Hill Climbing?

Discussion in 'Recumbent bicycles' started by Mich, Jun 8, 2003.

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  1. Mich

    Mich Guest

    I am considering becoming a 'bent' owner BUT I live in the hilly mountainous State of New Hampshire.
    There are several very looong hills with 7 degree or more grades on some of my favorite loops. My
    question is, would a recumbent be practical for this kind of terrain? Thank You. Danielle
     
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  2. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    > I am considering becoming a 'bent' owner BUT I live in the hilly mountainous State of New
    > Hampshire. There are several very looong hills with 7 degree or more grades on some of my favorite
    > loops. My question is, would a recumbent be practical for this kind of terrain? Thank You.
    > Danielle

    It would depend on what your want out of the bike. If you do no mind being a little slower up the
    hills with an increase in overall performance, then yes. If you travel with the fast DF crowd, you
    may not enjoy the experience and if it is important for you to stay with your DF friends, then you
    probably should stick with a bike 'like theirs'.

    If you decide on a recumbent, then you will need to improve the gearing. An 18" to 21" low gear
    would be prefered. You can also use a top gear that exceeds 115" You will need to get comfortable
    with 3mph and 50+mph. You will see both in the mountains.

    One of my best friends, lives in the mountains of SW Va. He has two recumbents, His drive way is one
    half mile of loose gravel and his house is 700' higher than the street below. He does this drive
    every day to and from work. The winters in SW Va are very similar to New Hampshire. If I had the
    chance, I'd trade places with him in a minute.

    --
    Cletus D. Lee Bacchetta Giro Lightning Voyager http://www.clee.org
    - Bellaire, TX USA -
     
  3. Ron Levine

    Ron Levine Guest

    On Sun, 8 Jun 2003 22:08:14 -0500, Cletus D. Lee <[email protected]> wrote:

    >In article <[email protected]>,=20
    >[email protected] says...
    >> I am considering becoming a 'bent' owner BUT I live in the hilly mountainous State of New
    >> Hampshire. There are several very looong =
    hills
    >> with 7 degree or more grades on some of my favorite loops. My =
    question
    >> is, would a recumbent be practical for this kind of terrain? Thank You. Danielle
    >
    >It would depend on what your want out of the bike. If you do no mind=20 being a little slower up
    >the hills with an increase in overall=20 performance, then yes. =20

    Again, if you live in very hilly terrain, as I do (and as Cletus does not), then the greater speed
    you can get with the bent on the flats and the not-too-curvy descents will NOT make up for the
    penalty in climbing. In hilly terrain, climbing speed dominates average speed. Even if your
    descending speed were infinite, your average speed could be at most twice your climbing speed. =20

    >If you travel with the fast DF crowd, you may =20 not enjoy the experience and if it is
    >important for you to stay with=20 your DF friends, then you probably should stick with a bike
    >'like=20 theirs'.
    >

    Exactly. That is one of the two main reasons I went back to riding an upright on weekend club rides
    after a year and a half of riding my 'bent exclusively.

    >If you decide on a recumbent, then you will need to improve the=20 gearing. An 18" to 21" low gear
    >would be prefered. You can also use a=20 top gear that exceeds 115" You will need to get
    >comfortable with 3mph=20 and 50+mph. You will see both in the mountains.
    >

    Indeed, that is about the gearing range I have on my bent. Climbing at 3 mph is not uncommon, and
    requires developing a lot of steering skill, especially on an LWB. On hills that I can climb no
    faster than
    3.5 mph on my bent, I climb at 5 mph on my lightweight upright. 50 mph is possible only on very
    straight descents, not very common in the mountains.=20

    Ron
     
  4. g19glock1

    g19glock1 New Member

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    Yeah, what the others said, however I add get the bent and keep the DF for those time that riding with the group is important.

    The bent will let you enjoy a pleasure ride even tho you have to spin up the grades. Laid back and riding is very enjoyable.

    Good luck with your decision and I personally hope that you "GET BENT!"

    :D
     
  5. Ron Levine <[email protected]> wrote in news:[email protected]:

    > On Sun, 8 Jun 2003 22:08:14 -0500, Cletus D. Lee <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>In article <[email protected]>,
    >>[email protected] says...
    >>> I am considering becoming a 'bent' owner BUT I live in the hilly mountainous State of New
    >>> Hampshire. There are several very looong
    > hills
    >>> with 7 degree or more grades on some of my favorite loops. My
    > question
    >>> is, would a recumbent be practical for this kind of terrain? Thank You. Danielle
    >>
    >>It would depend on what your want out of the bike. If you do no mind being a little slower up the
    >>hills with an increase in overall performance, then yes.
    >
    > Again, if you live in very hilly terrain, as I do (and as Cletus does not), then the greater speed
    > you can get with the bent on the flats and the not-too-curvy descents will NOT make up for the
    > penalty in climbing. In hilly terrain, climbing speed dominates average speed. Even if your
    > descending speed were infinite, your average speed could be at most twice your climbing speed.

