From Michigan, and very new.

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by Evan G., May 20, 2016.

  1. Evan G.

    Evan G. New Member

    Hello, my name is Evan and I'm from the fiery fields of Mid-Michigan (soon to move back to the UP hopefully!). Annnnnyways. I've been wanting to build a Café Racer lately, but I feel like around here, I'd just be wasting gas, and I like the look of Board Trackers most out of any sort of bike anyways.... I just had NO idea until literally last night that people were reproducing bikes like that... I had never thought to search. Nowadays, nobody really thinks about motorized bikes.... anyways... long story short: I have been searching around like a maniac trying to build mine and here are some things I'm looking for help with if anybody knows:

    1) I REALLY like the look of the basic Sportsman Flyer bike. But, at 500 bucks, I'm wondering if I could find something competitive with that styling for cheaper?

    2) How reliable are the Harbor Freight motors I keep hearing about? I am a long time traveler/street musician/beach bum type (for nearly all of my adult life until recently...and I'm 32..) and I still tend to drift around a lot... so it's important to me that the motor I get have longevity and readily available parts all around the country... especially in Michigans UP where parts can be hard to source sometimes.

    3) What are a few of the industry standard frames that are known to be easy to work with and have reasonable prices?

    4) Since I camp a lot and plan to use this bike on trails sometimes, etc... I am wondering how difficult it would be to wire up some kind of battery system so I could charge a phone or a laptop etc... how much that would cost... etc...

    5) Has anybody used one of the snow bike conversions in the Winter in deep snow?

    I plan to be a long time member here... cause once I found out about these bikes it was like a light went off. From my MANY homeless/travelling/musical years, I've come to LOVE straightforward and simple things... so the thought of 140 - 150 miles per gallon, cheap repairs, etc... just appeals to me like no other.

    What kinda top speed would I be looking at out of a 80cc HF motor verse the 216cc or whatever...

    Also... if anybody in Michigan is around the Ann Arbor/Brighton/Howell area, hit me up! I'm dying to check out one of these bikes up close... especially if it's a Board Tracker...

    Thanks for reading my scatterbrained intro! haha

  2. jaguar

    jaguar Well-Known Member

    a 216cc will put out more power than an "80cc" (which really is a 69cc) and will be more reliable since the Chinese two strokes lack reliability
  3. bluegoatwoods

    bluegoatwoods Well-Known Member

    Welcome aboard from a former Michigander. My home state. And 35 years ago I was hanging out in places like Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti.

    And I was a bit of a rolling stone, too. And that's kinda on-topic, for that matter. You see, these bikes need a lot of tinkering. That can be a problem if you've got no permanent base. You could find yourself working on your bike a lot in some place where you really don't want to spend a bunch of time. As opposed to moving on to your destination.

    That's not to say that it can't be done cheaply. But be prepared to suffer through the learning curve. The time it takes to get to know your particular bike. It will pin you down on one spot for a while. And unless you're luckier than most, it'll happen more than once.

    Or you could put a couple thousand bucks into a bike, or a Honda scooter for instance, that'll be reliable enough to keep you moving. An actual Sportsman Flyer complete bike would fit that description.

    If you go, say, the five hundred dollar route you actually will be glad you did. Because it is fun and it is interesting. But there will be times when your bike is holding you back.

    Best of luck and have fun.