Author Topic: Trikes on trains  (Read 6886 times)

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Trikes on trains
« on: January 15, 2012, 07:27:05 pm »
How have we not had a thread about this before?

So, I'm reasonably well versed in the issues of train travel with both a DF bike and a two-wheeled SWB recumbent - other than increased awkwardness round corners, they're effectively the same thing, trains-wise.

But now we've got a baraktacycle (2011 ICE Sprint RS) to deal with too.  We've successfully had it on the local commuter service by simply lifting it into the folding seat area wheelchair/bike space, where it will sit happily enough.  But long-distance services are likely to be more problematic.

Where it's folding seats and reveal-a-door toilets (London Midland, some CrossCountry services, most trains in the South-East), I expect it'll be okay to go straight on, or perhaps fold and unfold on the train if space is at a premium.  But what about Virgin and Crosscountry Voyagers and so on?

I assume Virgin's "no trikes" policy would preclude putting even a folded trike in the bike space (as staff will simply refuse to open the compartment)?  It might fit in a CrossCountry dangly bike space if folded, but has anyone tried it?

What's a good bike bag for turning a folding ICE trike into luggage?  Preferably without having to remove the front wheels...
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

barakta

  • Bastard lovechild of Yomiko Readman and Johnny 5
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2012, 10:10:38 pm »
How do Virgin justify a no trikes policy if they are similar size/shape as a bike?  I'd be inclined to pull disability on them except Equality Act / DDA doesn't apply to transportation (the vehicles themselves) and equivalent transport legislation doesn't kick in till 2016 or something poo.

Tim Hall

  • I want to eat the fleeting shade of your lashes
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2012, 10:16:14 pm »
How do Virgin justify a no trikes policy if they are similar size/shape as a bike?  I'd be inclined to pull disability on them except Equality Act / DDA doesn't apply to transportation (the vehicles themselves) and equivalent transport legislation doesn't kick in till 2016 or something poo.

Yebbut, a crispy fiver says the guard doesn't know that.  Blag it. A confident manner and/or a winning smile should do the trick.
There are two ways you can get exercise out of a bicycle: you can
"overhaul" it, or you can ride it.  (Jerome K Jerome)

CrinklyLion

  • The one with devious, cake-pushing ways....
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2012, 10:26:31 pm »
For X-country services, someone with a contact in the know might well be able to find out which services are dangly space provision and which ones are rather more trike-friendly HSTs.....  now who do we know that might be able to fid that out, I wonder....

rower40

  • Not my boat. Now sold.
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2012, 10:43:27 pm »
For X-country services, someone with a contact in the know might well be able to find out which services are dangly space provision and which ones are rather more trike-friendly HSTs.....  now who do we know that might be able to fid that out, I wonder....
The diagrams (of which units of rolling stock work which schedules) of the X-country services have been re-written since the timetable change on 12th December.  I've not yet got my head around it, but I'll have a bit of a browse tomorrow.

Word on the streetstation platform among the anoraksia is that HSTs cost lots more to run than Voyagers, so X-country are only running 2 per day rather than the 4 they ran last year.
Be Naughty; save Santa a trip

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2012, 12:55:30 am »
How have we not had a thread about this before?
........ snip .........
What's a good bike bag for turning a folding ICE trike into luggage?  Preferably without having to remove the front wheels...
I use This if I want to bag my trike.
Radical do a much more epensive one Here. I may get one to try.

To transport the bag on the trike. Just fold it in thirds and roll it up. It will then sit on top of the rack held in place by a couple of bungie cords.

The first time I used it I did take the front wheels off, but since then I just fold the back over and sit the trike on one wheel in the bag.
I don't think you'll even need to shortern the front boom to get the zips closed.
With the old fold I used to put the seat in the bag, but with the new fold and having sidepods on the seat I don't think I will.

On a mainline train I just leave it in the doorway passageway and move it from side to side away from the side which the platform is on. Wellingborough -> London
I also done the same with a folded trike that was not in a bag on non-mainline trains. London -> Oxford
Another option, which I have done, is to stand the trike on it chainguard in a doorway with the backwheel wedged against the roof. I did getting the 21:30-ish train from Brighton -> London.
As long as its quite and the main front-back passageway is not blocked, I find I get away with it getting a trike on a train. But having a bag does help with jobsworths.

Luck ........... :D

Pedaldog

  • A thinking-brain dog for Foul Ole Ron.
  • Fatter than Thou!
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2012, 01:06:46 am »
Cyleman takes his Trice on a lot of coach and train journeys using a bag/trailer combination. Try a pm and he'll almost certainly have a few photygraffs!

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2012, 01:08:13 am »
For X-country services, someone with a contact in the know might well be able to find out which services are dangly space provision and which ones are rather more trike-friendly HSTs.....  now who do we know that might be able to fid that out, I wonder....

