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First time riding

Old 04-18-22, 07:38 PM
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linberl
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First time riding

It's a very different sensation than on my 2 wheeled bikes. I feel a bit like I am sliding forward and slouching too much. It's very strange to move around on the seat left and right when I go over a bump. I haven't noticed any pain after riding, so that's good. I feel like the horizontal steering bars are a bit too far out but when I moved them in it made it harder to get seated; I may try setting them up as vertical after a few more runs to see which I prefer. I'm just used to horizontal so that's what I ordered, but they said it's simple to go vertical (but not the other way due to cable length issues). I feel bumps in my butt and back more than on my 2 wheeler because I always "posted" up off the saddle when I went over bumps. I don't see that as an option with a recumbent; maybe reducing tire pressure a little bit? i'm sure it will take a while to adjust but I do think I will like it. One nice thing is not having to put a foot down at corners lol. A couple times today I stopped and made myself sit back into the seat more because I felt like I was unintentionally scooting forward; not sure what the solution to that is. On a 2 wheeler I'd adjust the distance to the bars and the seat setback but on the recumbent my x seam seems to be absolutely critical and i can't think what else to adjust. The seat shouldn't go back/forward or that will mess with the distance to the cranks. I can adjust the recline degree but not sure what that will change or how much. Any thoughts on that would be appreciated.
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Old 04-19-22, 08:03 AM
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Horizontal handlebars on a trike? We need a picture of your setup. I've owned three trikes over the past 19 years and all of them had the handlebars designed so the part you grip is up, not horizontal. I can't see how I could get a comfortable grip on a horizontal bar. It is a real simple grip on one that is vertical or nearly vertical. I looked at my old Greenspeed GTO and the grip part of the bars are almost 90 degrees to the ground. On my Catrike 700 the grip is angled back toward the seat and that is a fixed angle designed by Catrike. You can't change the angle because Catrike uses direct steering. The only option is to move the grips closer to or further away from the seat. Handlebar position on Catrike 700 and Greenspeed GTO - see pictures below.
https://i.postimg.cc/k4WPqBhn/IMG-0716-Reszed.jpg
https://i.postimg.cc/wTsmJDtQ/greenspeed-gto-red-lg.jpg
You shouldn't slide forward in the seat if it is properly set up and fitted correctly for your size. When I set the boom on all of my trikes I used the same idea as with a conventional bike. My leg should be nearly extended when the pedal is the furthest away. I never paid any attention to my actual x-seam except to order a trike in the right frame size when there was an option. Two of the three trikes have fixed seats. No adjustment to the seat angle. The first one was adjustable and I just experimented with seat angle until I found the most comfortable setting. If you are sliding forward, are you sure the boom is set correctly? The GTO has a fixed seat angle of 40 degrees while the CT 700 is 25 degrees. Both are comfortable and neither one has me sliding forward.

I'm not surprised that the trike feels different from riding a DF bike. The geometry is far different so the ride will be too. Sometimes you can make adjustments to the seat straps that will make going over bumps less stressful. You need to adjust them so you don't hit the frame but otherwise the adjustments are there to make the seat absorb more of the shock rather than transmit it to you. There is a trade off with tire pressure. The higher the pressure, the less effort it will take to pedal the trike but it also means the tires take up less shock from going over a bump. Too low a pressure and you risk getting pinch flats if you hit a bump or curb. I just choose my routes carefully, avoiding the worst roads and getting the best ride I can with no pinch flats.
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Old 04-19-22, 09:37 AM
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A lot of trikes I looked at had the option of horizontal bars. It's just a piece that mounts to the vertical and can be removed if you don't like it. https://i0.wp.com/tridenttrikes.com/...ize=768%2C1024 On my df bike, I had to get a pro setup as I have one knee that allows a 1cm happy zone and if I'm out of it, that knee hurts. I woke this morning and that knee is hurting so I know something isn't set quite right. I did the measure the boom with just a slight bend thing but with such a tight tolerance for my left leg, I guess I will have to spend some time (and pain) tweaking it by tiny increments to get it right. But - with a big bucket type seat I don't know that every time I sit down I will be in the exact same position. There was only one option with the df bike. If I am sliding forward is the seat angle too upright or too low? My legs aren't strong enough to keep me from moving forward on the seat, they just get more of a bend. I've got the pedals set under the lower part of the ball of my foot - is that still right for a recumbent or should it be more towards the arch (platform pedals with straps here)? Also, I'm not a very big person and I feel like there's a LOT of width to the seat so I could easily be sitting slightly more to one side than the other. I feel like I need a seat belt, lol.

