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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 02-11-05, 01:37 AM   #1
tkehler
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I. Want. More. Speed.

I am the owner of a good beginner 'bent, the EZ-Speedster. (I have the middle model, not the top of the line aluminum one, nor the bottom of the line, heavy cromoly one.)

Kenda tires, 1.5; mediocre SRAM shifters, no fairing (yet).

Now, here's the situation: I would like to go faster. Short of getting an Bacc. Aero (my dream bent) or a lowracer of something -- and short of working on the engine more than I already am (I'm jogging a few km a day, and riding a couple times a week, and doing 400-500 stairs twice a week) -- what can I do to make the 'bent go faster?

My own thoughts so far:

- get better, lighter, more aerodynamic wheels
- switch to a thinner tire, maybe a Marathon
- fairing and/or tail fairing
- start saving for a pricey lighter bent
- ??

Advice and tips greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 02-11-05, 06:57 AM   #2
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I saw something on TV once called an ACME rocket motor. It was used by a fellow named Coyote to make his bike faster.
You might want to google that.
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Old 02-11-05, 10:18 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkehler
Now, here's the situation: I would like to go faster. Short of getting an Bacc. Aero (my dream bent) or a lowracer of something -- and short of working on the engine more than I already am (I'm jogging a few km a day, and riding a couple times a week, and doing 400-500 stairs twice a week) -- what can I do to make the 'bent go faster?

My own thoughts so far:

- get better, lighter, more aerodynamic wheels
- switch to a thinner tire, maybe a Marathon
- fairing and/or tail fairing
- start saving for a pricey lighter bent
- ??
Your bent will be somewhat faster with your upgrades. But the bent will never keep up with an equally powered person on an Aero. That's just the way it is. Your bent is actually well suited for touring or commuting as opposed to setting a speed record.

If you are new to recumbents, give yourself 6 months for your muscles to get acclimated to bent riding. Also, take my advice: if you aren't happy now with that bike, don't upgrade. Buy one that does what you want. I know this from experience.
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Old 02-11-05, 11:24 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by bentcruiser
... Also, take my advice: if you aren't happy now with that bike, don't upgrade. Buy one that does what you want. I know this from experience.
Yes! That's very good advice. Sorry to hear you learned it the hard way. To misquote someone else, "You can train a pig to run; but it'll never be a racehorse, just a fast pig." It's OK to spend a few bucks on some tires. Get a Comet 20x1.3 for the front and a Racer 26x1.25 for the rear. Tires are 'consumables,' so it's not like you'd be pouring good money after bad. But DON'T waste money buying a new wheelset or a fairing.

Start saving up! Don't worry, you don't have to go all the way to Titanium to go fast, a Corsa would go just fine.
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Old 02-11-05, 08:00 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrEWorm
I saw something on TV once called an ACME rocket motor. It was used by a fellow named Coyote to make his bike faster.
You might want to google that.

Very amusing. I know where I'd like to stick that rocket.
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Old 02-11-05, 08:06 PM   #6
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Thanks for the (serious) comments, which I really appreciate. Esp. the one about not trying to upgrade my bent (except for getting different tires). That's very good advice. It will simply be a slightly faster EZ-Speedster.

Cheers.
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Old 02-11-05, 08:32 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by tkehler
Very amusing. I know where I'd like to stick that rocket.
Didn't the rocket always end up there, anyway?
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Old 02-11-05, 08:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkehler
I am the owner of a good beginner 'bent, the EZ-Speedster. (I have the middle model, not the top of the line aluminum one, nor the bottom of the line, heavy cromoly one.)

Kenda tires, 1.5; mediocre SRAM shifters, no fairing (yet).

Now, here's the situation: I would like to go faster. Short of getting an Bacc. Aero (my dream bent) or a lowracer of something -- and short of working on the engine more than I already am (I'm jogging a few km a day, and riding a couple times a week, and doing 400-500 stairs twice a week) -- what can I do to make the 'bent go faster?

My own thoughts so far:

- get better, lighter, more aerodynamic wheels
- switch to a thinner tire, maybe a Marathon
- fairing and/or tail fairing
- start saving for a pricey lighter bent
- ??

Advice and tips greatly appreciated. Thanks.
Here's a different version of that question:

My cheap beginner bent (that I bought last September) is a 28 pound Tsunami T-1 SWB with road tires, so it's probably as fast as $650 will get you (on a bent, that is). I'm already wanting something faster, but my budget won't allow my dream bike for another 3 1/2 years when my boat gets paid for (my other expensive hobby is tournament fishing). On top of that, I'm not sure what my dream bike needs to be. I want very fast, but something better in traffic and stop and go riding than either a low rider or high racer, and I prefer USS which is not as fast. To all the experts here: What does my dream bike need to be?
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Old 02-11-05, 09:05 PM   #9
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I gained 2mph down hill going from the stock 1.5" 35psi rea tire to 1.5 (wanted smaller) 100 psi amadillo. not sure if there was much difference going from about 25psi to 100 in front.
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Old 02-12-05, 09:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bud Bent
... I want very fast, but something better in traffic and stop and go riding than either a low rider or high racer, and I prefer USS which is not as fast. To all the experts here: What does my dream bike need to be?
For fast USS, you're looking at a Reynolds. For being good in stop-and-go traffic, you want something else. How's that for helpful? Actually, a highracer would be fine in traffic, once you learned to ride it. But most are OSS.

