Author Topic: Being tempted , but .....  (Read 3550 times)

Blodwyn Pig

  • what a nice chap
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #25 on: May 25, 2019, 06:58:14 am »
I'm 6'2"  +/- .   I have thought about them before, but seeing a frame for sale got me thinking and looking  and now I'm obsessed 😏.  What would be good price for a s/h SM gte, non Rollhof, but with all the whistles and bells?  £1k ?  More?  Less?

Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #26 on: May 25, 2019, 09:57:34 am »
At that height you should be able to manage a SM without problems. The GTe is a more recent Aluminium version, maybe 1 Kg lighter. There's one on eBay at the moment with underseat steering. You could make an offer. You'd be lucky to get a good one under £1k but prices of two wheeled bents are very variable. £1300 for a good one seems fair. But do you want USS and would you prefer a triple rather than a dual-drive?

Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #27 on: May 25, 2019, 10:02:06 am »
Comparative review of SM and Azub 6 here, http://www.nextstopwhere.com/2017/04/17/azub-vs-streetmachine/

Blodwyn Pig

  • what a nice chap
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #28 on: May 25, 2019, 03:17:52 pm »
Comparative review of SM and Azub 6 here, http://www.nextstopwhere.com/2017/04/17/azub-vs-streetmachine/

Haha! I've read that about 5 times! Most excellent.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #29 on: May 25, 2019, 03:58:08 pm »
Comparative review of SM and Azub 6 here, http://www.nextstopwhere.com/2017/04/17/azub-vs-streetmachine/

Very interesting (apart from the specific component stuff, which is less relevant if you're buying second hand).  Particularly the bit about the kickstand - I've always thought the Streetmachine's lowrider stand was one of the better examples of the species.  Admittedly, I've beefed up the ferrule on mine which greatly reduces its tendency to dig into soft ground (as does a parking brake[1]).

Suspect weight distribution comes into it, too.  It looks like they're loading the rear rack more than I tend to, and my SMGT does tend to tip over if I mount the panniers in the wrong order.

I may have to investigate this "SnakeSeal" thing.  I'm guessing they've got a V-brake style boot that fits inside the brake lever or something...


[1] Top tip: If there isn't a tiller in the way, a parking brake allows you to sit upright astride the bike with your feet on the (not necessarily flat) ground, hands-free.  (Which is a lot more convenient than it sounds.  Think phone-faff, snack-nibbling, glasses-wiping and similar activities.)
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Blodwyn Pig

  • what a nice chap
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #30 on: May 26, 2019, 11:29:36 am »
Hmmm! I've negotiated a price, but not so sure now. Went out this morning for a quick 50 km before brekky, and thought 'right I'm now on a SM, let's see what I encounter....2km in ...whoops! . Most of my routes, including my usual commute, transect a cycle way, and this has barriers, the low ones, and I tackle these by putting pedals at 6/12 o'clock and sail thro without stopping.BUT the height of these bars would foul the uss of the SM, and depending which way I go, there can be between 2 and 7 of these things, and each would mean a dismount and faff. Also I don't think the terrain is right, lots of narrow twisty lanes, with lots of stops, or busy Medway towns with its shockingly bad and aggressive drivers. Think I'll give it a miss. Shame really but I'd end up not using for what I intended.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #31 on: May 26, 2019, 11:47:27 am »
Point of order:  The cables hanging from the SM's USS bars are surely higher than pedals at 6 and 12 o'clock?

The lowrider rack might be an issue, however.

I must admit, I tend to avoid barriery cyclepaths (even on uprights), except when on a touring adventure.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Blodwyn Pig

  • what a nice chap
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #32 on: May 26, 2019, 12:41:43 pm »
The barriers are low ones, one side is lower than the 'upper 12 o'clock pedal, but the other is signicantly higher. So this mould mean stopping, getting off, moving round to the front, lifting up high enough so h/ bars bars clear higher barrier, then wheeling thro, remounting, and doing same again 1/4 mile further on, up to 7 times.   :facepalm:

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #33 on: May 26, 2019, 12:51:15 pm »
FFS.  One of the great things about the Streetmachine is that you can carry a portable angle grinder and a several of spare batteries without adversely affecting the handling...
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #34 on: May 26, 2019, 01:09:39 pm »
You can generally get away with hobby-horsing through such things rather than a full dismount, if they are anything like those on the side of the guided busway down here.

I can - mostly - manage to get through them by slowing right down and talking extreme angles of apporach, but your low speed handling needs to be good.
“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens

Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #35 on: May 26, 2019, 04:23:40 pm »
Maybe think again if one with above seat steering appears.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #36 on: May 27, 2019, 12:26:32 am »
You can generally get away with hobby-horsing through such things rather than a full dismount, if they are anything like those on the side of the guided busway down here.

