Author Topic: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?  (Read 1648 times)

Simple question that I fear might result in expense.

I'm getting used to my recumbent (hpv streetmachine GT - secondhand). After months of really easy and flat family rides I'm using it more on the roads commuting half an hour each way to work. In doing that I'm noticing that it feels add though I'm slowly slipping off the seat. It has no rise at the bottom end so I'm in danger of slipping off onto the bars / top of the headset (which has missing plastic cap so n could hurt).

I don't think I'll fully slip off but I think I'm tensing as a result of this slipping. I think this is causing my derriere to ache.

I'd obviously suspect it could be a small or medium seat not the large I believed it was but it does have large written under the pad. However this current model of bike when new says the large is fit up to 6'7"tall. (mine is the older model with a one piece seat) but I believe the blurb days the same user height range. I'm 6'5" so the recumbent fits me and so should the largest seat size for it.

Now the curve at the top is a little low so my shoulders sit on the wrong part of the curve a little. It's the same for every car seat I've been in, they shape them to a wide a range of backs but mine is too big. I've got pretty average leg to torso ratio so I don't believe HPV's maximum height of user.

So if it is either the seat shape or the fact even the large is too small, what is the solution? Is there a better seat option? Ergo - mesh? Custom hard shell? Can the current model two piece seat fit the old model?

Or is it just muscle ache due to using muscles in a different way to what my body's used to? If the last thing then 500 to 1000 miles should sort it out. Might not be a fun summer tour if I'm aching in my glutimus maximus.

Any advice or opinions gratefully received.

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2018, 04:10:24 pm »
Sometimes you do find that no matter how much you persist you just don't get on with a particular seat.  I found this with the original aluminum seat that came with my Seiran, it just always seemed to small and never comfortable.  In the end I replaced it with a larger carbon seat made by Ocean Velo and purchased via Laidback in Edinburgh.  No regrets at all as its completely transformed the comfort on my bent.   

LMT

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2018, 07:34:16 pm »
I'd say seat, with a recumbent your hips should be planted. Have a look at Thor, they make good CF seats and as they are based in Europe lead time and postage is cheapish.

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2018, 09:12:34 pm »
I've got a glass seat now and tbh I don't need or want the more expensive carbon seat option I think. Don't want to spend too much.

How do you get the seat and how do you install it?

I'm assuming it comes plain with a collection of nuts, washers and bolts. You take the fixing brackets from your old seat and drill through the new seat to bolt the fitting brackets onto the new seat. I'm guessing that's an easy way to fit it, well I reckon it should be but nothing is ever as easy at it sounds.

I've looked at Thor seats but they only do a large enough seat (xxl) in a sport model that's too laid back for my bent model. The others only go up to about an inch shorter than I am which is no better than what I have really.

The ocean Velo are UK based (we're passing through Plymouth to our summer tour in August and they're just across the bay. However I don't know if they do a seat for my height.

I also wonder how HPV can sell / design a recumbent as suitable for someone up to 6'7" tall but the seat is too short for someone shorter than the top height. That doesn't make sense or seem fair. You buy the bent and need to buy a custom seat straight after?

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2018, 09:22:12 pm »
Gluteus maximus (Glutimus Maximus sounds too much like Boris Johnson).

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2018, 10:06:23 pm »
I knew it was wrong when typing but at work so needed to be quick so couldn't Google to get it right. Close enough to get my meaning across so I'm OK with getting it wrong. 

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #6 on: June 28, 2018, 10:08:18 pm »
Not a criticism - more an opportunity for a weak joke!  Hope you get a good solution.

Peter

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #7 on: June 28, 2018, 10:48:18 pm »
I'm sorry but I tend to blank out Boris Johnson. He's become hidden behind white noise for me.

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2018, 03:18:56 pm »
I wish I could say the same!

T42

  • Tea tank
Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2018, 03:43:42 pm »
Gluteus maximus (Glutimus Maximus sounds too much like Boris Johnson).

Can't see the connection between BJ and the arse. Oh, wait a bit...

Wasn't Gluteus Maximus played by Russell Crowe in Gladiator?

I've dusted all those old bottles and set them up straight.

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #10 on: July 18, 2018, 08:59:17 am »
I contacted a recumbent retailer and got told a ventiseat would probably cure the issue. Anyone think that could work?

BTW since this thread the pain starts later on. My ride into work, half hour, I get no pain. It's only 15 minutes into my way home. An improvement I guess. Probably means it's my route to recumbent legs, the buttocks pain. Perhaps a ventiseat might be worth a £80 punt. Cheaper than a full seat.

Any views?

