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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 02-01-07, 11:04 PM   #1
dokie
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how fast do these bikes go ?

just wondering what is the cruzing speed for a strong rider??


and what is max speed on flats?

just an estament in mph please
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Old 02-02-07, 07:10 AM   #2
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I used to be a 17-18 mph rider on my old Trek road bike. That was for 'pretty flat' centuries with around 1300 feet of climbing, and drafting other, stronger riders like a madman.

Now I have a lowracer and I typically do around 20-21 mph on century rides, no drafting required. That's rolling average; I rarely do centuries for elapsed time - rides are an excuse to eat! The last century I did for elapsed time, I did it in 4:38. As for max speeds on flat ground, I've been clocked at 39 mph. I should add that I still have an upright bike, and my speeds on that have actually gone down over the years; so I can't blame it all on being in better shape.
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Old 02-02-07, 08:33 AM   #3
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I started riding a Sun EZ Sport CX with a Mueller fairing in Sept. 1, 2006. I typically rode 11-12 mph on my mountain bike. I started at 11 mph in September on the EZ Sport and now ride 13-15 mph and it is increasing slowly over time. Last Friday, I rode 53 miles at 13.5 mph. I could never have done that on my mountain bike. As your legs build and you lose weight, the speed goes up. I have lost 25 pounds since September. That helps quite a bit.
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Old 02-02-07, 08:45 AM   #4
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18-20mph on the flats on my commute to work. Slower if the weather is bad.
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Old 02-02-07, 11:15 AM   #5
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15 to 17 on the flat and 67 years old. Couldn't come anywhere close to that on an upwrong. (Couldn't last long enough to get an average!)
BTW, I think Jeff-o forgot to mention that his average is on THREE wheels! Right?

...........jim
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Old 02-02-07, 11:31 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlazingPedals
Now I have a lowracer and I typically do around 20-21 mph on century rides, no drafting required. That's rolling average; I rarely do centuries for elapsed time - rides are an excuse to eat! The last century I did for elapsed time, I did it in 4:38.
Very impressive. I want to break 5 hours for a century.

I am a roadie who just got 'bent. It's reassuring for me to read about improvements when converting because I'm frustrated that I can't go as fast on my 'bent (yet). I got to get my 'bent muscles up to speed and get used to the heavier bike. So tell me more about how I'm going to slice through the wind and sprint up the hills on the recumbent .
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Old 02-02-07, 12:07 PM   #7
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My last century was 4:45min in over 100 degree heat. I'm pretty close to BlazingPedals in speed. That same century (the only one I've been clocked on) my average for the first 60 miles was 22.7, and it dropped off after that. One that same ride, there was one stretch of brans new pavement, totally flat, where my 10-mile average was 33mph.

I was shooting for time though so that's not my "normal" pace - just what I am capable of. I'll usually cruise in the 18 range - that tends to be fairly easy in Texas.
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Old 02-02-07, 12:56 PM   #8
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Some of you guys are pretty fast. My fastest century last summer was 5:10 (100.4 miles) total elapsed time including all stops and about 80% solo. That was on a Baron. FWIW, I'm 55 and 60# overweight, so yeah, I'm faster on a recumbent than an upright.
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Old 02-02-07, 12:57 PM   #9
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Not to go off-topic, but aikigreg, did you ever get your M5?
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Old 02-02-07, 02:29 PM   #10
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A 5-hour century is a respectable goal. I started riding bents with a goal of 2.5 hours for a 50 miler. That took a couple of years to attain, which I did by way of fairings. I never managed a 5 hour century on the old V-Rex, although I had some good 50-60 mile rides that were easily on-pace. The real breakthrough happened when I got my lowracer. I imagine that a highracer would also do the trick, but a 'standard' bent would require more training and improvement than I could manage. Of course, adding more hills will drop your averages no matter what you ride. I have lots of small hills, but no major climbs or steep grades.
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Old 02-02-07, 04:51 PM   #11
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I wish I was fast.

