One Off-Road Handcycle
The One-Off handcycle is an Off-Road vehicle for people with Paraplegia. It is made by Mike Augspurger in Massachusetts.
You can ride the One-Off on a two-lane country road. I've even seen Mike ride it on two wheels. But, be careful. You're so low to the ground, you're almost invisible. Cars just can't see it. A handcycle is a stealth vehicle.
Off-road, the One-Off is a blast. It is geared lower than any other bike I've ridden. I tell people that it would climb a telephone pole if you can keep enough traction. That is not far from the truth.
It's an odd looking bike. Two wheels in front and one in back. The front wheels turn, while the back wheel is fixed.
It has three disc brakes and a 9-cassette (9 gears) on the back wheel. You can choose different types of back wheel. The one I have is medium wide and knobby with a smooth center for road riding.
In addition to the 9-cassette, there are TWO mountain drives which multiply the range of the gears four times giving the One-Off a total of 32 totally usable gears. The gear range is wider than any bike I know of. Push the little silver button on the side of the crank and your 9-gears double to 18.
Push the button that hides between your knees, (the other mountain drive) and it doubles the gear ratio again from 18 to 32.
Your bum rests on that upside-down heart shaped pad, your knees and lower legs rest in those long padded slots, and your chest rests on that funny looking pad in front of the seat.
The front pad is used to steer when you have both hands on the cranks. If you roll the pad to the right, you turn right, roll it to the left, and you turn left.
It climbs the 26 degree slope which is my back yard with ease. When I ride parallel to a very steep hill, I sometimes accidentally roll over sideways, but since I ride with the seat belt on, I stay attached to the bike and continue rolling over and back to an upright position. It freaks people out.
Going downhill (fast) I prefer to hold onto the handlebars. They also control the steering.
Otherwise I use the cranks. Sometimes I crank with one hand and steer with the other hand on the handlebar.
The One-Off has made many record climbs including Mount Fujiyama in Japan. Some people are just incredible athletes, even with a spinal cord injury.
Me, I just like getting out in the country. It gives me a lot of freedom that I wouldn't have otherwise.