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Old 10-20-09, 05:38 PM   #1
C200
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Rans Xtreme vs Cruzbike

I am looking for a recumbent that is fast and can handle traffic and is fairly easy to ride. I have settled on Rans Xtreme or Cruzbike. Does anyone have any experience with either bike. Their pros and cons

Thanks.
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Old 10-20-09, 06:10 PM   #2
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C200-
I would recommend at least taking the Cruzbike for a test ride. I built my own front-drive recumbent, and it was a little strange at first. Now that I've gotten used to it, more or less, I really like it. The movable bottom bracket forces you to steer with your legs. Your hands/arms really want to take control but you need to resist that and just relax your upper body.
There's a learning curve, but the more miles I put on it, the better rider I become (funny how that works ). Just don't take any tight turns right away.
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Old 10-20-09, 06:18 PM   #3
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Just one more thing, I think the Cruz is way overpriced. No offense Cruzbike owners, I'm just sayin'. You can buy the conversion kit and get yourself a Y-frame suspension bike cheap and save alot of money if you're mechanically inclined.
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Old 10-20-09, 06:51 PM   #4
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I agree, WAY overpriced.

You're talking about two TOTALLY different bikes. You really need to ride before you buy.
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Old 10-20-09, 08:18 PM   #5
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I agree, WAY overpriced.

You're talking about two TOTALLY different bikes. You really need to ride before you buy.
The only problem that I have is that no one around my area sells recumbents. When I do decide to buy I will get a frame set and build it up myself. I had a Tour Easy and Gold Rush at one time but sold them to buy a diamond frame bike. I rode Skyline Drive in VA on my Tour Easy. That was a trip. I really don't believe the Tour Easy climbs all that well. The bike handled well enough but it was slow on those hills. I understand that the Xtreme and the Cruzbike are better climbers. It is puzzling to me how the Xtreme can that much of a better climber than the Tour Easy but I read that it is.
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Old 10-21-09, 06:59 AM   #6
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I think the reports of the X-Stream climbing prowess are a case of new-bike-placebo. We heard the same thing about the V2 and the Stratus-XP when they first came out. The V2, particularly, was designed and marketed as a GRR-killer. After the hype wore off, we found they were not all that much better than the previous models.

The MBB of a Cruzbike is... different. I like the looks of the Cruzbikes, but when I actually got on one, I hated it. Definitely don't buy without a test ride!
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Old 10-21-09, 08:49 AM   #7
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Cruzbike has a pretty good forum on their web site. I think that test riding one, isn't going to tell you much, because apparently it might take a couple of weeks to really feel comfortable on it the Cruzbike.
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Old 10-21-09, 11:03 AM   #8
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I think that test riding one, isn't going to tell you much, because apparently it might take a couple of weeks to really feel comfortable on the Cruzbike.
Maybe that's the thing. I have no reason to switch, so I'm not willing to put in the time and effort to learn.
The same can be said for a lot of upright riders, who don't have an overpowering reason to switch to recumbents; I've seen that if they get one just to try it, they'll probably leave unhappy.
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Old 10-21-09, 11:48 AM   #9
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Cruzbike seems to me like it would be the better climber of the two. The Xtreme did pretty well in RAMM this year. However, would a Gold Rush have done just as well with the same riders? I cannot believe that a long wheel base like the Xtreme will climb well. I have read the Cruzbike forums. They are interesting to read. The only Cruzbike that I would be interest in would be the Silvio. The other bikes cannot be that fast and they don't look much different than the ones that the average person can build. The down fall with the Silvio is the high price tag for the frame set.

When I did skyline drive on my Tour Easy I only managed five miles per hour on some of those grades. The bike was very stable but it was anything but fast. Two years later I went back and rode Skyline Drive on a Raleigh C200 Hybrid. I averaged over 11 miles per hour and I was two years older. I really liked the Tour Easy but I sold it because of the way that it climbs...really slow compared to a Hybrid.
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Old 10-21-09, 05:45 PM   #10
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I can tell you for sure the ability of the xtreme is not a placebo. I was the original prototype tester for the bike and have a production version now. It's not as nimble as my carbet by ANY means, but it's way faster than it looks. I don't know why, but it hits a sweet spot between aero and body position.

And I don't believe the cruzbike is any kind of climber. Typically FWD bikes are known to be lacking in their ability to climb. All the recent "records" they have broken have been time trials on flat ground. Not to diminish the accomplishment by any means. I hope they come to Sebring where there are already established records to break. Would be a bigger feather in the cap.

