Recumbent - Buying First Bent....HELP!
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I'm about to make the switch from a DF to a bent due to back/neck problems. I have ridden a DF for ever and year after year the pain is worse. If I'm going to continue to ride as much as I would like, a change has to be made. I ride about 150-200 miles/week mainly for exercise, on mainly flat rural/suburban paved roads. I maintain about 15-18 MPH on a Trek 2100 Carbon. I'm 6'3" and weigh about 215 lbs. X-seam is about 46".
I would like to get into a bent that I can COMFORTABLY ride for these distances at this pace. I'm considering the LWB bikes with a low BB and those with a Hi BB.
Easyracer Tour Easy
RANS Velocity 2 (V2)
How different in handling are these bikes, and which type will fill my needs better?
Any other general comments that will help will be appreciated. Money, of course, is an issue, but not the greatest one. I want a reliable bike that will hold up.
I live in the SLC area and recumbent dealers are few. Test riding some of these is not an option and I may have to buy online. If I was to buy today, I would go with the RANS V2.
01-24-06, 04:29 PM
I have a Sun EZ-Sport which is close to the tour easy. I ride a flat trail following a creek to the edge of San Francisco bay, doing 1800 miles in '05. I love this bike because its upright seating is so comfortable; no more neck, back or shoulder pain. I did have the handlebars cut and re-welded to match my wrist angle and covered the hand grips with foam pipe insulation. This eliminated the wrist pain. The seat (same as tour easy) got rid of prostate/crotch pain.Now I just ride for the workout and never have any pain after a ride. What a difference from DF bikes.
The stratus and tour easy will both do you well. The main difference is the stratus' BB is higher in relation to the seat surface. Thus the ride posture is more reclined. It's a matter of personal preference so try them both. You won't regret the change. bk
01-24-06, 05:32 PM
Consider a Worksman PAV semi recumbent. I just
bought one finding the easy chair seating height
to be swell for comfort. Walk over, sit down,
swivel around and pedal. Easy and comfy.
The really great part is for what you get is the
price is dirt cheap.
I looked at the regular recuments but found all to be
to low.....way , way to low for me.
01-24-06, 05:59 PM
You may be correct that you will have trouble finding a bike shop for a test ride, but that doesn't mean you should write off the possibility. Get on the forums for the various bikes and find some owners in your area that might allow you a test ride.I suggest starting in the following places:
Bacchetta: http://bacchettabikes.com/forum2/loginflat.asp & subscribe
yahoo groups seems to have an active group named Bacchetta_Bikes (see RANS directions)
RANS: http://www.groups.yahoo.com, search for RANSbike & subscribe
Utahrecumbentriders: another Yahoo group.
Sorry I couldn't find a specific Burley resource.
If you like to ride fast, go with the Bacchetta.
So you're set on the LWB? If you do go out test riding recumbents, be sure to try some SWB 'bents as well. What you think you want, and what actually works for you, are sometimes two different things.
Thanks for the replies. I found a dealer, Recumbents of Utah, who sells the complete RANS line as well as Cycle Genius. Talked with the owner today and scheduled a test ride session. He has LWB and SWB models available plus a V2, so I hope to get a better idea of what will be best.
Have to go to the San Diego area next week (really had to twist my arm to leave Utah in January for SD :) ), I see there are a couple of Bacchetta dealers there, so maybe I can squeeze in time to try one there.
Well I spent a couple of hours yesterday at Recumbents of Utah test riding several bents. Out of those I rode, I liked the RANS V2 the best. I also tried the RANS rocket and tailwind. The SWB rocket was fun and quick, where the tailwind was much more sedate. He also carries Cycle Genius and I tried one of the LWB w/26 rear. It looks very similiar to a Tour Easy. It was very easy to ride but I felt like I was steering a semi. The V2 seemed like the best combination of comfort and performance. I also rode a Wiz Wheelz Tour trike, and really enjoyed it, especially the use of the seperate disk brakes on the two front wheels. I loved the way you could brake one side or the other in the turns. Russ Card, the owner of Recumbents of Utah, uses one of these to commute. I would feel very exposed in traffic being that low even though he had flags on it. I think I will stick to a bent.
Thanks again to those here who strongly recommend test rides and to Russ for having available some bents to ride. My decision will be easier.
I don't know much about recumbents. I've never ridden a SWB or high bb bent. I only bought my first bent a Burley Koosay 1 1/2 years ago because I have had multiple back surgeries and absolutely could not ride an upright. I started riding a few miles per day with a friend, then the bug really bit and I rode more and more, then did a number of rides, up to a 400+ miler last summer. I abolutely love the Koosay. I can't say I prefer it over a number of other bikes because I simply haven't ridden any others. Our LBS has sold very few recumbents in this area. Over the past few months I've upgraded some components and the seat bottom, but otherwise it is stock.
Overall, I have nothing but good to say about my Koosay. Not saying that other recumbents would have been just as good or better, but from a wheelchair to doing 70 miles a day (still haven't done a century) in a year's time, I firmly believe that it has been the single most important therapeutic thing I've tried, and over the years I've tried just about everything. I love my blue Koosay and probably won't ever sell it, even if something new and better comes along. By the way, my wife has an intermittent cervical disk and sometimes steals my Koosay as it doesn't aggravate it at all. She's thinking about a bent, too.
But if you have a LBS that handles several makes and models of bents, go down and try them all. Wring them out well. Get whatever works for you. You'll not regret it.
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