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  1. #1
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    How to stabilize a Bacchetta Corsa?

    I've been an upright rider and racer for 25 years and my wife just got me a Bacchetta Corsa to help me with my back issues. I love the ride and the speed of the bike. Climbs like a champ but I'm used to a bike that is a bit less "twitchy" in the steering. On my uprights I can ride on a road strip but on this bent I need to allow for a 2 foot area incase the bike darts to the right or left. I'm kind of tired of the panic attacks when the bike jumps with the slightest handlebar input. How can I stablilize this racer?

    I was thinking of two ways:

    1: Fork with less rake.

    2: Switching to a different "tweener" bar and stem that comes closer to my body rather than the superman style of bar and stem that is stock on the Bacchetta Corsa.

    Any ideas would be very helpful.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Senior Member blknwhtfoto's Avatar
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    Try mellowing out a bit, let the bike do its thing. Don't have a death grip on the handlebars, just hold them and be gentle. Just calm down, a recumbent can be the singlemost graceful thing on two wheels as long as its rider mellows and just guides the bike rather than trying to strongarm it. Also, be mindful of where you are holding your torso weight. Try and center yourself and mellow, back off the deathgrip and the bike will stabilize itself with no hardware changes.

    Simple is better.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freds2
    ....I love the ride and the speed of the bike. Climbs like a champ but I'm used to a bike that is a bit less "twitchy" in the steering.....
    Any ideas would be very helpful....
    You could try getting a heavier front wheel--get the heaviest rim and widest tire you can fit.

    My first bent was a 20/26 SWB and the twitchy steering was rideable but I never liked it. I tried changing the front tire from the OEM 1.5" wide to a 2", and that did help the stability somewhat.

    I eventually moved to a long-wheelbase instead, for the above reason as well as a couple others.
    ~

  4. #4
    Bendigo Youth Racing Wheelchairman's Avatar
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    I have no idea how the steering works and where or if it's hinged in areas, but usually the longer the steering system, the less responsive it will be to your inputs. If you still don't get it, well think of it this way. If you swap a 90mm headstem on your MTB, to a 110mm headstem, the MTB will need more input to make it turn the same distance as the 90mm headstem. The same princible will work on your bike.....obviously
    Pain is weakness leaving the body
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  5. #5
    Recumbent Ninja
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    you just need time. Bents are more responsive, and you're still trying to give it the same input as you did the road bike. We all went through it. Once you get used to it you'll love the feeling of having to put little to no pressure on the tiller to hold it steady.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freds2
    I've been an upright rider and racer for 25 years and my wife just got me a Bacchetta Corsa to help me with my back issues. I love the ride and the speed of the bike. Climbs like a champ but I'm used to a bike that is a bit less "twitchy" in the steering. On my uprights I can ride on a road strip but on this bent I need to allow for a 2 foot area incase the bike darts to the right or left. I'm kind of tired of the panic attacks when the bike jumps with the slightest handlebar input. How can I stablilize this racer?
    How tall are you? If your legs are too short, the CoM (center of mass) will be too far forward. This makes the bike far more sensitive to steering inputs.
    Last edited by PuttPutt; 03-08-07 at 07:46 AM.

  7. #7
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    The longer stem idea sound the least expensive route to try. I'm actually fairly back on the bike. Time will settle me down on the bike but after how long? Thanks for the input guys

  8. #8
    Senior Member BlazingPedals's Avatar
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    Bents often feel twitchy to noobies. The trick is to relax your upper body, and let the arms rest naturally on the bars instead of trying to control the bike by pushing on them like a DF rider would. Give it a few hundred miles before doing anything to the bike. If that doesn't work, then you might need more pullback, possibly even tiller bars. Some people just never get comfortable with the superman/tweener setup. I can ride either, but prefer a tiller/praying hamster position.

  9. #9
    cyclopath vik's Avatar
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    How long have you been riding it? That bike should be quite stable and easy to ride, but it might take you a few miles to get used to it. Try holding the bars between your thumbs and forefingers very lightly. A little steering input goes a long way.

    Personally I wouldn't change a thing on that bike. Its well designed and well made - just give yourself a bit more time.
    safe riding - Vik
    VikApproved

  10. #10
    Sumanitu taka owaci LittleBigMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freds2
    How can I stablilize this racer?
    The problem is not the bike. You need to allow your brain plenty of time to adapt to the new balancing issues.

