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Old 09-28-13, 07:25 AM   #1
tigat
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The N+1 Solution to Broken Promises, Feeble Excuses

On Tuesday of this week, I traveled to the Trek factory in Waterloo, Wisconsin to test, get fitted upon and ultimately take home with me the bike pictured below. It is a six series Trek Domane frame, with a red liquid crystal paint scheme in matte finish.

It is beautiful.

It has a name painted on the top tube--"Bandit", which is the name my brothers call me when we play golf together, and reflects the fact that my left arm has gone missing at the shoulder and they consider any winnings I receive to be an act of theft.

More significantly, the Bandit represents almost a year of research and development by some very wonderful and talented people at Trek and its vendors, SRAM in particular. After many years of doing my own adaptations on various pieces of sporting equipment, I had approached them with a challenge: let's see what people who know what they are doing can come up with to create a safer, cleaner, and better performing one hand controlled bicycle. The Bandit is the result.

I'll provide more technical details in response to questions, but in essence, the Trek engineers tweaked the climbing buttons from a Shimano di2 system to provide multiple control points, one on the hood and one on the top bar by the stem. They took apart a SRAM Red hydraulic rim brake lever, installed the di2 buttons they had fabricated, and then SRAM engineered and built a splitter so that the single lever fires both the front and rear hydraulic rim brakes.

It goes. It shifts with the flick of a finger and without the need to take my hand off the bike. Best of all, it stops--boy does it stop. I lost my arm 39 years ago and can honestly say that this is the first time I have felt truly in control on fast descents.

Although I suspect it is the case for many other companies, I can personally vouch for the passion Trek has for the bicycles they build and the people who ride them. I am profoundly grateful for what they have done and will continue to do now that this is on their radar screen. I think we are only a few more spins of technology away from a solution that will not require the custom building and testing done here, and can go out to other riders in kit form.

As for the title above--you'll have to go back to my "Broken Promises ...." thread from last month. For anyone curious, I am healing well, limping only mildly, riding a big boy bike for several weeks now, and threatening to take the Bandit up to finish the ride from the point of my crash if the snow doesn't get there first. I want to wear the jersey. Since there is no official time limit, my Triple Bypass ride report will just be something like this: Distance: 120 miles; Elapsed Time: 93 days, 8 hours, 24 minutes.

I will start a similar thread over in the Adaptive forum as well, but it tends not to draw many eyeballs. As for the 41, I'm on the fence. My sister snapped the picture before I had a chance to remove the reflectors other offensive pieces, there was no white garage around, and I'm not sure I want to explain to a bunch of 20 somethings why the fitter had to unslam the stem to accommodate my temporary loss of flexibility caused by the hip surgery. Maybe if they are nice. If anyone knows how to make the picture big, that would be cool.



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Last edited by 10 Wheels; 09-28-13 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 09-28-13, 07:47 AM   #2
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The best thing about the photo is that it shows you got the bike to ride, not pose with.
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Old 09-28-13, 07:57 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tigat View Post
On Tuesday of this week, I traveled to the Trek factory in Waterloo, Wisconsin to test, get fitted upon and ultimately take home with me the bike pictured below. It is a six series Trek Domane frame, with a red liquid crystal paint scheme in matte finish.

It is beautiful.

It has a name painted on the top tube--"Bandit", which is the name my brothers call me when we play golf together, and reflects the fact that my left arm has gone missing at the shoulder and they consider any winnings I receive to be an act of theft.

More significantly, the Bandit represents almost a year of research and development by some very wonderful and talented people at Trek and its vendors, SRAM in particular. After many years of doing my own adaptations on various pieces of sporting equipment, I had approached them with a challenge: let's see what people who know what they are doing can come up with to create a safer, cleaner, and better performing one hand controlled bicycle. The Bandit is the result.

