Home > Project Cars > Other Projects > Dahon Classic III EP 203 Folding Bike Part 2: New Tires, Inner Tubes and a Bike Spa

Dahon Classic III EP 203 Folding Bike Part 2: New Tires, Inner Tubes and a Bike Spa

In our previous report, we set to work on a Dahon Classic III EP203 folding bicycle that was given to us for FREE by Jericho Jamasali, the brother of our marketing boss, Shawie Dizon. The folding bike was bought used at a garage sale in 2019 for P6,500 for Jericho to ride when he commutes from his condo in Mandaluyong City to his job in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig and back. After a while, the 20-year-old-something Dahon became a bit troublesome with the tires going flat on a regular basis, so Jericho bought a brand-new folding mountain bike and gave his old bike to us.

When we got the folding bike, it was dirty and bore some mud from Jericho’s last ride. (He narrated that he had to ride through some roads near construction sites where the mud was oozing onto the streets.) We delayed work on the bike until our order of a pair of brand-new bicycle tires and inner tubes were delivered. When our order arrived on the last day of 2020, we decided that the best course of action is for us to disassemble the bicycle first so we can wash and clean it more thoroughly.

Cleanliness is Next to…

After we got the Dahon disassembled, we took the frame and washed the grime off it with a lot of soap and water. Needless to say, we got dirty getting the dirt off the bike. The hardened mud needed some muscle to come off but once the caked grime was sprayed with water, it eventually loosened. As the bike became cleaner, we were pleasantly surprised to find that the metallic crimson paint was still glossy despite of its age and some small scratches.

Washing the frame of our folding bike took us back to our childhood when we can still bend easily.

After we hosed off the soap, wiped the water off, and dried the frame, we took a “Before and After” shot of the bottom of the frame to show our handiwork.

We also washed the wheels before we removed the old tires and inner tubes.

Changing the Tires

We took delivery of the Philippine-made Leo 16 x 1.75 inner tubes a full week before the Indonesian-made Swallow Super Trac gum-wall tires arrived. We excitedly took the old tires and inner tubes from the folding bikes stainless steel spoke wheels, cleaned the rims to a nice sheen, and placed a layer of tape to protect the inner tube from any sharp contact with the spoke nuts. Anyhow, we think the following photos speak for themselves:

We took a photo of our folding bike’s wheels with the still-wrapped Swallow gum-wall 16 x 1.75 tires from Indonesia and the new Leo inner tubes.

Using a pair of screw flat drivers, we started dislodging the old tire from the front wheel.

Once the tire lip was off the rim, it was quite easy to pull the tire off the wheel by hand.

We gave the rim, spokes and center hub of the wheel a good cleaning…

… before we mounted the brand-new Swallow gum-wall tire and Leo inner tube.

We inserted the inner tube into the tire before we carefully mounted these to the rim…

… pumped air into it…

… and kept the tire pressure between 35 to 50 PSI as recommended by the tire manufacturer.

Our front wheel now looks good!

After mounting the new tire and inner tube to the front wheel, we did the same thing to the rear wheel. We took care in removing the old Leo 16 x 1.75 tire and inner tube because these were still serviceable and can still be used by someone who needs just one 16-inch tire for his bicycle. Anyhow, we also cleaned and lubricated the Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hub gear, which was polished to a very bright shine. We also temporarily removed the spoke-mounted reflectors to clean all the spokes.

We carefully removed the still-useful Leo 16 x 1.75 tire and inner tube…

… and mounted the new Swallow Super Trac gum-wall tire.

The Sturmey-Archer 3-speed gear hub cleaned up quite well.

Deliberately Careful Reassembly

We took our time reassembling the Dahon because we felt that we should NOT reinstall parts that are broken (like the front and rear fenders/mud guards) or those that need to be replaced. But since our folding bike is more than 20-years-old, we kept some broken parts attached to it until we can locate a suitable replacement part. We would like to have everything chromed and polished but because of budget considerations and the pandemic situation, we just kept our reassembly procedures as close to stock as possible.

We are pleased that the “landing gear” of our Dahon is complete, intact and works as it should.

Our completed wheels are ready to be reinstalled on the clean frame.

We started reassembly by reinstalling the front wheel first…

… followed by reinstalling the front brake shoes,…

… then the rear wheel was reinstalled…

… followed by the rear brake shoes.

The rear reassembly turned out clean and nice.

Mounting Other Parts and Accessories

After the front and rear wheels were securely bolted on, we moved our attention to working on other parts, such as adjusting the cable for Sturmey-Archer 3-speed hub gear, reinstalling the folding side stand, chain guard, and rear carrier rack.

We bolted on the folding side stand…

… reattached and adjusted the tension of the cable for the hub gear shifter…

… reinstalled the black plastic chain guard…

… bolted the rear carrier rack back into place…

… inserted the lower half of the seat post into the frame…

… and reinstalled and tightened the quick-release seat lock.

Broken Pieces and Finished Assembly

We made a list of the broken parts that we need to find and purchase to return this Dahon Classic III folding bike back to its former glory. In the mean time, we made do with what we have and stopped to admire our handiwork. Not bad for a half-day’s work before the year ends, eh?

We need to find a new plastic left pedal because the one in our bike has a side that sheared off along with a missing amber reflector.

The sheared-off quick-release lock for the front head stem needs to be replaced…

… as well as the broken and corroded chrome bell.

Our finished bike, minus the broken front and rear fender/mud guards, looks better now…

… from the left or right side…

… or even when it is folded. We need to lubricate the chain, though.

It fits perfectly in the front trunk of our 1974 VW Super Beetle 1303 S. It’s ready for more adventures on the road!

 

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