Stratus Recumbent Bicycle
The classic long wheelbase Stratus is the standard for touring recumbents
as is the Easy Racers Tour Easy. Strats have been crossing this country
since 1979, they are great for fitness riding, day trips and fast century
rides too. Anywhere there is an open road a Stratus will feel right at home.
Like most LWB bikes a Stratus may not be the bike of choice for more
urban-congestion type riding. As with all LWB bikes tight maneuvering and
"U" turns are learned skills. It has more "tiller" effect than the Tour
Easy but not an objectionable amount, in my opinion. Pre '98 the Stratus had
more "tiller", too much for me. The 26" rear wheel on a Stratus can
accommodate a wider tire than the 700c rear on a Tour Easy, a
consideration for large riders, lots of luggage or riding on dirt roads.
The wider 26" rear wheel provides a smoother ride and allows a huge
selection of tires. Its large 26” diameter allows the use of standard
Shimano chainrings, which improve the front shifting. Custom high-speed
gearing is easier with the 26” wheel than with a 20” rear wheel like some
recumbents. To figure gearing, the Status’s stock "26 inch" Primo is
~24+1/2" diameter. Even on a Stratus the Rad-Lock seat clamp allows
the great RANS seat to be reclined as much as on the other RANS bikes.
For riders over ~6'2" there is the XL 40" frame. Riders who want to put
more of their weight on the front wheel (i.e. self-contained camping
tourists, heavy riders over ~5'10") may also want to consider the XL.
The XL size costs the same as the regular size. I personally don't think
an LWB bent like the Stratus needs a front V-brake, it makes it to easy
to lock up the front wheel, a potentially dangerous occurrence.