    Could you explain this? I think you'll turn the entire field of mathmatics on its head if you can
    show a sound reasoning for your averaging above. If you manage 4 mph uphill, and 20 mph downhill,
    then your average will be (4+20)/2=12 mph, far more than "twice your climbing speed". In fact, the
    only way that your average will be twice your climbing speed is if your downhill speed is three
    times your climbing speed.

    -Bill Hamilton
     
  6. Cbb

    Cbb Guest

    Did you guys read Douglas's message? He is riding in Florida with small hills where he drops a
    couple of miles an hour but his firends are able to maintain thier speed. This is not the serious
    hill climbs that everyone else seems to be talking about.

    Doug, Spin, you can't stand on the pedals like your upright friends so you have to gear down
    slighlty and bring you cadence up to allow you to put more power into the climb. What kind of
    recumbent are you riding? Many of the more common recumbents are 10+ lbs heavier than most uprights
    which will make it harder to climb with them. Also if they are pulling away on a long flat stretch
    then I'm guessing you don't have one of the more aerodynamic bikes. If you like riding with uprights
    the most compatible bikes are the dual 26" high racers like the Strada, Saber and Volae Team. These
    bikes are lighter to improve climbing, more aero to allow you to catch your friends on the flats and
    high enough to allow you to fit in a pace line. On designs like a Vrex or an unfaired Toureasy your
    weight and aerodynamics will make it more difficult to keep with your friends. If you don't want to
    fit in to a pace line but want to keep pace then I find that lowracers are very fast on flat to
    rolling terrain. I hope these suggestions help Craig
     
  7. Baronn1

    Baronn1 Guest

    You are oversiimplifying the math. I don't know the exact algorithm, but it's closer to a function
    of the length of time spent travelling at any given speed, not a simple average of the high and
    low speed...

    "Bill Hamilton" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Ron Levine <[email protected]> wrote in news:[email protected]:
    >
    > > On Sun, 8 Jun 2003 22:08:14 -0500, Cletus D. Lee <[email protected]> wrote:
    > >
    > >>In article <[email protected]>, [email protected]
    > >>says...
    > >>> I am considering becoming a 'bent' owner BUT I live in the hilly mountainous State of New
    > >>> Hampshire. There are several very looong
    > > hills
    > >>> with 7 degree or more grades on some of my favorite loops. My
    > > question
    > >>> is, would a recumbent be practical for this kind of terrain? Thank You. Danielle
    > >>
    > >>It would depend on what your want out of the bike. If you do no mind being a little slower up
    > >>the hills with an increase in overall performance, then yes.
    > >
    > > Again, if you live in very hilly terrain, as I do (and as Cletus does not), then the greater
    > > speed you can get with the bent on the flats and the not-too-curvy descents will NOT make up for
    > > the penalty in climbing. In hilly terrain, climbing speed dominates average speed. Even if your
    > > descending speed were infinite, your average speed could be at most twice your climbing speed.
    >
    > Could you explain this? I think you'll turn the entire field of mathmatics on its head if you can
    > show a sound reasoning for your averaging above. If you manage 4 mph uphill, and 20 mph downhill,
    > then your average will be (4+20)/2=12 mph, far more than "twice your climbing speed". In fact, the
    > only way that your average will be twice your climbing speed is if your downhill speed is three
    > times your climbing speed.
    >
    > -Bill Hamilton
     
  8. "Bill Hamilton" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > Could you explain this? I think you'll turn the entire field of mathmatics on its head if you can
    > show a sound reasoning for your averaging above. If you manage 4 mph uphill, and 20 mph downhill,
    > then your average will be (4+20)/2=12 mph, far more than "twice your climbing speed". In fact, the
    > only way that your average will be twice your climbing speed is if your downhill speed is three
    > times your climbing speed.
    Imagine going 4 miles up eq. 1 hour 4 miles down eq. 20/4 = 1/5hour = 12 min.

    1h12m used to go 8 miles - do the math from there.