Good thinking, but HSTs aren't an option to Brizzle or Personchester, both of which are fairly likely CrossCountry destinations for barakta-with-a-trike at some point, so a dangly bike space solution would be desirable.

(Though I accept that University-Chepstow on a Class 170 and a nice ride over the bridge is a generally better way to get to Brizzle from here with a bike)
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2012, 01:09:05 am »
I use This if I want to bag my trike.
Radical do a much more epensive one Here. I may get one to try.

To transport the bag on the trike. Just fold it in thirds and roll it up. It will then sit on top of the rack held in place by a couple of bungie cords.

The first time I used it I did take the front wheels off, but since then I just fold the back over and sit the trike on one wheel in the bag.
I don't think you'll even need to shortern the front boom to get the zips closed.

Thanks for that - exactly the sort of info I was after.   :thumbsup:
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Regulator

  • Got a thing for rubber...
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2012, 06:59:32 am »
I've got away with an unfolded trike a few times on the local trains.  The trick seems to be getting on to the train at an unmanned station.

That said, I got away with the trike onna train coming back from Brighton after a FNRttC.  The staff at Brighton station even opened the disabled gate to let me through - and the police didn't tell me off for cycling it through Victoria Station.
Quote from: clarion
I completely agree with Reg.

rower40

  • Not my boat. Now sold.
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2012, 01:29:29 pm »
here is the current thinking on which trains are formed of HSTs, from their supporters' club.

So Mordor to Brizzle can be an HST, with 3 such trains on Monday, 2 on Tues/Wed/Thur, 4 on Friday, 2 on Sat and 3 on Sun.  I can't help with Manchester, but a pirate carriage key on a Pendolino should sort this out.
Be Naughty; save Santa a trip

clarion

  • Tyke
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2012, 02:03:02 pm »
Mice managed to board a train at Liverpool Street with an unfoldable trike.  Don't suppose she even considered not being able to.  I guess if things don't cross her mind, they don't matter. ;D
Getting there...

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #12 on: January 18, 2012, 08:46:36 pm »
Cyleman takes his Trice on a lot of coach and train journeys using a bag/trailer combination. Try a pm and he'll almost certainly have a few photygraffs!

This shows Chris' Trice & Burley Nomad trailer bagged and the little trolley he uses to move it all about.



I've given up on the idea. It's a heavy carry without the trolley.  :)
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2012, 09:25:29 am »
 i just use the bag and put it onthe carry freedon city trailer these days . camping kit and trike in one go  ;)
the slower you go the more you see

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2012, 09:59:54 am »
If I was going get back into recumbent tricking again (and I would quite like to, I used to enjoy riding my Trice), and I wanted to be able to carry it on a train, I'd very seriously look at the HP Velotechnik Gekko, because of it's ease of folding, and quite reasonable price (or it was the last time I looked).

Dismantling, and ending up with a number of bits (any one of which could be forgotten or lost resulting in a massive problem) doesn't seem like a good idea to me, and the Gekko's fold is really neat. ;D
Actually, it is rocket science.
 

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2012, 01:59:58 pm »
Yeah, the Gekko's fold does seem fairly awesome, as does the doorway-compatible track width.  We dismissed it because while barakta's surprisingly good at supporting heavy things in her arms, she doesn't have much actual lifting capability, and the Gekko's fold requires the sort of manipulation while lifted that's liable to result in injury.

Given that a barakta-adjusted[1] Sprint should fit in a bike bag without removal of the front wheels, the only bits to remove are the seat and the flag, both of which should be fairly hard to lose, and the usual delicate accessories.



[1] I suspect leggier riders would do well to invest in QR levers for the boom.  We specifically avoided the QR set because barakta doesn't have the hand strength to operate them reliably without a tool, and if you're using a tool, you might as well stick to normal nuts and Allen bolts where it's less likely to slip.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #16 on: January 19, 2012, 03:40:59 pm »
......... the only bits to remove are the seat and the flag, both of which should be fairly hard to lose, and the usual delicate accessories.


Cycleman lost two flags at Craven Arms. To be fair though, a couple of schoolboys were seen running up the road with them  :)
Never knowingly under caffeinated

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #17 on: January 19, 2012, 04:03:26 pm »
To be fair, we've been doing a fairly good line in "Dammit, forgot the flag!" so far.  Fortunately this is usually on the way out the door, and becomes readily apparent when barakta tries to use the FMGenie, as the aerial is attached to the flag.

