FIVE THINGS FOR NATIONAL BIKE MONTH

May is almost over but fellow triker David Goldman managed to get this video out while it is still May. (I almost typed April.) As usual he has a good message to us.

As much as I want to be out there riding I can’t. I am stuck here at home waiting on a technician from Frontier FIOS to show up to fix our internet service which has been going out frequently for a couple of weeks or more now. They said it was my router going bad so they sent me a new router which arrived yesterday. I hooked it up and it doesn’t work at all. I went back to my old router and it is working perfectly. And here I sit unable to go riding. We are having 4 days of rain with very few breaks in the rain where I could go riding. Boo Hoo! I really want to …

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GOING FEET FIRST

 

One thing is for sure … sooner or later we will all go feet first as we all have an appointment with death. However while alive we have the choice before us to go feet first … riding a recumbent, that is. Many have already discovered the joyful pleasure and great benefits of doing so.

Yep, it is appointed upon man once to die followed by God’s judgement of us. There is no escape from it … no way to avoid it … no choice. But we do have a choice to ride a recumbent and by doing so experience so very many great benefits. They are far more comfortable than a conventional bicycle. They are safer, more fun and still offer great exercise which may even postpone your appointment with death. BTW, there is one way to avoid leaving this world feet first. That way is referred to as the “rapture” where those who belong to God  will be taken up off of this earth to meet the Lord Jesus in the air. That is going up “head first” avoiding death here on earth and going feet first. Meanwhile, my plan is to continue going feet first on my tadpole trike. If you have already tried it you know what I mean. If you haven’t tried it I invite you to do so. I don’t think you will regret it.

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BUT I DON’T FEEL LIKE GETTING GOING

The weather sure makes a difference in how motivated I am to get myself out riding. I guess it has to be this global warming thing. Yep, it is so warm that most days this Spring have been and continue to be below normal. I went out yesterday and nearly froze out there. I need to dress for winter weather not spring weather. I am waiting for it to warm up before leaving each day but there is a problem. It is failing to warm up. Even the warmest part of the day is several degrees below what is normal for this time of year. And to make matters worse we have had some “teaser days” with the high temperatures in the 70 and even 80s, but the very next day it is back to much cooler weather.

This obviously is meant to be funny but it is not far from the truth. Of course, it is based on computer life. I used to see a lot of this back when I used Microcrap … I mean Microsoft Windows. Years ago I switched to Linux Mint and all the headaches that come with Windows are gone. With Windows there was something gone wrong to deal with almost constantly.

Some of you live in places where you can identify with what I am saying. Well, April is almost over with. We will see what May brings in the weather dept. Right now I need to go bundle up as if it were still winter if I am going to go riding today. 65 degrees is the normal high for this time of year. We are having weather 15 to 20 degrees below that. And we have been having quite a bit of wind as well so the “feels like” temperatures have been like winter days. It gets a guy down and is hard to deal with. There are times when I wish I could kick myself in the butt. Instead I sit down in the recliner chair and soon may be dreaming about nicer weather. If I were a rich man I may be living down in Florida but then the daily high temperatures are already hotter than I care for. I bet they don’t have any freeze warnings overnight like we do.

There are places around where the weather is pleasant but they lack trails to ride on.. I am not afraid to ride on roads with cars and trucks but I definitely prefer paved trails. Smooth winding paved shady trails and 70- 75 degree weather … AH, perfect in my book.

                                                  Toledo, Ohio bike trail

Recently I was at my LBS (local bike shop) and talked with the service manager. He told me business has been very slow due to the lousy Spring weather we have been having. Normally they are quite busy at this time of year as people are getting their bikes ready to ride. I know I seldom see any other cyclists out on the trails when the weather is not so nice.

It will be interesting to see if we just sort of skip Spring and mover right into Summer. I certainly hope not but it has happened before. Nap time for me and then I will be bundling up to go out for a ride.