    Torben
     
  9. Ron Levine

    Ron Levine Guest

    On Mon, 09 Jun 2003 12:16:06 GMT, Bill Hamilton <[email protected]> wrote:

    >Ron Levine <[email protected]> wrote in=20 news:[email protected]:
    >
    >> On Sun, 8 Jun 2003 22:08:14 -0500, Cletus D. Lee <[email protected]> wrote:
    >>=20
    >>>In article =
    <[email protected]>,=20
    >>>[email protected] says...
    >>>> I am considering becoming a 'bent' owner BUT I live in the hilly mountainous State of New
    >>>> Hampshire. There are several very looong=20
    >> hills
    >>>> with 7 degree or more grades on some of my favorite loops. My=20
    >> question
    >>>> is, would a recumbent be practical for this kind of terrain? Thank You. Danielle
    >>>
    >>>It would depend on what your want out of the bike. If you do no mind=20 being a little slower up
    >>>the hills with an increase in overall=20 performance, then yes. =20
    >>=20
    >> Again, if you live in very hilly terrain, as I do (and as Cletus does not), then the greater
    >> speed you can get with the bent on the flats and the not-too-curvy descents will NOT make up
    >> for the penalty in climbing. In hilly terrain, climbing speed dominates average speed. Even if
    >> your descending speed were infinite, your average speed could be at most twice your climbing
    >> speed. =20
    >
    >Could you explain this? I think you'll turn the entire field of=20 mathmatics on its head if you
    >can show a sound reasoning for your=20 averaging above. If you manage 4 mph uphill, and 20 mph
    >downhill, then=20 your average will be (4+20)/2=3D12 mph, far more than "twice your =
    climbing=20
    >speed". In fact, the only way that your average will be twice your=20 climbing speed is if your
    >downhill speed is three times your climbing=20 speed.
    >

    You flunk elementary algebra, my friend, a subject that I spent more years teaching, as a remedial
    subject at the college level, than I care to remember.

    Average speed for a trip is total distance traveled/time for the trip. A round trip will get you
    back to the same elevation that you started. To simplify the problem, suppose that half the distance
    of travel is climbing and half the distance is descending, and that you climb at constant speed and
    descend at constant speed. To use your figures, say climb at 4 mph and descend at 20 mph, and
    suppose you climb for 10 miles and descend for 10 miles. =20

    Then time climbing =3D 10/4 =3D 2.5 hours time descending =3D 10/20 =3D 0.5 hour

    Total time =3D2.5 + 0.5 =3D 3 hours Total distance 20 miles

    Average speed 20/3 =3D 6.67 mph

    Even if your descending speed were infinite, so that you spent no time at all descending, the
    average speed would be 20 miles/2.5 hours =3D 8 mph, twice your climbing speed.

    The moral, for the elementary algebra class, is that, no matter how fast you go, you can't make up
    for lost time.

    =46or cyclists, the moral is that, in hilly terrain, you spend almost
    all your time climbing. The descents, especially on a 'bent, are lots of fun, but the rush is
    over quickly.

    Ron

    =20
     
  10. Torben Scheel wrote:

    > Imagine going 4 miles up eq. 1 hour 4 miles down eq. 20/4 = 1/5hour = 12 min.
    >
    > 1h12m used to go 8 miles - do the math from there.

    Better yet, plug the figures one of those clever online calculator things. Put me into Walter Zorn's
    calculator, for example, for a 500m climb of 5% putting out 210 W:

    Uphill: 2:24 (12.5 km/h) Downhill: 19.9 s (90.3 km/h) Total: 2:43.9 (22 km/h)

    1 km on a level road: 1:27.4 (41.2 km/h).

    I'd probably be even slower on the hill, coz I'm not sure I'm brave / stupid enough to go that fast
    down hills any more...

    Dave Larrington - http://www.legslarry.beerdrinkers.co.uk/
    ===========================================================
    Editor - British Human Power Club Newsletter
    http://www.bhpc.org.uk/
    ===========================================================
     
  11. Cletus Lee

    Cletus Lee Guest

  12. Smitty

    Smitty Guest

    Bikergal, I live in the foothills of the Cascade mountains, which I would guess has even more
    extreme climbs that you have to deal with. My home is in a valley that's about 500 feet above sea
    level, and is surrounded by 4700 foot mountains, it's uphill in every direction. I have a BikeE RX
    (not considered a great hill climbing 'bent), but it does just fine on 6 to 8 percent grades. Is
    it slower going uphill than an upright? Yes, it is, but only marginally, and to rollout a silly
    term that cyclists like to use, I believe the "perceived exertion" climbing on a 'bent is lower
    than on a wedgie.

