Custom-built hub-geared FWD cruiser
Another customer special from the LaidBack showroom – I grabbed a few photos of this awesome RaptoBike Midracer in hub-geared/open cockpit configuration before it went out.
The clean lines of the RaptoBike lowracer have clearly been inherited by its taller brother, but in this case the Midracer is even cleaner, with no boom to break up the bike’s outline (the frame adjusts by lengthening and shortening at the mid-section join).
This particular frame also has no front derailleur post, a bit of an obstacle for general use but with the Alfine 11 hub gear, unnecessary.
The larger idlers on this FWD help mitigate the high angle of deflection. Unfortunately, it also contributes to the phenomenon known as ‘Raptobite’, if you aren’t careful!
This bike was fitted with a carbon seat, and behind a small rack cunningly mounted to the v-brake posts as well as the rack mounts: keeping a rack top bag or standard pannier in the dirty air behind the rider:
I’ve written elsewhere that I’m not a fan of the limited steering clearance of open cockpit (OC) bars, which are rarely seen here. Of course there are some advantages and this was what the owner requested. If I recall correctly, it’s the same OC bar that you’d find on a Nazca bike too:
The different perspectives make this rollover less useful than usual, but you can hopefully see the Raptobike’s low seat height (21″/53cm) despite the big wheels – it’s inches lower than the 26″ Seiran and going on for 6″ lower than a 700C Bacchetta (depending on fit; YMMV):
Roll over for a comparison between the Raptobike Midracer and the Seiran 26
The Alfine 11 with chain tensioner. A decent amount of spare chain is vital on all Raptobikes as turning the handlebars increases the distance between the cassette and BB: you only need a few links, but without them you wouldn’t be able to turn!
The bike was equipped with Avid BB7 disc brakes, which are practically an industry standard: powerful and easy to adjust.
Overall, a nice, clean, and very different bike – ready for fast day rides with some luggage capacity. May it see many sunny miles!
I have a detailed write-up of the ‘normal’ Raptobike Midracer, click here!
- My main Laid-Back reviews page – all recumbents on one page