I'm BAAaack!!!!

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by cityevader, Apr 3, 2009.

  1. cityevader

    cityevader New Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Messages:
    170
    Likes Received:
    0
    After last year's fiasco with multiple pinch-flats and strandings and poor quality "80cc" 2-stroke joke, which I threw in the trash, and following by a week-long attempt with 5-mile-pedalling to bus stop to ride to work (peak of gas prices) which was thwarted by a pickup colliding into front of bus and smooshing my ride and leaving me stranded again, I swore off bikes for good. A month later I was waxing philosophically about remembering only the good times the motorbike gave and not remembering the bad, but still swore them away, and many of you said you'd ride forever and I should get back on the horse again. Well, I'm BAAaaack!

    No way I'd ever go crummy two-stroke-joke with ridiculous carb setup again. So I got a 4-stroke rear mount kit from bicycle-engines.com and put it on a cheap Craigslist full-suspender in hopes of reducing pinch flats if the rear wheel could "give" a little.
    [​IMG]

    I laughed at the idea of having the entire heavy assembly held on solely by the rear axle. I've had enough flats and suffered with tire removal, but to have a flopping engine too?!?! So I grooved and welded the brackets to the rear drop-outs so the tire could come right out and the engine assembly could remain unchanged. Being rear suspended, I couldn't mount the front turnbuckles to the seatpost, so I welded in a length of flat steel to the front pivot of swing arm.
    [​IMG]

    I did three consecutive trips to work, totalling exactly 120 miles, and haven't gotten stranded yet! The engine can only be heard if I turn my head, minimal vibration, doesn't bog down nearly as much as the 2 stroke. I'm in the hills with constant grade changes. but I manage 10mph with pedalling on the steep stretches. 25mph most of the time, 35mph downhill. Once in the city's perfect flats, 30 mph. Each way of 20.0 miles takes exactly one hour.

    I fill up at gas station next to work, go home and back, round trip of 40.0 miles and hardly a drop left in tank....fillup is 93 cents and .40 gallons ....exactly 100.0 miles per gallon.

    Minor gripes, the two bearings in cover has severe flat spots, like been pounded on one point and dented race. No response from email to bicycle-engines.com. Hoped for warranty, but impatient to ride so went with it. Gearbox is louder than engine, but much quieter than anticipated. And throttle cable they sent was way too short. Would be fine for in-frame mount, but a foot and a half too short for the rear kit it came with. I choked when local bike shop charged me nearly $15 for cable and housing! And today the centrifugal clutch hangs up and stays engaged coming to a stop stalls restarts with wheel turning with each pull, like the return springs aren't pulling shoes back in. Maybe a teardown/lube in order.

    Ridiculous gripe....the center kickstand I ordered from them also... the mounting bolt was sticking out funny and threads were mauled in kickstand. I tried to grind the tip of bolt's threads to get back down to clean spot and my jaw dropped. Of all the ridiculous "China quality control" issues I've seen, this tops it. I wish I could actually show you guys/gals.....there are no threads. The "threads" do not actually thread. Meaning that each thread makes a single loop around and back to itself, without advancing up one pitch for each revolution. It's like a ring-shank nail!!! Unbelievable.

    Final mod will be to weld the front deraileur to keep it on the big ring and move the grip-shift for rear over to the left side (throttle and grip shift don't mesh, so currently only able to shift front gears which bites).

    Overall, I'm glad I listened to my heart and my fellow motorbikers here and got back on the horse!!!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. cityevader

    cityevader New Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Messages:
    170
    Likes Received:
    0
    I guess I can't post three pics at once, so here's the main view

    [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

  3. Dave31

    Dave31 Moderator
    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2008
    Messages:
    11,207
    Likes Received:
    14
    That is a sweet ride, glad you are back on the Iron Horse.

    You should be able to post up to five pics on one post?
     
  4. cityevader

    cityevader New Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Messages:
    170
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yesterday was trip #5 to work, and stopped at gas station after work. It was really windy, and when I came out from paying, the bike was on its side. The engine'gearbox itself wasn't even scratched, but the engine rack was tweaked, which caused the drive chain to "ride up" on the sprocket teeth as I pushed it to the pump. I loosened up the bolt and pushed with feet and pulled with hands for about 15 minutes until it got roughly aligned between the sprockets. Adjusted the turnbuckles until things were good enough. Rode 20 miles home, felt a few wierd kicks from chain like riding up again. Spent about an hour in the shop tweaking and twisting until sprockets were as perfectly aligned as it was ever going to get.
    Today, rode 20 uneventful miles to work this morning. On return trip I get about a mile away and BANG! SCREEECH of locked rear wheel. Chain must have ridden up all the way onto tips of sprocket teeth because the side mounts were flared way out from the compression and one broke completely, at which point the chain came off and wrapped up and locked wheel. Thankfully I was still in town and not out on the 6inch shoulder of curving mountain highway with nowhere to hide. I separated the mess to push it a couple blocks to bus station to get within 6 miles of home. Plop the bike onto front rack. $3 fare and they're not allowed to give change for my $5 bill, and two blocks later the bus driver kicks me off because there's a gas tank on the bike and rules say no-no. I asked for my money back and he said no. I stare at him while pointing to my broken bike and ask him if he realizes I have to push it 20 miles to get home. "sorry" barely audible through the closing doors.
    Begging a co-worker and waiting 2 hours until their shift ended got me home 4 hours late, but home nonetheless.

    So, maybe motorbikes truly aren't for me, despite being a patient man and fully capable fabicator/repairman. The long distances on unfriendly roads combined with being stranded on said roads so far from home has made me decide to give it all up again, but for good this time!!
    Anybody want a slightly used rear-mount 4 stroke kit and bike combo for relatively cheap? Make me an offer. Maybe someone in Bay Area will take the whole thing so no shipping? I'm disappointed because this 4 stroke setup was feeling super reliable compared to the Chinagirl, but it's clearly a jinx that is on me, not necessarily the equipment.
     
    #4 cityevader, Apr 17, 2009
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2009
  5. toker_ace

    toker_ace Member

    Joined:
    Oct 15, 2008
    Messages:
    475
    Likes Received:
    1
    get you a friction drive from staton-inc. and you will never have any problems. only drawback is wet weather.
     
  6. Earthman

    Earthman New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    Messages:
    82
    Likes Received:
    0
    Keep the MB for tinkering, and find another, more reliable way to commute to & from work. Best of luck & keep safe.
     
  7. cityevader

    cityevader New Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Messages:
    170
    Likes Received:
    0
    Against my better judgement, I fixed the bike today. Took considerably less effort than I'd thought. A bit of metal backing and welding and realigning and straigtening wheel and it's good to go. Definitely gonna stick with the car for commuting, especially since i'll be moving soon with only a freeway access over the hill to work. Perhaps i'll keep the motorbike for putt-putting around town.
     

Share This Page