Incidentally, does anyone have any cunning flag-stowage advice, for when you don't need to fold the trike, but removing the you-could-have-someone's-eye-out-with-that bits makes it easier to carry round corners etc?  So far the best approach we've found is to stick the mast through the pump loops on the rack bag of my DF bike, with the flag wedged between the brake/gear cables, but obviously some way of securing it to the trike would be better.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #18 on: January 19, 2012, 09:40:51 pm »

Incidentally, does anyone have any cunning flag-stowage advice, for when you don't need to fold the trike, but removing the you-could-have-someone's-eye-out-with-that bits makes it easier to carry round corners etc?  So far the best approach we've found is to stick the mast through the pump loops on the rack bag of my DF bike, with the flag wedged between the brake/gear cables, but obviously some way of securing it to the trike would be better.

I've shortened mine to what I think is motorist eye level. When I take it out I slide it between the straps behind the seat.
Never knowingly under caffeinated

rower40

  • Not my boat. Now sold.
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #19 on: January 19, 2012, 09:54:53 pm »

Incidentally, does anyone have any cunning flag-stowage advice, for when you don't need to fold the trike, but removing the you-could-have-someone's-eye-out-with-that bits makes it easier to carry round corners etc?
On the Grasshopper, I put one end of the flagpole through the big hole in the seat, and releasable-zip-tie the other end to the front of the boom.  This has the advantage that no pesky meddling kids can then sit on the seat.
Be Naughty; save Santa a trip

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #20 on: January 19, 2012, 10:24:40 pm »
... This has the advantage that no pesky meddling kids can then sit on the seat.

I used to put a cable lock between the two front wheels to solve that, although I guess it depends on the position of the wheels in relation to the seat.
Actually, it is rocket science.
 

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #21 on: January 20, 2012, 10:40:42 pm »
If I was going get back into recumbent tricking again (and I would quite like to, I used to enjoy riding my Trice), and I wanted to be able to carry it on a train, I'd very seriously look at the HP Velotechnik Gekko, because of it's ease of folding, and quite reasonable price (or it was the last time I looked).

Dismantling, and ending up with a number of bits (any one of which could be forgotten or lost resulting in a massive problem) doesn't seem like a good idea to me, and the Gekko's fold is really neat. ;D

The Gekko fold is not without issues.

The frame is hefty and the fold is more likely to be performed with the right side of the trike on the ground. Also the chain twistsin the process which unships from the idler. Mine now has a chunk missing, and I am awaiting a reoplacement. The upgrade to Terracycle was disastrous as the chain simply would not re-engage and had to be repositioned by hand.



Finally the pin locating the wheels / handlebars centrally only lasts a few folds.



Having said that... when folded  it moves easily on a pair of skate wheels that are part of the seat.




The folded version has been on a train a few times now fully bagged without any issues

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #22 on: January 21, 2012, 04:09:07 pm »
Yes, I wondered about the chain twisting, but have never seen one in the flesh, just pictures and a few videos, so it was far from clear exactly how well that would work.

I'm always a bit nervous about any mechanism which twists the chain, as do some front wheel drive bike, whilst in motion (with a fixed pedal arrangement, but obviously turning wheel), and of course even traditional Derailleur don't entirely keep the chain in a nice straight line, although their bending isn't quite as aggressive as actually twisting the chain.

It still seems to be as efficient a method of reducing size as any recumbent trike I've ever seen, but inevitably the design will have teething problems, being fairly unique for this arrangement of wheels.  The fold on the Gekko reminds me a lot of the Brompton, which of course gets it's handlebars flat against the front wheel using a 45° fold.  I'm sure the original Brompton models had issues with the exact details of the fold, and reliability of the mechanism.

What do you mean by "The upgrade to Terracycle" ?
Actually, it is rocket science.
 

Kim

  • 2nd in the world
Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #23 on: January 21, 2012, 06:20:50 pm »
The ICE fold seems a lot more chain friendly, on account of doing it further from the idler in a flexible section of chain tube, allowing a larger radius (though being a chain, this tends to mean it finds a point where it naturally wants to bend, rather than forming a gentle curve).  The act of folding significantly de-tensions the chain, which helps.

I assume Cunobelin has replaced the stock (presumably plain) idler pully with a toothed one from Terracycle, molishers of fine recumbent-specific widgets.  While this is theoretically more efficient and less noisy, it sounds like HPV had their reasons.  Similarly, I suspect their use of a plain idler on the SMGT is because - depending on chainring sizes and boom extension - the chain isn't actually in contact with the idler in all gear combinations.
To ride the Windcheetah, first, you must embrace the cantilever...

Re: Trikes on trains
« Reply #24 on: January 22, 2012, 12:20:47 pm »
What do you mean by "The upgrade to Terracycle" ?

Terracycle do a high quality replacement idler that is a worthwhile upgrade


However the chain cannot be controlled when folding and unfolding which bent the sideplates, and eventually the plate detached.

I am still awaiting a rpely from Bikefix about the original broken idler.