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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 05-12-02, 07:09 PM   #1
Jean Beetham Smith 
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EasyRacer EZ-1

I'm trying to get my husband to ride with me and he has agreed that a recumbent sounds good to him. In the sub $1K group I've only been able to find 3 locally available: BikeE, Lightening Thunderbolt, and the EasyRacer EZ-1. The first 2 are sold in one of the larger stores here, we stood around for an hour there yesterday trying to get someone to get one down for him to try and wound up leaving angry & frustrated. The EZ-1 is sold in a small shop a little further away and we have an appt to go try it next Saturday. The reviews sound fair and since Dan is not a cyclist the low price is appealing as this is sort of a gamble. Has anyone here had experience with this bike and comments that might be useful to us?
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Old 05-12-02, 09:59 PM   #2
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Any recumbent will be a comfortable ride. I don't think any newbie will notice weight, speed or muscle-group considerations, having nothing else to compare it to. A recumbent will not hurt the hynie (sp?) either.

Whatever makes hubby happy will do. My first adult bike served one purpose, to get me hooked and spur my desire for another new bike!

I rode an Ez-1, once--about $500--and loved it; no hills, though...



Who knows, you may get hooked on a recumbent!
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Old 05-17-02, 09:13 PM   #3
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In my opinion, the EZ1 is the most underrated bent on the market today. It's better than the Bike E CT and AT since it is much faster. DO NOT get the steel version of the EZ1 for it weights a ton. Only buy the aluminum EZ1 and you won't regret it. If you going to get a BikeE, the best versions sell for over 1K and make sure they have Primo tires !!!
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Old 05-18-02, 02:35 PM   #4
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Well, we just got back from buying the steel EZ-1. I was able to find a rear fender, taillights, frame pump, tool bag, & grocery bag carrier as well as extra reflectors in assorted bike bits in the basement. So tomorrow, if the downpour stops, we will try our first ride together. Keep your fingers crossed, I was surprised at how quickly Dan adapted to it, my main concern was I didn't see any huge grins. I'm staying off it, this is his bike. Sure looks tempting though.
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Old 05-18-02, 09:06 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jean Beetham Smith
Well, we just got back from buying the steel EZ-1. I was able to find a rear fender, taillights, frame pump, tool bag, & grocery bag carrier as well as extra reflectors in assorted bike bits in the basement.
Got extra?
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So tomorrow, if the downpour stops, we will try our first ride together. Keep your fingers crossed, I was surprised at how quickly Dan adapted to it, my main concern was I didn't see any huge grins.

You aren't supposed to be looking.
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I'm staying off it, this is his bike. Sure looks tempting though.

Sure, you are.

Hey, my 2 cents (not worth counting, these days)--let him beat you a couple of times. Then beat him once.

Lather, rinse, repeat.
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Old 05-20-02, 07:49 PM   #6
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Is this grin OK?
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Old 05-25-02, 05:49 PM   #7
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Originally posted by Dan Smith
Is this grin OK?
Since you can't possibly be Dan Smith who is related to me, you must be someone else...

Please tell me how big that grin gets.
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Old 05-26-02, 05:19 AM   #8
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Since you can't be the LittleBigMan who is related to me, you too must be somebody else.
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Old 05-27-02, 11:10 AM   #9
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So Dan has added a sound system to the bent, today we were riding to music from the "Our Gang" silents. It's very convenient, if I'm ahead of him, but can still hear the music, I don't need to look for him. It is also pleasant when cruising on a quiet suburban road with little traffic. We need to improve the shopping basket feature so the chicken wings don't bounce out, but otherwise the EZ-1 seems to be a winner for us.
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Old 05-30-02, 08:16 PM   #10
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OK, I like it.

Let me explain that I'm a total duffer. I learned to ride a bike when I was in grade school, and all my life I've had some kind of bike but didn't care much about it. I don't race, I don't tour, I don't commute, etc. Whatever bike I've had has always had a regular seat with regular handlebars, even though people explained to me that once I got USED to it I'd find it was really MORE comfortable sit hunched over, craning my neck back if I wanted to see the road head, sitting on a narrow chunk of the tough, unyielding material they use for vandal-resistant bus seats...

Five or six years ago I bought a $250 pseudo-"mountain bike" from the local bike shop. It had fifteen gears, which was eleven more than I ever had before. But I just didn't enjoy riding it much around here. Too many hills, too much traffic, I just didn't ENJOY it. I don't like to stand up on the pedals, I don't like to work hard, I don't like to sweat faster than my self-generated breeze can dry. I don't like being perched up ON TOP OF a bike. Maybe when people rode horses it seemed natural to ride on top of a bike. I drive a car and I want to sit down. I want to be DOWN IN my bike. Oh, and I HATE dismounting in order to stop at an intersection... and I hate trying to ride real slow so I won't have to dismount and then having to dismount anyway.

