Posted on 03 June 2022
Our Top 15 Recommended Brompton Upgrades
If you’re reading this blog, chances are you’re sold on Brompton being the single best folding bike on the market (and you’d be right!). But nobody’s perfect - and that includes Brompton. These are some of the most common upgrades we make to our customer’s Brompton bikes, and what we recommend checking out if you’re buying a Brompton or looking to soup up an existing bike.
1. Easy Wheels
Easy Wheels: The frame wheels supplied with your Brompton are small and more suited to standing the bike up when folded than actual mobility. Upgrade to a wider Easy Wheel with a rubber wheel to lift the bike higher off the ground (preventing fender scratches) and making it more mobile when folded.
2. Rear Rack
Rear Rack: All Brompton C Line bikes come stock with a Front Carrier Block that allows you to snap on any of Brompton’s lineup of front bags. But the block is only rated to carry 22 lbs of weight - what if you need more storage space? The Brompton Rear Rack is the solution. Not only does it provide a flat mounting spot for another 22 lbs of weight, it also adds another 2 frame wheels to the bike, making it more stable when folded and much more mobile in “grocery cart” mode. These wheels allow you to push the bike ahead of you in stores, rather than pull it behind you with the fender wheel slightly lifted off the ground. Overall this is a great choice and one of our most popular build requests.
For maximum functionality, we recommend sticking with the Brompton-brand Rear Rack rather than buying an aftermarket one, as cheap lightweight carbon rails can break with frequent use - especially if you are using the rack to carry weight and not just as a transport enhancer.
3. Titanium Seatpost
For folks super concerned with reducing the weight of their Brompton, changing the material of the seatpost is a big one - this is a big piece of metal and titanium is lighter than the standard aluminum. For the rest of us, making the bike more comfortable makes you want to ride farther and more often, and the quickest way to do that is by switching to a titanium seatpost. Titanium is incredibly strong, flexy, and vibration dampening - meaning a smoother ride on rougher roads.
4. Hinge Clamp Levers & Plates
Your Brompton comes supplied with stock hinge clamp levers and plates that take two hands to use / open. Upgraded longer levers with equidistant handles makes unlocking and locking the Brompton fold easier and faster - which makes a big difference to ease of use when you’re folding and unfolding multiple times per trip, eg. running errands. The hinge clamp plates feature a spring under the plate and one underside lip longer than the other, which allows you to twist the hinge clamp lever one-handed without needing to also hold the plate in the ideal position to seat it perfectly.
5. Dynamo Lighting
No one wants to be caught out in the dark with a long commute ahead and zero visibility on dark roads. Those days are over with dynamo lighting - powered by a front dynamo hub located in your front wheel, front and rear dynamo lights come on automatically when you pedal and ensure you can see and be seen. Our dynamo kits include rear lights with stand capacitors that keep the lights on for several minutes after you stop, promising visibility and safety while waiting for red lights to go green. No matter your needs and budget, we have a dynamo light system that will meet your applications.
6. Battery Lighting
If you’re not ready to go whole hog and install a dynamo system on your bike, or you are only an occasional night rider, you can opt for battery lighting for your Brompton. Brompton paired up with Cateye to design easy-to-remove, USB-rechargeable lights that take up minimal space under the front bag and saddle but kick out a ton of light.
7. Scratch Guard
8. B17 Brooks Saddle
Brooks saddles have a cult following, and for good reason. The supple leather molds to your sit bones with time, making it custom-fit your body and provide the ultimate support for long rides. They are still handmade in England and Italy and the Special lineup features hand-hammered brass rivets that just look lush.
9. Ergon Grips
Brompton supplies their bikes with circular grips that are perfectly functional, but not entirely comfortable for long rides. Upgrading to the Ergon GP-1 grips provides you with physician-approved ergonomic palm support and a more natural wrist position. If you have a Brooks leather saddle, you can get the grips to match by opting for the Brooks x Ergon GP-1 grips.
10. Joseph Kuosac Handlebars
Joseph Kuosac is dedicated to making things that improve the functionality of your Brompton and that is the case for their handlebars. Bromptons are quite customizable in their stem height options, but for “Goldilocks riders” who need an in-between height the Joseph Kuosac Mid-Rise Handlebar is a godsend. It reduces the drop of a handlebar to 1.5”, halfway between the stock size and the stem size below it (eg. Installed on a High Handlebar Brompton, the handlebar would be halfway between the High Handlebar and Mid Handlebar heights). Joseph Kuosac handlebars are also ever so slightly swung back to provide a more ergonomic hand position - including on their flat bar alloy model. Looking to shave weight and/or add comfort? The Joseph Kuosac Carbon handlebars are available in a flat-bar (for Low Handlebar bikes) or mid-rise configuration (for Mid or High Handlebar bikes).
11. Brompton Toolkit
Be prepared! If anything mechanical goes amiss on your Brompton, you’ll want to fix it if you can. The Brompton Toolkit is a nifty little number that includes every tool and drill bit you’ll need for minor repairs all encased in a kit that fits within the bike frame to stay snug and hidden away until you need it.
12. QuadLock Phone Mount
After many requests for an out-front phone mount for Bromptons, QuadLock came through with one specifically designed for Brompton handlebars. Keep your phone close at hand to use for Strava, wayfinding, or keeping tabs on your friends’ texts mid-ride. The QuadLock is available in a mount-only (if you already have a QuadLock phone case) or mount-and-universal-adapter combo (attach the 3M adapter to the back of your existing phone case).
13. Fahrer Front Rack
Planning on carrying some weird-shaped stuff on your Brompton that won’t fit in a front bag? The Fahrer Front Rack might be your new best friend. It slips onto the Front Carrier Block and supports up to 22lbs of whatever you can bungee onto it. Don’t need the extra storage? Remove it in seconds to make your bike more streamlined.
14. Fahrer Handle
To fold or not to fold - that is the question. When travelling with your bike up and down stairs in public transit, some folks like folding their bike to keep its size minimal, while others carry it unfolded by lifting the bike. The Fahrer Handel makes carrying your unfolded bike easier - the padded rubber handle provides a secure, ergonomic grip.
15. Brompton Transit Travel Bag
If you’re traveling with your Brompton on airlines or buses, giving your bike as much protection from rough baggage handlers as you can is paramount. The Brompton Transit Travel Bag is just the right size for your Brompton and its padded walls reinforced with plastic sides reduce the impacts of bumps and scrapes behind the scenes at airports. Four small roller wheels on the bottom make it easy to navigate hotel lobbies and travel terminals. And best of all, it folds flat when not in use, making it easy to store in a closet or under the bed when you’re not travelling.