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First 200 on a trike, any advice?

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First 200 on a trike, any advice?

Old 03-17-09, 11:53 AM
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claire
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First 200 on a trike, any advice?

Hello

I'm going to ride my first 200 brevet on a trike on sunday. A friend of mine has been lending me his ICE a couple of times since january (total 350 km or something like that) and now I want to see what it's like on longer distances. The longest I've done on he trike is 120 km and it went allright. I've done several rides 200 km or more so I'm OK with dealing with food, tiredness, etc... and I think I'm well prepared to ride a 200 now, but I'm just wondering if there are some specific issues about riding a trike rather than upright bike on a long distance. I know it's going to be tough and challenging (so far my average is something like 18 km/h so I think I'll make it just within the official 12h30mn) but hey, riding a trike is still so much fun!

Also, and more importantly: what should I wear? Last time I got chafing from my regular padded shorts so I don't think i's a good idea.

Thanks everyone...
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Old 03-17-09, 07:57 PM
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I think you're going to find it's a lot more challenging than you think. Trikes take 33% more energy (roughly) than a regular recumbent. Are you prepared to deal with that, as well as taking 33% longer? If so, thre aren't any issues other than making sure you have extra tubes and tires for every wheel - cause you ain't egtting a swap from your friends Wear whatever you like that won't hurt, but maybe bring some butt butter for your thighs just in case.
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Old 03-17-09, 08:30 PM
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My experience with tadpole trikes (I have nine years experience and currently own a ICE T) is they are a tad bit slower (pardon the pun) but for me it's more like 10% at the most slower. I also own a short wheel base recumbent, double Vision Tandem recumbent, a great road bike and mountain bike. I've been riding year around for over 27 years averaging over 4000 miles. The speed difference for me between any of my bikes is minimal.
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Old 03-19-09, 06:40 AM
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Originally Posted by mtessmer View Post
My experience with tadpole trikes (I have nine years experience and currently own a ICE T) is they are a tad bit slower (pardon the pun) but for me it's more like 10% at the most slower. I also own a short wheel base recumbent, double Vision Tandem recumbent, a great road bike and mountain bike. I've been riding year around for over 27 years averaging over 4000 miles. The speed difference for me between any of my bikes is minimal.
Accurate assessment............But then again you actually ride one.
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Old 03-19-09, 04:39 PM
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My trike and I are quite slow when hills enter the equation (slow going up, rediculous going down) I think that you probably want to make sure the seat is adjusted correctly to save your knees. I had knee problems the last time I did 65 miles, which seems like you dont have that problem.

I would recommend regular under-armor style long spandex pants. the padding pants always seem to get in the way on a trike, since you tend to not need it in that area. Feels more comfy to me, anyway.
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Old 03-19-09, 07:59 PM
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Originally Posted by scarabeoguy View Post
Accurate assessment............But then again you actually ride one.
And I race them. And I do long distance rides. And I race long distance also. I find most people to do 13-16 regardless of the bike. Very few riders - especially bent riders - really know what they and their bikes are capable of.

I don't mean to denigrate your own opinion, but in general, performance is determined by the rider. So the OP may experience no real change. But the extra rolling resistance of the third wheel coupled with them being smaller wheels, plus likely more frontal area, creates more than 10% drag for sure.

Last edited by aikigreg; 03-19-09 at 09:06 PM. Reason: wanted to make a change
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Old 03-19-09, 11:45 PM
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I did part of the SIR (Seattle Randos) winter training series on my trike. It was early on in the season but the ride hammered me. I was much slower than I expected and was not able to keep up with the group once we hit the hills, I spent a lot of quality time with the sweeps.

I was surprised how much extra energy I spent on my trike vs my corsa.

OTOH, there is a lot to be said for riding a trike long distances assuming you can overcome the fitness and energy issues. It is stable at any speed, it is comfortable, even at stop lights and rests, it is much easier to eat on the trike than eat on the recumbent bike. On my trike I can change my jacket, I can change my gloves, I can open and close pockets. I can not do that on my Corsa while riding.

A number of people have done the PBP on trikes. There are a number of trike riders who do fast paced double centuries (doug foot comes to mind). It is totally doable to do 200k on a trike if you have already ridden 120k on the same trike and felt comfortable with the pace, distance, etc.

For my purposes I sold my trike to finance a lowracer. I am using the Corsa for current long distance rides.
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Old 03-20-09, 08:28 AM
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Yup - And a TON of people do cross country trips on trikes. They may even be the best platform for doing so in certain areas of the country!
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Old 03-20-09, 08:45 AM
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Originally Posted by djwid View Post
I did part of the SIR (Seattle Randos) winter training series on my trike. It was early on in the season but the ride hammered me. I was much slower than I expected and was not able to keep up with the group once we hit the hills, I spent a lot of quality time with the sweeps.

I was surprised how much extra energy I spent on my trike vs my corsa.
I have the same issues. I'm so incredibly slow on my trike, and I think most of it is my problem, not the trike's. i can make 30 mph on flat ground with good pavement and some motivation, but something about the trike makes me relax a bit too much and I usually average between 13 and 16, like a previous poster said. I realize that the trike is capable of a lot more, given a better motor, but something about the position makes me a tad lazy. Another thing is probably the pavement conditions (chip&seal) and hills/headwind combined with my brain knowing exactly how long the ride is going to be. I take it pretty easy if I'm going to be riding a 65 miler early on, just so I don't go flat at the end of the ride.

Training rides teach me so much about how pitiful my eating/caloric intake is on rides. If I don't eat properly and hydrate, I'm toast at the end of the ride. Most of my trouble comes from dehydration and me messing around with the seat adjustment trying to find my most comfortable position.

I just got a craigslist road bike (after selling my Trek 5000 TCT to get the trike!) and it's a beautiful old Lotus with downtube shifters. I was shocked at how it just glides along compared to the Terra Trike. I have half a mind to use that instead of the trike for this weekend's training ride...

Sorry for the hijack, OP!
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Old 03-20-09, 03:42 PM
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Thanks everyone, will let you know how it goes!
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Old 03-20-09, 07:55 PM
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you'll be fine! Just be prepared!
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Old 03-23-09, 07:23 AM
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So.....
I did it!! And it was SO MUCH FUN!!!
Well the weather was good, we had a tailwind coming back which is great because I've got a streamer which acts a bit like a sail. Our riding average was something like 21 km/h. The climbing wasn't huge, and most of the climbs were very short. Our stops were very short, so we were able to finish under 12 hours (1h30 before the cutoff time). I think it was the first brevet on which I wasn't looking forward to the end 30 km before the end! It's just amazing how comfortable it is: no pain in the arms, shoulders, back, butt, neck... I love it!!! My legs are pretty sore though, as well as my knees but apparently I'm not spinning fast enough yet.
So the next step now is the 300 in a month!
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Old 03-23-09, 07:16 PM
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On the longer rides, you could just bring a blanket and cover yourself to sleep on your trike.
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Old 03-23-09, 08:00 PM
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Congratulations, nice work!
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Old 03-23-09, 09:55 PM
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beautiful! I'm surprised it didn't have much climbing in and around Paris. I remember some good elevation outside the city, but I wasn't there much. I intend to remedy that next year. Maybe I can get a brevet with your group!
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