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RAIN SNOW WIND & OCASSIONALLY A NICE DAY

It is that time of year. The weather is all over the place. One day can be in the high 60s and the next day only in the high 30s. Lots of rain but also snow coming down. And the wind … even on those high 60s days it is often quite windy. It makes for interesting trike riding. And definitely it is like playing Russian Roulette with our health as it is all too easy to get a cold and/or cough if we venture out for a ride. But I don’t let that stop me. Damn the torpedoes! Full speed ahead! Well, maybe half speed. We dare not ignore the wind chill factor. And there is yet another factor … a wife who forbids me to go out riding out of concern for my health. It is interesting that it is ok for me to go out riding on a winter day with temperatures in the 30s but come Springtime with fluctuating temperatures … nope … no can do. Sometimes I truly envy bachelors. Tomorrow is another day … just like I have been talking about … with below normal temperatures and definitely a bit windy. But hey, I am planning on going riding and do my best to …

ENJOY THE RIDE!

Yep, I am trying my best to  …

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WILLOUGHBY, NEXT STOP WILLOUGHBY

I am sure many of us will remember the episode of Twilight Zone entitleld “A Stop at Willoughby” from 1960. It was about an overstressed executive named Gart Williams who seeks escape from his troubles by napping on the commuter train he takes to go home and awakening, in dreams, on a very different train; an elegant, wood paneled car of a steam train peacefully rolling into the idyllic little town of Willoughby. What does this have to do with tadpole trikes you ask? Absolutely nothing! And then again … well, just maybe we too could enter the Twilight Zone while riding our trikes in so much comfort.

 

I mean if we are not careful it could happen. We could be riding along so relaxed  that we  border on falling asleep and entering our own dream world. The only problem is we are not running on rails so likely we would soon end up in big trouble as we leave the roadway or trail we are riding on. And then sudden reality takes over awakening us from La-La land. Obviously we best not ever let than happen. We need to stay awake and alert and do our snoozing when in the living room recliner and not our mobile recliner known as our recumbent tadpole trikes. They are comfortable enough we could get confused as to which one we are sitting in. I joke all the time about riding my trike saying that the hardest part of riding it is trying to stay awake. Yes, I joke about it, but isn’t far from the truth. I have come very close to falling asleep while pedaling along. If no harm would come of it I would be very tempted to allow it to happen, but I know better than that. It only happens on screen in movies and tv shows. In real life where the rubber meets the road our bodies all too often do too. If you want to stop at Willoughby do it the safe way …HERE  . While riding your trike do all you can to stay awake and keep safe. Don’t let the comfort you experience lull you to sleep or you may be entering the Twilight Zone.

I doubt very much if the end result would be the discovery of  Willoughby. It is most likely non-existent. You are more likely to end up like the man in this televison show. His stepping off of the train into Willoughby did not result in what he was dreaming. Not at all. Besides we all want to …

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P.S. — if you really want to experience Willoughby it starts by accepting the free gift linked to above. Death awaits each and everyone of us. It is what happens following death that matters. Gart Williams longed for Willoughby but had a hard rude awakening when he exited the train to go there. It is the same for anyone who does not have their ticket to exit this train we are all on called life on earth. A rude awakening awaits those who don’t have the ticket the Conductor offers freely.

Watch the video of …

5 THINGS ABOUT RECUMBENT TRIKE RIDERS

Fellow triker, David Goldman, shares with us “Five Things About Recumbent Trike Riders” in his video . I added the word Recumbent to his title as we are talking about recumbent and not about a traditional trike. Anyway, here is his video …

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RECUMBENT RIDE THRU SAGUARO NATIONAL PARK -TUSCON, AR.

Take a ride along with Sylvia and friends. The trails look so smooth and being in southern Arizona I would guess that they stay that way. A freshly paved trail up here in northern Indiana doesn’t last long before it is no longer smooth. Anyway, this sure looks inviting. There is only one problem as I see it … the comfortable weather for riding is short lived as soon it will be miserbly hot and last most of the year. Oh well, I don’t ever expect to be able to go there anyway. I will just have to enjoy it thru these videos.

