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Mike Burrows video

HPV / Recumbent 8 712

I have mentioned Mike Burrows on the blog a few times before; I even mentioned him in one of my very first posts. He has designed many great recumbent bikes and trikes throughout his career, but I most admire the work he did on uprights like the Lotus bike for Chris Boardman and the first compact frame Giants in the 90s. I haven’t heard much about him lately, but I just saw a link on VeloVision to a video of Mr. Burrows showing off his bikes. Also, bottlemasher has some great photos of the Ratracer V.L.R., one of Burrows latest creations. The photostream is worth checking out. In particular I like the photos, like this one, which show Mr. Burrows piloting the Ratracer.

I would recommend Mike Burrow’s book “Bicycle Design”, published around 2000,to anyone interested in his designs. The book is pretty basic and it is definitely biased toward the author’s strong opinions about bike design, but I still think it is a pretty entertaining read. As a definitive book on the subject of bicycle design, it is definitely NOT a substitute for Whit and Wilson’s “Bicycling Science” or for Archibald Sharp’s classic book, but Mr. Burrow’s book is fun to look through if you are interested in his perspective. I believe his book is out of print at this point, but you can check your local library for a copy if you want to see fun illustrations, furry helmets, nicely shaped carbon frames, and plenty of monoblade forks.

Photo credit: bottlemasher on Flickr

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  1. A F January 8, 2008 at 1:59 pm -  Reply

    Does anybody know about this site ( ) ? I have seen other environmental sites with carbon calculators like yahoo and tree huggers, but I am wondering what the deal with is, is it credible? I saw they also published a list last month of the top ten greenest cities ( ). Does anyone know if this site is better than say WWF site? Fill me in

    I took their carbon foot print test and it was pretty interesting, but they said that I put out 4.5 tons of carbon while another test gave me like 15 tons? I think I trust’s test a little more (because my score is lower). Does anyone know about any other tests?

  2. 54 January 8, 2008 at 4:15 pm -  Reply

    Cool, Burrows’ work had always been nothing short of fantastic….

    Wonder what he is up to now? He designed a bike for Giant once, before the UCI ruling, didn’t he?

  3. Id January 8, 2008 at 7:28 pm -  Reply

    Mike Burrows es Dios!

  4. James January 9, 2008 at 6:02 pm -  Reply

    54, I agree, Burrows work has always been fantastic. He designed several bikes for Giant, but the one you are probably thinking of is the mid nineties composite monocoque MCR. That was a beautiful frame, but the UCI didn’t go for it. At least the UCI did decide to allow compact road frames based on the diamond frame. The compact road bikes that are all over the market today can be traced back to Burrows time at Giant not all that long ago.

  5. Ron January 9, 2008 at 9:39 pm -  Reply

    Nice.. now we have a face for the enigmatic character of Burrows.

  6. bikesgonewild January 10, 2008 at 2:38 pm -  Reply

    …burrows ratracer ‘vlr’ is a great looking, well engineered ‘bent…if you look at all the various bikes on bottlemasher’s site, the ratracer looks to have the lowest center of gravity…

    …love to ride one some day…

  7. Anonymous January 16, 2008 at 12:12 pm -  Reply

    i have both books, mike’s and bike science, and i really like mikes better. mike’s book made me think and BS just made me wonder what the testing would show on new components.

    but that’s just me and it’s great that both books are out there for us.


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