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  1. #1
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    Thinking of getting bent and I ahve a few questions.

    I am thinking of moving over to a bent. I got hit by a car last Friday and the settlement would cover it. It is about the only way I can do it.
    Portland Oregon has a great shop for bent buying so that's good. I will use it mostly for commuting but longer rides are possible. I ride 20 miles a day right now.
    I want to be able to carry stuff and my last bike was a racing bike so everything went on my back.
    I have lots of lights and flashers but I was thinking of putting a short pole on with a xenon flasher or something. May be fun to pay with idea’s. Since I will be riding in some traffic and in the rain and the night. Any idea’s and suggestions?

  2. #2
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    One thing I did to be noticed was to buy some shirts from alert shirts. They very bright orange or green and can be ordered with reflective strips. You can look them up on the net. Bruce

  3. #3
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    at least a bent has lots of room for reflective tape. a bent will sure save me money on cycling clothing.

  4. #4
    Dominatrikes sbhikes's Avatar
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    I just got a 'bent on Tuesday. I love it! I had never ridden one before. I read a lot on the Internet and decided a SWB would be good, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that reviews of the Lightning Thunderbolt were pretty good, so since their factory was only an hour away I ordered one.

    My bike came with a pack that slips on over the seat, and even though it has a slim profile it seems to have a lot of capacity. I think you also could use a backpack that has a waist strap to carry things by hanging it over the back of the seat. My bike can also take a normal bike rack on the back, and with that I could attach paniers like any other bike. I prefer to have my bike carry things, not my back.

    I have no health problems at all. I bought the bike because I think recumbents are cool (yeah, I'm a geek, what can I say?). I'm pleasantly surprised. It's the most fun I've had in a long time! It's not like riding a regular bike at all. It is a completely different experience. It's hard to describe, but the other day I stopped to get a double macchiato at the local coffeehouse -- to go -- and drank it while cruising down the main drag on my way to work. Later, with serendipity I crossed paths with another recumbent rider who blew me a kiss!

    It's hard to tell, but I think I'm slower, especially on uphill climbs. But I'm certainly way faster on downhills -- and I feel safer going faster, too -- and as soon as my muscles get used to it I am sure to be as fast as I ever was (which isn't all that fast I have to admit.)

    I've always been one of these riders who likes to push myself. But on the 'bent for some reason I don't care about that. I will push if I want to or cruise if I want. It's all about enjoing the ride, enjoying life, being comfortable while exerting myself. It's hard to describe, but I am totally hooked! They tell you about the recumbent grin and I think the stories are true. I come home from my commute trying to make up an excuse for another ride.

    Good luck. I hope you get one, but if you aren't interested in enjoying life, then don't bother!
    ~Diane
    Recumbents: Lightning Thunderbolt, '06 Catrike Pocket. Upright: Trek Mountain Bike.
    8.5 mile commute. I like bike lanes.

  5. #5
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    I went for some test rides today. A bit scary trying a new bike that is so different. Tried the burley koosah the limbo the ez sport. They were out of the ez tourer in my size.
    I did not want a bike with the cranks too high my fat legs would get tried (G) I really like the limbo. I will test it longer Tuesday and decide.

  6. #6
    Doomsled funbun's Avatar
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    Have you considered a trike such as www.catrike.com?
    Check it out:

    Blog The Travelogue

  7. #7
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    I would love one. but first I can't afford one and I ride a lot at night and in city traffic I would not feel super comfertable so low.

  8. #8
    Errand Boy for my girls sukispop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steveknight
    I would love one. but first I can't afford one and I ride a lot at night and in city traffic I would not feel super comfertable so low.
    Hi Steve,

    Trikes are incredibly fun, and could hold a future for your recreational riding someday...but for commuting in heavy car traffic....

    Since you have a great 'bent store in Portland, I'd suggest taking a visit when you have at least a few hours to spare. Talk with the sales folk there, tell them what your primary intent is for getting one. Listen to what they have to say, but don't make a purchase based solely on their recommendations. Try test riding as many 'bents as you can, and don't just take them for a spin around the dealer's parking lot. Since you're going to be using this 'bent for commuting, you'll want to get a true sense of what it's like riding them. Do a lot of stopping and re-starting--some 'bents are much easier to re-launch than others. Get a feel for how user-friendly and controllable the 'bent is. In commuting, you'll want a bike that's easy to stop and re-start repeatedly, one that's easy to maneuver in heavy car traffic, and that feels safe and secure with while riding it. It should be designed so that it will easily take a good sized pack or bag, or be able to get fitted with a rack, so that you'll be able to easily carry all of the stuff you'll need to bring with you on your commute.

