Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

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belgiangoth
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Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby belgiangoth » 20 Jun 2020, 6:57pm

I was wondering about what it's like to ride an unsuspended highracer. Obviously my DF is unsuspended (it also has one gear and one brake) but I'm a dynamic load on that. More importantly I can fit 38mm tyres with mudguards, seems like all the lighter highracers ignore the idea of mudguards and fit narrow tyres - surely a recipe for pain?
If I had a baby elephant, it would point out that there is no evidence for planing. Then it would eat all my bananas.

UpWrong
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby UpWrong » 20 Jun 2020, 7:24pm

I think the Bacchetta Pelso and Schlitter Freestyle support reasonably wide tyres.

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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby [XAP]Bob » 20 Jun 2020, 7:25pm

Why pain, there is no pressure point to take the loading, it’s like falling into bed from a very low height
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.

belgiangoth
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby belgiangoth » 20 Jun 2020, 11:43pm

I was thinking pain in that you can't do aything but take the bumps.
If I had a baby elephant, it would point out that there is no evidence for planing. Then it would eat all my bananas.

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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby [XAP]Bob » 20 Jun 2020, 11:45pm

Which is what you do on a DF as well.
But the normal position on a DF makes that painful, the position on a ‘bent doesn’t.

I used to run pretty hard tyres on the rapto (though still fairly wide), but had no issues with bumps.
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.

speedy7777
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby speedy7777 » 21 Jun 2020, 12:52am

I was thinking about that today on a ride. My weight is spread over a very large area from ass to shoulders so though I feel bumps they dont hurt. The weight of my legs is held by clipless pedals. Also Im not static and locked in on the bike and with experience there are ways to absorb bumps a bit. For going over steep speed bumps at pace (trafic calming type obstacles) with superman type bars I can sit up on my ass leaning forward and the frame flexes with the hit and seems to make it an easier stress on the wheels. This is with 28mm tyres on 26" wheels at 80 psi with a fibreglass seat and 2 layers of camping foam and no suspension steel stick bike frame. The recumbent is always going to be the one to ride on for any distance on roads. Suspension is just luxury well worth considering depending on what your priorities are.
Ive been riding them for about 3 years now and really the comparison I read once that it was like getting hit in the back with a chair is wrong. The falling back on a bed analogy makes more sense,

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Tigerbiten
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby Tigerbiten » 21 Jun 2020, 3:33am

It all all depends on the size and speed of the bumps.

I like to take cattle grids at .......
Either sub 10 mph, at that speed you bump through it so there's a lot of vertical movement but it's slow enough not to be too painful.
Or plus 25 mph, at that speed you just hit the tops of the bars as it's just a quick rattle with not a lot of vertical movement.
It's the intermediate speeds between roughly 10 mph to around 25 mph that are painful. The bounces are big enough and quick enough that you cannot really get settled between then. In which case I tend to brace between the pedals and the seat top while lifting my bum a little bit of the seat. I still get bounced a bit as I'm in contact with the top of the seat but being slightly out of the seat my body can absorb some of the movement.

Ps; I HATE cobblestones ................ :D

hercule
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby hercule » 21 Jun 2020, 7:13am

One advantage of recumbents is that you can easily fit smaller wheels with fatter tires without having to worry about pedals hitting the ground. Many of these machines Have the option of running disk brakes which makes it very easy.

atlas_shrugged
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby atlas_shrugged » 21 Jun 2020, 8:55am

This is an interesting topic. My own experience from riding around on a Bacchetta Corsa (700C wheels) is that when on a rough road a recumbent without suspension will lose a lot of energy because the whole body weight has to see-saw back and forth whereas an upwrong pivots the rider about the cranks. I do not know if suspension on a recumbent solves this energy loss as I have no experience riding with good suspension.

What I noticed riding through a village was that I was keeping pace with a roadie but when I got to the end of the village where the road was much rougher then the roadie caught up like I was standing still. This experience seemed to be repeated in a group ride between Oxford and Cambridge. Any time the road was flat/downhill and good quality then I had the advantage but when the road was rough or uphill the situation was reversed.

