Impressions so far
Havn't posted much since I havn't ridden my homebuilt much! (See page 2 of the pictures thread)
I've gotten enough miles in on this thing to get some impressions, and I think it's worth refining. (Worth? I've got about 50 bucks in this thing...hehe)
First, I got the position and seat right. Very comfortable. Boom length seems to be spot on, and the angle for the seat back seems fine. No discomfort, no numb hands.
Second, overall gearing is too low. I got the front DR set up and adjusted, and havn't shifted out of the big ring yet. I can easily spin out the top gear. I have another MTB crank, and I plan to switch the big and middle chainrings around, to put the middle ring on the outside. Should substantially lower the overall gearing. I admit I've been too lazy to write down all the gear ratios....
The brakes suck. I used cheezy old non-QR calipers. I figure I can adjust them considerably, but would much prefer V's on the rear. To do that, I need another frame. Unknown to me when I got it (free..), it's a 24" wheel frame. I had a good 26" wheel, so I used that and went with the calipers.
The top run of the chain occasionally hits my calf, causing ick. Pedal extenders? Run the thing through a tube? Dunno yet.
Sure is noisy. Mostly due to the absolutely dreadful old-style BB on the main frame. At my first opportunity, a cartridge BB goes in. (If I can find one to fit) I cannot keep this thing in proper adjustment.
Must re-do the jockey wheels. I'm using derailleur idler wheels, plan to replace them with the made-from-skate-wheels jobs. This arrangement needs a bracket to prevent the whole thing rotating under pedal pressure.
Overall, I think I can refine this thing into a decent recumbent. I already have version 2.0 planned; I have my eye on a Mongoose aluminum Y-frame. (26" Wheels!) I figure by refining the seat (very heavy construction) and stem, and possibly finding a cast-off aluminum-framed roadster for the front boom, I can bring one of these things in at right around 30 pounds.