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Thread: Trikes

  1. #1
    Senior Member Andre's Avatar
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    Trikes

    Hey folks,
    I'm thinking about trading my rans wave for a trike,anyone here ride one? How are they for commuting?
    I yam what i yam-popeye the sailor

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    Do you really want to commute on a Trike? I think no one here really took you serious but here is my opinion why they didn't.

    A trike is very low to the ground. You would be below the bumper of many cars in city streets. Most cars would not be able to see you on their rear view mirror making it dangerous. You could put a flag but this would become invisible at night.

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    Bent trikes like the Wind Cheeteh
    http://www.windcheetah.co.uk/home.htm
    are excellent machines and make seriously good commuting machines on fast open roads. They are easier to control at juntions, since you dont need to unclip your pedals, and are safer on ice.

    As far as visibility goes, people will point you out in the steet and wonder "how can anyone see something like that".

  4. #4
    Senior Member Nobby's Avatar
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    Andre;
    There are a LOT of trikers out there commuting (a lot is a relative term of course...there aren't really a "lot" of trikes). I recommend that you check out the ihpva trikes mailing list. You can get there from http://www.ihpva.org/mailing_lists/

    My next two homebuilt projects are going to be trikes.

    Feet first and onward!
    Bill (Nobby) Clark
    Edson, Alberta
    Vision R-44

  5. #5
    Junior Member fked's Avatar
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    I ride a Trimuter (Greenspeed clone). I was riding a Vision R-44 before the trike. The trike (in my humble opinion) is safer to ride in general because of the stability. They're almost impossible to turn over. Also, being able to stay clipped in at stoplights allows you to start very straight and quickly. I am almost always across an intersection before the cars around me because I can accelerate better on a trike.

    However, they are low and you have to be constantly on the defense (as you have to on a 2-wheeler too). It is intimidating when you roll up beside a SUV. If drivers see you, they give you a wider berth than a bicycle. However, I think it is definitely harder for motorists to see a trike than a bicycle.

    As far as riding to work, it really boils down to the amount of traffic you ride in and how comfortable you are riding in it. I live in Los Angeles and there's no way I would commute to work on a trike. But that's me.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Bike Spokesman's Avatar
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    If you have somewhere to put the trike when you're done your commute, then they are good.

    I don't actually own one, but my boss and I both find that the cars notice you more because from behind, some people assume that you are disabled and give you a wider bearth.

    Some trikes to consider are
    Any and all Greenspeeds
    Wind Cheata's
    and a little more rare, but one of the most economical nice riding bikes,
    The Crank It (dang it, i can't remember the name, i'm not even sure if it made it to production, but it isn't the mountain quad. The Cyclone is my best guess, but i'm pretty sure it isn't right)

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    I ride a Greenspeed GTO recumbent trike.

    On the rear I have a 3"x5" blinky, two red VistaLite blinkies, two red reflectors, two flags with reflective tape on them, reflective tape on the rear rack, and panniers with more reflective tape. There are small pieces of red reflective tape on the sides of the rear rack and the trike frame in the rear.

    Over my head, on an extension of my home-made headrest, are two more smaller blinkies angled off to the sides. Running side to side is a section of an old flagpole, slightly longer than the trike's width, with an orange pennant hanging on each end.

    For the front, I use a NightRider Digital Pro with a helmet mount, a white (sort of greenish) flasher on the derailleur post, a small white light mounted on the bottom bracket, and two 5w VistaLites (1 on each kingpin extension) that turn left and right with the steering. The cranks and pedals have small pieces of white reflective tape.

    I wear bright colored or reflective shirts/tops and helmets. In traffic or at night, I wear trouser bands (Day-Glo orange and reflective silver) around my hands to attract even more attention. Now, all I need is a strobe light!

    Overkill? Probably, but I want to be seen! I can handle the laughter so long as they're not laughing so hard that their eyes tear up and they can't see!

    I live in a small town on a fairly busy US highway. I feel safer there than in the supermarket parking lot, but I have done eight tours of at least a week.

    Ron - GTO
    GTO-E 1627

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    Hi Group!

    Everyone complains about having to unclip and looks at trkes as an alternative.

