Why are recumbents so rare?

DIscuss anything relating to non-standard cycles and their equipment.
brynpoeth
Posts: 11242
Joined: 30 Nov 2013, 11:26am

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby brynpoeth » 7 Jan 2018, 6:16pm

What sort of people abuse bent riders?

On an UpWrong I can move my hands on the bars, change position a bit to avoid fatigue
Can one do that on a bent? Is it easy to move the seat forward or back a bit?
Entertainer, kidult, curmudgeon
Cycling-of course, but it is far better on a Gillott
We love safety cameras, we love life

Tangled Metal
Posts: 5823
Joined: 13 Feb 2015, 8:32pm

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby Tangled Metal » 7 Jan 2018, 10:24pm

We tour with a young child. He's not old enough for road sense so when on the road (and when he's tired) he's attached to the back wheel of my upright bike with a followme-tandem. It works well with a df but I'm curious about recumbents. Could such a thing work with a two wheeled recumbent? I'm guessing if it's a yes then a trike with single rear wheel might work too.

What's your views? Are recumbents about one person or can then work towing a child? Child trailer too perhaps.

BTW I'm ignoring a tandem recumbent/recumbent trike and one of those recumbent trikes that can also come with a coupling kit to join two into a tandem recumbent.

User avatar
canoesailor
Posts: 52
Joined: 24 Mar 2016, 8:17pm
Location: Leicester

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby canoesailor » 7 Jan 2018, 10:38pm

I think one of the reasons is that most bent riders in the UK are individuals and rarely come together. one bent rider can easily be missed on todays roads.

Most towns have cycling clubs, but in the UK there dont seem to be any bent clubs, once in a while someone will ask if riders in his area are up for a ride, but he is only one. we need to be more together as a group. Nothing tells people that you exist better than groups meeting in public.

Most of us dont even know if there are other bent riders in our own town. I live in Leicestershire and I have never seen another bent rider, I'm sure there must be some but I have never seen them.

So basically we need to get together and be more friendly, not just write posts to each other. Look at some of the American meets, they get big turnouts of bents.

User avatar
Tigerbiten
Posts: 1920
Joined: 29 Jun 2009, 6:49am

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby Tigerbiten » 7 Jan 2018, 11:00pm

Tangled Metal wrote:We tour with a young child. He's not old enough for road sense so when on the road (and when he's tired) he's attached to the back wheel of my upright bike with a followme-tandem. It works well with a df but I'm curious about recumbents. Could such a thing work with a two wheeled recumbent? I'm guessing if it's a yes then a trike with single rear wheel might work too.

What's your views? Are recumbents about one person or can then work towing a child? Child trailer too perhaps.

Trikes and two wheel trailers are fine.
If anything a tadpole trike and a two wheel trailer is easier than a bike and two wheel trailer.
It's because both are the same width so making gaps in anti-cycling barriers easier to judge.
I've done +35k miles with a large Carry Freedom trailer behind my bent trike.

Trikes and one wheel trailers can be a bit iffy.
A trike doesn't lean on corners so a trailer won't.
This puts an outwards twisting force on the trike and the higher the trailers CoG the bigger the force.
So a trailer with a low CoG like a BobYak trailer is probably stable.
But a tagalong with a high CoG may well tip the trike over on a corner.

Hase do a kiddy delta trike that can be attached behind their Kettwiesel.
It's just like you can attach 2 or more Kett's together.

As for a two wheel bent and a tag along.
It all depends on how well you can start from standstill.
On a very stable recumbent and with practice, you'll probably do it.
But if you're a bit iffy with uphill starts then forget it, you'll fall over first.

Luck ...... :D

User avatar
Tigerbiten
Posts: 1920
Joined: 29 Jun 2009, 6:49am

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby Tigerbiten » 7 Jan 2018, 11:13pm

brynpoeth wrote:What sort of people abuse bent riders?

Most common shouts is the like of 'Sick bike' or 'I want one of those'.
Punishment passes are rare simply by the fact you're so different.

brynpoeth wrote:On an UpWrong I can move my hands on the bars, change position a bit to avoid fatigue
Can one do that on a bent? Is it easy to move the seat forward or back a bit?

You tend not to need to.
Occasionally you may suffer from what's called 'Recumbent Bum' where your bum goes numb. But it's not common due to a larger contact area.
You tend to suffer from cold/hot feet more in very cold/hot weather.

And I hate cobble stones ...... :D

User avatar
pjclinch
Posts: 3786
Joined: 29 Oct 2007, 2:32pm
Location: Dundee, Scotland
Contact:

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby pjclinch » 8 Jan 2018, 10:15am

brynpoeth wrote:What sort of people abuse bent riders?

On an UpWrong I can move my hands on the bars, change position a bit to avoid fatigue
Can one do that on a bent? Is it easy to move the seat forward or back a bit?


Abuse is generally at the level of laughter. But for every derisory laugh there's a couple of "can I get a shot?", "Cool bike!" etc.

The multiple hand positions cited as advantages for drop bars are a moot point on a 'bent because you have no weight resting on your arms. Much as a traditional Dutch roadster has no need of multiple hand positions, nor does a 'bent. Another practical advantage of no weight on arms is riding one handed for long periods is no problem, so when i was getting cold hands on Saturday I just rode with one hand in a pocket for a few minutes at a time and then swapped.

Seats tend not to move, but rather a telescopic boom is fairly normal. On mine I can adjust the seat angle too.

