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Recumbent vs road bike race

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Recumbent vs road bike race

Old 12-18-08, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by StephenH
Using bicycles with different gearing, different aerodynamics, different weights, etc., changes the dynamics of riding. One of the consequences is that two riders on different bikes that ride the same speed on flats won't necessarily ride the same speeds on up- or down-hills or in head/tail winds. Another way to look at this is that recumbents are not slower on the hills, they're faster on the flats.

Suppose you're on an upright bike and the other guy's on a recumbent, and you're riding at the same speed on the flats. Assuming his bike is more aerodynamic, he's putting out less power than you are. If both of you are riding at your maximum speed, then it means he's not able to put out as much power as you are. When you come to the hill, he doesn't have a gravity advantage like he has an aerodynamic advantage, so he falls behind. Or if he could put out as much power as you do, then he would have already passed you on the flats and you wouldn't be riding at the same speed to begin with.

I notice this on the Worksman bike in the avatar over there. On group rides (IE, charity rides), I'll pass people on hills and in headwinds. Does that mean industrial bikes are better on hills than road bikes? No, it just means I'm slower on the flats on that bike, so when i get to the hill, I'm riding with a bunch of slower people, and I can pass some of them on the hill. If I rode a faster bike, I'd go up the hill at more or less the same speed, but I'd be riding with a faster bunch of people to begin with, so I wouldn't be passing anyone.

I have no idea what you just said but Ill disagree just because....
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Old 12-18-08, 01:28 PM
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Originally Posted by garysol1
I have no idea what you just said but Ill disagree just because....
I didn't even bother reading it. Too many words.

I love how the recumbulators are falling into our trap though....
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Old 12-18-08, 01:47 PM
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I considered a faired recumbent for the pure speed but I realized I wouldn't be able to lock it to street signs very easily when I'm riding around the city.
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Old 12-18-08, 01:54 PM
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I would get a faired recumbent and then rig up a small rocket motor for the hills. Maybe the USAF has some surplus Sidewinders on eBay?
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Old 12-18-08, 02:19 PM
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I switched from a DF to a recumbent due to chronic lower back problems. I probably rode the DF 3-4 years too long, so the switch definitely made cycling fun again. Faster/slower is secondary to being able to enjoy riding again.

I know some of you would put a bullet in your brain before you rode anything but a DF. Okay by me Personally I enjoy cycling too much to give it up for vanity.

I took my old DF (Trek 560) for a 15 mile ride this summer, for the first time in a couple years. It felt like a Porche - acceleration and handling were unbelievable. Afterward my back hurt so I couldn't ride for a week. On the other hand I took my V-Rex on a 6 day 600 mile self supported tour two summers ago, and experienced no "bad" pain. If I could do that on a DF, I'd still ride a DF.

I find 'bent haters and 'bent fanatics equally self absorbed and meaningless.
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Old 12-18-08, 02:35 PM
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You can tell a recumbent rider by the use of terms like "bent", "ass hatchet", and "DF".
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Old 12-18-08, 02:43 PM
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I am pretty sure that recumbent make less use of the glutes than do road bikes. When you lower your handlebars on a road bike or scoot back on the seat, you recruit your glutes to take some of the load off the quads. It would follow then that the recumbent position, which if rotated to a road bike is basically the classic "sit up and beg" position, would not recruit the glutes nearly as much as a "flat back" position on a road bike.

This might explain the difficulty up hills. The more laid back, the more aerodynamic, but the less you recruit your glutes and the more you rely on your quads for power. This would seriously limit the power you could produce and lead to the disadvantage seen during climbs, when pure power to weight rather than aerodynamics rule the day.
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Old 12-18-08, 02:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff
I am pretty sure that recumbent make less use of the glutes than do road bikes. When you lower your handlebars on a road bike or scoot back on the seat, you recruit your glutes to take some of the load off the quads. It would follow then that the recumbent position, which if rotated to a road bike is basically the classic "sit up and beg" position, would not recruit the glutes nearly as much as a "flat back" position on a road bike.

This might explain the difficulty up hills. The more laid back, the more aerodynamic, but the less you recruit your glutes and the more you rely on your quads for power. This would seriously limit the power you could produce and lead to the disadvantage seen during climbs, when pure power to weight rather than aerodynamics rule the day.
The position might explain the heavy prevalence of facial hair amonst the recumbulators as well.
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Old 12-18-08, 03:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Psimet2001
The position might explain the heavy prevalence of facial hair amonst the recumbulators as well.
Facial hair? On recumbent riders? That's a myth, we go so fast on da' bents, smokin roadies, that any facial hair gets oxidized away. Really. Well, at least that is the case for those of us that visit planets with atmospheres like Earth.
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Old 12-18-08, 04:20 PM
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Originally Posted by StephenH
Using bicycles with different gearing, different aerodynamics, different weights, etc., changes the dynamics of riding. One of the consequences is that two riders on different bikes that ride the same speed on flats won't necessarily ride the same speeds on up- or down-hills or in head/tail winds. Another way to look at this is that recumbents are not slower on the hills, they're faster on the flats.

