10 October 2014

Mini Velo

By a stroke of luck I happen to have on loan a small wheeled bike from Mr Pai. I had test-ridden it before, but now that I have ridden it a little more I think it deserves a post of its own.
The Mercier Mini Velo in bright Orange

The first thing I noticed when riding the bike was everyone else. Almost everyone I passed gave me a look, some did double takes. Although I suspect this is more because of the color of the bike. There is this nice sticker on the frame saying "this is not a childrens bike" which helps to answer questions as to why I've got a kids bike.

So this is full sized bike, meaning the seat, handlebar and cranks are more or less where they would be on a full sized road bike. The bottom bracket is a tad lower than on my mountainbike, and the wheelbase is nearly the same.

I was told to watch out for potholes, the small wheels are not exactly great at rolling over bumps. I have to be extra careful since I mostly ignore bumps on the mountainbike. That said, the bike is *very* twitchy. It acts funny especially when mashing on the pedals, or riding out of the saddle, or when climbing, or any combination of these.

As for the shifters, the less said the better. The friction shifters are actually on the head tube, because of the frame geometry I suppose. If I hit a bump while groping around for the shifter it'll be curtains. But i guess you can get used to it.

But the bigges advantage of the bike is its size and weight. Carrying it indoors is a breeze. Its a great commuter because you can always pick it up and walk when needed. Finally, it is really easy to toss on a bus when you want to do some light touring. A front rack / bag will make this a super touring machine. Note that its not a folding bike.

All in all, really fun bike - do try one whenever you have the chance.

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