What I Learned from Two Catrike 700s
As I prepare to get my "Red" Catrike 700 ready for sale, I can say that I've learned a lot from having two Catrike 700s. The "Black" 700 is my light and fast ride and the "Red" was set up for casual cruising and possible touring.
This is what I learned:
1 - I don't need two 700s. Everything I can do with two 700s I can do with only one.
2 - With a little bit of planning and hardware selection I can change the setup on one 700 within minutes and be ready to ride with different configurations just about anytime at any place.
3 - Going with a wider tire on the rear wheel has a more positive effect on comfort with less loss in speed then going wider on the front wheels. Also going wider on the rear tire has minimal to no effect on handling where going wider on the front tires definitely effects handling.
4 - I do not like Schwalbe Marathon Plus tires, I do not. They are heavy, slow and a bear to put on and take off. To be able to easily change the configuration on my 700 a tire is required that is easy to remove and replace. I would rather have an occasional flat (only two this year) then mess around with these energy absorbing monsters.
5 - Having two wheelsets is a luxury more then a necessity. But it allows me to have a super light wheelset option (the American Classic Aero) that would otherwise not be suited for larger tires and loads. It is also nice to be able to have two wheelsets ready to go with my most used tires already installed, the Schwalbe One 23/622 and the Schwalbe Kojak 35/622.
6 - With good tire selection (I like folded bead tires for ease of installation, lightness and storage) tires are easy to change. It's much easier to change tires then to have to maintain a second trike. With the tires I use it takes less then 8 minutes to change a tire and have it back on the trike.
7 - As mentioned in a previous post, adding a rack and panniers takes less then 7 minutes.
8 - If I decide to go with fenders (which I usually don't like) it takes no more then 10 minutes to set up fenders on all three wheels.
My fastest configuration for is the 28/622-American Classic wheelset on the rear with 23/406s up front and minimal carry alongs.
At the other extreme is a configuration with a 40/622 Schwalbe Marathon Racer/DT Swiss wheelset on the rear and 40/402 Schwalbe Trekkers up front and a rear rack with panniers. I hope to try this combination out on maintained gravel and dirt trails in the future.
In between these two extremes the best compromise between speed and comfort is the 35/622 Schwalbe Kojak/DT Swiss wheelset on the rear with 23/406 Schwalbe Ones on the front.
REAR Wheelsets and tires
American Classic Aero rim and hub wheelset
Schwalbe One 28/622
DT Swiss rim and hub wheelset
with tire options;
Schwalbe Kojak 35/622
Schwalbe Marathon Racer 35/622
Schwalbe Marathon Racer 40/622
FRONT Wheelset and tires
Stock Catrike Velocity Rim and Chris King hubs
with tire options;
Schwalbe One 23/406
Schwalbe Kojak 35/406
Schwalbe Tryker 40/406
Tubus Logo Evo
By utilizing my two complete wheelsets, with tires already installed, I can go from light and fast to loaded in less then 7 minutes.