I think you need to define your expectations more. Are ou wanting a cmmuting bike, so you're in traffic a lot, or are you wanting a climber or a racer? Your "want" from your posts make things a bit unclear.
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Old 10-21-09, 10:13 PM   #11
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Skyline Drive? Are you in the SF Bay Area? Nanda Holz at Spincyclz has a Silvio that you could test ride.
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Old 10-22-09, 05:58 AM   #12
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Skyline Drive? Are you in the SF Bay Area? Nanda Holz at Spincyclz has a Silvio that you could test ride.
I am on the East Coast. There is a road that runs across the top of the Blue Ridge Mountains in VA called Skyline Drive. This road turns into the Blue Ridge Parkway after 110 miles and runs another 400 miles into North Carolina. One of the prettiest roads that I have ever ridden.

Sorry for the confusion. I do ride in traffic at times with our local riders. However, I like climbing hills. Where I just moved from an 8% grade was our level ground so to speak. I do like to travel at a nice rate of speed. I am not one that just meanders along at a slow pace. I did that on my Tour Easy riding hills and realized that going slow is not for me. I also realize that a fairing going up a mountain is useless when it comes to speed. If anything, the fairing is a hindrance because of the extra weight. That is why I am looking a bike that is best in all worlds...slow speed handling, good climbing ability with some speed and fast on the flatter road ways. That is why after some research, I narrowed it down to the Cruzbike and the Xtreme.
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Old 10-22-09, 07:52 AM   #13
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. . . slow speed handling, good climbing ability with some speed and fast on the flatter road ways . . .
You might also want to consider the Volae Team, either steel or carbon.
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Old 10-22-09, 09:02 AM   #14
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All the recent "records" they have broken have been time trials on flat ground. Not to diminish the accomplishment by any means. I hope they come to Sebring where there are already established records to break. Would be a bigger feather in the cap.
Aikigreg, "a bigger feather"?, you have got to be kidding. On October 10th Maria Parker set a women's world 12-hour bicycle record on a Cruzbike Silvio on real roads with real dogs, real potholes and real traffic. It is yet to be certified since it just happened. Read her account of it here. I challenge your statement that there is a bigger feather. There may be different feathers, but there is no bigger feather.
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Old 10-22-09, 11:34 AM   #15
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Aikigreg, "a bigger feather"?, you have got to be kidding. On October 10th Maria Parker set a women's world 12-hour bicycle record on a Cruzbike Silvio on real roads with real dogs, real potholes and real traffic. It is yet to be certified since it just happened. Read her account of it here. I challenge your statement that there is a bigger feather. There may be different feathers, but there is no bigger feather.
From what I could see, it was a flat loop course. Real roads, but I bet they didn't choose a course with lots of rough chip seal or Michigan-style expansion joints every 30 feet. With a support -oops- verification vehicle following her the entire way. I doubt that dogs or potholes were a big problem. Exactly what was the women's 12-hour record before Maria's performance?

I don't want to detract from her performance too much, but I really don't think it 'proved' anything.
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Old 10-22-09, 12:57 PM   #16
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I can see right away how this discussion has turned away from giving an objective answer to the OP's question into that of attempting to down play a remarkable woman's (Maria Parker) accomplishment (12 hour record) on a proven platform (Cruzbike Silvio).

YEARS BEFORE Maria Parker's impressive ride in New Jersey several months ago, and her new woman's 12 hour record almost 2 weeks ago...when Cruzbike only offered the conversion kits, (no factory built bikes), reports were coming in left and right from owners reporting how well their conversions climbed hills in spite of the fact that many of these were based on cheap, heavy department store full suspension mountain bikes.

Another poster on this thread claims that FWD bikes are "are known to be lacking in their ability to climb" is just plain disinformation. No disrespect meant but that is misleading when ironically, Cruzbike is well known for it's climbing performance.

I've observed that Cruzbike has a well established online community, and I recommend to the OP to look for advice there. Doug Burton is their "techie" guy, and can offer a wealth of information on those bikes. He has gone through the whole Cruzbike experience starting with a couple of conversions, through the mid range models like the Softrider, and now rides a Silvio. He is a good guy.

Best of luck to you in whatever you choose to ride.

