Good-bye to China/Grubee Junk, Hello To Reliable Motorized Bicycling!

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johncy7

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I want to share with you how to build an extremely reliable motorized bicycle. If you haven't read my (very bad) experiences with China/Grubee parts, you can do so here:

http://motorbicycling.com/showthread.php?t=37647

Unfortunately, but expectantly, I got burned by the last few parts from China/Grubee I was still using. The chain finally stretched beyond usability and came apart. Of course I was over 10 miles from home. It amazes me how they can engineer their junk to break when you are furthest from your destination. Soon after replacing it, the tensioner pulled into my spokes breaking several of them, and the crappy throttle they sold me broke while installing it on my new friction kit. The admin here didn't give me the last word on the thread I started (cute closing comment Ilikeabikea) but still, those who listened to my advice were rewarded and those who didn't suffered a similar fate as I did I'm sure. I'm sorry, this is not the cheap option. Cost is around $700+shipping. If I were going for the cheaper option I would probably get the Honda kit from flmotorbikes $490 or a Bumble Bee for $250. A strong tire/tube combination as I point out below would also be needed.

Here's the RELIABLE parts list I use:
[$325] One Honda GXH50 or other (not made in China engine)
[$160] One Staton Friction Drive Kit 1 1/8" roller (yes, you heard me right, "friction". I went with Staton because it's made in the USA? NO! Because it's NOT made in China!)
[$130] One centrifugal clutch adapter (I got mine from Staton also in the hopes of eliminating a mismatch with the fiction kit bell)
[$$$] Any ole' bike frame (hopefully not made in China. Funny fact though, I'm using a old Huffy mountain bike that oddly enough has USA stickers on it. Maybe Huffy was once made in USA? hmm... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Huffy)
[$10] One thorn resistant inner tube for the rear (these are heavy and thick in the $10 range)
[$45] One semi-smooth Armadillo tire for the rear (I can't stress how important this is. This is one tough tire that you will need. I read, Continental Grand Prix's are comparable but my local shop carried Armadillo's)
[$30] One optional larger gas tank to get you further down the road before re-fueling

I am so impressed by this bike that I wanted to share it with you. It is hard to believe how long and how far I've gone without breaking down even one time! It's mind boggling. I'm sadden that my $300 EZM Q-matic transmission is now on the shelf, because that is a very nice part. I also still have my brand new untouched Grubee 66cc replacement engine on the shelf that I like to point at with my finger (figuratively) and laugh at as I go in/out of the shed from another long, dependable and very enjoyable ride. "you can't screw me now @#$%^&*@#$! ahahahahahah" or something like that. :)

Helpful Tips:
* You can rig up a good throttle cable to the Honda GXH50 easily, using the existing linkage and Staton's throttle that comes with their kit
* Do not try saving money on tires/tubes at Wal-(China)-mart or you void this great advice and we absolutely can not be friends! :)
* Riding in the rain is no problem but you will need to oil the friction roller bearings periodically. (I found that out when the squeaking got pretty loud)
* You will rack up some serious miles so do not forget to change the oil and clean the air filter regularly
* I use a plastic tire liner and and old flat inner tube inside the tire for extra tube protection
* I always carry tools and an extra inner tube just in case. I have not had a flat since using the Armadillo tire/thorn resistant tube
* I have a large knobby mountain bike tire on the front but don't do anything special to prevent flats on it. The rear takes the major abuse, but if you have the cash and get an Armadillo tire and thorn resistant tube for the font, it sure won't hurt :)
* You can use any tire/rim in a crunch! (before learning the proper tire/tube combination, I had a tire blow out and a flat. Pushed it to my girlfriends and put her old rear tire/rim on my bike and road it home on the friction drive over 8 miles! no messing around with sprockets and chains!)

For those who are the chain-drive-only types, let me say... I was one of you and really expected the chain drive to be superior. But it simply wasn't. I did not think friction was the way to go, but since I've bolted this on from the beginning, it remains untouched from that moment until now. I have been riding it 35+ miles a day to work and everywhere in between reliably without having to work on it, other than for flats until I got that straightened out. I now know this is currently the best and most reliable kit you can buy... so I'm sharing this with you so you won't suffer like I did and you will be able to reliably go from A to B without having to take the bus or waste your time and money on crappy China/Grubee parts.

I hope this helps someone...
John
 
I have had excellent reliability with the newer Chinese 2-stroke bicycle engines, fitted with the crowded needle roller big end connecting rod bearing, but i would not touch the standard single speed chain drive system with a 100 foot barge pole.

