I’ve been reading the recumbent blog for a couple of years. I think it is an excellent idea to start the ecovelo blog to get people to see bikes as transport rather than toys. Over here in the Netherlands bicycles as transportation are so common that it’s easy to forget that the situation is very different elsewhere.
For the EcoVelo gallery, I’d like to introduce my daily transport;
A black Challenge Hurricane tour with under seat steering that I bought at the end of last year. It was specifically made as my day-to-day transport. I use it for commuting to work and for grocery runs. Essentially it’s for all regional transportation that doesn’t require a car because of weight or bulk.
It has several adaptations to make it suitable as a daily transport; Sturdy Velocity Aeroheat ETRTO 40-406 rims with Schwalbe Marathon HS-308 tires. A low rolling resistance is nice, but comfort and puncture resistance (especially when driving onto a curb) are more important. A Rohloff 14-speed hub gear is used for reduced maintenance and the ability to switch gears while standing still. The front chain ring has 62 teeth while the rear sprocket is 17 teeth. This puts the 11th gear (1:1) at a cruising speed of around 23 kph. The chain ring has covers on both sides to keep pants out of the chain. :-) A chain tensioner was built into the top idler above the front wheel by Frank ter Braak from ‘de liggende hollander’ who built me this bike. Most of the chain is enclosed to help keep it (and the bike and rider) clean. Mudgards are also essential in this aspect, since this bike is used come rain or shine. Shimano XTR hydraulic disk brakes provide plenty of stopping power independent on the state of the rims. Rear suspension is provided by a Rock Shox SID element. The seat cover has two sides, one covered in leather for when it’s cold or wet, and a ventilated mesh side for summer. A B+M Lumotec senso plus headlight is fed by a Schmidt hub generator, while the rear LED light is fed by batteries. The rear rack carries a Radical Design large Allfa bag, which gives 30 liters of luggage or groceries capacity while maintaining a reasonably aerodynamic profile. An Axa Defender ring lock with attachable chain is used to keep the bike safe when parked outside.
Keep up the good bloggin’! —Roland