Thanks Sylvia for posting this video sharing your adventure with us. I know I enjoyed it.

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BLAST FROM THE PAST

Some of us are riding old trikes which are serving us well these many years later. I bought my 2009 Catrike Trail new but the frame has been upgraded (replaced under factory warranty) due to a hairline crank alongside of a weld. Here is a picture of my 2009 Catrike Trail. I was hoping to get another “space frame” from Catrike, but they sent the newer type frame they were currently selling in 2013. I don’t like it nearly as well as the space frame but I had no choice. One choice I did have is the frame color. My 2009 trike was silver. I chose green on the 2013 model. They did not replace the boom so my silver boom was resused. It makes it unique. Anyway, for all practical purposes my trike is now a 2013 model. Even so, it is 9 years old and still going strong. I have replaced all three of the Catrike wheels with better quality (stronger) BMX wheels I had built. I also upgraded the Avid BB-5 brakes that came on the 2009 model with Avid BB-7 brakes. And I have had various derailleurs and sprockets as well as twist shifters. I have added various accessories as well as e-motor assist. Every time I ride it which is often I can truly say I have a blast on it …. a blast from the past. Here is a picture of my current trike … a 2013 model.     I am 75 years old and can say that I feel it … at least sometimes, but when I get on my trike and ride it I feel like a much younger person. That is a good thing. We all need something to help us keep going strong and enjoying life. Years ago some folks turned to Geritol. I don’t even know if it is still being made. I have not heard the name mentioned for many years now. A quick online search confirmed that the name brand is still around. Anyway my Catrike is my Geritol. I take a dose nearly everyday and it helps me immensely. Yep … I am having a blast riding it. I don’t know how much longer I am going to be able to say that. I hope for a very long time. In fact, when I draw my very last breath (should the Lord Jesus tarry) I hope it is when I am out having a blast riding my trike.   Getting into tadpole trikes was almost the best decision I ever made in life. And it has made me feel like a child again. Ya’ can’t beat that!

What is the best decision I ever made you ask? That is very easy to answer. The very best decision I ever made in my life was to repent and invite Jesus Christ into my heart and life. You can read about it HERE. It all started while sitting on the fantail of a US Navy destroyer at night looking up into a star filled sky and saying a prayer as an atheist to a God I knew not and did not believe existed. You can read about how God answered that prayer by clicking the link above. In the picture below the yellow arrow points to where I was sitting. It is the most important decision anyone can ever make and no one has  ever  regretted making it. All who have died without making it have regretted it. Of course, it is too late then. Their eternal fate is sealed. Jesus said, “I am the Way, and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6) I won’t dwell on that any longer other than to say that it is a most serious matter … one you can not afford to ignore and sweep under the rug. A BLAST FROM THE PAST and I see no let up as Catrikes are well made and daily provide me with fun, fun, fun … til my heavenly daddy takes me away.

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ONLY A RIDE AWAY FROM FEELING BETTER

Now I ask ya … what, if anything, is keeping you from getting up out of your comfortable perch and going out for a ride on your trike? Maybe you don’t struggle with this but many do. I am among them. I love riding my trike and I always enjoy it when I do. I do struggle with motivation however. I find myself procrastinating … putting it off. I have to force myself to get going. Once I am underway it is a different story. I am glad to be out there riding. I can’t explain it and I certainly don’t like it but I lack motivation to get started.

Fellow triker, David Goldman, tells it like it is … making the effort to get out for a ride makes a difference. Once again, I fully agree with him. Hang in there David! And may we all … ENJOY THE RIDE!

