Best Bike for 1st build - NOOB

fishing_basil

New Member
May 13, 2019
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So I just saw one of these and Im hooked on the idea!

100% noob - no idea what I'm doing so I here for help.

I have decent mechanical skills, (change brakes on a car, etc) however, none with fabrication nor any fab tools.

I have a bike berry kit on the way. Now for the hard part, what is the best bike to learn how to convert. This will not be ridden on any main road, just my hilly neighboorhood and to the local community park.

Wal-Mart as a few choices, but for every positive post, there are negative posts.


Kent Bayside, Genisis Onex, Nel Lusso, Hyper 26" -

So if you have any positive suggestions that will be great!
 

Greg58

Well-Known Member
May 1, 2011
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Welcome to the forum, the easiest bike is probably a single speed beach cruiser. Both of my bikes are beach cruisers, I added side pull bmx front brakes and they stop well. The cruiser has a lot of room in the frame that makes the install much easier.
 
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Tom from Rubicon

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Apr 4, 2016
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Welcome basil,
The first contemporary motorized bicycle was built on a Nel Lusso. Powered by a BBR 4stroke kit. Blew me away!
Bought the same kit built on the Huffy Classic.
I did two upgrades. 31T rear sprocket and a sprocket adapter instead of the so called Rag Joint. The last upgrade was a NT Carb.
(Adaptor link to the one I used.)
https://mbrebel.com/product-category/bike-motor-parts/sprockets-adapters-415-chain/
Tom from Rubicon, WI
 

fishing_basil

New Member
May 13, 2019
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Hi Thank you for the warm welcome!

I decided to go with the Huffy Cranbrook - single speed.

From my searches, there just seem to be more build info and a decent frame for the price.

My plan for extra safety, I will not use the Fenders and plan on packing the bearing during the build. Hand brake will be added to the front as well.

Long term ie after its built and running... I see the Sprocket adapter and chain tensioner are a few other important updates.

Thanks for the information.. Ill keep you posted
 
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Tom from Rubicon

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Apr 4, 2016
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I did use a rag joint on my Huffy (soon to be replaced with a hub adapter) and as forties said it is troublesome.
It happens because the I.D. of the wheel sprocket is smaller than the dust cover. I took advantage of what should be a problem by machining the I.D. of the wheel sprocket to center on the dust cover. It is the only way to assure concentricity
Tom from Rubicon
 

fishing_basil

New Member
May 13, 2019
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well after a 5 hour build Friday, my bike is alive. Fired up after a few tries.. No issues running let it get hot, then turned it off to cool.

about 1 hours later I took it for a quick spin 2-3 house down a few times. Let me son ride it, he popped the clutch and it jammed. Im guessing the chain was stretched and caused the issue.

Long story short, I have the CNC hub adapter and spring chain tensor on the way!

The Hub on the Cranbrock is a pain to tighten. It keeps coming loose, which im sure added to the chain issue.
 
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forties

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Jun 2, 2017
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I also installed a sprung tensioner on my bike. You need a lot of tension on those things to make them work well. IIRC mine came with a weak spring which i swapped out for a much stronger one.
 
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fishing_basil

New Member
May 13, 2019
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wow - i could not make up all my issues this past 6 days!

1. Broke 7 of the 9 screws for the "rag" sprocket - They still had room to tighten and no I did not cross thread all 7 :) - I thought that after the 1st one broke.

2. 2 of the electrical connections came with poor connections, I did not notice until i was about to throw it away :) Motor would intermittently just shut off and would not start.

3. Exhaust Gasket disintegrate

4. Stock Chain tensioner stripped and is useless - this is ok, i bought the upgraded version

5. Fuel lines all developed splits.

6. The stock chain broke probably due to the above

8. Wife is getting concerned about how obsessed I have become

How I resolved

1. Bought a CNC HUB
2. Re-crimped the electrical connections
3. Bought a 02 sensor gasket for a Toyota Highlander
4. Upgraded all my fuel lines
5. Bought a 41 chain from my local hardware store and adjusted the motor so the chain is now within tolerance without the spring tensior.. this is my favorite
6. I bought a better spring at the same local hardware store (still in the bag)
7. Better than topless bars :)

Heres to good times this weekend :)
 

Citi-sporter

Active Member
Jun 16, 2014
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I don't know why people keep recommending huffy Cranebrook coaster brake bikes for their first bike engine Their coasterbrakes are pure trash, and there's not enough braking, especially for someone who wanted to ride a hilly neighborhood.

I work at a community bike shop and we just assembled and tuned a new Schwinn Wayfarer 700c bike..




I was pretty impressed with it's quality and how it rode. the brakes were great.

It's a pretty nice bike for about $200 dollars and it's got two V-brakes, upright handlebars, and a 7 speed Shimano rear deraillleur with twist shifter. Also comes with fenders and a rear rack, and the frame is the much required "v" fame in steel that CG bike engines mount very securely on..

I wouldn't suggest anything less for anyone considering setting up and riding a motorized bike.
 

Greg58

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May 1, 2011
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For the advanced builder that bike is fine, most people want to build a low end starter bike not knowing if they can complete it. They will need a dual brake lever and figure out what to do with the twist shifter to mount the throttle. As a first bike the coaster bike is much simpler, and the larger the tire the better the ride.
 

Citi-sporter

Active Member
Jun 16, 2014
186
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North Bend, Or,
What part of putting together a first time motorized bike with a single, unreliable and weak rear brake, on a bike that's notorious for cheap and unreliable, to ride in a hilly neighborhood did I not convey the danger of?

Motorized bikes are dangerous enough. Stacking the odds in your favor in Murphy's court is always a good investment.

Plus, setting up a dual brake lever is no more challenging than tackling installing a bike engine kit, and you move the twist shifter up the bar a couple inches, the room is there. It's real easy stuff, and you keep the shifters and brakes. If the owner decides he's made a mistake with motorizing this bike, you still have a decent 'round neighborhood cruiser.

700c hybrid wheels will accept wider tires in 38 to 44 mm..https://www.brandscycle.com/product...MIqMfbgba54gIVEvDACh1vbQPCEAQYASABEgJLYvD_BwE

https://www.biketiresdirect.com/pro...MIqMfbgba54gIVEvDACh1vbQPCEAQYBCABEgK26vD_BwE

If you're going to do it, do it correctly.

The fact remains that better brakes are mandatory for motorized bikes and motorizing a notoriously cheap, dangerous coasterbrake only cruiser is a false economy. Especially with their weak wheels and the lack of two wheels braking. I'm sure someone could find a half decent 7 speed cruiser through Amazon for under $150.

This Schwinn stood out as having decent equipment and I've been a professional bicycle mechanic for 25 years, and I've seen a slew of cheap bikes from WallyWorld.
 
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