I can - mostly - manage to get through them by slowing right down and talking extreme angles of apporach, but your low speed handling needs to be good.

Yeah, I can do most slaloms on the Streetmachine that I can do on an upright[1], as long as I keep my nerve.  Hobby-horsing is quick and easy if you can't.

But when it won't go past an obstruction, usually due to handlebars or overall length, it's a beast of a thing to manhandle.


[1] A proper-sized one.  Obviously clown bikes had an advantage for this sort of thing.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Blodwyn Pig

  • what a nice chap
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #37 on: May 28, 2019, 09:34:53 am »
Can't stop thinking about this bike . :facepalm: . How easy are they to manoeuvre when walking / pushing. Has any one fitted a handle to the front 'changer tube' the sticky up one, so that it can be lifted up from the front. So it can be either pulled or pushed into doorways, balanced on the rear wheel, bit like a one handled wheelbarrow? The other question to Kim , and others , why did YOu buy one? For touring only, for comfort, for fun, to be quirky?

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #38 on: May 28, 2019, 09:43:01 am »
You can generally get away with hobby-horsing through such things rather than a full dismount, if they are anything like those on the side of the guided busway down here.

I can - mostly - manage to get through them by slowing right down and talking extreme angles of apporach, but your low speed handling needs to be good.

Yeah, I can do most slaloms on the Streetmachine that I can do on an upright[1], as long as I keep my nerve.  Hobby-horsing is quick and easy if you can't.

But when it won't go past an obstruction, usually due to handlebars or overall length, it's a beast of a thing to manhandle.


[1] A proper-sized one.  Obviously clown bikes had an advantage for this sort of thing.

Yes - Length is the issue with the M5 with that great long fixed boom. Teh Cruzbike is much more maneuvrable in that respect, but that floppy front end can catch you unawares when you stop.

As to BP - why did I take up darksiding - a) I've always thought they looked cool and ii) comfort, I was finding my neck/shoulders and wrists aching after 75-80km, and arse soreness as well.  Resolved that generally by darksiding
“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens

Socks

  • FFCT rally, France 2012
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #39 on: May 28, 2019, 11:28:48 am »
Can't stop thinking about this bike . :facepalm: . How easy are they to manoeuvre when walking / pushing. Has any one fitted a handle to the front 'changer tube' the sticky up one, so that it can be lifted up from the front. So it can be either pulled or pushed into doorways, balanced on the rear wheel, bit like a one handled wheelbarrow? The other question to Kim , and others , why did YOu buy one? For touring only, for comfort, for fun, to be quirky?

Yes - I've used a spare aheadset stem on one of mine, with a short length of alloy tube where the handlebar would go.  Makes a good front light mount and also a handle to lift / hold the front end.  I find it easy enough to sit up and 'walk' through obstructions, occasionally have to dismount.

Why a recumbent?  Comfort (no aching or painful contact points even on long rides);  fun to ride and better visibility because I'm sitting in a natural upright position;. efficiency,  they just seem to roll along and once you've re-learned how to ride and developed the different technique and leg muscles ok on the hills as well.  Only exception is when doing an extremely hilly route I use a lightweight upright to make the climbing a little less difficult.

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #40 on: May 28, 2019, 12:20:13 pm »
Can't stop thinking about this bike . :facepalm: . How easy are they to manoeuvre when walking / pushing.

Easy to push on flat ground, you hold the top of the seat and walk, leaning the bike side to side to make the steering flop in the appropriate direction (works much like pushing an upright by the saddle, but the steering's a bit less floppy).  As soon as you need to reach a brake, you're leaning down to reach the handlebars, which is doable for short distances (think driveway, wheelchair ramp) but not something you want to make a habit of as a hillclimbing technique, because of the uncomfortable back angle.  You learn to ride at a pace that means you don't have to stop and push.


Quote
Has any one fitted a handle to the front 'changer tube' the sticky up one, so that it can be lifted up from the front. So it can be either pulled or pushed into doorways, balanced on the rear wheel, bit like a one handled wheelbarrow?

I've got an extra stem clamped to the derailleur post, for mounting of GPS, lip balm and bike computer, but you don't want to use that as a lifting point:  The centre of mass of the bike is somewhere under the seat, so to pick it up you grab the stem (the proper one, attached to the handlebars) in one hand and the top of the seat in the other.  You can then rotate around your axis to do an about turn in a tight space, shuffle through a kissing gate, walk up/down steps or whatever.

