Recumbant cycle

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by davebee, Jan 21, 2004.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. davebee

    davebee New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2004
    Messages:
    442
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got any experience of riding these umm contraptions?
     
    Tags:


  2. Danny Colyer

    Danny Colyer Guest

    davebee wrote:
    > I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    > they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    > any experience of riding these umm contraptions?

    Yes: http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/recumbents/

    (Cue also Peter Clinch, Guy Chapman, JohnB, Dave Larrington, is Andy Welch still around?, and all
    the others)

    --
    Danny Colyer (the UK company has been laughed out of my reply address)
    http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/danny/
    "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." - Thomas Paine
     
  3. In news:[email protected],
    davebee <[email protected]> typed:
    > I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    > they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    > any experience of riding these umm contraptions?

    No. No-one ever mentions them round here. Here's more the kind of place you'd come if you want
    advice on which saddle's most comfortable.
     
  4. davebee wrote:

    > I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    > they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    > any experience of riding these umm contraptions?

    Luke, I am your father.
     
  5. Redshift

    Redshift Guest

    On Wed, 21 Jan 2004 19:53:05 +0000, davebee wrote:

    > I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    > they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    > any experience of riding these umm contraptions?

    Based on your "tossers..." thread, it seems you ride in Manchester. Keep your eyes peeled then, as I
    commute to work in the centre of the city on my recumbent trike. If you're really interested, have a
    look at AVD in Altrincham, where the Windcheetah is made: http://www.windcheetah.co.uk/

    Events such as Cyclefest at Lancaster (August) usually attract a wide variety of recumbents, and are
    a good place to see the different types all together. They're are not yet common, although they've
    been around for a long time. Like most revelations, those converted are often zealous, and it's
    often referred to as the Dark Side...

    L
    :)

    --
    http://www.redshift.uklinux.net/ Windcheetah No.176 Linux Counter No. 275325 *Remove Spamcatcher and
    x for email reply
     
  6. Simon Brooke

    Simon Brooke Guest

    davebee <[email protected]> writes:

    > I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    > they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    > any experience of riding these umm contraptions?

    Several regulars of this group are dedicated bent riders and eager to proselytise. I'm sure there
    will be a dozen along in a minute.

    I'v only ridden one once, but they are definitely huge fun and probably the right choice if you're
    riding more than a few hundred yards on the road. Sooner or later I shall buy one.

    --
    [email protected] (Simon Brooke) http://www.jasmine.org.uk/~simon/ Windows 95: You, you, you! You
    make a grown man cry...
    M. Jagger/K. Richards
     
  7. >I'v only ridden one once, but they are definitely huge fun and probably the right choice if you're
    >riding more than a few hundred yards on the road. Sooner or later I shall buy one.

    I second that.

    Indeed, I feel a plan emerging in the dim recesses of my twisted psyche. Chateau Simmons, residence
    of The Unift Family is having a new kitchen fitted soon. During the process of making purchase of
    said kitchen new flooring etc, vernon has remarked at how frugal I am being in choice and cost of
    items. He has been wondering what I intend to do with all the money I am saving him. I perhaps
    should be suggesting a nice shiny new Trice would be a suitable reward
    :-D

    Cheers, helen s

    --This is an invalid email address to avoid spam-- to get correct one remove dependency on fame &
    fortune h*$el*$$e**nd***$o$ts***i*$*$m**m$$o*n**[email protected]$*$a$$o**l.c**$*$om$$
     
  8. Pete Whelan

    Pete Whelan Guest

    Simon Brooke wrote:
    > davebee <[email protected]> writes:
    >
    >
    >>I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    >>they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    >>any experience of riding these umm contraptions?
    >
    >
    > Several regulars of this group are dedicated bent riders and eager to proselytise. I'm sure there
    > will be a dozen along in a minute.
    >
    > I'v only ridden one once, but they are definitely huge fun and probably the right choice if you're
    > riding more than a few hundred yards on the road. Sooner or later I shall buy one.
    >

    After getting a Trice at the end of November 03, to aid my recovery froma a broken shoulder, I think
    they are great fun to ride, especially in icy conditions. Very comfortable and nippy.

    --
    Pete

    interchange 12 for 21 to reply
     
  9. In article <[email protected]>, davebee <usenet-
    [email protected]> writes
    >I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    >they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    >any experience of riding these umm contraptions?

