the seat pillar, which requires a little more bending and effort from me, but keeps the bicycle together. The positive aspect of this feature is that parking the Brompton by swinging the rear wheel assembly under the bicycle is even easier than parking a normal bike. I have not been to a longer trip with the Brompton yet, but I have the feeling I could easily do 50 kilometers on it at one go. One Sunday afternoon and evening I did about 30 kilometers, with several interruptions, but in very hilly areas of Paris. I felt tired sometimes during but not after the trip. In the last section, on my way home at 11.30 pm I even raced a little on the empty avenues, attaining a speed of 40-50 km/h.
2.2. Folding/Unfolding
The average time for these actions is 17-18 seconds in my practice, not counting the mounting and dismounting of the front light in the dark (the back light is constantly on the seat pillar just under the seat).
2.3. Folded mode
The Brompton is closest of all existing bicycles to the concept of portability, but it is not a portable bicycle. A little smaller and 5 kilogramms lighter, it would be one. But at 11 kilogramms and at the size of a small suitcase, it is only suited to be carried on small distances and in uncrowded public spaces. At 5 pm, I do not even attempt to take the subway with it, I know I would not be able to get on the train with something so big in my hands. In folded mode the bicycle can be pulled by the unfolded handlebar on its miniature plastic wheels. I rarely use this function, because it is useful only in very specific conditions: when the distance is too long to carry the bicycle in your hands but too short to unfold it, and you know that you would have to unfold and fold it several times. Also it is quite uncomfortable for someone of my height (178 centimeters) to drag it this way, I have to lift the front a bit and thus the bicycle easily looses its equilibrium. Not to mention that these mini wheels are even more sensitive to the unevenness of the ground, you can only use them on completely smooth surfaces. So most of the time I just grab the folded bicycle by its saddle and carry it as a suitcase. I switch hands every hundred meters approximately so that I avoid feeling tired in my arms too quickly. Unless the frame of the bicycle is dirty too, you will not get stained carrying the Brompton. What the brochure says is true: the chain is inside the folded frame and does not get in contact with you or other people standing beside you. The only extra piece that I would readily buy for my bicycle is the folding left pedal. In folded mode, this is the only part of the bicycle that sticks out from the otherwise compact assembly, and it bumps into everything when I carry it.

In reply to some negative comments received concerning the publication of my study on this list, just two remarks:

Having stated that, here is the second part of the study (chapter 3-5), dealing more specifically with my strategy to use the Brompton in Paris. I would really like to hear your comments about how *you* handle the situations described below. Consider my text as a series of questions rather than statements.

