Why drive when you can bike at 25mph? - Fuelly Forums

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Old 09-11-2006, 12:04 PM   #1
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Why drive when you can bike at 25mph?

If you're the average American, you end up with a ~37mph average speed while commuting. It would probably be worthwhile to just use a recumbent bicycle that averages ~25mph. You'd add ~50% more time, but could be getting a work out the whole time. Or better yet, add electric assist proportional to your commute distance and pedal as much as you want. I suppose this is too simple for most, who seem to be in favor of making things more complicated in order to make them more fuel efficient, but why complicate things when we don't have to?

P.s. The best part is when he passes the minivan passing the other cyclists! Now that is aerodynamic advantage...
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I think if i could get that type of FE i would have no problem driving a dildo shaped car.
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Old 09-11-2006, 12:23 PM   #2
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The only problem I have with recumbents Is that they sit low to the ground. I would be worried that car wouldn't see me. I guess you could put a flag on it but that will kill aero dynamics.

I can got 25mph on a bike. Maybee for 3minutes
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2008 EPA adjusted:


Distance traveled by bicycle in 2007= 1,830ish miles
Average commute speed=25mph (yes, that's in a car)
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Old 09-11-2006, 12:32 PM   #3
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I've heard a lot of riders do this with no noticable change in speed since the flag just moves with the wind, unless a wind sock or something similar is used. A small yellow or orange flag is connected to a flexible pole and at ~6ft in the air seems pretty visable. There are also blinkies that are supposed to be insanely bright even in the day.


Edit- Better yet, add a couple of these on the flag pole. I used to average ~15-17mph on my mountain bike during a 7-10 mile commute, but I'd have to work for that. I think my quickest average was over 20mph, running lights and pedaling my *** off, but I only did that once. With a lowrider it seems like a 10-12mph leasurely pace on an upright bike would be 17-20mph.
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Old 09-11-2006, 12:36 PM   #4
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You'd better stop posting such revolutionary ideas, or the MIB will be around

Great link - neat vid of the guy riding the recumbent.

I've never tried one, but always wanted to.
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Old 09-11-2006, 12:38 PM   #5
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PS: http://atomiczombie.com for DIY recumbents & other crazy home-brew bike machines.
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Old 09-11-2006, 01:06 PM   #6
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Sounds easy and I use my bike every day for short trips etc but unless you have shower facilities it quite a hassel It can be done but it like having kids every time you want to go some where you have to load up the survival kit. When your carrying a commuter bag a regular bike is better suited for that than a recumbent IMO.

http://www.wunderground.com/cgi-bin/...cast?query=aus
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Old 09-11-2006, 01:11 PM   #7
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atomiczombie's awesome! This blog has tons of info on building a leaning trike. It uses a cabling system to connect the rear pivot(?) to a set of handle bars up front, and I was thinking, it'd be easier just to use springs connected from the wheel struts to the main body of the bike so it would stay upright normally, and by leaning the rider would leverage the springs depending on how far away their center of mass was from the springs. Add another lockable headset in the front for tight, low speed turns, probably with conservative rake, and that would be something that can corner at high speed through leaning, as well as turn slowly in a tight radius with the stability of a three wheeled vehicle.

edit- In terms of carrying stuff, I think a small trailer in back is the best bet. In terms of commuting in the heat, as long as I had ~15min to cool off/stop sweating after, and changed in the bathroom at work, I wasn't uncomfortable or smelly. It was pretty hot..., but it sure wasn't a sweatbath! 70% humidity?
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I think if i could get that type of FE i would have no problem driving a dildo shaped car.
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Old 09-11-2006, 01:31 PM   #8
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To beat the heat, I bought a "hybrid kit" (gas motor ) for my bike when I lived for a short time in the Cayman Islands. (I'm sure I've mentioned this before at GS.)

Anyway, I used to motor to work, and pedal home.

I bought the kit online in 97. The company I bought from is apparently still doing a booming business. There's a bit about them at Autoblog Green today (along with a stupid item about fuel line magnets):

Getting 160 miles per gallon

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Old 09-11-2006, 01:45 PM   #9
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Ya know, one thing that bugs me is manufacturers won't make a sub 1hp gasoline engine. Most of 'em go 25mph on 1-2hp and get ~100-250mpg, but if there was a ~400watt engine, they could go 15mph and get 400-600mpg. If this gets ~200mpg, on a lowrider the speed would probably be ~30-35mph with the same fuel consumption, and a faired lowrider would just be crazy fast!
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Old 09-11-2006, 01:49 PM   #10
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Actually, the motor I had in 97 was much smaller than the ones they're selling now. I think it was a 35cc, and topped out at around 30 km/h (20 ish mph). It was way too loud though. I'm glad to read on the mfg's site that they're talking about better mufflers.

You can get electric hub motors in the 400w range. I'd probably just go that route now.

Edit: I never bothered to calculate my MPG. I just topped up the tank for about 35 cents a week and didn't worry too much about it.
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