    The payoff, of course, is the downhill. Last Friday, I blew past a roadie on a steep downhill, even
    though the guy was totally laid out on his aerobars.

    Don't buy a 'bent specifically for climbing: buy one because they are a blast to ride.

    [email protected] (Mich) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > I am considering becoming a 'bent' owner BUT I live in the hilly mountainous State of New
    > Hampshire. There are several very looong hills with 7 degree or more grades on some of my favorite
    > loops. My question is, would a recumbent be practical for this kind of terrain? Thank You.
    > Danielle
     
  13. Cletus Lee

    Cletus Lee Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    >
    > Don't buy a 'bent specifically for climbing: buy one because they are a blast to ride.
    >
    >
    However as you point out, Some are better than others. You make note of the poorer climbing ability
    of the Bike E. I would suggest that the bent shopper look for a bent that does climb well and all
    the other positives will be there. For a bent that climbs, I would look at the higher BB bents like
    the Big wheel Bacchettas, Lightning P-38 and even my Bacchetta Giro. All climb better than a Bike E
    or LWB bent.
    --

    Cletus D. Lee Bacchetta Giro Lightning Voyager http://www.clee.org
    - Bellaire, TX USA -
     
  14. [email protected] (cbb) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    >
    If you like riding with
    > uprights the most compatible bikes are the dual 26" high racers like the Strada, Saber and Volae
    > Team. These bikes are lighter to improve climbing, more aero to allow you to catch your friends on
    > the flats and high enough to allow you to fit in a pace line. On designs like a Vrex or an
    > unfaired Toureasy your weight and aerodynamics will make it more difficult to keep with your
    > friends.

    Actually if you want to mix it up with fast DF riders the most compatible bike will be a body socked
    LWB. I agree that an unfaired anything will be hard pressed to stay with good DF riders. In the
    Santa Cruz there are a number of fast training rides for DF racers that include some pretty decent
    hills not what you might think would be good for recumbents, but I have torched these guys so much
    now that they hate to see me show up on my R-bike. I honestly can't think of another R-bike that I
    could do that on. Freddy
     
  15. Cletus Lee

    Cletus Lee Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    >
    > >It would depend on what your want out of the bike. If you do no mind being a little slower up the
    > >hills with an increase in overall performance, then yes.
    >
    > Again, if you live in very hilly terrain, as I do (and as Cletus does not), then the greater speed
    > you can get with the bent on the flats and the not-too-curvy descents will NOT make up for the
    > penalty in climbing. In hilly terrain, climbing speed dominates average speed. Even if your
    > descending speed were infinite, your average speed could be at most twice your climbing speed.

    Please do not confuse 'Average speed' with performance. There is another thread discussing the
    merits of and what constitutes average speed.

    I do not consider slower hill climbing a penalty. The benefits of recumbents far exceed any
    shortcomings. And as for my qualifications, I am an admitted flatlander. Not by choice. And I am not
    afraid of tackling any hill. I take my mountains in small doses. If I had the daily opportunity to
    ride in the mountains, I would be a stronger,better hill climber and I still would do it on a
    recumbent.

    Cletus D. Lee Bacchetta Giro Lightning Voyager http://www.clee.org
    - Bellaire, TX USA -
     
  16. Some bikes are better then other which is why I do so much testing, with proper test equipment.
    However my bias for recumbents prevents any testing on an upright. Two things that have come up in
    testing is: (1) weight, every ounce counts, especially on climbs and (2) aerodynamics, the rider
    is pushing air even at 3 mph. All my aero testing has pointed towards: longer is better, much the
    same as a rowing scull is faster then a canoe. There are some nice light weight LWB's that are
    very good climbers.

    Cletus Lee wrote:

    > In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    > >
    > > Don't buy a 'bent specifically for climbing: buy one because they are a blast to ride.
    > >
    > >
    > However as you point out, Some are better than others. You make note of the poorer climbing
    > ability of the Bike E. I would suggest that the bent shopper look for a bent that does climb well
    > and all the other positives will be there. For a bent that climbs, I would look at the higher BB
    > bents like the Big wheel Bacchettas, Lightning P-38 and even my Bacchetta Giro. All climb better
    > than a Bike E or LWB bent.
    > --
    >
    > Cletus D. Lee Bacchetta Giro Lightning Voyager http://www.clee.org
    > - Bellaire, TX USA -

    -----= Posted via Newsfeeds.Com, Uncensored Usenet News =----- http://www.newsfeeds.com - The #1
    Newsgroup Service in the World! -----== Over 80,000 Newsgroups - 16 Different Servers! =-----
     
  17. Ron Levine

    Ron Levine Guest

    On Mon, 9 Jun 2003 13:47:27 -0500, Cletus Lee <[email protected]> wrote:

    >
    >I do not consider slower hill climbing a penalty. The benefits of recumbents far exceed any
    >shortcomings.

