Your build on a $1000 budget?

Discussion in 'Motorized Bicycle General Discussion' started by Rezso, Nov 15, 2013.

  1. Rezso

    Rezso New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2013
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Within the month I will have $1000 to build with from the sell of my wrecked truck. I wasn't sure what forum to stick this in because I'm not sure exactly what i want to build.

    Basically, I want the best pedal-based motorized transport I can build for $1000. This will be my only mode of transport for the foreseeable future. Due to my limited budget it seems a gas engine would be best, but I am not ruling out electric if I can afford it.

    I'm not sure if I should build a bicycle, trike/recumbent or a velomobile. I think velomobile's interest me the most due to shielding from the elements, etc...but only if my budget will allow for a good one.

    If you have any build advice, a few other things to consider: I have access to a welder and a person skilled in that art; I do not mind buying a nice stock bike and building on it, or building a bike or 3-wheeled vehicle from old bike frames and used parts; I want to have a nice, smooth ride and plan to use the NuVinci hub or something else that will be a more affordable performance boost.

    Any advice or links is greatly appreciated and I would love to see what more experienced people here would build on my budget for the best performance and comfort.
     
  2. BarelyAWake

    BarelyAWake New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2009
    Messages:
    7,209
    Likes Received:
    5
    Two of my builds that cost about exactly that much...

    I think it's groovy looking & it's pretty comfortable for a two stroke, it goes like heck but does always need a bit of tinkering - a '43 Rollfast, in-frame kit, shiftkit through a 3sp SA ISH & drum brakes;

    [​IMG]


    Not nearly as pretty as the above it was only supposed to be a temporary test bike, but after over six thousand miles later of year-round daily rider & beater use I've grudgingly realized it's without a doubt the most reliable transport I've ever had - a 2011 Mongoose Snarl, 48v 1000w 'Magic Pie' ehub, 15ah LiFePO4 battery pack;

    [​IMG]


    What's "best" only the rider can decide ofc, which tool is right for the job you've in mind only you can call... If it's practical transport within a thirty mile range the electrics (hub kits) require little build time and no maintenance, they're pretty much literally plug & play whereas the fabricated bikes are a lot more fun, but aren't necessarily as "efficient" as strictly transport, there's always something more to do ;)

    I've a trike/recumbent & I love it - but it's not inexpensive (recumbent bits just aren't) and it's a bit unwieldy in no-shoulder traffic... while you could build a motorized recumbent trike for under a grand I find I use the ebike for just about everything except the cross country jaunts & camping trips as it's just easier - a 2013 fabricated fully suspended hybrid (49cc four stroke/electric hub) tadpole recumbent... not $1000 but there's potential in a DIY taddy lol;

    [​IMG]
     
  3. Intrepid Wheelwoman

    Intrepid Wheelwoman New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2011
    Messages:
    2,831
    Likes Received:
    1
    $US1000.00!! - that's a fortune :eek:

    For me that's the sort of budget I dream about Rezso. Then I tend to use high levels of reclaimed and recycled materials in my builds with the actual engine kit itself being the main expense.
    Building my Hercules tricycle was the only time I really pushed the boat out and spent money and that was $NZ250.00 for a 250watt motorwheel kit, $NZ200.00 for a secondhand near new condition Indian made Hercules heavyweight bicycle and $NZ150.00 for a tricycle axle kit. All the other parts for the build were drawn from my pile of bike parts most of which came from the council tip.

    My present faux Rudge autocycle is also going to be a cheap build. The 66cc/80cc gen II China Girl kit cost me just over $NZ200.00. One tatty old but complete 1950's gents Rudge sports bicycle $NZ100.00. Two NOS mudguards at $NZ20.00 each. One Mixte frame free from the council tip and the rest as usual is all reclaimed bits and pieces that also cost me nothing.
    It looks like buying repop Rudge transfers/decals and a repop 'Brooks' saddle badge from England will cost me about what I paid for the whole Rudge gents bicycle, but that's Ok because I want my bike to look nice.