    You're used to an upright, and all the subtle balancing adjustments your brain and body make almost unconciously when you ride it. On this bent, many of these balancing adjustments are useless now, and the new ones necessary haven't been developed yet in your involuntary movements.

    There's not much you can do consciously. Every thing you try will seem like lots of work, since you're consciously trying. Only when your brain learns how to balance without thinking about it will you begin to feel "normal." There is only one way to do this: ride a lot, especially uphill.
    No worries

  11. #11
    Dr.Deltron
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freds2
    How can I stablilize this racer?
    Stabilize the rider first. As stated above, you really need to just sit back & relax.
    And put in some miles.

    I went through the same thing more than 10 years ago when I got my first recumbent, a Challenge Hurricane.
    I crashed in the 1st 100 feet of riding!
    So I immediately wanted to change forks, etc.

    But after looking at the rest of the bike (I got it used) I realized that there wouldn't be a "funky" fork on such a well thought out bike!

    So I just rode it as much as I could. Took about 6 months before I was comfortable taking it off road!
    And now, it's like flying a jet fighter!!
    This bike is truly amazing!! And FUN!!!!

    Give it time and you will truly enjoy your 'bent, no mods needed.
    OK, maybe a minor one or two.

  12. #12
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    Update.

    After talking to Bacchetta about my conscerns I came to a compromise. I'm a firm believer in setting up the proper leg and seat position and then bringing the handlebars in to the right position without moving the seat. Bacchetta agreed that adding a glideflex stem will allow me to adjust the bars to a position that will keep me from having to overextend my reach and allowing me to relax more on the bars. I was within the crossover sizing where I could fit either the Medium or Large frame. I went with the Medium frame and with that goes a potential problem with reach.

    I'll make this minor change and put in some good Spring miles and see how it goes. Thanks all for your advice and I appreciate all the suggestions.

  13. #13
    sch
    sch is offline
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    Bacchetta style bikes really do get twitchier with a tight grip on the
    bars. That was one of the first things I learned when I first got on
    a bent (pre Bacchetta clone and a P38): tight grip resulted in
    3-4' side to side wobble, loose grip with no curl in fingers resulted
    in a smooth ride. Didn't help much on the tiller steering of my
    Rotator, but 200mi of riding reduced the side to side wobble from
    3' to less than 6" and now I ride down the white line just like the
    DF does.

  14. #14
    <>< SoonerBent's Avatar
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    Freds2, you have a very similar cycling backgroud to mine. At first the difference in handling of the DFs to the Corsa was like driving a 4-door long bed pickup then getting in a Lamborgini. For some time I would ride behind in group rides for fear of taking people out with my swerving. After a few weeks though I got used to the quickness and love it. Now I can hold a white line as well as ever. I haven't ridden a DF in months but I bet if I did I would find the handling to be frustratingly slow.

  15. #15
    Portland Fred banerjek's Avatar
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    I test rode a Corsa recently and was impressed with its handling (including in a bit of loose stuff) and climbing. It sounds like you just need to relax when you ride spend more time with it. Having said that, I found that the stability changed when I increased the angle of the seat. Put it just a tick more upright and see if that doesn't help.

  16. #16
    Steel is Real. markw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Freds2
    Update.

    After talking to Bacchetta about my conscerns I came to a compromise. I'm a firm believer in setting up the proper leg and seat position and then bringing the handlebars in to the right position without moving the seat. Bacchetta agreed that adding a glideflex stem will allow me to adjust the bars to a position that will keep me from having to overextend my reach and allowing me to relax more on the bars. I was within the crossover sizing where I could fit either the Medium or Large frame. I went with the Medium frame and with that goes a potential problem with reach.

    I'll make this minor change and put in some good Spring miles and see how it goes. Thanks all for your advice and I appreciate all the suggestions.

    Been there, done that, sold it and got a large. If you get the seat too far reclined it un-weights the front wheel. My Large Corsa feels way more stable than the Medium strada that came before it. I've also got some 5000 more miles on a recumbent now. Relaxing plays a pretty big part too. You should have the bars where there's maybe a slight bend in your elbow to reach them. On the large I can ride no handed, I could never do that on the medium. Bacchetta makes 2 stiffy stems, the glideflex bothered me in that it could move forward and back. I personally prefer the steering to not have any additional play.

    Mark

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