3. Using the Brompton

3.1. Cycling strategy
The main advantage of the ideal portable bicycle is that you can switch from cycling to another mode of transport at any point in your trip. Possible reasons include big traffic, bad weather, exhaustion or illness, distance, flat tyre. However, as every urban cyclist knows it, if the distance is inferior to five kilometers the most convenient means of transport remains the bicycle. So in approximately 50% of all my trips in Paris I use exclusively the bicycle in its unfolded mode (the city center is about 5 kilometers from my place). If I have the time or feel like doing it, I even cover larger distances. A Brompton owner must always start his or her day by making up the itinerary to be covered during the day and considering whether to take the bicycle or not. Rain is not a decisive factor unless the weather forecast predicted it for the entire day. You can always carry the Brompton on the way to work in the morning rain and ride on it on the way back in the evening sun. What determines the need for the Brompton is the proportion of the distance to be covered by foot and the distance feasible on your bike. It does not make much sense to carry the bike in your hand for a total of one hour if you only use it for five minutes on the way from home to the subway station in the morning and back in the evening. Some might think that these arguments are useless since you do not spend so much time carrying your bicycle. If you know there is a longer distance ahead, you just unfold it and ride! Unfortunately, this is true only in ideal circumstances. If you do not have to stop anywhere and there is a direct exit from the subway where you get off, you do not have to carry the bike very far. But as soon as you want to do some shopping, especially going from one shop to the other, or meet friends in the street and want to go along with them to cafés, bookshops etc., you are facing a dilemma: should I leave my bicycle unfolded and attached to a rack outside, or should I fold it and take it inside? Once I have it folded, should I unfold it until I get to the next shop? Usually you will end up carrying the bicycle with you, since the Brompton is too expensive to be left outside, and anyway, why did you buy a foldable bicycle if you have to lock it to racks? As for unfolding and folding it every time, fast as it may be, it is nonetheless annoying if done so frequently. So if during the day you plan to do area-limited activities with frequent movement like shopping you better leave your Brompton at home or in a safe place. In Paris, there is an additional factor that makes the combined use of public transport and of the Brompton difficult. The car-centered concept of urbanism that has been prevailing in this century sent the vast majority of public transport underground. The subway system in Paris is perhaps the most complex one in the world, with 13 subway lines and 4 underground suburban trains converging in numerous points in the area delimited by the peripheral highway. Châtelet-les-Halles in the city center is the biggest of all stations, three of the four suburban trains and the most important subway lines cross here in what we may safely call an underground city with a cultural and shopping center. In an area of approximately one square kilometer all subway stations are linked by underground pedestrian passages. If you get off your subway or train in this maze, it may well take 10 to 15 minutes and several hundred meters before you see the sky above your head. Needless to say, cycling and skating are forbidden in these passages, where you often have to first go down in order to reach the surface, taking stairs and escalators several times. And this is just one of the dozen of places in the Parisian subway system where converging subway lines create underground pedestrian labyrinths. To worsen the situation, the automatic checkpoints for tickets are built in a way that anybody carrying something larger than a handbag will find himself or herself in trouble. The passages between the machines are way too narrow, and sometimes you even have to cross several checkpoints when changing from one line to the other. Using the subway system when arriving in Paris with heavy luggage is a real nightmare. It is not much better having a Brompton in your hands. If a town is ever constrained to have recourse to the subway in order to facilitate surface traffic (which is already something not recommended by modern urban transport theories), at least they should make sure that from any point in the stations there is a direct and easy access to the surface. This is not only in the interest of travellers with luggage and Brompton users, but also to ensure the general conviviality of life in that town. The best way to deal with the situation in the current circumstances is to acquire a good knowledge of the main stations and spot the nearest and shortest exit to the surface, regardless of your destination. Once you are on your unfolded bike things are much easier.
3.2. Parking strategy
You do not park a Brompton the way you do it with normal bicycles. Ideally you always have it with you, since there are two good reasons that prevent you from leaving it somewhere outside attached to a bicycle rack. It is too valuable and it does not seem logical: having paid for a foldable bike, you would be crazy not to profitate from its special features. So in you go with it. However, depending on the place where you have entered, it is sometimes advisable to get rid of the bicycle inside. If you are in a cinema, concert hall, theater, or even a restaurant, it is very likely that there will be a cloakroom where they will be more than delighted to take care of a unique foldable bicycle, a colorful spot in the eternal flow of coats and bags. Chances are that even if there is no cloakroom, the employees of the establishment will help you find a safe place to put your Brompton. If you think the place is not safe enough, you can attach it to some tube or stable piece of furniture with the chain you always carry in your bag. The same thing can be done at your workplace. If you meet negative reactions, do not insist. Just walk out of sight and attach your bicycle in a discreet place in the building, or ultimately take it with you and put it by the wall near your seat so that you can keep an eye on it. This has happened to me only two or three times in one and a half months. However, things have never gone as far as being explicitly told to leave the bicycle in the street. In supermarkets, it is a good idea to put the Brompton in your handcart and push it around as if it was a child, provided you do not have to buy too many things. In cantines, you will quickly learn how to hold your tray with all the dishes in one hand and carry the Brompton in the other.
3.3. Public response
This is the most difficult thing a new Brompton user has to get used to. No matter in which position your bicycle is, folded, unfolded, or in-between, it will always sollicitate the curious eyes and the remarks of bypassers. In average I am stopped two times a day in the street or elsewhere by people asking questions and admiring the bicycle. The two most frequent remarks are 'It's practical, isn't?' and 'This is a folding bicycle!', as if I was unaware of it. In the long run it is rather irritating. Some people ask further questions, which concern mostly the weight and the price of the bicycle, where it is sold, and also how safe and efficient it is to ride on it. The conversation is usually interrupted when I say the price of the bicycle. It is really THE discourageing factor for everybody. As I have been involved in the work of different urban cyclist and environmental associations, I am sensible to the fact that people who see me use this bicycle automatically start thinking about transport issues in their town, so I consider it as a good pedagogical tool.
4. Comparison of the advantages of the Brompton and a normal city bicycle
Advantages of the Brompton
Advantages of a normal city bike (=disadvantages of the Brompton)

5. A glimpse into the future

I realize that some of the features described above are closely related to the premise that my Brompton is the only one around. If ever the novelty of the bicycle is gone and more and more people start to use it, we will have to rethink the whole issue again. I try to imagine what it would be like if everybody had a Brompton-like bicycle. So it is not such a big investment. The major part of the change is to happen in the portable bicycle manufacturers' attitude and in the habits of people.