    Some 'bent veterans will tell you that "swb"(short wheelbase bike) models are the best for commuting; that "lwb"(long wheelbase bike) models are too long and unwieldy to negotiate in heavy car traffic. But 'bent experts like Bob Bryant of Recumbent Cyclist News, the most respected print magazine dedicated to recumbent bikes and recumbent bike riding, has repeatedly expressed his opinion that "lwb" 'bents, which typically have lower bottom brackets(the height of the crank, relative to the height of the seat base) than those of swbs, are easier to maneuver in heavy traffic, because it's easier to put your feet back on the ground quickly, when necessary. Only you can decide which type of 'bent feels "just right" for you, after you give yourself a chance to really test ride these different types of 'bents.

    Besides the swbs and lwbs, there is also the "clwb"(compact long wheelbase bike), which is usually considered the most user-friendly and well suited for recumbent "newbies". They're not usually considered very high performance-capable, and are best suited for recreational riding. But some of their models may be ideal for commuting, and, thus, a category that you many want to look into. They are also usually the best values(read "cheapest") in this relatively expensive bicycle sector. There's a very nice member on this forum, bentbrian, who commutes on his Rans Tailwind, and he loves it. If he reads this thread, he may share some of his thoughts on commuting on a recumbent. Sun Bicycles, which market the EZ line of 'bents(which are designed by Easy Racers, one of the biggest, respected, and revered names in recumbent bikes), have a number of models which may prove suitable for your needs...and they are priced very reasonably. Another line to check out, which another member has already mentioned earlier in this thread, is the relatively new line of clwbs and lwbs from Burley. In the clwbs, they make the Canto and the high-end Taiko...and, in the lwb form, they presently offer the Koosah and the Jett Creek, all of which are very user-friendly, very high quality(all frames are handcrafted in Eugene, Oregon by Burley), and very nicely priced. But wait until the '05 Burleys come out...they have some new models, including one that's even less expensive than the Koosah, and a couple that are fully suspended(which may be important to you, if your roads are less than perfect). Rans is a very respected 'bent line, which makes clwbs, swbs, and lwbs(their Stratus is a lwb classic that's been around for over 25 years, and is still one of their top sellers)...make sure to check their models out, too.

    Rans is also coming out with 4 semi-recumbents, which may be of interest to you. They are very user-friendly, handle just like uprights, offer great comfort, and are a blast to ride. But they don't have seatbacks, so they're not quite as cushy comfy as full-on recumbents....

    Anyway, take your time, give the bikes real world test rides, and buy the one that will best suit your particular commuting needs AND just plain "feels right" when you're sitting on it, and riding it. IMHO, that's your best determinant to getting the 'bent that's just right for YOU ....

    Good luck, and keep us posted! Take care.




    ***Geoff***
    '05 Greenspeed GT3, '04 RANS Stratus, '04 RANS Fusion

    "Nothing compares with the simple pleasure of a bike ride."
    (by John F. Kennedy, from The Quotable Cyclist)

