Whether you own a leisure cruiser to navigate the inland waterways or an ocean-going yacht, the folding bike has become the must-have accessory for onshore exploration for all boat owners.
So many brands available, from folding ladies bikes to 16″ wheel micro-ebikes, the folding bike is enjoying somewhat of a renaissance amongst the floating adventure community.
Why Every Boat Owner Needs A Folding Bike – Benefits Of Owning A Folding Bike
Irrespective of the size of your vessel, stowing a bicycle on board when moving from place to place can deter many people from getting a bike in the first place. However, the ability to fold your bicycle to a fraction of the original size when not in use frees up deck space and makes discreet stowage a possibility. So with that problem solved, the only decision is left is to choose the right folding bike for your adventures!
Why Every Boat Owner Needs A Folding Bike – Which Is The Right Folding Bike For You?
Ultimately, selecting the correct folding bicycle depends on where you plan on riding it. For those who fancy getting away from the towpath and hitting the trails, there is a wide variety of folding mountain bikes available. Options include hardtail frames (front suspension only) and full suspension frame versions (with front suspension forks and a host link rear fork suspension) too. However, if you prefer to saunter around the towns and villages you may visit on your travels, then why not consider a folding micro-bike? The small 16″ wheels and tiny folding frame make light work of smooth pavements and pedestrian areas, and there are also electrically powered versions available too – flattening uphill sections by adding motorised assistance when the going gets tough. Despite the folding frame, modern foldable bicycles have well-engineered hinge clips, meaning that owning a fold-up bike doesn’t mean compromising on stability or handling.
If you are a seasonal boat user, then you may not want to spend too much on a folding bicycle that is only going to get used for a few weeks or months each year. Therefore, striking the right balance between build quality and value for money is essential to choosing your folding bike. Some of the traditionally renowned folding bike brands, such as Brompton, start from around £800 for a non-electric version. However, there are many alternative manufacturers on the market too, offering similar build and ride quality as the premium marques. The most popular folding bike brand amongst boat owners seems to be another UK brand, Ecosmo. The excellent finish and ride quality of Ecosmo’s lightweight folding bikes is no different, yet their comparable models are available for less than half the price of the brands with prices at the top end of the market. The same can be said for Ecosmo’s electrically assisted models too – featuring the same brake, motor and battery components, the electric models start from as little as £750, which is less than the non-electric premium counterparts.
If you are exploring with a partner, there’s also the option of a folding tandem bike. So whether you want to tour the villages and pubs near your canal mooring, or saunter around quaint harbour cafes, a contemporary folding bicycle could give you the freedom you need, without having to compromise on storage when sailing between ports.