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Would or have you ridden a 2 wheeled handcycle?

Old 05-25-17, 01:00 PM
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lovemachine
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Would or have you ridden a 2 wheeled handcycle?

Would or have you rode a 2 wheeled handcycle?
I have a buddy who rides or did ride a lean-steer Lightning and for him itís still not close enough to that bicycle feeling he is missing. I must admit that the third wheel does seem to ďsubtractĒ something from the experience. His Lightning frame is beginning to break in random places at the edge of the HAZ causing a loss of skin and on the road repair. We have decided that itís time for a replacement handcycle and we donít really need that 3rd wheel. He wants a 2 wheeler and at one time you could buy one. We have seen a 2 wheel production handcycle from the 90ís (Grove Designs) on Ragbrai and there is another one I have seen on the internet that is really tall and more of a recreational style (think chase lounge with cranks) although I donít think it was ever in even small scale production. In both cases they require a set of retractable landing gear outriggers that are deployed by some mechanism.
I have built recumbent bicycles in the past and am the MacGuyver type so I tackled it. As a proof of concept we zip-tied and duct taped a road bike fork on the rear axle of an Invacare XLT and removed the original rear wheels. This was done because the XLT was available and we knew the only new variable was the single wheel at the back. It was immediately apparent that this could work as we were both able to ride it quite well especially considering the redneck engineering attachment.
So this began the journey to make something light and maneuverable based on the head angle and wheelbase we knew worked from the Invacare bike. I drew up what I wanted in CAD and had enough tubing bent for 4 bikes frames in case we ruined some in the process. The design keeps the things we like about the Lightning and the Invacare XLT. They both have the upright body positioning we prefer for long term comfort and clear vision. We were not after the luge style bike I see so much of even though I am fully aware of the speed benefits. I also kept the headtube angle and wheelbase that was created on the ďredneck specialĒ. Adding the fork on the rear increased wheelbase and rake, both of which should help stability. On our first bike we will just swap out some of the Invacare drivetrain. The seat is going to be full mesh over a bent tube frame since I donít enjoy how sweaty the rubber foam style ones are. We are making headway on this and should be ready to tackle the drivetrain next. Our short term goal is to have it rideable on Ragbrai this year. Itís going to be close based on the speed of progress lately.
My question for all of you is... has anyone ridden a 2 wheeled handcycle and what were your thoughts? Awesome? Terrifying? Fast/slow? Heavy? Complicated? Pointless, no benefit etc. Would anyone purchase one if they were available? Would you test ride it if you saw it up close? Our collective experience on the ďredneck specialĒ was a combined ten minutes or less so itís hard to have a valid opinion. All I can say for sure is it was fun and we are excited about building a few.

Does anybody have any experience they would be willing to share? Does reading this make you want one or make you think Iím crazy?

Kwog
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Old 05-26-17, 06:01 AM
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hmmm, crickets.

I have never seen one?
I did not know they existed or was an option?
Not interesting to you guys?
No reason for it, why bother?

Would pictures help?

So here is the overall and the spring loaded landing gear assembly
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Old 05-27-17, 03:21 PM
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My wife is the handcyclist, not me. She would never be able to use a two wheeler because of her lack of trunk stability, but has been able to play with several 3 wheeled designs. My first thought is will that design turn ok at low speeds? I have seen one in person with a steering lock with the hands used as stabilizer and initial push off like a luger until fast enough to be stabilized. Interesting project none the less and good luck.
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Old 05-28-17, 06:18 PM
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esther-L
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I had never heard of 2-wheel handcycles. I have only seen the 3-wheel ones.
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Old 05-29-17, 10:40 AM
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As for trunk stability this bike is easier to use than a trike because you lean into a turn. The force generated by a turn never tries to push you off the bike, the bike is always under you since it leans with you. A company called Varna makes some 2 wheeledhandcycles right now, but I am told they are not able to be ridden by anyone without use of their legs.

Our experience with the test bike was that it was impossible to get seated by yourself without the landing gear but once you were in it riding was not a issue. It felt stable at slow speeds in spite of the flexible attachment.
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Old 07-21-17, 06:07 AM
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Hi

2 wheeled handcycling is a obsession of mine!! I bought a varna 2 wheeled handbike as seen on you tube "2 wheeled handcycling" it can be ridden without leg use but takes practice and isn't very practical other than on track. Although I expect in time it would be possible.

I have also built one myself but haven't quite got it right

Twicycle are bringing out a hand powered racer and its pretty cheap.
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Old 06-22-18, 04:59 AM
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Yesss, I love .it . Elevation and speed...
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