Brompton compared to other brands

Mike Hessey, Oct 1999:
There are lots of comments on the Brompton and Birdy, and comparisons, on the Folding Society web pages at

Brompton compared to Bike Friday

Brompton compared to Birdy

Brompton compared to Bike Friday and Birdy

Brompton compared to Dahon

Brompton compared to Strida

Brompton compared to itself (in younger days)

Which model is meant for me?

C or L or T model

Since March 2000, there's a C model without mudguards, but noone has bought one and written about it on Brompton-Talk yet. The difference between L and T is:
L-model T-model
Physical no carrier rear carrier with bungees
single rear roller on a rather weak stay two rollers at either side of the sturdy carrier; they can be upgraded to in-line skatewheels ("transport set")
slightly obscured rear reflector tyre-side dynamo, rear light and reflector attached to the carrier
front light on bracket and double wiring towards it
Functional lighter can carry large packs (or even a light passenger), although parking at the same time is impossible
more stable while parked or folded
easier roll the folded package
usable but low quality lighting systems; since March 2000, high quality lighting

The main issue is the carrier. If you insist, you can add a carrier yourself (see Tips, tricks & tinkering - Adding a rear carrier to an L-model). Adding a front light and wiring yourself is easy, so they don't matter much.

How usefull is the carrier?

You can use it for Tips, tricks & tinkering - Stowing luggage on the rear carrier.

3 or 5 gears

3 speeds hubs win because they are: 5 speeds are better because they:

{Keith J Russell} [...] should we fork out the extra UKP 80 for the T5 or stick with the simpler, and perhaps more robust, T3? [...] We'll be using it for light commuting, trips to the shops, train journeys etc. Definitely won't be touring on it (yes - I kow some hardy folks do) but we'll stick with the tandem for that type of cycling. I can't imagine we'll cover more than ten miles at maximum.

Reduced gearing

In the comments below, take notice that since March 2000, 12% reduction became standard on 5 speed models.

{Clive Page, Apr 2000} Just in case anyone else is still as confused as I was about the gear options on the new Bromptons, I have here a leaflet from the Brompton Bicycle Ltd dated March 2000 which sets it out in terms I can understand (i.e. inches):
L3 & T3 47"63"84" 50 teeth x 13 teeth
L5 & T537"44"56"70"84"44 teeth x 13 teeth
C3 44"58"78" 46 teeth x 13 teeth
Options are:
3-speed models12% lower or 18% lower.
5-speed models14% higher or 7% lower.

Do I need a longer or telescopic seat post?

Where can I find out more?

Paper Magazines

These days, mainstream cycling magazines often feature folders. But these two stand out in the English speaking cycling world.

A to B

A to B magazine is a wonderful, neatly printed, bimonthly, 56 page, A5 magazine, covering a range of practical transport issues mostly overlooked elsewhere: folding and electric bicycle, trailers, railways, car-free life... When it comes to products (and it does often), it is rather focused on the Brittish market.
19 West Park
Castle Cary
Somerset BA7 7DB

Phone/Fax: +44 1963 351649
Several of the editors, including David Henshaw, are or were regular contributors on the Brompton-Talk mailing list.

Velo Vision

Velo Vision appears 4 times a year and covers the whole spectrum of practical human powered vehicles on large colourful pages, including articles on people. Compared to A to B, more international, less hands on, more inspired.

The Folding Society

Mike Hessey, Sep 1998:
The Folding Society is back! If you have an interest in folding and separable cycles, take a look at the web pages, which are at and please register your interest by completing the registration form you will find there.


The mailing list where all the stuff you read here comes from. Currently it is hosted by Yahoo Groups. Instructions on how to subscribe are also under

Brompton links

Folding bicycle links

General bicycle links

Brompton shops

These are references posted on Brompton-Talk or directly to me. Many risk to be outdated by now. I'm increasingly wearier of maintaining this list. It's much wiser to visit Brompton's list of distributors on their own website and contact your national distributor.

