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Recumbent What IS that thing?! Recumbents may be odd looking, but they have many advantages over a "wedgie" bicycle. Discuss the in's and out's recumbent lifestyle in the recumbent forum.

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Old 09-12-05, 11:34 AM   #1
gattm99
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Got bent

Well yesterday I traded my mountain bike for a Vision R-40. I took it over to my mom and dads house, they live in a subdivision with smooth wide roads. I had road one once and was able to get on this thing and ride it some, but no one else could even get it taken off. Man it was great riding around my old neighboor hood seeing the crazy looks.

Wonder how long it will take me to ride with other people. I'm still a little shaky.
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Old 09-12-05, 11:55 AM   #2
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Congrats!!!
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Old 09-12-05, 02:08 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by gattm99
Well yesterday I traded my mountain bike for a Vision R-40. I took it over to my mom and dads house, they live in a subdivision with smooth wide roads. I had road one once and was able to get on this thing and ride it some, but no one else could even get it taken off. Man it was great riding around my old neighboor hood seeing the crazy looks.
It's a great feeling isn't it? Congrats on your decision, I'm sure you won't regret it. As for your bent being hard(er) to ride than a conventional bike, look at it this way:

- You'll master the thing more and more at every ride, and soon enough you'll realize you track straight as an arrow, and you'll feel great about putting the effort to get there

- You'll be the envy of your fellow cyclists who'll all be in awe at "how hard it must be to ride this" telling you they couldn't do it (but *you* can :-)

- Best of all: you can forget bike locks for short stops, because a lot less people are able to pinch a bike and ride away with it if it's not a regular DF. I've personally witnessed a guy mounting my BikeE several years ago, with the obvious intention of stealing it, only to fall miserably after 3 meters (a BikeE isn't hard to ride, but I guess with the adrenalin pumping, the bike not adjusted to him, and trying to pedal against the 46/11 gear I always leave when I abandon the bike for a while, he lost his balance).


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Wonder how long it will take me to ride with other people. I'm still a little shaky.
I don't know how tame the R40 is, but I reckon 500km should be more than enough to fully learn how your machine behaves. I suggest this: when I get a new bike, there are three things I do regularly on all possible terrains (roads, paths, dry or wet) until the bike feels like an extension of me: (1) crash-stop the bike, almost lifting the rear wheel, or at the limit of locking the front wheel, (2) take it up the steepest hill I can find, and back down, trying to keep control of the bike at the lowest possible speed going up, and at the highest possible speed going down without panicking, (3) Swerve hard at high speed, to learn how to avoid something in a hurry without trashing yourself in the process. This way I discover my bike's "flight envelope" and get used to staying within them. At the very worst, I can take a tumble, but at least it's in a somewhat controlled environment. It never happened to me though.

Have fun with your new bike!
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Old 09-12-05, 08:16 PM   #4
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It gets easier every ride. I have a bent that's even more difficult to learn than yours, and I started with just simple coasting. Now that I've gotten 500 miles in on it, I'm not only as comfy, but much faster than my road bike.
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Old 09-13-05, 02:15 PM   #5
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Last night I did about ten miles on a Multi Use trail. Everytime I would pass someone I figured I would run that chain ring into them. Never did though and near the end of the ride I was much more stable.

A few things I have noticed.

When turning it seems to either turn very wide completely upright. When leaning some it turns much sharper, but seems to be touchy, quickly leaning over without much control. Maybe its is the short wheel base.

I found it hard to estimate speed. It seems fast since i am so low to the ground.

I could get in a higher gear and hold a higher speed seemingly without as much effort.

Must shift down at least two gears if I stop to get back going again.
It was really fun to ride, the view is so much better, the ride was so much better.

I can really see my Df bike hanging up in the basement much more often.
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Old 09-13-05, 03:26 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gattm99
A few things I have noticed.

When turning it seems to either turn very wide completely upright. When leaning some it turns much sharper, but seems to be touchy, quickly leaning over without much control. Maybe its is the short wheel base.
I reckon it's much more a result of your inability to shift your weight around like you do on an upright. When the bike leans, your only way out of a fall is steering. Since you're not quite used to it yet, and also because you have all the inertia of your legs, boom, pedals and chainrings in front of the front wheel, you have a tendency to overdo the steering, hence the twitchy feeling. Also, remember your CG is lower than on an upright, so you and the bike have a tendency to fall over faster.


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I found it hard to estimate speed. It seems fast since i am so low to the ground.
Ain't it great? you get more buzz out of the same set of muscles.


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I could get in a higher gear and hold a higher speed seemingly without as much effort.
A quick word of advice: I know it seems effortless and easy, but don't mash gears and force yourself to spin more, otherwise you're going to hurt in the knees very soon.


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I can really see my Df bike hanging up in the basement much more often.
Given how happy you seem to be with your bent, I think you'll see the DF in the classifieds soon :-)
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