Retrospec Speck SS Folding Bicycle Review - A Single Speed Challenging Dahon Speed Uno
When it comes to commuter and urban dwellers’ choice for a bike, many consumers trust Retrospec Bicycles. This company has been closely identified with manufacturing these types of bicycles since 2008.
City dwellers are known to patronize a product that makes living in the city easier and less complicated. Retrospec Bicycles Speck Folding Single-Speed Bicycle is a foldable single speed bike that allows its rider to pedal backwards when there is a need to stop, this is similar to the Dahon Speed Uno. Here we see two things that work in its favor: single-speed and folding capabilities which means it occupies less space. This bike is categorized under leisure rides.
This folding bike really does live up to its reputation that allows riders to fold the bike in an estimated time of 20 seconds. Restrospec is proud to launch this folding bicycle that does not require the use of special cables or other gears to fold. This was tested and proven to be true by owners who have purchased this bicycle. Restrospec Bicycles Customer Care is known for its fast response to parts that needs to be replaced without questions asked.
Unfortunately, I have to say this is one of the worst folding bikes I’ve ever reviewed. In fact, I even couldn’t ride it because it arrived damaged. As you can see in the videos and images below, the rear wheel rim is totally deformed and bent, and some spokes are out of place. I’m not sure if the damage is caused by transportation, bad quality control of Retrospec, or the cheap materials used on this bike.
Then I discovered some more issues of the Speck. Firstly, the included manual is for a different bike, so you won’t find any instruction for this bike. Secondly, the pedal is so stiff that I couldn’t fold it back. And most seriously, the handlebar can’t be adjusted perpendicularly to the front wheel, it is always 5-10 degrees out of alignment, therefore, it could be very dangerous riding the bike. Notably, I read some reviews of the bike and realized there are many similar complaints of those issues.
Features and Specs
Here are some of the key features of Retrospec Speck Folding Single-Speed Bike:
- Available colors: Cream, Graphite, Matte Black, Glossy White, Matte Coral, Matte Navy.
- Weight: 23.5 lbs
- Folded size: 10″ x 30″ x 22″
- Hand-built aluminum frame and fork; 30% lighter than steel or chromoly
- 20-inch wheels
- Alloy Crank with 48T chainring
- Comes with Kwenda Kwest commuter tires
- Folding pedals
- Strong 16T Coaster Brake Cog
- Alloy seat post with comfortable saddle
Folding and Unfolding
- Comes with a ergonomically comfortable saddle; makes commuting easy.
- Super lightweight for a single-speed bicycle.
- Allows large amount of water dispersion through its specially designed commuter tires.
- Simple yet elegant design.
- The height of handlebar is adjustable.
- There is still a need to take it to a local bike shop before riding it to ensure safety and that all parts are where they should be.
- Made of cheap materials, so the frame and wheels are not sturdy enough. My bike arrived damaged.
- Bad manual which shows instructions for a different bike.
- I couldn’t align the handlebar perpendicular to the front wheel.
- I couldn’t fold the pedal back.
- Needs a little getting used to it for those who are not accustomed to using coaster brakes (back pedaling brakes). Other bicycles usually offer front and back brakes
- Crank length is a bit small to accommodate a taller individual
- Only suitable for casual riding.
- Mudguards and rear rack are not included.
- It is heavier than advertised, its real weight is 23.5 lbs.
- Inconvenient locking mechanism, you will need to use the included strap to secure wheels in the folded position.
It cannot be denied that Speck is a good-looking bike to cruise in the neighborhood for a quick spin or for daily exercise. Ideally it can be used in flat surfaces and climbing smaller hills. This bike has undoubtedly left behind a good impression for many customers but not me. I don’t recommend this bike until Retrospec Bicycles fix the aforementioned issues. The Dahon Speed Uno is priced higher and it is totally worth the extra money.
Regular Price: $319