Gee, I wish I was as fast as everyone else. According to my log on bikejournal.com I am averaging between 12-16mph. That is mainly commuting with lots of stop-start and some other rides with some small but steep hills. I have done 29mph on the flat, and then I just run out of lungs. I am just an unfit commuter, but I am faster than I was on my old DF beater.
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Old 02-02-07, 08:12 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlazingPedals
A 5-hour century is a respectable goal. I started riding bents with a goal of 2.5 hours for a 50 miler. That took a couple of years to attain, which I did by way of fairings. I never managed a 5 hour century on the old V-Rex, although I had some good 50-60 mile rides that were easily on-pace. The real breakthrough happened when I got my lowracer. I imagine that a highracer would also do the trick, but a 'standard' bent would require more training and improvement than I could manage. Of course, adding more hills will drop your averages no matter what you ride. I have lots of small hills, but no major climbs or steep grades.
Blazing:

Just out of curiousity, how much does your lowracer weigh? My high racer is 37 lbs and I think that's part of my problem....
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Old 02-03-07, 05:44 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by SesameCrunch
Blazing:

Just out of curiousity, how much does your lowracer weigh? My high racer is 37 lbs and I think that's part of my problem....
I don't know about BP's Lowracer but my Bacchetta weighes in at 26 to 27 lbs. What High Racer do you ride at 37 lbs or is that loaded down with gear?
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Old 02-03-07, 08:26 AM   #14
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Low racers can vary from ~18# (VK2 and SL-II) to ~32# (stock Barons, steel M5s).

My Fujin SL-II weighs 21# with pad and pedals. My Baron the same way is ~27#. In my flat part of the world, my SL-II has little advantage over my Baron as far as speed goes. In fact, my fastest century has been on my Baron.
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Old 02-03-07, 09:53 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Ric
I don't know about BP's Lowracer but my Bacchetta weighes in at 26 to 27 lbs. What High Racer do you ride at 37 lbs or is that loaded down with gear?
I am new to 'bents, and I have a converted full suspension mountain bike using a kit from cruzbike.com. I am now thinking I should put that kit on a 20" folder I have. That would get the weight down to the high 20's and get me some better performance, perhaps at the sacrifice of comfort. I'm not a racer, but I do like to do fast recreational rides as opposed to slow touring pace. Also, I live in the SF Bay Area. It's hard to find a ride without climbs, so weight is a big deal here.

Should I be concerned about doing a double century on 20" wheels with front suspension?
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Old 02-03-07, 10:50 AM   #16
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The last time I weighed my Baron was when it still had a fiberglass seat and caliper brakes. It was 27 pounds. Since then I've converted to disc brakes and replaced the fiberglass seat with carbon. The carbon seat is lighter but the brakes are heavier, so overall it's probably still about the same weight as before.
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Old 02-03-07, 12:41 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SesameCrunch
I am new to 'bents, and I have a converted full suspension mountain bike using a kit from cruzbike.com. I am now thinking I should put that kit on a 20" folder I have. That would get the weight down to the high 20's and get me some better performance, perhaps at the sacrifice of comfort. I'm not a racer, but I do like to do fast recreational rides as opposed to slow touring pace. Also, I live in the SF Bay Area. It's hard to find a ride without climbs, so weight is a big deal here.

Should I be concerned about doing a double century on 20" wheels with front suspension?
I'm not a fan of the full suspension mountain bike or road bikes. IMO the FS fall way short in performance, and all it does is add a lot of unnecessary weight to the bike. I'm also not a fan of Cruz Bike. I do understand why you have the weight difference you have now. I do have a question though; I'd like too know why you chose to do the conversion instead of just buying a recumbent.
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Old 02-03-07, 06:23 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Ric
I'd like too know why you chose to do the conversion instead of just buying a recumbent.
Long answer to your question:
I had the bike and used it doing all the crazy things mountain bikers do. Well, 6 weeks ago, I had a bad accident on it - fractured my neck, injured my shoulder. Got helicoptered out, spent 2 days in an ICU. Also, the MRI's showed degenerative condition in my neck. Had a lot of time in the hospital to think, and decided to give up mtb-ing (at age 51, it's about time). The Cruzbike allowed me to exact some poetic justice on the bike that tried to kill me. I neutered and turned it into a recumbent , which was better for my neck.