Suppose you're on an upright bike and the other guy's on a recumbent, and you're riding at the same speed on the flats. Assuming his bike is more aerodynamic, he's putting out less power than you are. If both of you are riding at your maximum speed, then it means he's not able to put out as much power as you are. When you come to the hill, he doesn't have a gravity advantage like he has an aerodynamic advantage, so he falls behind. Or if he could put out as much power as you do, then he would have already passed you on the flats and you wouldn't be riding at the same speed to begin with.

I notice this on the Worksman bike in the avatar over there. On group rides (IE, charity rides), I'll pass people on hills and in headwinds. Does that mean industrial bikes are better on hills than road bikes? No, it just means I'm slower on the flats on that bike, so when i get to the hill, I'm riding with a bunch of slower people, and I can pass some of them on the hill. If I rode a faster bike, I'd go up the hill at more or less the same speed, but I'd be riding with a faster bunch of people to begin with, so I wouldn't be passing anyone.

One thing that some bent riders need to realize (and some roadies too) is that most of the "fast" cyclists do not partake in charity rides or centuries.... Those that do are gone from the start to get away from the sketchy "fast" riders that will do everything in their power to hang on. The last two charity/century I participated in had awful wrecks where sketchy inexperienced riders got in the middle of the "fast" pack early on, touched wheels, and took out a few with them at 28+ MPH. As luck may have it I saw both wrecks first hand and stayed upright..... I'm done with these charity/century "races".

In short... remember no matter how fast you are there is always somebody in your city that can blow your doors off. Deflate the big head

And to your first point talking about power.... You guys dont use your leg muscles the same way we do. Your quads get worked more (and fatigued more) than an upright rider. We heavly rely on our hamstrings and glutes and with these being larger muscles, can produce more power for longer durations. Its not apples to apples

Last edited by wfrogge; 12-18-08 at 04:24 PM.
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Old 12-18-08, 04:30 PM
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When I crank out a hundy on my 'bent during a charity ride, I keep my cane with me for protection from those sketchy, wedgie-riding, racer wannabees.
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Old 12-18-08, 04:34 PM
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meh...
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Old 12-18-08, 04:44 PM
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roadie-killer-rolf on the prowl.



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Old 12-18-08, 05:27 PM
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Originally Posted by cod.peace
the fact that a lot of people come to 'bents due to various physical reasons that prevent them from being comfortable on ass hatchets.
You were doing OK until you got to that point. If you want people to pay attention to what you have to say, you don't start by insulting their bikes.
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Old 12-18-08, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by halfspeed
You were doing OK until you got to that point. If you want people to pay attention to what you have to say, you don't start by insulting their bikes.
why can't we all just get along like those two?

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Old 12-18-08, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by Johannes
roadie-killer-rolf on the prowl.



... and here Rolf shows signs of his early imprinting.

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Old 12-18-08, 05:44 PM
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Originally Posted by wanders
... and here Rolf shows signs of his early imprinting.

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Old 12-18-08, 05:59 PM
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Originally Posted by Johannes
roadie-killer-rolf on the prowl.



Is that guy sitting in a giant floating key chain?

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Old 12-18-08, 06:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Johannes
why can't we all just get along like those two?

Photoshopped.
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Old 12-18-08, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Johannes
why can't we all just get along like those two?
Cuz even an old, slow, fat farker like me has a little (gotta look close tho) self respect...and not enough willpower to refrain from jumping the hammock rider, stealing his hammock and taking a nice nap on it.
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Old 12-18-08, 06:33 PM
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Originally Posted by garysol1
Let's never forget the ever famous Randy The Recumbulator...

YouTube - Local Flavors with Randy The Recumbulator
That video is solid Gold!! That guy is a nut!!
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Old 12-18-08, 06:40 PM
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Originally Posted by caloso
Is that guy sitting in a giant floating key chain?

finally something actually worth looking at in this thread ... and of course the recumbulator video above showing the ambassador of the bent republic giving us a rare glimpse into the world of his fellow recumblings.
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Old 12-18-08, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by invasionusa
That video is solid Gold!! That guy is a nut!!
Nah...just a recumbulator.
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Old 12-18-08, 08:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Carbon Unit
I was considering a Calfee Recumbant because the saddle on my bike was killing me. The lighest Calfee Recumbants are about 19 lbs which seemed light to me. However they are more expensive than an upright bike, are harder to transport and now that I finally found a saddle that works me, the need for a recumbant has passed.
What is the saddle? (a slight hijack)

Back on topic, I ride both. When I'm on my bent, I get passed by roadies. When I'm on my road bike, I get passed by bents. *sigh* Oh, well. I have fun on both, anyway.

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Old 12-18-08, 08:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Psimet2001
I didn't think people still used that. I haven't heard "flame on" since the old Compuserve days of playing that text RPG game they had while drinking crappy light beer and eating oreos.
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