Burley Recumbent W/ GEBE Tanaka 3300

Discussion in 'Motorized Recumbents' started by Hive, Jun 18, 2007.

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  1. Hive

    Hive Guest


    Bike is Burley Sand Point, same frame as Koosah: Bought with custom paint.

    Used GEBE drive kit that was installed on CNC, plus new T-33. Made new engine support bar from aluminum stock and used same material for TREK grocery bag frame along drive side of bike.

    The side-bracket and engine anchor bar were bent using two bench vises and large Crescent wrench. Used 5mm stock hex head ss screws and tapped inside frame etc. GEBE metal bars would have worked, but I sent the new ones to gent who bought kit.

    The kill switch is under seat on left and located to reduce clutter up front. This has a two-wire ground. One side is always grounded other is for running. I switch as a minimal theft deterrent.

    Had to assemble longer throttle cable from GEBE (112") plus add on 8.5 inch rear axle (9" may be better choice, if they will make one - GEBE) and new 36-spoke laced wheel from GEBE also. Order axle with wheel. Outstanding service, BTW.

    Rear tire is now a Specialized Armadillo, which I had acquired for TREK CNC, but did not use. I may yet go to larger tire, but will give this one a shot for the time being.


    The longer axle permits engine mount to sit on axle and not to hit frame (or disk brake sets on other bikes if you are thinking about it.) Use one 10mm nut for wheel and second nut on outside for engine and then lock all, with appropriate washers etc.

    I might add that I replaced the inefficient clips that come with throttle cables and kill buttons with ss hose clamps for firmer anchor.

    NOTE WELL: If you use engine in vertical position as above, change the fuel intake tube to longer version, as factory tubes don't reach bottom of tank and you will run out of fuel - not good for 2-cycles - and not use the bottom 25% of fuel, etc.

    edited so pics were under each other so no scrolling side-to-side

  2. azbill

    azbill Active Member

    looks like a comfy ride !!!
    well done Hive
  3. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member

    There are so many excellent things about this ride, the tire AND:

    BOTH THUMBS UP !! :cool:
  4. azbill

    azbill Active Member

    I just noticed...that's pretty trippy the way chain runs, doesn't it touch when it crosses itself like that? :shock:
  5. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member

    From the high school physics memories, aren't two pulleys better than one?

    Top speed/in a safe assured manner, THAT is what I'm listening for.

    *edit what I meant, hive (below) was that the second gear is what makes the recumbent more efficient to pedal
  6. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member

    Oh, and Dennis told me some aviation guys in Michigan were adding windshields to recumbents, claiming 300 miles per gallon.
  7. Hive

    Hive Guest

    bamabikeguy, a ?

    Two pulley's ... ?

    I figure if it works, and you do not abuse it, you are doing good!

    Or, did I miss ...?

    Chain is controlled by a sheave that splits angles - it has another name and I cannot recall it.
  8. beast775

    beast775 Guest

    good work

    ok im gonna have to take out a recumbant at the shop,its eating me up!ive never rode one.and now i gotta.
  9. Torques

    Torques Guest

    Excuse me, but that is fricking COOL!! :shock:
  10. Butch

    Butch Guest

    Nice ride. Looks very comfortable.
  11. Torques

    Torques Guest

  12. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member


    I sold my first recumbent, using a 25 Zenoah, waiting for clarification on the model.

    Sure do appreciate all the information, if it is okay by you, I'll post the build in this thread, so a guest can compare.

    I also sold my first tandem, a Drifter 7 speed using a 33Tanaka, will post it in a seperate thread.
  13. Hive

    Hive Guest

    Adding comparisons

    By all means, run the thread as far as you like. It will help.

    I am about to add a couple goodies I learned in the process of tweaking this ride.
  14. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member

    Great, thanks 8)

    First point of clarification: your rear wheel looks to be a 26". The Sun EZ-3 this customer first chose had 2 - 20's on the rear and a 16" on the front.

    What is the size of your front wheel? and does Burley have a 24" front on any of their models.

    Better yet, could you post Burley's link?

    Here's Suns:


    My customer is doing the research, he looked at lightfootcycles, thought them a bit pricey. Here's Lightfoots site:


    This thread could be the gospel of recumbents when we finish! 8) 8), to help folks avoid the whole misunderstanding of frames and the spokerings.
  15. Hive

    Hive Guest


    Burley halted production for couple years.

    The rear wheel is from GEBE, 26" x 36 spokes; original only had 32 spokes,

    The fasteners on this recumbent are all the same.

    To secure the support bar I used standard 5mm SS bolts used to attach beverage cages to frame supports.

    Where the fender or structural support bar (below seat, B-tween post and drop-out end, attaches to frame and is attached to the grocery bag side support, they are fixed with self locking SS nuts.