    Some forum members have spent thousands of dollars on their bike builds, - which is fine, - but really the final build cost will come down to how much you want to do yourself, how much free material you can find and the actual build spec that you want to work to.
     
  4. curtisfox

    curtisfox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2008
    Messages:
    4,182
    Likes Received:
    71
    Sounds to me like you should build what you need and sve the wants for later. I would do a 4stroke with a CVT good worksman or husky wheels. Read some of the DIY's or board trackers and find a frame that would work. ......Good luck on the choice..........Curt
     
  5. motorstumpy

    motorstumpy New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2013
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have always wanted to use a engine from a Honda xr50... Haven't b/c of expense
     
  6. racie35

    racie35 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2012
    Messages:
    1,700
    Likes Received:
    1
    I'd just buy a low miles used whizzer.......theyre everywhere
     
  7. MotorBicycleRacing

    MotorBicycleRacing Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2010
    Messages:
    5,701
    Likes Received:
    34
    Lifan clone motors are available for about $200
     
  8. Scott.D.Lang

    Scott.D.Lang Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2013
    Messages:
    406
    Likes Received:
    0
    you have 1k and welding skills so what you can build at that price is up to you for the most part. myself I like 2 strokes and if I had a welder and the skills Id build a bike with this https://www.treatland.tv/franco-mor...start-eng-p/franco-morini-complete-engine.htm but it is a motor that should be very dependable and have more power then most people would ever need on a bicycle. but even though I like 2 strokes for my own reasons if I was not someone that likes to tinker with motors Id start with a 4 stroke but even that leaves you with many many options from motor to type of clutch.

    all that said best advice I can give is build what you will be happy with.
     
  9. bairdco

    bairdco a guy who makes cool bikes

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2009
    Messages:
    6,375
    Likes Received:
    36
    if you're gonna go the 2 wheeled route, a great way to keep costs down is to start with an older american bike. scour craigslist and ebay, swapmeets, garage sales, etc.

    i've never spent 1000 on a complete build. usually half that at most.

    i've built quality bikes for a lot less than most people spend on a new walmart build.

    money saving tips:

    build your own wheels. you can drill out almost any rim and hub to take bigger spokes, or find a used set from an older heavy duty american bike. a lot of them had 12g spokes in the 70's.

    find a cheap powder coater for paint. i've got a guy here that will strip and powder a frame and fork for 80 bucks. that's cheaper than all the paint strippers, sandpaper, spray paint, etc that you'll need to do a bike right. plus it saves a heckovva lotta time and work.

    build it right the first time.

    cheap parts will wear out and break. if you think you're saving money on a cheap set of wheels you'll spend more in the long run to replace them.

    if you're not running a jackshaft through the nuvinci hub, forget about it. you don't need gears if you ain't pedaling.

    since you have the welder, you can make your own mounts, reinforce stuff and make pipes, tanks, etc.

    whatever motor you decide on, none of them are indestructable. china 2 strokes are cheap for a reason. sometimes you get lucky and get one that'll go thousands of miles with little problem, others fail right out of the box.

    there's a wealth of info in this forum. keep reading and you'll find what you want...
     
  10. Scott.D.Lang

    Scott.D.Lang Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2013
    Messages:
    406
    Likes Received:
    0
    Amen to that you are so right .shft.
     
  11. truckd

    truckd Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 19, 2010
    Messages:
    2,775
    Likes Received:
    6
    Here is my $1,200.oo Build Ol' Blue
     

    Attached Files:

  12. Rezso

    Rezso New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2013
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Yeah, but it will be my only mode of transport...so if you think about it being a $1000 car, it is kind of the opposite of a fortune. :p
     
  13. Rezso

    Rezso New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2013
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    That's sick. Do you have a list of parts or something on the forums here from when you were building it?
     
  14. Rezso

    Rezso New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2013
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    I thought that a 4 stroke engine turned a 'bicycle' into a moped or motorcycle. Is that incorrect?
     
  15. Rezso

    Rezso New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2013
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    That is seriously one of the most gorgeous builds I have seen so far.
     
