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  1. #1
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    Recumbents and bad image

    Why have recumbents got such a bad image?
    My wife hates me riding mine,infact she will not ride a bike with me if im on the recumbent.
    We have had some new people next door.I went out on my recumbent,and when my wife found out the first thing she said was "No body saw you did they"?
    Ill have to admitt,ive been called the most offensive things when out on my recumbent,even had people try to push me off.
    It seems to attract the low life like a magic beacon.My wife worries
    about this.
    Even a good freind of mine said"You have got some bottle riding THAT?.
    Recumbents are great but they really do need a image boost.
    Even a recumbent rider was asked on another forum what it was like riding a recumbent and he said"Its like riding a fat woman,
    lots of fun,but you would not like to have your mates seeing you do it."

  2. #2
    Senior Member bentbaggerlen's Avatar
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    When I ride mine, people are friendly, wave and ask all kinds of things. Most often its "Did you build that yourself?" Other then a couple of remarks from stick bikers (AKA dicks on sticks, or "look at me I rade the same bike as Lance!" See Zippercheck.com for stick biker info) I have never had anyone say anything negative.

    If you wife has a problem with your bent you need to ask her
    "Whats wrong with you woman?" Yea very non PC
    Bentbaggerlen
    "When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking." - Arthur Conan Doyle

  3. #3
    Banned. DnvrFox's Avatar
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    I think there is a "Bent Support Group" out there in eworld somewhere for folks like you (and your wife, especially).

    I think they are sort of "cute."

    Your wife should be glad you want to get out and have some exercise, rather than complaining.

  4. #4
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    This is one roadie that thinks recumbents are cool...I always like to see them on the road! So just ignore the jerks that make rude comments, they represent only a hardcore minority of roadbike elitists.

  5. #5
    Senior Member bentbaggerlen's Avatar
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    Thankfully that is true. But I would not call them hardcore, poser is much more fitting. A bike is a bike....

    One customer that I see in the shop has told me many times that bents are not bikes, that their nothing but a fad. Every time he came into the shop same thing. Then I ran into him in North Hampton Ma. on my way back from Greenfield Ma. About 120 miles round trip. I was riding my bent and pulling the trailer with stuff that I had bought at a flea market. He asks me "How did you get here?" My anuser "Well duh! On my bike!" He did not know what to say. Now I don't here a peep out of this guy.
    Bentbaggerlen
    "When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking." - Arthur Conan Doyle

  6. #6
    Senior Member Greg's Avatar
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    Everyone knows that recumbent riders are ill folk. Trouble making nay sayers whos sole purpose is to shake their ankles at solid traditionalists. Either that, or they just have bad backs.

  7. #7
    Senior Member bentbaggerlen's Avatar
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    Hmmm, my back is fine....

    Viva Recumbency!

    Long live the laidback revolution!

    Let the freak flags fly!...........

    Sorry to much suger, holiday candy and all
    Bentbaggerlen
    "When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking." - Arthur Conan Doyle

  8. #8
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    Yeah, you're always gonna have the posers and the low-lifes that give you trouble. Most people (young and old alike) give me good comments on my bike. I own a road bike, a mountain bike and a recumbent. They all have their place. Can't take the 'bent off road, at least not intentionally! I don't ride the road bike much anymore but it used to be the only bike I had (lots of memories - wouldn't part with it for anything) and when I first saw a recumbent I knew that was the bike I wanted if I could ever afford one. I was quite young then. My son rides a 'bent and his younger buddies make fun of him for riding an old folk's bike. He just laughs and tells them he hopes he's still riding when he becomes an old folk and hopes his even older dad's right beside him! To me it doesn't matter what you ride, as long as you ride (the same goes for motorcycles, and that's another story).

  9. #9
    Senior Member bentbaggerlen's Avatar
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    I'll ride anything with at least two wheels. Mountain bikes, road bikes, recumbents, tandems etc. Use the best tool for the job.
    Bentbaggerlen
    "When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking." - Arthur Conan Doyle

  10. #10
    Senior Member izgod's Avatar
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    While riding through our development, a little girl, couldn't be more than 6 or 7, yelled out at me, "Weirdo." I know she was only repeating what she heard from her parents, probably while riding with the family in the SUV to church.
    Most children light up when the see the bike and say things like "Cool bike," and "Can I ride it?" Older folks, especially those who look like they get no exercise, look at you like you have cancer. Most healthy minded people smile and wave and sometimes say something nice. Just yesterday some workmen at the house asked me about it and when it came to "How much did it cost," they looked astounded then said, "Did you bump your head? It's just a bike!!"

