F40 Owners please respond



cyclingpj

New Member
Jul 30, 2006
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Hi, I'm looking to buy a F40. Would appreciate the perspective of current owners on any of the following:
Handling in severe side winds...worst case stories
Handling in side winds without the fabric
Product quality
Lightning customer service
Lightning bike delivery time actual vs promised
Climbing
Satisfaction over all...would you do it again?

Thanks for your response,
Paul Jones
Northern CA
 

vlaming

New Member
Mar 5, 2005
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ML: My 1-year 2500 mile experience written briefly against your text below: (separate longer email sent also)

cyclingpj said:
Hi, I'm looking to buy a F40. Would appreciate the perspective of current owners on any of the following:

Handling in severe side winds...worst case stories
>>ML: One foot is maximum I have gone off course, 30-40mph cross-wind through gaps in hedge. Practice helps. Don't grip the handlebars, just use thumb and fore-finger. Stopping pedalling and/or slowing down helps.

Handling in side winds without the fabric
>>ML: Doesn't help. The rear fairing structure has a lot of fabric even when you take the cloth cover off. The rigid nose-cone depends to some extent on the presence of the cloth cover Velcro-ed to it.

Product quality
>>ML: Very good. Only ****les: (a) Pulley support for chain in middle of its run breaks quickly, replace with 4" plastic tube flexibly Duck-taped to frame,
(b) Rear wheel covers made with mould for previous wheel without disc brakes, so one rubs against the disc, I had to cut out a large circle to prevent, (c) Nuts/bolts attaching rear fairing to frame not brilliant, (d) Tyres not the best against punctures.

Lightning customer service
>>ML: As stated on website, customers are strongly advised to use their local distributor, in my case www.4sev.de in Germany (whose Christian Wagner gave excellent customer service). It is difficult to contact Lighning direct, but I did get through by phone to Tim Brummer after a few tries, he was very helpful, but, well, probably email would be better or local distributor, but he doesn't promise anything different.

Lightning bike delivery time actual vs promised
>>ML: Promise was 2-3 months. Actual was 4 months. But everything did work first time.

Climbing
>>ML: Surprisingly good, the relatively upright position of the back means you don't slide back in the seat as you push the pedals, good for acceleration as well as hills. It is the lightest fully faired recumbent on the market I am aware of, every saved kilogramme helps uphill. It does get hot, helps to put zip on both sides of cloth cover and strap to nose-cone.

Satisfaction over all...would you do it again?
>>ML: Yes, but I wouldn't bother with the windscreen.

Thanks for your response,
Paul Jones
Northern CA