Asia, biking, Earth, Michael Turton, recumbent, Taiwan

Pig Red – Inaugural Ride

Last Friday evening, I picked up my new Performer Toscana USS 26″ recumbent bicycle, (this has 26″ wheels front and back). It’s a beast… now dubbed Pig Red.

About 18 months ago, my hip nerve and lower back issues got bad enough, that I could barely cycle 100 meters. While working in Germany, I was able to build myself back up to a 70-120 kilometer ride every couple of weeks while cycle commuting 4 kilometers each way.

That’s a far cry from my near daily 20 to 50 kilometer wakeup and weekend 200-300 kilometer long ride before the pain let in.

In coming back to Taiwan, I noticed that I was starting to get nerve issues in my hands while riding and I still needed a week between long rides.

I love to ride and not being able to was starting to drive me nuts. So I started to look for alternatives. A recumbent was one of them and after test riding, despite the shakiness, I ordered Pig Red.

Pig Red is a metallic red, 26″ wheel touring recumbent with SRAM components and Avid disk brakes. It rolls along just fine. Climbing isn’t so bad either.

Big brother Michael Turton took photos during our weekend ride from Wufeng outside of Taichung to home in Kaohsiung.

Overall the recumbent is well built and I enjoy riding it. However, there’s some issues that need to be overcome. I’ll be working with Performer to get them sorted out before my two-week Malaysia cycling trip in February.

Wufeng-Kaohsiung Bike Route

Issues Recap

  • Bottle holder pulled out at 50km – Still trying to figure out what to do…
  • No kickstand – Supplier now under patent issues
  • Dangerous flag placement – Removed flag
  • Broken rear fender mount – Move mount point
  • Bad rear rack placement, no room to lower seat angle – Pulled rack back slightly
  • Crooked seat or rack installation – Rack was crooked
  • Rear fender mount doesn’t fit into wheel well – Moved mounting bracket to seat stay mount
  • Steering tube rubbing paint off – Added black tape-like protectors
  • Neck brace holes and velcro pads misaligned – Not a comfort or stability issue
  • Seat padding not long enough – One size only seat pad, seems to shrink under 88 kg
  • Seat padding doesn’t overcome neck brace edging leading to shoulder soreness – Shortened neck brace bracket
  • Cable stretching like crazy – Prior to 300 kilometers, seemed like I was adjusting something every 20 kilometers
  • Brake mounted bell quit working properly at 100 kilometers – Removed original bell, put on Cateye bell

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Michael Cannon

Hello, I'm Michael Cannon, Peichi's smiling man, Drusus' baba, an adventurous water-rat, Axelerant's chief operating officer, photographer, poet, road cyclist, WWOOF'er, and world traveler. My resume.

  • Carolyn

    Is the bike even safe to be riding? Hopefully the company corrects the issues fast.

    • The bike is safe to ride. It’s just that many issues came up on the first ride than the normal over the course of a season. I know that the factory normally ships the bikes out to shops to build, but this was picked up locally. As such, I figured Performer should get some first hand feedback to prevent these issues with future buyers.