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  #1  
Old July 27th 08, 12:48 PM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Tom Sherman[_2_]
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Posts: 9,890
Default TdF and recumbents

Pat ? wrote:
How would a recumbent handle the Tour?


Anyone that claims to provide a definitive answer is blowing smoke up
your backside, since the information does not exist to provide the
answer. You will find a lot a negative answers based on misinformation
by "experts" who have no experience or knowledge, however.

As a starting point, consider that there are only a few hundred state of
the art performance recumbent bicycles in existence (compared to tens of
thousands (or more) of state of the art upright bicycles), and most
people have never seen one unless they attend a recumbent oriented
racing series (and even there, most of the recumbents will not fit that
definition). Furthermore, of this relative handful of recumbents that
are lightweight (less than 8 kgf) and put the rider in an aerodynamic
position, only a small fraction are ridden by riders who could keep up
in a CAT 2 race on an upright, to say nothing of UCI professional level
riders. So all observations made of recumbents in the real world can
pretty much be thrown out as irrelevant to the original question.

Unless someone can demonstrate that upright riders can develop
significantly more sustained power than recumbent riders [1], there can
be little doubt that a recumbent with a seat-back 20° to 30° from the
horizontal and the pedals 20 to 25 cm higher than the seat will be
faster on the flats than a drop bar road bike or an upright TT bike.
This advantage becomes more significant in windy conditions, due to
lower wind speed within the 1 meter boundary layer between the
atmosphere and the ground. For equally talented and trained riders, the
recumbent lowracer would be faster during a flat to rolling time trial
or on a breakaway on a flat stage.

An upright sprinter can develop significantly more short term power than
a recumbent rider, based on the available information. However, as
anyone who has watched a race knows, sprinting prowess is of little
advantage, unless the sprinters are in the leading peloton near the
finish of the stage. Due to the lower frontal area of a recumbent
lowracer and the inability for an upright to effectively draft the
recumbent, the upright sprinters would not be in a position to use their
advantage in short-term power.

And of course, there are the mountain stages, where conventional wisdom
says that recumbents can not climb. The first thing is to throw out all
personal observations here, since they invariably involve recumbents
that are heavier than a state of the art CFRP lowracer and riders
considerably less able than a UCI professional.

The key is to remember that aerodynamic resistance increases with the
square of the rider's airspeed. Therefore, for average club riders, both
upright and recumbent riders will be going slowly enough that rolling
resistance and mechanical losses in the drive train will dominate, which
favors the upright. However, with a professional level rider putting out
400W on a climb, speeds become high enough that aerodynamics does
matter, even on a relatively steep climb, and an upright rider out of
the saddle is not very aerodynamic. Is the aerodynamic advantage of the
recumbent at very high rider output levels enough to compensate for the
advantages of the upright? I do not know, and more importantly, neither
does anyone else.

[1] The few studies down indicate that this is NOT the case.

--
Tom Sherman - Holstein-Friesland Bovinia
"People who had no mercy will find none." - Anon.
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  #2  
Old July 27th 08, 05:02 PM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
[email protected][_2_]
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Posts: 1,594
Default TdF and recumbents

On Jul 27, 5:48*am, Tom Sherman
wrote:
Pat ? wrote:
How would a recumbent handle the Tour?


Anyone that claims to provide a definitive answer is blowing smoke up
your backside, since the information does not exist to provide the
answer. You will find a lot a negative answers based on misinformation
by "experts" who have no experience or knowledge, however.

As a starting point, consider that there are only a few hundred state of
the art performance recumbent bicycles in existence (compared to tens of
thousands (or more) of state of the art upright bicycles), and most
people have never seen one unless they attend a recumbent oriented
racing series (and even there, most of the recumbents will not fit that
definition). Furthermore, of this relative handful of recumbents that
are lightweight (less than 8 kgf) and put the rider in an aerodynamic
position, only a small fraction are ridden by riders who could keep up
in a CAT 2 race on an upright, to say nothing of UCI professional level
riders. So all observations made of recumbents in the real world can
pretty much be thrown out as irrelevant to the original question.

