One of the things I really like about my upright bikes is that as I ride I create my own breeze that cools my upper body. Doesn't matter if I ride 3 miles or 50 miles - if I pace myself right, I can arrive without sweating (if I choose to take it easy..)
On my bent, I arrive in a soggy mess - even if it's just 3 miles. I'm reclined to 30 degrees or so, on a hard shell seat with 2" of open foam pad. While I can understand why my back gets hot, it's kind of odd that my front also gets sweaty - I guess the wind just can't find it's way through my clothes to cool me off in that position?
And no, it isn't just lack of recumbent conditioning. I've been riding 'bents since 2004, usually many thousand miles per year.
This is really annoying to me. It basically makes my recumbent useless as transportation, since I intensely dislike showing up sweaty at work, at a friend's house, at the store.. Hence, I'm now riding my upright bikes a lot more, and my 'bent is lonely and neglected more often than I would like.
Anyone else have this problem? Are mesh seats appreciably better?
EDIT: I have worn a wicking t-shirt on my commute, and it was slightly better. But I'm rather opposed to wearing special bike gear on principle - especially as my commute is only 3 miles and it shouldn't be necessary. On my upright I can ride in a suit and tie, and arrive sweat free. If I have the choice between dressing like a spandex dork and changing when I get to work, or riding an upright in normal clothes.... well, you see the problem.