I wrote the post below back in 2007, when I first started riding my Rans Stratus, the long wheel base recumbent that you may have seen me riding around the county. I had been riding “Long Green”, an older Rans that I got from Kevin Atkins, (thanks Kevin, you changed my life!). I had been riding my Trek hybrid on long trips for a couple of years, and developed a real pain in the neck from the riding position (in addition to a new computer job where my bifocals caused me to have a chin up position, just like when leaning over a bike). Both contributed, but I had to keep working, so something had to change with my riding, and thus the recumbent.
What a joy it was to ride pain free, and with the easy rider seating, I was free to scan the sky and surrounding scenery rather than the road in front of me. And with no pressure on the prostate and all, I was never going back, and least on the long rides.
So after my double bypass operation, I was not in shape to resume my normal 4-5000 miles/year schedule, but there was no way I was going to stop biking, and I bought a used Trek cargo ebike, and rode it around town for a year or so before wearing out the battery. I searched the web and 4 years ago bought my RadWagon, which has been a great city bike for me. But it wears on my wrists and butt on longer trips, and so with Emmanuel’s expertise, we retrofitted the old Rans with a front hub motor and a large capacity battery. Now I can again ride all the great ridges and valleys Monroe county has to offer in comfort!
March 2007- I looked all over web, trying to find the best LWB recumbent I could get for the price. If I were to buy new, I would have considered the Bachetta line, they look really good for the money. But as I cruised the few bike shops and bulletin boards that have recumbents, I found a 97 Rans Stratus that looked good to me. It was through easystreetrecumbents.com in Austin. I told the guy I ride a lot of hills and that my current bike has a 3 speed internal, which the 97 does not have. So I decided have him rebuild the back wheel with the internal gearing, and a Rans rack for the back. This should allow some longer rides, and the ability to move groceries, instruments, etc. around town without my numerous canvas bags. I am hoping it will be here sometime next week, I am still riding the LongGreen, but it is very wobbly at 20 mph, and the rubbing tire is tiresome. I hope I made the right decision, I expect that I will be using this for the next 5-10 years, and I figure I log over 4000 miles/year, counting both commuting and weekend riding. I would like to bring that up this year, with DST I might be able to get an extra 25 miles of an evening!
If you are interested in the recumbent style of bike, I have this Cycle Genius in the shop, 20″ wheels and super comfy seat, $650.