I'll provide more technical details in response to questions, but in essence, the Trek engineers tweaked the climbing buttons from a Shimano di2 system to provide multiple control points, one on the hood and one on the top bar by the stem. They took apart a SRAM Red hydraulic rim brake lever, installed the di2 buttons they had fabricated, and then SRAM engineered and built a splitter so that the single lever fires both the front and rear hydraulic rim brakes.

It goes. It shifts with the flick of a finger and without the need to take my hand off the bike. Best of all, it stops--boy does it stop. I lost my arm 39 years ago and can honestly say that this is the first time I have felt truly in control on fast descents.

Although I suspect it is the case for many other companies, I can personally vouch for the passion Trek has for the bicycles they build and the people who ride them. I am profoundly grateful for what they have done and will continue to do now that this is on their radar screen. I think we are only a few more spins of technology away from a solution that will not require the custom building and testing done here, and can go out to other riders in kit form.

As for the title above--you'll have to go back to my "Broken Promises ...." thread from last month. For anyone curious, I am healing well, limping only mildly, riding a big boy bike for several weeks now, and threatening to take the Bandit up to finish the ride from the point of my crash if the snow doesn't get there first. I want to wear the jersey. Since there is no official time limit, my Triple Bypass ride report will just be something like this: Distance: 120 miles; Elapsed Time: 93 days, 8 hours, 24 minutes.

I will start a similar thread over in the Adaptive forum as well, but it tends not to draw many eyeballs. As for the 41, I'm on the fence. My sister snapped the picture before I had a chance to remove the reflectors other offensive pieces, there was no white garage around, and I'm not sure I want to explain to a bunch of 20 somethings why the fitter had to unslam the stem to accommodate my temporary loss of flexibility caused by the hip surgery. Maybe if they are nice. If anyone knows how to make the picture big, that would be cool.

Wow, what a great story. It's great to know that modern technology can be used to broaden the scope of cycling. I hope that more people are encouraged to find adaptive solutions and to live life fully.

As to the 41, I would go ahead and post there.

Michael
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Old 09-28-13, 08:09 AM   #4
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You sir are an inspiration. I doff my chapeaux to you good Sir.

Mark Shuman
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Old 09-28-13, 08:15 AM   #5
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Cool bike, love the color. Thanks, you've made my morning.
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Old 09-28-13, 10:57 AM   #6
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Great story. Very inspiring. Generally speaking, where do you live and ride?
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Old 09-28-13, 11:05 AM   #7
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Very inspiring story. Thanks so much for sharing.
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Old 09-28-13, 11:30 AM   #8
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Cool!
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Old 09-28-13, 11:56 AM   #9
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Great story. And kudos to the people at Trek and SRAM for listening to you and taking up the challenge.
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Old 09-28-13, 12:02 PM   #10
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I had some seemingly good excuse for not riding today....but I think maybe I will ride after all.
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Old 09-28-13, 12:09 PM   #11
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Very awesome.. and as an aside note I saw a group ride going down my road this morning peppered full of recumbent handle cycle trikes, most of the riders appeared to be fully capable but several appeared to have no leg mobility, anything that gets you riding is awesome IMO!
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Old 09-28-13, 12:15 PM   #12
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I just read your prior thread and showed it to my wife. She laughed and reminded me of watching me try to brush my teeth after my 9 hour spine surgery. It took so long the toothpaste fell off the brush. Even then she had to speak strongly to me to get it done. To which she says my son said: "Mother, weren't you a little mean to dad talking like that?"

