608, 2018


By |August 6th, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Proper Tire Inflation

If you are a novice cyclist please familiarize yourself with the following terms and equipment:

  1. PSI – This is a measure of pressure (Pound-force per Square Inch) and each tire has a PSI range stated on its sidewall, for example “55-85 PSI”. A flashlight can be helpful when searching for and reading these numbers.   As you gain riding experience you will get a sense of your preferred pressure within the stated range.
  2. Inner Tube Valve – the tube inside your trike’s tire will have either a Shraeder Valve (looks like a car tire’s valve) or a Presta Valve (narrower and longer).
  3. Pump – There are several options for inflating your tires: a floor pump is handy to keep at home, a hand pump to keep with you on the road, or an air compressor to use with care.  Many pumps have pressure gauges to measure your psi.  Most pumps can accommodate either Presta or Schrader. You can also purchase a Presta to Schrader adapter at most bike stores.

Please check your tire inflation regularly.  All tubes will lose air over time, and riding on under-inflated tires is unsafe, lessens your enjoyment of the ride, and damages equipment. 

Tire Wear

As you accumulate miles, wear should appear evenly across the middle of each tire. Off-center wear or “scrubbing” may indicate wheel misalignment and you’ll want to bring your trike in for mechanic examination (usually, though, you’ll notice the trike “pulling” to one side long before you see wear).

Replace tires when

  • Tread grooves are no longer visible at the middle of the tire
  • Sidewall “thread weaves” are visible
  • Sidewall or tread bulges when properly-inflated

And it’s worth repeating, to properly care for your tires, it’s crucial they be correctly inflated for every ride.  Under-inflated tires will break down the sidewall leading to premature failure. Inflation ratings are embossed into the tire sidewall (though you may need a flashlight to read them).  Because all butyl rubber inner tubes have some permeability –allowing air to gradually escape – we recommend filling up at least every couple weeks.

Purchasing Tubes and Tires

When it’s time to replace them, sizing tires and tubes is very-straightforward. Like PSI, tire size is embossed on the sidewall. However, do NOT pay a bit of attention to sizes marked in inches.  The only accurate sizing that matters is the ETRTO number (“European Tyre and Rim Technical Organization, for you geeks).  The ETRTO number is a “two digit dash three digit” number such as “35-406” or “47-559”.  ETRTO is exact whereas “20 inch” is approximate (yes, seriously, there are at least two official “20 inch” tire sizes. If you call a bike store asking if they “have 20 inch tires,” you may get a 20 inch that doesn’t fit!).

Tubes, unlike tires, are sized in ranges –such as “28-406 to 35-406” (meaning it will fit any size 406 tire with a cross-width between 28 and 35 mm). When sizing a tube, choose the smallest one that fits your needs.  So, if your tire is 35-406 and your tube choices are either “28-406 to 35-406” or “35-406 to 40-406”, you’ll want the smaller one.

Changing a Flat

Nobody likes flats!  Fortunately, RPDX has lots of ingenious, easy-to-use tools to help you change them.  We’re happy to show you how to use them.

Tire Choices

Schwalbe is the dominant brand among recumbents by offering more choices in recumbent-specific sizes than any other manufacturer.  Unsurprisingly, then, Schwalbe Racer or Tryker tires come factory-standard from Catrike, HP Velotechnik, AZUB, Greenspeed and virtually every other recumbent bike and trike.

Racers and Trykers are quality, lightweight and low-friction tires good for +/-3000 miles (“+” if you ride like a normal human and “-“ if you ride like me and think it’s fun to lock up a wheel drifting around corners at high speed!).

