Ridin' DIY

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
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north carolina
I ride my bikes over pretty much the same course year round. I don't go too many places just around the neighborhood mostly. About once a month someone flags me down to ask where I bought the bike. I alway say I built it. I am going to have to start carrying my cd and sell them from the bike.

I usually ride the bikes at about the same time every day. Since I am retired I ride them on my schedule. Different seasons I ride at different times.

Summer: I try to ride early in the morning before it gets too hot. I usually ride right after the worker bees get off the road. From nine till eleven the traffic is down and it is a pleasure to ride. I try to be off the road at lunch time. The worker bees are rushing around trying to find and devour grease to get through the day.

Then from two till about four the roads are again mostly mine to do with as I wish.

Fall: Nothing much changes but I don't start out till about ten, so I have to rush to get any errands finished before the choke and puke hour. I know that sounds slightly obscene but it wasn't meant to.

winter: In the hardest part of the winter I usually only ride after two pm. I do what I have to do and get back home. What I have to do usually is just ride around looking at the barren trees. I still ride for fun even in the dead of winter. Most days it gets above 35 degrees where I live in the afternoons. That is my limit I won't try to ride under 35 degrees. Even then I look like the pillsbury doughboy.

Spring: is the fall schedule but with anticipation of things to come.

How to dress for the winter ride.. Well it is coming you know....

I wear heavy shoes with socks believe it or not.
I also wear jeans, for some reason my legs don't get really cold.
I do protect my body's core though. I wear a heavy tee shirt... a knit polo type shirt... a turtle neck sweater....a nylon aviator style coat.
I wear a knit ski mask.... a helmet... knit gloves.... I am often mistaken for the guy who just robbed a bank somewhere.
 

jasonh

New Member
Jun 23, 2008
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36
Longmont, CO
Let's see...

Every day I am forced to be on the road by 7:30am....work don't ya know. And I also ride at about 4 or 4:30. Luckily I'm in a smaller city, and I take the semi-residential route. My schedule doesn't get to change for summer or winter or rain or shine.

For summer riding, just jeans and a tee shirt, plus sunglasses for me.

For fall it's now getting to where I wear my jeans and whatever shirt for the day, plus I have a waterproof pullover jacket, a beanie, and some gloves. That's just in the mornings though, in the afternoon it's warmer so I just go with my jeans and shirt. it's only been in the 40's so far in the mornings.

Winter: we'll see. I have no idea what it'll be like riding in 15 degree snowy mornings. I would like to get studded tires for the winter though. I currently have knobby mtb tires, which already aren't ideal.
 

comfortableshoes

New Member
Jul 22, 2008
606
0
0
Beverly, MA USA
I like to ride either early in the AM or later in the afternoon. I avoid the roads during the day the noon time drivers are pretty psycho.

Also Fridays are the pits for riding, traffic is so high its scary. My street is a short cut for people headed to the commuter rail station, so there are a lot of large SUV's speeding down to pick people up... Then if I want to ride later I have to be wary of drunks from the various bar, restaurants and the Italian Community center and Franco American Community Club (Private Bars) Not to mention the college student who are p at house parties.... Friday nights are just not safe for riding.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
It's sunday and I finished the engine switchs by 2pm. So of course when my step daughter and the grandson came, I went for a ride. Solitude is a wonderful fringe benefit of the bicycle life.

I rode the 33cc chainsaw bile. I built that one hoping there would be a difference in the performance of the chainsaw over the 31cc WW. If you are thinking the same, don't bother go right to the 42cc chainsaw if you want to move up. I do like the controls on the chainsaw massacre bike. I has a suicide clutch but also a brake cable feature. Front hand brake and rear coaster make it seem safer than it probably is.

I went about ten miles and some of it in traffic. I wanted to see how it ran without the sandpaper cover that I took off. I think it probably needs more tension now.

By the way I found that a piece of chain (not bicycle chain) Makes an excellent poor man's turnbuckle substitute. I can increase the tension probably in 3/8 inch increments.