    I have a better solution: RETRACTABLE very lightweight landing rear wheels. These wheels span about 14" and are for use under 5 mph. Imagine staying clipped at a light, taking off, and retracting!

    Training wheels NOT!

    Whaddyathink?

    BoyntonStu

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    Not as silly as it sounds,there is infact a motor bike which uses this system.

  10. #10
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    Orbit,

    Can you supply a link to the motorbike with landing gear?

    I believe that this concept if developed would be widely used.

    BoyntonStu

  11. #11
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    ILL see if I can find it.Might have to aska motor cyclist at work,who can give me soom help though.
    It was developed by a motor cyclist who wanted to stay dry in the wet and wear a suit on his bike.When I find out more I will let you know.

  12. #12
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    I ride a Vision R30 and a Greenspeed GTR. I much prefer the GTR, especially in bad weather. Being so low to the road requires the already mentioned precautions for being seen and I'd suggest an air horn for those you don't see you. (and a bell for use on pedestrians)

    I agree completely about the amount of room given to me by overtaking cars. On a two wheeler I usually get 10" to 20"; on the trike I get 3 ft.! I asume most folks think I'm either a senior out on his 12volt scooter or some kind of handicapped person. The phenomena is almost universal.

    I think that having really good rear view mirrors is also important. Eye contact, clear signals and common sense are 95% of survival.

    If you've got a safe space to keep the trike where you work, I'd say go for it!

    One other suggestion: if you're in a tight traffic situation where cars can't pass you safely and things start to get backed up...have the humility to get of of the way for a while, even if it means pulling to the side and stopping; deference the greater form of valor, eh?
    Steven

  13. #13
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    soz to bring back an old thread but it really is an excellent thread regarding all the recent discussion about space on the road and making yourself more visible.

    I reckon that people going on this forum really want to share and learn ideas on visibility and safe road riding, as I do as well.

    >if you're in a tight traffic situation where cars can't pass you safely and things >start to get backed up...have the humility to get of of the way for a while, even >if it means pulling to the side and stopping; deference the greater form of >valor, eh?

    In a late reply to Greenspeeder, I agree wholeheartedly with this comment. Sometimes as the bike is wider, or maybe because people will be scared to pass you, you might have to concede to pull off into a driveway or something for a minute.

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    trikes

    go to www.benrideronline.com/reviews.htm for all the trike info you need. Also, there's a message board there dedicated to trikes only.

  15. #15
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    Minor edit: www.bentrideronline.com/reviews.htm

    Quote Originally Posted by Peter E Stewart
    go to www.benrideronline.com/reviews.htm for all the trike info you need. Also, there's a message board there dedicated to trikes only.

  16. #16
    Approaching Nirvana megaman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lisitsa
    Sometimes as the bike is wider, or maybe because people will be scared to pass you, you might have to concede to pull off into a driveway or something for a minute.
    Unless the traffic is very heavy I wouldn't pull off. You've got every right to be there. If they're scared to pass you then they shouldn't even be driving. But everyone knows that it's their god given right to drive. If you on the other hand can't handle the traffic you shouldn't be out there either.
    This is one of those things that bug me. This morning I saw a rider apparently doing the speed limit(25 mph), a pickup must have felt a need to pass this guy. But he didn't cause he would have been speeding(the cops patrol this street a lot). So there the pickup is in the other lane. While it's nice that he gave the cyclist space, he didn't leave much for oncoming traffic. The pickup could have only gone for a couple more blocks before the street ended. Why did he need to pass? To save 5 seconds getting somewhere?
    "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
    -- Albert Einstein

  17. #17
    Senior Curmudgeon FarHorizon's Avatar
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    I don't plan to commute with my trike, but I'll have to travel some busy streets in order to reach my bike path or country road. My game plan is to light up like a Christmas tree and pray that even the drunks notice me.

  18. #18
    Approaching Nirvana megaman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FarHorizon
    I don't plan to commute with my trike, but I'll have to travel some busy streets in order to reach my bike path or country road. My game plan is to light up like a Christmas tree and pray that even the drunks notice me.
    If you have experience on busy streets it shouldn't be a problem. It will take a bit to get used to being so low to the ground and the feeling that drivers may not see you. But they will.
    "The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
    -- Albert Einstein

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