Riding on Air: the Verge X30h

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Today I took the Tern Verge X30h on a test ride. “Just don’t hurt yourself,” my roommate and co-worker, Peter, laughed, “that bike is FAST.” Then I thought he was joking. I don’t now.

The Verge X30 rides like the wind!

The Tern Verge X30h is one of the fastest folding bikes I have ever ridden. At just under 23 lbs the X30h feels like you’re riding air. Normally, when I come to a stop light, I jump forward off of the seat and rest my foot on the right pedal in anticipation of the green light, but, with the X30h, even the weight of my foot was enough to make the bike creep forward, as though the bike wanted to speed off right out from under me.

The Verge X30 has a light touch!

When I realized how responsive the bike is, my roommate’s playful warning began to take on a new light. The Tern Verge X30h is a serious piece of equipment, and should not be taken lightly. Because of the small ultra lightweight frame, the X30h is very sensitive to your every movement.

Can the Tern Verge X30h hack it with a road bike?

Most people think that, when it comes down to it, no folding bike can really compete with a high performance road-bike. But with the Tern Verge X30h it’s a bit of a different story. The combination of a light weight frame, low to the ground handlebars, and a 30 speed shifter, really makes the Verge X30h competitive with any other bike on the road.

As I was pedaling the Tern Verge X30h up the Central Park bike path nearing 87thth street I came shoulder to shoulder with a hardcore biker, decked out in professional gear, and riding hard. Thinking I would see what the X30h could do, I kicked it into a high gear and launched in front of my unknowing adversary with a satisfying burst of speed.

I managed to keep ahead of him for about 20 blocks before he overtook me on the downhill stretch that loops west around the top of Central Park, but I knew I never could have kept that pace going on another folding bike.

The Tern Verge X30 took my breath away!

I finished my ride breathless, half from excitement, and half because I’de been pedaling like a mad man trying to keep up with that road biker.  No question about it, the Tern Verge X30h is FAST.  Definitely, if you can, come by the shop and try out the Verge X30 or another amazing Tern folding bike for yourself!

Until next time

Jack

Folding bikes, Frames and Handlebars.

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Alright everyone it’s time to talk about frames and handlebars. No not those protective cases that we see in museums, or the Colonel Sanders mustaches that we all know and love, I’m talking about top tubes, seat posts, and hinges—Hydroformed 7005-AL with smooth TIG welding and DoubleTruss technology.

That last bit I copied off the info brochure for a Tern Verge X30h that I was test-riding. I have no idea what “DoubleTruss technology” is, but it had a nice ring to it and sounds as impressive as the Tern Verge X30h actually is.

A folding bike that looks like a road bike?

Unlike many folding bikes that I have ridden, the Tern Verge X30h’s frame and handlebars allow you to remain very low to the ground. In contrast to a bike like the Tern Link D8, which has Y shaped handle bars that rise almost to shoulder height, the Verge X30h is designed more like a traditional road bike, with low riding handlebars that curve forward and then down like a mountain goat’s horns.

These lower-riding handlebars allow you to bend your torso forward when you ride, minimizing wind resistance. This, coupled with a frame that only weighs 22.7 pounds, allows for a much faster ride!

Other fold-up bikes have T shaped handlebars

Where the Tern Link D8 sports the raised Y handlebars and the Tern Verge X30h goes the route of the mountain goat, other models, like the Dahon Mu P8 have flat T-shaped handlebars more in the style of a mountain bike.

While the true road biker might scoff at the T-shaped handlebars, I actually think they have a few advantages over the afore mentioned models.

Unlike the Y-handlebars, the T-bars remain relatively low to the ground so that, if you choose to, you can lower your body into the wind and decrease your resistance. On the Tern Link D8, I was forced to sit so upright that I always felt like I was battling the elements. On the Dahon Mu P8, when the wind gets rough I simply lower by body, grab that T-bar by its center and, whammo, I’m off.

Standing up on a Folding bike?

While the T-bars are low to the ground, they are still elevated enough that it doesn’t feel awkward to stand up when you need that little extra torque on a hill. Often, when I’m using a bike with handlebars that drop forward, I feel great when I’m sitting but always a little unsteady if I ever need to stand up. This could just be my lack of experience on road bikes, but hey, bikes should be designed to accommodate pros and amateurs alike!

Come by a folding bike shop sometime and test ride some bikes!  See which handle bars are the best fit for you!

-Jack