    The others are drilled and tapped on the the inside and simply tightened, to keep that installation simple, as you can see the outer holes were redone a couple of times to adjust to other contingencies as I fabricated as I worked. If you do not wish to drill and tap, use bolts and nuts; end result will be same.
  16. Hive

    Hive Guest


    AS I mentioned before, Burley stopped making these bents at least for a while, so their web site is void of recumbent info. If you phish around the WWW using "Burley recumbent" you will find specs and pics from those who have one or dealers who are still selling them.

    You might also try The Hostel Shoppe, in Stevens Point, WI or Calhoun Bikes in Mpls.

    I purchased my Burley in complete ignorance.

    Did not even know the bike had custom paint etc. I made sure the ring would fit and decided the longer axle would be needed to get engine mount to work out side of frame. Found out stuff later.

    BTW, anyone who has bike with disk brakes, the long axle, 8.5 to 9" is a must, so the GEBE support can be bolted on securely clear of frame and brake mounts, and angled more upright - looks better, runs better, reduces fuel problems as well. Better too long ...

    GEBE makes them up to 8.5" but might do one at 9". Not all that difficult if you can thread a bar and so on.

    On making longer cables longer than 100" might be something you will have to do your self. I have extra trigger throttle, but forgot where I bought it. See thread on "throttle cables." And I intend to change to New Dimension type throttle.

    Rear wheels are all 26" and fronts are all 20" as far as I know, and there is about 1/8 to 1/4 quarter clearance for drive ring at fork.

    Recumbents are a bit spendy. (I do know (now) where they is a very nice Bacchetta Agia available from Lubbock TX, for about $900 with shipping and two sets of handle bars. It will need longer axle, and as I recall, there is enough room at fork for drive ring.) Best to search local shops first, however. You will be surprised as I was to find one in small town.

    Spendy Crank Forward (CF) Rans bikes seem the best compromise, like the one with front suspension.

    Back to Burley: You will need a long 8.5 to 9 inch rear axle and 36 spoke wheel (order from GEBE or lace your own). They will send a 24 spoke ring but prefer not to do so. I suppose, if you are not a heavy engine user, the 24 will be fine.

    Also, my bent needed a 112" throttle cable. I assembled my own from components from a 120" cable assy and it works like a charm.

    It is simple matter to use braided wire cutter to adjust length and cut off the casing as needed for proper movement. Fixing the new end can be as simple as heating and compressing a lead sinker or steel tube on wire and sanding to fit engine slot.

    If anyone has better/easier way, post it below for all to use.
  17. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member

    I am lucky that my bike dealer is also a Snapper supplier, so rather than waiting for GEBE to send the longer cable, I'll just let The Peddler do it, once I have the measurement of the Tandem frame.

    I don't trust website pictures, when they assemble my Tandem, I'll carry the engine and mount with me, and we will have it correct in the first try.

    Might cost $10 more, but when it's done it's done. :grin:

    Since this is my first Tandem, when I finish I'll be able to post the length here on MB.com, for others to use as a guide. Same as your recumbent throttle cable being a starting point.

    What would you suggest as being the MAXIMUM throttle cable slackage?

    For instance, no way would I go UNDER 106" using your guide, but don't you think a person could make 112"-115" work?
  18. Hive

    Hive Guest

    I really do not have an


    I hook the cable up and begin to nibble the casing until it locks well and moves just a bit over max. It is a pain, but works for me, beers help.

    As to length. Don't know...If it is smooth and does not lock up, it is fine. I guess you can built them to any length, as the longer ones get thicker anyway...if the diameter is larger than the engine retainer slot, I flatten and add lead etc.
  19. Hive

    Hive Guest


    Is a joy to ride. The steering is quick and will take a bit of time, but the ride is slick, to say the least.

    The Tanaka 3300 engine is outstanding in power, though a bit noisy, but not that bad. It is way more motor than the Honda GX25 on the hill, but on the flats, not all that different, save the noise. Highly recommend it for its low weight to power, even though I abhor mixing gas and oil, it is worth it. Still, if you have no large grade to traverse, the Honda or Robin 25s will serve you well and are more quiet.

    Will advise on muffler set-up, if I get that far. Exhaust is about 1' from my right ear.

    Only bike I can imagine that would be as fun to ride might be one of the CF (crank forward) machines from RANS, though I honestly believe few bikes would be as comfortable as reclining on a bent, however. The RANS would be more maneuverable, no doubt, so one has to make a choice there; they are also new and expensive, while used bents are all over.

    If a bent is in your future, suggest one like the Bacchetta Agio or something similar to what I now run.

    I know the Sun LWB (long wheel base) bents are very compatible with GEBE systems. LWB bents are comfortable, indeed.

    I would not put a motor on a SWB bent or what are called "high racers" as they might be a bit scary and too quick.

    Fun stuff, however you do it.
  20. Alaskavan

    Alaskavan Guest

    Long chain

    I may be wrong, but I believe the chain on a LWB recumbent is so long that there's a lot of play to move the return portion out of the way of the tensioned portion.