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  1. #1
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    Best Recumbant for touring

    Hey guys and gals, I am new to bents and want a longer bike and was wondering what would be the best bike to get for touring long distances. I want comfort and lots of gears. I do a lot of touring on my long haul trucker but want something more comfortable. My butt back and neck just won't take 100 mile rides anymore. I can pedal all day but the aches and pains kill me. I am 55 years old and want to ride long distances. Any names would help. I know it is a broad question but any suggestions would help. thanks

  2. #2
    Fat Guy Rolling dcrowell's Avatar
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    How about a Tour Easy? If you want three wheels, what about the Catrike Expedition?

    I own a Bacchetta Agio and I'm taking it on a four-day tour starting this Saturday.

    Oh, and they are recumbents.
    Car-Free IT Geek
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  3. #3
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    We're both in the same boat. Even short rides for me on a diamond frame ends up with neck, back aches and numbness where it counts.

    I personally feel that the long wheelbase format is good for touring - Tour Easy, Rans has their own version and maybe the Ez1. Hardest part of the bike is transporting the bike.

    You need a special rack or a van. I built a bent for myself crossing the dimensions of the Tour Easy but with the
    16/20" wheelsize of the BikeE's. I've mounted an MP3 player on the bike and I no longer feel bored even
    on long rides. There is even a camera mount so I can see the camcorder screen while riding.

  4. #4
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    I would agree that a long-wheelbase would be the better choice.
    I started out with a short-wheelbase recumbent and the steering was very jittery--needed lots of attention. The seat comfort was fantastic, but if I looked back over my shoulder for more than 2 seconds I'd be headed towards one side of the street or the other. There just wasn't a lot of steering feel, and small steering inputs resulted in relatively large direction changes. Plus I got numb feet riding it, that I couldn't prevent any other way.

    The 20/26" LWB is far more relaxed, and I've never gotten numb feet on it.

    Cycle Genius and Sun makes some lower-priced LWBs.
    The Cycle Genius Falcon/Raven bikes have a very similar position to a TE and are more adjustable, but heavier. If you are taller (above 6') you may need to put longer handlebars on.

    -----
    No matter what bike you end up with,,,,,

    Most recumbents have a lack of custom-fit touring racks, except for the most very expensive bikes. So you may have to make or modify racks, or you can pull a trailer.

    For touring bicycles it is a good idea to stick with common sizes of rims and tires. Every bike store and Wal-Mart everywhere sells 20 and 26 tubes and tires. They're not great tires, but they will work.
    If you ended up with something with odd size wheels like 650 or 451, you might have a much harder time finding tires and tubes while touring.

  5. #5
    Senior Member oddball's Avatar
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    Bacchetta Bella, http://bacchettabikes.com/bikes/touring/bella
    I don't own one ( have a Giro 20). I've test ridden one before and they are very easy to learn. In my opinion Bacchettas are a good deal. Love mine.
    Get a Terracycle Easy Reacher rack and a normal rear rack and you can haul 4 panniers. Bike is rated for 300lbs so you'll only hurt yourself, not the bike, if you overload it. Has mounts to upgrade to disks brakes if you want.

  6. #6
    Senior Member delcrossv's Avatar
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    I agree that LWB is probably the best touring plartform. I'd recommend a Longbikes Slipstream. I have its precursor (a Ryan Vanguard) and it just eats up the miles in absolute comfort.

    http://www.longbikes.com

    Lightning P-38 / M5 M-Racer/Ryan Vanguard

  7. #7
    no one cares -holiday76's Avatar
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    This

    Mmmm, bicycles.

    I prefer emails to private messages - holiday76@gmail.com

  8. #8
    Fat Guy Rolling dcrowell's Avatar
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    I greatly enjoyed my tour on my Bacchetta. It was harder up hills and I still got sore legs, but I had absolutely no pain in my wrists, neck, or butt.