I probably need to tighten the straps on the seat - I bet they loosen the most in the first few rides, and maybe that will help with suspension. It's not unpleasant, just different in what I am used to there. I usually prefer my tires to be inflated close to max.
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Old 04-19-22, 10:09 AM
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For me anyway riding a trike is the easiest way to bike there is. Once you are clipped in, you can stay clipped in at stops. No wobbling around starting up, you just pedal off. Then of course the is the view. You have more than a a 180 degree view, and you can even look almost straight up in to trees etc. As far as bumps and holes, you are close to the ground, and can see them and steer around most of them.
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Old 04-19-22, 10:24 AM
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Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
For me anyway riding a trike is the easiest way to bike there is. Once you are clipped in, you can stay clipped in at stops. No wobbling around starting up, you just pedal off. Then of course the is the view. You have more than a a 180 degree view, and you can even look almost straight up in to trees etc. As far as bumps and holes, you are close to the ground, and can see them and steer around most of them.
Atm, I am still figuring out how to miss the bumps/holes with 3 different tire tracks, lol. It was a lot easier with one in-line. I do love not having to put a food down and balancing. Just need to get my body position spot on. I'm thinking if I recline the seat back just a little bit it will also tip the seat bottom back a bit and stop the sliding. Then I'll have to readjust the boom length I guess.

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Old 04-19-22, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by linberl View Post
On a 2 wheeler I'd adjust the distance to the bars and the seat setback but on the recumbent my x seam seems to be absolutely critical and i can't think what else to adjust. The seat shouldn't go back/forward or that will mess with the distance to the cranks. I can adjust the recline degree but not sure what that will change or how much. Any thoughts on that would be appreciated.
The seat, absolutely should be adjusted, forward or backward to achieve comfort for the rider. I don't know how you measured your x-seam, but depending on whether your back was straight, or reclined, whether your knees were locked, or even what shoes you were wearing when you measured ... it all can add up to different x-seam results. Still, your comfort on the trike trumps whatever number of inches resulted from your x-seam measurement. It sounds like you should bring your seat forward if the boom on your trike does not have adjustability to bring the bottom bracket back to you.
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Old 04-19-22, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
The seat, absolutely should be adjusted, forward or backward to achieve comfort for the rider. I don't know how you measured your x-seam, but depending on whether your back was straight, or reclined, whether your knees were locked, or even what shoes you were wearing when you measured ... it all can add up to different x-seam results. Still, your comfort on the trike trumps whatever number of inches resulted from your x-seam measurement. It sounds like you should bring your seat forward if the boom on your trike does not have adjustability to bring the bottom bracket back to you.
The boom is at the shortest possible distance. The seat cannot move forward or back; it can go higher or lower and recline can be adjusted. I have different shoes I can wear, one pair has a sole that is 2 inches (Dc Marten sneakers) and the other pair is normal sneakers. By choosing the right shoe I often can get a good fit, lol. Both shoes are extremely comfortable for me. I'm going to try reclining the seat just a little bit more, which I think will lift the front rim of the seat just slightly and maybe make me sit more "in" the seat so I don't slide. If that works to settle me, then I'll try adjusting length with my shoe choices and see if that works. If not, I might eventually have to cut a bit off the boom, but I'd rather not do that (resale value).
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Old 04-19-22, 02:33 PM
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If you are at the short end of the human height spectrum, cutting the boom may be what you need to do. I'm on the short end of the spectrum so bought small frame trikes that were properly sized with no cutting the boom until my latest trike. My Catrike 700 comes in a one-size-fits-all version with the possibility of ordering an extra long boom for extra tall riders. I did have to cut part off the boom on my CT700 to make it fit. Just took off 1/2" increments with a metal cutting blade on a circular saw. No big deal. A replacement extra long boom is $150 at Utah Trikes so obviously it would not be a deal breaker for many buyers considering the current version of the trike retails today for $3,550 plus shipping.