    Yeah, heres what I've found... Very quick downhill and on the flat, very slow uphill. Harder to fit
    on your roof-rack/in the car and a lot of trains will not take them. Comparatively comfortable (I
    get pins and needles in arms/shoulders after a while on a 'normal bike') and its nice to be looking
    up and around. Not good for going out pootling with friends/wife as you can't turn your head around
    to chat as easily!

    You also get a lot of people staring, some people like that, some dont (personally I dont -
    especially when doing 2mph up hill). Because you look odd, cars generally give you a wide berth
    on the road.

    I dont want to promote anyone in particular, but I visited a recumbent chappy at a place near Ely
    and for a small fee you get to ride various bents and trikes. Trikes really were fantastic fun!

    Cheers

    John Openshaw

    --
    John Openshaw
     
  10. Look a bit daft?

    Get 'im, lads!

    ;-)

    P.S. Whatever happened to Disgruntled Goat?

    --

    Dave Larrington - http://www.legslarry.beerdrinkers.co.uk/
    ===========================================================
    Editor - British Human Power Club Newsletter
    http://www.bhpc.org.uk/
    ===========================================================
     
  11. On Wed, 21 Jan 2004 19:53:05 GMT, davebee
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    >they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    >any experience of riding these umm contraptions?

    I might have to get one. Although my wife is not yet convinced. She is of the opinion that coming
    through the town centre around pub closing time would result in a good kicking.

    And that's before I've let on about the price.
     
  12. Peter Clinch

    Peter Clinch Guest

    John Openshaw wrote:

    > Yeah, heres what I've found... Very quick downhill and on the flat, very slow uphill.

    A lot of that depends on the actual design. On mine (an HPVelotechnik Streetmachine GT) I'm slower
    up a hill than on my old upright tourer or MTB, but that isn't necessarily slow in an absolute
    sense. On a local CTC ride 12 of us took on a nasty hill up from Balmerino. 3 people got off and
    walked, I left 9th and arrived 3rd, 1st and 2nd had good head starts on me. Afterwards the ride
    organiser said she'd been asked by a couple of folks on that trip if 'bents were really easier to
    ride up hills! Also note that slow is not quite the same thing as "difficult": you generally just
    spin low gears and trundle up.

    Quick on the flat and downhill will also depend on the design. Something like the HPVel Spirit
    isn't, to be honest, but OTOH it isn't *meant* to be (it's meant to be an easy to ride, practical
    and comfortable urban utility bike, and AFAICT it succeeds). But any 'bent which is remotely
    performance oriented is better than an equivalent upright into the wind and should be a real
    screamer down hills.

    > Harder to fit on your roof-rack/in the car and a lot of trains will not take them.

    Yes.

    > Comparatively comfortable (I get pins and needles in arms/shoulders after a while on a 'normal
    > bike') and its nice to be looking up and around.

    "comparatively" is about an order of magnitude IME. For short trips most bikes are comfortable
    *enough* and if it's short it doesn't matter that much. But with several hours, why would you take a
    less rather than more comfortable option, if you had it?

    > Not good for going out pootling with friends/wife as you can't turn your head around to chat
    > as easily!

    Mileage varies: I use mine for exactly this and it's never been a problem. More radical designs like
    lowracers might not be quite so sociable, mind.

    > You also get a lot of people staring

    And asking questions. You'll get a lot of people laughing at you, and a lot of people thinking
    you're the coolest thing on wheels. They are very ostentatious, and I wouldn't recommend them to
    anyone who is genuinely uncomfortable standing well out from the crowd.

    > I dont want to promote anyone in particular, but I visited a recumbent chappy at a place near Ely
    > and for a small fee you get to ride various bents and trikes. Trikes really were fantastic fun!

    Sounds like D-Tek. The other Usual Suspects are Kinetics in Glasgow, Futurecycles in Surrey, London
    Recumbents and Bikefix in London.

    As suggested by the first paragraph there are recumbents and recumbents, with a much wider set of
    designs than typically found in the upright world. If you're trying 'bents out make sure the ones
    you look at are relevant to your intended use. Mine is designed as a tourer, it wouldn't make any
    sort of race bike, for example (compare to something like a Super Galaxy upright tourer, where if
    you take the 'guards and racks off and pop on a different set of back cogs and tyres you'd have
    something not too far off a performance machine).

