Tern bicycles arrived on the folding bike scene in summer last year, looking to bring a little excitement, innovation and a fresh approach to the humble folding bike.
The folding bicycle first came about through military usage; the French army and others deployed folding bikes for bicycle infantry use around the 1890’s and they were later to be used extensively by British Paratroopers in WWII, developed specifically (by BSA) to allow the soliders to parachute from the aeroplanes with the bicycles folded due their compact size.
Fast forward to the present day, and Tern’s decidedly different approach to the humble, largely unchanged folding bike. The brainchild of the core creative heads previously behind the Dahon brand, Tern decided to work the problem of portable, stowable transportation from a fresh, logical angle…
“Bikes which fold, not folding bikes” underpins the design ethos behind the innovative new product. Great riding bicycle first and foremost. The fact they’re all able to fold – a practical, added bonus. After all, no matter how well a bike folds, if it doesn’t ride well in the first instance, no-one will want to ride it!
Tern represents a fresh look at transportation in an overcrowded, dense urban environment with spiraling costs. Rather than trying to maximise speed, Tern instead place emphasis on safety, comfort, convenience and portability. Needless to say, every Tern, regardless of wheel size, is highly portable, folding to integrate seamlessly with existing transport systems and crowded urban spaces. However, it’s the often sacrificed and overlooked riding characteristics of the folding bicycle upon which the Tern creative team have focused their attention.
Let’s have a closer look at the models which make up the exciting new range and some of the advanced technology and features they offer…
Link - £375.00 – £825.00srp
The Link range of bikes forms the backbone of the new Tern range – the ‘bread and butter’. Traditionally used smaller 20” sized wheels accelerate well for traffic light drag starts and offer nimble handling characteristics for carving through the urban jungle. The smaller wheels also mean the folded size is super-compact for those really tight on space – making it ideal for combining multiple transport modes.
Joe - £450.00 – £675.00srp
The Joe series of bicycles use a slightly larger 26” sized wheels (aka conventional mtb sized wheels), whereas the rest of the Tern range roll on the more commonly used 20”/24” wheels. The ideal choice for longer stints in the saddle or journeys that take in slighter rougher terrain (canal towpaths, etc) where efficiency and comfort feature high up on the list of requirements. The added benefits of the full-size 26” wheels include greater rolling momentum once up to speed and the ability to roll over obstacles/imperfections a little better than the smaller wheeled variants. Factor in you’re only ever 5 seconds from a complete, full-fold and you have what I believe is called a “win-win” situation!
Eclipse – £850.00srp
‘Big ride, small fold’! A nice ‘in between’ 24” wheel size provides the ideal combination of stability, speed and momentum and small and compact folded size. The Eclipse can easily morph into a stylish, about-town load carrier (luggage socket on the front and Biologie Portage rack mounts on the back) or all-weather daily commuter and gets on extremely well with trains and buses for those whose commute goes that little further!
Your bike should adapt to your body and riding style, not the other way around. That’s why we developed the Andros, an adjustable stem that not only adjusts for height, but also reach. So whether you want your bars high and far, or low and close, the Andros will adapt. A single quick release controls both the stem and handlebar so it takes only seconds to get the bars in the position you want. The Andros features a patented TwinStem design, making it extra stiff and strong.
- Taller, Stronger, Stiffer — Making the hinge taller and moving the pivoting surfaces outward from the center axis more than doubles overall strength and stiffness and it’s a difference you’ll feel from your very first ride. Every frame featuring the OCL Joint has been independently tested to exceed the EN safety standard by at least 50% (we stopped the machines after going past 50%).
- NorGlide Bearings — The patented design puts sliding bearings between the moving parts so the folding action is always smooth and friction-free.
- Interlocking Halves — Unfolded, the joint surfaces lock together to improve torsional stiffness.
- Large, smooth lever — Large rounded surfaces are easy on your hands and give good leverage for easy operation.
- AutoLok Technology — Close the lever and it automatically locks in place, for extra, easy security.
- Floating Point Technology — Patented technology allows the lever to fold flat and brace against the joint for protection in transit.
- Serviceable — Good things are made to last and that’s why the OCL Joint is designed to be fully dealer serviceable. We keep every part in stock and replacing the bearings can be done in five minutes.
- Precision-machined — A machining tolerance of only 50 microns ensures a tight fit and eliminates looseness and rattling.
- Stainless Steel Bolts — Cold-worked stainless hardware delivers the durability and reliability needed for daily riding.
Verge – £775.00 – £2300.00srp
Simply put bikes bred for 100% performance. No compromises! A bike for those that like to get from A to B… FAST! Extremely easy on the eye and even better to ride – proof that true speed isn’t just for full-size 700c wheels only. Enviable, performance –orientated components top of the no compromise spec. Only speed merchants need apply!
The Physis Handlepost is found on all Tern models with the exception of the Joe models. Flexy handleposts and noodly handling can often be the Achilles heel of many folding bicycle designs. The Physis handlepost solves this with a massively strong, precision machined design that virtually eliminates flex. Four new patented technologies go into the design. The proof, of course, is in the ride.
You know the feeling: you’re on a ride and you need to adjust something and discover that you’ve left your bike tool at home. BioLogic figured that if the most handy/commonly used tools could be stashed on the bike someplace, it would be one less thing to worry about. So they designed the T-Tool – a special bar end plug and hex key tool that fit right inside the handlebar grip – invisible but always there when you need it. The patented T-Tool features 4 mm, 5 mm, and 6 mm hex keys built into one handy unit with a long leverage design for the 5 mm and 6 mm tools.
An initial, visually striking range of 17 bikes with varying wheel size and spec and a focus on safety, comfort, convenience, and portability will be available exclusively through Evans Cycles from March 2012 ranging from clean looking singlespeeds to 20sp racy speed machines.