Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > Recumbent
Reload this Page >

What is the Purpose of the Recumbent Bikes?

Notices
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.

What is the Purpose of the Recumbent Bikes?

Old 10-02-19, 05:46 AM
  #26  
Trsnrtr
Super Moderator
 
Trsnrtr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 18,655

Bikes: Giant Propel, Gianni Motta, Co-Motion Supremo, ICE VTX, Garneau Steeple X

Mentioned: 101 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7430 Post(s)
Liked 821 Times in 445 Posts
Originally Posted by Steamer View Post
Yeah, BUT....
...that’s not what he said.

He said, “...trikes are not very much wider than the handle bars on a DF bike.”

I was just being pedantic, surely you can understand that, Tom.
__________________
Dennis T

I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I can't believe the ignorance out there. - An Anonymous Addictionite.


Last edited by Trsnrtr; 10-02-19 at 05:49 AM.
Trsnrtr is offline  
Old 10-02-19, 09:02 AM
  #27  
Steamer
Zircon Encrusted Tweezers
 
Steamer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: high ground
Posts: 1,180
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 182 Post(s)
Liked 42 Times in 29 Posts
Originally Posted by Trsnrtr View Post
...that’s not what he said.

He said, “...trikes are not very much wider than the handle bars on a DF bike.”

I was just being pedantic, surely you can understand that, Tom.
Equally pedantically, I will point out for the record that I did concede a "yeah" to your point about DF bar widths vs. trike widths.

Mr. Rydabent and Mr. Robnol have each certainly found their own versions of cycling religion. It seemingly distorts what should be an uncontroversial, objective subject (i.e the easily measurable width of things, such as handlebars, people's shoulders, and trikes).
Steamer is offline  
Old 10-02-19, 10:24 AM
  #28  
cat0020
Ride more, eat less
 
cat0020's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Philla PA, Hoboken NJ, Brooklyn NY
Posts: 995

Bikes: Too many but never enough.

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 269 Post(s)
Liked 51 Times in 40 Posts
Originally Posted by downtube42 View Post
Funny. I've been fighting off n+1 for a while, and finally caved and bought a 27.5 Plus MTB. Because I don't already have a MTB in the stable. So it's fun and all, messing around on trails with absurdly wide tires, but I'm wondering to myself...

WTF is this thing actually for? Clearly, it's a toy.

Now my 'bent, there's no doubt what it's for: long distance road rides. A brevet machine; 200ks are training rides. At the end of a 1000k earlier this month, I finished tired but with no sore spots.
For most motorists, (drivers); bicycles and motorcycles are just toys, don't belong on public roads, roads are for cars.
cat0020 is offline  
Likes For cat0020:
Old 10-02-19, 10:55 AM
  #29  
Trsnrtr
Super Moderator
 
Trsnrtr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 18,655

Bikes: Giant Propel, Gianni Motta, Co-Motion Supremo, ICE VTX, Garneau Steeple X

Mentioned: 101 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7430 Post(s)
Liked 821 Times in 445 Posts
Originally Posted by Steamer View Post
Equally pedantically,
We've earned it.
__________________
Dennis T

I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I can't believe the ignorance out there. - An Anonymous Addictionite.

Trsnrtr is offline  
Old 10-02-19, 02:59 PM
  #30  
Lightning Pilot
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Peoples Democratic Socialist Republic of Madiganistan (formerly known as Illinois)
Posts: 113

Bikes: Lightning P-38

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 48 Post(s)
Liked 31 Times in 25 Posts
Originally Posted by Trsnrtr View Post
Every trike I've owned has been 30-31" wide. An average drop handlebar is only 16.5" - 17".
Originally Posted by Steamer View Post
Yeah, BUT....

I find the center of my body is in the same place on the road no matter what I am riding. On a trike I can safely put my right wheel closer to the road edge.

And the track of my trikes isn't much wider than my shoulders. So the trike adds only about 2 or 3 inches, at most, of additional intrusion into the lane.
I have to agree that trikes, on a whole, are wider than uprights. I don't think that's a particular safety issue. However, every recumbent trike I've seen is lower than the average two wheeled bent, and I think that's critical. The rider is lower and less visible, as well as having less ability to see. Basically, I view anything that reduces the visibility of a bike and rider is a negative thing. I really think visibility is the key factor. A car driver cannot avoid what they do not see, and may not avoid what they see poorly.