 

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IN OBSERVATION OF MLK JR HOLIDAY

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Note- My apologies for the appearance of this post. I worked hard to lay it all out right but for some reason it refuses to post the way I have it laid out. The video I have embedded is suppose to appear much further below but it is clear at the top blocking the title of the post. No matter what I attempt to do it won’t change.  BTW, the title of this posting is OBSERVING MLK  jr HOLIDAY.
 
The city in which I live, Fort Wayne, Indiana, was built on the confluence of 3 rivers. The St. Joe River  flows in from the north. The St. Marys River flows in from the south and then turns east and joins up with the St. Joe River where it continues east and the name is changed to the Maumee River. Our original trail system was built alongside of these three rivers and is called the Rivergreenway.  Of course, having rivers means having bridges to cross the rivers. Traffic flow into and out of a city with rivers is limited by the number of bridges available. One of our main north-south streets underwent closing the bridge several years ago to totally rebuild it. Of course, that was a major inconvenience but once the project was completed and the new bridge was opened for use it got everybody’s vote of approval. The new bridge is quite nice. It was dedicated to the late Martin L. King, Jr.
 
Here is a video of a tadpole trike ride over the bridge and thru  the east side of Headwaters Park in downtown Fort Wayne. Several of Mr. King’s quotes are displayed along the length of the bridge.
 

As seen in the video  the bridge is capable of displaying various lighting at night making if very attractive. 
 
 

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TIP OVER … HOW SAFE ARE 3 WHEELS?

Mr Bean has got quite a few laughs out of the little blue car that tips over so easily.

Every once in awhile the subject of tipping over on a tadpole trike comes up and there are always those who want to argue that a tadpole trike is quite stable and hard to tip over. I say hogwash! Tadpole trikes are very easy to tip over. I don’t understand why they think otherwise. If three wheeled vehicles are so safe why are not more of them built? Why don’t we see race cars and other 3 wheeled competition vehicles? So I ask ya … when is the last time you saw a 3 wheeled vehicle in NASCAR racing? You might find one in some sort of clown event being used to get a laugh or two. Have you ever watched motorcycle sidecar racing?  The passenger has to keep repositioning himself hanging way over the outside to keep the motorcycle from tipping over. The sidecar is specially designed and built for the passenger  to hang on.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

Why did Honda drop the 3 wheeled ATV and replace it with a 4 wheeled ATV? And why were there so many lawsuits against Honda over deaths and injuries involving 3 wheeled ATVs? The reason is simple and obvious … THEY TIP OVER!  They are not stable. They are not safe.

Yes, most of these 3 wheeled vehicles have the single wheel in the front like a Delta trike which we know tips over easier than a tadpole design with the single wheel in the rear. The same is true of cars. A tadpole design in cars is more stable than a Delta design. Never the less, they will tip over. Here is a tadpole style car showing the inside front wheel lifting off of the ground going around a corner and it was not going very fast nor did it suddenly turn causing this. The driver did not suddenly shift his weight causing it. It simply lifted the wheel.

I speak from experience … lots of experience. I have tipped over on my trike numerous times. It has mainly been while riding on uneven surfaces both on road and off road riding. I have tipped over sitting still. So when someone tells me that they have never tipped over on their trike I just accept it believing they lived a charmed life or don’t do much of anything on their trikes which so readily brings on these tip overs.

I am not trying to say that riding a tadpole trike is unsafe. If I believed that I would not be riding one. It is most important that you know and understand that tadpole trikes can tip over and learn to know their limits so you don’t end up a victim and receive injuries.

I will say this … I would love to have these outriggers on my trike to prevent it from tipping over easily.

Hey, …

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CYCLING WITH DISABILITIES FACEBOOK GROUP

There is a Facebook group for Cycling with Disabilities. I know nothing about it so I can’t share much of anything more. It is a Private Group with 295 members as I write this. This is a group dedicated to cyclists with Disabilities. The goal is sharing information, tips, technical bike info, stories and accomplishments. Share your stories of overcoming difficulties and tips on what helped you.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/502865517575070

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ARE BICYCLES ALLOWED ON INTERSTATE HIGHWAYS?

