dinsdag 17 mei 2011

Sweat and pain: comfort in the velomobile.

 For ROAM comfort will be very important, Daytrips of 200-300km a day for several weeks in a row is not only exhausting, it can easily cause very annoying pain in joints or a rash because of sweating so much. I'm almost completely comfortable in my Mango, even on long rides, except..... my upper left arm developes a very annoying ghost pain that comes and goes as it pleases. That's why I made elbow pads in the sides of my ROAMango (yes, I am building a special Mango for ROAM). I first tested it in my current Mango Sport and was so happy with the result that I made it in ROAMango as well.
Another comfort aspect is heat. The Mango is not so hot as one might expect, because most of your body is in the shade, there is an airflow coming through the footholes and it is easy to maintain a good speed with a relatively low effort. Still, the deserts in the Mid-West of the USA can be very hot in the daytime and it may become awkward to cycle. As it happens we have customers all over the world riding our Mangos' and they sometimes have surprising strategies to counter extreme weather conditions. One of them is an Australian doctor that rides a Mango Sport Red Editon. BTW: he's made a very nice clip, showing all the features of his favourite ride.
It can become very hot Down Under and Paul uses a Flevobike roof during the hottest hours of the day, because he is in the shade that way. What's good enough for an Aussie, is good enough for me, but.... I think that this roof is much higher than needed and the attachment to the body is not how I'd like to have it. Well there are more Mango riders who feel that way and one of them, Reinhard Fritz, has found a nice solution that he posted on the German Velomobil forum. I made my own version and the result is on the photo above. A more detailed photoserie and annotations how I made it is on Picasa. It was quite a lot of extra work, it usually is when you make something the first time, but I think it will be worth while.

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