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  1. #26
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    Ooops, my eyes must have deceived me. You're right, the Burleys don't have suspended convertibles. I guess that must have been wishful thinking on my part. I'll go edit the post so no one else gets confused...


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    The smaller rear wheel would give you a lower gear range for climbing hills woud'nt it?
    No because the gears compensate for it--usually with bigger chain rings on the front. But again, the rear derailleur is closer to the ground, so that's a disadvantage.


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    Wade Hatler rode his Streetmachine all over the World including Vietnam and around Australia so it must be allright. Bad car drivers are bad car drivers no matter what bike you are on surely?
    I think I've read his travelogue and seen pictures of him riding through some city on his back--not something I'd feel comfortable doing. It's just an uneasy feeling when cars fly past your head while lying supine. And it induces comments like "Hey wake-up buddy, nap-time is over!"

    That said, it's good for covering large distances because it's extremely comfortable. I've ridden it plenty. Your body won't fatigue easily. And agian, that seat extension will help keep things a bit more upright if need be. Plus, the lowrider rack is awsome. I have a somewhat wide skeletal structure, so the steering bar feels a bit narrow for me during tight, low-speed cornering. Plus, I experience the tipping forward effect that I mentioned. But maybe those things are only specific to me. All-in-all, it's a top quality bike and balances loads well. As long as you're ok with riding it in Oz traffic, I'm sure you'd be happy with it.

    By the way, just for fun, the 'bent you are looking for actually does exist--at least based on the suspended SWB w/USS criteria. Problem is, I don't think you can get it in the US. http://www.ostrad.de/ostrad/presto.html#

    Cheers,
    NR

  2. #27
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    NAZCAR wrote, that seat extension will help keep things a bit more upright if need be.
    what Seat extension?

    NAZCAR wrote, Plus, I experience the tipping forward effect that I mentioned.
    I Didnt quite understand that.

    NAZCAR wrote, All-in-all, it's a top quality bike.
    I presume you are talking about the Sreetmachine?

    I should make myself clearer, it is not the traffic in towns thats the problem its the trucks and drivers on the highways, and the narrow verges of the third-world roads that create danger.
    Max.

  3. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by NazcaRider
    By the way, just for fun, the 'bent you are looking for actually does exist--at least based on the suspended SWB w/USS criteria. Problem is, I don't think you can get it in the US. http://www.ostrad.de/ostrad/presto.html#
    FWIW Angletech Cycle in Colorado is showing a LWB Ostrad. Scroll down:

    http://www.angletechcycles.com/trades.htm

  4. #29
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    Thanx John Riley,

    Yes that is an interesting site but unfortuneatly I cant find an English version.

    The Ostrad also looks cool but once again is LWB.

    I did look at the Angletech Altitude but man are they expensive! $US3,500!

    Thats $4,500 Australian dollars. I can get a Velo STM Alloy Gte with Rohloff hub, rack and Disc brakes for that!

    Still Collating thanks for all the input.

    Clear Skies Max.

  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    what Seat extension?
    If you google for 'hp velotechnik seat extension' you'll find it at the Hostel Shoppe website--should be the first hit in google. Or just go to Hostel Shoppe directly and search from there. I couldn't get the link to post here correctly.


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    NAZCAR wrote, Plus, I experience the tipping forward effect that I mentioned.
    I Didnt quite understand that.
    The SM is a very short wheelbase SWB. Maybe you already know that the SM has direct steering, which means it doesn't use a steering rod to connect the handlebar to the fork. Instead, the handlebar mounts directly to the headset like on a regular bicycle. To enable this, the front wheel (and headset) must be positioned close to the rider. In fact, to me, the front wheel almost feels like it is directly underneath my butt. And when I hit the brakes hard, the back wheel lifts off the ground.

    It's sort of a peculiar trait of the SM, however the advantage is that it helps to distribute heavy loads (rider & panniers) more evenly between the front and back wheel. Conversely, on longer wheelbase bents (usually those with indirect steering), the load is concentrated closer to the back wheel, which isn't particularly good.


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    NAZCAR wrote, All-in-all, it's a top quality bike.
    I presume you are talking about the Sreetmachine?
    Yes.


