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Considering a recumbent for comfort.

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Printed Date: 22 April 2021 at 3:20pm
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Topic: Considering a recumbent for comfort.
Posted By: MeamoFan
Subject: Considering a recumbent for comfort.
Date Posted: 20 February 2021 at 8:59pm
I really enjoy cycling however I never seem to be comfortable on upright bikes. I’ve tried practically every type available and just can’t get comfortable, the best I’ve managed is bizarrely a Brompton. I even resorted to getting measured up in a shop who would then sell you a bike set up accordingly. They confirmed that I have a very long torso for my hight (1.83m / 6’). I’m wondering if a recumbent would make cycling more comfortable?

I did have a very brief ride in a recumbent trike around a circuit in a carpark many years ago. I seem to remember it was comfy although the pedals where to close for me. I also remember it had some quite amazing cornering abilities.

Posted By: Hanneke
Date Posted: 20 February 2021 at 9:57pm
It's really going to depend on your use case.

Just going around town and using it for transport? get a REAL dutch town bike.
Cycle touring/sport and excercise? then yes a recumbent will probably suit you nicely.

what kind of things are you interested in doing?

Posted By: MeamoFan
Date Posted: 20 February 2021 at 11:02pm
I have two use cases:

Short distances around town transporting a child (5km ish round trip). I was considering a cargo bike for this although when I see the price I start to think of a Dutch Grandma Bike with a child seat at the front.

The other is cycling lanes and sustrans routes in the local countryside. One area that I’m not sure about is the surface of the sustrans routes, it can get rather rough in places as it’s on well used farm tracks, although having said that I regularly ride it on my Brompton. Currently I’m never getting past about 20km round trip as the fun seems to run out at about 15km.

I have to admit I’d quite like to take my child as well on the longer rides but the only recumbent I’ve seen with a child seat is a Quattrovelo. It’s a bit out of my price range and I’m not sure it would survive the sustrans route.

Posted By: Hanneke
Date Posted: 21 February 2021 at 8:14pm
Ok so it sounds like a Propper Genuine Dutch town bike and possibly one with e-assist would be perfect for what you are describing otherwise perhaps something like a nazca paseo if you want to go down the recumbent route.

Bare in mind with the Dutch bikes you are generally looking at an intergrated lock, full mudguards and racks and a full grown adult can ride on the back with you, paired with dynamo hubs and internal gears in a more upright position, its no nonsense hop on travel.

A recumbent will be fantastic for longer journeys and exploring but it's not the sort of thing i would want to leave even remotely unattended.

Posted By: Kim
Date Posted: 21 February 2021 at 10:05pm
The main problem I find with leaving a recumbent unattended is that people come to gawp and fiddle.  That's manageable for touring, but for around town I prefer something less conspicuous (and less valuable).

Dutch bike (or maybe a crank-forward bike or compact-long-wheelbase recumbent) makes good sense for around town.  Or indeed a Brompton - I often use mine for the security advantage of being able to fold it up and take it inside at your destination.

Posted By: MeamoFan
Date Posted: 22 February 2021 at 9:07pm
I had assumed I was unlikely to find one bike for both use cases but thought it was worth mentioning both.

A Genuine Dutch bike sound like a good place to look regards transporting my child, this is a type of bike I have often admired and I even started to plan bringing one home on the Eurostar once.

Regards my second use case this is where I was considering a recumbent mainly so I can get further, improve my fitness and actually want to go cycling. I looked up a “nazca paseo” and that seem to be what I was imagining. I’m keen not to be to low to the ground or laid back to far, at least to start with.

Thank you for all your advice so far, do you have any further advice on finding a recumbent bike to buy second hand? I’m quite happy to put some work in to a bike.

Posted By: Hanneke
Date Posted: 22 February 2021 at 9:19pm
Best shot is to post a wanted post here and up on bentrider and checking ebay and FB Marketplace daily.

Posted By: Kim
Date Posted: 23 February 2021 at 11:32am
Originally posted by MeamoFan MeamoFan wrote:

Thank you for all your advice so far, do you have any further advice on finding a recumbent bike to buy second hand? I’m quite happy to put some work in to a bike.

My general advice to people new to recumbents is to buy something second-hand, mainstream (by recumbent standards) and reasonably easy to ride, on the assumption that it'll let you get the experience you need to make a more informed decision about what you actually want (height, seat type, steering, wheel size, suspension, etc).  You can then sell it on for about what you paid for it, and invest in your ideal bike.

Wanted posts on the forums are always a good idea.  And I usually recommend a visit to D-Tek, though I'm not sure if that's possible on account of lockdowns.

Posted By: BarneyH
Date Posted: 23 February 2021 at 3:51pm
Consider trying to get to a race meeting, hopefully they'll be back on - its a great chance to see and compare different machines and some of us are willing to help you try our machines.  Its probably the best chance to see the most recumbents in one place.

As for kids - I used a standard kiddie trailer behind my lowracer on several holidays often covering 25+ km and using it to carry child plus shopping on more than one occasion - its amazing what solutions can be found.

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