My solution for my wife's trike is a tubular aluminum staff ~5 feet high. On the top are four bright lights facing to either side, front, and back. This is in addition to another light facing forward, and two more mounted on her helmet. The staff itself is fabricated from old tent tubing—very strong, stiff enough but still flexible. Even if the driver cannot see the trike or her past the curve of the car body, the lights will be at or near eye level and still visible.

Paranoid? Who? Me? You're darn right I am!
Lightning Pilot is offline  
Old 10-02-19, 06:03 PM
  #31  
Steamer
Zircon Encrusted Tweezers
 
Steamer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: high ground
Posts: 1,180
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 182 Post(s)
Liked 42 Times in 29 Posts
Originally Posted by Lightning Pilot View Post
I have to agree that trikes, on a whole, are wider than uprights. I don't think that's a particular safety issue. However, every recumbent trike I've seen is lower than the average two wheeled bent, and I think that's critical. The rider is lower and less visible, as well as having less ability to see. Basically, I view anything that reduces the visibility of a bike and rider is a negative thing. I really think visibility is the key factor. A car driver cannot avoid what they do not see, and may not avoid what they see poorly.

My solution for my wife's trike is a tubular aluminum staff ~5 feet high. On the top are four bright lights facing to either side, front, and back. This is in addition to another light facing forward, and two more mounted on her helmet. The staff itself is fabricated from old tent tubing—very strong, stiff enough but still flexible. Even if the driver cannot see the trike or her past the curve of the car body, the lights will be at or near eye level and still visible.

Paranoid? Who? Me? You're darn right I am!
Agree with all of that.
Steamer is offline  
Likes For Steamer:
Old 10-03-19, 08:01 AM
  #32  
downtube42
Senior Member
 
downtube42's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 2,235

Bikes: Soma Fog Cutter, Volae Team, '74ish Windsor Carrera Sport, Priority Eight, Nimbus MUni, Trek Roscoe 6

Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 208 Post(s)
Liked 301 Times in 161 Posts
Originally Posted by cat0020 View Post
For most motorists, (drivers); bicycles and motorcycles are just toys, don't belong on public roads, roads are for cars.
Understood. A former coworker and neighbor expressed a similar thought to me one day. In an economic downturn, '08 maybe, he rather angrily said this was no time for stupid things like riding bikes to work. I was thinking to myself, "dude, you drive a 5 liter Mustang the 0.8 miles from our neighborhood to work, and think riding a bike that distance is frivolous?" But the car culture overcomes logic.

But that's another thread.
downtube42 is offline  
Likes For downtube42:
Old 10-09-19, 09:32 AM
  #33  
DC Bike Blogger
DC Bike Blogger
 
DC Bike Blogger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Washington, D.C. area (NoVa)
Posts: 40

Bikes: https://dcbikeblogger.wordpress.com/my-bikes/

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 15 Post(s)
Liked 21 Times in 12 Posts
You nailed it with the last word of your post - "fun". I have short and long wheel base recumbents, and both recumbent bikes and recumbent trikes. I don't ride recumbents exclusively. They just add some variety to my rides.
-
1997 Pearl Lime Green Easy Racers Tour Easy with Zipper Fairing


Crimson Red Lightning Cycle Dynamics P-38 with Zipper Fairing


2009 Sunset Gold TerraTrike Zoomer Elite


Pure White Recycled Recumbent Mach 3


My other recumbents: https://www.bikeforums.net/g/album/15450017

Last edited by DC Bike Blogger; 10-09-19 at 11:00 AM.
DC Bike Blogger is offline  
Likes For DC Bike Blogger:
Old 10-10-19, 10:33 AM
  #34  
rydabent
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Lincoln Ne
Posts: 8,039

