Bike Forums

Bike Forums (http://www.bikeforums.net/forum.php)
-   Recumbent (http://www.bikeforums.net/recumbent/)
-   -   Noob question about LWB recumbents (http://www.bikeforums.net/recumbent/928599-noob-question-about-lwb-recumbents.html)

LordMarv 01-04-14 06:56 PM

Noob question about LWB recumbents
 
Excuse this very basic question...I have no dealer shops in my area, nor have ever seen a LWB here, so I can't just ride one to understand. The handlebars....do folks find holding their arms slightly upwards like that for long periods, fatiguing? I imagine the handlebar angle can be adjusted upwards or downwards, and the seat can be adjusted also. Is this a non-issue, or is this something you just get used to? I've never ridden a bike like those rans, etc, with chopper-like handlebars. Just curious how you folks like them?

BlazingPedals 01-04-14 07:59 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LordMarv (Post 16383173)
Excuse this very basic question...I have no dealer shops in my area, nor have ever seen a LWB here, so I can't just ride one to understand. The handlebars....do folks find holding their arms slightly upwards like that for long periods, fatiguing? I imagine the handlebar angle can be adjusted upwards or downwards, and the seat can be adjusted also. Is this a non-issue, or is this something you just get used to? I've never ridden a bike like those rans, etc, with chopper-like handlebars. Just curious how you folks like them?

The recommended hand position is just about the same as what I was taught was proper for holding the steering wheel of a car. It's not really tiring, because the natural curl of your fingers is enough to keep your hands on the bars. So you're not really expending any effort holding your arms up.

BTW, the chopper bars, like the old Sting-Ray bikes had, are called "Ape Hangers." Some RANS models have what's called "hamster bars" which are more like mountain bike bars but positioned a forearm's length out from the chest.

rydabent 01-05-14 07:47 AM

The so call chopper bar on a Rans Stratus for example can be almost anything you want it to be. It is so completly adjustable almost everyone should be able to find a position that they like.

I adjust the chopper bar on my Stratus so that from the side view the U shaped portion is in line with the headset. This pretty much eliminates any tiller effect. I adjust the span to be just a little wider than my shoulders. This puts me into what some call the "superman" position with my arms almost straight forward. It pretty much eliminates any aero drag of the arms. IMO this makes a big difference when riding into the wind. Yes I am reaching forward with my arms like this, but to me anyway it is not uncomfortable or hard to maintain at all.

Dudelsack 01-05-14 09:19 AM

I usually ride a SWB bent. Last summer I rented a LWB out in Colorado and had no problems, particularly with the hand position. I almost traded my SWB in after that experience.

10 Wheels 01-05-14 09:27 AM

Very Smooth riding bike.

http://i256.photobucket.com/albums/h...heels/Non6.jpg

VegasTriker 01-05-14 11:53 AM

LWB with under seat steering
 
There are still a few under seat steering (USS) long wheelbase recumbent bikes out there - Linear by bentrider sponsor Mr. Bicycleman comes to mind. I own an older 1997 Linear LWB made by the Iowa builder. It came with OSS ape-hanger bars installed and USS parts in a box when I bought it used in 2001. Just for kicks I installed the USS bars while the OSS bars were still on the bike. I liked the USS much better and removed the OSS bars after about 2 weeks. I disliked having my hands up in the air. USS felt much more natural to me. Freaked out a few people as to how I could steer the the bike "no-hands" when they didn't realize it had USS bars. It crashes almost instantly if I really did take both hands off the bars though. It is a reasonably light bike due to the aluminum frame. It gave a very cushy ride but was somewhat like piloting the Queen Mary. I could do a U-turn pretty easily in a very short distance by stopping, planting my feet on the ground and swiveling the bike frame 180 degrees. There were a lot of these made in both LWB and SWB models. I paid $500 for mine and got over 5,000 miles on it before being seduced by my first trike. There are just 3 that show up on CL nationwide, a pair being sold for $375 each (Minneapolis CL) and one for $400 (Austin TX). Two have USS and the third is OSS. The new ones are said to be much improved but cost $$$$. I and a couple friends have a total of 5 Linears, all with USS, some SWB and others LWB. We have all moved on to different recumbents but none of us wishes we hadn't bought an older, used Linear.

10 Wheels 01-05-14 11:59 AM

1 Attachment(s)
They are great for touring.

Lois rode 2300 miles to her 50th HS Class Reunion

http://bikeforums.net/attachment.php...hmentid=358193

JanMM 01-05-14 12:44 PM

Both my RANS single bikes, a SWB and a LWB, have the same B39 tweener bars; my hands/arms are in similar positions on both. Very comfortable.

Balsawings 01-05-14 07:45 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LordMarv (Post 16383173)
Excuse this very basic question...I have no dealer shops in my area, nor have ever seen a LWB here, so I can't just ride one to understand. The handlebars....do folks find holding their arms slightly upwards like that for long periods, fatiguing? I imagine the handlebar angle can be adjusted upwards or downwards, and the seat can be adjusted also. Is this a non-issue, or is this something you just get used to? I've never ridden a bike like those rans, etc, with chopper-like handlebars. Just curious how you folks like them?

