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Recumbent What IS that thing?! Recumbents may be odd looking, but they have many advantages over a "wedgie" bicycle. Discuss the in's and out's recumbent lifestyle in the recumbent forum.

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Old 01-14-05, 03:38 PM   #1
horizontally adapted
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Sore neck, sciatica, numb feet, knee pain - the pain of it all!

I see today's posts are dominated by physical ailments. Is it any wonder how other cyclists sometime regard bents as being only a "last resort" - not a choice - for cycling?
Please understand, I don't knock those who've been able to re-visit the joy of cycling through bent-riding where they might not otherwise have been able to. It's just this insufferable image of "cycling for the disabled or aged" begins to bother me, especially when the conversation focuses so much on describing our aches and pains. I'd like non-bent folks to know there are other reasons to choose - not "settle for" - a bent. Post those comments as well.

Forgive the rant. I am your brother, even if I whine.
I'll gently rise and I'll softly call
Good night and joy be with you all.
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Old 01-14-05, 05:44 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by bentrox!
I'd like non-bent folks to know there are other reasons to choose - not "settle for" - a bent. Post those comments as well.

Forgive the rant. I am your brother, even if I whine.
I got my first trike, WW 3.4, because it looked like it would be really fun to ride. It exceeded my expectations. Only AFTER I got the trike did I realize that traditional sore parts were not a given. My very excellent ProFlex with its dual suspension is gone and so is the very nice riding Cannondale recumbent. I'm left with, now, two trikes. Be sure that I don't feel that I'm settling for anything--I just have more fun on the trikes (and I can always rent a mountain bike).

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Old 01-14-05, 08:51 PM   #3
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Going bent was the best thing I have ever done. My wife is a cancer survivor and when we rode a DF she was in constant pain, she lost both collar bones and cannot bear the pressure on her shoulders or the bent over position that the DF requires. When I rode the DF both my hands were always numb and so were the "family jewels." I can clearly remember on some of our longer rides on the DF (over 20 miles) wondering why I let my love talk me into riding bikes again.

When we changed to bents (BikeE ATs at first and Rans V-Rexes now) we discovered all the pain and discomfort went with the DFs. Now a long ride is in excess of 55 miles and I never wonder why we are riding bikes! True we are older now, but I think we are much wiser. I have had a lot of young kids ask me how we can ride so far and still be so full of energy. They need to get off the antiques and ride modern bikes.
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Old 01-14-05, 09:39 PM   #4
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I know how you feel bentrox. I'm not disabled nor do I have any aches and pains. I'm not old, either. I just thought recumbents looked like fun and kind of high tech. And they are fun. As for high tech, they're about as tech as any other bike, but I like knowing some guy had to think up the geometry and build it in his own factory. (That'd be Tim at the Lightning factory.)
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Old 01-14-05, 11:21 PM   #5
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Im just getting into bent side of things. I am a mountain bike trail racer and wouldn't trade it for anything, but I am always one for a new form of bike. So far I have a 27" wheel trike chassis my shop and I made and we are still stuck on how to mount the seat and steering. Our eventual plan is to make an electric motor drive/boost system for 40+ mph cruise. I know it is nothing really new conceptually, but I am trying to figure a way to make the motor operate freewheeling past the crank and vice versa. Any Ideas?
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Old 01-15-05, 06:01 AM   #6
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There is a discussion group about assist here:

Lots of them use hub motors, which might solve some of you problems.

The simplest way to do the steering on a tadpole trike is a lever on each side that is attached direcly to the kingpin, as on a Catrike:
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Old 01-15-05, 08:47 AM   #7
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Old 01-15-05, 11:07 PM   #8
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Are there any serious non-bent bikers that never feel pain?
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Old 01-16-05, 11:55 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by GeezerGeek
Are there any serious non-bent bikers that never feel pain?
I hadn't been on any of my uprights for a couple of months, did thirty miles with the bike club last week on my mt bike cause of snowy stuff, and man that bought back the memories of sore neck etc! last summer I went for a four hundred mile tour on an upright and remember well what I felt like every evening after fifty miles of hilly with fourty pounds of stuff loaded on the bike, can't wait till this summer to tour with my bent. don't really plan on longer days, just know I'll feel much better when I'm setting up camp and maybe will actually feel like doing some hiking or swimming or whatever!
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Old 01-16-05, 01:58 PM   #10
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I can't remember an age that more than 30 miles on an upright did not leave me saddle sore with other assorted aches and pains.

I wish that recumbents had come into my life when I was younger and less damaged goods. Still, they came along in time to give me a good alternative for aerobic fitness as I near 60.

I sometimes suspect that recumbents appeal less to younger riders who want to maintain a specific image. I suppose that I and some others are become a bit immune to image as we age.

If Bentrox and others want to improve that image, I offer no resistance but best of luck. Still, the greatest thing about the recumbent IMO is that I can ride farther in more comfort than I ever thought would be possible again.
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Old 01-17-05, 09:00 PM   #11
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The only reason I rode a DF was that's what the LBS carried. It was a couple of years after I started riding that I noticed a bent on the trail. I was curious but felt too dumb it ask about it. Then I started noticing them in the bike shops, so I rented one. I realized then that I was going to have one someday. The bents I saw however, except for the BikeE weren't cheap. A number of them were over $3000. Heck, my DF was only a couple hundred.
The BikeE could have been a solution, but I felt the ride was too twitchy. So I kept my eyes open for a better bike, that wasn't so expensive and had good riding characteristics. Within, a month of seeing my first Easy Sport at my LBS, I bought one.
I think only about 1 of 100 bikes I see are bents. That to me is the reason more people don't ride em. That and they do cost more.
I ride a bent cause it's fun. I ride because of the enjoyment. I have no pain to boot. If I'd know about them when I was younger, I'd have had one much sooner. Do I think everyone should own one? No. I enjoy being the novelty.
"The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has its limits."
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Old 01-17-05, 10:27 PM   #12
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I've been bent for 1 year 7 months. I got bent when I had medical problems and intended for it to be a temporary thing until I healed. Yea, right! There is no reason why I can't ride uprights and I do ride an upright tandem with my wife, but I prefer my bents.

I have no medical reasons to ride a bent or medical reasons not to ride an upright, just personal preference and a lust for riding reclined.
Dennis T
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