By Mike Eliasohn
Turnout at the annual Michigan Recumbent Rally - West in Kalamazoo on Saturday, Sept. 10, was disappointing.
Most of the people who came didn't bring recumbents to show and ride, rather they came hoping to ride a laid-back bike or trike, but choices were few.
The only three-wheelers there (both for sale) were a TerraTrike Rambler and a folding TerraTrike Traveler, brought by Gabe Lagina of Pedal Bicycles in Portage and downtown Kalamazoo.
Rally organizer Paul Pancella brought three two-wheelers. There were, if my memory is correct, five other two-wheelers there, but four of those were there for only part of the day.
Rain may have kept people away, however, notices of the rally on the Wolverbents and recumbents.com site and seven area Craigslists all stated that in case of rain, the event would take place inside the parking structure next to the Western Michigan University College of Engineering building on the Parkview Campus. That's where we were and we were dry.
Normally the rally uses the College of Engineering parking lot.
Dave Wright (above) of Battle Creek brought the only non-manufactured bikes, two homebuilts. He didn't build either one, having bought them from the builders, but did make some fixes, though more work is needed.
The long wheelbase (approximately 71 in.) was built from plans and is quite similar to an Easy Racer or similar design. The frame of the short wheelbase (approximately 41 in.) looks like it might have been manufactured – the welding is neat and rear dropouts are thick – but the rest looks homemade.
Both are for sale. Dave is asking $350 for the LWB and $250 for the SWB. You can e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.