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    I should make myself clearer, it is not the traffic in towns thats the problem its the trucks and drivers on the highways, and the narrow verges of the third-world roads that create danger.
    Ok, I understand what you mean now. The SM will have a small profile when seen from behind by motorists. A flag or some other type of 'attention getter' on a pole would be a good idea. From afar, motorists might associate it with a pull-behind child trailer and drive more cautiously. But then again, the way you described Oz drivers, maybe they'll see it as a 'fun' target and swerve toward you instead

    NR
    Last edited by NazcaRider; 02-19-05 at 04:04 PM.

  6. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by john riley
    FWIW Angletech Cycle in Colorado is showing a LWB Ostrad. Scroll down:
    http://www.angletechcycles.com/trades.htm
    I've heard the Ostrad LWB is quite comfortable, however it looks like it has a very small seat bottom. Maybe looks can be deceiving? The front fork is interesting. Possibly with elastometer, but I can't remember exactly. I live near Berlin, so maybe I should go test ride them some day.

    NR

  7. #32
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    FWIW the HP Velo Grasshopper is available with linkage USS. HP Velo probably has the best suspension of bikes available in the US:

    http://www.hpvelotechnik.com/produkt...details_e.html

  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    I am going to buy a SWB Touring Bent but I do'nt really like the idea of a small front wheel. Not much I can do about that as choice is limited for the above, ie, most 26' x 26" models are advertised as "Highracers" not touring bikes.
    I would like a fully-suspended bike but all of those have brackets above the hip, too high for me.
    A lot of guys complain about that little dicky front wheel bouncing around on bumps.
    Does front suspension help this problem?
    Clear Skies, Max.
    I think Challenge's highracer Seiran, a 26" x 26" model has the advantage of both front and back suspension available. Furthermore you can equip it with huge lowracerbags of "banana" type. I tried one in Denmark the other day and I must say it is a bike even for short people like me (174 cm). The seatposition is absolutely fantastic and you can choose OSS or USS if you like.

  9. #34
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    to ERIC FORSGREN,
    Thanks Eric for showing me this bike. I do'nt know why I have never seen it before because I have been researching bents for nearly two years.
    POSITIVE;-
    First, I like the way it looks, thats important because we are only human.
    It has internal cable runs.
    It has a wheelbase of 49.6" right on the borderline between SWB and CLWB, that's perfect, and unusual.
    Option of front suspension. Yes please.
    It's ALLOY frame, so is the included rear rack, wheel rims, stays and forks
    Comes with standard disc brakes.
    Has easy-to-get 26" tyres (tires).
    It's only 34lbs, light for a 26 Bent like this. (A Velo STM-GT is 40 lbs plus with racks etc).
    It has USS. And if you want OSS it has a tilt-tiller which can also be user-shortened for custom fit, that's also unique.
    Personal dislikes, (maybe),
    Seat position not very upright.
    HP style seat may have too small buttock pan for upright position.
    Bottom bracket a tad high for old guys like me to ride all day as speed is not important for touring.
    Has "Old-Style" vertically-oriented gas shock design which causes "Pogo" effect when climbing.
    At least $3000 Australian dollars. Plus Extras,Tax and Freight $?
    It,s late here now so I will continue research in the morning.
    Goodnight, Max.

  10. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    to ERIC FORSGREN,
    Thanks Eric for showing me this bike. I do'nt know why I have never seen it before because I have been researching bents for nearly two years.
    POSITIVE;-
    First, I like the way it looks, thats important because we are only human.
    It has internal cable runs.
    It has a wheelbase of 49.6" right on the borderline between SWB and CLWB, that's perfect, and unusual.
    Option of front suspension. Yes please.
    It's ALLOY frame, so is the included rear rack, wheel rims, stays and forks
    Comes with standard disc brakes.
    Has easy-to-get 26" tyres (tires).
    It's only 34lbs, light for a 26 Bent like this. (A Velo STM-GT is 40 lbs plus with racks etc).
    It has USS. And if you want OSS it has a tilt-tiller which can also be user-shortened for custom fit, that's also unique.
    Personal dislikes, (maybe),
    Seat position not very upright.
    HP style seat may have too small buttock pan for upright position.
    Bottom bracket a tad high for old guys like me to ride all day as speed is not important for touring.
    Has "Old-Style" vertically-oriented gas shock design which causes "Pogo" effect when climbing.
    At least $3000 Australian dollars. Plus Extras,Tax and Freight $?
    It,s late here now so I will continue research in the morning.
    Goodnight, Max.
    Don't you worry about the seat-angle! When you get used to it you will hardly notice the difference. The seat-height is sufficient for a good visibility and you will certainly not get a recumbentbutt. Furthermore you can vary the seat-angle so that you get an almost upright position.