    Pete.
    --
    Peter Clinch University of Dundee Tel 44 1382 660111 ext. 33637 Medical Physics, Ninewells Hospital
    Fax 44 1382 640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK net [email protected]
    http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
     
  13. Frobnitz

    Frobnitz Guest

    "davebee" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    > they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else got
    > any experience of riding these umm contraptions?

    I ordered mine a short while ago, and I hope it will be delivered soon - I had a bit of a bump (me,
    a car, a wide road - guess which part he chose to drive on) which has left me with bolts in my
    wrists which makes an upright very uncomfortable after more than 10 minutes or so - for the last 5
    months I've done almost no leisure cycling, and even my commute (about 2.5miles) sometimes leaves me
    needing codeine.

    I've chosen a Streetmachine as it seemed to be aimed more at the sort of cycling I like - leisurely
    touring, not absolute speed, the posters on this group who have one rave about it - and, I'll be
    honest - I think it looks the coolest and most relaxed thing on two wheels. I took one for a test
    ride, and I would agree with the awesome fun, and add in unbelievably comfortable, but I'll add a
    caveat - I'm going to have to spend some time on quiet streets learning how to use it - the reflexes
    and attitudes used on an upright don't transfer to all recumbents - e.g. you /don't/ grip the
    handlebars and pull when going up hill, unless you enjoy tacking randomly across roads. Starting was
    also entertaining - if you have flat pedals, then you have to get some speed from the initial push
    on the pedal to allow you to get your other foot onto the pedals - I've promised myself I will learn
    to do this before I put clipless pedals on, which should make things easier. Also, you use your
    muscles in a different way when cycling a recumbent, and I found that I was a lot more tired after a
    short ride than I would have been on my upright - it takes a while for you to adjust to the new
    techniques. After this ride though, I had no discomfort from my wrists.

    If I can prise myself off the bike after I get it, I'll try and write a short piece on my
    experiences - I'm starting from scratch, the only time I have had on a 'bent is the half hour or so
    of my test ride.

    Eddie Dubourg
     
  14. On Thu, 22 Jan 2004 12:27:26 -0000, "Frobnitz"
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >"davebee" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    >news:[email protected]...
    >> I have just come accross these from browsing through the web. Although they might look a bit daft
    >> they look awesome fun to ride and much quicker and easier than a normal bike. Has anybody else
    >> got any experience of riding these umm contraptions?
    >
    >I ordered mine a short while ago, and I hope it will be delivered soon - I had a bit of a bump (me,
    >a car, a wide road - guess which part he chose to drive on) which has left me with bolts in my
    >wrists which makes an upright very uncomfortable after more than 10 minutes or so - for the last 5
    >months I've done almost no leisure cycling, and even my commute (about 2.5miles) sometimes leaves
    >me needing codeine.

    It's a similar story that is causing me to look at recumbents. I'm still in the stage where a good
    afternoon on the sofa leaves me needing co-something (that I can't remember the name is worrying;
    one of the side-effects is "confusion").

    As soon as I'm able I shall be off to look a few different types; I am rather keen on the idea of a
    trike. It's not a subject I really know much about beyond the fact that there isn't much need for
    strong arms.
     
  15. Peter Clinch

    Peter Clinch Guest

    Frobnitz wrote:

    > comfortable, but I'll add a caveat - I'm going to have to spend some time on quiet streets
    > learning how to use it

    This is quite true, though the amount of acclimatisation will depend to an extent on the design.
    The Streetmachine isn't, IME, a machine to get straight into traffic on, while the Spirit is just
    about get on and off you go. Having said that, something like the Streetmachine doesn't need *that*
    long. Roos was up to mixing with traffic on the main roads on mine with no previous 'bent
    experience, plus using clipless pedals for the first time ever in my too big for her SD60 sandals,
    after just a few rides.

    Pete.
    --
    Peter Clinch University of Dundee Tel 44 1382 660111 ext. 33637 Medical Physics, Ninewells Hospital
    Fax 44 1382 640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK net [email protected]
    http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
     
  16. Frobnitz

    Frobnitz Guest

    "[Not Responding]" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > It's a similar story that is causing me to look at recumbents. I'm still in the stage where a good
    > afternoon on the sofa leaves me needing co-something (that I can't remember the name is worrying;
    > one of the side-effects is "confusion").