  11. #11
    Senior Member bentbaggerlen's Avatar
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    Yea, right after "Did you build it yourself?" Comes "How much?!?For a bike!" I got this from a customer at the shop when he saw my Screamer at the shop. This was right after he had just ordered his new time trial bike, full out custom Lightspeed all top of the line ($6700) He could justify the cost of his new bike, but not my recumbent. He said it would get ridden more then mine, and it was faster etc etc. Turns out that his new bike was only ridden three times. It beat him up so badly he had bleading. He sold the bike at a huge loss.
    Bentbaggerlen
    "When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking." - Arthur Conan Doyle

  12. #12
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    All of the bicycle records for speed and distance are held by recombents, and yes they are bicycles. Two wheels, human powered. I don't own one either, but would like to if I had the room and budget for one. Some people are more interested in defending thier position/stuff by building themselves up than accepting others and thier stuff. Variation is the spice of life. If you don't like so much variation, simplify your life, but don't put others down for going for it. Rock on recombents!

  13. #13
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    Originally posted by ORBIT
    Why have recumbents got such a bad image?
    My wife hates me riding mine,infact she will not ride a bike with me if im on the recumbent.
    We have had some new people next door.I went out on my recumbent,and when my wife found out the first thing she said was "No body saw you did they"?

    In many circles, cycling is seen as a sport or as entertainment. Depending on who you talk to, cyclist must have a racing bike with "appropriate" clothing, or they must be mountain bikers, or using comfort bikes, etc. I suspect your wife likes to fit in the group and even to hide in it (whatever type of cyclists she prefers), and at best, she seems like a casual cyclist. Around here, we might call her a groupie.

    When you ride your recumbrent, you don't fit in perfectly in her group. You don't have the "proper" bike, probably not the "proper" clothing, and you don't look like an occasional cyclist, because you had to train (even modestly) to be able to ride on your recumbrent.

    P.S. Continue to use your recumbrent !
    Michel Gagnon
    Montréal (Québec, Canada)

  14. #14
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    My wife is more worried about me being attacked.Only today
    a car went passed me from behind and a kid hung out of the window,he shouted a loud roar and tryed to push me off but could not reach.
    The bike does really seem to have a horrilbe effect on people here.
    I also locked the bike when i went to do some shopping,has i waliked past it going to another shop a group of kid were lokking at it and were in fits of laughter,and iwasnt even riding it.
    People on a number of occasions have come at me to try and get me of the bike.
    I really enjoy riding my recumbent,i am feed up that this enjoyment is being spoilt be the lower than life sub normals that live in Birmingham.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Greg's Avatar
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    I guess your only choice is to move to the more tolerant "Promise Land".

    Reminds me of John Candy in Uncle Buck. "It's the Hat. People hate this hat".

  16. #16
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    I wish.But where is the promised land?

  17. #17
    horizontally adapted bentrox!'s Avatar
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    Evidently not in Verminham.

    Sorry to hear of your hassles. In almost three years of riding a recumbent I've not shared your experience. The worst has been limited to half-hearted jokes or mild derision. Not that I live in the Promised Land, but most folks here are genuinely curious about the bike (comfort, balance, speed, etc.) Most complimentary are the youngest kids and a lot of the teenagers - the ones least likely to experience riding one.

    Can you ride with a group? You know, maybe share your experiences with company?

    Strain that chain!
    I'll gently rise and I'll softly call
    Good night and joy be with you all.

  18. #18
    Senior Member fofa's Avatar
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    ORBIT I guess it would beg one to ask why they even care what you ride? I mean from your posts it almost appears you are the laughing stock of the community, or the village 'Bent rider. So why does the type of wheels you ride bring that on? Just wondering.

