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  • Jan 15 2020

    Winter Sale is NOW!

    The Great Perennial Cycle Winter Sale is on now!
    You still get our always awesome free shipping at $99+ on most all orders AND every item in the store is sale priced.
    All bikes are 10% off
    All other items are 15% off

    Here are some quick links:
    - ALL Brompton Folding Bikes (very rarely discounted)
    - ALL Thousand Helmets (a beloved shop favorite!)
    - ALL Things DYNAMO (we are the largest source for dynamo)
    - Bags and Panniers (massive selection of Arkel, Carradice, Banjo Bros, Ortlieb & more)

    OMG! ALL Brooks Bags, Saddles, Tools & more are now 15% off PLUS 50%

    Looking for extra bonus? All Brooks items in the shop are currently on sale for 50% off. So while the Winter Sale is on, the Brooks is marked 15% off. Using the promo code brooks50 still gets you 50% off, but now it's 50% off the already marked down price!
    Click for BROOKS

  • Jan 09 2020

    Brompton Tire Guide

    Looking for some new rubber for your Brompton? We have been riding and selling Brompton Bikes for over 10 years. Finding the right balance between durability, ride quality and efficiency will depend on where you ride, how you ride and what your expectations are.

    • We find the Schwalbe Marathon to be a shop favorite (not just for Bromptons, but overall) because it has mega durability yet the Marathon is quite speedy. The downside is that it is a fairly stiff tire, so the ride isn't quite as smooth as some other options.

    • If you want to be protected from flats as best possible, the Marathon Plus is the way to go. In Minneapolis it might be considered overkill, but if you're in a cactus state it might be necessary. This is the highest mileage and best flat protection offered from an air filled tire.

    • The Marathon Racer is Brompton's default stock tire. The Racer is a nice compromise between durability, smooth ride and speed. You're not going to get the same mileage as the Marathon and the flat protection isn't quite as high, but you gain a more supple tire which translates to a smoother, speedier ride.

    • If you like kicking it old school and want the narrowest and highest pressure tire, then the Kojak is for you. This has been the go-to for Brompton racers since the day it was introduced. While the folding and the non-folding Kojak look identical, the folding Kojak is lighter and more supple (higher sidewall chord count).

    • The Schwalbe One is the newest performance minded tire in the lineup. We LOVE it. Fast, lightweight, supple, durable and even a bit chubby. The only downside is the price, but hey, we don't need to replace our Brompton tires very often, so it is money well spent.

    • While the Marathon Winter is only going to appeal to those riding on rather extreme conditions (like those of us in Minnesota), it is a great tire for icey conditions. The Fin's made this tire possible and Minnesotans thank them ; )

    Schwalbe Marathon HS 420

    SIZE: 16 x 1.35"

    ETRTO: 35-349

    PRESSURE: 65-110 psi

    WEIGHT: 420g

    BEAD: Wire

    COLOR: Black

    COMPOUND: Endurance

    If we had one tire to recommend for the utility rider or daily commuter, the Schwalbe Marathon HS 420 is it. It is a little slower rolling than others on this list (except the Marathon Plus), but in exchange it will reliably shrug off glass, wire and other debris. We find this this is a dependable tire that will provide favorable riding characteristics.

    Schwalbe Marathon Plus HS 440

    SIZE: 16 x 1.35"

    ETRTO: 35-349

    PRESSURE: 65-110 psi

    WEIGHT: 480g

    BEAD: Wire

    COLOR: Black

    COMPOUND: SmartGuard

    The Schwalbe Marathon Plus HS 440 is Schwalbe's best selling tire and is also the most puncture resistant tire available for Brompton Bikes. It is an extremely durable, long-wearing and flat resistant tire. This is the highest mileage and most flat resistant tire available for Bromptons.

    Schwalbe Marathon Racer HS 429

    SIZE: 16 x 1-1/3"

    ETRTO: 35-349

    PRESSURE: 65-110 psi

    WEIGHT: 282g

    BEAD: Wire

    COLOR: Black

    COMPOUND: SpeedGrip

    The Schwalbe Marathon Racer HS 429 is the best-of-all-worlds option for your Brompton, and is the standard tire option on their bikes since 2017. We find that the Schwalbe Marathon Racer provides excellent city / commuting performance, while still being reliable and rugged enough for everyday use.

    Schwalbe Winter HS 396

    SIZE: 16 x 1.20"

    ETRTO: 30-349

    PRESSURE: 65-115 psi

    WEIGHT: 460g

    BEAD: Wire

    COLOR: Black

    COMPOUND: Winter

    The Schwalbe Winter HS 396 is the best way to winterize your Brompton. This tire provides outstanding grip on ice, and the winter compound provides reliable stability in winter conditions. We also like the added puncture protection and reflective sidewalls.

    Schwalbe Kojak HS 385

    SIZE: 16 x 1-1/4"

    ETRTO: 32-349

    PRESSURE: 70-115 psi

    WEIGHT: 230g

    BEAD: Wire

    COLOR: Black

    COMPOUND: SpeedGrip; 50TPI

    The Schwalbe Kojak HS 385 is a high performance Street Slick, well suited for use on the road. We find that the Kojak is ideal for city / urban performance riding due to its high on-road grip, low rolling resistance, and puncture protection. Reflective labeling is just the icing on the cake.

    Schwalbe Folding Kojak HS 385

    SIZE: 16 x 1-1/4"

    ETRTO: 32-349

    PRESSURE: 70-115 psi

    WEIGHT: 175g

    BEAD: Kevlar

    COLOR: Black; RFX

    COMPOUND: SpeedGrip; 67TPI

    The Schwalbe Folding Kojak HS 385 has similarities to the non-folding Kojak, but it's lighter weight, has a kevlar (folding) bead, higher threads per inch, and a full reflective strip. The higher thread count makes for a lighter and more supple casing. Additionally, the compact fold makes this a great option if you need to pack an extra tire.

    Schwalbe ONE HS462A

    SIZE: 16 x 1-1/3"

    ETRTO: 35-349

    PRESSURE: 65-100 psi

    WEIGHT: 180g

    BEAD: Folding

    COLOR: Black w/ Tan Walls

    COMPOUND: Addix Race

    The Schwalbe One HS462A is the fastest and lightest Schwalbe tire available for the Brompton. Here at Perennial Cycle, we prefer the slightly wider Schwalbe One VS. the Kojak, as we find the the ONE gives a slightly smoother ride and gives a bit more durability. If you are looking for the speediest tire option, this might be 'the one'.

    • • • • • • • •

    Schwalbe Tubes

    Schwalbe tubes have extremely high air retention and elasticity. We recommend Schwalbe Tubes for all of these tires.

    The Schwalbe AV4 is standard (shrader valve) for Brompton Wheels. This tube is used unless you have non-standard rims.

    WEIGHT: 85 grams

    STEM LENGTH: 40mm

    VALVE TYPE: Schrader Valve

    The Schwalbe SV4 is used on non-standard (presta valve) Brompton Wheels. This is used if your rims are setup for presta valve tubes.

    WEIGHT: 85 grams

    STEM LENGTH: 40mm

    VALVE: Presta Valve

    Click here to see all of our Brompton Tires & Tubes

  • Dec 27 2019

    Igaro-UK D2 dynamo charging units are here!

    Igaro D2 Dynamo Charger
    The Igaro D2 is tiny & packed with tech

    Igaro is a company in the UK making an extraordinary dynamo charging unit called the D2. Whether you are touring, randonneuring gravel grinding or spending the day out and about on your bike, the Igaro-UK D2 will keep your phone, Garmin, Wahoo, power bank or any number of USB devices charged no matter how many apps you're running.

    While we have been reliably using dynamo charging here at Perennial Cycle for several years now, we are always searching for the next evolution of this amazing technology. The Igaro-UK D2 has been of particular interest to us because it has new technical features that we have not seen before, namely the ability to auto-reconnect. What this means is that when a device has either stopped charging completely, or the device's charger has locked onto the lowest trickle of current (like when you encounter a big hill), the D2 will recognize this and once there's enough current to charge at a higher rate, the D2 restarts so the device will start accepting the higher current. This is the feature makes the D2 a plug and play charging device.
    Note: Your device needs to be plugged into the D2 while the bike is at a standstill. Being plugged in from a stop allows auto-reconnect to calibrate itself. Plugging in your device while rolling doesn't prevent the charger from working, it just won't activate auto-reconnect if needed. Some devices are capable of reconnecting after charging has been shut down due to a low current, so auto-reconnect is not always a necessary feature.

    Many of Perennial Cycle's dynamo super-users have ultimately ended up using their charging units to charge the Cinq5 Power Pack II (power bank). This is due to the fact that the Power Pack II is capable of adjusting its power intake to the flow that is being offered AND it can be used as a pass-through, so while it is being charged, it can also charge a device. Charging a The Power Pack II is the safest way to be sure you are going to be able to charge any device in all riding conditions, but the Igaro-UK D2's are as close to a sure bet as you'll find when connecting a device directly to your dynamo charging unit.

    There are 2 models of the D2 available at Perennial Cycle, D2-Standard and D2-Lite. While both models of the D2's have auto-reconnect, the D2-Standard adds tuning optimization to its function and is tuned to give optimal power output at 12 MPH. This translates to adding over 20% more power output at around 12 MPH vs. D2-Lite (or other charging units on the market).

    D2's are tiny and easy to tuck into a frame bag or handlebar bag. No matter where you place your D2, the power input pins need to be protected. We have found a nice little ABS box that works well to protect the D2. You can buy it with a USB-C input plug (plugs into the D2) that is about 5" long and the other end of this adaptor is a female USB-A plug.
    Note: If you have other adaptor cables that you plan to use, we'd recommend you buy our D2 Box as a DIY project so you can add holes specifically sized for your cable.

  • Dec 13 2019

    Next Generation of Dynamo Charging Units

    The Plug5, Igaro D2 and Appcon3000
    The Plug5, Igaro D2 and Appcon 3000

    In the past 6 months we’ve seen 3 new dynamo usb charging units come to market and in my view these products represent the next generation in dynamo charging. Don’t get me wrong, I love my Plug III and have used it to charge my phone a lot, but that unit is soon to be moved to my commuter so I can make room for one of these newer, higher tech models.

    Two of them I see as a response to what is a clear trend among long distance and touring cyclists that rely on their dynamo charging unit. This trend is to use their dynamo charging unit to charge a power bank, then use the power bank to charge their device (phone, garmin, wahoo, etc). There are a large amount of devices needing to be charged on the road, yet info regarding how these devices manage being charged is hard to find (in particular, how each device would handle a low, fluctuating power supply). Thus, the safest bet is to charge the power bank. Specifically the Smart Power Pack II because this power bank is designed for getting charged via dynamo power and can be charged while charging a device (pass-through technology).

    The third option is strictly a dynamo charging unit with a usb-c port with some tech advancements that we’ve dreamed about, though this is the first time they’ve been available to us. The biggest advancement that we are most excited about is auto-reconnect. This is an answer to my comment above about not knowing how well a device can be charged when the flow of power fluctuates (namely drops to a tiny flow on a hill climb). Often devices stop receiving power when the current dips too low and then it ignores the incoming power…even when the power supply increases. Auto-reconnect solves this problem by recognizing the issue and reconnecting to the device when the power supply is at a level that the device will accept.

    Here are the 3 options (plus a runner up):

    Appcon 3000 w/ Bag Option

    Appcon 3000: The Appcon 3000 has a lot of tech happening in a nice little package. A 3000 mAh power bank is integrated into this unit. It can be mounted a few ways on the bike. Using the steer tube mounting setup is probably the cleanest solution, though you need to know that the headset cap is not the USB port (like some other units), but the USB port and the incoming power lines come out of the cap with a few inches of durable cable. Whatever mounting setup you go with, the Appcon 3000 is designed to be easy to remove from the bike. This is because you might want to take it in the tent and use the power bank, or you may want to bring it into the cafe and charge the power bank via usb wall plug. Another added feature of the Appcon 3000 is an iOS or android App. The App uses bluetooth to connect to the Appcon 3000 and gives you tons of information about incoming and outgoing power.

    Cinq5 Plug5 Plus

    Cinq5 Plug5 Plus: The Plug5 Plus also has an integrated power bank. The power bank on the Plug5 Plus is 1000 mAh and is not capable of being charged from a wall mount and there’s no app for your phone, but there’s loads of tech in this unit. The Plug5 Plus has power management built into it so that charging a device AND having your lights on is a possibility, though we must understand that the hub only has so much power to give and the charging will happen much better when the lights are turned off. The Plug5 Plus is designed to fit into a steer tube. When this is possible, it’s an awesome setup as the USB-C plug is built into the top cap and the power bank along with all the electronics are hidden inside your steer tube. If you prefer a less permanent solution for mounting the Plug5 Plus (or you have a carbon steer tube), you can keep it external by using a length of 1-1/8” aluminum tubing to act as your mock steer tube. This will easily fit it into a frame bag or handlebar bag.

    Igaro-UK D2

    Igaro-UK D2: The Igaro-UK D2 is a simple, super lightweight and very techy dynamo charging unit. All Igaro D2’s have Auto-Reconnect technology built into them. With Auto-Reconnect you can successfully charge a variety of devices that might fail otherwise. The fail happens because the the device being charged might lock on to a very tiny stream of power, or possibly stop charging altogether because of the drop in power supply on a big climb. The D2’s will see this issue as it’s happening and automatically restart the charge process when there’s a higher power supply available. This charging shut down is a somewhat common struggle when using a  dynamo charging units that are not incorporating a pass-through power bank, so this is a pretty exciting feature to have. The Igaro D2-Standard has charge optimization built into it which is set for 12 MPH. This adds a nice little boost to the power output that the D2-Lite (or any other dynamo chargers) do not have. 

    Worth Mentioning (runner up):

    Cinq5 Smart Power Pack II

    Cinq5 Smart Power Pack II: I would be remiss to not mention that while the Smart Power Pack II is not a new product, it is something that’s been gaining in popularity in the past 18 months. This is due to the fact that this power bank is pretty awesome. It is capable of adjusting it’s power intake with the power supply being offered AND it can charge and be charged (act as a pass-through). These are features that all 3 of the next generation of dynamo chargers are working to address. So if you have a charging unit that you’d like to breathe new life into, you might want to consider getting the Smart Power Pack II

    •   •   •   •   •

    Looking for more info about using dynamo power? Check out these blogposts:
    - Dynamo Lighting Basics
    - USB Charging w/Dynamo Power

    Here are some relevant links for our shop:
    Dynamo Charging Units - Dynamo Products - Dynamo Lights  -  Dynamo Wheels

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