Freddie wrote:What you seem to suggest is that there is no such thing as objectively good handling and that all handling is dependent on the individual riding the bicycle.pjclinch wrote:That different people interact differently with different bikes is hardly a surprise. So it's no surprise that just as you and 531colin don't get on with Brom handling, there's plenty (like me) that do. And for those that do get on with a Brom, that a Tern may be more stable is a bit of a moot point. A trike is easier to balance than any of my bikes, but if I don't really have any trouble balancing my bikes then the extra point of balance stability on a trike is really neither here nor there for me.
Is that really true? Whilst there are people who can't ride no hands whatever the bicycle and even people that can't ride a bicycle at all, this doesn't discount the fact that some bicycles are more stable than others and there is a range in which a bicycle provides normal handling and outside of this range the handling is sub-optimal.
Why should somebody have to relearn how to ride a specific bicycle? Doesn't that suggest the design is flawed from the get go (save things like fixed gear, which is a different kettle of fish).
Your assumption is that stability no-hands is of itself a Good Thing that trumps any other Good Things (like it folds up and goes in a very small space, or can turn on a sixpence), and that's not a safe one. I think "relearn how to ride a specific bicycle" is hugely over-egging the pudding. IME this process typically consists of get on, off you go, "oh, this feels a bit odd", couple of minutes getting used to it, "oh, it's okay after all", The End. But even if you weren't over egging the pudding, why should you learn something different? Because you might get something worthwhile that works well for you better than what you had before (so I put in the time to learn to ride on a recumbent, and now I'm more comfortable so enjoy my touring more, even if I can't ride it no-hands).
All bicycles are compromises at some level, and are thus intrinsically flawed at some level. You show me Freddie's Improved Brompton which is more inherently stable to ride no-hands and I'll show you a spot in traffic it's rather harder to pop through than my Mk. 3. There is no such thing as "objectively good handling", because different people want different things from their handling. The world speed record holding bike needs to be rock-steady at 80 mph with a rider on the verge of passing out, and yes, you really want stability there. I'd guess the turning circle is something akin to a jumbo jet, OTOH...
You'd probably get consensus (as opposed to objectivity) on what constitutes very poor handling. I don't think I've ever heard a good word about the original Bickerton's ride, but while the Brom does have people who find it over their personal line the amount of happy customers who have no trouble suggests it's in, or at least very close to, "a range in which a bicycle provides normal handling" for most of the people, most of the time.