Unless someone can demonstrate that upright riders can develop
significantly more sustained power than recumbent riders [1], there can
be little doubt that a recumbent with a seat-back 20° to 30° from the
horizontal and the pedals 20 to 25 cm higher than the seat will be
faster on the flats than a drop bar road bike or an upright TT bike.
This advantage becomes more significant in windy conditions, due to
lower wind speed within the 1 meter boundary layer between the
atmosphere and the ground. For equally talented and trained riders, the
recumbent lowracer would be faster during a flat to rolling time trial
or on a breakaway on a flat stage.

An upright sprinter can develop significantly more short term power than
a recumbent rider, based on the available information. However, as
anyone who has watched a race knows, sprinting prowess is of little
advantage, unless the sprinters are in the leading peloton near the
finish of the stage. Due to the lower frontal area of a recumbent
lowracer and the inability for an upright to effectively draft the
recumbent, the upright sprinters would not be in a position to use their
advantage in short-term power.

And of course, there are the mountain stages, where conventional wisdom
says that recumbents can not climb. The first thing is to throw out all
personal observations here, since they invariably involve recumbents
that are heavier than a state of the art CFRP lowracer and riders
considerably less able than a UCI professional.

The key is to remember that aerodynamic resistance increases with the
square of the rider's airspeed. Therefore, for average club riders, both
upright and recumbent riders will be going slowly enough that rolling
resistance and mechanical losses in the drive train will dominate, which
favors the upright. However, with a professional level rider putting out
400W on a climb, speeds become high enough that aerodynamics does
matter, even on a relatively steep climb, and an upright rider out of
the saddle is not very aerodynamic. Is the aerodynamic advantage of the
recumbent at very high rider output levels enough to compensate for the
advantages of the upright? I do not know, and more importantly, neither
does anyone else.

[1] The few studies down indicate that this is NOT the case.

--
Tom Sherman - Holstein-Friesland Bovinia
"People who had no mercy will find none." - Anon.


There are a couple of guys that ride recumbents and show up to up to
our weekend rides occasionally. One of them would never be able to
keep up with our group and the other could on regular bikes. With
recumbents they keep up with the group without problems. One of them
takes pulls at 25+ mile per hour without braking a sweat. On flats,
recumbents transform average cyclists into animals. The lower the
recumbents the faster these guys become. One has a very low racing
recumbents and he built an aero contraption in the back. He goes
really fast in that apparatus and because he is very low, it is hard
to draft him. He makes a great training partner. It's sort of like
motor pacing. On hills, he slows down quite a bit though. It is not
just the weight. His racing recumbent is not that heavy.

Andres
  #3  
Old July 27th 08, 06:01 PM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Tom Sherman[_2_]
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Posts: 9,890
Default TdF and recumbents

aka Andres Muro wrote:

There are a couple of guys that ride recumbents and show up to up to
our weekend rides occasionally. One of them would never be able to
keep up with our group and the other could on regular bikes. With
recumbents they keep up with the group without problems. One of them
takes pulls at 25+ mile per hour without braking a sweat. On flats,
recumbents transform average cyclists into animals. The lower the
recumbents the faster these guys become. One has a very low racing
recumbents and he built an aero contraption in the back. He goes
really fast in that apparatus and because he is very low, it is hard
to draft him. He makes a great training partner. It's sort of like
motor pacing. On hills, he slows down quite a bit though. It is not
just the weight. His racing recumbent is not that heavy.

For the sake of argument, let us assume that that a particular recumbent
is 20% faster on the flats and equal on the climbs to the group members'
uprights. If the recumbent rider is just the equal of the group on the
flats, that means he is a considerably weaker rider, so it is no wonder
he gets dropped on the hills. What is being demonstrated is not the poor
climbing ability of the recumbent (which is typically the false
conclusion made by the upright riders), but rather its performance
advantage on flatter terrain.

--
Tom Sherman - Holstein-Friesland Bovinia
“Mary had a little lamb / And when she saw it sicken /
She shipped it off to Packingtown / And now it’s labeled chicken.”
  #4  
Old July 28th 08, 03:49 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Edward Dolan
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Posts: 14,212
Default TdF and recumbents


"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
[...]
And of course, there are the mountain stages, where conventional wisdom
says that recumbents can not climb. The first thing is to throw out all
personal observations here, since they invariably involve recumbents that
are heavier than a state of the art CFRP lowracer and riders considerably
less able than a UCI professional.


Excuses, excuses, excuses!

