Gas Friction Drive list

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by MaxPower, Apr 29, 2011.

  1. MaxPower

    MaxPower New Member

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    I've been thinking about buying a friction drive kit and I'm starting a thread on the research I've done so far. There is no Friction Drive section so I'm posting it here. I'm excluding Electrics and DIY. If you have opinions please post! Vendors welcome of course. This is a work in progress and this is what I have so far.

    Staton-Inc: $180 + 13 shipping to 85635. Home Staton-inc has been around for a long time and is well known in the industry. Their website says since 1984. They are also made in the USA. They offer a variety of engines for their friction drive. Both 2 and 4 stroke and a recent addition of a propane version. cool. There is a also a selection of 6 roller sizes, more than other retailers I've seen. The roller itself is SOLID and screws into a clutch bell. I doubt it will break. I wish the rollers had a sprag gear. For those that don't know a sprag gear allows you to coast downhill without the friction of the engine turning. The Un-spraged roller does however allow for engine braking, up to a point. The roller is suspended by two bearings which are press fit into an aluminum channel. I think It would be more convenient to be able to replace the bearings by hand without the aid of a press but I guess it makes for a more solid device. There are two clutch bell sizes to choose from. A 78mm and a 54mm. staton is the only option for a 52m clutch engine... I think. I don't know if the rollers are interchangeable but I would think you could just unscrew it and put another one on. I'm impressed by the aluminum channel. It's thick and looks sturdy. It's harder to weld on aluminum so if you want to do modifications it may be harder to do. The kit hardware looks quality too and comes with a throttle and kill switch. Staton has emailed me his opinion on the his and the other kits but asked me not to post them here.

    Bike Motor Parts: $140 + $15 shipping BICYCLE ENGINE KITS FROM BIKEMOTORPARTS.COM. Website is down! This is quite a versatile friction drive. Not only is it capable of operating as a friction drive but you can buy some extra parts to make it into a belt/chain drive. $60 for belt and $70 for chain. It's nice If you want to try something else. It also has the capability of working as a rear or front mounted drive system. Their old kit used a sprag type roller which I like but now they have converted to a steel drive that uses a set screw to hold a interchangeable roller. It's cool you can change sizes but they only sell a 1" or a 1.25" diameter roller. I don't know if it's as durable as the one piece roller staton sells. Their channel body is steel and doesn’t look as thick as statons either. I think it’s because steel doesn’t need to be as thick but who knows. The kit comes with a channel bracket that’s 5" but they also sell a longer one (8.5") for mono-shock stile bikes. I'm willing to bet they would sell you kit with this version if you ask them. BMP doesn’t sell engines with their kits and you have to buy your engine somewhere else. I kind of wish they did so I could save on shipping cost. They ship priority mail with a delivery time of 2 weeks. 2 weeks kind of sucks in my book. They also don't come with a throttle or kill switch and you have to buy it extra. Throttles cost $16 and kill switches are $5. That’s fine with me (because I like to make my own) but some may find it irritating. I have heard good things about their customer service and their kits come with a 5 year warranty but will only be repaired or replaced at their discretion. Again, this may all change with new management.

    Thats dax: $150 + $19 shipping KIT_FRICTION_DRIVE. That's dax has a new friction kit that I don't think, as of this writing, anyone has tried. Dax has said that it's improvement over the old design but I think they were just re-selling a BMP kit. The website says it has a "New Radius Designed Main Bracket." The old kit cost $100 so it's at $50 improvement. The kit looks similar to the every other kit (especially the drive roller, 1" and 1.25") but I would assume its different because of the warning on dax's website. "Any duplication in part or whole without the written permission from Howell Labs is strictly prohibited!" I really don't like this hard core patent protection. We all want to share ideas. Dax has been pushing their new pocket bike engine in conjunction with the friction kit. I have only read good things about it (except for the price). The website has a picture of someone holding the motor in one hand. It’s really small but I'm assuming really powerful.
    This information came from dax: Our FD Kit uses a 1.25 one way sprag free wheel roller. What separates our FD from all the others consists of many reasons. I will list a few of the main reasons, first being that the main bracket is a dual Function Bracket being that it can be used for both Friction Drive or chain drive. It is the same bracket thus the name Universal. Also. For the use of Friction drive, the bracket has a Copyrighted Radius design. No other FD kit has this and can not have it since it is our protected design. The Radius design allows the installer to pivot the engine if needed to make sure it is a level install. A critical function for any carburetor engine. Also, our FD kit is longer and step drilled Pivot points to allow the installer to use the best position for the U brackets and wheel position. A lot of these new bikes have stretched frames and this is also critical for a successful install. Also, the Universal Radius Bracket is tapered towards the pivot bolt position. This serves several functions. First and most obvious , it saves weight, but mostly, it changes the resonance of the bracket and this virtually eliminates vibration that enters the frame of the bike making for the smoothest ride any one will experience. It is un real how smooth your ride is with this setup. The list of differences goes on and on. Our Support straps have a much longer slot to accommodate dual stepped holes for the Quick Release FD or Threaded Rod CD so you can fit best your install for your particular bike. Our Bearings are the largest I have seen and the Bell and shaft is one piece steel and a much larger shaft for more durability and strength. Also.. Our U bracket has off set holes for shifting the U bracket up or down, very important. Also.. Our U bracket support backing strap can be set inside the U bracket or out side. A simple function, but critical for some installs as this will allow the installer to invert the U bracket on top of the bike rear stay, or under it. This can raise or lower the front of the Main bracket by up to +- 2cm or 3/4 inch. Again.. Critical for a level install. Again. The list goes on.. I will have to make a Video showing all the features of this kit. These are all simple features that are copyright protected. And so simple. Kind of like the paper clip or mouse trap. We have the better mouse trap. Boy.. I am long on wind here. When I get a chance , I will whip up a video on this FD CD Universal Kit. Enjoy the ride..