Bikes: RANS Stratus TerraTrike Tour II

Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1656 Post(s)
Liked 236 Times in 152 Posts
Originally Posted by robnol View Post
trikes are unsafe in my opinion they take up to much road space.. sometimes u have to ride in the ditch to get out of the way for cars on a road with a tiny shoulder
Actually they may be safer. As many have pointed out drivers dont know what to make of trikes. Many it seems think they are some handicap machine or a strange wheel chair. As a result when cars pass trikes they go clear over in the other lane most of the time. Drivers dont want their name and picture posted on the front page of the paper as having hit a handicap person. Trike riders dont disabuse drivers of their take on trikes.
rydabent is offline  
Likes For rydabent:
Old 10-11-19, 05:50 AM
  #35  
Trsnrtr
Super Moderator
 
Trsnrtr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 18,655

Bikes: Giant Propel, Gianni Motta, Co-Motion Supremo, ICE VTX, Garneau Steeple X

Mentioned: 101 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7430 Post(s)
Liked 821 Times in 445 Posts
Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
Actually they may be safer. As many have pointed out drivers dont know what to make of trikes. Many it seems think they are some handicap machine or a strange wheel chair. As a result when cars pass trikes they go clear over in the other lane most of the time. Drivers dont want their name and picture posted on the front page of the paper as having hit a handicap person. Trike riders dont disabuse drivers of their take on trikes.
Absolutely true, in fact, it can be annoying at times. I was on a ride a couple days ago in the middle of nowhere on a flat, wide road and a car followed a 100' behind for probably a half mile.

I doubt they were ogling my trike from behind as there isn't much to see but guess they were just confused what this thing with a flashing light and a flag on it was.
__________________
Dennis T

I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I can't believe the ignorance out there. - An Anonymous Addictionite.

Trsnrtr is offline  
Likes For Trsnrtr:
Old 10-11-19, 09:05 AM
  #36  
Steamer
Zircon Encrusted Tweezers
 
Steamer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: high ground
Posts: 1,180
Mentioned: 5 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 182 Post(s)
Liked 42 Times in 29 Posts
Originally Posted by Trsnrtr View Post
Absolutely true, in fact, it can be annoying at times. I was on a ride a couple days ago in the middle of nowhere on a flat, wide road and a car followed a 100' behind for probably a half mile.

I doubt they were ogling my trike from behind as there isn't much to see but guess they were just confused what this thing with a flashing light and a flag on it was.
In extreme cases like that, I pull over and stop. People get the message and go on their way.
Steamer is offline  
Likes For Steamer:
Old 10-12-19, 07:32 PM
  #37  
Gconan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 610

Bikes: Norco search xr

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 184 Post(s)
Liked 123 Times in 75 Posts
Where do you buy these wonderful things at?
Gconan is online now  
Old 10-13-19, 01:53 AM
  #38  
Rollfast
What happened?
 
Rollfast's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Around here somewhere
Posts: 8,029

Bikes: 3 Rollfasts, 3 Schwinns, a Shelby and a Higgins Flightliner in a pear tree!

Mentioned: 57 Post(s)
Tagged: 1 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1831 Post(s)
Liked 280 Times in 244 Posts
The only way to find your answer is to try one.
__________________
I don't know nothing, and I memorized it in school and got this here paper I'm proud of to show it.
Rollfast is offline  
Likes For Rollfast:
Old 10-13-19, 03:26 AM
  #39  
cat0020
Ride more, eat less
 
cat0020's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Philla PA, Hoboken NJ, Brooklyn NY
Posts: 995

Bikes: Too many but never enough.

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 269 Post(s)
Liked 51 Times in 40 Posts
Originally Posted by Gconan View Post
Where do you buy these wonderful things at?
I bought two Vision R40s from my local Craigslist ads, and another one from eBay listing, but seller is also within 45 miles.

