First Time Ever

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by UTurn, Oct 14, 2010.

  1. UTurn

    UTurn New Member

    Hello All,

    I am new to any Forum of any kind. That being said I'm not sure what kind of intro write so I'll just run with it... For reasons I won't go into, I don't drive anymore. A couple years ago I asked my Brother and my Nephew, both Street-rod Hobbyists, to help me design a motor for a bicycle. They laughed it off as foolish I think, because it went no further. A year later, and quite tired of walking, I figured that if I had that idea, someone else must have too, so I looked up "Bicycle Motors" and to my surprise there was a whole world of Motored Biking. WOW, FAR OUT, and COOL!

    A friend had given me an old, messed up, home painted Schwinn. About then my knowledge of bikes stopped back in my preteens with my Stingray with a banana seat and a sissy bar, I think the late 60's. Anyway, I bow to the internet for it's base of knowledge. :bowdown:

    I made a quick decision and bought an 80cc Skyhawk. That was my first Build and I was so proud of it. The guy who gave me the bike said "That's the Sickest thing I've ever seen." I was living in Spokane at the time and you just didn't see such a thing there. That was only just over a year ago and I'll say I've come a long way in a year. My Plan was to ride the bike from Spokane Washington to Florida. Well, there were too many problems that prevented me from leaving and then Winter hit. I left the bike there, shipped the motor, and flew to Florida instead (trip just postponed).

    I acquired a much nicer Timberline GT, my Second Build sort of and added some extras. Of the bikes I see on display on the net, they all look like show bikes. Mine is more makeshift but it works for me. I added a speedometer, and a rear view mirror and saddle bags. Next came a bullet headlight, brake lights, tail lights, turn signals, and all powered by a very small motorcycle battery mounted on the rear rack. Later I discovered a very fine company called "Sick Bike Parts". With their 2 stroke shift kit I was able to shift gears which I thought was Great. Had a lot of problems with the 2 stroke breakdowns, slipping clutch, tangled chains, and much more.

    Finally I decided to chuck the 2 stroke and get a 4 stroke motor for which I'll refer to as my Third Build. I now have 25 miles of problem free riding. The fine people at SBP sold me just the parts I needed to switch the 2 stroke shift kit to the 4 stroke kit. This should be delivered tomorrow. These Guys at SBP were extremely helpful and reasonable with the sale. That's just my experience, not a spam :).

    Well, that's my story and I'm stickin' to it! I still plan to take a trip across country with the bike, just not today. Much more to do first.

    Attached Files:

  2. ibdennyak

    ibdennyak Guest

    Doesn't look makeshift to me. Like the signals and trailer especially. You want makeshift, I can show you a few things. :whistling:

    And welcome to the forum.....we have a little of everything here.
  3. UTurn

    UTurn New Member

    Yeah, the trailer... Someone once told me that you can't weld aluminum at home... There are 7 nuts & bolts on this, the rest is all welded. Guess I showed him! Thanks for the compliment.
  4. hurricane

    hurricane Member

    That someone, was never a welder ! I do my best aluminum welding at home. lol

    Very nice clean builds, love your light/blinker set ups. you did good on the builds and that trailer is cool also, mind getting a close up on how you connected it to the bike?
  5. UTurn

    UTurn New Member

    Sure, I'll post some close-ups of the trailer project this evening.
  6. RedBaronX

    RedBaronX Member

    what are you using for brake lights and turn signals? I've got a strong headlight (just bought a better/rechargeable battery for it) but I want working brake lights and signals because my bike is for commuting (as well as lookin' cool).

    My bike is deceptively "custom"... you can get a lot of "custom look" mileage out of a well chosen bicycle!
  7. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    I also love the lights.....could you start or add to a thread in the electricle section? I am interested in your setup.
    I love the trailer also....but alas I do not weld......electricity and I have an agreement, or should I say we have restraining orders against each other.
  8. UTurn

    UTurn New Member

    RedBaronX, My tail/brake light was just a cheap 6 dollar auto parts store light. I welded up a bracket for it. The turn signals were off a honda motorcycle I think. I fabricated a bracket for those too. You are probably more interested in the switch. You would not want to copy what I'm using right now, it's "Farmer Jones makeshift". However, I'm working on a new design that uses a spring loaded, normally closed, push button switch. The idea is to modify the brake lever some. On the lever body I will mount the switch, on the lever I will mount a short rod that will enguage the switch while in normal use, and release the switch when the brakes are applied. This will apply power to the lights when I pull on the handle. I use a duel break lever by the way. Also the mod requires a little aluminum welding or rather soldering sort of.

    For the rest of the lights I have plans for that too. All in good time. I am tired of charging my battery every time I take a trip out, so I'm loading the headlight bucket with superbright LED's and same for the other lights. You can run a very long time on LED's as apposed to the incandesant lights.

