recumbent tricycle, or trike, is a high specification, top quality
machine primarily designed for comfortable long-distance touring and
fast, enjoyable day rides. Although it could be easily stripped
down into a lightweight and competitive racing machine, the addition
of a simply attached trailer quickly converts it into a work-horse for
moving heavy goods, recycling trips to the local council tip or for
shopping for bulky items.
early recumbent trikes, makers’ brochures, several years’
membership and reading the newsletters of the British Human Powered
Vehicles Club and their excellent ‘So you want to build an HPV’
booklet, scouring the archives of the IHPVA trikes list, and many,
many hours of researching the internet, it became obvious that the
only way to make a new (ideal?) trike was to take as many good points
of existing designs as possible, add all our own improvements and
requirements, and proceed.
many considerations such as, should the trike be able to be ridden
through a standard door? Steering
to be direct or indirect, joystick or handlebar, or even side levers? Three wheels the same size and
if so, what? Should the
seat be moulded or suspended mesh?
What type of gearing? Fixed
or adjustable seat back angle? A
one-piece chassis or maybe two or more parts? Steel or aluminium
construction? If steel, what kind
of joints - brazed, welded? If aluminium, what sort of gussets -
web, tube or saddle? Rim, disc or drum brakes? Seat height? Wheel suspension? To fit
what size of rider? And
so on . . .
There was no problem deciding
about the need for mudguards and a luggage rack - they were
up all the options, making hundreds of CAD drawings, constructing
several prototype and pre-production Rollers, it was decided that adjustability, comfort, quality and safety were the most important factors. Therefore
the final, production version Rollers would have:
comfortable seat with adjustable head/neck rest, wide enough to accommodate
the largest rider.
suspended seat effectively and practically replaces the need for wheel
suspension in almost all circumstances, without the weight penalty.
The low seat height ensures plenty of cornering stability and inspires
confidence. For most
riders an adjustable mesh seat is also the most comfortable,
especially in hot weather. The
seat is quickly detachable (just two bolts) and does not form part of
the main chassis frame. Adjustable
head/neck rests, a lumbar cushion and padded armrests complete the
(b) Intuitive handlebar
steering with adjustable rake, width, and ratio.
handlebars won the argument, despite the need to meet the conflicting
requirements of the wide seat, a reasonably small turning circle and a
practical front wheel track dimension.
Handlebars also have plenty of room for brake levers, twist
grip gear changers, padded hand rests and mountings for rear-view
mirrors – and there’s no learning curve. The steering ratio
(the amount of movement the handlebars need to turn the front wheels
lock to lock) is also adjustable.
Reliable, long-life, all-weather front brakes.
layout enables the use of very short cables that won't collect water
and freeze up in cold weather and levers and controls that are mounted
the ‘right’ way round. With the main brakes on the front wheels
and the low centre of gravity, the braking is particularly
effective. Although all types of brake were evaluated,
drum brakes were found to be the best all-round choice. They are
well known for their efficiency and longevity, require very little
maintenance, and can be trusted to bring the trike to a safe stop
under all conditions. There are many instances of drum brakes
still operating smoothly and with their shoes showing hardly any signs
after decades of hard use - virtually 'fit and forget.'
(d) A hub gear option with
twist grip operation.
benefits are the ability to change gears whilst stationary, in traffic
or part way up a hill, and the provision of a wide range of gear
ratios. With the Rohloff
14 gear Speedhub the owner has the added advantage of very low
maintenance as all the gears run in a sealed internal oil bath. The
SRAM DualDrive option combines the efficiency and simplicity of the
derailleur gear, a wide range and the convenience of stationary gear
changing by the flick of a thumb lever.
(e) An adjustable seatback –
which can fold down forward.
As most new trike riders may have no idea what
seatback angle will suit them best it was felt important to be able to
adjust it over a wide range, easily and quickly - a fixed angle was
never considered an option. Many riders start out with the seatback in a
fairly upright position and with experience, and as confidence grows,
they gradually lower it until it is close to its 30 degree
position. The low overall height when the seatback is folded
forward enables the Roller to be stored under a table or carried in
the rear of a small estate car. Also, as at least
one owner has discovered, it makes it possible to get the Roller onto
various trains in the UK. The raised
seatback makes it very easy to steer the trike when it has to be
pushed through a pedestrian-only shopping precinct.
(f) A separate rear wheel
traffic lights, especially when on a gradient. Stops an
unattended trike running away in a breeze and assists some riders in
getting into and out of the low seat.
Also makes dozing off in comfort under a shady tree feel more secure.