What you don't want to do is attempt to lift it by the front end.  Like most recumbent bicycles, you'll then have no leverage to control the bike's rotation and it will promptly tip over sideways[1].  This can be a problem on trains, because helpy people (nearly always men) will grab the front of your bike without asking and pull as you carefully position yourself and the centre of the bike over the Mind The Gap in order to safety lift it up or down.  On a bad day, they'll have no mechanical sympathy and will grab it by the lights or chainring guard or something.

For doorways, I lift the bike through with the handlebars at full lock (there's then enough space for both me and the bike to fit through the gap).  Unless there are front panniers attached, in which case I'll carefully line the bike up and push it through slowly from behind, hoping the steering doesn't flop unhelpfully before I'm through.  I'm not sure about the standing it on the rear wheel, that seems to be a tall people / lightweight bike thing and is generally contraindicated by the presence of proper mudguards.  Doesn't sound very safe to me.


Quote
The other question to Kim , and others , why did YOu buy one? For touring only, for comfort, for fun, to be quirky?

I was about to buy my first proper bike, and Charlotte OTP was selling it.  I embraced the wisdom of Ian Utting and learned to love my geeky nature.  I figured that if I didn't get on with it, I could sell it on for about the same amount, and buy the Ribble upwrong I had my eye on.

I soon found it suited my style of cycling (quite spinny, pacing myself on hills because Stupid Lungs), and - crucially - discovered that cycling didn't have to leave you with a choice between numb fingers or sore genitals.  Since you can do most things on a Streetmachine, I rode it a lot.  I've since discovered that its limitations are basically serious off-roading, audax-style riding beyond about 100km (unless it's really flat), transporting it by car, city traffic[2] and going round corners at speed[3].  I have n+1s better suited to these things, but it's the Streetmachine I keep coming back to.


[1] You could probably do a variation on the two-person lift that barakta and I employ to get the ICE trike through doorways sideways:  One person on the front simply providing lift, one holding the rear rack and (braked) rear wheel, to control the rotation.  But I'm not sure why you'd want to.
[2] You can ride it in traffic fine (it's a bent, so the drivers are better behaved around you), but stop-start is tedious, you can only see as well as a car driver, and you can largely forget about filtering.  Uprights are better at this stuff, particularly cheaper ones if you're going to lock them up.
[3] It's a tourer, and handles like a tourer.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #41 on: May 28, 2019, 12:55:14 pm »
... audax-style riding beyond about 100km, ...

I'm curious about this, as beyond 100km is when some of the benefits (particularly to my neck and shoulders) would seem to become more apparent.

Is there a more favoured recumbent for that kind of distance, or does the different climbing style rule them out?

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #42 on: May 28, 2019, 01:14:24 pm »
... audax-style riding beyond about 100km, ...

I'm curious about this, as beyond 100km is when some of the benefits (particularly to my neck and shoulders) would seem to become more apparent.

Is there a more favoured recumbent for that kind of distance, or does the different climbing style rule them out?

Climbing's about the rider, not the bike, but if you're riding long distances without full luggage, one that isn't built like a tank is clearly advantageous.  The all-up weight of my Streetmachine is about 24kg.

I reckon the ideal 'bent for audax - leg length permitting - is a large-wheeled high-racer:  Something that can roll well in comfort over bad roads without the weight penalty of full suspension, high enough up that you don't get splattered in the wet (Streetmachine height is fine in this respect), and can usefully draft / be drafted by riders on uprights.

And then choose kit that's appropriate for the job:  Lighter wheels with faster-rolling tyres than you'd have on a full-on tourer, not having a full set of over-engineered luggage racks, that sort of thing.

Which isn't to say you couldn't make a Streetmachine more suitable for audax by choice of components, but the same goes for a Thorn Raven Tour or Surly Long Haul Trucker - it's just not the best place to start, and n+1 applies.



ETA: Last week I did my first 200 in several years (injury, lack of fitness, other priorities) on my Optima Baron.  That's also not an ideal bike for audax, for somewhat different reasons: It's low down, so you get splattered in shit by every overtaking motorist, as well as the people who forgot to bring any mudguards.  Your view of the road in front is compromised in favour of aerodynamics, which is far from ideal on an unsuspended bike that doesn't react well to potholes.  As with an upwrong, your neck starts to suffer after a while, albeit in the opposite direction.  While your hands aren't bearing weight, the wrist angle isn't neutral like with USS, and I started to get a bit fed up with the two positions I have on the tiller.  It climbs okay, because it only weighs 19kg, and climbing is about the rider, but some concentration is required as it's a twitchy bastard at low speed, and unless handled with tranquility, the down-shift into the granny ring is liable to derail the chain (because nothing can shift a 22-36-50 chainset properly, and the drivetrain's complicated and finicky, because aero).  But on the positive side, it's insanely efficient: I was able to keep up with the main group for 2/3 of the way round, which is otherwise unheard of.  (I might have managed more if I hadn't had to stop for digestive reasons[1].)



