4 stroke bicylcle engine. way of the future?

paul

Well-Known Member
Dec 23, 2007
5,548
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48
63
Kalamazoo, MI
as most of you probably know they are trying to stop all imports of 2 cycle engines because of polution. even if they do parts will be available. canada has already put into law that no 2 cycle engines can be imported thier. more and more company's are coming out with 4 stroke engines for bicycles and the price is slowly coming down. i forsee lots of improvements on the four stroke engines. if you all remember when they first started converting boat motors to 4 strokes they were huge and bulky. now a 4 stroke boat motor is comparable to an old 2 stroke motor in size and weight. i think we will see the same thing happen with bicycle engines in the near future. i know thatsdax is in the process of developing a really nice 4 stroke rack mount and also a frame mount to follow. its called the titan and looks to be quite the machine
 

MotorbikeMike

Dealer
Dec 29, 2007
477
1
18
Sacramento
Chinese 2-stroke engines

Hi guys, the history of the Chinese bicycle engine in the US started about 10 years ago, I got in about 8 years ago.

There were several unsucessful engines, some were called "cyclone". The first sucessful engine was the "Nantong" factory's offering called by Steve Miller the "SpitFire Bicycle Engine". These were actually imported by Don Grube, and when Steve chose to go direct to the factory, thru his new intemediary in Singapore, Don intruduced the "StarFire" 48 from Nantong. Then came the roundhead 48cc from Shantou, rougher looking, but actually more power, and a cooler older look.

Then other backdoor operations started, with the factories in China breaking the agreements written in Chinese between Don, and themselves which had assured him of exclusive US trade.

Time passes, and kits sell. I had known for at least 3 years that the ban was coming, but did not know why till afterwards.

Japan raises her ugly head in the form of a lobbying effort by the small engine manufacturers, much money is spent, and who knows what else (bribes? "donations"?) we will never know.

Summer of '05 and we know that we are officially dead! The EPA lays down the ban NO CHINESE 2-Strokes to be imported after Dec.31 Midnight!

Therefore ALL chinese 2-stroke bicycle engines not on the beach prior to that date are SMUGGLED! I have some legal engines left, and I know a guy who has about 50 more, but the rest are SMUGGLED!

I am ready for the rest of the country to come into compliance, I did, and it is really unfair that all this SMUGGLING continues.

The Japanese, by the way, cut themselves a sweet deal, as for every "clean" 4-stroke they import, they can import 1 "dirty" 2-stroke.
Pretty sweet deal, eh?

If anyone has any questions, I may know what you would like to know, or maybe some of the "old timers" I know will remember.

Mike
 

Egor

New Member
Jan 30, 2008
714
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Hurricane Utah
Re: way of the future

The best outboard engine available now is the Evinrude V tec, it is a two stroke, and the cleanest running engine to date. The 4 stroke OB are all extremely heavy. It is sad that the only 4 stroke that is desirable is the Whizzer, and now not available in a kit form. The weed whacker converted 4 stroke engines don't fit well and there looks are barley acceptable at best. I still think it could be done to replace the current happy engine to 4stroke configuration. All the drive, crank and ancillary parts could be used, we would only need the cam parts and the castings to accept the rest of the 4 stroke. It would use the barrel with-out the ports, and oil control ring on the piston, 1 compression and 1 oil ring, and a new head with the ports. The best cam would be a OHC outfit, with a small cog belt or chain drive. Driven from just inside the Mag. Have fun, Dave
PS: Has anyone heard about the 4 stroke that takes an oil mix and no crank-case oil? (IE no crank-case).
 

