'Bromptification' The art of modifying a Brompton folding bike.
Compared to most, the Brompton is far more customisable than the average bike. Go down the 'Brompton bike builder' route to create you Brompton, rather than getting an ‘off-the-shelf’ model from your local dealer, and you have over 16,000,000 combinations to choose from!
That being said, there are still many proud Brompton owners who choose to enhance their beloved bikes even further. Tweaking and altering colours, components and the finishing kits to get a truly individualised bike that is perfect for their needs and is completely unique to them. More significant alterations that can be made to a Brompton, including things like; a Rohloff rear hub gear conversion, or even an electric conversion kit. We have even seen more surprising customisations including a Brompton Recumbent, and even stranger!
There are a number of aftermarket manufactures that make unique part and accessories for the Brompton. A couple of notable aftermarket component manufacturers are Brompfication & Ti-Parts Workshop.
BROMPFICATION Brompfication was formed by a Danish Brompton fanatic named Peter Griebel in September 2010, they design and produce modifications for Bromptons with a simple design the is functional and durable.
TI-PARTS WORKSHOP Based in Hong Kong, Ti Parts Workshop supply precision manufactured titanium and aluminium component for the Brompton. Making everything from titanium but and bolts to chain tensioners and more. Their titanium parts are often commonplace on ultralight custom Brompton builds.
Check out more from Ti-Parts Workshop HERE But don't let manufacturers limit your creativity. Some people have used skateboard wheels in place of Eazy Wheels, other have even manufactured their own part, including creating custom gadget mounts and carry straps for their bikes.
CUSTOM DRIVE CHAINS
Despite (and possibly because of) Bromptons being limited to only 4 main gearing options as stock (1, 2, 3 & 6 Speed), we have come across a number of interesting 'bromptifications' to modify the gearing of the bike. Some people have experimented with different sized sprockets and chainrings, others have attempted to mount front deraillure system to there bikes. Others, like a brilliant company called Kinetics, will even upgrade your rear hub to a 14 speed Rohloff hub, but this will have to come with a custom rear tringle to accomodate the wider hub.
Kinetics, the futuristic sounding company, is actually just one man – Ben Cooper, working out of a workshop in Glasgow, Scotland. Ben appears to be the market leader (in the UK at least) in creating custom Brompton drive chains, as well as developing a number of other nifty Brompton modifications. His list of customisations includes DIY kits right through to full customer new-builds. Options include;
14-speed Rohloff hub gear kit – The Rohloff is the ultimate gearing system, a very wide range and incredible reliability and efficiency.
8- and 11-speed Alfine hub gear kits – The Alfine hubs are good quality hubs which can also have a disc brake.
8-speed Sturmey Archer hub gear kit – The Sturmey has a decent range, but the big advantage it it fits unmodified Brompton frames.
Disc Brake Kits – For much,much more powerful braking, and no more worn out rims.
Electric Assist Kits for a bit of help with hills and headwinds.
Front Pannier Racks – To carry normal panniers on the Brompton front luggage block.
Brompton produce their own range of luggage for their bikes, but there are also a number of after make pieces that work really well, so manufactures are even specifically designing luggage for the Brompton.
Carradice - The iconic British cycle bag manufacturer also has a range of luggage that can be used with your Brompton. They make a number of their saddle bags that work very well (2 of our favourites are; The Barley & The Originals Zipped Roll). Carradice also make a couple of custom bags that can take a Brompton Front Luggage Frame allowing them to be fitter to the Brompton Front carrier block (Including; The Originals City Folder M). Carradice's waxed duck cotton bicycle bags have a classical look and have been a staple of many cycle tourist for years.
Radical design actually produce some of their luggage for Brompton (Both our T Bags have Radcial Designs label inside them) As well as the Brompton branded luggage Radical Designs make, they also produce trailers, some of these trailers can even be used with your Brompton. This trailer not only attaches to the Brompton allowing you to carry more gear, you can even carry the Brompton inside it, check out the video below.
Dynamo equip Brompton bike can be fitted with USB charging devices such as the Busch & Muller E-Werk & USB Werk, or similar devices from alternative manufacturers. These can be a solution to keeping your gadgets powered up whilst on tour!
THE ELECTRIC BROMPTON
From powering your gadgets to powering your bike. There are a number of electric conversion kits available for the Brompton from a range of manufacturers. The one that really caught our eye was the Add-e electric conversion kit for Brompton.
Launched in 2017, The Electric Brompton is the first electric-assist bike that Brompton have produced. This is not a conversion kit but a purpose built electric Brompton - These are newly released (in 2017) Bromptons will be available through local Brompton dealers soon - We cannot wait to give one a try!
Based in Austria, Add-e specialise in making electric conversion kits that can be mounted onto existing (non-electric) bikes. They make 2 kits for the Brompton (Standard & Sport versions are available), these kits consist of a compact electric motors that when fitted a don't interfere with the fold of the bike, and a detachable water bottle style battery pack. The kit will add about about 2.5kg to the weight of the bike however will certainly give you a few extra horse power.
The 'IT Chair' for Brompton, allows you to add a child seat to your folding bike.
Suitable for children aged 3-6, the 'IT Chair' enable a child ride along on the Brompton,
The child a saddle, that is attached to the top of aluminium tube, resulting in the child and can rest their feet on their own pair of footrests, and can hold onto the handlebars as you ride along. The rear of the child seat attachment clamps to the top of the Brompton seat post and then the front hooks under the main hinge in the centre of the frame. When unhooked from the front, you can then swing the IT Chair to one side, by twisting the seat post, to allowing the bike to still be folded with the IT Chair attached (as pictured above).
This certainly isn't a cheap piece of kit, at £210 (available from bikefix.com), but i often struggle to find anything Brompton related that is, but the 'IT Chair' certainly does give you a unique feature allowing you to take your child along on Brompton adventure too...Until they are old enough for their own Brompton!
We know, we couldn't believe it when we saw it either... A Brompton Recumbent!
When searching the internet for weird and wonderful Brompton customisation we came across the Brompton Recumbent.
Not much is known about this mythical beast but we such would like to take it for a spin.
In case you didn't think a Recumbent Brompton was crazy enough, check out this crazy design from the brilliant mind of one; Mr Steve Parry *Drum roll please*... the Tandem Brompton.
& it still folds... ...sort of !?
Check out the ways we have customised our Bromptons to make them out ideal touring bikes