Auntie Helen

  • 6 Wheels in Germany
Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #11 on: July 18, 2018, 09:08:17 am »
Gentility (autocorrect for Ventisit!) help a lot against slipping. I found it also changed the angle I was sitting at and the reach to the pedals in my Velomobile so bear that in mind.

I have a single layer ventisit but have replaced it with a triple as the single layer has some sharp ends that poke into my legs.
My blog on cycling in Germany and eating German cake – http://www.auntiehelen.co.uk


Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2018, 10:46:55 am »
Definitely get the thicker Ventisit, as it will compress somewhat over the first year of use (which may also mean some adjustment of boom length may be necessary).  And definitely get Ventisit, it's the best thing for breathability after a mesh seat, all other pad materials are markedly inferior.

No idea if it'll actually solve your problem, thobut.

Actually, I recall someone saying they found that switching from unpadded to padded shorts (or possibly vice-versa - it was a long time ago) helped with buttock numbness on a recumbent.  Might be worth experimenting?
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2018, 11:09:39 am »
I contacted a recumbent retailer and got told a ventiseat would probably cure the issue. Anyone think that could work?

Perhaps a ventiseat might be worth a £80 punt. Cheaper than a full seat.

Any views?

I have a couple of Performers - both with GRP hardshell seats. One has a firm but fairly thin foam pad with a fabric cover (which makes my back sweaty), the newer SAKI High racer has a Ventisit (or, more probably, a Taiwanese knock-off of a Ventisit). I have a proper Ventisit headrest pad and the construction looks exactly the same as the Taiwanese seat pad.  Both are comfortable.

But, the SAKI's Ventisit is quite coarse, in that the polypropylene (I think) mesh is quite stiff and if I wear only a cycling top, I can feel the mesh on my back - but with a vest base layer I can't feel the mesh.  The SAKI seat height is at the upper limit of my X-seam, so I often sit up at junctions, which means I have to 'hutch' myself up on the seat to be able to get both feet down.  That takes quite an effort as the seat pad grips my shirt and Lycra shorts - after a long ride that's even more of an effort!

I'd say that the Ventisit pads are well worth the money as they are comfortable and your back sweat is much less noticeable than with a foam pad.  But don't try riding on one in just a thin top!


https://flic.kr/p/Xh9K2z

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #14 on: July 24, 2018, 09:30:39 am »
Wow! Ordered a ventisit last night very late. Order received, payment complete and dispatch already. 2-5 days delivery. Should be here before holidays in week and half. I'm impressed. Just hope the pad is good now. Only got the thin one. Didn't want to reduce the effective seat size since it's not really big enough. Should be enough padding for comfort.

Anyone else found them good for prompt service?

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #15 on: July 24, 2018, 10:39:53 am »
They're very responsive to email too.  Refreshing given that most of the recumbent world (with the notable exceptions of ICE and HPVelotechnik) seem to do customer service when they get round to it.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #16 on: July 24, 2018, 11:15:49 am »
The UK contact for HPV is very good at replying I must admit. I emailed Through their website and he replied same day. I then contacted him directly since he was so helpful. Even an answer to the negative is positive if it is quick in coming so you can focus on another idea.

RichForrest

  • T'is I, Silverback.
Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2018, 02:09:53 pm »
This may not refer to you and you may know this already.
One thing I have noticed with new riders is that they try have the angle of the seat too steep and try to sit on the seat instead of using it more as a support.
I tend to start sat on mine but when I start riding I slide down so most of my glutes are not actually touching it.
It's mostly trial and error with seat position.
I tend to lay the seat back until I find pushing on the pedals pushes me up the seat due to no shoulder support.
Then I slide it along the frame/slide boom out to get the leg length correct.
When tilting the seat you will need to move the boom.
As you get used to it you will be adjusting things quite a lot, I still do after years of riding  ;D

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #18 on: July 24, 2018, 02:19:39 pm »
When tilting the seat you will need to move the boom.

Possibly not on a Streetmachine, as the HPVelotechnik seat brackets are arranged so the whole thing pivots around your hip joint, rather than the more usual arrangement where it pivots around a point somewhere under the seat.  The idea being that you can quickly swap the seat to a more/less upright position according to riding conditions.  Personally I don't see the point - I have the seat fixed (with bolts rather than QRs, to avoid squeaking) in the fully-reclined position.  Clever idea, tho.


Quote
As you get used to it you will be adjusting things quite a lot, I still do after years of riding

Quite.  I've found that riding a machine with a higher bottom bracket means that for some reason I now feel over-extended on the Streetmachine.  I've shortened the boom by about 5mm, which seems to be an improvement.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #19 on: July 24, 2018, 04:48:42 pm »
With my streetmachine I'm also starting sat more on the seat but as I lie back I'm rotating to lift my gluteus a bit more forward. I do slide down a little. Less so now as I've got used to my best position I think through commuting. I am still sat on the front end of the seat though.