There are more and more listings on eBay for recumbents, but shipping on recumbent bikes can be crazy, especially buying one just by looking at pictures without test riding.
cat0020 is offline  
Likes For cat0020:
Old 10-13-19, 10:20 AM
  #40  
Lightning Pilot
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Peoples Democratic Socialist Republic of Madiganistan (formerly known as Illinois)
Posts: 113

Bikes: Lightning P-38

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 48 Post(s)
Liked 31 Times in 25 Posts
Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
Actually they may be safer. As many have pointed out drivers dont know what to make of trikes. Many it seems think they are some handicap machine or a strange wheel chair. As a result when cars pass trikes they go clear over in the other lane most of the time. Drivers dont want their name and picture posted on the front page of the paper as having hit a handicap person. Trike riders dont disabuse drivers of their take on trikes.
Originally Posted by Trsnrtr View Post
Absolutely true, in fact, it can be annoying at times. I was on a ride a couple days ago in the middle of nowhere on a flat, wide road and a car followed a 100' behind for probably a half mile.

I doubt they were ogling my trike from behind as there isn't much to see but guess they were just confused what this thing with a flashing light and a flag on it was.
Confused drivers are safer drivers? The same thing applies, to a lesser extent, to two wheeled recumbents. Of course, they have to see you first, which is why ours have lots of lights pointing forward, back, and sides: eight on the trike, six on the standard bent.
Lightning Pilot is offline  
Old 10-13-19, 10:30 AM
  #41  
Lightning Pilot
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Peoples Democratic Socialist Republic of Madiganistan (formerly known as Illinois)
Posts: 113

Bikes: Lightning P-38

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 48 Post(s)
Liked 31 Times in 25 Posts
Originally Posted by Gconan View Post
Where do you buy these wonderful things at?
I recommend finding the nearest dealer. Shipping gets pricey, as previously mentioned. You can do a lot of research online, but definitely try before you buy. I also recommend starting with a lower end machine for two reasons: they are less expensive; and they tend to be "one size fits most." Higher end bents may need to be sized for the rider (Lightning P-38s for example). There are a lot of recumbents out there, and you'll be happier if you do your homework beforehand.

I started with a Sun Tour Easy, then went to a Sun CZ Sport, and finally to the Lightning P-38, and I'm glad I did it that way, as bents use muscles slightly differently than uprights, and steering is different, even on a trike.
Lightning Pilot is offline  
Likes For Lightning Pilot:
Old 10-13-19, 09:17 PM
  #42  
Jeff Wills
Insane Bicycle Mechanic
 
Jeff Wills's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: other Vancouver
Posts: 9,315
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 578 Post(s)
Liked 164 Times in 121 Posts
Originally Posted by Gconan View Post
Where do you buy these wonderful things at?
It would help to know where you live & ride.

As others said: try one. Try several. Many times your concept of what is "right" will change after you right a couple different styles. Also, there are many different types of recumbent bikes (not to mention trikes) and buying the "wrong" recumbent can be an unnecessary turn-off.
__________________
Jeff Wills

Comcast nuked my web page. It will return soon..
Jeff Wills is offline  
Likes For Jeff Wills:
Old 10-13-19, 10:27 PM
  #43  
Lightning Pilot
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: Peoples Democratic Socialist Republic of Madiganistan (formerly known as Illinois)
Posts: 113

Bikes: Lightning P-38

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 48 Post(s)
Liked 31 Times in 25 Posts
Originally Posted by Jeff Wills View Post
It would help to know where you live & ride.

As others said: try one. Try several. Many times your concept of what is "right" will change after you right a couple different styles. Also, there are many different types of recumbent bikes (not to mention trikes) and buying the "wrong" recumbent can be an unnecessary turn-off.
How are things at Muppet Labs? (Love the avatar!)
Lightning Pilot is offline  
Old 10-14-19, 07:42 PM
  #44  
Gconan
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2018
Posts: 610

Bikes: Norco search xr

Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 184 Post(s)
Liked 123 Times in 75 Posts
Originally Posted by Jeff Wills View Post
It would help to know where you live & ride.

