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Which Is Faster . . .

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Which Is Faster . . .

Old 03-20-13, 10:17 PM
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Which Is Faster . . .

What are the fastest (production) trikes?

Do they compare in speed to the fastest (production) two-wheelers, which I assume (?) would be low-racers?

* Fastest: highest sustained speed in a straight line on a flat road with equivalent watt output from equivalent size/weight engines.

** Production: not a special built race machine, but something you can order off a catalog.

If you introduce practical fairings, tail boxes, and socks into the mix, does that change the answer? Since I see fairings for trikes, but not for low racers.

*** Practical: safely rideable on public roads, though not necessarily recommended for heavy city traffic.
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Old 03-21-13, 05:18 AM
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- Hard numbers are hard to come by !!
- Fastest production trikes: Windcheetah/Catrike 700/ICE Vortex (possible new contender: CarbonTrikes)
- Speed difference: for me I estimate that the ICE Vortex is maybe 1 or 2 mph slower than my Zox Lowracer with a small tailbox, but it is hard to say without a power meter and more tests.
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Old 03-21-13, 07:35 AM
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I agree with Zoxed. I average ~2 miles per hour slower on my 700 than I do on my lowracers.
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Old 03-21-13, 04:34 PM
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Is the reason (why the fastest trikes are 1-2 mph slower than the fastest low-racers) a little bit due to the extra rolling resistance of the third wheel, but mostly due to the extra aero drag of the trikes's more upright seating position and two wheels sticking out in the wind?

If so, I wonder how close you could bring the Windcheetah to the low-racer by fitting the trike with a fairing, tailbox, sock, and covers on the wheels?

See, it seems that if you could get the trike's aero to be closer to a velomobile . . . I read velomobilists' saying their machines are even faster than low-racers.
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Old 03-21-13, 11:00 PM
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You could get close to a velomobile with a trike, front fairing, and a body sock. Mark Mueller experimented with this a while back. He sold his WindWrap fairings business to TerraCycle last year.

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Old 03-22-13, 05:20 AM
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Originally Posted by jyl
...a little bit due to the extra rolling resistance of the third wheel,
I have not done the math, but do not forget the the weight is less on each wheel for a trike, so tyre deflection is less, so RR is less *per wheel*. Depending on the tyres weight/RR linearity I guess it could go *either* way !

Originally Posted by jyl
but mostly due to the extra aero drag of the trikes's more upright seating position
Depends on the LR/trike: my Vortex is much more laidback than my Zox !


Originally Posted by jyl
and two wheels sticking out in the wind?
I would *guess* that is the most likely explanation.
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Old 03-22-13, 03:38 PM
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Thanks. I'll have to try each one of these days.
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