Bike frames are designed primarily to suit a certain purpose. Think about how you intend on using your bike the majority of the time.
Folding Frames - These are versatile bikes that offer the convenience of often fitting into the boot of a small car and unfold into a small bike. These come in both low step configurations and cross bar configurations. The limitations of folding bikes generally come down to the smaller sized tyres. These limit these bikes to around town and very light trail situations. The exception to this rule is the WattWheels Scout which uses fat tyres to overcome this limitation.
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Cargo Frames - As the name implies, these bikes are designed to move goods. They are generally accommodate a similar in wheel size to a folding bike however the frame is usually rigid to be capable of taking heavy weight. The same limitations apply due to the tire size however these frames allow for some versatile activities. They may offer the facility to take two batteries or accommodate a second rider on the rear in some cases. This extra enforcement does add to the cost however if you are pulling cargo, or a couple children around, this may be the right bike for you.
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Step Through - This shape lends itself to easy access. If you have trouble swinging your leg over the back of a bike or are planning on riding in clothing that restricts your ability to do this, a step through frame is the perfect way to go. These frames come in various configurations from low step options allowing for very easy access, to what is known as the trapeze frame which trades off some of this ease of access for frame reinforcement (see both models below).
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Crossbar / Hard Tail - the most widely reconsidered bike frame, the crossbar comes in many different variations. This frame requires you to mount it by throwing your leg over the rear wheel which limits it to some for accessibility reasons. Aside from this drawback, the crossbar generally provides a very stable platform and is a suitable frame choice for commuting, rail trails, trekking and mountain bike applications.
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Full Suspension / Soft Tail - These bikes are generally very similar to the crossbar or hard tail frames however offer a suspension system under or just behind where you sit. This suspension system generally adds to the overall price of the bike however gives unparalleled comfort and vastly adds to the bikes off-road capability. A full suspension frame is ideal for anyone who is wanting a very plush ride offroad or anyone who is looking for a serious mountain biking machine that will look after them against their better judgement (don't worry, that's generally us in store too).
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Other Types - If you haven't found what you are looking for yet, don't worry. There are many bikes which don't quite fit into any of these categories. These include the likes of trikes, motorcycle
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