  16. Rezso

    Rezso New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2013
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Awesome info, thanks. I'm just trying to get as much advice before I buy anything as I can. I appreciate all of the help and you are absolutely correct about these forums being a wealth of knowledge. I could not agree more.
     
  17. curtisfox

    curtisfox Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2008
    Messages:
    4,182
    Likes Received:
    71
    Not sure what your laws are but mopeds are both 2 and 4 stroke. Here its 50cc max and needs pedals,and gross 2 hp max.

    Now that depends on the local poilice if they are striket or not, or how fast you go, here its 20 mph.

    If you run a small 79,or 99cc they will prolly won't know the difference,unless you are doing out of the limits on the restricions.

    Good luck on your choice.........Curt
     
  18. KCvale

    KCvale Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2010
    Messages:
    3,942
    Likes Received:
    29
    You can build a lot of bike for $1K in parts but for simple and reliable you can do a build like this for ~$600.

    [​IMG]

    49cc HS 142F 4-stroke engine and Grubee 4G transfer case ~$350 at http://gasbike.net

    29" Macargi Fatal Love steel frame beach cruiser ~$240.
    I get mine local but they can be found on-line.
    Note you will need to put a front brake on it.

    It's a little slow off the line but winds out over 30MPH, legal most anywhere, and pretty easy to build.

    The thing is allot depends on your stature and travel needs...
    If you are smallish like under 160 pounds and less than a 28" inseam that big bike will be too much bike for you, go with a little 2-stroke and smallish bike like this 48 or 66cc 2-stroke on a Macargi Touch for like $350.

    [​IMG]

    Options abound everywhere in between for bike and engine choice including making an electric shifter which is one of my favorite ways to build but not cheap due to good battery choices.

    Depending on the bike price you can do a fairly small battery electric build like this for under $1000.
    If memory serves I paid $300 for the Caddy NuVinci shifter bike and $600 for electric system.

    [​IMG]

    Or of course you can go BIG power like this 7-speed electric shifter build I just finished yesterday that will flat blow you away for ~$1000.

    [​IMG]

    Gears change everything in drive train, especially on an electric but adds a hundred or two, not very easy to get right and there is more maintenance involved but no kidding that electric goes from 0 to 20 in like 2 seconds from a dead stop in 3rd gear and when you rev out the motor you just jump to 6th and can hit 35MPH in about 6 seconds.

    No clue what this new build tops out at but like I said, it blew us away ;-}


    I suggest you just go to a REAL bicycle store and test ride some bikes with a nice center cavity to find what fits you best and you enjoy just pedaling, then pick what power plant and drive to use that will fit it because well, if you are not comfortable on the bike just pedaling you'll hate it with motor power.
     
    #18 KCvale, Nov 16, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2013
  19. CTripps

    CTripps Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2011
    Messages:
    1,311
    Likes Received:
    0
    You have a nice budget to build with.. I can't recall the last time my bank account had that much in it, lol. Of the four I've built so far, the 5-Star cruiser is the most expensive at around $400-$450 invested.. ($150 for the motor; another $100 in the carb, exp. chamber, and misc hardware etc.; $125 for the bike from CL; plus my time spent on the motor clean-up, install, and tinkering to get it all the way I want it; a few cans of spray paint etc).

    Decide on what bike you're going to use as a base. Since it's going to be your primary transportation, make sure it's comfortable and that it fits you right. Be sure to consider cargo capacity (carriers etc) because you will need it sooner or later (if nothing else then just to carry your lock(s), rain gear, and tool kit). You can buy from yard sales, CL, or even new for that budget.

    Study up a bit around here for the motor. Myself, I've only worked with two stroke China Girls so far but I have read good things regarding some of the four strokes out there, especially in terms of reliability. That'll be a big factor for you in your 'main transportation'.
     
  20. crassius

    crassius Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2012
    Messages:
    3,656
    Likes Received:
    70
    on a fixed budget, I'd be somewhat conservative in getting dependability

    two cheap. used bikes, two HT kits = $500

    have two running to be sure of getting there & $500 left for repair parts
     

Share This Page