[1] First control had laid on a special menu of grease or grease.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

fd3

Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #43 on: May 28, 2019, 02:28:31 pm »
Can't stop thinking about this bike . :facepalm: . How easy are they to manoeuvre when walking / pushing. Has any one fitted a handle to the front 'changer tube' the sticky up one, so that it can be lifted up from the front. So it can be either pulled or pushed into doorways, balanced on the rear wheel, bit like a one handled wheelbarrow? The other question to Kim , and others , why did YOu buy one? For touring only, for comfort, for fun, to be quirky?
I have a speedmachine, so a similar bike, but lower.  Initially I tried to steer it from the hamster bars when walking with it, but it is really simple to steer it from the headrest when walking (like an upright steered from the saddle).  I manhandle it through the house lifting it by the front boom and rear rack or rear wheel, it's not much harder than doing the same with DF (some of the increased difficulty is due to it being heavier than a DF).  Not tried it balanced on the rear wheel.
I got mine because I was bentcurious and because I wanted to go through the experience of learning to ride all over again (to be more sympathetic towards my kids as they learn).  It is like being a beginning rider all over again as I am far more timid at junctions and more aware of motorists and the space I need as I wobble about.  It's okay on towpaths, currently stressful in high parking areas as I can't see as much, but fine on your bigger/straighter/faster roads.  I can see that going out for a 20+ mile ride it would come into its own.

[/I could be wrong]

ElyDave

  • Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society member 263583
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #44 on: May 28, 2019, 02:59:49 pm »
last summer holiday was a smidge over 600km in 6 days, and included the last three consecutive days with all my touring lugage of 172/144/100km. 

day 1 was from Islay to Newton Stewart with three ferries, crosssing Arran, The Mull of Kintyre and the Galloway Forest
Day 2 the lower sections of Galloway Forrest and the flat bits to Gretna
Day 3 - Gretna to Kirkby Stephen with some lumpiness.

I'd say a 200 or more is well within range of a decently geared recumbent.  This was on my 700C wheeled S40, and I'd have been trying to build up to a 200 and then 300-400 on it this year if it weren't for being knocked off.
I would not have tried that route on my low slung M5, even though it has a lower bottom gear at 34x40 vs 30x32.  It's very reclined and I'm a bit too short so end up straining the neck to see potholes as Kim says.

“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.” –Charles Dickens

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #45 on: May 28, 2019, 05:26:08 pm »
I'm not sure about the standing it on the rear wheel, that seems to be a tall people / lightweight bike thing and is generally contraindicated by the presence of proper mudguards.  Doesn't sound very safe to me.

Just tried this:  You need a hand on the top of the seat to control the tipping of the bike (which ends up quite low down), and - presumably because the centre of mass is lower than a DF bike - the rear mudflap starts getting mashed before it reaches the neutral balance point.  Sort of thing that you might do if you really had to rotate the bike in a train vestibule, but doesn't seem like a good doorway strategy.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

fd3

Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #46 on: May 28, 2019, 07:24:00 pm »
I am more likely to lift the back and tilt it forward o; the front wheel.
[/I could be wrong]

Kim

  • Timelord
Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #47 on: May 28, 2019, 07:25:26 pm »
I am more likely to lift the back and tilt it forward o; the front wheel.

That's occasionally necessary for dangly bike spaces.   :(
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #48 on: May 28, 2019, 07:35:21 pm »
I reckon the ideal 'bent for audax - leg length permitting - is a large-wheeled high-racer:  Something that can roll well in comfort over bad roads without the weight penalty of full suspension, high enough up that you don't get splattered in the wet (Streetmachine height is fine in this respect), and can usefully draft / be drafted by riders on uprights.

Absolutely.  I've audaxed my 20/26 Performer over 100k and it's fine.  But my 700c Highracer would be much, much better.

Re: Being tempted , but .....
« Reply #49 on: May 28, 2019, 09:39:34 pm »
My first recumbent was a rans rocket swb. 20/20 . I found it very comfortable and among other rides  completed the Dorset coast 200 on it. I was about a hour slower than I had been the previous year and would have kept it longer if a trice explorer had not come my way  :)
the slower you go the more you see