    Your problems are much worse than mine, except I don't mind the confusion, it's the constipation
    that really bothers me (too much information, I know..)

    > As soon as I'm able I shall be off to look a few different types; I am rather keen on the idea of
    > a trike. It's not a subject I really know much about beyond the fact that there isn't much need
    > for strong arms.

    I'm sticking to two-wheels until 1) I've paid of the Streetmachine, and 2) I move to a bigger house
    to house my increasing stable of bikes^w cycles - I may look again after this.

    E
     
  17. Peter Clinch

    Peter Clinch Guest

    [Not Responding] wrote:

    > As soon as I'm able I shall be off to look a few different types; I am rather keen on the idea of
    > a trike. It's not a subject I really know much about beyond the fact that there isn't much need
    > for strong arms.

    Velovision issue 9 has a buyer's guide section on 'bent trikes, which may well be worth a look. VV
    is a fab magazine, and though it's expensive on a page/pennies basis it's easily my favourite
    cycling mag of all those I've seen. More at http://www.velovision.co.uk/

    Pete.
    --
    Peter Clinch University of Dundee Tel 44 1382 660111 ext. 33637 Medical Physics, Ninewells Hospital
    Fax 44 1382 640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK net [email protected]
    http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/
     
  18. Danny Colyer

    Danny Colyer Guest

    Peter Clinch wrote:
    > As suggested by the first paragraph there are recumbents and recumbents, with a much wider set of
    > designs than typically found in the upright world.

    Someone should probably post the recumbent FAQ. I think I'll do it: http://www.ihpva.org/FAQ/

    Q. What IS that thing ?!?

    R. Well, it's called a 'recumbent' bicycle. The word recumbent refers to the seated position; many
    enthusiasts have also taken to calling them 'bents'. They usually have two wheels although some
    have three. They are most often powered by pedaling with your legs, but some bents are hand
    powered, some are both hand and foot powered.

    S. Are they comfortable?

    T. They are very comfortable. Recumbents seats are larger and you actually sit in the seat. You
    aren't perched on top of a narrow saddle which can tend to cause numbness and chafing. The
    handlebars are either above the seat at shoulder level, or below the seat at a position where
    your arms hang down naturally. This combination creates a comfortable ride making long distance
    riding free from neck strain, saddle sores, and wrist pain.

    U. Are they difficult to ride?

    V. No. It may take you a little time to get used to the feel and handling of the bike. There are
    variations in handling just as there are in uprights- some are fast, twitchy racing models and
    others are smooth, stable touring models. Be forewarned though, recumbents use different muscles,
    so even if you are a very fit upright rider, you will experience difficulty climbing hills until
    you develop the new muscle groups.

    W. Do they "do" hills?

    X. Yes, they do "do" hills. Some people think that because you can't stand on the pedals, that you
    can't ride up hills. Recumbents do tend to be slower going up hills, but as long as you keep
    pedaling the bike keeps moving. Depending on how steep a hill you're climbing, you may want a low
    granny gear ( and a good set of lungs), which will enable you to spin your way to the top.
    Usually you can keep up with some of the upright riders, and if any time was lost climbing, you
    will make up for it on the downhills and flat ground.

    Y. Are they faster?

    Z. Well, this is very controversial. In the IHPVA sanctioned events, all the land speed records are
    held by recumbent or semi-recumbent designs. The real question you are asking is, will you be
    faster on a recumbent?

    The answer is, "maybe". There are so many factors involved; how long you've been riding, how
    long you've trained on the recumbent, style and weight of the bike, topography - hilly,
    mountainous, flat.

    Since the biggest factor limiting speed is aerodynamic drag, if you want to go really fast, use
    a recumbent with a well-designed fairing or a full body. In this case, the answer is YES, they
    are faster.

    Z. Are recumbents hard to see?

    Z. Since recumbents are relatively uncommon, they are "noticed"; "visible" is another question. You
    do sit lower than on a traditional diamond frame bike. Depending on which recumbent you own, you
    may want to make yourself a little more visible. You can do that by adding a flag to your bike
    on an extended rod (Burley style), and also by wearing a bright helmet or jacket/vest. To be
    fair to car drivers, whose attention and concentration are on everything except their driving, I
    would recommend doing something to get their attention especially if you're riding on heavily
    used roads.