Pete.
Often seen riding a bike around Dundee...

climo
Posts: 499
Joined: 29 Apr 2009, 8:08am
Location: Warminster

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby climo » 8 Jan 2018, 10:24am

brynpoeth wrote:What sort of people abuse bent riders?
On an UpWrong I can move my hands on the bars, change position a bit to avoid fatigue
Can one do that on a bent? Is it easy to move the seat forward or back a bit?

I'm a new triker but I find that most people are delighted to see a trike, to the point that they smile, say hello, wave and are curious. Kids shout & point, it is after all a large go cart and every small boys dream machine. Everytime I stop people come up to admire the trike.
Cars definitely give you at lot more room, on narrow roads some oncoming cars will stop to let you through even though it's not needed.
At a guess it's because you're unusual, an unknown, possibly unpredictable and maybe disabled. All this creates uncertainty in the car drivers mind, so they keep clear.
The downside is that they are heavy, large & slow. At least I'm slow. I know people get them on trains but I can't see that being easy. Transport by car is a problem. Cold feet can be a problem. I can see misgearing derailleurs being an issue as you can't easily lift the rear wheel to change gear - I've got a hub gear so no problem changing gear when stopped. Rear wheel punctures would be a real pain. Your lower half gets wetter in rain. They take serious storage room.
Upside is that they are stable, comfy, no pressure on the hands, when you're stopped you just sit there in your deckchair.
Move than anything they are FUN. My wife, seeing that I was having a lot of fun wanted one so we're Mr & Mrs Trike now.

User avatar
squeaker
Posts: 3553
Joined: 12 Jan 2007, 11:43pm
Location: Sussex

Re: Why are recumbents so rare?

Postby squeaker » 8 Jan 2018, 10:40am

Si wrote:They can also be a pain to store if you dont have much room.
Depends - my full sus touring bent is shorter length (even with the cranks horizontal), narrower and less tall than my mountain bike - just a different shape :lol:
"42"

Stradageek
Posts: 623
Joined: 17 Jan 2011, 1:07pm

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby Stradageek » 8 Jan 2018, 1:10pm

This rig stores in the garage (trikes pivot upright) together with 6 other bicycles whilst leaving plenty of room for bike building, maintenance etc. (it's a single garage).
Trailer.jpg

User avatar
[XAP]Bob
Posts: 16919
Joined: 26 Sep 2008, 4:12pm

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 8 Jan 2018, 1:16pm

Tangled Metal wrote:We tour with a young child. He's not old enough for road sense so when on the road (and when he's tired) he's attached to the back wheel of my upright bike with a followme-tandem. It works well with a df but I'm curious about recumbents. Could such a thing work with a two wheeled recumbent? I'm guessing if it's a yes then a trike with single rear wheel might work too.

What's your views? Are recumbents about one person or can then work towing a child? Child trailer too perhaps.


Tagalong would work behind a two wheeled bent - but beware that the child will have more influence on your attitude than you might expect, particularly on a low bent. Their body weight will be significantly above yours, so could be detrimental to your ability to steer...

Don't put a single wheel anything behind a trike, trikes don't tilt - single wheel trailers do.

Even if we ignore the kett style tandem coupling, and the (actually properly rare) tandem trikes then you can take children places. I used to use a two wheeled child trailer - kids have outgrown it now, so it sits a bit sadly in the garage...
I have also helped them along on off road paths, riding next to them and putting one hand on the middle of the bars - I can push them along at quite a clip, and guide their steering. Just be aware that your own braking is compromised...
I have also towed a KMX K3 behind my ICE Sprint using rope, although I'd not advise it...
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

brynpoeth
Posts: 11242
Joined: 30 Nov 2013, 11:26am

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby brynpoeth » 8 Jan 2018, 1:45pm

Maybe one could dress up as Santa or Paddington Bear to confuse the abusers a bit more
Entertainer, kidult, curmudgeon
Cycling-of course, but it is far better on a Gillott
We love safety cameras, we love life

User avatar
[XAP]Bob
Posts: 16919
Joined: 26 Sep 2008, 4:12pm

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 8 Jan 2018, 1:58pm

Have to say that I haven't come across any abusers - other than a reduced level of general cyclist abuse...
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

Yossarian
Posts: 12
Joined: 21 Dec 2015, 4:24pm

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby Yossarian » 8 Jan 2018, 2:59pm

There was a bloke with one where I live but not seen him for a while. Look pretty dangerous to me, harder to see them being so low down.

User avatar
[XAP]Bob
Posts: 16919
Joined: 26 Sep 2008, 4:12pm

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 8 Jan 2018, 3:02pm

Is that why everyone still rides a penny farthing (or ordinary)?

I'm much higher than the white lines on the road, and no-one seems to think they are too low to see.

You need to be careful when filtering, but then you always need to careful when filtering...
A shortcut has to be a challenge, otherwise it would just be the way. No situation is so dire that panic cannot make it worse.
There are two kinds of people in this world: those can extrapolate from incomplete data.

Tangled Metal
Posts: 5823
Joined: 13 Feb 2015, 8:32pm

Re: Why is recumbents so rare?

Postby Tangled Metal » 8 Jan 2018, 3:20pm

[XAP]Bob wrote:I'm much higher than the white lines on the road, and no-one seems to think they are too low to see.

Good answer.

Although I've seen a fair few cars weaving over a few white lines on the road before now so perhaps not as good an answer as I thought.