Having already created a clever way to create a full size folding rigid 29er/road bike, Fenix Bykes owner Scott Turner decided it was time to adapt the technology to smaller wheels and bigger tires. Specifically, Scott wanted to be able to take a bike with him when he went to visit his family in Florida. Not far from one of Florida’s best spots for mountain biking, the Santos trails served as the inspiration for the Santos and Santos Plus. If you’ve ridden Santos you know that thanks to all of the jumps and features (that are still being added to by folks like Ray Petro), a bike with suspension and slacker geometry can come in handy.
Wanting to put a full size hard tail mountain bike with a longer travel suspension fork and 27.5″ wheels and even a plus size mountain bike into a travel suitcase meant a few modifications to the design were required…
Fenix Bykes use a unique folding method which centers around an eccentric bottom bracket that is split into three pieces. The center section is fixed to the seat and down tube while the outer two sections pivot around the center and are attached to the chain stays. Once you remove the bolts holding the seat and chain stays together and loosen the BB and seat stay hardware, the stays are free to swing closed to a much more compact position.
Each bike closes a little differently, with the Santos and Santos Plus folding the chain stays under and the seat stays over the frame. On the left above is the Fenix Macleod and the right is the Santos suffer into their respective cases. One major benefit to the Santos appears to be the ability to fit the wheels into the case without removing the tires.
Currently, Fenix does not offer their own cases but is looking into it. The case on the left is from Co-motion cycles. Built around a 140mm travel fork, the Santos uses 142x12mm dropouts, an eccentric BB, and sells for $2100 for the frame or complete 1×11 builds that start at $3750. The Santos Plus will be a 27.5+ bike with rigid, suspension, and Rohloff options available starting at $3300 for the Rigid.
Fenix also offers the non-folding B2B (back to basics). The multi-purpose road bike has adjustable dropouts, full rack and fender mounts, 35mm tire clearance and starts at $3150 for complete builds.
And because he’s gotta pay the rent, the 8 speed Alfine Di2 Macleoud folding 29er shown above is currently for sale on ebay. It’s brand new and is starting at $2800…