I chose some monster hills where I had to pedal. When I absolutely wore out, I stopped pedaling expecting the bike to stall. To my surprise it kept right on climbing very slowly but it did keep going. I'm sure it was skipping like crazy over the tire but it was trying.

Tomorrow I am going to start testing the bike with starting from a stopped position without pedaling. It would be a great help with the suicide clutch even if I could start to pedal after the engine is down. Maybe a little gas on the throttle and ease the clutch down gently.

It's all part of getting used to the bikes. Each one has a personality of it's own. These bikes are true female and not very ladylike. Requiring a lot of attention and even then you have to be inventive to get the best ride from them.
 
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deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
There have been some questions about the 42cc chainsaw bike. I spent the morning riding it. Once I got the clutch thing worked out it rode much better. I think I still need to adjust the tension thing a little differently but it rides pretty darn good.

I climbs hills better and I have not been able to find a long enough flat stretch to go wot so it has plenty left. The only pedaling i really have to do is on right turns I have to pedal to get the speed back up. It sails along pretty good up long inclines better than the 33cc chainsaw. On the short steep ones It does good if you have enough time to build up some speed to let it bleed off. It doesn't really ever stop pulling it just gets slow but not so quickly as the 33cc chainsaw.

My conclusion is that it is some better, but not perfect. I except that for any real improvement you would need to move from friction drive to chain drive. I'm not willing to do that for the small amount of difference. I like my china bike but I don't really need a bike that will do all that just to run to the bank.

For me either of the three bikes will work quite well. For size wieght and safty I think it is the 31cc.... For pure power on the ride, it is the 42cc.... For looking cool the full suspension with the 31cc weed whacker hanging on the front.

If I were going to build again and just one bike, I would build a 42cc chainsaw on a 24" girlie bike. I would replace the crank set and the rear wheel with 20" stuff. Add a front brake and ride the devil out of it.

Now that is only because I know how to build it. If I were telling my brother, who has never built one what to do, it would be the 31cc front mount.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
I have ridden that 42 cc chainsaw bike all morning and it does really good, but I switched off to the ryobi 31 cc weed whacker and I'm telling you that thing is hard to beat. It runs strong and quick. Not as strong as the 42 but just as quick in most applications.

I think I need to drill a hole in the 42cc muffler. It seems to be bogging down as it heats up. Of course I adjusted the tension to tight and probably over heated it. Still only thing it can hurt is my hearing// Eh what?
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
So I had to test the 31cc full suspension bike again. It had a thump in somewhere I ran it and it seemed to get worse so I ran some tests I should have run before. Tests for other things that narrowed down my search. Methodical me don't ya know.

The front tire was a 24" semi knobby. It had a heave big tread pattern but shorter and closer together than a true knobby tire. I had run it for a couple of days and thought maybe it was the problem. So I pulled it and replaced it with a 26" smooth tire. I had always been curious as to what the difference would be.

I am pretty sure the bike climbs better with the smaller wheel it shouldn't but I think it does. The bike seems to run faster with the larger tire but again it should not. The bike does not seem to run any rougher or smoother with the different tire patterns. Given the simi knobby would wear longer, I am inclined to buy those from now on. They are also the cheap ones from bell at kmart.

Well it still thumped so I pulled the rear wheel. Low and behold it was way messed up in the axle parts. Just way too loose. Since I had a spare I didn't even try to fix it. It came from a junker and probably is just worn out. I might take a look if I ever need another one.

So I think the tire thing says go for the deep tread but not the knobby. Size does matter but not too much. I only noticed the lack of hill on the first one before I got up any speed. With a little speed to bleed off it worked just fine.
You can get an idea of the tire tread here
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
So I had to test the 31cc full suspension bike again. It had a thump in somewhere I ran it and it seemed to get worse so I ran some tests I should have run before. Tests for other things that narrowed down my search. Methodical me don't ya know.

