Friction Drive Tyre Problem

Discussion in 'Friction Drive' started by bilboby, Jul 15, 2011.

  1. bilboby

    bilboby Member

    Just when i thought i'd finally got the friction drive setup to a tee i'm now discovering a new problem albeit no-doubt a regular and recurring one with other MB friction drive users.

    The problem is that of the drive roller eating away at the rear tyre to the extent that after the next ride for safety reasons a new tyre will be required. Is there anyway of fixing this problem apart from replacing the current setup to that of a Chain Drive as supplied by Staton. I've wondered whether or not experimenting by putting rubber from a inner tube or actual tyre piece over the roller might solve the problem. Hence has any FDMB user tried such a method and if so what are/were their findings on the experiment?

    Cheers for any feedback

    Happy MB Riding

  2. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    I will briefly suggest that in almost all instances with a quality friction drive set-up like you have, excessive tire wear is caused by one or more of the following: a misaligned installation, under inflated tire, inadequate down pressure on the roller or operator error IE: jackrabbit starts, etc.

    The particulars on this have been covered numerable times and are found with a quick search in the friction drive section and back pages.
  3. Esteban

    Esteban Active Member

    LEARN to drive a friction powered bike. I have had several & the tires last a long time for me .
    Slow ,easy take offs,, no revving when stopped , no revving or higher rpms when riding with wet tire,, " feather " the throttle when accelerating , etc.
    The previously mentioned tips on proper adjustment help, too. NO mountain bike tires, either .
  4. bilboby

    bilboby Member

    Cheers for the hint & tip's guy's as i now realize i need for changing the mountain bike tyre to that of a more suitable FD type along with also stop revving up when i've stopped at the red light.

    Enjoy the MB Riding
  5. Esteban

    Esteban Active Member

    You have to take it very easy. Pedal to start off from a start, too. See the bike in my avatar ? The front tire was dry rotted before it wore out. You will be surpised how well a " slick, " or " semi-slick " tire works on these.
  6. bilboby

    bilboby Member

    I was advised by a cyclist friend this morning on fitting a Schwalbe Marathon Plus tyre:eek: which can be purchased quite cheap over here and apparently is less prone to punctures etc. Also this afternoon whilst inspecting the FD housing + motor i notice that the whole unit has shifted some what to the point that the roller is no longer sitting central on the rear wheel currently in use. Unfortunately i don't think any shaft spacers came with the kit hence i've had to compromise by fitting whatever parts i had available namely a small diameter plastic tube cut to size for use as spacers.

  7. Esteban

    Esteban Active Member

    The Marathon Plus tires are good tires,, but there are several different tread designs bearing the same name. Most drive rollers on the motors are grooved to grip the tire. If you also have an agressive tread tire,, you are defeating its purpose & limiting the overall traction. As stated above, something in a semi-slick tire works well.
    YES, roller should be centered over the tire, but not always 100% possible. At least make sure that roller is horizontal , & when engaged to ride, tire should deflect about 1/4" / 6mm . A little trial and error makes you find the best . Ride it like a motorized bike,, a motor - ASSISTED bike, & not like a motorcycle,, & you will be much happer.
  8. bilboby

    bilboby Member

    After another day of MB enjoyment it's now possible to say that the Honda GXH 50 is a decent little motor for relative newcomers like myself to MB riding. Why on earth i went down the Chinese made engine route first and second time i'll never know but i sure for one know now that i won't be buying Chinese again.

    Now onto the tyre problem:

    Strangely today it would seem less chewing of the tyre from the roller occured unlike previous rides after it should be said taking onboard the good advice from you guy's. I did however have to make a small alteration to the gear sprocket side FD support bar as it was showing sign's of bowing. Therefore i've fitted a second bar (from a failed BGF FD kit:veryangry:) alongside the original in the hope of a sturdier and much stronger support. It's to early to know if this idea will work but first results are promising thus i might fit a second bar on the otherside?

    Pictures of the modification and that showing the engine fitted on the bike have been sent with this reply thus any further helpful thought's or comments are more than welcome.

    Cheers and happy MB riding

    NB: Note the photo showing inside the roller case and that of the tyre debris on the inside. Fortunately like i've already mentioned with this reply such a problem is showing signs of being less. However i'm still going to purchase the Marathon Plus Range of Slick Tyre.

    Attached Files:

  9. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    Hoo boy, I commented above about various adjustments never thinking you were running a knobby tire. Esteban picked up on it though.
    That's most of your trouble, every pass of the roller chews at the trailing edge of the tread lugs under deflection, plus making for what I assume to be a lot of vibration. Get some slicks, you'll be amazed at the difference.
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011
  10. Chalo

    Chalo Member

    The Marathon Plus is a fantastic tire, but it would not be my first choice for a friction drive. The reason for that is that much of the extreme thickness of the Marathon Plus is polyurethane rubber (blue in color), which is excellent for preventing punctures and maintaining low rolling resistance, but no good for traction. So once you wear down through the normal thickness of tread rubber, the roller will probably spin damagingly on the polyurethane rubber that shows through.

    The normal Schwalbe Marathon HS 368 or the Schwalbe Citizen HS 416 would be better choices.

    Last edited: Jul 18, 2011
  11. darwin

    darwin Well-Known Member

    Go to niagracycles and buy the chen-seng for 10$ and it will last 1500 miles. Best friction tire for the money.
  12. Chalo

    Chalo Member

    That's Cheng Shin, and they make a lot of different tires under the names Cheng Shin Tire, CST, and Maxxis.

    I'm guessing you refer to the Cheng Shin C241 cruiser tire, which is a good pick for friction drive. And cheap.

  13. darwin

    darwin Well-Known Member

    Burrrrrrrrrrrrrp yea thats the tire I was too lazy to look it up.:jester:
  14. occchopperfl

    occchopperfl Member

    Hi Chalo,

    Long time!

    What do you think about this tire for FD?

  15. Chalo

    Chalo Member

    That's a good one; it's nice and thick, pretty fast, and tough. I had a pair of tires like that in the 700x40 size for many years. The gum sidewalls got all cracky before there was significant tread wear.

    A very small diameter or high powered roller would probably take a little bite of each tread groove that crosses the center.

  16. happycheapskate

    happycheapskate Active Member

    I love Niagara Cycle! I am waiting to purchase a FD kit and motor, and plan to run something like these: (police bike tires, knobby on sides, slick band in the middle)

    So far my experience with 26" slicks on my china-kit bike has not been good! They were great in the rain and fast on pavement, but any dirt or gravel and I was riding like a rodeo cowboy.
  17. loquin

    loquin Active Member

    If you occasionally ride off-road, take a look at the Continental Town & Country, or the equivalent Serfas Drifters. They have an inverted tread design (recesses instead of knobs,) with a continuous slick center portion on the crown of the tire around the circumference, which provides a nice, smooth portion for the friction roller contact. They ride very nicely on the pavement, and only under hard cornering do you ever feel feel the tread.

    Attached Files:

  18. rawly old

    rawly old Member

    For the price, a kenda 838 work just as well as the pricier schwalbes.

    p.s. i do like the look of the attachments for an off-road alternative.
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2011
  19. happycheapskate

    happycheapskate Active Member

  20. rawly old

    rawly old Member

    glad there's a viable 700 tire out there; i'm about to motorize my
    road bike as well.