  11. #36
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    ERIC, Well I did some more looking today but there is almost no information on the web except for the makers website. Maybe it is too new for reviews or articles by owners.
    The good news is The Bicycle Man (Peter Stull) is the Challenge dealer and he is the guy I am buying my Bent from.
    But I ca'nt ask Peter anymore questions because he already answered a thousand stupid questions so far.
    It would be good to know how long it takes to get a Challenge in the USA after you have ordered it?
    But it looks nice and not so old as the STM which has been around for 10 years.
    Max.

  12. #37
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    Well, after looking at it some more I like it, BUT, the design still comes from a company that has always made "Racer" breeds, and the Bottom Bracket is still above the hip, which may be too high for comfortable all-day touring for average people.
    That's why Bents like the RANS V2 and STRATUS are so popular.
    All the Challenge website photos show young athletic people riding the Challenge bikes, but it is the older people who have the money to buy expensive recumbents.
    Unloaded, I'm sure it is fast with its small frontal drag high bracket, but not when you have lots of bags strapped on.
    And low frontal drag is not important at touring speeds that average 12 MPH.
    Maybe I'm wrong, but I think the Sieran is still a racing road bike being marketed as a Tourer.
    I would love to read some reviews from owners that are not twenty-something and have used them for touring.
    Thank-You, Max.

  13. #38
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    Max,

    I'd have to agree that the Seiran--as well as most Dutch 'bents--probably wouldn't suit your needs. That's not to say they don't make fine products. Their designs really are very appealing...especially if you live in Holland where the landscape is flat with strong headwinds. Of course, Dutch recumbent builders seem to think the whole world is that way. That's basically why I needed to perform some major alterations on my own Dutch-made bike to make it suitable for riding outside of Holland.

    I didn't mean to sound overly negative about the SM; I was only trying to present a balanced perspective (both good and bad). It might actually be a good choice for you. After all, it's a very 'complete' package designed specifically for touring. No alterations necessary. My only cautionary note would be to try it first to make sure you're larger body frame fits on it comfortably--because that's where I had problems with it.

    All the best...
    NR
    Last edited by NazcaRider; 02-21-05 at 04:52 PM.

  14. #39
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    Yeah OK, the optional seat pan for the SM looks like a good idea for me as I did think that the standard HP base looked tiny, even though my butt is not a big one. It's probably because the Velo ppl expect you to want to lie back a lot.
    I still like it although it is fairly heavy, maybe they are made from the melted-down Panzer Tanks?

    I like the 26" Bents like the RANS F5-LE, the Burley Giro 26" and the Challenge Sieran but the brackets have to be high to avoid pedal strike on the large 26" front wheel.
    So you just ca'nt get a 26x26 that does not have a high bracket

    The search continues...

  15. #40
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    BTW this seems to be the US distributor. He can answer any questions about the line.

    http://www.eurdis.com/id11.html

  16. #41
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    Do I interpret this correctly that the Challenge Seiran has only 18 speeds?
    Plenty for flat Holland I guess but not enough for the countries with mountains.

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    I still like it although it is fairly heavy, maybe they are made from the melted-down Panzer Tanks?
    That could be! They don't seem to be using them for anything else these days

    But seriously, many manufacturers list extremely low weight figures. But those figures are usually based on stripped versions of their bents -- no racks, super light tires, no fenders, no lights, no pedals, non-suspension front fork, etc. The StreetMachine is listed "from 15,2 kgs incl. pedals" That's 33.5lbs.

    However, my 'bent which is similar to the StreetMachine actually weighs 46lbs/21kg with customized heavy-duty travel rack, fenders with mud flaps, two aluminum water bottles, front and back suspension, lights and generator, beefy Schwalbe Marathon tires so I don't get flats and heavy duty rims. I don't think you can avoid these extra lbs/kgs if you plan to tour suspended.

    My longest day-ride has been 140mi/225km. Plus, I can climb hills all day long, no problem. In my opinion, comfort is everything and weight is far less important. Of course, I weigh 215lbs/95kg, so any weight saved on the bike would be a very small percentage of the overall weight(bike + me).