Before buying my first LWB, I test rode a Tour Easy and an EZ-3. The Tour Easy was used with OSS and had been set up for the previous owner. The first thing I noticed was a pain in my left elbow. The handlebars were high and had my hands about shoulder high. The EZ-3 had USS and was the most natural and comfortable bike I had ever ridden. I then found my EZ Sport on Craig's list at a price I couldn't pass up. It has OSS steering but I have no problem with any discomfort in my hands, elbows, shoulders or neck. My hands are below my shoulders and my arms fully extended.

The point is that no matter which recumbent you get, you will have to experiment with the handlebar position to find what suits you. The handlebars will only be part of the equation though. You will be adjusting your seating position, the angle of the seat back and possibly other ergonomic factors to get the bike to fit to your needs.

One last suggestion: don't overlook the possibility of going with the Under Seat Steering. Some riders are not comfortable with USS but others like myself find it very natural. Do your research and you may find an LBS that stocks bikes you can test ride. You may have to take a day trip to get to the shop, but it will be worth it when you find the bent that you like.

Bob

LordMarv 01-05-14 11:20 PM

You folks are great, very helpful! I sure do appreciate all the excellent comments. Difficult to tell about LWB riding just looking at the pics sometimes. I'm glad to hear that they are comfortable, and I thank you guys for your comments on the handlebars. And personally, I think that under seat steering would be really cool to try, actually. When the weather and roads cooperate I commute and pleasure ride on a road bike, but I think I am becoming a convert to trikes or LWB bikes. Not in the budget now, but maybe someday. So I'm trying to learn all I can and I appreciate the feedback. Looks like more second hand LWB are available in a decent price range than trikes, so I was just curious. Either one I would love to try...I'm missing out on the fun!

bkaapcke 01-06-14 07:29 AM

I found two problems with stock Easy Racers handle bars that came on my Easy Sport. First, the wrist angles were all wrong and very uncomfortable even on short rides. They are made to clear fairings, not to fit you. Wrong concept for an older rider (mid 50's then). Second, the bars were too short so it took full arm extension to reach them. Over time, this really irritated the tendons in my arms. Very painful.

My solution was to have custom bars made. A friend had the tube bender and the welding skills, so I had well fitting bars in no time. Problem solved. Sometime after that, Rans came out with their three way adjustable "chopper" bars. They solve the same problems easily and at a reasonable cost. bk

Tractortom 01-06-14 07:46 AM

LordMarv, there are a couple other things to consider with under seat vrs. overseat. I have had both in a long wheel base recumbent. The under seat steering is very cool, and is a very natural placement of the hands, but it has a down side. With the over seat steering, there are no linkages involved, and the steering is very positive. Additionally, above seat steering provides a place to hang your 'stuff'. Speedometers, lights, bottle cages, and in my case a fairing that hangs on the bars as well. I will admit that I really like a long wheel base recumbent for time on the road. They ride soft, and have a little bit of springyness to the frame that makes for a soft and comfortable ride, but are stiff enough for a good transfer of power. I really like my Bacchetta Belladare, the newer ones are called a 'Bella'. Good luck with your search.

Tractor Tom in Okeechobee, FL

Retro Grouch 01-06-14 09:51 AM

I have 2 recumbents: A SWB Rans with a flat bar above the seat and a Kettweisel Delta with under seat steering. I like the Rans handlebar better and the longer the ride the more I prefer it.

delcrossv 01-06-14 10:51 AM

I have USS on my '94 Ryan Vanguard. Best bike ever for long distance touring IMO. (it's easy to mount a speedo on the frame in front of you btw). You can look for a used one or for the new equivalent go to longbikes.com

I've found USS to be the best arrangement for "all day in the saddle" riding.

rydabent 01-06-14 12:02 PM

I might mention that there is another minor plus with OSS. They are much easier to guide around with the handle bars up in the usual place. Wind shields would also seem easier to mount with OSS too.

10 Wheels 01-06-14 01:58 PM

Blog.

http://marty-thejerseypedaler.blogspot.com/

Jeff Wills 01-06-14 11:41 PM

I've been riding above-seat-steering recumbents for 23 years (Lightning SWB and Tour Easy/Gold Rush LWB) and my arms rarely felt fatigued. Maybe at the end of a 10 or 12 hour day, but that's just because my whole body was tired. Certainly my friends didn't have problems putting in long days with this ride: http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/ER2005