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Old 10-22-09, 01:17 PM   #17
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From what I could see, it was a flat loop course. Real roads, but I bet they didn't choose a course with lots of rough chip seal or Michigan-style expansion joints every 30 feet. With a support -oops- verification vehicle following her the entire way. I doubt that dogs or potholes were a big problem. Exactly what was the women's 12-hour record before Maria's performance?

I don't want to detract from her performance too much, but I really don't think it 'proved' anything.
I can't remember the woman's name but I believe the previous woman's 12 hour recumbent record was 229 miles riding a Bacchetta Aero Ti or Carbon.

And as for the last remark, I am assuming you meant that there was no serious climbing involved in the course used to break the 12 hour woman's record recently by Maria Parker. Certainly you don't mean to detract the feat of riding 241+ miles in 12 hours on a bicycle right? After all, what percentage of the cycling population right now, whether male or female can do that...on any bicycle? Very small? Very little? Very few? Yea, I thought so.

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Old 10-22-09, 05:11 PM   #18
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Oh, I think it proves a few things. Maria is obviously a great cyclist and doing those kind of miles on ANY bike, even a streamliner, is no mean feat. I'm quite certain she could shame most all of us.

But by a bigger feather I meant trying to break existing women's records on the same course at the same time.


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From what I could see, it was a flat loop course. Real roads, but I bet they didn't choose a course with lots of rough chip seal or Michigan-style expansion joints every 30 feet. With a support -oops- verification vehicle following her the entire way. I doubt that dogs or potholes were a big problem. Exactly what was the women's 12-hour record before Maria's performance?

I don't want to detract from her performance too much, but I really don't think it 'proved' anything.
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Old 10-22-09, 05:12 PM   #19
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From what I could see, it was a flat loop course. Real roads, but I bet they didn't choose a course with lots of rough chip seal or Michigan-style expansion joints every 30 feet. With a support -oops- verification vehicle following her the entire way. I doubt that dogs or potholes were a big problem. Exactly what was the women's 12-hour record before Maria's performance?

I don't want to detract from her performance too much, but I really don't think it 'proved' anything.
Nancy Raposo set the 12-hour women's bicycling record of 240 miles on a DF in New Jersey in 1992. Maria crashed at about half way after rubbing up against an SUV and still went on to set the record.

BlazingPedals, what is the point of you belittling this phenomenal accomplishment? From the above you criticize the roads, the elevations, the support vehicle, but you "don't want to detract from her performance too much. "Too much"?. WTF are you? What's your motive? A small 46 year old woman accomplishes an incredible task and you trash her? Shame on you and your house.

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Old 10-22-09, 05:21 PM   #20
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Oh get over yourself man. He's entitled to his opinion. You act like you're about to cry. He's not trashing her, he's just stating the facts as she sees. I think Maria has broken st least two records now, actually. Both of which were not pre-existing. That doesn't change that she is an awesome athlete. Head-to-head is a whole different ballgame though. I have 4 international records myself, either solo or as part of a team, and I can assure you that only one of those is worthy of real note. The others are just pure bragging where there was no previous recordholder. We'll see what happens as I attempt several others this next year, all of which will be contested.

Oh, and Mr. Wong, I am not spreading disinformation. I happen to have a fair amount of seat time on a cruzbike, so I have exnough experience to call it as I see it. Scoff all you want, but I am giving an INFORMED opinion, unlike a lot of the crap tossed about here and on BROL by folks who have never ridden the bikes they denigrate.

I'm done threadjacking. No more replies off topic on this from me.

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Nancy Raposa set the 12-hour women's bicycling record of 240 miles on a DF in New Jersey in 1992. Maria crashed at about half way after rubbing up against an SUV and still went on to set the record.

BlazingPedals, what is the point of you belittling this phenomenal accomplishment? From the above you criticize the roads, the elevations, the support vehicle, but you "don't want to detract from her performance too much. "Too much"?. WTF are you? What's your motive? A small 46 year old woman accomplishes an incredible task and you trash her? Shame on you and your house.
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Old 10-22-09, 06:16 PM   #21
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Oh get over yourself man. He's entitled to his opinion. You act like you're about to cry. He's not trashing her, he's just stating the facts as she sees......... I have 4 international records myself,.........I'm done threadjacking. No more replies off topic on this from me.
So you attack the person, not the issue. Argumentum ad hominem, not a very mature strategy, but you're the same guy that trashes a 46 year old woman and her accomplishment of setting a World Record for all bicycles, DFs and bents. And also supports similar activity from your blow buddy BlazingPedals.