  9. #9
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    I got hit by a car last Friday and it caused about 720.00 damage to my Italian racing bike. http://www.racycles.com/rd/catalog/c...us_2038691.htm though mine had different components and the original very nice steel fork.
    my leg got banged up a bit and my helmet trashed and my glasses scratched. the lady who hit me was so nice and so worried about me. she even rooted for me with the insurance guy (G) gave me a ride home afterwards too. called to make sure I was ok.
    well I got a settlement of 2500.00 I was only after getting my bike and glasses and helmet taken care of.
    I had been thinking of a bent for a long time. but I could not justify another bicycle and could not afford one.
    well here is the opportunity to go for it. we only have one store in Portland or that sells them but they are great guys. I rode the burley koosah and the ez sport (they did not have a tourer in the right size in stock) and the limbo. the ride was a bit harsh but I think it just needs some shock tweaking.
    when I started riding last year I was 270 now I am 228. but always the wedge killed my crotch. my sit bones were fine with all of the better seats I tried but I always had pin in the crotch that only let me get 20 miles a day in. I am not sure if it was the fit of the bike or my weight. only going more upright fixed it but that did not feel right on a racing bike.
    I only took short rides yesterday but Tuesday I will try a longer ride on my usual commute home. I was thinking of getting my wedgie fixed and getting a cheap mountain bike to pull a trailer. but since I can do that on the bent it is far more useful. plus I don't have to carry a backpack on it.
    Now I am debating on what to do with my wedgle. I can get it up and running with about 300.00. it needs a new fork (have to break down and get a carbon fork) but if I get one with a metal steerer I can save quite a bit over having to replace the headset Chris king) and the stem) and the front wheel needs replaced. the one man shop that has my bike the guy is real nice. but it kind of freaked that I was getting a bent. told me all of the horror stories (G) I think he was kind of pissed that I was not spending the money I got from the insurance there since he was the one that helped convince them that my bike was worth so much.
    I was thinking of having him part it out and sell the parts (he sells on consignment) but I really like the bike it is a cool frame with some nice details and even campy dropouts. and I doubt I would ever be able to by a bike of the same quality.

  10. #10
    'Bent Brian
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    If you fix your roadie you can always sell it on EBAY and get some of your money back out of it. Advice: Go 'bent and never look back! As sukispop pointed out I ride a RANS Tailwind. I do club rides, ride for fun, and commute on it. It might not be the fastest or lightest 'bent but it is fun to ride. It does what I want it to do. I throw a good size back pack over the seat and go. Should I ever decide to "upgrade" I will either upgrade the Tailwind, or move up to the RANS V2. Sukispop has a RANS Stratus. It is the Cadillac of the LWB touring 'bents and he loves it. A buddy of mine and his wife recently purchased a couple of Burley Koosa's. They love their 'bents too. Shbhiks (I think that is right) just purchased a new Lightning SWB and she is enamoured with it. There are a couple of others that post here that have a RANS Tailwind as well and like them. The best thing is the try as many out as you can. Try a CLWB, LWB and SWB. There might be one that really tickles your fancy. That is the one for you.

    Incidentally, riding in traffic is no big deal on my CLWB. It handles nicely and turning corners is no problem. The slightly lower (just below the seat) BB allows for easy starts.

    'bent Brian

  11. #11
    Dominatrikes sbhikes's Avatar
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    I emailed the company that makes my bike to tell them that I was glad I got one of their cheap models before they stopped making them. I said I couldn't justify the expense not having ridden a recumbent before. Now that I have one I think I'd be willing to set my price range to under $2000 instead of under $1000 because I can see that I'll probably enjoy this bike for a long time. So, if you can afford one you might just be pleasantly surprised. If you can revive your old bike, so much the better, but you might find it sitting idle a lot.

    You should make sure that you are the type of person who doesn't mind people pointing and staring, though.
    ~Diane
    Recumbents: Lightning Thunderbolt, '06 Catrike Pocket. Upright: Trek Mountain Bike.
    8.5 mile commute. I like bike lanes.

  12. #12
    Member beaterbike's Avatar
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    Another good forum on the net to check out (in addition to this fine forum) is www.bentrideronline.com

    Good for info for newbies and vets alike with regard to bents, trikes, velomobiles, etc.

    Hope this helps.

    BB

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by steveknight
    I am thinking of moving over to a bent. I got hit by a car last Friday and the settlement would cover it. It is about the only way I can do it.
    Portland Oregon has a great shop for bent buying so that's good. I will use it mostly for commuting but longer rides are possible. I ride 20 miles a day right now.
    I want to be able to carry stuff and my last bike was a racing bike so everything went on my back.
    I have lots of lights and flashers but I was thinking of putting a short pole on with a xenon flasher or something. May be fun to pay with idea’s. Since I will be riding in some traffic and in the rain and the night. Any idea’s and suggestions?
    I went for my first wet bent ride, spray from the traffic is in the face! also I guess I will have to learn how to just smile into rain, can't bend my head down and use visor for some kind of protection, think I'm going to do my foul weather commuting on my old upright.

  14. #14
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    Try the Sun EZ Rider. It takes 5 minutes to get used to riding; it sits like a Schwinn Stingray but better. Rear suspension, disc brakes, good seat, low pedals. I put my conventional "comfort bike" in storage. It doesn't come close to the EZ Rider for comfort!

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