Norman

LORD VADER Moderator
Staff member
Jan 16, 2008
2,605
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38
68
pampa texas
Re: way of the future

Anybody know if the cam in the engine is plastic lobed or metal and if metal what kind I know how to change the lobe profile to extract more power and torque by some junk yard mechanics.
Norman
 

Chainsaw

New Member
Jan 31, 2008
10
0
0
Re: way of the future

PS: Has anyone heard about the 4 stroke that takes an oil mix and no crank-case oil? (IE no crank-case).
I could be wrong but I think that the new Stihl 4 stroke is one of them. It's used in the back pack leaf blowers (and probably their other products) and has some guts! Not sure who else, but chances are the lawn maint./landscapers are going to be the ones who prove whether these engines are reliable. Don't know if the Stihl engines could be converted to bike logic or even if they would be practical, but I'd be interested in finding out.
 

geeksquid

New Member
Feb 14, 2008
114
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Re: way of the future

There are some good 4 stroke kits out there now. I'm referring to the frame mount types, which all use the Hua Sheng chinese engine. If this engine doesn't measure up, the smaller Honda GX engine can be used. If only the dealers were more reputable and made sure the consumer got all the parts they need, it would be great, but that seems to be the biggest problem now. I hardly even considered the 2 stroke. I'm not after the "cool" look. I need reliable transportation and don't want to stand out. I know that's not the case with a lot of people. I didn't know about this kit (link below), but as far as low key profile and a chain drive instead of a roller drive, this kit looks pretty good. It has the very low profile looks of a friction drive but is a chain drive. I just don't know about that "Bridgestone" engine that's on it. Sounds like a case of the Chinese ripping off a well known established name and using it as their own. Installation looks very easy.
Motorized bicycles or bike motors, electric bikes or bicycle engine kits
 

geeksquid

New Member
Feb 14, 2008
114
0
0
Re: way of the future

I could be wrong but I think that the new Stihl 4 stroke is one of them. It's used in the back pack leaf blowers (and probably their other products) and has some guts! Not sure who else, but chances are the lawn maint./landscapers are going to be the ones who prove whether these engines are reliable. Don't know if the Stihl engines could be converted to bike logic or even if they would be practical, but I'd be interested in finding out.
I had heard a long time ago that the small GX Honda 4 strokes could be operated in any position just like a 2 stroke, but wasn't aware of a 4 stroke with no crankcase.
 

geeksquid

New Member
Feb 14, 2008
114
0
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Re: way of the future

Again, I'm not one that's after the cool look or retro look and just want reliable transportation (don't have a car), but the revopower.com front wheel engine, if EVER RELEASED, looks to be a good option. It's a 2 stroke, so obviously there's not a total ban on those and it does meet all Calif. regulations. No telling what the price will be if they ever release it, but it will have to stand the test of regular use to prove if it will be any good or not. I personally don't want to spend $800 for something that's not tested for the long haul.
 

Bikeguy Joe

Godfather of Motorized Bicycles
Jan 8, 2008
11,843
236
63
up north now
Re: way of the future

I doubt the revopower will ever be released....they've hyped it for too long. I also doubt it will ever fly (so to speak) in CA.

For the price of those "Titan" kit's, you'd be better of with a frame mount, or building you own....those are expensive and of unknown quality.
 

geeksquid

New Member
Feb 14, 2008
114
0
0
Re: way of the future

I doubt the revopower will ever be released....they've hyped it for too long. I also doubt it will ever fly (so to speak) in CA.

For the price of those "Titan" kit's, you'd be better of with a frame mount, or building you own....those are expensive and of unknown quality.

Your're right about being expensive and unknown quality but the saying "you get what you pay for" definitely is true with bike engine kits. Seems most of you guys go for the 2 stroke China jobs. They are definitely the cheapest, and not only in price. From what I've read on the forums, they require way too much TLC and upkeep. That's why I'd rather have a 4 stroke. Yes, as I said, the "Bridgestone" engine sounds like a real cheap knockoff and quality is completely unknown. But engines like Robin Subaru, Tanaka and Honda are very well known for quality. If these engines were available on every kit out there, at least as an option, we'd be better off. But these engines just don't look as cool to some. Staton makes high quality kits but most of his are way too offset to one side on the rack mounts for my taste and he doesn't do frame mounts and he's expensive, but again, you always get what you pay for.
 