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    I like the 26" Bents like the RANS F5-LE, the Burley Giro 26" and the Challenge Sieran but the brackets have to be high to avoid pedal strike on the large 26" front wheel. So you just ca'nt get a 26x26 that does not have a high bracket
    This is the only 26/26 I'd consider touring on...
    http://www.lightfootcycles.com/ramodel.htm

    NR
    Last edited by NazcaRider; 02-22-05 at 03:38 PM.

  18. #43
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    Yes, NAZCARider, I agree with everything you said about weight.
    My inspirational Touring Guru (Wade Hatler) who has ridden his SM Bent all over the World says its silly to try and shave a couple of pounds of your Bike/Load because you wo'nt really notice it once you are in good touring fitness. He often travels with nearly 100 Lbs of gear including a 3Kg laptop.

    Of course Wade does seem to be an exceptional hillclimber. But the fact that his SM was able to handle all that weight without any structural failures must say something about the robust strength of the SM.
    The only improvement to the SM Wade suggested was to get the Rohloff hub option. He said he spent a lot of time fiddling with and adjusting his stock cables and derraiulers (I can never spell that) and if the Rohloff hub eliminated all that constant adjustment it would be worth the extra cost.

    It's interesting what you say about Schwalbe Marathon tires, I must investigate those, are they smooth or knobby? I hate the noise knobby tires make. I also hate flats, so heavier tires are worth it. One of the reasons I'm using a trailer is to avoid flats.

    The lightfoot Ranger looks like an excellent 26 Tourer. Just a bit too large to ship back to Australia easily.

    In case the snow is chilling you too much I am sending you a link to my local BeachCam. It changes views every minute or so. Notice the water temp is around 26C

    http://www.coastalwatch.com/cam.asp?cam=2200

    Have a good one, Mark.

  19. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    He often travels with nearly 100 Lbs of gear including a 3Kg laptop.
    Wow, that sounds like a lot. I've probably toured with close to that amount. Who knows, maybe even more? I never actually weighed my whole rig. One advantage the SM has over my Nazca is that it balances loads better between front and back wheels. So, I'm also thinking about using a trailer in the future -- possibly a two-wheeled model like the Cyclone. http://www.radicaldesign.nl/en/cyclone_trailers.html


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    Of course Wade does seem to be an exceptional hillclimber.
    With normal mountain bike gears--22T-front and 34T-rear--you should be able to climb anything, even loaded. However, at that speed it might be faster pushing .


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    The only improvement to the SM Wade suggested was to get the Rohloff hub option.
    Excellent choice.


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    It's interesting what you say about Schwalbe Marathon tires, I must investigate those, are they smooth or knobby?
    They're very smooth for touring and road riding -- can even handle light trails, but don't have the knobby-ness for serious mud. They even have a recumbent category on their website. Same tires as for normal bikes though, so it's just a logical grouping. http://www.schwalbetires.com/

    If touring with loads, I'd recommend size-1.5. If using a trailer, then perhaps size-1.35 might suffice.


    Quote Originally Posted by SkyMax
    Just a bit too large to ship back to Australia easily.
    Have you considered S&S couplings?

    I have no experience with them, however they seem popular. And they might expand your choice of bikes to include CLWB. It probably wouldn't be practical to fold between rides though. So if you don't have space at home, then it's probably not the answer.

    Nice weather down there! We have snow here, which is fine. It's that in-between phase with cold rain that I find nasty.

    NR

  20. #45
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    This is the trailer I like. Maybe not fancy-looking but has a practical even shape for holding more gear and has 20" wheels, so one less size to carry a spare tube and tire for.
    Has the fastest and easiest connection system.
    Loved by all that use them.

    http://www.quik-pak.com/Quik-Pak%20b...20trailer.html

  21. #46
    Senior Member SkyMax's Avatar
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    You've got to be kidding! $840 for a trailer with plastic wheels!
    That's more than double the price of the Quick-Pak or the Burley Nomad

    Yes it can be slow pedalling with a load but thats better than trying to push a Bent with USS up a hill , because with USS there is no handle bar to hold onto and steer with.
    As long as you keep moving it's OK.

    With the Schwalbe tires, do you use the Marathon or Marathon Plus?
    Last edited by SkyMax; 02-24-05 at 02:16 PM.

  22. #47
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    Well the opinion on the lwb not needing suspension,,I assume youre talking about the front,,but they really benefit from rear suspension,,esp those who put the seat back,,and are near the rear wheel. I have a limbo with an rst fork,,and its fine,,its quite cushy and the front doesnt seem to contribute to pogo at all. Have fun with your new bike.

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