As others said: try one. Try several. Many times your concept of what is "right" will change after you right a couple different styles. Also, there are many different types of recumbent bikes (not to mention trikes) and buying the "wrong" recumbent can be an unnecessary turn-off.
Thanks! Turns out I have a trike dealer only 20 minutes from me. But after looking at the p-38 it would seem I prefer that style but it is out of my budget. There is a lot to learn indeed.
Gconan is online now  
Old 10-14-19, 09:32 PM
  #45  
Jeff Wills
Insane Bicycle Mechanic
 
Jeff Wills's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: other Vancouver
Posts: 9,315
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 578 Post(s)
Liked 164 Times in 121 Posts
Originally Posted by Gconan View Post
Thanks! Turns out I have a trike dealer only 20 minutes from me. But after looking at the p-38 it would seem I prefer that style but it is out of my budget. There is a lot to learn indeed.
My first commercial recumbent was a Lightning P-38. (I had built recumbent trikes for sale a few years earlier.) My test ride was in the hallways of the convention center during a bike dealer convention. It worked great, but it took me a while to save up for the whole machine.

Trikes are great but if you're going to be riding with uprights a SWB like the Lightning is a good match. Talk to that trike shop- there might be a recumbent group near you that you haven't found yet. It's always good to find the range of opinions about different bikes and trikes. I had some preconceptions that I shed when I tried out a RANS Phoenix a couple months ago... and I've been around recumbents for nearly 40 years.
__________________
Jeff Wills

Comcast nuked my web page. It will return soon..
Jeff Wills is offline  
Likes For Jeff Wills:
Old 10-14-19, 09:33 PM
  #46  
Jeff Wills
Insane Bicycle Mechanic
 
Jeff Wills's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: other Vancouver
Posts: 9,315
Mentioned: 29 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 578 Post(s)
Liked 164 Times in 121 Posts
Originally Posted by Lightning Pilot View Post
How are things at Muppet Labs? (Love the avatar!)
Nothing has exploded... tonight.
__________________
Jeff Wills

Comcast nuked my web page. It will return soon..
Jeff Wills is offline  
Old 02-02-20, 09:13 AM
  #47  
rydabent
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Lincoln Ne
Posts: 8,039

Bikes: RANS Stratus TerraTrike Tour II

Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1656 Post(s)
Liked 236 Times in 152 Posts
Originally Posted by Lightning Pilot View Post
Confused drivers are safer drivers? The same thing applies, to a lesser extent, to two wheeled recumbents. Of course, they have to see you first, which is why ours have lots of lights pointing forward, back, and sides: eight on the trike, six on the standard bent.
This idea that bents and trikes are too low to be seen is nonsense. Drivers avoid running over a dead skunk on the road. Bents and trikes are taller than a dead skunk. Case closed.
rydabent is offline  
Likes For rydabent:
Old 02-02-20, 10:36 AM
  #48  
BlazingPedals
Senior Member
 
BlazingPedals's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Middle of da Mitten
Posts: 11,523

Bikes: Trek 7500, RANS V-Rex, Optima Baron, Velokraft NoCom, M-5 Carbon Highracer, Catrike Speed

Mentioned: 12 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1158 Post(s)
Liked 233 Times in 164 Posts
I've taken to using a helmet-mounted rear flasher. That way, nobody can believably claim that they didn't see me in front of them. My flasher can bee seen from a half-mile away in bright sun, and further in cloudy weather or shade.

If height mattered, semis would run over cars all the time, and cars would never hit upright cyclists.
BlazingPedals is offline  
Old 02-05-20, 04:40 PM
  #49  
osco53
Old Fart In Training
 
osco53's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 2,264
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 19 Times in 14 Posts
I worked up to 25 miles on a mountain bike in singletrack, took some time.
From that 25 mile rides on a road bike were attained faster and 50 mile rides came but with pain in places I did not like.
Then came my Easy racer Tour easy Long wheel base bent, I had to develop slightly different muscle groups and a 50 mile ride was still a workout
but the pain was missing,,,completely
osco53 is offline  
Likes For osco53:
Old 02-07-20, 07:21 AM
  #50  
rydabent
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Lincoln Ne
Posts: 8,039

Bikes: RANS Stratus TerraTrike Tour II

Mentioned: 24 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1656 Post(s)
Liked 236 Times in 152 Posts
One of the greatest applications for a recumbent is touring. The reason to tour is to see the scenery. Since you sit upright on a bent you have a panoramic view of where you are riding.
rydabent is offline  
Likes For rydabent:

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.