Posts Tagged ‘schwalbe big apple’

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Dahon – Running Well

Sunday June 21, 2009

A pleasant ride around town this morning, not far, not fast, just having a look around.  Thought I’d take a look around the Farmers’ Market whist I was out.  It was a bit disappointing – not many stalls and nothing really impressive or interesting enough to make me stop and take a closer look.  Shame.

The tide was in so the river was looking good as the Medway rowing crews whizzed past causing barely a ripple on the surface.  The Castle grounds were fairly empty and quiet as I sat and watch people walk, play and relax.  It was good to be out.

The Dahon rode very well.  Having tightened up a few bits and pieces, including the bottom bracket, and with the addition of the Big Apples, it really is running well.  The Big Apples have made a huge improvement to the ride and I’m glad that I spent the cash on the upgrade.  I was cycling along with a smile on my face, enjoying the bike and thinking: “Now this is a great bike”.

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Big Apples Tested – They’re Greeeaat!

Tuesday May 26, 2009

Had to get out and test the new Schwalbe Big Apple tyres tonight, I was eager to see if they lived up to the hype.

It was almost 9pm and the sun was just setting so I kitted the Dahon out with my Cateye lights and the Frogs and hit the road.  Surfaces cycled in the test included: tarmac/road, grass, shingle and Rochester’s cobble/block streets.  The BAs definitely DO improve the comfort of the D7HG and also the general handling.  The wider profile tyres give it a more ‘normal’ feel – the Kwest tyres were just a little too thin (especially as I’m 6 foot tall and ## stone!)  😉

So, according to me (!), the Big Apples improve the looks of the bike AND the ride and handling.

Definitely a recommended upgrade!

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Schwalbe Big Apple Tyres – Dahon D7HG

Sunday May 24, 2009

As posted yesterday, I collected my Big Apples from the Post Office and my plan was to fit them this weekend.  The plan has been successfully completed and the Schwalbe Big Apples are now fitted to the Dahon D7HG.

I purchased the tyres from online store Dotbike and they arrived ‘next day’ – although I was out so the Post Office held on to them until the weekend when I could get over to collect them.  It was the first time I’d used Dotbike and it was a smooth and speedy transaction so I’ll be using them again in the future.

Schwalbe Big Apple - BIG AppleThe Big Apples (BA) are known as ‘balloon tyres’ which offer a softer, smoother ride and effectively absorb more of the road imperfections.

The BAs are replacing the factory-fitted Kenda Kwest tyres on my D7HG.  Compared to the now fitted BAs, the Kwests look very narrow – the Kwests are 20 x 1.5″ and the BAs are 20 x 2.0″.  The BAs are far chunkier and really to enhance the look of the D7HG making the wheels look far more substantial.  Based on looks alone, the BAs are definitely worth the cash!

Like the Kwests, the BAs have a 3M reflective strip on the sidewall which makes you stand out at night.  The BAs also have ‘Kevlar Guard’ which is designed to provide additional puncture resistance.

Fitting the tyres was relatively easy.  The front wheel was the easiest to remove: unhook the brake cable, loosen the two axle nuts (with my new spanner) and pull the wheel off.  Then, using the Crankbrothers Speedlever, I removed the Kwest tyre.  After a quick visual check of the existing rim tape, I pushed the BA tyre onto the rim followed by the new Schwalbe inner tube.  Before pushing the tyre completely onto the rim, I pumped the tube up slightly to enable it to gain its shape – this was to minimise the risk of nipping the tube as I pushed the tyre on.  I didn’t use any tools to fit the new tyre, resorting to thumbs and fingers so as to not damage the new inner tube.  Once fitted I inflated to 60PSI and refitted the wheel to the bike.

The removal of the rear wheel was going to be a little more complex and it was to be the first time I’d removed a wheel with a hub gear system. With this in mind I checked out the Dahon forum and other sites and collated the following information:

Schwalbe Big Apple - Fitted on the DahonAll proved to be useful.  One thing that I noted was that I didn’t remove the chain from the pedal cog prior to trying to remove the wheel – if I had done, after loosening the axle bolts, then I’m sure that I would have removed the wheel quicker and ended up with less oil and grease on my hands.

Having refitted both wheels, minor adjustments were required to prevent the new, fatter, tyres from rubbing on the Dahon’s mudguards.  The front adjustments involved a couple of screws and the rear mudguard was adjusted with a little bending and brute force.

After all that it was time for a quick ride around outside to check that all was in order.  They definitely do make the ride more comfortable and they do change the handling of the bike, in a positive way.  I didn’t ride far so I haven’t really tested the tyres, that will be (hopefully) tomorrow’s task.

So, tyres fitted.  They look great and really do improve the look of the bike.

More photos on my Flickr account.

Schwalbe Big Apple - Fitted

Dahon D7HG and Schwalbe Big Apples

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