The front tire was a 24" semi knobby. It had a heavy big tread pattern but shorter and closer together than a true knobby tire. I had run it for a couple of days and thought maybe it was the problem. So I pulled it and replaced it with a 26" smooth tire. I had always been curious as to what the difference would be.

I am pretty sure the bike climbs better with the smaller wheel it shouldn't but I think it does. The bike seems to run faster with the larger tire but again it should not. The bike does not seem to run any rougher or smoother with the different tire patterns. Given the simi knobby would wear longer, I am inclined to buy those from now on. They are also the cheap ones from bell at kmart.

Well it still thumped so I pulled the rear wheel. Low and behold it was way messed up in the axle parts. Just way too loose. Since I had a spare I didn't even try to fix it. It came from a junker and probably is just worn out. I might take a look if I ever need another one.

So I think the tire thing says go for the deep tread but not the knobby. Size does matter but not too much. I only noticed the lack of hill on the first one before I got up any speed. With a little speed to bleed off it worked just fine.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
The 42cc is on a cruiser bike but the handle bars are bmx. I like the style bars.

The 33 chain saw bike is an old three speed frame.

The front wheel drive is a full suspension mountain bike frame.

The china girl is an older light weight cruiser bike.

All my bikes are cobbled together since you will note on all the diy bikes they have twenty inch wheels which come from bmx, as do the handle bars and crank sets.

So the answer to your question is sorta lol.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
I hate weathermen. Last night I looked at today's forecast. 77 degrees and sunny was the prediction. So I told my wife that I was going to ride to the lake. It isn't that big a deal just four or five miles each way. I wanted to test out the 42cc in a real world situation.

I woke up at 7am it's usually a little dark at that time of the morning now. I looked out the window while I waited for the dogs to eat. It was dry but a little dark. Not a problem I thought I'll give it a while to burn off the slight cloud cover. After all what else could it be.

I put the big dog in her kennel and the little dog found a comfortable spot. I watched a little tv while I waited for the sun to poke through. I had no idea how much garbage is on the cable at eight am. I did watch a couple of political shows. One on msnbc and one of fox. It's the only way to get a fair picture of things.

At nine I decided to heck with it and I went to drag the big bike out of the shop. I struggled with it till it finally gave up an burst free. Once outside I leaned it against the house while I looked at the clouds. They were darker than I expected. There was even a slight breeze that smelled of rain but it couldn't be a rain smell the weather man said clear and warm all day.

I had misgivings but I started the bike anyway. I ran it down to the end of the drive and then turned it onto the main road. I juggled with the controls till the engine engage while I was pedaling along. I turned the corner and got my first look at the northern sky. It was black with rain clouds. I managed to make I around the block with just a couple of drops hitting me. I got the bike put away and thought.

I HATE WEATHERMEN
 
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deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
I made the lake ride in spite of the threatening weather. I found out a few things I'd like to pass along to my diy friends.

42cc is a waste for me. It helps on the hills but doesn't get you up them. The reason is not that the engine lacks the guts, the friction drive won't stay on the wheel. It skips. And I had a knarly bike peg to. At about half throttle on the really big hills it slows to a crawl. Enough so that I can pedal it to help out. Now it is like pedaling on the flat but it is still pedaling.

The bike will run like a sob on the flat and you might be able to open it up and get up the next hill a little better but I frankly don't feel safe going that fast. I mean this mutha will roll on out there. I never did get it wot.

The drive wheel only slips on the hills. If you ease it up, it will go wot and move the bike along on the flats. If someone used it on a chain drive it might do better I don't know but for friction drive it is just overkill.

For me the 33cc chainsaw or the 31cc weed whacker is bike enough. I don't object to pedaling a little. Past that the engine is just overkill in my case. Of course somebody had to try them side by side to know what is going on. I think the 42cc on the big bike will be around a while and I'll ride it but I know it is a waste of power on me.