    IMG_1792.jpg

    Details here.
    Car-Free IT Geek
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  9. #9
    Senior Member Cyclebum's Avatar
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    This:



    Tour Easy, loaded for touring. Seat design is outstanding, as much can be crammed in space behind the seat back by adding some lacing. Hard to explain, but it is a great catch all. On a recent tour in Big Bend country in S. Texas, I toted 4 liters of water in that space and could have carried 6 liters. Comes with 4 attach points for bottle cages. A great touring bike.
    Last edited by Cyclebum; 06-16-12 at 08:08 AM.
    The bicycle is one of the great inventions of mankind. Delights children, challenges young men to feats of daring, and turns old men into boys again.--Me

  10. #10
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Rather than everyone dropping brand names, perhaps it would be best if y'all suggest your favorite LBS that deals with bents instead.

    Having no direct experience with bents, I've heard good things about the Hostel Shoppe and Bicycle Man. Would help if the OP divulged their general location, but there may be lurkers out there, so go ahead and drop the name of your fav Local Bent Shop.
    Last edited by no1mad; 06-16-12 at 09:35 PM. Reason: grammar
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
    Community guidelines

  11. #11
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    For loaded touring I would want the same size tires front & rear if possible. Makes on-the-road replacements easier to find. In a SWB high racer, I like the Bacchetta Giro26 which will run everything from 559, to 650c to 700c wheels... In a LWB I would probably take a Rans Stratus or Xstream. For USS, I'd lust after a Longbikes, maybe with a better seat?

    What sort of frame style do you want?
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  12. #12
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    If I were you, I'd find a local dealer and try as many different kinds are you can. Don't dismiss short wheelbase bikes without trying them. I've owned several (both over and under seat steering), and find them extremely stable. I've done long, self-supported tours on them, and not just on nicely paved roads. Compared to long-wheelbase bikes, they are easier to store, easier to transport, and weigh less. Most allow for much more reclined seats that make short wheelbase bikes more aerodynamic than long wheelbase (at least until fairings are involved). Maybe long wheelbase will suit you better in the end, but you should at least try so you know...
    ICE B1, Brompton H6, Schwinn Mirada drop-bar vintage mtb

  13. #13
    Senior Member Trikin''s Avatar
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    I've only toured on a trike with the load being shared on my trailer (with an assist motor on the trailer)
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by Trikin'; 04-01-13 at 09:41 AM.

  14. #14
    Fat Guy Rolling dcrowell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    Rather than everyone dropping brand names, perhaps it would be best if y'all favorite LBS that deals with bents instead.

    Having no direct experience with bents, I've heard good things about the Hostel Shoppe and Bicycle Man. Would help if the OP divulged their general location, but there may be lurkers out there, so go ahead and drop the name of your fav Local Bent Shop.
    Louisville no longer has a 'bent shop.

    I'll have to travel when I'm ready to buy another.
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  15. #15
    A might bewildered... Dudelsack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dcrowell View Post
    Louisville no longer has a 'bent shop.

    I'll have to travel when I'm ready to buy another.
    Did Tom go under? If so, that's a real loss.

  16. #16
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by no1mad View Post
    Rather than everyone dropping brand names, perhaps it would be best if y'all suggest your favorite LBS that deals with bents instead.

    Having no direct experience with bents, I've heard good things about the Hostel Shoppe and Bicycle Man. Would help if the OP divulged their general location, but there may be lurkers out there, so go ahead and drop the name of your fav Local Bent Shop.
    Without knowing where you live, that's kind of a pointless thing to do. I could recommend all the recumbent dealers in NE OK or Arkansas, but that won't do you much good if you live in Maine.

    Try doing searches on recumbent and the name of the state you live in. Then search on the terms Rans and the state you live in, Bacchetta and the state you live in. Keep on till you know what is around you.

    When we know where you are, then perhaps we can help.
    Last edited by Artkansas; 06-17-12 at 04:50 AM.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  17. #17
    Senior Member Steamer's Avatar
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    I've noticed that the OP hasn't been back to the thread he/she started, with very very little useful info provided. Makes all of the advice we are attempting to give seem almost pointless and perhaps even unappreciated by the person supposedly recieving it. Forum etitquette 101.

