TerraTrike Rambler Posted on November 8, 2015
The TerraTrike Rambler is being refined even further for 2016. The Rambler had a big change in 2015. The most noticeable is removal of the frame tube from the main tube to the Kingpin. This is really a very nice improvement over the 2014 Ramble and current Rover. The new frame design allows the rider to get closer to the seat before they sit down, which is easier. With the tube being removed, it also makes it easier to get off of the trike because you can get your feet more underneath you. So, for the 2016 refinement, TerraTrike will be going away from the two bushings used on the Kingpin and replacing the bushings with a lower bearing and a delrine upper bushing. We got invited to attend the TerraTrike open house for their trike dealers. The event is very well run and I can’t say enough good things on how the the TerraTrike’s team treats their dealers. We got to see all the new 2016 models and got to ride all the new models as well. I was the the most impressed by the new Rover with the 24 inch wheels all the way around. I was skeptical at first and thought the 24 inch wheel would ride only a little bit smoother. I also thought the larger front wheels would hamper the turning of the trike. I have to say, I was wrong. I was very impressed with the improved ride from the 24 inch wheels. I was also surprised that I also had no issue with turning ability of the trike.
Frame: The frame on the Rambler is a non folding Chro-moly steel, TIG welded together and come with a 300 lbs capacity. The Rambler frame is a full five pounds lighter than the Rover. Other big upgrade is the round tubing over the square on the Rover. The Rambler boom is made out of aluminum and is independently adjustable from the frame. The welding on the frame was precise and consistent with no gaps or inconsistency.
Paint: Something about the paint on the Rambler just looks better than the Rover. I am sure both trikes come down the same assembly line, but the paint just looks better to me on the Rambler. Possibly, it is just the round tubing over the square on the Rover or possibly it is just the cool looking orange color. The paint was nice on the Rambler, it was applied evenly and consistently, with no thin spots or runs.
Drive Train: The Rambler comes three ways. First, is the eight speed internal hub where all the gears are inside the hub of the rear wheel. Second, is called the Rambler Base which is a 24 speed drivertrain made by a Taiwan manufacture called Microshift. Even though you may not have heard of Microshift, they have been building quality bicycle drivetrains for quite a while. The Microshift system is just a better value and higher quality than the SRAM or Shimano at the same price. Third, is the Rambler GT which is a 27 speed drivetrain and uses a mixture of higher quality parts from a number of different brands.
Brakes: The brakes are ProMax mechanical disc brakes, which does a fine job stopping the trike on the Rambler eight speed and Base models. If you move up to the Rambler GT, you get a higher performance braking system, the Avid BB7. The Avid BB7 brakes are my favorite non hydraulic disc brake. They just work so well, are very easy to adjust and you can get replacement brake pads at just about any bike shop. The brake levers have a parking lock where there is a button on the brake lever that you can push and lock the brakes in the on position.
Seat: The seat on the Rambler is a simple nylon with straps that hold it securely to the seat frame. The seat fabric has been upgraded over the Rover. It is much more breathable and comfortable. The Rambler seat height is 15 ½ inches, which makes it one of the highest seats on the market and it can be adjusted from 40 to 70 degrees. The seat slides easily along the main tube of the frame for people with different leg lengths. Being able to adjust the seat independent from the boom is a nice feature. The rider now has the ability to position themselves closer or farther away from the handlebars if they choose.
Ride: The Rambler ride is a nice improvement over the Rover. The most noticeable difference was the Ramble is simply smoother. It just soaks up the bumps better than the Rover. Other things we like are the small turning circle, the Rambler is very nimble and agile. The Rambler also has and upright seating position like the Rover. For 2016 the steering has been improved by adding a bottom bearing to the Kingpin and a delrin bushing to the top. This made the steering much lighter that the two bushing set up on the 2015 models and older.
Accessories: Terratrike is one of the best companies when it comes to accessories. Terratrike will be including their new Heal Sling on all trikes moving forward in 2016. One of the worst things that can happen while riding your trike is to have your foot slip off the pedal which can cause an accident. In our opinion, just about everyone should be riding with clipless pedals and cycling shoes. Clipless pedals and shoes are safer and simply more comfortable than wearing your standard street shoes. For the people who can not be talked into the clipless pedals and shoes, there is the new Heal Sling. Terratrike also had a long list of well made accessories like racks, neck rest, mudguards, seat pads and mounts for lights and computers.
In Conclusions: The Rambler is a nice step up from the Rover. Even though the seating position is similar, you get a trike that is about eight pounds lighter. The Rambler has the ability to go faster and is more comfortable than its little brother, the Rover.
Pros: Easy to get on and off of, breathable seat mesh, and 8, 24 or 27 speed drivetrain to choose from.
Cons: Direct steering vs Indirect steering. I personally prefer the Indirect steering, but both will get you around the corner and to your destination. I really did not have any cons with the Rambler, about the only thing I could say was possibly pricing on the Rambler GT. The pricing on the Rambler GT just did not scream buy me, like some other trikes.
Best place to buy: Your local Terratrike Dealer or www.industrialbicycles.com