Sunday, April 6, 2014

Left Coast Velomobile Gathering

Back from the Left Coast Velomobile Gathering.  Lots of driving, not so much sleep and some excellent riding.  A very fun weekend.  Many thanks to Craig and Vicky for hosting the event.

This was the first time I could ride the Milan GT with other velomobiles to compare performance.  While I knew that the Milan was quick I had no real reference point.  After the first half of Saturday's ride I was more than a little pleased especially considering that I have not ridden much in the last few months.   Now I understand why Markus would start later in the mornings on ROAM and come whizzing by.  The folks at Raderwerk who designed the Milan have succeeded in building a very fast comfortable velomobile.  I was impressed by being able to climb a gentle slopes at reasonable speed.  Carrying momentum up the next hill was great fun.  On gentle up slopes the saved up kinetic energy sure cared one a long ways.

At the LCVMG there were a couple of other velos that were quite interesting.  I have always liked the sort of retro look of the Allweder.  There was one that was polished up to a high level.  It sure looked nice.  I checked out how it was constructed and it's amazing what can be done with aluminium.  There were also two chloroplast velos built on ICE trikes.  Nicely built and a good way to get into velomobile if you already have a trike.  While not quite as fast as a Quest or Milan they provided most (90-95%) of the benefits velos offer.  You would be hard pressed to go back to the bare trike after riding these.  

Here are a few of pictures at the Avila beach on the second day.



The previous day I managed to scare myself at bit.  I actually overdid it a bit and ended up going down a hill too fast.  I was reluctant to do anything but let it run out.  I didn't have my GPS on but was going at least the speed of traffic(55 mph if they were going the speed limit, doubtful at the best of times) and certainly a lot more than the 85 kph I have been at before.   Lesson for the future about keeping speed in check. I didn't actually have any trouble controlling the Milan GT it just felt way too fast, enough so that I was even reluctant to apply the brakes. I have since practiced braking from fairly high speed and am now more comfortable doing this. 

Here are more pictures of "Bubbles".  It  got stuck with this name before it even made it off the car.  



2 comments:

  1. Steve

    One of my trikes has a lot of brake steer--so much so that I hate putting on the brakes at anything over 35 mph as I don't know which way it will dart. The ICE trikes have none, and I have been over 100 kph with them and still felt safe. One of the things I like about my Quest is the center braking; with only a bit of fiddling, I can eliminate brake steer completely, even at speeds over 100 kph, which leads to a much more secure feeling when heading out of my house, down the hill. I know I can't grab as much all out braking power as I can with separate levers, but I know that it will be braking in a straight line. And if you were keeping up with traffic anywhere around Los Osos, you were going at least 100 kph.

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  2. Bubbles is a great name for a Velo. It is way better than the Yellow Submarine or the Banana Bike. I would think that the traffic on Highway 1 would be doing about 65 mph if the posted speed was 55mph.

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