Is it lawful to ride a human powered cycle on an interstate highway? The answer to that is not a simple yes or no. However, most places it is not allowed.

“The short answer is that the majority of states in America still prohibits cyclists from riding on interstates and highways unless there is specific signage allowing bikes on them. And where it is legal, cyclists may be directed to take the first off-ramp marked with signs for bikes to use.”

Personally I would not want to if it was allowed. For those of you who would if you could … I suggest looking up “the particulars” on the matter …

 

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GOTTA LOVE THOSE CURVES

 

Now I ask ya … what guy doesn’t appreciate curves? No, I am not talking about feminine curves. I am talking about the kind shown in the image below …

I have never been one to enjoy monotony. I hate doing the same thing over and over. I need and thrive on variety. Working on an assembly line is not for me. That is just who I am. While riding my trike I very much dislike riding on a street or trail which is straight. I mean … boring! I truly appreciate it when this was taken into consideration in trail planning. Here is an example.

This short section of trail was going to be built to further take the trail onward. It could have been laid out in a straight line but they didn’t do that. Instead they purposely made it with several curves in it. You may not be able to tell it from this satellite image but it can be a bit challenging, especially if one’s speed is sufficient. It involves leaning into the turns. It can be all one can do to stay on the trail.  I love it!

There is nothing boring about riding this. It will keep you wide awake. Yep, I love curves and some hills versus a straight flat surface such as many rail trails are. Our original trails were built along our three rivers which, of course, means that they curve around quite a bit. And they have some hills as well. We have newer trails which I do ride, but they lack the curves and just are not as enjoyable to ride.

Some of our trails go thru city parks and they usually have curves in them as well.

I have never yet fallen asleep while riding my trike although it is comfortable enough I probably could, especially if bored enough. So keep those curves coming and I will do my best to stay awake.

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HOW NOT TO BE HIT BY A CAR

No one in their right mind wants to get hit by a car. This video gives good advice on how to avoid it.

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RIDING UP A 41 % GRADE

When I wrote my article on “It’s just a hill, get over it” I did not have anything like this in mind. I can’t say that this would be on my “bucket list” but is interesting to observe someone else attempt it …

Here is a view of Bradford St. from the very bottom.

And here is a view of Bradford St. where it is the steepest grade. I am wore out just looking at it.

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RECUMBENT TRIKE RIDING IS OFTEN GOOD PHYSICAL THERAPY

It should come as no surprise … riding a recumbent trike is often good physical therapy. Here is David’s testimony.

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HOW TIGHT CAN YOU TURN?

One thing that is important to me is having a small turning diameter. I hate riding a trike that requires stopping, backing up, going forward and repeating the process just trying to turn a tight corner. That is one of the things I have against ICE trikes. I jokingly say that it takes a football field to turn one. That is not far from the truth. That is poor design engineering in my opinion. This video explains the subject matter and uses ICE trikes exclusively in doing so. The picture above demonstrates the 14 foot diameter my homemade trike was capable of. My Catrike Trail has a 14 foot turning diameter also  if I remember correctly. Rarely do I encounter anywhere I ride that requires me to zig zag back and forth to turn a corner. A friend of mine has a Trident which can turn tighter than my Catrike.

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ALWAYS THE THUMBS

It is always my thumbs that get cold. Even if I manage to keep the rest of my hands warm my thumbs get cold. It is a bummer! I usually use mittens when it is the coldest. With mittens one can keep all the fingers huddled together to help warm one another, but those thumbs … they are out there by themselves … sorta sticking out like a sore thumb one might say. There just is not anyway to keep them warm. I have tried using chemical hand warmers which help but most gloves or mittens just are not made to include a chemical hand warmer along with one’s thumbs. It is very crowded in there and rather uncomfortable. So what is the answer? I wish I had one. If any of you know something that works please share it. And no, whiskey is not acceptable. I am doing my best to …

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