To Steve: Were your tires rated for 25-35 psi, or is that just where you ran them? Most HiPerf tires have their best rolling resistance near their rated pressure, and don't exibit any gains in performance at overpressures. For a 1.5" tire, I would expect pressures of around 80-90 psi to be high enough without worrying about spreading your rims.
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Old 02-12-05, 02:12 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals
Didn't the rocket always end up there, anyway?
Hard to tell! The dust from the bottom of the canyon where Wile landed always obscured the view.
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Old 02-12-05, 02:18 PM   #12
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Actually, one way of improving speed is to get SPD pedals.

Here's the link to George Reynolds, for those who would like to read about fast 'bents.


http://www.reynoldsweldlabs.com/index.htm
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Old 02-12-05, 06:56 PM   #13
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To Steve: Were your tires rated for 25-35 psi, or is that just where you ran them? Most HiPerf tires have their best rolling resistance near their rated pressure, and don't exibit any gains in performance at overpressures. For a 1.5" tire, I would expect pressures of around 80-90 psi to be high enough without worrying about spreading your rims.[/QUOTE]

yes only 35 PSI. plus I got two flats in three months so I changed tires and the new one can take 100 PSI. I have a velocity deep v I doubt 100 PSI would hurt it (G)
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Old 02-13-05, 08:19 AM   #14
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You Got the Need...

http://www.aardvark.co.nz/pjet/

Bolt one of these on and you'll get some speed!
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Old 02-14-05, 02:24 PM   #15
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Me Too! I ride a Burley Jett Creek that works well for my road conditions. I got 2-3 more mph by adjusting the seat position, buying some Power Grips for the pedals and overinflating my tires...Kenda West by 5-10#. If I bought a faster bike, I'm afraid I'd spend more time fixing flat tires than enjoying the ride. I suspect I might even gain another couple mph as my engine improves.

Bob
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Old 02-14-05, 04:08 PM   #16
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The most cost effective improvement for speed is a fairing.....10 to 20 percent increase in speed/or decrease in effort. If you take care of the fairing its very easy to re-sell it.

RonH
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Old 02-14-05, 04:17 PM   #17
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gee, my last fairing was over 500 bucks and yes it will make you faster, but 20% .........I don't think so. A Razz FAzz fairing won't give you that. Now if we are talking about a full hardshelled fairing around the whole bike, then yes that would give you more than 20%.
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Old 02-14-05, 08:52 PM   #18
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The most cost effective improvement for speed is a fairing.....10 to 20 percent increase in speed/or decrease in effort. If you take care of the fairing its very easy to re-sell it.

RonH
only if you go atleast 18 mph or more. the faster you go the more it helps.
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Old 02-15-05, 02:47 PM   #19
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ok, so anybody want to buy an optima tailfairing then if it is so easy to sell it?http://groups.msn.com/BicyclingForum...o&PhotoID=5009
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Old 02-15-05, 03:02 PM   #20
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Does this mean you're building one this year? Hey, maybe after my highracer is done I'll try my hand at tailboxes. Can't be too hard.
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Old 02-15-05, 03:42 PM   #21
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nah. kamil is building me one. I don't have the time to build one right now.
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Old 02-18-05, 05:40 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkehler
I am the owner of a good beginner 'bent, the EZ-Speedster. (I have the middle model, not the top of the line aluminum one, nor the bottom of the line, heavy cromoly one.)

Kenda tires, 1.5; mediocre SRAM shifters, no fairing (yet).

Now, here's the situation: I would like to go faster. Short of getting an Bacc. Aero (my dream bent) or a lowracer of something -- and short of working on the engine more than I already am (I'm jogging a few km a day, and riding a couple times a week, and doing 400-500 stairs twice a week) -- what can I do to make the 'bent go faster?

My own thoughts so far:

- get better, lighter, more aerodynamic wheels
- switch to a thinner tire, maybe a Marathon
- fairing and/or tail fairing
- start saving for a pricey lighter bent
- ??

Advice and tips greatly appreciated. Thanks.
If you want speed, then try a bike like this, or low racer.
My bike is a 2004 Volae Sport, and i took it out for a spin and was very impress how it can climb hills and the speed on flat ground was around 30 mph...and i have not been on a bike for 2 years, till this year..

My First Recumbent Was a{**2002 Vision R40 {**All i got was pain on hills and numb feet.. I did not like a 20 inch wheel, in frount of bike. Now that i have got a bike with dual wheel, i feel really good that i have got this one...

Make sure you test many bikes before you dump a bunch of money in one, i made my mistake geting the last Recumbent!

Good Hunting, Time to save up and buy your Dream Bike!



Tom

Last edited by volae; 02-18-05 at 05:51 PM.
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Old 02-18-05, 07:46 PM   #23
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If you want speed, then try a bike like this, or low racer.
Here's mine at rest last Thanksgiving...




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Old 02-18-05, 07:47 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveknight
only if you go atleast 18 mph or more. the faster you go the more it helps.
I second the fairing recommendation. A full fairing and bodysock (not just a tail fairing) is your best performance/price option. And steveknight is right--only above 18 mph. But if you are not trying to break 20 mph as your average (excluding hills) then that's not "fast" in my book.


Cheers,

Bill.
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Old 02-18-05, 11:17 PM   #25
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Here's mine at rest last Thanksgiving...




Do you like the Bacchetta Aero or the Volae Team better?
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