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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Question: Is anyone out there commuting to work on a recumbant bike? Especially in a city/downtown setting where you have to negotiate traffic.

The reason that I ask is that a recumbant bike is showing up on our building's bike rack, and it has me scratching my head, wondering how well it negotiates traffic, etc. I work in downtown Washington DC - traffic isn't totally mental, but you do need a certain amount of quickness and manouverabilty in order to keep from being flattened during rush hour. Quickness and manouverabilty are two things that I don't associate with a recumbant.

To complete the picture, the recumbant in question is a [email protected] Rans - a very looooong and low bike.
 

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The owner/president/chief of the local Wheel&Sprocket bike stores commutes to work on a regular basis on a recumbent. I'm told he rides from the Mequon area down to the Hales Corners store, and then sometimes to the other stores, this route takes him through some heavy urban/city areas. A few weeks ago I saw him riding along Brown Deer road, a road that I try to avoid, high traffic, inattentive drivers, not a lot of room to lane share, the shoulder is a third lane and a curb with no actual shoulder, and lots of truck and bus traffic. He seems to do just fine on his 'bent.
 

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Greg, You've been at this long enough that you've likely started naming the regulars that you see nearly everyday in nearly the same spot. I have one on my commute that I've named The Torpedo. He's on a 3 wheel recumbent with only a slight bend at the waist to elevate his eyes for visibilty. I would estimate that he is basically at the height of cranks on a normal bike. He has a rack bag aligned with his head, so he'e really long. When I see him in the distance it looks like there's a torpedo speeding toward me.

He's there nearly everyday and I've been on this commute route for 2 years.

Scot
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
That One Is Pretty Cool...

Scot_Gore said:
Greg, You've been at this long enough that you've likely started naming the regulars that you see nearly everyday in nearly the same spot. I have one on my commute that I've named The Torpedo. He's on a 3 wheel recumbent with only a slight bend at the waist to elevate his eyes for visibilty. I would estimate that he is basically at the height of cranks on a normal bike. He has a rack bag aligned with his head, so he'e really long. When I see him in the distance it looks like there's a torpedo speeding toward me.

He's there nearly everyday and I've been on this commute route for 2 years.

Scot
I've exchanged pleasantries with that guy - I think that his trike is self-designed. He parks over by the airport most mornings and goes fishing. Pretty neat.

Do you remember the guy a couple of years ago who was commuting on a recumbent that had been "streamlined" with rudimentary bodywork built out of white corregated plastic and PVC plumbing pipe? I'll never forget the evening ride home when I came across the back-half of the bodywork lying on the trail by the Pepco plant.

It's funny; I've seen The Torpedo and a couple of other recumbants crossing the bridge and over near the Tidal Basin/Printing and Engraving area, but I've never seen one actually mixing it up in traffic downtown. I know that they have to be out there, and the fact that one has shown up at our bike rack confirms this. I guess that my question stems from the fact that I have to wonder what it would be like to navigate city traffic on a recumbant. Maybe I just have a limited imagination.
 

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Squidward said:
Isn't that dangerous? Most 'Bents that I've seen are very low profile and hard to see as a result.


that's why most have an orange flag sticking up off the back, and not just for commuting
 
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