  19. #19
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    I really do think its the type of people that live in Birmingham,or perhaps other big citys in England.
    People here seem to be like mindless sheep with bad tempers.
    If Beckam went out wearing a green dress with purple and pink spots,people would start wearing the same.What im saying if something is fashionable or a star makes something fasionable then the sheep will start wearing it.
    But do something different because there is logical reasons for doing it and your a laughing stock.
    On a lighter note,a lot of people in our road have got their house
    up for sale,my dad said"its that bike you ride,their all leaving".
    Such is the bad image of recumbents.

  20. #20
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    I too have this reaction from some people in and around Wichita, Kansas. I've lived in other areas that had better bike riding and as a result more bikes on the road. The people in the area tended to be more accepting of bikes and recreation in general. Here in central the work ethic is very strong and I think people just don't understand the benifit of recreating. They just don't get it! The reason I'm here is because of a job. If it wasn't for that I'd move to a nicer place. If you get a chance, move to a place where your lifestyle is accepted more.

  21. #21
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    I think that I read Colorado Springs, Colorado has more recreation trails than anywhere in the U.S.A..

  22. #22
    opinionated SOB cycletourist's Avatar
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    People ride recumbents because they can't get comfortable on a standard road bike. And that is mostly the bike industry's fault for allowing road bikes to devolve into uncomfortable torture machines. A properly set-up road bike is quite comfortable for most people.

    But, even tho I will never own a bent I think they look cool and I'm glad they exist.

  23. #23
    horizontally adapted bentrox!'s Avatar
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    Originally posted by cycletourist
    People ride recumbents because they can't get comfortable on a standard road bike..., even tho I will never own a bent...I'm glad they exist.
    I'd think that unless you do own recumbent, it'd be presumptuous to generalize about those that do.

    I ride a recumbent, but not because I "can't get comfortable on a standard road bike". I comfortably ride all three of my bikes - road, MTB and bent - to enjoy the unique benefits of each. Like cycletourist, "I'm glad they exist" - all three. The bent is not my perfect, everything bike; it has its advantages and disadvantages. Of the latter, ORBIT is the victim of pranks and jokes, perhaps because of the undeserved nerdy imagery bents evoke in some folks. The image of bents seem to suffer more than any other type of bike from many unfortunate myths, including the supposed reason people ride them. I'm often amused how other cyclists that don't ride bents seem to know so much about them.
    I'll gently rise and I'll softly call
    Good night and joy be with you all.

  24. #24
    opinionated SOB cycletourist's Avatar
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    Bentrox,

    I never said I haven't ridden a bent- just that I don't own one. I have ridden bents and I have spent plenty of time talking to bent riders, mostly at RAGBRAI and the MS150. The story I got from most of them was that they couldn't get comfortable on upright bikes. I am not being presumptuous at all- if I gave you that impression I apologize.

  25. #25
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    Originally posted by ORBIT
    Why have recumbents got such a bad image?
    My wife hates me riding mine,infact she will not ride a bike with me if im on the recumbent.
    We have had some new people next door.I went out on my recumbent,and when my wife found out the first thing she said was "No body saw you did they"?
    Ill have to admitt,ive been called the most offensive things when out on my recumbent,even had people try to push me off.
    It seems to attract the low life like a magic beacon.My wife worries
    about this.
    Even a good freind of mine said"You have got some bottle riding THAT?.
    Recumbents are great but they really do need a image boost.
    Even a recumbent rider was asked on another forum what it was like riding a recumbent and he said"Its like riding a fat woman,
    lots of fun,but you would not like to have your mates seeing you do it."
    Orbit, I'd say recumbents are like experimental autos, electric scooters in offices and electric standing wheelchairs or walking pods. All can serve some purpose and are breaking new ground, yet are unorthodox and haven't found mass appeal. Which, I might add causes pause and even more so fosters fears for those that want to be part of something great, verses getting ostracizing looks because their not.

    Personally, I don't like them... They don't foster a vision of exercise, dynamic handling nor speed to me. They remind me of a lounge chair with pedals and windshield out front instead of a foot rest. Almost a wantabe motorcycle, yet held up short in design. To each, their own!

    Here's a question...Why is it that I always see some guy with a grey beard, shaggy hair, looks old because, with a protruding gut laying on his lap as he's passed... Here's a steriotype thought...It wouldn't surprise me to find out that most are scientists, engineers or educators of sort.

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