I've now got some rides on the Primo Comets that I installed a while back on my recumbent bike. The following data compiled does indeed prove that the Comets at 1.5" width are slower than the previous 1.1" tires I have been riding since putting the HP Velotechnik into service.
My recumbent was designed for long distance touring in all conditions and road surfaces. For this reason the bike was stocked originally with tires having a wide smooth tread as opposed to narrow high speed tires. Re-installing the Primo's has given me an opportunity to let some pressure out of the tires and do some mild off pavement riding. Off roading is something I have not experienced on the recumbent. With the primo's deflated to about 30 psi I am pleasantly surprised at the bikes good handling on both slow climbs and downhill. The front and rear suspension is much more noticeable off the road and worked well at both low and high speeds.
Let's crunch some numbers. Following is ride data since installing the Comet Primos:
Ride 1 Surface: road 8.2 miles 11.8 average speed
Ride 2 Surface: road/dirt 2 track 15.5 miles 11.6 average speed
Ride 3 Surface: road 20.0 miles 12.2 average speed
Ride 4 Surface: road 9.5 miles 9.8 average speed
Ride 5 Surface: rail trail/dirt 2 track 35.7 miles 12.4 average speed
Overall Average Speed: 11.56 mph
Here is a list of my last 10 rides on the Schwalbe Stelvio 1.1" 100psi high speed tires:
40.0 miles 15.7 average speed
12.0 miles 15.4 average speed
27.0 miles 14.6 average speed
16.6 miles 13.6 average speed
25.6 miles 13.8 average speed
29.7 miles 13.1 average speed
14.2 miles 12.2 average speed
34.3 miles 14.3 average speed
40.2 miles 13.4 average speed
Overall Average Speed: 14.26 mph
11.56 versus 14.26 mph is quite a difference! To be fair it has to be considered that two of the five rides on the Comets included portions of off road riding but the data also seems to indicate that the HP Velotechnik goes about as fast on road as it does off.
Ultimately I will probably go back to a narrow high speed tire simply because I like to go faster. However I have really enjoyed the few rides I have logged so far. The fatter front tire handles great and with the pressure down a bit the ride is very plush. In it's stock configuration with fat tires the HP Velotechnik Street Machine is a versatile bike ready for adventure and exploration.
|Motobecane Le Champion Road Bike|
Just for the sake of comparison following are my last five rides on the Motobecane road bike. I am definitely the fastest when riding this bike but of course that's it's sole purpose. All day comfort takes a back seat.
24.1 miles 15.0 average speed
20.1 miles 17.2 average speed
22.6 miles 15.3 average speed
23.8 miles 16.0 average speed
23.6 miles 15.5 average speed
Last weekend I got down to the Kokosing Gap Trail starting from Mt. Vernon, Ohio and the connecting five mile packed clay Mohican Valley Trail. Interestingly on this 35.7 mile ride with 10 miles being dirt I still managed to post my highest average speed yet on the Comets.
Normally this time of year the trails are still pretty moist but it's been dryer than usual and the trail was even dusty in places. Ruts from Amish buggies and bicycle tires were dried into the surface which when above 10 mph did create a bit of squirreliness in the front end of the recumbent but that's common with any two wheeler. Keep in mind on the HP the front wheel is directly under my thighs and completely out of sight. All the feedback from the front wheel is tactile in nature through the handlebars. It's a strange experience but I got used to it fairly quick. Similar to most styles of riding the key is a light grip on the bars and let the wheel self correct on it's own.
I forgot my camera but I did use my cell phone for a quick shot of the Mohican Valley Trail. This is one of my favorite places to ride and I documented the route in one of my first blog posts here a couple years ago.
|Luckily the road apples were all flat and dry!|