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deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
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north carolina
I'm old, my balance eyesight and memory are just a bit shaky. So please forgive so simple a question. Today I had a particularly tough day on the bike. Balance problems from being over tired I hope. But I had the most problems starting the bike from a stop sign on a slight incline.

I was trying to push the bike off to get a little momentum and it was making it worse I think. Do you guys start with a down stroke on the pedal or a push off then down stroke. I know this sounds like an idiot question but I hadn't been on a bike for forty years till last spring.

I hadn't noticed any problem till today, so I think it was just a day when I should have taken a long nap instead of a bike ride, but still its a fair question.

Also I'm wondering If a 26" bike would be easier to get moving on that slight incline. Any ideas would be appreciated.

Ps you aren't going to hurt my feelings if you tell me to get a horse before the bike kills me. I won't listen of course but I won't be offended either.
 

paul

Well-Known Member
Dec 23, 2007
5,548
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Kalamazoo, MI
i start pedaling get some momentum then just pop the clutch and if dosn't start right away i keep pedeling then pull in clutch get some speed again and pop the clutch., down hills are great for starting. just coast and pop the clutch
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
I have been pushing off before I pedal and I think it is making the balance uphill even worse. Not starting the engine I do that in my drive usually. Its when I stop for a stop sign that I seem to have the trouble today.

Next time I may just turn the bike around and go a different direction, they cant all have stop signs at the top of the hill. I usually ignore them but traffic was heavy today. another mistake on my part. I should have thought out my route better. I'm not as worried about the traffic passing me as the traffic coming from the side.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
Im gonna have to pay more attention to what I'm doing and think ahead more. I also think the bigger bike might help. The small bike is clumsy to start but really nice and stable running. I think the lower center of gravity does that. I"m going to do some tests with the bikes tomorrow and see if there is a difference.
 

Autocycler

New Member
Feb 14, 2008
153
1
0
Metro Washington, DC
You might want to try a 26" frame with a low center of gravity. Most of the Electra bikes are built this way (just as an example). The lower stance seems to make it easier to get a strong start, and it's less clumsy on inclined starts.

I think it's worth mentioning the psychological aspects involved. Don't let car traffic rush or pressure you into an uncomfortable start. If I have to stop on an incline, I will just let the other traffic go on by and start off when there isn't anyone waiting. It's all about enjoying the ride...no worries:)
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
The 26" frame I have is a low pedal model and actually is easier to push off. That is part of my thinking. And absolutely I let everyone go till I can start with on one in sight. Yesterday was the worst for the bike not wanting to do what I was telling it. Just having a terrible balance day.

I rode on the bike trail in the morning and was really pretty energy empty. I think that might be a lot of the problem. And I have an eye that tries to stay open an it had dried out as well. Just a convergence of things but the both things you mention are helpful.
 

nogoodnic

New Member
Jan 29, 2008
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Shelby MI
forum1.freakbikenation.com
Deacon, are you killing your bike at every stop? Personally I try ti start my bike with a slight down hill out of my driveway. And as far as bike ridding 101, I start with my right foot on the ground and the left pedal up, start with a little kick with the right foot and at the same time pushing the pedal down with the left, now onto 201, I pedal about half a dozon times to get enough speed and pop the clutch for a start...Kelly
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
No I never kill at the stop but if I don't get a reasonable amount of speed the darn clutch squeekes. That can't be a good thing. The bike will not pick up much speed until I turn it over a few times. I have a funkie small crank on the front.

I am having a bad day off the bike so i think this might be a health issue not a bike issue. I promised my wife I wouldn't ride any of my bikes, or do any building till next week. Try to give my brain time to adjust to whatever is going on in there.

But aside from all that, I have always had a problem starting this particular bike from a dead stop on an incline. The problem is getting it moving so that I can pop the clutch. I would do fine if I could just get it rolling using the motor but that is a really bad idea I'm told.
 

paul

Well-Known Member
Dec 23, 2007
5,548
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Kalamazoo, MI
i start rolling from a stop with a combination of pedel and engine. not sure if bad or the engine but it works
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
ah so... I usually try to drop the clutch after I'm definitely going but what you say makes just as much sense. It's how you climb a hill with elec assist. Just do both at the same time. I'll give it a try. So how much throttle do you start with
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
I decided to switch the engine to another bike. I stuck it on a 26" full size cruiser. I haven't finished but I thought it might be interesting to keep track of how long it take the second time.

In the first 2hours I removed the clutch and throttle controls, removed the wire connections, the rear wheel on the sissy, the chain from the rear sprocket. I checked the fit on two different frames, then figure out how to rig it and set the engine on the larger frame.

I reinstalled the engine, reinstall the clutch and throttle controls.

That took me several days the first time I did it. Now I have to remove the sprocket from the sissy wheel and reinstall it on the big cruiser. Move the cdr and kill switch to the big cruiser. Last but certainly not least reinstall the chain. It will most likely be to short leaving me to head out to Wally's place to try that bmx type chain from bell. Truth is I'm curious. If that doesn't work I'm going to be begging links again guys. So you are forewarned.

I can't see what I've got left taking more than a couple of hours except for picking up the chain.
 

paul

Well-Known Member
Dec 23, 2007
5,548
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Kalamazoo, MI
i look forward to seeing your new motorized bicycle deacon. keep the seat low and it will help with balance. only reason a seat needs to be high is for pedal power when seated but most stand up to pedal to get the engine started
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
I have done that with all my other bikes but I'm not sure I can handle the pedals low like that. I can not stand on a bike at all. Probably part of my starting problem. Don't get really good torque.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
We were discussing a tricycle on a thread a little farther down. I have been thinking about it and out of the muck of my mind these days a few things surfaced. The first time I built a trailer to haul large batteries I was surprised how much more stable the bike was. The trailer even with only one arm helped to keep the bike upright.

So I got to thinking, what would happen if I built a trailer just to make the bike more stable. What would it look like. First of all it wouldn't need to be very wide but wide enough to give it stability. Bicycle wheels of course would be ideal. I have a couple of twenty inch wheels from junkers. Both are front wheels so they are free wheeling.

Those two on a lightweight pvc frame wouldn't add much to the power requirements of the bike. Since there wouldn't be much of a load on the trailer the tongues wouldn't need much strength more flexibility.

Yes i said tongues. Run two from the trailer, one to each side of the wheel. Building a trailer to stabilize the bike would be a lot less expensive than buying and modifying a tricycle to accept the gas engine. I could use the design i previously showed here. That would solve my stumbling problem also might help with the starting out from a dead stop as well. I also wouldn't need a basket on the bike for errands.

Okay think about it and show me the error in my thinking. There is always an error. I think it would look like this.
 
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Big Joe

New Member
Jan 6, 2008
130
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0
80
Decatur Al
Deacon
Would the PVC pipe and the trailer be strong and heavy enough to keep you upright if you started losing your balance?
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
Good point.

I guess I need to build the trailer and see how it does while I still have some good days left. I expect I can stay upright long enough to test it. For sure I'm never going to be perfect again. If this doesn't work then I expect it will be electo trike for me. At least that won't go fast enough to get me killed. Well you get killed walking, but odds are better.