Wednesday, June 22, 2016


I have been in the market for a good folding bike that I can take when traveling. It was important to have a good and solid build. Too many hinges weaken and flex over time. I also wanted one that had descent components, non proprietary parts and did not break the bank. It didn't have to fold quick or tiny as I was not using it for commuting on trains or buses. It just had to breakdown small enough to carry in my car or motor home. My research led me to the Xootr Swift. One of my concerns was it's reported stiff ride. After all comfort is the reason I ride a recumbent. I was also not pleased with the low end Sram x4 rear derailuer and 8 speed 11/28 cassette with 52t front chainring especially given the $800 price tag. Fortunately, I found a dealer outside of Philly who had one in stock I could try. The ride was better than expected and the shifter worked well enough but I new it would be a matter of time before I would upgrade. There was a customer there who praised the bike and said he did many self-contained tours and was very happy with the bike. I later went home still pondering whether to buy. I later did a wide search on Craigslist and found an almost new one at half the price. It had upgraded 9 speed 11/32 cassette with Shimano 105 rear deraileur and a Paul Thumby shifter. After another 1 1/2  hr drive to Pa it was mine. My first ride was 26 miles and It was faster than my Fuji. Yesterday after adding kickstand, bag, water bottle cage and phone holder I managed a very enjoyable 41 miles at a respectable average for me. The stock seat is as comfortable as it's going to get on a traditional bike. Gearing was adequate for the hills in my area but I see upgrading to an 11/34 when this wears out. What makes this bike stand out is it rides like a full size bike and only weights 25 lbs stock, 5 lbs less than my Fuji. The small 20x1.5 tires make for a harsher ride but the chromoly fork helps dampen things. So far I am very pleased and should work fine for it's intended use.

Needs kickstand

Some pictures from the website in various folded states

Friday, June 3, 2016

May The Force Be With You

May started off slow with only 4 rides in the first 2 weeks mostly due to weather. The second half things picked up and I finished with a total 20 days and 725 miles. I even pedaled the last 10 days straight. Those last 2 weeks were quite warm and my pace slowed measurably. In order to keep things interesting I had 6 days and 165 miles on my Fuji beater bike. I enjoy the change and am good up to 25 miles before my butt starts complaining. I have a new seat coming so will see if that helps. I also have tires coming for both trike and bike. My right front tire wall started separating and was lucky to make it back intact. In all fairness the tires have over 7k mi and were due for replacement. Although I very much enjoyed my Tryker tires I have opted for the more durable Marathon per reviews. They are also less expensive. I also had a rear flat on my Fuji and noticed some wear. The bike does not have many miles but the tires are original and are 7 years old so I ordered some inexpensive touring tires on sale from Performance bike.
I'm not sure what's in store for June as we have a trip planned and I don't ride many miles as my wife does not share my passion for cycling.
That's it for now and I am really enjoying the warm weather and retirement.

Tour De Elizabeth with son and grandson Jesse

Side wall separating

Perfect day and rode 41 miles

Butterflies at lake