My wife has tried other bikes, but she keeps coming back to her Easy Racer:

http://home.comcast.net/~jeff_wills/diane-big.jpg

LordMarv 01-07-14 09:30 AM

Holy Cannolies!!! I must lead a sheltered life...I had no idea folks were touring 2000,3000,4000 miles or more on these LWBs!! What an incredible, life-changing experience that must be! And I did see the article about the women who rode her trike across the antarctic recently...but I had no idea folks were riding trikes and LWB/SWB recumbents across Canada, the US, etc. And here I've been dreaming about riding one to the nearest next town, and thinking that was pretty daring...lol! I've got to get my hands on a used one somehow...maybe I could sell one of the kids...

cplager 01-07-14 01:05 PM

I've never ridden a bike with USS (yet!), so I do have one question:

When doing a rapid descent, I very much like having my hands up in front of my face. Do those of you who ride USS find that you don't want to descend as quickly than when you ride OSS bikes? (Or, is this an issue that I've just imagined and has no place in reality?)

delcrossv 01-07-14 04:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cplager (Post 16390688)
I've never ridden a bike with USS (yet!), so I do have one question:

When doing a rapid descent, I very much like having my hands up in front of my face. Do those of you who ride USS find that you don't want to descend as quickly than when you ride OSS bikes? (Or, is this an issue that I've just imagined and has no place in reality?)

No, I descend like a bat outta hell on the Ryan. No worries. Wheeeeee!

Jeff Wills 01-07-14 09:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by LordMarv (Post 16389843)
Holy Cannolies!!! I must lead a sheltered life...I had no idea folks were touring 2000,3000,4000 miles or more on these LWBs!! What an incredible, life-changing experience that must be! And I did see the article about the women who rode her trike across the antarctic recently...but I had no idea folks were riding trikes and LWB/SWB recumbents across Canada, the US, etc. And here I've been dreaming about riding one to the nearest next town, and thinking that was pretty daring...lol! I've got to get my hands on a used one somehow...maybe I could sell one of the kids...


You should follow along with my friend Sylvia: http://www.myrtletheturtle.me/ . She's wandering around Portugal and Spain right now, staying where it's a little warmer.

A friend of mine is going to get dropped off in Missoula and ride here & there in Montana this summer. He rode through last summer and is going back for more: http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/12294

rydabent 01-08-14 08:15 AM

lordmarv

Golly you must be kinda sheltered up there in Mont. Check into the "crazy guy on a bike" internet site. There is one whole sections on bents riding cross country, and another on trikes doing the same. In fact it seem that more and more cross country riders are going to bents for their comfort. They have found that you can put in really long hours on a bent without any pain what so ever. Another reason for touring on bents is that you sit upright, and have full vision of your surroundings, one of the main reasons to do tours.

LordMarv 01-08-14 11:43 AM

yeah, we're kind of out of the way up here, and pretty underpopulated compared to the rest of the country. I'm in the largest town, Billings, which has about 110,000 people. Two good bike shops here but I've not seen any bents in them. We have alot of paved paths, but they are disconnected in alot of places, We just had some bike paths painted in on a few long streets a few years back...so its a start. Not many bike commuters, but it's growing. I imagine there may be a few folks with trikes up here, just haven't seen them. And as for LWBs...I had seen pictures in the past, but assumed they were, you know, more like novelty bikes, kind of like stretched out beach cruisers, or home project bikes. Wasn't till I started researching that I began to find out otherwise. I know I'd get serious looks if I rode one around here.

Doug5150 01-08-14 12:40 PM

I have a LWB with the RANS chopper bars on it. They seemed a bit wide so I clamped on some MTB angled bar ends pointing inwards, on the RANS bars just inside the brake lever hoods.
The MTB bar-end tips are almost touching (about 1 inch apart) but this gives me a "hamster" bar grip that is nicer to use on long rides. That is how I usually ride cruising in rural areas where I know I won't need to reach the brakes or gears suddenly.

wbuttry 01-27-14 09:49 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Quote:

Originally Posted by Jeff Wills (Post 16389120)
I've been riding above-seat-steering recumbents for 23 years (Lightning SWB and Tour Easy/Gold Rush LWB) and my arms rarely felt fatigued. Maybe at the end of a 10 or 12 hour day, but that's just because my whole body was tired. Certainly my friends didn't have problems putting in long days with this ride: http://www.crazyguyonabike.com/doc/ER2005

My wife has tried other bikes, but she keeps coming back to her Easy Racer:

http://home.comcast.net/~jeff_wills/diane-big.jpg

lord marv a recumbent is the way to go. Do u get saddle sore ? or sore wrist? I did that's why I chose a recumbent I got a tour easy clone like this one the lady is on they are awesome I got mine for under 600$ but you can get one for under 800 through recycled recumbents here is his website https://sites.google.com/site/recycledrecumbents/ but here is a pic of mine ready to go on a trip. And the only reason I got mine so cheap cause I ordered the frame and had most of the parts already to get it together . He has lwb and swb ready to go he ships them to you actually very cheaply and yes just to let you know it takes a little getting used to riding leg muscles mainly .And it will take a while to get rid of that recumbent smile ...


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:15 AM.