Combine the Chinese bicycle engine with a Jaguar CDI, Rock Solid Engines reed valve intake system and a Walbro Carburettor + installation of a Sick Bike Parts shift kit and custom chain tensioners and you're on a winner; giving many miles of trouble free service!!!
 
John: This is a great and valuable post. I know that many people don't have the writing skills or intellectual organization to share information as thoroughly and concisely (and even a bit humorously) as this. But I think a lot of forum members would agree that it's posts like this where the author "breaks a sweat" and takes the time to carefully compose his information that makes these forums so valuable. Bravo!
 
Hey John,

Should a, would a, could a...

a. bought a grubee rear mount 4 stroke kit...
(couldnt get the drive wheel concentric with the "rubber gasket" kit)

b. bought a BMP friction drive kit with the chain and belt option.
PROBLEM - WORRY FREE DRIVE
(couldn't be happier with the drive kit.)

c. Last week, bike dropped on the side 2x, FIRST TIME EVER DROPPED...
(grubee 4gt engine wont start)

d. If I had a chance to do it all over again, I would have gotten a Staton kit with the subaru 4s 35cc? engine, as station is still in business, and subaru is a"real" engine.

Just my thoughts.

I hope this too, helps newbies who are looking for a reliable, "commuter grade" gas MB.

:)
 
Thanks Max-M

John: This is a great and valuable post. I know that many people don't have the writing skills or intellectual organization to share information as thoroughly and concisely (and even a bit humorously) as this. But I think a lot of forum members would agree that it's posts like this where the author "breaks a sweat" and takes the time to carefully compose his information that makes these forums so valuable. Bravo!

Too bad an admin over at motorbicycling.com would not agree. I made two threads there. The first was closed by IlikeaBikea and the second one is the exact one you read here. However, the same day I posted it, it was deleted without any notice or explanation. I asked admins why and got no answers. So of course I posted it again. And again it was quietly deleted. This site and theirs show a good contrast between communism and freedom. I'm tired of gasbike.net, Grubee, China, Walmart and spending my hard earned money on junk that works one or two times. Fortunately, I'm old enough to know what it was like before the markets got flooded with the planned obsolescence age. What used to last years might last week now. It's pretty sad.

I don't hate, I'm justifiably mad. :)
 
Hi John

I have to agree with you on the friction drive and a Honda motor ( 35gx/w 1 inch drive roller). Never had a chain drive so I can only say that the Staton FD is tops as far as simplicity and reliability. No major problems, and the ones that do crop up are easily fixed. BTW Bell kevlar rear with a slime tube ( did not know about the Armadillo tire. Made in the USA ? )

Keep ridin

Red
 
@ johncy7

Don't feel too bad about things over on the other site because i received not only a lifetime ban over at motorbicycling.com, but a ban for 3 future reincarnations, retrospectively enforced from my previous spiritual life, simply for posting a satirical link that one of the moderators said was """a political statement""", of which it clearly """was not""" a political statement; being just a bit of good'ol'fashioned witty humour.

I have no idea what's going on but it's a bit messed up when other moderators (who don't have an issue with the post) are overruled by a higher power.
 
Hi John

I have to agree with you on the friction drive and a Honda motor ( 35gx/w 1 inch drive roller). Never had a chain drive so I can only say that the Staton FD is tops as far as simplicity and reliability. No major problems, and the ones that do crop up are easily fixed. BTW Bell kevlar rear with a slime tube ( did not know about the Armadillo tire. Made in the USA ? )

Keep ridin

Red

looks like made in the usa... cool
http://www.specialized.com/us/en/home/
Specialized Bicycle Components, Inc.
15130 Concord Circle
Morgan Hill, CA 95037
United States of America
 
@ johncy7

Don't feel too bad about things over on the other site because i received not only a lifetime ban over at motorbicycling.com, but a ban for 3 future reincarnations, retrospectively enforced from my previous spiritual life, simply for posting a satirical link that one of the moderators said was """a political statement""", of which it clearly """was not""" a political statement; being just a bit of good'ol'fashioned witty humour.

I have no idea what's going on but it's a bit messed up when other moderators (who don't have an issue with the post) are overruled by a higher power.

lol... 4 life-time bans... that's pretty funny lol
 
I have been a member here for many years. From day one, I have always stated , " You get what you pay for !"

I prefer friction drive to anything else.
 
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