My issue is becoming less the aches in the flutes which is dying down, more the fact I don't think the large seat is big enough for me. The seat range for the GT large seat is supposedly up to 6'7" that's two inches more than me so I should fit. The curve of the top end where you're head sits above the seat I think curves at least an inch too soon for my height. I have an average leg to torso ratio in that my legs do not look long or short compared to my body (nerd time - I measured my legs and torso once in the da Vinci style and pretty evenly distributed plus less scientific my suit trousers fit for length in the standard ones that came with the jacket in department stores when a lot younger)

So basically I think HPV got their height wrong for the seat. If it was the smaller seat I wouldn't even fit (plus it has large on the pad it came with).

I think I'm developing my muscles more for recumbents but I'm still slow. About 3mph and 5 minutes plus at times on my regular commute. Just glad I won't need to top 8mph all family holiday. It's a cruise for me.

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #20 on: July 24, 2018, 09:30:10 pm »
I've always ridden my ICE trike at maximum recline.
I didn't get on with the mesh seat as I was always slipping down on it and it didn't fit me due to my artificial arm.
The harness of it pulls my shoulders back which means I need a convex shape at the top of the seat.
I easily got this with a hard shell seat with a thin piece of polystyrene under my ventasit cover.
Quote
The curve of the top end where your head sits above the seat I think curves at least an inch too soon for my height.
If the top of the seat is digging in your back, try that trick.

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #21 on: July 24, 2018, 10:02:59 pm »
A shaped bit of polystyrene tapered into the base and top of the seat but mostly in the shoulder area to make it straighter. Might work well. Shave a bit off at a time until it fits. Then attach the pad.

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #22 on: July 25, 2018, 10:56:04 am »
I think I'm developing my muscles more for recumbents but I'm still slow. About 3mph and 5 minutes plus at times on my regular commute. Just glad I won't need to top 8mph all family holiday. It's a cruise for me.

I'm about 2mph on average quicker than my Giant DF machine, which donated many bits to my SAKI frameset 3 years ago.

But, many of my rides go across the mid-Cheshire sandstone ridge, or into the lumpy glacial terranes of north Shropshire, so neither are exactly flat.  I reckon that I could be significantly quicker on my 'bent than I am, but I'm chicken.  No doubt someone will enlighten me on the physics, but I take it easier downhill than I could, because I don't fancy an off at significant speed due to gravel and potholes on our local lanes.  If I had a reliable, smooth tarmac surface, then I'd be more confident to let the bike run and hence get the payback benefit of the gravity I've just paid to overcome on the way up.

I really don't want an A&E doc picking gravel outof my elbow again......


Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #23 on: July 25, 2018, 11:27:24 am »
Streetmachines aren't particularly fast.  They're quite heavy and optimised for comfort and stability rather than aerodynamics.  I can go like stink downhill on mine because I'm not utterly terrified of hitting some pothole/gravel and wiping out (it's less scary than an upright in this respect, because you don't feel that hard braking or some catastrophic failure of the front wheel will cause you to land on your face), but unless you can carry that momentum into a climb, you pay for it overall.  I find I more or less break even with an upright tourer at standard 1% rolling hills, if it's flatter the recumbent has an advantage, if it's hillier, the upwrong's faster, but then you have contact points to worry about.

The Red Baron, on the other hand, is fast on the flat, climbs slightly better than the Streetmachine on account of being 5kg lighter (although stability is more of an issue), and is usually slower downhill because while it's much more aerodynamic, you can't usually take advantage of that because you're terrified of hitting some unseen (because you can't see as much of the road in front of you) hazard that the bike isn't built to cope with.  It's a revelation on a nice flat bit of decent-quality road.

(ICE Sprint is much like the Streetmachine, but doesn't roll quite as well, high-speed cornering is an art, and you don't have to worry about balance on double-bastard hills.)


IME it's headwinds where they really win, but I'm mainly in it for being able to feel my hands properly after a long ride.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Glutimus maximus aches - seat or on my way to recumbent legs?
« Reply #24 on: July 25, 2018, 11:44:56 am »
I'm in it for a proper touring bike for £500. I figure lying down or sitting up doesn't bother me so I saw a different touring bike and got it. Feels different and I'm now scared at less than 30mph whereas 30 mph isn't anything to me on an upright df. I get scared at high 50s on my old road bike df.

If I'd spotted a really good df touring bike for £500 I'd not have tried the recumbent perhaps.

Since it gets used with a young child I'm not going fast. It's my commutes when the df commuter is dodgy that I try going fast. I doubt that'll be enough use to get my speed up on it. Mind you I don't see the SMGT as a go fast bike. It's a cruising along with kit bike. Commuting or touring.