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2013 Polar Cycle

2013 Polar Cycle


2013 - Polar Cycle

This is Maria Leijerstam's Polar Cycle. It's a custom-built recumbent trike. It was made by Inspired Cycle Engineering (ICE). Maria came up with the design and specs and ICE made it happen.

In 2013 Maria Leijerstam became the first person to cycle to the South Pole from the edge of the continent. In December 2023, Maria Leijerstam repeated her trip to the South Pole.

Here's Maria Leijerstam's words on her 2013 Ploar Cycle: "The polar cycle was conceptualised by me and I drew up a user spec after lots of trails with normal 2 wheeled bikes on snow and ice.. It was then handed to Inspired Cycle Engineering who made it all in Falmouth in the UK. We went through a year of trail and testing and made multiple changes until we developed what is now the Polar Cycle. This was a name I created. ICE now have their version of it called the Full Fat, which is in full production selling 10-20 of them a month, mainly in the US and Canada. We have a special edition version of the FullFat coming out this year to celebrate my 10yrs of reaching the South Pole on it. It comes with my signature on it as well as a signed copy of my book and a few other things. It comes either as an electric or manual version. I still have the polar cycle but don’t ride it anymore as it’s too precious. I take it to talks and allow children to sit on it in schools. One day I will place it in a polar museum or a museum of British History."

Here are the specs on Maria Leijerstam's Polar Cycle

27 gears
22-32-44 rotor Oval chainrings (sprockets) at the front.
Oval Chainrings are very good for hill climbing and ultra-distance cycling.
2:1 step down mid-drive to effectively half the gear ratio. Making the lowest gear twice as easy as a standard fat bike. Custom made by ICE.
9-speed 12-36 cassette sprockets on the rear, from a standard MTB. 9 speed is tough as old boots and time-proven to be reliable.
Bar end gear shifters, as they can be operated wearing big gloves.
YBN Heavy duty chain (3 chains joined end to end)
Speed range while pedaling at a comfortable 60-75rpm was expected to be from 2 to 12mph.

Hope FatSno hubs (made in Britain), Hope made a special “super tough” rear hub, as it was going to carry such a big load and have to cope with the forces generated by the extremely low gearing, easy for the rider but hard on the hub.
Surley Clown shoe, 100mm wide rims
Surley Lou 4.8” tyre on the rear, The biggest gnarliest available at the time with ice studs added for traction.
Surley Big Fat Larry tyres on the front, the biggest comfiest and best steering tyre available.
These wheels were hand-built at ICE.

Standard MTB disc brakes, Cable-operated not hydraulic.

Hand-built by ICE from 4130 Cro-Mo aircraft Steel for total reliability in extreme environments.

Standard ICE seat with added Love Handles to keep Maria in place over uneven ground.

Custom built by ICE to accommodate Maria’s big boots

A one off design by ICE to carry up to 80kg.

Click here for Maria's website

Click here for Maria's Facebook page

Click here to order her book on Amazon.com

Here are the details on her bicycle used in 2023 to cycle to the South Pole Inn in Ireland

Click here for Harry Kraemer's newsletter post and interview with Maria

Tags: PolarCycle
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Detailed Description
Maria Leijerstam's Polar Cycle

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