The key is to remember that aerodynamic resistance increases with the
square of the rider's airspeed. Therefore, for average club riders, both
upright and recumbent riders will be going slowly enough that rolling
resistance and mechanical losses in the drive train will dominate, which
favors the upright. However, with a professional level rider putting out
400W on a climb, speeds become high enough that aerodynamics does matter,
even on a relatively steep climb, and an upright rider out of the saddle
is not very aerodynamic. Is the aerodynamic advantage of the recumbent at
very high rider output levels enough to compensate for the advantages of
the upright? I do not know, and more importantly, neither does anyone
else.


Aerodynamics is only part of the story. The other part is primate anatomy
and physiology.

Please rush me a telegram if and when a recumbent ever beats an upright in a
professional cycling race in the mountains.

Regards,

Ed Dolan the Great - Minnesota
aka
Saint Edward the Great - Order of the Perpetual Sorrows - Minnesota


  #5  
Old July 28th 08, 03:55 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Tom Sherman[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 9,890
Default TdF and recumbents

Edward Dolan wrote:
"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
[...]
And of course, there are the mountain stages, where conventional wisdom
says that recumbents can not climb. The first thing is to throw out all
personal observations here, since they invariably involve recumbents that
are heavier than a state of the art CFRP lowracer and riders considerably
less able than a UCI professional.


Excuses, excuses, excuses!

Ed Dolan demonstrates his ignorance of what is and what is not a
scientifically valid comparison.

The key is to remember that aerodynamic resistance increases with the
square of the rider's airspeed. Therefore, for average club riders, both
upright and recumbent riders will be going slowly enough that rolling
resistance and mechanical losses in the drive train will dominate, which
favors the upright. However, with a professional level rider putting out
400W on a climb, speeds become high enough that aerodynamics does matter,
even on a relatively steep climb, and an upright rider out of the saddle
is not very aerodynamic. Is the aerodynamic advantage of the recumbent at
very high rider output levels enough to compensate for the advantages of
the upright? I do not know, and more importantly, neither does anyone
else.


Aerodynamics is only part of the story. The other part is primate anatomy
and physiology.

Of which Ed Dolan apparently knows little. Has Ed ever read any of the
papers by Danny Too addressing this issue?

Please rush me a telegram if and when a recumbent ever beats an upright in a
professional cycling race in the mountains.

Please rush me a telegram when the UCI allows a recumbent to compete in
such a race.

--
Tom Sherman - Holstein-Friesland Bovinia
“Mary had a little lamb / And when she saw it sicken /
She shipped it off to Packingtown / And now it’s labeled chicken.”
  #6  
Old July 28th 08, 04:26 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Edward Dolan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 14,212
Default TdF and recumbents


"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
Edward Dolan wrote:
"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
[...]
And of course, there are the mountain stages, where conventional wisdom
says that recumbents can not climb. The first thing is to throw out all
personal observations here, since they invariably involve recumbents
that are heavier than a state of the art CFRP lowracer and riders
considerably less able than a UCI professional.


Excuses, excuses, excuses!

Ed Dolan demonstrates his ignorance of what is and what is not a
scientifically valid comparison.


Tom Sherman likes to take everything to its extremes. Frankly, I don't give
a damn what transpires on the freaking Tour de France, but I am interested
in what transpires on week long group bike tours where you have got a nice
variety of riders, most of whom are advanced. You will never see recumbents
outpace uprights going up hills on such rides - never!

The key is to remember that aerodynamic resistance increases with the
square of the rider's airspeed. Therefore, for average club riders, both
upright and recumbent riders will be going slowly enough that rolling
resistance and mechanical losses in the drive train will dominate, which
favors the upright. However, with a professional level rider putting out
400W on a climb, speeds become high enough that aerodynamics does
matter, even on a relatively steep climb, and an upright rider out of
the saddle is not very aerodynamic. Is the aerodynamic advantage of the
recumbent at very high rider output levels enough to compensate for the
advantages of the upright? I do not know, and more importantly, neither
does anyone else.


Aerodynamics is only part of the story. The other part is primate anatomy
and physiology.

Of which Ed Dolan apparently knows little. Has Ed ever read any of the
papers by Danny Too addressing this issue?


More blather about primate anatomy and physiology and less blather about
bicycle aerodynamics, if you please. Either get the equation right or forget
about it.

Please rush me a telegram if and when a recumbent ever beats an upright
in a professional cycling race in the mountains.

Please rush me a telegram when the UCI allows a recumbent to compete in
such a race.