(g) A chassis that can be split into two main parts and is adjustable
The Roller can
easily be transported in the back of an average family estate car or
broken down into a few large pieces for shipment overseas.
Economic replacement of major parts is also possible in the event of
crash damage. Both the
forward boom and the seat position are fully adjustable making it easy
to accommodate almost any size of adult or large child rider.
(h) Only the best components fitted.
Because of the
amount of time, cost and effort that goes into producing a Roller it
was considered that only the very best components would
do. It was felt a false economy to make a machine fitted
with cheaper components with the view that they can always be upgraded
with better parts when they wear out. Why not start out with the
best available parts and enjoy the dual benefits of longer wear and
better performance right from the beginning?
considered important to choose components that incorporated aluminium
alloy or stainless fittings, etc.,
wherever possible. This usually means selecting
well-known and respected ‘high end’ items for the cycle components
and careful selection of respected brands for the engineering parts. Therefore, all fasteners are
metric and of stainless steel, ball-bearing races are sealed, steering
system ball joints have phosphor-bronze low-maintenance
bearings. All the components that make up a Roller are
well-engineered, long-lasting and more than capable of doing the job
asked of them.
We believe in
the old adage of "Build up to quality, not down to
(i) The chassis constructed of
chassis helps to keep the overall weight low. Because the
material is relatively light, large diameter tubing with added extra
stiffening can be used without any significant weight penalty.
The resultant reduced flexing means more of the rider’s effort finds
its way to the rear wheel, and hence, to the road. The grades of aluminium alloy
chosen for the Roller are particularly corrosion-resistant, and with
the addition of a chromate layer prior to powder coating, even greater
protection is provided.
As you will see
from the 'Specifications and Prices' page, there isn't a list of
optional extras for the Roller - because none are
required. We've steered away from the 'shopping basket'
approach because we found it embarrassing to quote a price and then
have to add the cost of 'optional extras' which are really essentials
that everyone needs.
If there are any
items in the specification that a customer does not require, for any
reason, the price will be reduced an appropriate amount.
Changes to the
general specification to meet a customer's needs can be provided as
long as the overall quality is not compromised. It is
expected Rollers produced in, say, five years' time will look
essentially the same as they do today.
When you place an
order for a Roller a deposit of about 25% of the price is
requested. At present, the aim is to have your new machine ready
for collection within seven weeks of accepting your deposit.
This period may vary slightly depending on seasonal demand - most
orders seem to come in late Spring!
Placing an order
for a Redmount Roller is simple - you only have two significant
decisions to make; the chassis colour and the type of gearing -
everything else you are likely to need is included in the
specification and the price.
Because we know
that circumstances can sometimes change even in the relatively short
time between placing an order and taking delivery, we will return your
deposit (less any irrecoverable expenses) if, for any reason, you are
unable to complete the purchase of your Roller.
The Roller chassis
is carefully designed, strongly built, and almost certainly, very long
lasting. The chosen components are amongst the best
guarantee to replace or repair, free of charge, any part of the
chassis that fails, in normal use, from material or manufacturing
defects, within the first five years.
We also guarantee
to replace or repair, free of charge, any component (apart from tyres,
tubes, chains and pulleys) that fails, in normal use, from material or
manufacturing defects, within the first two years.
Few cyclists have
ever ridden a recumbent cycle, let alone a recumbent trike. Most
first-timers find the experience very interesting and enjoyable,
quickly acquiring the skills to ride the machine with complete
confidence. Recumbent bicycles are well-known for being
difficult to balance and most require considerable experience to
achieve complete confidence in all situations. Trikes, in contrast,
are mainly intuitive and can be mastered by almost anyone within a few
minutes' riding time. Some enthusiasts even make the immediate
decision to own one after only their first ride.
Trikes are still
quite rare and it is difficult for a prospective owner to try out the
various makes of machine. Few cycle shops have any contact with
recumbent machines and therefore, are unable to offer any useful
assistance towards making a decision. Many trike makers deal
directly with their customers and consequently purchasing decisions
are often based on either visits to manufacturers, magazine reviews, a
short ride at a cycle rally or maybe a recommendation from an existing
There is no better
way to make your purchasing decision than to take demonstration rides
on as many trikes as possible. We welcome visitors and will
accompany you for a demonstration ride in and around King's Lynn
(Sustrans National Route 1 passes through the town) at any reasonable
time. Weekends are particularly favourable but we can usually
make time any day for a ride out and about. Please give us some
notice (preferably an hour or two) if you intend to travel any
distance to see us.
Last checked: 24 November 2007