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WisdomWarlord Posted - 10/12/2013 : 16:58:13
I just bought my first, and hopefully last, recumbent. A Sun EZ-3 HD delta trike.
After a short ride home, I'm convinced this is the best $400 I have ever spent.
The previous owner mangled the rear derailleur so I straighten it by hand and adjusted everything, and I'm good. But, that rear derailleur is literally only an inch and a half off the ground. I'm sure I'll mangle it again. I got grass in it riding in a mowed lot. This bike is going to be my daily driver, in lieu of a car, so I can't be eating rear derailleurs.
It has 20" tires.
What can I do, on a very tight budget, to give that derailleur a fighting chance?
11   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
alevand Posted - 02/01/2014 : 10:07:46

Tony Levand
Tom Schneider Posted - 02/01/2014 : 04:54:48
You need something off-road rock hopper vehicles have used, a skid pan, under the derailleur! Then you could bounce over the rocks, etc.
Larger wheels will also help.

Smooth trail rider Tom
WisdomWarlord Posted - 01/31/2014 : 23:00:38
Thanks Mike. I'll look into that derailleur.
Warren, what good is a recumbent of I can't go rock hopping on it? Let's be realistic here! :-D
I need some gravel in my travels!
warren Posted - 01/31/2014 : 13:32:35
The other option of course is just to resist the urge to go cross-country and rock-hopping.
Upright Mike Posted - 01/29/2014 : 14:31:30
If you're running a single chainring, and a wide-range cassette, a option is the Shimano Zee short cage derailleur. I just ordered one, but haven't installed it yet.

It comes in two models, one that shifts from 11-28 cassette, and the other 11-36 cassette (mine). Its not designed to work with double chainrings up front, because that would require a longer cage to take up more chain.
WisdomWarlord Posted - 01/29/2014 : 12:56:26
Sorry for the lag in my participation on this thread. I read the replies and tried the ones that I could. Sadly, none was a complete solution. The derailer hanging down in the middle of the trike, instead of tucked up against the wheel as on a tadpole trike or a bicycle, is the problem. The more I have riden this trike, the more I see it's strengths and weaknesses. Unfortunately for me, my needs and wants and riding style bring out the trikes weaknesses. Then again, that's been true of every trike I've seen. So, I'll have to build what I need.
This trike is serving me well for commuting, so this spring I'll tune it up and sell it to fund the bike I have to build.
Thanks for the suggestions and help
Oldfrt Posted - 10/14/2013 : 16:03:36
You can try to mount a secondary chain tensioner on the front of the trike, that should give you enough chain wrap to go to a short cage derailleur. To save some costs, you may be able to adapt the long cage one you have to use as the secondary tensioner.
Dreamer Posted - 10/13/2013 : 08:03:30
that rear derailleur is literally only an inch and a half off the ground.
I haven't seen the Sun EZ-3 delta trike in person but web pictures showing it with a long cage derailleur in it's down position still appear to have about 3" of clearance. I'm puzzled why the deraileur on your trike is lower.
Three alternate solutions come to mind.
1. Moving the derailleur towards the front of the frame would give more clearance.
2. Changing the rear wheels to 26" (559) would raise the derailleur but might affect handling.
3. Changing the front fork and Wheel to a 26" would also raise the derailleur, though not quite as much. Steering might be affected.
Doing both 2 & 3 would keep the trike in the same position relative to the ground. The larger wheels would raise the center of gravity making the trike more prone to tipping in turns and when riding across side slopes.
davidw Posted - 10/13/2013 : 07:19:13
One easy solution (maybe) i could think of is shorten you chain so the derailleur is pointing more forward instead of down.
But again with a wide range cassette that might not work across all the gears.
Speedbiker Posted - 10/13/2013 : 06:25:05
That long derailleur is probably necessary for the wide range cassette. A tighter cassette would allow a shorter derailleur, but would change your gearing. I don't mean to sound negative, but all the ways I can think to fix your situation are pricey. You should probably learn to live with your present setup. Meanwhile save up for a trike with a tall rear wheel.
davidw Posted - 10/13/2013 : 02:33:08
I think a shorter derailleur is probably your best shot. Most derailleurs come in different varieties of cage length.

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