Wednesday, April 2, 2014

First Day of Spring Training, and Some Trike Modifications

For my first true Spring ride, I chose the cyclist's paradise of Shelter Island. Located between the North and South Forks of Long Island, the island offers varied terrain, good roads, excellent scenery, and minimal traffic off season.
The above map gives a good idea of the type of riding to be done here. As there are no bridges, the only way onto the island is by boat or by air. I chose the South Ferry out of Sag Harbor, and enjoyed the 10 minute ride. 
I am often asked how I transport my Catrike Expedition trike. Extensive pre purchase research led me to believe that I would be able to fit it in my 2012 Subaru Outback with the seats folded down.
The fit has been so easy, that I can now routinely put the trike in and out of the Subaru much faster than using the roof rack for my traditional upright 2 wheeled bikes. Success! For the Spring season, I have made two modifications to the Catrike. The first is to replace the middle and large chainrings with Rotor chainrings. The are a bit finicky to set up, but smooth out the pedal stroke to allow maximum power transfer. This gives me a very usable 30-40-50 chainring range. The second modification has been to replace the stock Schwalbe Marathon Racer tires with Schwalbe Duranos all around. The new tires have a lower profile and seem to be about 2-3mph faster than the Marathons. The inflation range is 85-115 psi, an I chose the compromise of 100 psi all around. Of course, the ride is not as cushy as the Marathons, but is acceptable under the circumstances. I believe that the Duranos will give me a better edge in the upcoming 110 mile Ride to Montauk on May 31.
Shelter Island is a great place to view wildlife, including numerous wild turkeys. This Tom had a brood of 8 hens. What a ratio!
As usual, the day came to an end. The ferry back was crowded with cars, and sometimes riding a trike makes one feel a little bit small. With two 1 watt Planet Bike flashers, and a bright flag, trike visibility has been very good so far. More than any of my other bikes, including my now sold Volae Century two wheeled recumbent, drivers seem to give me lots of room. Of course, I am selective in the roads that I ride, and avoid heavy traffic areas.

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