USA & world

The most active source (not only on the internet) is Channell Wasson, US & worldwide Brompton distributor, running the web-site and, for many years, the Brompton-Talk mailing list.
Channell Wasson
C.M. Wasson Co.
voice 650-321-0808
fax 650-321-8375




The Netherlands

Distributer for the Benelux is Simon Koorn, tel. 31 38 455 1580





Channell Wasson, Mar 1998:
Sending a Brompton to Australia from California is about $200US


Steven M. Scharf, Jan 1998:
Ever since I first saw a Brompton at the 1995 Taipei International Bicycle Show I wanted one. In January 1998 I was back in Taipei on business and decided to try to buy one.


Not everyone knows that Brompton licensed a Taiwanese company called Neobike to manufacture and sell the Brompton in Asia. The whole story is quite complex as the founder of Neobike was employed by another Taiwanese folding bicycle company who sent him to the U.K. to arrange the deal. The employee quit and started Neobike and made the deal with Brompton to manufacture the bike in Taiwan (this is the story I heard anyway).


At the time of the 1995 bike show, the Taiwanese made L3TS was retailing for about US$300. But due to the strong dollar the price has fallen in $US; I paid $235. The L3TS is kind of a cross between a L3 and a T3. It includes a rear rack but no lights. It also includes a zippered Brompton logo carry bag, the left folding pedal, and a frame pump.


I have heard reports that the Taiwan manufactured Bromptons are of lower quality than the English built units. This may be true. I am having trouble adjusting the rear fender to prevent it rubbing the rear wheel; it may be due to a lower quality rear brake set that prevents the fender from being high enough over the wheel. I have given up for now and removed the fender, but I think by some cutting of plastic under the brake set I can get it to work satisfactorily.

Neobike Office

The Neobike export office was a ten minute walk from my hotel but they were no help. They never returned e-mail or phone calls and when I went to the office no one was there that day.
Neobike Office: 112 Chung Shan Road N. Section 2, 3rd Floor, Room A = (turn left from hallway with the elevators, go to the end of the hall). Neobike has a desk in room A. Note that the entrance to the building's upper floors is around to the right down an alley from the main entrance of 112 which is a bank. Phone 2 5413253.

Taipei Retailer

Fortunately I had saved a list of Taipei bicycle shops handed out by the Brompton people at the bike show three years earlier. They had circled one shop that carried the Brompton (all in Chinese characters and with no phone number). I had my hotel look up the phone numnber of the shop. I called them (they spoke English fortunately) and they said that they did have a Brompton in stock. I went over there to check it out. They had only a sickly green one in stock but they told me they could get a red one by the next day, and they followed through with their promise.
I picked it up on Saturday morning and took it back to my hotel. They had the shipping box which was helpful for shipping it home on the plane (no charge).
Shop name: David Bicycle Company (also called 102 Bicycle Shop)
Manager: David Chen
Address: 102 Hsinyi (sometimes spelled Hsin I or Sin Yee) Road Section
Phone: 2 7066556 or 2 7000788
Directions: Exit the Ta-an MRT station, turn left (west) on Hsinyi Road Walk about 1/2 km to #102 on a corner. I think the cross street is Chien Kuo Road South but I am not sure.
Hours: Usually 10:30 am to 9:00 pm. Closed Tuesdays.
You should call first to ensure that they have what you want. Call a day or two in advance so they can get what you want, especially if you will be staying only a short time in Taipei.

If you're close to the Far East

The far east of the globe will be interested in Neobike International Co. Ltd. who make a cheaper and less complete Brompton under license for the Asian market.

Is there some advantage over getting direct from UK vs from Channell in California?

Mail order

Robert Evangelista:
Are there mail order houses in the UK that sell Bromptons with some of the extra equipment?

Richard Taylor:
You might try talking to
St John St Cycles,
(44) 1278 423632
91-93 St John Street
Bridgewater, TA6 5HX Somerset
I do not have a fax number for them (they do have one), but they are a pretty good mail order company
St Johns, by the way, do not discount Bromptons

Where can I find a second hand Brompton?

The longest list of second hand Brompton appears in A to B Magazine.

How do I inspect a second-hand Brompton?

Pierre-Philippe Coupard, Oct 2003:
On top of my hear, look for these:

Where to order custom parts for a Brompton

Here are Brompton-Talk contributers that run professional bike shops: