Customer Reviews: Dahon Jack D7 Folding Bike (Shadow)
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on April 6, 2011
First of all I am not a bike expert - take my word what it is worth for. I bought Dahon Jack D7 in May 2010 and have put on about 900 miles on it. I wanted to drop a few pounds and found it too daunting to jog for an hour daily. Instead, I bought this bike as a lazy man's work out machine. I must say that I enjoyed riding this bike. More importantly, it didn't need any maintenance during this time, except inflating the tires couple of times. It held on pretty well. For the coming season, I got it serviced (before 1 year free servicing assurance it came with ran out) already. On the plus side it's light, sturdy, and feels comfortable for a 180 lb guy. It runs pretty smooth on mud roads and bike paths. Schwalbe Big apple tires are pretty good (and pretty fat) and you do not need the extra balance/expertise of the Pros to ride on them. I paid the extra bucks for this bike for the sake of its portability. Folding is pretty easy and takes about 10 seconds. I live in a 3rd floor Apt. - moving it up and down is pretty easy for an adult (It weighs about 13 Kg). Once folded it fits into the trunk of mid size sedans. Gears shift seamlessly and Derailleur works fine. Seat post doubles up as an emergency pump.

On the negative side, adding fender/splash guards is pretty tough job, especially the front one. I tried couple of them but finally gave up. For the rear fender, I bought a SKS X-Tra-Dry Fender and it worked fine. Given that it is a folding bike, it is not that easy to design add-on friendly frame. Another annoyance is the seat. It's too small and hard as a rock. I bought some seat cushions but it still feels tiny for the comfort ride - pain around the butt, literally! It is significant issue because this bike is not for hardened Pros - it is built for casual riders. One more minor annoyance is that because of the folding design, you cannot fit in a big bottle holder (and big water bottle). The pictures you see on the web are slightly misleading (including on Dahon website). It is all-black frame bike; not the grey colored frame as seen.

I bought it from Brands Cycle store in Wantagh (Long Island), NY for $529 (plus tax). They throw one year free service and the servicing part is pretty impressive. I got it serviced in under an hour and all was done in one trip. I have seen Costco selling double suspension disc brake mountain bikes for under $300. The price tag (currently $599) is probably on the higher side for this bike. However, if it is not your main concern, this is a nice bike to get and you will enjoy short commutes as well as casual rides alike. I was tempted to give it 5 stars; however, it looses a star because of its price to performance ratio.
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VINE VOICEon June 19, 2011
I have owned three Dahon folding bikes; the first one I bought in April 2003, a Matrix for $400, which lasted until September 2009 and I rode that bike every day, putting, by my estimate, around 20,000 miles on it. Fantastic bike, the aluminum frame finally wore out and broke beneath the seat. So I bought a new Matrix (for $749) right after, but Dahon changed the frame and after less than a year of riding it daily, an OC bolt came out and now the bike is no longer a folding bike, as I had to lock it down to compensate for the missing bolt. To make matters worse, it turns out that the company no longer carries parts for it - a bike they sold only a year-and-a-half before! So still wanting a folder, I looked up the Dahon Jack and saw that it actually uses the older type of folding mechanism, but is only a 7-speed as opposed to the Matrix 24-speed gears (and yet costs $500). But it is lighter, and suits what I mainly use it for, which is mostly paved trail riding. I did note that the folding mechanism was incredibly stiff, and has only started to loosen up recently even after applying oil to the hinges. So, now the latest - as I was climbing a hill the other day, I hear a loud POP and notice that the rear wheel is wobbling badly. Fortunately I was near my car, so I took it in, and, as I feared, a spoke broke at the hub. I have only had the bike for two months... I don't know what it will cost as it's now in the shop, but even if nothing else goes out on it, I am through with Dahon for good. Their products have diminished in quality significantly these past eight years, and their service is lousy - they will not even speak to a customer - you have to go through a bike shop.
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on April 28, 2014
I've had this bike for a few months now. I've used it to commute in Washington D.C. (live 15 miles from the center). I give it 5 stars for my application. It is a nice quality, tough bicycle. I have no complaints over the build quality or the components used. Once unfolded, you cannot tell the difference between this bicycle and other, similarly-priced bicycles (Cannondale, Giant, Trek, etc). It rides virtually the same. Plus, it has the Schwalbe Big Apple tires which can take the abuse of city streets.

It's freaking cool looking. The matte black was a great decision by Dahon, but I did notice the newest Dahon Jack is white - bummer. I get many compliments and I am regularly bothered by people asking about it. It was a novelty at first, but even the bums start asking about it. It's also fairly light. At less than 30 lbs, you can easily carry it for short distances. You can add some carbon fiber components to reduce the weight, but I found it unnecessary. This is similar in weight to the smaller Dahon bicycles.

Portability and ease of use is fantastic. It folds and unfolds in less than a couple seconds. I can throw it in almost any car's trunk. I was so impressed with it, I bought another one for my wife. We easily fit both bicycles in our small car.

The drawbacks to this bike are not big deals to me. First, it has 7 speeds - which some may find annoying, but I find more than capable even with decent inclines. Second, it doesn't have suspension... riding through city potholes can be quite precarious. Third, it's not a mountain bike and is not meant to be off-road. Fourth, the pedals don't fold which I thought was a staple on Dahon bikes. For $50, you can buy very nice folding pedals. Finally, the frame squeaks - much like other bikes, but it squeaks at the folding mechanism when you really get on it.

Finally (and most importantly for my application), this bike isn't considered a bicycle by DC Metro (and many other subway lines in the U.S.). It is considered a piece of luggage. Therefore, I can bring this bike on any bus or train without hassle - even during rush hour. It easily fits through gates and is easy to keep next to you while your sitting or walking.
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on October 17, 2015
I used to have a Dahon bike that was stolen from me a few years ago. I went with this one since I love the folding feature of these bikes and ended up loving this one. Perfect for both on and off road ventures. The communication from the company is superb and I don't see myself switching brands anytime soon. Bike came disassembled but was easy to setup. Recommend this bike highly!
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on February 12, 2016
I purchased the Dahon Jack D7 almost two years ago for a short (2.5 mi one-way) urban commute. First of all, assembly wasn't too terrible. A few hints were picked up by previous reviewers regarding the stem positioning- saved me at least one headache. Otherwise assembly was uneventful. Took it in to the bike shop for tune up and no problems at all so far.

The bike handles really well and the overall design is sturdy, attractive and not too heavy. It folds easy enough but I've never felt the need to go beyond removing the seat and folding it. I haven't needed to adjust the handle bars yet.

I've added a few things over the last few months- a water bottle holder that attaches to the stem, a rack that attaches to the seat post, a computer and lights for front and back.

I've ridden hundreds of miles without any issue. I have re-inflated the tires occasionally. No flats so far. Gears are smooth and easy and the chain stays intact.

I wish this model came with fenders but it doesn't and I love it anyway.

Like other reviewers I lost a pedal (not sure which at this point- sorry) right after I got it. It was a pain at the time but nothing the local bike shop couldn't fix.
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on April 15, 2013
I purchased this bike because I wanted a full size bike that would fold up and fit in my company vehicle. This bike fills the bill. This bike seems to be extremely well built and the components are good including the kevlar Schwalbe tires and the bicycle pump in the seat stem. It's a very light bike too, which helps moving it up and down stairs. On the down side though, is the instruction data provided. Basically, setting this bike up the first time was like building a nuclear weapon using a cave painting. I'm an aircraft mechanic so I'm fairly handy. It still took me the better part of an evening to unpack, assemble, and fit this bike using the instructions provided, which don't match the bike too well. I suppose one could always pay a bike shop to handle that chore if necessary. Once I got the bike how I want it, it rides great and folds fairly quickly into a pretty small size. I am sure it would fit easily into any normal car trunk.
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on July 9, 2014
I really like the bike, easy to ride and easy to fold up. I highly recommend this for anyone who has a storage problem and I keep mine in the trunk of my car so I will not take up any room in my condo.
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on August 25, 2011
I've had my Jack for quite a while now, and it's hard not to gush about it. It's a fun, practical bike for commuting and recreation, with many nice appointments which set it apart from other bikes. It was a piece of cake to assemble, and it's held up great under pretty intensive use despite its light weight. I've owned many mid-range bikes, and this is by far my favorite.
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on October 2, 2015
Dahon has extremely firm proprietary control over their bikes. You would think you'd be able to buy a basic part part like a rim only a few years after buying an 800 dollar bike from a company. Well, 7 years ago I bought a Curve SL and the back rim has since cracked. Dahon told me, "We don't' make a 16" double wall rim with 28 hole spokes anymore," They said, "You're on your own!" They were correct! You cannot find the needed rim anywhere on the internet. Simply isn't out there. Moreover, the several dealers and bike shops I've spoken to in Chicago likened finding a 16" double walled rim with 28 spoke-holes to "finding a Unicorn". So basically I have a perfectly good bike with a cracked rim that I can't ride anymore. Nice going Dahon! In retrospect I would not have bought this bike knowing the issues I would have with this company. It's boggles the mind actually.
There, now you are advised!!
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on January 7, 2015
Solid feeling. Folds easily. A folding bike on which you do not look like a Shriner. Components poor, however.. Pedals/cranks are especially low quality. Cranks strip very easily. Left pedal fell off on the first ride.. I read at least four blogs which mention the left pedal falling off. Customer service from Dahon very poor regarding parts. When I called Dahon Customer service they blamed me and referred me to a supplier who did not carry their parts. Monti who was especially rude suggested that I not buy on Amazon. A shame, I like the bike otherwise. Good gear range. I have received complements while riding it. Dahon Customer service also told me "you should have purchased it at a bike shop."
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