    Dimension Edge: Dimension Edge 1987. I really don't like this companies website. It has a lot of disjointed links and the site doesn’t flow together. For instance they have a separate website for ordering. Also it seems to have a lot of old info and products that are not available. That being said, This is a pretty cool design because it doesn’t require a centrifugal clutch. They sell a centrifugal clutches for their kit but engagement of the roller to the wheel relies on a lowing mechanism. Less parts to break and you can raise the engine for coasting and pedaling. I really like this. Dimension edge calls it "shift on the fly." Most kits rollers are supported by two bearings but DE’s is connected directly to the engine with no supports. I think this is bad but it does allow for on the fly roller change out. I also like the choice of drive roller material and sizes. website says caspen, aggregate, or urethane drive wheels. They also sell a kit called the "Simple Simon." This kit is cool because of how simple it is. It's essentially just a L bracket attached to the bike frame and has no moving parts. There is no way to disengage the drive roller from the wheel unless you unbolt the bracket.

    Bumble Bee Bolt-on: $245 + $26 shipping to 85635 Bumble Bee Bolt On

    Daemon Bikes: Welcome To Daemon Bikes

    Island Hopper Bicycle Motors: Island Hopper
     

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    #1 MaxPower, Apr 29, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2012
  2. 2dawgs

    2dawgs New Member

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    Dax's products and service are top notch. My experiences with them has been great.
     
  3. cannonball2

    cannonball2 Active Member

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    Look you have to understand friction drives are some what of an anycronism, but they are charming. They are never going to be fast, maybe 30mph tops. What they are are smooth, and generally quiet, the 2stoke industrial engines being the exception. Unless the engine is of large HP hill climbing is not a strong point. BUT, they are simplicity at is best. I doubt the expenditure on rollers will exceed the $ thirst of the china girl concept. All that being said, I think the 4stroke concept is the most viable. I dont know who is the maker of the kit I have but it looks similar to the DAX kit. but more elegant. For $299 maybe it to high of $, but it was easy to get(all in one box) the engine is new and the ebay format(paypal) gives some recourse. If you are a seasoned bike builder, you realize some degeree of skill is going to be required to get any bike up and running. The fact that all these kit look similar indicates the common denomiator of simple design. Anything more complex is defeating the elegance of friction design which is simplicity.
     
  4. MaxPower

    MaxPower New Member

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    This is exactly why I'm considering one :)
     
  5. happyvalley

    happyvalley New Member

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    Pretty good summary, I've owned Staton, Bmp and the Dimension Edge fd kits.

    One slight correction needed here:
    The DE kits, both the direct drive and centrifugal clutch models, do have two support bearings on the drive shaft where it enters the engine channel.
     
  6. skiball83

    skiball83 New Member

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    I have the xc50s super titan with friction drive set up (the older one) from thatsdax.com, and its great. I highly recommend it to anyone wanting a friction drive. Plus Duane is great and will take care of you if a problem arrives.
     
    #6 skiball83, Apr 30, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2011
  7. rohmell

    rohmell Active Member

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    I have friction drives fro BMP, DAX and DImension Edge. The DAX kit has the sprag roller, but only in the 1.25" size. The DE kit was the worst of the bunch, so I got rid of it.
    I am in NY so with NYS Sales tax, the BMP was more expensive than the DAX kit, which came with the throttle/kill switch included in the price. The BMP kit uses the lever throttle and a doorbell pushbutton type of kill switch.

    Also, BGF on eBay had a friction kit available, included engine, looks like it uses the Mitsubishi clone engine, but the drive roller looks like some sort of drive belt sprocket.
     