Surely there are near professional type races in the mountains which pit
uprights against recumbents. Find out the results of such races and report
back to me. I am too lazy to do anything these days other than contemplate
my navel.

Regards,

Ed Dolan the Great - Minnesota
aka
Saint Edward the Great - Order of the Perpetual Sorrows - Minnesota


  #7  
Old July 28th 08, 04:58 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Tom Sherman[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 9,890
Default TdF and recumbents

Edward Dolan wrote:
"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
Edward Dolan wrote:
"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
[...]
And of course, there are the mountain stages, where conventional wisdom
says that recumbents can not climb. The first thing is to throw out all
personal observations here, since they invariably involve recumbents
that are heavier than a state of the art CFRP lowracer and riders
considerably less able than a UCI professional.
Excuses, excuses, excuses!

Ed Dolan demonstrates his ignorance of what is and what is not a
scientifically valid comparison.


Tom Sherman likes to take everything to its extremes. Frankly, I don't give
a damn what transpires on the freaking Tour de France, but I am interested
in what transpires on week long group bike tours where you have got a nice
variety of riders, most of whom are advanced. You will never see recumbents
outpace uprights going up hills on such rides - never!

Ed Dolan conveniently ignores the absence of world class riders and
state of the art recumbents on such touring rides.

Here is a hint for Ed - if upright A is faster than recumbent B at a
power output of 150W, it does NOT follow that upright A is still faster
than recumbent B at a power output of 400W, due to drive train and
rolling resistance increasing linearly with speed, but aerodynamic
resistance increasing with the square of speed. Such is obvious to an
engineer or scientist, but not to Mr. Ed Dolan.

The key is to remember that aerodynamic resistance increases with the
square of the rider's airspeed. Therefore, for average club riders, both
upright and recumbent riders will be going slowly enough that rolling
resistance and mechanical losses in the drive train will dominate, which
favors the upright. However, with a professional level rider putting out
400W on a climb, speeds become high enough that aerodynamics does
matter, even on a relatively steep climb, and an upright rider out of
the saddle is not very aerodynamic. Is the aerodynamic advantage of the
recumbent at very high rider output levels enough to compensate for the
advantages of the upright? I do not know, and more importantly, neither
does anyone else.
Aerodynamics is only part of the story. The other part is primate anatomy
and physiology.

Of which Ed Dolan apparently knows little. Has Ed ever read any of the
papers by Danny Too addressing this issue?


More blather about primate anatomy and physiology and less blather about
bicycle aerodynamics, if you please. Either get the equation right or forget
about it.

Mr. Ed is unaware of results showing similar sustained aerobic power in
both the upright and recumbent positions.

Please rush me a telegram if and when a recumbent ever beats an upright
in a professional cycling race in the mountains.

Please rush me a telegram when the UCI allows a recumbent to compete in
such a race.


Surely there are near professional type races in the mountains which pit
uprights against recumbents. Find out the results of such races and report
back to me.


Go to the article on page 14 about the Trondheim-Oslo event:
http://www.bhpc.org.uk/oldnews/Issue51.pdf.

I am too lazy to do anything these days other than contemplate
my navel.

No argument on that point!

--
Tom Sherman - Holstein-Friesland Bovinia
“Mary had a little lamb / And when she saw it sicken /
She shipped it off to Packingtown / And now it’s labeled chicken.”
  #8  
Old July 28th 08, 05:35 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Edward Dolan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 14,212
Default TdF and recumbents


"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
Edward Dolan wrote:
"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
Edward Dolan wrote:
"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
[...]
And of course, there are the mountain stages, where conventional
wisdom says that recumbents can not climb. The first thing is to throw
out all personal observations here, since they invariably involve
recumbents that are heavier than a state of the art CFRP lowracer and
riders considerably less able than a UCI professional.
Excuses, excuses, excuses!

Ed Dolan demonstrates his ignorance of what is and what is not a
scientifically valid comparison.


Tom Sherman likes to take everything to its extremes. Frankly, I don't
give a damn what transpires on the freaking Tour de France, but I am
interested in what transpires on week long group bike tours where you
have got a nice variety of riders, most of whom are advanced. You will
never see recumbents outpace uprights going up hills on such rides -
never!

Ed Dolan conveniently ignores the absence of world class riders and state
of the art recumbents on such touring rides.