The vertical portion of the Catrike handlebars lets you move your hand placement back and forth on the bars. That allows me to find the exact right placement for my hands as I steer the trike.

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Old 04-19-22, 02:54 PM
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I added a pool noodle to the front of the seat to prevent sliding forward.
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Old 04-19-22, 02:57 PM
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Good to know if I have to cut the boom down it's not a big deal. The pool noodle idea is kind of genius, lol.
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Old 04-19-22, 03:14 PM
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Old 04-19-22, 06:56 PM
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Check before you do anything, but quite often you can cut the boom - the inner piece - so it'll slide in further. This only works if the end is bottoming out in the frame, for instance at the crucifix or on a bottle brazeon. Otherwise, you may have to get shorter cranks.
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Old 04-19-22, 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
Check before you do anything, but quite often you can cut the boom - the inner piece - so it'll slide in further. This only works if the end is bottoming out in the frame, for instance at the crucifix or on a bottle brazeon. Otherwise, you may have to get shorter cranks.
If I do need to shorten the distance, I might go with shorter cranks anyway - first of all I have the tools to swap them but no tools to cut a boom, and also shorter cranks would benefit my knee. On my df bikes, I ride with 160mm.
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Old 04-20-22, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by linberl View Post
I have the tools to swap them but no tools to cut a boom
All it requires is a hacksaw.
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Old 04-20-22, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Steamer View Post
All it requires is a hacksaw.
Don't have one, can't cut straight even with scissors, lol. And don't have the strength to make the cut either (medical condition). So I look for path of least resistance.

On the other subject, a change of shoes with sole width difference has made a big change in the trike fit. Dropping the recline ever so slightly also may have helped. In any case, left knee pain gone this a.m. after
riding yesterday, so now I know which shoes to wear, lol. Next thing is deciding on the handlebars. I can see where vertical. bars would be less tiring than horizontal; I tried holding the vertical post yesterday and
it's definitely more comfortable for my arms as they are closer to my body and more relaxed. The question is whether I will find I have the requisite hand strength to pull the brake levers in that different orientation and
whether I like shifting with the bottom of my hand grip rather than thumb and forefinger. It sounds weird to me but I think I will set up the right side vertically as that side does most of the shifting and see how it goes.
Getting things set up takes time.