Well, this $550 recumbent fixes all the things I didn't like. And, by gosh, I was right--my old bike didn't have low enough gears. I can ride slowly up the hills around here without working harder than I feel like working. The seated position feels natural and comfortable. I can stop without dismounting. Oh, and I can stop VERY QUICKLY without worrying about going over the handlebars. And I sorta like being close to the ground, thank you.

The new bike ROLLS better than the old one--I dunno if it's less wind resistance, or something about the smaller wheels, or just a better bike. I was always pumping up the tires on my old bike but it always felt like I was riding through dilute maple syrup... I dunno how much of this is just because a $550 bike in 2002 just has better components than a $200 bike in 1994, or how much has to do with the recumbent design itself.

Let me just put in a good word for Harbor Cycles of Hingham, MA. They had all the right answers to everything, namely (on the phone) "yes, we have one... yes, we have one you can try out," then when I showed up "Hi, Mr. Smith, yes here it is... yes, sure you can take it out in the pouring rain today and ride it..." "What color do you want to order or would you like to take this one?" And the most important one, "Hey, what do I do if I find out after a week that it makes my back hurt or something?" "Oh, you can bring any of our bikes back within 30 days."

Unlike a to-be-nameless shop where we hung around for half an hour unable to get waited on... a shop which supposedly carried the Bike-E and another inexpensive recumbent--but while waiting to be waited on we searched the premises pretty thoroughly and strangely enough they plenty of $1500 and $1600 models but we couldn't spot any $600 models.

Anyway, for any total duffers out there who think a recumbent looks comfortable, well, _I_ like it.

Yeah, it's been a little weird learning how to ride it. It's strange because you do all the same things you do on a regular bike but EVERYTHING is quantitatively DIFFERENT. You turn the handlebars more, you turn them faster... it took me about five minutes to decide I could ride the thing at all, then maybe about an hour at home riding figure eights in an elementary school parking lot before I decided I could steer it, and I haven't quite got it all down yet.

Every kid in the neighborhood thinks it's the coolest thing they've ever seen and I turn a lot of eight-year-old heads riding by. Although I'm not sure whether they're more impressed by the bike or by the red LED blinkers my wife put on the back for me...
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Old 05-14-12, 06:22 PM   #11
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Bike e ct is the best recumbent i have ever ridden

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Originally Posted by Dahon.Steve View Post
In my opinion, the EZ1 is the most underrated bent on the market today. It's better than the Bike E CT and AT since it is much faster. DO NOT get the steel version of the EZ1 for it weights a ton. Only buy the aluminum EZ1 and you won't regret it. If you going to get a BikeE, the best versions sell for over 1K and make sure they have Primo tires !!!
Your opinion of the EZ-1 interests because I have been enjoying the steel version for 4 years. Yesterday, I bought a Bike E CT on consignment because it was brand new and had never been used. It is 11 pounds lighter than the EZ-1 and I am 25% faster on it than I ever was on the EZ-1, I know because I rode it for a metric century within 24 hours of buying it. Even the aluminum version of the EZ-1 appears to be heavier according to the specs. The Bike E CT is amazing and I will probably not want to ride the EZ-1 anymore.
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Old 05-14-12, 07:02 PM   #12
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Bike-E wasn't a bad little bike. IMHO they went under because they tried to go up-scale. Oh, there were other reasons, but I think without over-extending themselves on the upgrades, they could have weathered all of it.

Either the Bike-E or the EZ-1 are good beginner bikes because they're easy to learn. The Lightning is more bike, but has more of a learning curve.
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Old 05-14-12, 10:26 PM   #13
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It seems to me that the most important thing in this thread is that two people are happy! They found what they were looking for and are actually enjoying themselves! Which really seems to be the point of the whole thing! Congrats to both of you, enjoy your newly acquired steeds!
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Old 05-14-12, 10:52 PM   #14
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It seems to me that the most important thing in this thread is that two people are happy! They found what they were looking for and are actually enjoying themselves! Which really seems to be the point of the whole thing! Congrats to both of you, enjoy your newly acquired steeds!
Not so newly acquired now.... hope it's been a good decade.
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Old 05-14-12, 10:55 PM   #15
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Not so newly acquired now.... hope it's been a good decade.
Ha! Details
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Old 05-15-12, 01:38 PM   #16
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Glad to hear hubby is finally riding.