So not scientific I know but for rough roads I think recumbents need something to improve the situation. I would not say the situation is painful because on long journeys I prefer riding the recumbent.

Brucey
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby Brucey » 21 Jun 2020, 11:41am

arguably there is some 'suspension' in the seat of a recumbent. However its range of frequency response, spring rate, travel and damping will -like anything that might soak up the bumps- have a particular characteristic.

In theory a recumbent ought to suit 'proper suspension' better than a DF bike, in that the machine needs it more (e.g. you can't temporarily unweight the bike in the same way) and the likelihood of pedalling exciting the suspension movement should be reduced on a recumbent because the primary excitation (the pedalling action) is at right angles to the suspension movement. There are also mitigating aspects to do with chain routing vs suspension pivot position which ought to make good design easier.

However theory is one thing, execution quite another. Even with suspension, the tyre choice is liable to completely dominate the way the machine rides.

cheers
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~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Brucey~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

UpWrong
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby UpWrong » 21 Jun 2020, 12:11pm

atlas_shrugged wrote:This is an interesting topic. My own experience from riding around on a Bacchetta Corsa (700C wheels) is that when on a rough road a recumbent without suspension will lose a lot of energy because the whole body weight has to see-saw back and forth whereas an upwrong pivots the rider about the cranks. I do not know if suspension on a recumbent solves this energy loss as I have no experience riding with good suspension.

What I noticed riding through a village was that I was keeping pace with a roadie but when I got to the end of the village where the road was much rougher then the roadie caught up like I was standing still. This experience seemed to be repeated in a group ride between Oxford and Cambridge. Any time the road was flat/downhill and good quality then I had the advantage but when the road was rough or uphill the situation was reversed.

So not scientific I know but for rough roads I think recumbents need something to improve the situation. I would not say the situation is painful because on long journeys I prefer riding the recumbent.

A highracer recumbent might have a more balanced weight distribution than a DF, and will probably have a longer wheelbase, so passive suspension losses might be less than a DF. (Trikes can see-saw in 2 dimensions which helps, but usually have smaller wheels which doesn't.)

For the same size wheels I wouldn't expect much difference in rolling resistance over rough ground, however maybe a bent rider is more likely to back off and brace for impacts, whereas the DF rider might continue pedalling or partially come off the saddle.

speedy7777
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby speedy7777 » 21 Jun 2020, 2:10pm

Agreed there about the speed of hitting rough road making a difference . It can be a bit rattling on rough surfaces. Yes a Df rider can skip over a bump like a mini bunny hop and maintain momentum where a rigid highracer cant and gets slowed down by it. Would be great if there was a way to make a recumbent hop over pot holes.

belgiangoth
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby belgiangoth » 21 Jun 2020, 2:47pm

On a DF you lighten hold on your handlebars and use your legs as suspension. You don't have a similar option on a laidback.

I am mostly interested in comparing unsuspended bikes with, say, 25mm tyres.
If I had a baby elephant, it would point out that there is no evidence for planing. Then it would eat all my bananas.

nobrakes
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Re: Unsuspended Highracer vs DF

Postby nobrakes » 21 Jun 2020, 7:14pm

It depends on the high racer. The Pelso was pretty comfy. The CHR is also comfy. A Metabike is very jarring. The Cruzbike V20 had me tensing up in anticipation of small bumps that I wouldn’t really notice on other high racers. It can depend a lot on the frame design and how it transmits shocks from the rear stays into the seat. I don’t think any non suspended recumbent is ever going to be luxurious but I find the CHR fine to ride for long stretches (I did 100 miles on it recently and was quite comfortable - I broke the return idler after 107 miles otherwise I would have kept going- I had to swap to another bike for the second 100).

It is nice to jump on a DF from time to time and remember that your legs are a fabulous suspension though!