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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 08-28-08, 10:14 PM   #1
markwebb
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Drop Height Between Seat and BB on a Tour Easy TE - An Advantage ?

I just noticed something. On a lwb recumbent, they vary significantly in the drop or difference in height between bb and seat.

I have been test riding a Bacchetia Bellandare. The drop is only about 5" or less per specs.

A RANS Stratus LE is about 6", although it looks like bigger in pics.

BUT - A Tour Easy is a full 9" drop difference between seat and bb.

Coming from a df road bike, I would think that the pedaling action on a TE would be more similar to a df roadie than the RANS Stratus LE or a Bacchetia Bellandare because the drop is 4" or more longer than those brands.

That should mean - on a TE - you're actually pushing down more than you would on the others compared to pushing straight or more vertical with the other 2.

Is this correct? If so, should it ride more naturally like a df road bike? You'd feel like you're pushing vertical and down, rather than just vertically? Thus uses muscles and action more similar to a df road bike?

And the BIG question I am asking is - if this is true - is this good or bad? What characteristics do ya notice when the drop (bb to seat) is less or more on different lwb recumbents? Does it significantly change the riding characteristics?
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Old 08-28-08, 11:17 PM   #2
Jeff Wills
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I think there would be a difference if you acclimatized yourself to one design and then suddenly changed to another. I also think the difference would fade over time.

For instance: I started out riding a Lightning P-38 SWB, which has a rather high BB and a closed seat angle. When I switched to a Tour Easy with its low seat angle and more open seat angle, I was slower, but soon I was just as fast as I had been. The muscles adjusted.

It's not really a fair comparison, though. The Tour Easy had a fairing while the P-38 usually did not. Making "fair" comparisons among bikes is very tough- even upright bike reviews rarely display any kind of controlled testing that might lead to "this bike is better than that bike" conclusions.
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