Hi, I'm planning a huge adventure, please help!

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by crowley1027, Oct 16, 2011.

  1. crowley1027

    crowley1027 New Member

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    Hey everyone, my name is Nate. I'm a less than successful 21-year old, who doesn't have too much going for him except his intellect. I am going to move to California, where I have a room in my brother's house, free of charge. I contemplated the methods of going from here in Westerly, RI to California, and I've settled on the idea of using a gas-powered bicycle to do a coast to coast trip. I don't want to get into all the details, because you'll see the whole thing in movie theaters soon ()

    I need all the help I can get as far as the bicycle and engine go. I have a...*runs to check what kind of bike*...A mongoose cambridge. First thing I should know is -- should I get another bike? The triangle hole in the frame measures 12" vertically, and 24" diagonally; is that big/good enough for most engines? I could have a friend cut / weld a new bar in.

    Now, the most difficult part: Engine/drivetrain.

    What engine? What size? What mounting style? What modifications? What about using two or three sprockets and a shifter assy on the other side to have a wider range of power?

    I need to know it all -- remember, I'll be putting 3000 miles or so onto this engine, so I need a good, reliable, long lasting engine and parts. I'll carry a whole bunch of internal/external parts with me in case of failure.
    --what parts would be most likely to fail/which parts should I bring extra?

    For legal issues, let's pretend this is all hypothetical so you can tell me what engines I "could" use, instead of what engines I can't since they are illegal.

    Any questions, feel free to ask -- Bashing is welcome, since whatever you have to say could be used in an educational way to me.

    Thanks everyone who helps - Maybe I'll stop and see you on my way to California! brnot
     
  2. The_Aleman

    The_Aleman New Member

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    Welcome to the forum Crowley! I admire your gumption! I'm a longtime rider myself, but have yet to take a coast-to-coast trip.

    I think the best setup for you would be a Q-matic kit with either a Huasheng 49cc or a Honda GXH50 and a 58-62T wheel sprocket on a Manic Mechanic custom sprocket adapter for your wheel. Either engine will be capable of making that trip as long as you don't rev em over 7500RPM for extended periods. The Q-matic transmission itself is well-suited to extended running. The MM adapter and sprocket for your exact wheel will make chain alignment easy. You may be able to make the trip on a single chain!

    If you have any more questions, you're in the right place! Lots of knowledgeable MaBers here! :D
     
  3. crowley1027

    crowley1027 New Member

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    Silly question, but I just got a new lawn mower, and it has a 148cc engine on it. I was wondering if it would be any good for this coast to coast application? It's a briggs&stratton, but the way it's oriented is causing concern -- i'd Ideally like to turn it on it's side, but I can't seem to do that because the gas tank and air cleaner are mounted in such a way that if I turned it, the gas would leak out/not go into the engine. Any ideas? Could I remove the assembly, attach a line from an external gas tank, replace air cleaner, and good to go?
     
  4. The_Aleman

    The_Aleman New Member

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    hey, almost anything is possible, right? The Briggs motor would be plenty strong enough and up to the task, but the build and setting it up would be a lot of work. There's a few experienced builders here who build Briggs bikes, and their work isn't something you can put together quickly. That's full-on custom stuff for masters of the game, IMHO. Legality-wise, a 148cc is right under the 149cc moped limit in California, just FYI.

    Dunno what timeframe you have to build this bike. I'm not qualified to say how long a Briggs build will take. I'll let the masters chime in on that. All I can say is, a kit will install in a weekend if you thought it out completely and have the right parts up front.
     
  5. crowley1027

    crowley1027 New Member

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    The thing is, (If I have my terminology correct) this is a veritcal shaft motor, which pretty much means that the motor is oriented in such a way to spin something horizontally (the lawnmower blades). I want to turn it 90* so I can run a chain on it. Can it be done?

    Could I just run a vertical crank to the horizontal shaft, have the motor spin the horizontal shaft, and turn the vertical crank, which in turn turns something else? I don't know, it just seems too involved.

    How far away from the HT engines should I stay? Remember, this is coast to coast...
     
  6. The_Aleman

    The_Aleman New Member

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    I would never trust an HT coast to coast. Ever. I put over 3K on HT and over 3K on HS (Huasheng). Not even a comparison in reliability.
     
  7. crowley1027

    crowley1027 New Member

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    I'm just trying to find the cheapest yet most reliable way to go about building the bike. I have around 2k to spend on the whole trip, and I'd like a little cash for when I hit Cali.

    Maybe I should steal someone's chainsaw and rip it apart?