I like the Cruzbike setup overall. The FWD is very intriguing and offers some bio-mechanical advantages. I think it makes for a nice touring setup - comfortable for long range cruising. However, you're right, the combination of the full suspension bike, plus the 9 lbs that Cruzbike adds add up to a heavy bike. I have too many hills around here for that. My own riding style is more sporty recreational. I do like to go fast. So, what I have decided to do is to take the Cruzbike kit off the mtb and put it onto my Downtube folding bike. This would give me a 27/28 pound 20" mid-racer. Plus, I think I can preserve some of the folding features. Gonna get working on that asap. Oh boy, another bike build project !

Sorry for the major thread hijack. I'll start another one on the folder conversion.
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Old 02-05-07, 07:31 AM   #19
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BTW, I think Jeff-o forgot to mention that his average is on THREE wheels! Right?

...........jim
Yup, three wheels... and a front fairing.
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Old 02-05-07, 11:44 AM   #20
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Not to go off-topic, but aikigreg, did you ever get your M5?
Not yet - Bram still has the durned thing and is taking his sweet time getting it together. And once it gets shipped to Garrie, it'll take more time yet since Garrie is building me some goodies to go with it. It's supposed to be slightly sub-20 pounds from Bram, and will have his innovative brakes as well. I expect it to be right at that or even less once Garrie gets done - he's adding wheel covers and a carbon front boom.

I'm also considering having a full shell made for the bike so I can compete in the streamliner classes as well.
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Old 02-05-07, 12:45 PM   #21
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"Yup, three wheels... and a front fairing."


Seriously? OK, I've just been looking at two-wheeled bents assuming that trikes were God awful slow. Obviously I've misjudged the trikes. I think I'll be staying on thread by asking.......How fast are trikes in relation to two-wheelers?
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Old 02-05-07, 01:20 PM   #22
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Seriously? OK, I've just been looking at two-wheeled bents assuming that trikes were God awful slow. Obviously I've misjudged the trikes. I think I'll be staying on thread by asking.......How fast are trikes in relation to two-wheelers?
On my fairly reclined trike (catrike speed 2004), I can keep up with most non-drafting DFs, and I'm faster or slower than a minority of them on flat ground. With a strong headwind, they struggle to keep up. Downhill, I'm faster than all of them (or at least, if they can go faster, they dont dare to)

But the rolling resistance of a 3rd wheel is very noticeable, especially compared to a 2-wheel bent. Sure, 2-wheel bents are faster, but with a trike, you're bringing a chair whereever you're going.

I also have a HP Velotechnik Grasshopper, and I love it just as much.

They're just two different beasts with different ways of being enjoyed.
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Old 02-05-07, 01:35 PM   #23
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Yep, it's true. Between a comparable trike and 2-wheel bent, the 2-wheeler will usually be faster, simply because of the reduced weight, frontal area, and rolling resistance. It all depends on what the trike was designed for...
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Old 02-05-07, 03:02 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aikigreg
Not yet - Bram still has the durned thing and is taking his sweet time getting it together. And once it gets shipped to Garrie, it'll take more time yet since Garrie is building me some goodies to go with it. It's supposed to be slightly sub-20 pounds from Bram, and will have his innovative brakes as well. I expect it to be right at that or even less once Garrie gets done - he's adding wheel covers and a carbon front boom.

I'm also considering having a full shell made for the bike so I can compete in the streamliner classes as well.
Thanks for the update. I'd been wondering. Sounds like you'll have a jewel when you finally get it.
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Old 02-05-07, 07:01 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by Opedaler
"Yup, three wheels... and a front fairing."


Seriously? OK, I've just been looking at two-wheeled bents assuming that trikes were God awful slow. Obviously I've misjudged the trikes. I think I'll be staying on thread by asking.......How fast are trikes in relation to two-wheelers?
As someone stated it kinda depends on the trike and its design. I'm as fast on my Catrike Speed @ 28lbs, as I was on my 5200 Trek @ 18lbs but my avg. was about 3mph slower on my Hotmover trike @41lbs, comes down to weight and design. You as so many others assume that trikes are God awful slow, not true. The thing is most people who ride trikes don't have to worry about speed when they ride, the rides to enjoyable and stress free and IMO that's what riding a trike is all about. They can become an addiction so be careful.
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