    The benefits of riding recumbents are great. The benefits of riding uprights are also great, and
    different. One of the shortcomings of riding recumbents that I find is that it does not provide
    quite all the benefits of riding my upright road bike--specifically, it does not provide the same
    quality of exercise, in particularl, a modicum of upper body exercise and a variety of exercise of
    lower body muscle groups.

    Some people think that riding upright bikes does not provide significant upper body exercise. My
    experience is different. In a year and a half of riding recumbents exclusively, (and not doing any
    other exercise consistently) I experienced a definite reduction of upper body muscle mass. Of
    course, you can do lots of different kinds of exercise if you have the time. Rowing is the the best
    all-round exericse I've done (on the water with a sliding-seat rig, but not on a machine in a gym),
    but, as a daily routine, it is just not as convenient as riding a bike out my front door. The
    differences in the quality of the exercise is the other of the two main reasons I've gone back to
    riding my upright a lot of the time after riding the 'bent exclusively for a year and a half.

    Further, I find that I enjoy working in all the different positions possible on an upright but
    impossible on a recumbent, such as dancing on the pedals, or riding without hands.

    I ride and enjoy both kinds of bikes--usually, the recumbent during the week for commuting and the
    upright for club rides on weekends. I shall probably use the recumbent for most self-contained
    touring, although I took my upright for a recent self-contained tour in Europe simply because the
    bike transport issues were much simpler to deal with.

    The greatest benefit of recumbents vis-a-vis uprights is superior comfort. Many people who ride
    recumbents do so because they experience too much discomfort on uprights, enough to make riding them
    unpleasant or even impossible.. I certainly find my recumbent more comfortable for very long rides
    than my upright, but, for me, the discomforts of the upright are not fatal, and the recumbent is not
    enirely without discomforts of its own.

    Ron
     
  18. Cletus Lee

    Cletus Lee Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, "S. Delaire \"Rotatorrecumbent\""
    <[email protected]> says...
    > . All my aero testing has pointed towards: longer is better, much the same as a rowing scull is
    > faster then a canoe. There are some nice light weight LWB's that are very good climbers.
    >
    Yes your Pursuit and the RANS V² may fall into that category.
    --

    Cletus D. Lee Bacchetta Giro Lightning Voyager http://www.clee.org
    - Bellaire, TX USA -
     
  19. YMMV ... but ... my Ti Rush surprised me. After owning a P-38 which climbed extremely well ... I
    discovered that the Rush climbs OK. It is not a P-38 on hills but it's far from a slug. On flats the
    Ti Rush with a fairing is a close match with an unfaired P-38.

    --
    Gator Bob Siegel EasyRacers Ti Rush "Cletus Lee" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > In article <[email protected]>, "S. Delaire
    \"Rotatorrecumbent\""
    > <[email protected]> says...
    > > . All my aero testing has pointed towards: longer is better, much the same as a rowing scull is
    > > faster
    then a canoe.
    > > There are some nice light weight LWB's that are very good climbers.
    > >
    > Yes your Pursuit and the RANS V² may fall into that category.
    > --
    >
    > Cletus D. Lee Bacchetta Giro Lightning Voyager http://www.clee.org
    > - Bellaire, TX USA -
     
  20. Bobinator

    Bobinator Guest

    Danielle,

    With all of the excitement about lowracers, highracers, etc., the one bike that still outclimbs them
    all is the Lightning P-38. I have a Lightning Phantom II (same component package as the base P-38)
    and it climbs well also. In a recent ride with a friend on a body-socked Ti-Rush, I smoked him on
    every climb. Of course, he smoked me going down.

    Even with that, it still depends on the engine. I have outclimbed a couple of Litespeeds going
    uphill. Is my Phantom a better climber than a sub-20 lb Litespeed? I doubt it. Was I better than the
    out of shape guy on it? Yes. Don't forget your engine. You will need to build up your hill climbing
    legs. With practice, you will be fast enough.

    Bob

    [email protected] (Mich) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > I am considering becoming a 'bent' owner BUT I live in the hilly mountainous State of New
    > Hampshire. There are several very looong hills with 7 degree or more grades on some of my favorite
    > loops. My question is, would a recumbent be practical for this kind of terrain? Thank You.
    > Danielle
     
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