As one of the biggest folding bike manufacturers in the world, Dahon has a reputation to uphold when it comes to the quality of Dahon folding bikes. With over thirty folding bikes available, and new models coming out every year, Dahon is constantly upgrading their hinges, frames, and other aspects of their bikes that distinguish them from other manufacturers. Often times, these developments are unique to Dahon folding bikes, and have unique names that don't really make sense upon first glance.
We've decided to set upon a task to define some of these technologies for you, the folding bike rider. This way, when you're looking at different Dahon folding bicycles, you'll know the meaning behind all of these fancy names.
In 2010, Dahon started producing folding bikes with a stronger, hydroformed frame. These folding bikes were touted as being stronger than standard aluminum frames, with a higher strength to weight ratio. So what exactly is hydroforming?
Breaking apart hydroforming into its root words, the definition literally means forming the metal using hydraulic fluid. An aluminum frame is placed into a negative mold, and hydraulic fluid is pressed in around the metal at very high pressure by pistons, causing the metal to press into the space of the mold.
Because the frame shape can be optimized to be larger under the seat post and around the hinges, where most of the stress is placed, these hydroformed frames are stronger than the standard monotube Dahon folding bicycle. They are also just as lightweight, because no additional metal is added to produce this frame shape. Hence, the strength to weight ratio is higher.