For a front fender for the 16" wheels, I use clip on fenders for the 26" bike. Bolt the L clip on the fork crown hole, then snip a few inches off the longer fender. The arch of the fender maybe off, but it will keep dirt in its place.

I too carry a sound system. I use an mp3 player with a portable speaker powered by AA batts packed into a passport holder bag. I just hang it on my neck.

For front wheel stability - maybe a wider tire like the Big Apples by Schwalbe, or putting more load on the front. Or maybe he just has to recalibrate his riding style and feel. Will come in time.
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Old 05-15-12, 05:53 PM   #17
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Just how many recumbents have you tried out?

It interesting to see this thread resurrected after an entire decade. It is worth noting that BikeE has been gone for nearly that long while the Sun, the maker of the EZ-1 bikes is still in production. I came across a guy riding an EZ-3 trike just this morning. He loves riding it though he has only ridden it 800 miles in the past few years. He recently moved to Vegas from Texas and is now riding daily. I mentioned the weight but he said he didn't really care.

As to the BikeE being the best bike the person who resurrected this post has ever ridden: Just how many recumbents have you tried? I own a BikeE AT which is also the first recumbent I ever rode (and purchased) but it sat unused for years after the 3-speed SACHS hub broke and repair parts were unobtainable for it. I restored it just recently after finding a used hub to switch the guts in the rear wheel. After I got it together, I took it for a spin. A short trip down the block reminded me as to why I soon was in the market for a different recumbent way back when it was my first one. The handling felt really weird compared to my very old Linear or my Haluzak Horizon. It does have some good points - the ability to easily accommodate different sized riders and the no-learning-curve for just hopping on it and taking off. It had a fairly low gear range compared to the other two bikes I mentioned which may be the reason I liked them a lot better. That's true of any bike that has a 20 inch drive wheel, even when coupled with a 3-speed internal hub like the CT and the AT.

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Old 05-16-12, 08:16 AM   #18
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I so love to read a "Lazarus"-type thread
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Old 05-16-12, 07:39 PM   #19
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I'd love to hear from the OP as to what has transpired over the past 10 years.
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Old 05-23-12, 12:08 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Jean Beetham Smith View Post
Well, we just got back from buying the steel EZ-1. I was able to find a rear fender, taillights, frame pump, tool bag, & grocery bag carrier as well as extra reflectors in assorted bike bits in the basement. So tomorrow, if the downpour stops, we will try our first ride together. Keep your fingers crossed, I was surprised at how quickly Dan adapted to it, my main concern was I didn't see any huge grins. I'm staying off it, this is his bike. Sure looks tempting though.
Congratulations, I feel like this post is infinitely more exciting than a new car post.

Edit: I can't believe this thread is a decade old. Crazy. I too would like to see an update of whether or not he became a fan.
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Old 05-23-12, 02:22 PM   #21
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By now Dan is probably on his N + 5th recumbent, a fully socked GRR.
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Old 07-08-12, 10:31 PM   #22
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Newbie forum member here - and just got an EZ 1 yesterday (used, $200 including a hitch mount bike rack). My first bent.

Much like the gent in the thread, I rode in my pre-driver license days for transportation -and vowed when I got a car I'd never ride a bike again! Well, that pretty much held up for a few decades then I got a mountain bike in the 90s. Off road was fun, but I had to ride alone. Not so fun. I have a friend that is a road rider (when the mood strikes) so I cobbled together a 10 speed from bikes collected from the curb over a few trash days.

Fast forward and now I've got kids, wife, job, etc. And a too big belly (but a great big TV in front of the recliner!). My kids want to ride, they now have more trails around here (ok, 1/2 hour drive away) and my youngest officially lost the training wheels over memorial day.

Mountain bike - I like it, the granny gear is handy, but it kills my butt in 5 miles. The road bike I can do 10 miles on (perhaps more, haven't tried) but my wrists and neck dont' like it, and I can't use the drops as my belly gets hammered by my legs too much.

The bent I got off a guy at the campground - he's got a SWB eZ something that he prefers - and I've had one ride so far and well, only my legs hurt (which was expected).
Planning a ride wed morning then I"ll have a better idea of how I like it - so far so good.
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Old 07-09-12, 07:09 AM   #23
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It sounds like you scored! Taking the kids out riding is a win-win. They'll love you for it and you can work on getting rid of the gut. (It's called an 'aerobelly' around here, due to the profile looking like a small fairing.) Aerobellies are heart attacks waiting to happen.
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Old 07-09-12, 08:39 AM   #24
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aerobelly - I like that.
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Old 07-09-12, 07:54 PM   #25
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A functional 'bent plus a hitch mount rack for two hundred bucks is quite a deal.
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