Anyway, your story reinforces the idea that you are a strong minded, not bullheaded, person who won't give up. The world needs more people like you.
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Old 09-28-13, 01:00 PM   #13
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Great story. Very inspiring. Generally speaking, where do you live and ride?
Thanks. I live just south of Denver and do most of my riding here. Try to make it back to the Coulee Region of Wisconsin to ride the bluffs with old friends a few times per year.
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Old 09-28-13, 01:41 PM   #14
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Awesome story! It just goes to show that where there is a will there is a way. This story falls into the same inspirational category of many of the Wounded Warriors that have overcome their disability and are able to enjoy cycling and all of it's benefits. Ride on, my friend.
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Old 09-28-13, 02:33 PM   #15
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Great story tigat, I know it gave me more inspiration than I already have. Have fun with the new bike and congratulations.
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Old 09-28-13, 05:31 PM   #16
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Wow you get to ride a pretty red CF Trek. I like it.
I've seen too many disabled vets who spend their lives drinking. I'm sure glad to see another person setting an example of surviving.
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Old 09-28-13, 06:55 PM   #17
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up!
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Old 09-29-13, 10:10 AM   #18
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Great story! Can you post some close up picture of your shifting setup? It sounds fascinating.
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Old 09-29-13, 10:22 AM   #19
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Great story! Can you post some close up picture of your shifting setup? It sounds fascinating.
Thanks: will do later today.
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Old 09-29-13, 11:19 AM   #20
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Kudos to you and to Trek. I will view them in a different light after hearing this.

Here are my two questions:

1. If ever there were an application for a single control-point shift mechanism, this is it. IOW, from the one control point you decide to shift up or down, and the computer decides whether to move the FD, RD, or both. Did that idea ever come up in your discussions?

2. Concerning braking, how do you deal with the issue of forward pressure on the right handlebar side?

Thanks,

Al
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Old 09-29-13, 11:26 AM   #21
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There are a number of points in your post that I find remarkable. Perhaps the most remarkable of all is SRAM and Shimano cooperating to make it possible.
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Old 09-29-13, 02:28 PM   #22
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A fabulous story and a lovely picture. Nicely done, sir.

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Originally Posted by tigat View Post
As for the 41, I'm on the fence. My sister snapped the picture before I had a chance to remove the reflectors other offensive pieces, there was no white garage around, and I'm not sure I want to explain to a bunch of 20 somethings why the fitter had to unslam the stem to accommodate my temporary loss of flexibility caused by the hip surgery. Maybe if they are nice. If anyone knows how to make the picture big, that would be cool.
Add more reflectors and maybe a bell or two and then post in the 41. First of all, even most of the yahoos there are smart enough to not be complete @$$es. Second of all, for those that aren't, there enough people there who will take care of that quickly enough.

Finally, a request (or, rather, something to thing about). While clearly not 'bent related, on BROL ('Bent Riders Online) there is a special needs forum. I think posting over there would be greatly appreciated as well.

Cheers,
Charles
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Old 09-29-13, 02:30 PM   #23
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Kudos to you and to Trek. I will view them in a different light after hearing this.

Here are my two questions:

1. If ever there were an application for a single control-point shift mechanism, this is it. IOW, from the one control point you decide to shift up or down, and the computer decides whether to move the FD, RD, or both. Did that idea ever come up in your discussions?


2. Concerning braking, how do you deal with the issue of forward pressure on the right handlebar side?


Thanks,

Al
1. All the time. It is the be all end all for this type of solution, and others as well I suspect. Been done on a bootleg basis but Shimano has not released it for public consumption. The placement and programing of the climbing switches was designed to simulate it (see pictures when I post them), but its not the real thing.

2. Since the brakes apply evenly, there's no cross pressure at the wheel, so its only body weight. For me, it's not much of an issue. The big hood on the SRAM helps; the light touch of the hydro lever helps; the loosened fit of the Domane helps; and good core strength puts me pretty light out there. On my mechanical bike, I ran a cross brake on the top bar with a cable splitter. Have not noticed a lick of stability difference moving to the hood.
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Old 09-29-13, 02:35 PM   #24
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There are a number of points in your post that I find remarkable. Perhaps the most remarkable of all is SRAM and Shimano cooperating to make it possible.
Agree. Reminds me of a scene from Ghostbusters, something about cats and dogs sleeping together. Maybe I should send it to Congress as a case study.
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Old 09-29-13, 02:42 PM   #25
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Any such thing as disc brakes with adjustable pressure relief vale that would reduce/increase applied force rear/front? If not, there should be. Not that hard to accomplish I would imagine.
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