    Just kidding, calm down ;)
     
  8. The_Aleman

    The_Aleman New Member

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    $1K would get you a Q-matic kit, upgraded tires and tubes, all oils, spare belt, spare chains, a rack and pannier bags, and beer while you put it all together.

    The other $1K should be more than plenty to get to Cali if you camp smart! :D
     
  9. Drewd

    Drewd New Member

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    I'd take a happy time coast to coast with no worries or concerns. My last 2 builds are bulletproof and the only problem I had was one engine's head bolts got a little loose on a 7+ hour ride (continuous riding with only a 30 minute stop for lunch, engines ran hard the entire time) and I had to tighten them....I guess red locktite gave out after 2 years. I have shiftkits and the drive chain on them stretches a little after 4-5 hours of continuous use requiring a 10 minute adjustment.

    Sure, the HT engines are cheap but they can be made reliable with not much effort. I'm very happy with my DAX HT and a old BGF happytime that have been super reliable. The DAX finally woke up and developing some decent power....it only took over a 1 1/2 years for that to happen.
     
  10. crowley1027

    crowley1027 New Member

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    Couldn't I throw a huge last gear on the bike, so I can have a low revving, high cruising gear? Wouldn't that help the engine run better, since it's not revving as high so much? I'm going to be riding 60+ hours a week, so the engine is going to get a workout!! haha
     
  11. The_Aleman

    The_Aleman New Member

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    The simple fact is, the HT is not designed for long continuous running. The old instructions used to say not to run them over 30 minutes at a time. One thing all engines designed for longevity have in common is that they have an iron cylinder liner. The HT doesn't have it.

    Sure, there's some guys here who can build/tweak/claim they can go thousands of miles on an HT. But there is no one who has gone cross-country on one HT and proved it. No one. You're welcome to attempt to be the first. My money's against you, sorry.

    My opinion and experience is that HTs are toy engines. They often require a lot of work. They are disposable, and oftentimes you'll buy one and it's a lemon. You wanna go cross-country on a MaB, build a bike with a modern industrial-rated engine. Seriously.
     
    #11 The_Aleman, Oct 16, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2011
  12. crowley1027

    crowley1027 New Member

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    Could you bore out a cylinder and upgrade the piston ring and/or piston head for more power?? Just a thought, hahaha
     
  13. MotorBicycleRacing

    MotorBicycleRacing Active Member

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    Your idea has been tried and done before.
    Here is one of the attempts. Nothing like learning from others right?
    Ride Across America - MotoredBikes.com: Motorized Bicycle Forum

     
    #13 MotorBicycleRacing, Oct 16, 2011
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2011
  14. crowley1027

    crowley1027 New Member

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    Perfect! Thanks for the link!
     
  15. DaveC

    DaveC Member

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    Honesty to god, buy a Greyhound bus ticket and buy a bike in Cali. Otherwise you need to take a spare motor and enough parts to rebuild one on the road and the tools needed to do it. Or you could end up in Bumfook Arkansas with some redneck-looking guys playing guitars and banjos saying, "squeal like a pig!" while you wait for a parts delevery.

    As big a problem mechanical can be you really need to investigate all the MB laws for the states you are going to be traveling through. Some laws are pretty lax the there are states where MB's are out-right banned. There are laws about the amount of power you need to ride Interstate roads but there's also provisions for riding highways if there is no other practical way to get somewhere.
     
  16. Goat Herder

    Goat Herder Gutter Rider

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    He said he wanted a huge adventure lol.
     
  17. 5-7HEAVEN

    5-7HEAVEN Well-Known Member

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    Hey, you're getting better responses on this forum.

    Do the shift kit. Your engine will be humming at a higher cruising, not ready to explode. Average mph will be higher, hill climbing easier, and the many flats you'll have will be easier to fix.

    I ride 60+ miles on my Tanaka 47R engine. It's not even breaking a sweat, and neither am I. I'm out like a light when I reach home though, but then I'm a senior citizen, lol.dance1
     
  18. CTripps

    CTripps Active Member

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    I can't recommend an engine for you, but invest in good tires and tubes. If you can, try to get your hands on a small bike trailer. We got one through Craig's List for $30, took the old nylon shell and kid's sling seat off and put a plywood deck on it. Then you'll be able to carry a larger gas can, oil, spare tubes, small tent, or whatever without loading it all over your bike.
     
  19. Acraze

    Acraze Member

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    I'm thinking a friction drive would help more than a chain mounted motor.
     
  20. thegnu

    thegnu New Member

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    It's simple ... just follow 2 rules
    1. build the bike with easy to source parts such as those found in any lawncare or small engine repairshop that are reliable .
    2. FOLLOW THE K.I.S.S RULE most important keep it simple stupid
    Good luck .
     

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