But, for those with different requirements, Schwalbe offers huge choices in recumbent tires:

  • Puncture-resistant tires have a 5mm band of highly-elastic rubber under the tread layer that captures and imbeds goat head thorns, glass and other debris before it can reach the tube. Schwalbe calls their Marathon Plus tires “flat-less” and, based on our customer experience, they aren’t over-selling.
  • Wider tires are useful for riders who want a softer ride
  • Foldable lightweight tires are easily carried as spares
  • High-Pressure narrow tires have lower rolling resistance -providing higher speed, but a bumpier ride
  • Knobby tires – while the factory-supplied Racers or Trykers are fine for on-road, bike paths, crushed gravel rails-to-trails or even limited mountain triking, some folks need additional traction in wet, mud or rutted gravel roads. Knobby tires give that extra traction.  Designed to run at lower inflation, they give a surprisingly cushy ride.  There are some downsides, though –The “knobs” are louder on pavement and the lower pressure requires more rider energy to turn the cranks.
  • Studded tires are perfect for those who need snow and ice traction

RecumbentPDX keeps the largest inventory of recumbent-specific tires and tubes in the Western United States.  We also have a variety of ingenious tools to help you quickly and safely fix flats.  Come on in to the store and we’re happy to show off everything we have.


2607, 2018

RPDX Hours

By |July 26th, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

Our use of “Appointment” days –in addition to “Open” days- accommodates customers who want to visit us when the shop is quiet.  Reasons can include

  • Specific adaptive needs
  • Inability to come during store open hours
  • A desire for a little less hustle-and-bustle while considering such a significant purchase

Appointment days also give us flexibility to meet vendors, test new equipment and catch-up on builds.  We’ll always try our best to welcome both short-notice appointments and drop-ins –provided we don’t have a previously-scheduled customer or we haven’t ducked out of the store to take the pups on a hike up Mt Tabor.

Summer Hours* (June 1- Sept 1): 

Mon Tues Weds Thurs Fri Sat Sun
Closed By Appt By Appt 11am -4pm 11am -4pm 11am -4pm noon-4pm

Winter Hours*:                   

Mon Tues Weds Thurs Fri Sat Sun
Closed By Appt By Appt 11am -4pm 11am -4pm 11am -4pm By Appt


We’re happy to explain: Google, Facebook and Yelp just don’t get nuance.  To them, we’re either “Open” or “Closed”.  Well, what about those appointment days? If we list as “open”, folks will be disappointed when we’re not. If we list as “closed”, then folks wonder, “what kind of recumbent store is only open four days a week?!” (Yeah! That’d be just crazy, huh?).

We’d like to encourage folks to check our website for hours, so we tried to remove all store hours from the web, to which Google replied, “we will show this location as permanently closed” (not so!).  We then tried showing the store ALWAYS open.  24 hours a day –figuring folks would think, “That can’t be right!” and call us.  That move prompted several phone calls from Google (yes, really. Phone Calls) asking “are you REALLY open 24 hours a day?” followed by a Google-driven “auto-correct”.

We now list our hours on the store address line and we’ve changed our appointment days only to “Open 24 hours”.  So far, Google hasn’t caught on (please don’t tell them).

So, now you know the story!

*Holiday Closures:  July 4th weekend (if the holiday occurs during the weekend)

                                                Thanksgiving and the following Friday/Saturday

                                                Christmas/New Year Holiday – two weeks closed

2607, 2018

Summer 2018: What’s New in the Shop

By |July 26th, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

If you’re planning a visit to RPDX visit, here’s a snapshot of all there is to see:

  • We’ve expanded the number of Catrike demos ready for test riding to 15, including
    • Villager, Trail (folder), 559 (folder), Dumont (folder/suspension), Expedition, Road AR (suspension), Pocket and 700 (redesigned for 2018!)
  • From HP Velotechnik, we have demos of EVERY Scorpion and Gekko model including
    • New 2018 Gekkos, Scorpion FS26, FS20, FX, Scorpion 2, Scorpion Plus 26 and 20
  • From AZUB, the Full Fat is a sight to see (and sit-in!) plus some new T-Tris builds sitting alongside the Tri-Con with Pinion Drive and the (!!!) Ti-Fly.
  • From Greenspeed, their newly-designed square boom as well as the new Magnum XL!
  • Short boom demo trikes –enabling riders 4’11 and up to easily test ride
  • One-hand control (left or right) – Electronic shifting, stand up aids, heel support pedals and single hand control hydraulic brakes enabling those recovering from stroke to easily ride again
  • Pedal-assist demos for Bionx and Shimano STEPS. Nearly a quarter of the trikes leaving the shop now feature pedal-assist electric motors. Test riding lets you know if it’s the right choice for you
  •  We have demos available for test riding with Rohloff Speedhub, Schlumpf Mountain Drive, Pinion Drive Technology and Shimano DI2. No other store in the United States has this much component choice available for you to test ride!

We also have Accessories:

  • DaBrim -Taming the Blazing Sun™
  • Extensive TerraCycle offerings  including their new pendulum pedals, *BRAND NEW*Finer Recliner neck rests (more on this in another post), bottle mounts, side bags and a panopoly of Erector Set-like connectors to attach pretty-much ANYTHING to your recumbent
  • Roadside repair tools from Park Tools and Koolstop;
  • Large colorful attention-getting flags
  • Ventisit-the world’s most comfortable recumbent seat pad!
  • Schwalbe Tires – Fast, comfy, knobby, puncture-resistant- RPDX has ALL the choices.  No recumbent store has a larger selection of Schwalbe tires and tubes
  • Kryptonite Locks and Terratrike Covers to keep your recumbent safe from theft
  • Ortlieb and Arkel Recumbent bags
  • Terratrike Heel Support pedals, cushions, roof-top trike carriers and bottle cage mounts
  • Pumps, horns, lights
  • Hollywood Racks to haul your trike on a trailer hitch

As always, we’ve got a completely line of adaptive components to help overcome any barrier to riding –whether it be surgery, stroke, joint replacement, Ataxia, Parkinson’s or balance issues.  If you have the desire, we’ll do our best to get you safely enjoying the joy of cycling again:

  • Heel Support Pedals -to ensure feet stay comfortably and safely on the pedals
  • Stand Up Assist Arms -to help rider get safely in and out of the seat
  • Lumbar supports and other adaptive cushions -every recumbent rider is unique. We have the pads to make you comfortable
  • Pendulum Pedals  -for riders with limited range of motion, these allow a comfortable, smooth leg stroke
  • Short Cranks -for shorter riders, these ensure a comfortable leg stroke (if you’re 5’2″, you don’t ride the same cranks as somebody 6’2″!)
  • Climbing gears to ensure you can get up the steepest grades

Thank you for following the story of RecumbentPDX, now in our 4th season and excited as always to hear your stories from the road!

2307, 2018

Catrikes on Vancouver Island BC

By |July 23rd, 2018|Blog|0 Comments

RecumbentPDX and Friends took our Catrikes to Canada’s stunning Vancouver Island.  Local customers Douglas and Juliana guided daylong rides along the Lochside and Galloping Goose Trails. On day three, we took the Brentwood Bay across the Saanich Inlet for a hill climb to Cherry Point Winery (Here’s a link to the Video).

2307, 2018

Mark Egeland GM/Co-Owner of Catrike Visits RecumbentPDX

By |July 23rd, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments

RPDX was so lucky to have Catrike’s GM Mark Egeland visit us July 25th. Mark led a group ride down the Springwater Corridor, over the Sellwood Bridge and up (and I mean UP! 700 feet UP!) to the top of Riverview Cemetery.  We rolled back the shop for hot dogs, beer and (!!) CAT CAKE!!!


Catrike GM Mark Egeland Leads RPDX ride

Ron is always our most colorful rider

We returned to the shop for lunch and Cat Cake!


1304, 2017

Tilikum Bridge Ride!

By |April 13th, 2017|Blog|0 Comments

Louie and Becky -our fearless ride leaders- took a trike group over Portland’s beautiful Tilikum Crossing and down the Springwater Corridor. Recumbent trikes are tailor-made for riders of every age and ability. All in high definition!www.recumbentpdx.com