    Before I can do that I need to research the correct resistors to use and how many bulbs can go on one resister. Anyway, I'll keep posting as I go. There might be something usefull in there eventually.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2010
  9. RedBaronX

    RedBaronX Member

    you are correct that I am interested in the switch to engage the brake light. When I went to Radio Shack a few weeks ago to get the switch, wires, solder, etc for the light I have, I looked at a bunch of the switches to think about how to make one work--I was trying to think of a way to push a push button switch with a pull of the brake lever, but nothing really HIT me as the "best way". I have a dual-pull as well, so all the better if you come up with a switch solution.

    I just ordered an LED back light, and will be ordering an LED headlight (I have a halogen ATV/tractor light right now) because I know charging the battery will be a pain... didn't think of how much power the halogen pulls until after I bought it (and someone pointed out the wattage/amperage... it's been a long time since I've thought about that stuff...) The headlight I have in mind is something like $70, so it's going to be a month or so before I get it.

    Oh, I have a question-- the battery I just ordered has to be strong enough for my current headlight-- the battery is 12 volts and 7 amps (it's a 55w bulb)... is that "too much" to run LEDs rated for 12v systems since LEDs draw minuscule amounts of amps? It's been a LONG time since I've built circuits, and I never built any without the help of my dad who was an engineer (but long since passed away)

    As for welding/soldering, I've got soldering covered. There is also always epoxy and epoxy putty...
  10. UTurn

    UTurn New Member


    I guess the trick isn't to push the switch when you pull the brake, but to release the switch when you pull the brake. A normally closed switch completes the circuit without doing anything, but when you push the button it opens the circuit to cut power. With this in mind, if the rod connected to the lever is pushing the button all the time until you pull the brake then you will have just what you need.

    I'm sorry but I'm not sure about your battery question. I only know that the light mod that I'm working will require resistors. Something already manufactured will have the resistors built in which allows them to rate it a 12 volt. If you have built circuits then you probably know as much as I do already. I'm learning as I go.

    As for the aluminum welding, Google a product called Dura-Fix Rods. It may surprise you what this stuff will do. That's what I used to build the trailer.
  11. ibdennyak

    ibdennyak Guest

    Just a suggestion.....I have a brake lever from an electric hubmotor, and also one from a Honda aero scooter that I am saving for when I install a brake light. They have built in switches to operate the brake lights. I think some of the Chinese scooters use the same setup.

    Also, RedBaronX, the 12 volts 7amp battery will work just fine if your LEDs are designed for 12 volts. That is what the circuit boards do in your assembly
  12. RedBaronX

    RedBaronX Member

    well, I definitely saw many when I was looking at Radio Shack, but I didn't even think about them-- I tend to have a one track mind when I start thinking out a problem.

    I have a brake handle sitting on my desk, and I've been playing with it, looking to see where would be good places to put a switch, and if it's not much different than the dual pull, I can see a good spot for the kind of switch you're talking about... I'll have to take this with my next trip to The Shack...
  13. UTurn

    UTurn New Member

    I'm posting this at the request of Hurricane and for any other interested viewers. This was the procedure for the trailer hitch.

    I would have prefered to use aluminum, but I couldn't find the size I needed or the ability to make sharp bends, so I went with copper. For the first section of the hitch I used a part from an old child trailer hitch, but I'm sure with some flat stock and light steel tubing, one could weld one up easily enough. This mounts to the rear axle. (see hitch photo 1)

    Next I took a 3 inch piece of 3/4 copper and drilled a vertical hole in the end leaving enough for about 1/4 inch overhang on the inside of the hitch. A slit could be cut in the top and bottom of the tube instead to allow for up and down changes in the road, but I just made the hole a bit bigger. I may cut a slit later. A quick release pin connects the two. (photo hitch 2).

    After that I soldered a 45 deg. angle so that the tongue is pulled away from the frame some to allow for better turning. I capped the hitch end for strength and flattened the tongue end. On the tongue end I drilled a hole, and the same on the long part of the tongue connecting the trailer with the hitch. I added a bushing, a couple washers, bolt and lock nut to complete the hitch section. (photo hitch 3) And for those critics out there, yes I know,,, I didn't get the hole centered.. So What! :)

    To finalize the whole tongue section I measured out from the hub to the end of the back tire and cut my tongue tube. This gave me enough of an angle to make sharp turns without rubbing the tire. The rest of the tongue sections and bends are obvious per the photos.
  14. RedBaronX

    RedBaronX Member

    Looking around eBay, I am finding a lot of basic brake levers with brake light switches-- pretty inexpensive, too. So, if I were to get one, and since I use a dual-pull brake lever right now, my next question to myself is-- do I use it for the clutch (which would sacrifice the lever lock) or do I try to figure out a way to dual-pull off a single standard brake lever?

    Or... do I try to find a dual-pull with a brake light switch... which has GOT to exist...
  15. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    Last edited: Oct 17, 2010