My slow slide towards bike snobbery got a great slap in the face last week. I came across a wonderful cheap bike…at Walmart! OK, so cheap bikes at Wally World are nothing new, but that’s why this was such a surprise, this is not your everyday cheap bike. It’s a Worksman folding adult tricycle. (AKA Portotrike)
First of all, if you’re not familiar with the Worksman brand it’s because they are not usually associated with anything that could be considered cheap. We’re talking about a made in America, Brooklyn NY actually, quality machine.
I should mention that part of my excitement is finding this bike takes a major bite out of my planning for retirement years anxiety. Given my family history there will come a point where I can no longer drive a car, and will probably no longer keep a two-wheel bike upright. So I’m rather confident there is a three-wheeler in my future. The problem is they are either battleship anchors on wheels or bizarre contraptions that Carrot Top would be ashamed to ride. Therefor coming across a nice-looking, light three-wheeler that I wouldn’t mind riding warms the cockles of my aging heart.
Riding it up and down the sports equipment aisles I found it very comfortable. It’s just a single speed but by the time I need a bike like this I doubt that speed will be a major consideration. Unlike many three-wheelers on the cheaper scale it turns well. The pedals drive both wheels but it has some kind of differential so the rear wheels will spin at different speeds when cornering.
It’s a folding bike which is a nice perk. It doesn’t fold down nearly as small as a two-wheeled folder but I measured it and will fit in the back of my Scion XB.
The only thing that I didn’t like was the braking. There are two brake handles. One activates the caliper brake on the front wheel, the other activates a drum brake on the front wheel. Yes, both brakes are on the front wheel. While it stopped on a dime on the flat store floor this arrangement is a potential problem for the hills of San Francisco. If you were going downhill too fast and turned hard while braking hard you’d be in for a bit of a tumble. So if you but this bike you shouldn’t do that.
So now I know what bike I’m going to buy when I retire. All I need to do now is win the lottery.