Building a motorized bike?

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I posted a few days ago about using a bike to get to work to save on
gas. I live about 20 miles away. I have a place I can park my truck and
ride from their. It is 14 miles away.
I rode this weekend my Wal Mart trail bike. It too roughly 24 minutes
to go 4.6 miles and that included time it took to fix my chain that
came off when shifting.
Always wanted to toy with the idea of adding a motor to my bike. I have
seen those ones with rollers that drive the wheel but I would think it
would wear the tire down with regular use. A better way to go seems
like a chain and sprocket but then I would not be able to pedal if the
motor quit working or I just wanted to use it as a regular bicycle,
right?
All of this 20 miles is open roads, no stopping bacially highway
driving. (Not in a city).
I have a 3 horsepower Briggs and stratton at home that I thought of
playing with but I am guessing it would be too heavy. (??) I bet it
would fly though.
Any advice?
Reply to
stryped
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Buy or restore an old Honda S90. They are trivially easy to keep running, the parts are still relatively easy to find and they'll do 45 mph getting 170 mpg.
Reply to
Jim Stewart
Not too surprising. With more time spent in the saddle, the speed will improve, but you're probably going to want to start looking for a more reliable bike before you start real commutes. (Meanwhile, go over the current unit to get the adjustments as close to right as they can be made.)
Back in the '60s, at the height of the first minibike craze, kids in my neighborhood tried many ways of making this work. The bottom line is that while it's possible, what you have at the end of the process isn't really a bike anymore. It's heavy, it shakes, it uses fuel and gets hot, and eventually the stress and vibration tends to crack the frame if you use a Briggs or Teke (or similar unbalanced) one-lung mill for the powerplant. If what you really want is a low-power motorcycle, buy one; be prepared for the sticker shock when you go to get the insurance coverage for it, though.
Your current bike may be making the task of riding to work seem harder than it should be; cheap bikes tend to have that result, though not always. Making the mods already recommended should improve the outlook, but the main thing that you'll need to do is get some miles in so that you're building up your own resources to the level required for the task. Once that's achieved, the 20 miles will fly by.
Reply to
Werehatrack
I had a motorized bike in Russia, in the attic, but never rode it, it had a motor that would drive the actual bicycle chain. I never rode it.
These sorts of things, if well made, offer great efficiency.
Also, try looking for used light bikes at garage sales. Good bicycles sell for next to nothing. Those cheap Walmart bicycles are very painful to ride due to their weight, gear issues, etc.
I had a Walmart bike, which I hated. Now I have a very light bicycle that I bought for $2 at a garage sale, that is very easy to ride and has a much better speed selector.
i
Reply to
Ignoramus11316
I have to agree with the other reply of building something. If it does work out, it wont be a bike any longer. It will be heavy and probably unreliable. If you feel the need for some assistance they do make electric bikes. Try google. I think you should stay with the idea of the bicycle though. It will be sort of tough for a bit, but once you get the bike adjusted properly and get your body in better shape it will be easier.
Ken
Reply to
Ken C. M.
Why give up on the bicycle? Slick tires will make a huge difference. Adjusting your drivetrain so that the chain does not fall off will also help out. The other thing to keep in mind is that the more you ride, the fitter you will be. So you can cut your commute down a fair amount. --------------- Alex
Reply to
Alex Rodriguez
It would take a lot of work to modify a bike to accept a Briggs engine, and when you're all through it would be a really lousy bike to peddle. Best bet (and cheapest) is to use one of the Chinese bike engine kits that you can find on eBay or other internet sites for under $200. Here are three examples that I have used, though there are several others.
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I ride commute 28 miles per day on my motorbike. No registration, no insurance, no hassle. I also have motorcycles but really enjoy the motorbike. Be sure to check the laws in your state.
Q
stryped wrote:
Reply to
Q
Not only would it be hard to sell, it would also be hard to pedal.
Reply to
Ted Bennett
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How do I pr> > >
Reply to
stryped
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Ken
Reply to
Ken C. M.
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Can I really expect one of those chineese engines to last a long time going 40 miles/day with alot of Hills? Do they pedal as easy with the motor off as it would with no motor at all? (Is it harder to pedal with the motor and chain hiiked up?)
Reply to
stryped
rumors of asian civilizations producing two wheel motorized vehicles...
Reply to
datakoll
Couldn't have said it better myself...so I didn't.
Reply to
Hank Wirtz
Unsubstantiated claims that they were invented in the local vicinity, by several widely distributed voices...
Reply to
Werehatrack
Several thousand miles is certainly not out of the question. This might be a short time, or it might not.
The mere presence of the weight will add to the effort of pedalling, so that's a solid "no" even if the declutching mechanism is very good.
As noted, you're carrying around extra weight at the very least.
Reply to
Werehatrack
Not sure what you mean there. I used to pay $140/yr for liability insurance on my Suzuki GSX1100G back in Texas. Now in Washington, I pay nothing (because WA does not require liability insurance on motorcycles).
Very few of the "career cyclists" I know, myself included, can cover that sort of distance in an hour. Make it 1.5 hours, and make it your commute, and you're spending 3 hours a day en route. Dunno about you, but that's not a satisfactory use of my waking hours. If I spend more than one hour each way to and from work, I'm doing something wrong.
Chalo
Reply to
Chalo
Any of those 4-strokes?
Look up buzzing.org for reams of info on motors for bicycles.
Q wrote:
Reply to
Jordan
I have no idea how long they'll last but being a long time motorcycle mechanic I would guess they'll go at least 10,000 miles, then parts are really cheap. I've heard of people with several thousand miles on them but I've only got about 600 miles on the one I'm riding now. There are millions of them in use in China.
There is some drag when peddling but not a lot. With the engine disengaged you are turning the chain, and a shaft with 2 ball bearings. The great thing is that to disengage the engine you just pull a lever, like a latching bike brake lever, and you can do it on the fly. So... you can peddle for a few minutes, motor for a few, peddle for a few, etc..
Q
stryped wrote:
Reply to
Q
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check these out, stryped...
Reply to
ko57
There is a lot of good advice here so far. Here is the best:
Buy a cheap dirt bike. You will be farther ahead than trying to cobble something together on a WalMart bike.
Buy a good brand name bike if you want to pedal.
And I hope you will take no offense to this...but a WalMart bike is the Yugo of the bike world. It is not built for a 20 mile ride. Get a good brand name bike for those distances (stay away from Schwinn). Gary Fisher, Trek, Giant, Cannondale are all good names.
I ride 6 miles one way to work just about every day. I usually skip when it is raining really hard, cold temps, (I drew the line at -11 this winter), or if we got 8" of snow and the plows haven't gotten out yet.
Mike
Reply to
mj

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