Silly Wheel Question ?

Firstly i know nothing about these recumbant trikes but i really fancy having one .. but does the rear wheel size have the same effect as on a regular bike ? in that the larger the wheel the less effort required for the same speed ?

I'm looking at the Catrike road and expedition

Simon
 

mcd

Well-Known Member
Strictly speaking, comparing like with like, yes. But as on a regular bike, tyre selection and pressure have a greater influence on effort required.

A bike or trike with a 700C or 26inch rear wheel (excuse the mixing of units) will have a better selection and availability of tyres and inner tubes, and you'll not have to order extra large chainrings to get the same gearing.

I don't know much about recumbent trikes (other than compared with recumbent bikes they're easier to ride and a bit slower) but I'm sure there'll be someone along soon who does . . .
 
Location
EDINBURGH
I ride a Catrike Expedition, I could ride any of them but the Expedition is my steed of choice, the 26" rear wheel gives me a good gear range to work with and rolls nicely, I think the 20/26 combination is the ideal. I do ride the 20" wheel trikes as well and find them fine but given the choice the Expedition gets me everytime.

Obviously I am the importer so I have a vested interest but I am also an enthusiast.

There are a couple of Expedition owners on here who will offer their opinions as well I expect.
 

squeaker

Über Member
Location
Steyning
Muddyfox said:
but does the rear wheel size have the same effect as on a regular bike ? in that the larger the wheel the less effort required for the same speed ?
Depends what speed :becool:
The faster you go (or the stronger the headwind) the more aerodynamic drag matters (compared to rolling resistance), as Moulton showed with his suspended small wheel upright bikes (UCI banned, IIRC).
IMO 26 / 20 trikes look better, but are longer and have less room for luggage above the rear wheel - and loads high up on a trike are not good!
 

CopperBrompton

Bicycle: a means of transport between cake-stops
Location
London
A 20-inch wheel will accelerate faster, a 26-inch wheel will give you higher cruising speed for the same gearing. Suitably geared for the size, I can see no reason at all why a smaller wheel would require more effort other than a larger wheel can generally be inflated to a higher pressure.
 

Auntie Helen

Ich bin Powerfrau!
I have a Trice with a 20" rear wheel and it's fine, it also gives more options for racks and panniers. The downside is that the gearing is a bit more of an issue - in the lowest gear my rear mech is just a finger's width from the ground. If I'm going through rough terrain I make sure I'm in a mid-range gear at the back at least.

I did wonder about getting a 26" rear wheel on my next Trice (which is available), but I think I'll probably stick with the 20" and have a Rohloff instead to solve the gear issue. It means I only have to carry one size of tube, stock one size of tyre, and they are easy to come by as it's BMX/kids bike sizing.
 
Location
EDINBURGH
Auntie Helen said:
I have a Trice with a 20" rear wheel and it's fine, it also gives more options for racks and panniers. The downside is that the gearing is a bit more of an issue - in the lowest gear my rear mech is just a finger's width from the ground. If I'm going through rough terrain I make sure I'm in a mid-range gear at the back at least.

I did wonder about getting a 26" rear wheel on my next Trice (which is available), but I think I'll probably stick with the 20" and have a Rohloff instead to solve the gear issue. It means I only have to carry one size of tube, stock one size of tyre, and they are easy to come by as it's BMX/kids bike sizing.
It will lift the chain line as well, the rear derailleur length is proportional to the amount and size of chainrings you have front and rear. The Rohloff chain tensioner is nice and short.
 
Thank you for your replys .. speed is'nt a major issue as i'm a bit of a plodder anyway and enjoy having a good nosey at where im cycling through

I'l have a closer look at the Expedition

Simon
 

mcd

Well-Known Member
Catrike UK said:
The Rohloff chain tensioner is nice and short.
On some frames, with careful boom adjustment and a strategically placed guide you can dispense with the chain tensioner as well for that minimal look. :sad:
 

arallsopp

Post of The Year 2009 winner
Location
Bromley, Kent
...And rarely with a suspended rear.

My preference (sorry) has to be a 700 or 26" rear, just for ease of gearing. Even the 24" Furai tops out too early for me. Got a 60T coming that should sort things, but I suspect I could have done it all with standard cogs if I'd had normal sized wheels.

Unless someone wants to buy me a Rohloff. In which case I'll readily change my stance :laugh:
 

mcd

Well-Known Member
Catrike UK said:
Not with a double up front though.
With out getting into a tedious discussion involving counting teeth and working out gear ratios, why on earth would someone need more than one chainring with a 14-speed Rohloff :laugh:
 
Location
EDINBURGH
mcd said:
With out getting into a tedious discussion involving counting teeth and working out gear ratios, why on earth would someone need more than one chainring with a 14-speed Rohloff :laugh:
I don't know, but people do seem to want a ridiculously wide range of gears.

Personally I am thinking of a Rohloff with a 52 tooth ring on the front and standard 16 tooth rear, it gives almost identical gearing to my current triple.
 

arallsopp

Post of The Year 2009 winner
Location
Bromley, Kent
mcd said:
Why on earth would someone need more than one chainring with a 14-speed Rohloff :laugh:
The total range of a Rohloff is geared (pardon the pun) towards a relatively conventional upright bicycle. With less wind resistance than an upright, top end speeds extend considerably, so a bigger ring is needed up front. At the other end, a bent is often heavier than its DF counterpart, and so will want lower gearing for the climbs. Add in a third wheel, and you solve all the stability problems of climbing below 3mph.
Hence, two chainrings. :sad:
 

arallsopp

Post of The Year 2009 winner
Location
Bromley, Kent
(In light of Catrike's post, worth mentioning my current triple will offer ranges from 30/34 to 60/11. Sheldon'll do the math, but that's a pretty healthy range for 2 wheels.)
 
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