Who cares about them. I only care about us amateurs. And among us amateurs,
it is no contest. Uprights win every time because of hills.

Here is a hint for Ed - if upright A is faster than recumbent B at a power
output of 150W, it does NOT follow that upright A is still faster than
recumbent B at a power output of 400W, due to drive train and rolling
resistance increasing linearly with speed, but aerodynamic resistance
increasing with the square of speed. Such is obvious to an engineer or
scientist, but not to Mr. Ed Dolan.


I am only interested in what a professor of human anatomy and physiology has
to say about it.

The key is to remember that aerodynamic resistance increases with the
square of the rider's airspeed. Therefore, for average club riders,
both upright and recumbent riders will be going slowly enough that
rolling resistance and mechanical losses in the drive train will
dominate, which favors the upright. However, with a professional level
rider putting out 400W on a climb, speeds become high enough that
aerodynamics does matter, even on a relatively steep climb, and an
upright rider out of the saddle is not very aerodynamic. Is the
aerodynamic advantage of the recumbent at very high rider output
levels enough to compensate for the advantages of the upright? I do
not know, and more importantly, neither does anyone else.
Aerodynamics is only part of the story. The other part is primate
anatomy and physiology.

Of which Ed Dolan apparently knows little. Has Ed ever read any of the
papers by Danny Too addressing this issue?


More blather about primate anatomy and physiology and less blather about
bicycle aerodynamics, if you please. Either get the equation right or
forget about it.

Mr. Ed is unaware of results showing similar sustained aerobic power in
both the upright and recumbent positions.


That is impossible. We did not evolve to be recumbent, but to be upright.
You have got humans confused with slugs.

Please rush me a telegram if and when a recumbent ever beats an upright
in a professional cycling race in the mountains.

Please rush me a telegram when the UCI allows a recumbent to compete in
such a race.


Surely there are near professional type races in the mountains which pit
uprights against recumbents. Find out the results of such races and
report back to me.


Go to the article on page 14 about the Trondheim-Oslo event:
http://www.bhpc.org.uk/oldnews/Issue51.pdf.


Some other time as I am presently having an attack of lethargy.

I am too lazy to do anything these days other than contemplate my navel.

No argument on that point!


I am becoming a Brooding Buddha in my old age.

Regards,

Ed Dolan the Great - Minnesota
aka
Saint Edward the Great - Order of the Perpetual Sorrows - Minnesota


  #9  
Old July 28th 08, 08:11 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Jack
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7
Default TdF and recumbents

On 27 jul, 13:48, Tom Sherman
wrote:
Pat ? wrote:
How would a recumbent handle the Tour?


Anyone that claims to provide a definitive answer is blowing smoke up
your backside, since the information does not exist to provide the
answer. You will find a lot a negative answers based on misinformation
by "experts" who have no experience or knowledge, however.

snip

Hello,
i would not like to give an answer but i would like to give the world
to one of the people who should have some experience and knowledge
about the Tour, and with that riding long distances in mountainous
terrain, mr. Lance Armstrong
http://velonews.com/article/3437
greetings,
Jack
  #10  
Old July 28th 08, 11:56 AM posted to rec.bicycles.tech,alt.rec.bicycles.recumbent
Edward Dolan
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 14,212
Default TdF and recumbents


"Tom Sherman" wrote in message
...
Edward Dolan wrote:

[...]
Surely there are near professional type races in the mountains which pit
uprights against recumbents. Find out the results of such races and
report back to me.


Go to the article on page 14 about the Trondheim-Oslo event:
http://www.bhpc.org.uk/oldnews/Issue51.pdf.


An interesting pdf, but too much of that British HPV stuff will rot your
brain.

I will admit that a recumbent with a full body fairing can be amazingly
fast. I still don't think they can be all that fast going up a steep hill
though.

I remember a tour I was on (BRAN I think) and there was this rather chubby
guy who had a RANS Tailwind with a full body fairing (home made). No one
could catch him once he got going. He was also fast going up hills provided
they were not too steep.

I think to be fair about this, you would have to pit a faired recumbent
against a faired upright in a largely mountainous terrain. Otherwise, you
are comparing apples to oranges and not getting to the heart of the
question, which is - can recumbents climb hills as well as uprights? I say
no.

Regards,

Ed Dolan the Great - Minnesota
aka
Saint Edward the Great - Order of the Perpetual Sorrows - Minnesota



 




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