I will be happy to trade if for two good ryobi 31 engines if anyone is interested.

I have an idea for two engines on a chopper rear wheel one on each side lol. Just kidding.
 
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Spikedfox

New Member
Sep 14, 2008
59
0
0
wow i have to say that offer is tempting as i do have that pressurized clutch peddle idea to allow you to increase the pressure on the wheel, and being a 300lbs guy i could use that power, but all i have is a weed eater, and a 3.5 vertical shaft that both need work lol
 

Egor

New Member
Jan 30, 2008
714
0
0
Hurricane Utah
Deacon - On the VeloSolex 3800 I have, there is nothing to hold the engine down but its own weight. The other thing is that the swing mechanism has resistance, like the bolts through the brackets are too tight. If I take it out of the holding hook, it just stays there I have to push it down on the tire. So the amount of friction I get is what I push on the lever. It is stock I never fooled with it, I feel sorry for the thing I need to get it out of the mess and get it running again. If you need a pic I will see if I can get in there for one. Have fun, Dave

PS: Look at this, does this look like the most fun in the whole world. YouTube - SOLEX MILLENIUM LA RANDONNEE VELOSOLEX DES 60 ANS I have a red one.
 
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deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
Now that is a fun looking group. My front wheel drive is really nice. Since i made those posts I have been thinking I should get me a turn buckle and see if i cant adjust the 42cc's tension. I don't think it will ever be any better than the 33cc but maybe I can get a little more out of it if the tension is better. I think that will be my tomorrow project.
 

comfortableshoes

New Member
Jul 22, 2008
606
0
0
Beverly, MA USA
I think the answer to your woes is.....

JBWeld and sand. Yes. I know, 3 weeks ago I was all about the BMX pegs today I am preaching the gospel of the Weld an sand.

That BMX peg- I think if our using the one I sent you, skipped all over for me too. IT needs more friction. mine skipped a lot esp on hills. I still have to pedal on hills but not as much as when I had it without...

IT will skip a bit but he engine is more liely to stall now, before with both the pegs I used the engine would skip if I stopped and keep running, even with fairly tight pressure, now if I slow down too much the engine stalls because it can't spin fast enough.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
thanks for the info I am using your ped and it does skip on hills. I hate to use jb and sand I have never had any luck with that but I might try the JB in horizontal stripes. See if I can get it to go bump in the night lol.

I'm glad you reminded about the roller skipping for you. It makes sense. Maybe I can salvage the 42cc after all. I thought once that it was the better of my bikes. Maybe I can tinker with the drive and get back to that.

I still love the front wheel drive ryobi.

Next build Shoes you should do a front wheel, just to see if there is any difference.
 

deacon

minor bike philosopher
Jan 15, 2008
8,117
3
0
north carolina
I took the 31cc front wheel drive for a ride this morning. That is one fine bike if I do say so myself. With that sandpaper wheel it just rolled on up the hills on my long tougher test track. On almost every other bike (except the china) I have to pedal to get up the last big hill. Not on this bike today. If I can somehow get that same performance from the other two diy bikes I will be thrilled. They each have a little more umph than the 31cc. At least they should have.

The weather turned cool today so I rode in a sweat shirt. Looks like it is going to be mid day for rides starting soon. I would like to get these bikes all tested and the wheels finalized before cold weather.
 
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comfortableshoes

New Member
Jul 22, 2008
606
0
0
Beverly, MA USA
I've been thinking of motorizing the mountain bike I've got, so a front drive would work well for that, but then I really don't like the smoke in my face, and I think I'm going to use the homelite for it and do a jack shaft with a gear on the tire, I'm not sure if I'm going to center mount it or if I'm going to rack mount it. I've got some ideas....

that 31cc ryobi is fantastic. I couldn't believe that last long ride I had the other day- what a ride that was. it pulled me up all but the steepest hills.

now if I could just shake this darn cold I'd be a lot happier. (I get one a year and it's usually long lasting and nasty.)