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The Star Bicycle

In the era when alternatives were being tried to the "ordinary" bicycle, many new configurations were tried.  One was that made by the Star Company, of H. B. Smith.  In this design, the small wheel was in front, with the intent of reducing the number of headers that riders suffered. The Star Bicycle was used by Lucius D. Copeland as a frame for his steam engine. 

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Restored Motobecane

I am declaring the 1973 Motobecane restoration done!  I have not been riding it lately because the Catrike Speed is so much fun.  I got a Motobecane headbadge, decals, a Cinelli stem, and Campy seatpost.  The saddle is the original Brooks Professional, and was always pretty comfortable.  The aero brake hoods are an upgrade from the original centerpulls. 

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Paul Arany’s Recumbent Trikes

I don’t know much about Paul Arany’s trikes, except they look like a lot of fun!

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Catrike Speed

I have been enjoying my newest ride, a Catrike recumbent trike, the Speed model, since the spring of  ’08.  I have been riding it to work about everyday, and building up my trike muscles.  Pedaling a recumbent trike uses different muscles from riding a DF (diamond frame), and it takes several months to build them up.  My ride from home starts with a fun little hill that gets the heart racing.  I have hit 38 on this hill, then on flat sections of my route I have hit 26 mph for short bursts. This video was shot after I had the trike for a week, and shows the fun part of my ride to work.

I have found that riding a trike is a lot of fun, and I have not touched my Motobecane since I got the Catrike. It is fun and comfortable, and commuting even in the winter has worked out well. There is back support, no need for padded crotch pants, nor padded gloves.  You also can’t fall over, and can crank up a steep hill as slow as you want. 

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To the stock trike I have added a chain guard, locking handgrips for the brakes, a rack, an air horn, and a speedometer.  The speedometer mount is a triangle of foam that is strapped to the telescoping boom.

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I am using a powerful tactical flashlight for a headlight, and it puts out 240 lumens.  Its a Surefire flashlight with a replacement lamp that really boosts the light output from the stock output of 80 lumens.  A special rechargeable battery lasts for 8 hours on a charge.  I have no idea who the old guy on my trike is in the picture below.

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SlowWheel Cycling innovation


Nathan Womack is a serious bike rider, serious enough that he wanted to ride at a training pace on rides with his girlfriend.  The trouble was that his preferred pace for training for triathalons was about 20 mph, and his
girlfriend’s pace is more like 15 mph.  He had the bright idea of making a wheel that would give him some resistance in his rides, so that his speed would equal his girlfriends speed, yet give him the training he wanted.

His solution developed into a bike product called the SlowWheel. The SlowWheel is a replacement rear wheel for a bicycle that allows the rider to increase the resistance of the wheel (in order to slow the rider down). Using the SlowWheel, Nathan and his girlfriend are able to ride together, and both get a workout!  The wheel can also be set to no resistance at all, for maximum speed.

Additionally, Nathan looks to have a children’s model out (for children under 5) that will go on a small bike with training wheels to help "slow" the child down as they learn to ride a bike. This will help in coordination as well as be an incredible safety device (as the children will not be able to get going so fast they get out of control).

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