  18. #18
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steamer View Post
    I've noticed that the OP hasn't been back to the thread he/she started, with very very little useful info provided. Makes all of the advice we are attempting to give seem almost pointless and perhaps even unappreciated by the person supposedly recieving it. Forum etitquette 101.
    The OP has made two posts in nearly 3 years. I guess that tells us all we need to know.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  19. #19
    Insane Bicycle Mechanic Jeff Wills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear38 View Post
    Hey guys and gals, I am new to bents and want a longer bike and was wondering what would be the best bike to get for touring long distances. I want comfort and lots of gears. I do a lot of touring on my long haul trucker but want something more comfortable. My butt back and neck just won't take 100 mile rides anymore. I can pedal all day but the aches and pains kill me. I am 55 years old and want to ride long distances. Any names would help. I know it is a broad question but any suggestions would help. thanks
    As others said, a Tour Easy or Gold Rush from Easy Racers makes a superb touring platform. Several friends of mine went across the U.S. a couple years back on them:
    http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/?o=1&doc_id=820&v=lO
    And another has done several cross-country and cross-part-of-the-country rides:
    http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/direc...r=VanGundy&v=E

    FWIW: I wouldn't worry about the "both tires the same size" bikes. In general, the front wheel of a LWB bike is so lightly loaded that the tire will last for multiple thousands of miles.
    Jeff Wills

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  20. #20
    Super Moderator no1mad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
    Without knowing where you live, that's kind of a pointless thing to do. I could recommend all the recumbent dealers in NE OK or Arkansas, but that won't do you much good if you live in Maine.

    Try doing searches on recumbent and the name of the state you live in. Then search on the terms Rans and the state you live in, Bacchetta and the state you live in. Keep on till you know what is around you.

    When we know where you are, then perhaps we can help.
    The lack of the OPs geo location does hinder any one who wants to help him/her specifically. However, I'll do you one better in the search- go to BROL and look at all of the sponsors in the banner. That provides some of the biggest dealers in the U.S., as well as most of the major brands. Do a dealer search from within the manufacturer's site. Note- call any shop listed, as not all the info is accurate/up to date.
    Last edited by no1mad; 06-17-12 at 09:34 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cyril View Post
    Ride what and in what manner pleases you. Those that mind don't matter, and those that matter don't mind. srsly.
    Community guidelines

  21. #21
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    Thanks for all who posted. I didn't realize I had to post so many times per year to ask a question. I appreciate all the answers. I also didn't realize there was a certain etiquette required. My bad.

  22. #22
    Senior Member Cyclebum's Avatar
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    bear38, be aware that we're a nosy crowd and would like a follow up post/pic of what you buy.

    I switched from df to bent a few months and 2500 miles ago for same reason as you. Occasionally mount the df again to remind myself why I switched.
    The bicycle is one of the great inventions of mankind. Delights children, challenges young men to feats of daring, and turns old men into boys again.--Me

  23. #23
    Fat Guy Rolling dcrowell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dudelsack View Post
    Did Tom go under? If so, that's a real loss.
    Bluegrass Bicycle wasn't Tom's shop. Tom just worked there. They really weren't carrying 'bents (usually), but would order them.

    Bluegrass closed 5/31. Bummer.

    Schellers (ugh) might have a several year old Sun in stock - still at MSRP.
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  24. #24
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bear38 View Post
    Thanks for all who posted. I didn't realize I had to post so many times per year to ask a question. I appreciate all the answers. I also didn't realize there was a certain etiquette required. My bad.
    Well, a thread is a sort of conversation. You asked a question, but we need a bit more information from you to help you best. Don't hesitate to post. And responding to our answers lets us know that we are helping (or not ) So join the fun. This is social media.

    Has anything we have said, sparked any ideas or questions?
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  25. #25
    Senior Member chandltp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trikin' View Post
    I've only toured on a trike with the load is being shared on my trailer (with an assist motor on the trailer)
    I'm glad someone mentioned a trike. I ordered and ICE Sprint RS that I'm planning to use for my distance rides/short tours, and it should arrive in about 1 1/2 weeks. I drove 3 hours and spend 5 hours test riding and that's the one I ended up liking the best.

    Shoulder issues prevent me from riding a road bike comfortably, and comfort bikes just aren't good for multiple days in a row at any distance for me. My legs say yes, but my butt says no.
    There are 10 types of people, those that understand binary and those that don't.

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