  8. cannonball2

    cannonball2 Active Member

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    The roller on the BGF kit is similar to the Hongdu/Solex roller. Does look like a toothed belt pully in a way. It drives extremely well on the Hongdu. my guess is it tries to address wet running by squeegeing the water into the slots and out of the roller. In any case it is a great roller and shows no wear after much use.
     
  9. rohmell

    rohmell Active Member

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    I would jump on the BGF friction drive kit, except I have heard bad reports about it, such as the holes for the bearings in the u channel were misaligned, causing the shaft to bind, etc.
    Looking for feedback from anyone with the BGF rear friction drive kit.
     
  10. thatsdax

    thatsdax Member

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    With the Titan XC50S and 1.25 roller, you can expect a top speed of around 34mph and a cruise of 26. Climb is great as I have pulled 6000-8000 feet up deer creek canyon many times with no problem. You can Goggle Earth the canyon if you like all the way to Tiny Town. It may not be 8000 feet, but it will be around that area on certain peaks of the road. With the Titan GT50R, you can expect speeds of 40mph or more and a cruise of 35 or so. Keep in mind these are all parameters experienced at 6000-9000 feet. Since you lose around 4 percent of power for every 1000 feet you climb, those at lower altitudes will experience more power and better results.
     
  11. MaxPower

    MaxPower New Member

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    thanks for the info dax. I've sent emails to the other company's for their input but none have responded. I have a few questions I hope you can answer. Will your new kit use a sprag gear? Are you going to offer bundled engine and FD kits? What are the pop rivets in the picture of your kit for? and lastly how does your kit differ from the others?
     
  12. MaxPower

    MaxPower New Member

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    added more info about dax on first post.
     
  13. bandito

    bandito New Member

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    OP Duane at Dax is top notch and his titan motors are sweet. I had one and miss it, had the power to go up steep hills and purred like a kitten. I'm sure i've annoyed him with my questions in the past but thats just bizz I wouldn't hesitate to buy from him again in a heartbeat. He'll stand behind his stuff too.
     
  14. crossout

    crossout New Member

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    you say you had one what happened to it?...i am looking to buy his rear chain mount with a super titan....
     
  15. bandito

    bandito New Member

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    I sold it because it was installed on a cheap wally world bike that I wasnt thrilled with, theres a big diff between a 100$ bike and the next step up say a 200$ bike. The R/S staton kit I just bought the jurys still out if I want to stay with it or not. If I'm not going to be happy with the power a DAX titan will be on order.
     
  16. donutguy

    donutguy New Member

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    I have a Staton friction kit with the Mitsubishi TLE 43 engine.

    I've owned it for close to 3 years and I did a LOT of research before purchasing it.

    My conclusions.....Dave Staton's kit is probably the most expensive kit out there- and it's worth *every* single penny.

    Every part included was high quality and it's quite obvious that someone took the time to design this kit so it will stand up to years of abuse.

    It literally took less then a hour to completely install it on my bike. I have close to 3 thousand miles on it and I beat on it unmercifully- it spends quite a bit of time at wide open throttle and the only thing I've replaced is the spark plug (I swapped the factory plug out with an NKG Iridium) and the centrifugal clutch pads recently.

    I'm sure the other manufacturers have good products, but as far as build quality of the parts and service after the sale.....Dave Staton is hard to beat and he's getting all my business for the foreseeable future.

    If I have one complaint....I would have liked to see a higher quality kill switch and twist throttle instead of the small lever throttle included in the kit. Both items are completely serviceable, but I replaced the included throttle with traditional twist throttle shortly after installing the kit.

    I know lots of folks bag on friction kits, but I've had absolutely no problems with mine, I am still on the original tires (I rotate them every 1000 miles to balance out the wear) and while it's true that friction kits suck in the rain.....I don't ride very much (if at all) in foul weather-so that's a non-issue for me.

    My only other advice is to start out with a decent bike....I installed my kit on a mid-level Specialized 29'er hybrid (about a 500 dollar bike) if you put this kit on a Wal-Mart bike.......the bike will fall apart around the kit.

    In total, I have about a 1100 bucks in my bike, it doesn't nickel and dime me to death and provides me with hours of entertainment:)

    Here's a pic.......

    My Bike | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
     
  17. Blues88s

    Blues88s New Member

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    That's a beautiful bike!
     
  18. donutguy

    donutguy New Member

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    Thanks.....it's my baby:)

    I don't drink, gamble, smoke or womanize, so it's my only vice.

    I usually spare no expense when it comes to my ride!
     
  19. gobigkahuna

    gobigkahuna New Member

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  20. cannonball2

    cannonball2 Active Member

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    You can friction drive that bike no problem. If you can fab parts you can build a killer set up with one of the smaller 2.5hp 4stroke industrial type engines. Will have plenty of power with the right roller size. Smoother and queiter than a 2stroke. These engines sell for around a hundred bucks. I spent around $115 on my last build, excluding the 10yr old bike. See the DIY section, under Lifan bike.
     

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