So, you have 4 International Records. Is this supposed to give you bully rights? Why is this pertinent to your attacking people on this thread and Ms. Parker?
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Old 10-22-09, 07:04 PM   #22
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I am looking for a recumbent that is fast and can handle traffic and is fairly easy to ride. I have settled on Rans Xtreme or Cruzbike. Does anyone have any experience with either bike. Their pros and cons

Thanks.
C200....I have an Xstream (Angletech SHO build) and now have about 1,500 miles on it. I did a 700 mile review in August over on BROL that may be of some help. I can try to answer any additional questions you may have....hope this helps...

http://www.bentrideronline.com/messa...ad.php?t=52308
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Old 10-22-09, 07:32 PM   #23
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C200....I have an Xstream (Angletech SHO build) and now have about 1,500 miles on it. I did a 700 mile review in August over on BROL that may be of some help. I can try to answer any additional questions you may have....hope this helps...

http://www.bentrideronline.com/messa...ad.php?t=52308
Milkman, that was a great review and your bike looks great. For the sake of me I cannot see how a long wheel base recumbent can out climb a short wheel base recumbent. Like I said before, the Tour Easy was slow on hills. Have you increased your speed on the hills since your review? Does the bike hurt your back while hammering?

I am leaning towards the Xtreme when I decide to buy, I just want to make sure that I make the right decision when I do decide to buy.
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Old 10-22-09, 08:11 PM   #24
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Oh, and Mr. Wong, I am not spreading disinformation. I happen to have a fair amount of seat time on a cruzbike, so I have exnough experience to call it as I see it. Scoff all you want, but I am giving an INFORMED opinion, unlike a lot of the crap tossed about here and on BROL by folks who have never ridden the bikes they denigrate.

I'm done threadjacking. No more replies off topic on this from me.
Aikigreg,

I do do acknowledge your opinion now that you've made it clear that you're talking about your experience with these bikes. Maybe it just didn't work out for you as it has for others.

My concern was the fact that you made a blanket statement that FWD's "are lacking in their ability to climb". That can be misleading if you don't clarify that this is your personal experience. Remember how some people add, "YMMV" after making a statement or giving their opinion about something.

Personally, I don't feel that anyone was blatantly attacking Cruzbikes, or Maria's performance on the Silvio, but I did detect a slight "so what?" kind of attitude.

Anyway, enough of thread jacking for me too.

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Old 10-22-09, 11:08 PM   #25
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Milkman, that was a great review and your bike looks great. For the sake of me I cannot see how a long wheel base recumbent can out climb a short wheel base recumbent. Like I said before, the Tour Easy was slow on hills. Have you increased your speed on the hills since your review? Does the bike hurt your back while hammering?

I am leaning towards the Xtreme when I decide to buy, I just want to make sure that I make the right decision when I do decide to buy.
Thanks for the compliment. Now I'm no expert on these matters and all my personal riding experience is based on my Trice QNT and Xstream. As you may already know, hill climbing ability is highly dictated by bike weight, the version of XStream I have weighs in at about 23.3lbs without add ons, which is relatively light for a recumbent. SWB vs LWB, weight is key regardless. I'd bet a years salary I'd be even faster hill climbing on an 18lb SWB Carbent. This next comment may be more subjective and others may chime in with personal experience, but I believe the seat to crank relationship on the Xstream would provide for more efficient and power stroke position while pedaling than the tour easy. When I was test riding LWB bikes, I didn't like care for the seat to crank relationship on the tour easy other simililar LWBs.

I have increased my hill climbing speed, I'm much more comfortable now and just recently have been applying more "mash" to my "spin" on the hills. The bike is very stiff and transfers power well. Back never hurts on this bike, but occasional recumbutt does occur when in upright position, adjusting the seat and laying it back helps. What i'm really enjoying about this bike is the seat adjustment ability, when i've got alot of hill climbing I'll usually bring the seat more upright, I'm finding I can generate more power in this position. When i'm facing a very stiff head wind or just want to get very aero I'll lay the seat all the way back....this bike really flies on the flats......

It's understandable wanting to make the right decision, I bought without a test ride and I have no regrets on the purchase. I commute on my trike and use the Xstream for weekend "speed" rides. I would not buy this bike if I had to ride in alot of stop and go situations though....this bike is meant for long distance open roads...Hope this helps!?
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