Recumbent trike choice

Joined
Jul 6, 2021
Messages
20
I have not started my project yet and I am open to suggestions as to my best approach. I have narrowed it down to a trike, because at my age my balance is not as good as it used to be. Since I live in the mountains there will be lots of low gear slow speed pedaling which I think will be much easier in a trike.

I am currently leaning toward the Warrior, but my biggest concern is being able to exit the low seat. I am about 20 pounds heavier than I should be, and part of my goal is to use the bike to get me into shape and back to my normal weight.

I have the plans for both the Warrior and the Timberwolf. I think that perhaps the Streetfox would also be an option and seems to sit higher than the Warrior, but I don't like the steering arrangement. I'm sure I could modify it though. I am a pilot, so a joystick would feel natural to me.
 
Joined
Dec 29, 2016
Messages
279
Location
Lanc's, England
Welcome,
The seat hight can be altered by a slight alteration of the frame design or by propping up the seat. If you look at most recumbent trike manufacturer they do low sport models and higher adventure models.
 
Joined
May 31, 2013
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3,243
Location
South Benfleet, Essex, England, UK
Several of us that started our Zombie journey on low-slung bents are finding that age is not kind and are now migrating towards builds with higher easier to mount/dismount seating arrangements.
I think my Python has a seat height at about 15 or 16 inches whereas my Tadpole is at about 10" or 11", one does notice the difference. ;)
Ideally I would like to get a seat at standard dining chair height (c. 17") because that presents no difficulty. :)
 
Joined
Feb 7, 2008
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3,314
Location
Nottinghamshire England
Low seats bring other problems !

You are closer to the dirt and any water/rain etc

On a tadpole you can mitigate the getting off by having a parking brake and a simple hand loop on the derailleur post , however getting up from a low seat will never get easier as you age ;)

The other thing is a delta is much easier to use in urban areas as it has a very small turning circle.

Paul
 
Joined
Jul 6, 2021
Messages
20
Thanks guys for your responses. It looks like my concern about disembarking is supported by your opinions and experience.
You are closer to the dirt and any water/rain etc
I am in northern California. Much of the year we get no rain at all, and when it does, I might look forward to getting wet. On the other hand, being down in the dirt is a real possibility.
parking brake and a simple hand loop on the derailleur post
I'm not sure a parking brake would hold once I start hoisting myself up and get my weight off the seat. I think the trike would simply slide backwards.
delta is much easier to use in urban areas
I don't plan to ever live near an urban area again. I spent much of my career working in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Houston and will avoid places like that like the plague. Riding a bike in any of those places seem about as safe as leaping off of a mountain wearing a wingsuit. I do live not too far from a city of about 90,000 that has lots of bike lanes etc., and there are many dedicated biking/hiking trails in the area.
never get easier as you age
This brings me to my motivation. I have gained 25 pounds in the last 2 years because I developed plantar fasciitis and had to discontinue my lifelong habit of running in order to stay fit. I tried upright biking but I have a prostate condition which I think was aggravated by the seat of an upright. I can't afford a swimming pool and I live 35 miles from the nearest public or membership pool. "Bent" biking seems to be the answer since it will be convenient and I will be more likely to exercise regularly. I am hoping that after a couple of months I will be able to lift myself out a lot easier than now, even if not as easy as it would have been 10 or 20 years ago.

Sorry for the long post.
 
Joined
Sep 16, 2018
Messages
1,116
Location
Netherlands
I understand that you prefer the indirect steering of the Warrior. You can make that also on the streetfox if upu want. You can even make the handlebars the way you like. Move them up or keep them under the seat like the warrior.
Afcourse with every change you make, you need to look if it will fit. Maybe you need to change some things to the frame, but that is no problem. You can always move the front wheels a bit forward, to get more room for the steering.
You can change the seat to what fits you best.

Noting is set, you can change the design to your liking.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2020
Messages
100
Location
Ohio
I made a warrior and by accident i found something that might be a solution for you. i used the goose necks from two of the donor bikes, and i put one in the hole on hole on the bike tube where it would normally go, and put a 5 inch piece of handlebar for holding my phone, however it has worked awesome as a handle to get up and down too.
 
Joined
Oct 19, 2012
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Location
Wakefield, UK
The problem with high seats and trikes is centre of gravity and falling over in turns. Making the trike wider helps with that but brings other problems such as access down paths etc. Handlebars can be designed in such a way as to assist in getting up and down. Possibly a Streetfox with Warrior style steering and bars coming relatively high to assist with entry and exit may suit or as Tom said a robust bar in the steering tube for nominally mounting mirrors or gps etc could easily double as an aid. Parking brakes do help.
 
Joined
Jul 6, 2021
Messages
20
Thanks. I did think about attaching handles above the head tubes. I also thought about making some side rails for hoisting myself up. I might try both before I paint and see which works the best.
 
Joined
Jul 6, 2021
Messages
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I am trying to find 2 BMX wheels for the front of a Warrior. It appears that BMX wheels do not use disc brakes. I have found numerous sets of front/rear wheels, with the front having a 3/8" axle and the rear having 14mm. (sounds like a mix of dimension units) In most cases the shipping cost is more than the product price.

Also, do I specifically need front wheels for the front of a tadpole, or will rear wheels work also? Can they be adapted to use disc brakes?

Sorry if these sound like newbie questions, but after all, I am a newbie.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2020
Messages
100
Location
Ohio
For the front warrior wheels, I ordered rims and hubs off ebay and had the local bike shop lace them up. The wheels were by far the most expensive part of the project, I paid 60 per wheel to lace it, the rims were 30 each and the hubs were 30 each. When i looked up trike tires I couldn't find them for less than $120, so it seemed a no brainier to me. I think a lot of the parts/specs in the PDF were more common when it was wrote and some new things have come out since as well like thread-less quills etc.
 
Joined
Jul 6, 2021
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some new things have come out since as well like thread-less quills etc.
I am still learning bike terminology and this is not yet familiar to me. What is a quill?
You have to lace them yourself
I'm not intimidated with lacing them myself. I have watched the video several times, and while tedious, at least I understand the process. I am prepared to expect an extended trial and error process to get each wheel spinning true.
 
Joined
May 31, 2013
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South Benfleet, Essex, England, UK
I'm not intimidated with lacing them myself. I have watched the video several times, and while tedious, at least I understand the process. I am prepared to expect an extended trial and error process to get each wheel spinning true.
Lacing wheels is pretty easy and a good skill to have mastered. I have heard of people paying "silly money" to get a bike shop to make up a wheel, and they often do it no better than the amateur but charge professional rates.
 
Joined
Sep 17, 2020
Messages
100
Location
Ohio
Regarding the quill, I would google it, look up threaded and threadless quill, because you need to have threaded quills for your donor bikes and it's good to be able to identify them if you're looking to buy used bikes. It's the part that holds the handle bars and connects to the front forks
 
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