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Old 04-20-22, 12:43 PM
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Originally Posted by linberl View Post
Atm, I am still figuring out how to miss the bumps/holes with 3 different tire tracks, lol. It was a lot easier with one in-line. I do love not having to put a food down and balancing. Just need to get my body position spot on. I'm thinking if I recline the seat back just a little bit it will also tip the seat bottom back a bit and stop the sliding. Then I'll have to readjust the boom length I guess.
After a while you pretty much compute in you head where to steer to get all three wheels thru rough areas. With a little time, it becomes automatic, and you dont even really think about it.
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Old 04-20-22, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by rydabent View Post
After a while you pretty much compute in you head where to steer to get all three wheels thru rough areas. With a little time, it becomes automatic, and you dont even really think about it.
I will be happy when that happens, lol. Right now I'm dealing with glass across pathways - thinking if I have to "sacrifice" a tire a front one is best because it's easier to change/fix a tube. Once I get my e-assist installed, I'll be putting a marathon plus on the rear so that would be the one to sacrifice. Avoiding glass was definitely much easier on my 2 wheelers.
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Old 04-20-22, 01:39 PM
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If you have a circular saw, you can buy a metal cutting blade at Home Depot ($5 Internet #202831043) or Lowes )$4 Item #125900Model #DW8725L) (as well as most other such stores). Far quicker and cleaner than using a hacksaw.
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Old 04-20-22, 01:55 PM
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I want to see a picture of this trike that has an adjustable boom and can adjust the seat's recline but can't adjust it forward/backward.
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Old 04-20-22, 02:04 PM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
I want to see a picture of this trike that has an adjustable boom and can adjust the seat's recline but can't adjust it forward/backward.
It's a trident spike 2.Spike | Trident Trikes, Recumbent Trikes, Chameleon Convertitrike, Stowaway Folding Trike
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Old 04-20-22, 02:05 PM
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Originally Posted by VegasTriker View Post
If you have a circular saw, you can buy a metal cutting blade at Home Depot ($5 Internet #202831043) or Lowes )$4 Item #125900Model #DW8725L) (as well as most other such stores). Far quicker and cleaner than using a hacksaw.
I don't have a circular saw. I really shouldn't even be allowed scissors, lol. Seriously, I have tools to turn, undo, etc., but nothing that cuts. even the electric chainsaw for the hedges isn't very sharp.
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Old 04-21-22, 10:33 AM
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It may not help to observe, or maybe it will: setting the seat to be more upright will effectively shorten the seat-to-pedal distance. Likewise, reclining back further will make the pedals further away. This is due to the construction of your hips, not the of bike.
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Old 04-21-22, 10:46 AM
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Originally Posted by BlazingPedals View Post
It may not help to observe, or maybe it will: setting the seat to be more upright will effectively shorten the seat-to-pedal distance. Likewise, reclining back further will make the pedals further away. This is due to the construction of your hips, not the of bike.
Interesting. I was thinking more of a recline meant I would slide forward as I was laying down more and more upright would shift my hips back into the back rest. I'll have to lock the brakes and play with the positions a bit more to see what really happens. I see reclining it pulls the edge of the seat back but was thinking my body would go forward more. It's all confusing and different from what I'm used to but I'll figure it out I guess. Woke today sore so delayed feedback from my body about the positioning. Trying to remember to just make small incremental changes, not changing too much at one time.
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Old 04-22-22, 03:03 PM
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I see in the specs that the x-seam range is 36"+ to 45"+. I am 5'10" with a 43" x-seam. I am not thinking that the boom on this trike needs to be shortened to fit anyone that is normally proportioned. Nor does there need to be any pool noodle placed to hold the rider back, because with a decent amount of recline, the seat will form a natural 'bucket' for the riders ... yeah. So ... we really need to see the o.p. on this trike. It may be counter-intuitive to want to stretch out and be all vulnerable to the worlds gaze but being scrunched up on a trike is just as bad as being too stretched out. There are published instructions online as to how to measure x-seam. There are probably videos as well if you are more of a visual learner. If you 'start' your explorations for fit on the trike with the results of your x-seam measurement off the trike, you may get better results.
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Old 04-22-22, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Leisesturm View Post
I see in the specs that the x-seam range is 36"+ to 45"+. I am 5'10" with a 43" x-seam. I am not thinking that the boom on this trike needs to be shortened to fit anyone that is normally proportioned. Nor does there need to be any pool noodle placed to hold the rider back, because with a decent amount of recline, the seat will form a natural 'bucket' for the riders ... yeah. So ... we really need to see the o.p. on this trike. It may be counter-intuitive to want to stretch out and be all vulnerable to the worlds gaze but being scrunched up on a trike is just as bad as being too stretched out. There are published instructions online as to how to measure x-seam. There are probably videos as well if you are more of a visual learner. If you 'start' your explorations for fit on the trike with the results of your x-seam measurement off the trike, you may get better results.
I am 5'4" and more torso than leg. with the boom all the way in, I can just set my heel with a tiny knee break on the pedal at full extension....if I wear my doc marten 2" sole sneakers. I'm not going to change anything for a while because after a couple rides it seems my body is adapting to the seat or visa versa, and tightening the straps has some effect now. as I get used to the recumbent position and the seat stretches and gets tightened up, I assume I will reach an "equilibrium" of sorts from which to make decisions. In the meantime, I will just put a little cushion behind my lower back if needed. i have excellent feedback from my left knee if something is off even a tiny bit, and I learned from my pro bike fit on my 2 wheeler to make tiny changes and one thing at a time.
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