    Z. How do you steer it?

    Z. Generally, recumbents have either 'above seat steering' (ASS), or 'under seat steering' (USS). On
    the above seat steering bents, the handlebars are located at about shoulder height giving them
    the "chopper" look. On the under seat steering bikes, they are located just beneath the seat. If
    you are sitting on a chair right now, let your hands hang loosely at your side; this is where
    your handlebars would be.

    Above seat steering looks more conventional and is therefore sometimes favored by beginners; but USS
    bents are really no more difficult to control.
    Z. Have recumbents been around a while or are they a recent invention?

    Z. Recumbents have been around since the mid 1800's with the Macmillan Velocipede and the Challand
    Recumbent.

    In 1933 Charles Mochet built a supine recumbent named the "Velocar". Between the years of 1933 and
    1938 pro racer Francois Faure, while riding the Velocar, set several speed records for both the mile
    and kilometer. In Paris on July 7, 1933, Francis Faure broke the 20 year-old hour record of 44.247
    km. by going 45.055 km.

    Unfortunately Faure's hour record created a controversy amongst the Union Cycliste Internationale
    (U.C.I.), the governing body for bicycle races. The controversy was based on whether the Velocar was
    a bicycle and whether the time records were legal. In February 1934, the U.C.I. decided against
    Faure's record and banned all recumbents and aerodynamic devices from racing.

    That is the reason why recumbents have not gained popularity in the racing scene, and why they have
    not been mass produced by bike manufacturers. For over a century since the introduction of the
    Rover Safety Cycle, built in England in 1884, the design of the basic diamond frame bicycle has
    hardly changed.

    Z. What are the different styles of recumbents?

    Z. The most noticable difference between the different styles is the length of the bike. There are
    long wheel base (lwb), short wheel base (swb), and compact long wheel base bikes (clwb).

    A long wheelbase bike (LWB) is 65" - 71". Their ride is quite smooth, comfortable, fast and stable
    but due to their length, low speed maneuverability can be a bit tricky on busy streets or on narrow
    paths. Examples: Ryan, Linear, Infinity.

    A short wheelbase bike (SWB) is 33" - 45". Their front wheel is underneath or a little ahead of the
    riders knees, with the crankset mounted on a boom. They have quick handling, are easy to maneuver,
    and they are more compact, making it easier to transport and stow than a lwb. Examples: Lightning
    P-38, Presto.

    A compact long wheelbase bike (CLWB) is 46" - 64". These bikes are the easiest bikes to learn on.
    They are responsive, very stable, and with a higher seat- they are more visible, making great
    commuters. Examples: BikeE, ReBike.

    Z. I'm still slow! How long does it take before I'm up to speed?

    Z. Since it takes time to develop new leg muscles it will depend on how often and the amount of time
    you spend on your trusty steed. For me, it took about two weeks commuting on it 20 miles a day.
    For others it may take up to a month or it may take less than two weeks. It all depends on your
    physical fitness and the how hard you choose to ride. By all means... don't give up !!

    Z. How much do they cost?

    Z. Recumbents start at around $350 and can go as high as you want to pay. Because of their low
    production volumes, a recumbent tends to be more expensive than a mass-produced upright bike. So
    when comparing prices, bear in mind you're buying a custom or very low production bike. Expect to
    pay $800 or more for a high quality bike. This price range will give you very good components, a
    good frame and less weight.

    --
    Danny Colyer (the UK company has been laughed out of my reply address)
    http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/danny/
    "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." - Thomas Paine
     
  19. Danny Colyer

    Danny Colyer Guest

    [Not Responding] wrote:
    > It's a similar story that is causing me to look at recumbents. I'm still in the stage where a good
    > afternoon on the sofa leaves me needing co-something

    You need one of these: http://www.bikeforest.com/cb/couchintro.html

    --
    Danny Colyer (the UK company has been laughed out of my reply address)
    http://www.speedy5.freeserve.co.uk/danny/
    "He who dares not offend cannot be honest." - Thomas Paine
     
  20. Simonb

    Simonb Guest

    Danny Colyer wrote:

    > $350 <--Huh?! $800 <--Uh??!!

    $imon
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
Loading...