Bikeguy Joe

Godfather of Motorized Bicycles
Jan 8, 2008
11,843
236
63
up north now
Re: way of the future

Ah yes, but sometimes you get more than you pay for and sometimes you don't get what you pay for too.


These frame mount kits do require a bit of "adjusting" to get them to work nearly flawlessly, but they can be made to do so....I had 500++ miles on two different ones that I sold, and I gave the new owners the rundown on them and they have never called or complained, even though they both got my number and were told to feel free to call about ANYTHING.

As I said 'round here somewhere- They aren't a super powered state of the art kit, but like a model T or an old VW bug, they are made to keep running with minimal maintenance and care....but you have to do that small amount of maintenance and care.

As we all have, feel free to buy an "unknown quantity" and let us know how it works....I know I did when I first got into this hobby.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
Re: way of the future

I'm sorry to disagree. Just in general... you do not always get what you pay for. Lots of dealers, of everything, charge more than other dealers of the exact same product.

I was a wedding photographer for 30 years and 'you get what you pay for' is how a man charging twice what his product was worth would say to try and justify and exorbitant price. Some people believe it and some know better.

If that was the case there would be no Walmart. I can buy a park bike chain there for 7 bucks and a park bike chain at the bike shop for 10 bucks. Was that park chain at the bike shop worth more.

I have no idea about the bike kits you are talking about, I'm saying as a general rule you do not ALWAYS get what you pay for. Those on the internet should know that better than anyone there are scams everywhere. It's also why the old saw, "buyer beware" was coined. That wouldn't be necessary if it were always true that you "Get what you pay for."
 

geeksquid

New Member
Feb 14, 2008
114
0
0
Re: way of the future

I'm sorry to disagree. Just in general... you do not always get what you pay for. Lots of dealers, of everything, charge more than other dealers of the exact same product.

I was a wedding photographer for 30 years and 'you get what you pay for' is how a man charging twice what his product was worth would say to try and justify and exorbitant price. Some people believe it and some know better.

If that was the case there would be no Walmart. I can buy a park bike chain there for 7 bucks and a park bike chain at the bike shop for 10 bucks. Was that park chain at the bike shop worth more.

I have no idea about the bike kits you are talking about, I'm saying as a general rule you do not ALWAYS get what you pay for. Those on the internet should know that better than anyone there are scams everywhere. It's also why the old saw, "buyer beware" was coined. That wouldn't be necessary if it were always true that you "Get what you pay for."
But the statement was in reference to bike kits, so if you say you have no idea about the bike kits, there's nothing you can say. I never meant there were no exceptions.
No, if you pick the saying apart, there are exceptions. It was never meant to not have exceptions. But in some cases, it is very true. Depends on the situation. If you buy buy Chinese made bolts, you get them cheaper than American made bolts, but the Chinese bolts will break before the Americans will. The Chinese engines are cheaper but the quality is definitely lower than the Japanese made engines, which are more expensive. We could argue the point to no end.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
Re: way of the future

Yes and this is not the place to argue about semantics. By the way admitting I know nothing about the kits you are talking about, does NOT mean i do not have the right to voice a different opinion. But thanks for YOUR opinion I will file it away.
 

geeksquid

New Member
Feb 14, 2008
114
0
0
Re: way of the future

Yes and this is not the place to argue about semantics. By the way admitting I know nothing about the kits you are talking about, does NOT mean i do not have the right to voice a different opinion. But thanks for YOUR opinion I will file it away.
Oh boy, here we go. That wasn't what I was saying at all. I was saying that it can go either way depending on the subject. Sorry to get you so upset.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
Re: way of the future

And I'm sorry if I upset you.

Of course we both still believe the same things that's why arguments are a waste of time no one ever changes their minds.
 

Autocycler

New Member
Feb 14, 2008
153
1
0
Metro Washington, DC
Re: way of the future

One thing we can all agree on is that we have experienced some variances in the quality of these Chinese kits. Sometimes its funny, sometimes its frustrating, but we still love them. (p)