Quieter bike engine kit (don't need speed)

Discussion in 'General Questions' started by taco-man, May 9, 2010.

  1. taco-man

    taco-man New Member

    I would really appreciate it if i could get some recommendations on what kind of kit to get.

    I had a stroke a year ago (at 22 years old) and my left side doesn't have the strength to pedal for more than a couple minutes. I am looking to get a motor kit so i could still go cycling with other family members, so i don't care at all about the top speed or acceleration or anything like that. I'm just planning to go the same speed as the rest of my family who would be riding regular pedal power only bikes.

    I'm just looking for something quieter so i don't anger anyone with the noise (or gain the attention of the police). As I said before i don't need something that goes fast at all. Any information that people could provide or point me in the direction of would be extremely awesome! :grin5:

  2. thine82

    thine82 Member

    well you could figure out how they made that drill bicycle run and then adapt it to go quicker.. or find the smallest engine that does high rpms and then make a gear box so it would move it. it would be slow but could be made almost like stealthy.. yeah it could be made of gas that way. wish i knew how to do the math on the weight to figure out how many cordless drill batterys it would take or a motorcycle batteries .. sorry my spelling sucks also.
  3. Wheres my dog

    Wheres my dog New Member

    I have used many different engines over the years, both small and large, and by far I have to say that the TITAN (www.thatsdax.com) is by far the QUIETEST 4 stroke engine I have ever been around in my life!

    When Idling, you could literally whisper to someone and be able to hear it!

    Not to mention it is a very reliable engine with very good torque as well!
  4. why don't you get a electric bike,its not like the rest of them can peddal very far.
  5. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    Hello, some initial suggestions:

    Some of what goes into the decision of what might be best for you is how far or long you will ride in an outing, the terrain, the total weight of bike and rider and your budget.

    Electric bikes were mentioned and that may very well be good for you. They are very quiet and usually unobtrusive in appearance, so much so that one can usually get away with riding them under power on bike trails for example.
    Good or decent Ebikes can be costly, however. Their downside in the lower price range is often the limit one can travel on a charge. You may also find in the cheaper Ebikes they are short on power but again some of this will depend on rider weight and terrain. For example as a starting point at the very low end. WMart sells an electric bike for around $300 complete. I cannot vouch or say much at all about it other than it's inexpensive and the price will go up from there to multiple hundreds or even thousands.

    If you wanted to go with an ICE, internal combustion engine, I'd suggest a small Japanese 4 stroke engine, Robin or Honda, and for ease of install and almost completely trouble free riding a friction drive. The mini 4 strokes are pretty quiet out of the box and I've had good luck with adding 12" of common automotive 1/2" heater hose, found at most hardware or car parts stores, at the muffler end to dampen the exhaust note even further. You barely hear them at idle.

    Good luck with your riding and if you have more questions please don't hesitate to ask.
  6. Esteban

    Esteban Active Member

    Since the other family members are just pedalling, an electric would be the simplest & best for you, I think.
    Keep up physical activity & therapy & I hope & pray that your recovery gets better & better !!
  7. pedalless

    pedalless Member

    The electric bicycle sounds to be the best pick in this circumstance
    you can get much distance with electric, seems on this site most members have limited knowledge with electric bicycle most think an electric can go around the block once and it needs charging, this is far from the case if you use the correct components. If you get a 750watt electric you will be legal depending on how far you wish to be able to travel will determine the size of battery you will need to use. 36v 15ah Lifepo4 is about 350 dollars and will easily get you 30km at speeds you would ride with your family. If you need more go 48v 20ah Lifep04 this will be good for anywhere up and beyond 50km
    If you put in some pedal assist you will go much further, if you ride alot faster though you say speed is not important you would go less distance. On other hand if you road very conservatively you could go 60-70km with light pedal.
  8. 5-7HEAVEN

    5-7HEAVEN Guest

    I agree that electric bike works well and has great range also.

    My first bike was a Raleigh girlie cruiser with front hub motor. At 36 volts, it rolled around at less than 20mph. I upped the voltage to 48 volts and performance increased. At 72 volts,acceleration was great. Speed was 27mph with 54-mile range.

    The biggest disadvantage was 85 pounds of lead batteries, and I had to carry the 135lb bike upstairs. If I had a garage to store and recharge the bike, I would've kept it.

    Now if you had a trike, you could easily carry the heavy batteries.
  9. JunkyardDog

    JunkyardDog Active Member

    I also had a minor stroke about 8 years ago, at age 43, but the damage was not serious. What prevents me from riding is severe arthritis and fibromyalgia. I am a former mountain biker, and an auto mechanic, so I am familiar with both bikes and engines, but this is the first time I have used them together.

    I got into motored bikes with a used Island Hoppers Viper friction drive kit that I got for cheap. It has the Tecumseh TCII engine, which has to be the loudest engine on earth. Sounds like 10 chainsaws all running at once. I have to wear earplugs to ride it. Other than that it has worked great, it is slow, but that is not a problem. The max legal speed here in AZ is 20 mph, and I really have no desire to go faster.

    While this setup is legal here, it is no fun to ride, because of the noise. There are a lot of Lance Armstrong types here, and also a lot of seniors out for exercise or walking their dogs. I get dirty looks from all of them. I'm sure they don't realize I can't pedal, but it makes me look like the bad guy. So I am also looking for something quieter. I am considering the Titan XC50/BMP kit from www.thatsdax.com. Does anybody have any experience with, or opinions about this kit? Thanks. Jerry.
  10. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    taco-man, I think I'm qualified to put in my 2c worth here - I also had a minor stroke at 42, 10 years ago, continued weakness down my left side and now have emphysema and arthritis.
    I own both a 200W electric and a 66cc HT with shift kit.

    Pedal-starting a standard Chinese HT engine isn't hard - you can pedal a little or roll down a hill and then 'bump' start.
    With standard gearing, however, they don't like to go slower than about 10mph - a little fast for idling along next to a pedal-powered bike. A larger rear sprocket for lower gearing would help.
    A HT engine with a shift-kit would be better for low-end speed, but then you have to actively 'pedal-start' and can't 'bump-start' using momentum.

    On the other hand, an electric works happily down to 0mph, makes no noise, has no 'starting' problems, but has a lower speed and limited range, (30kph and 32km in my case), but much higher cost.
    If you can spare the $$$, buy an electric for your purpose. Even my 200W bike would happily keep up with a pedal-powered bike forever with virtually no effort from me.
    (There are pics of both of mine in the album on my profile page.)

    Let us know which way you decide to go and what you buy.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2010
  11. Neon

    Neon Member

    I'm a big fan of electric so i would say electric is the way to go as well. The Walmart bikes are not a bad way to start out. With a few improvements they can be made into much better e-bikes. But those improvements cast extra money and adds to the price of the bike. As far as being quiet, they're not really that quiet because of the gear reduction. Starting off they sound like a car with a standard transmission backing up. At speed there is a very loud whine that i can't compare to anything. But they have enough power to climb hills very well. Even with a soggy 200 lb rider aboard.
  12. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    Just want to point out that not all electrics are noisy. My (presumably non-geared) hub motor makes virtually no noise.
  13. Neon

    Neon Member

    I know not all motors are noisy Steve. I was simple mentioning the cheap walmart bikes with the Currie electric 450 watt motors. All that i've heard sound the same. I would love to nab a hub motor. Could come closer to having the ultimate stealth bike.
  14. AussieSteve

    AussieSteve Active Member

    It [/i]is[/i] good for stealth - even when they see it many people don't realise it's electric and ask what the box, (battery), is for.
    I'd love 450W, though. I've considered an upgrade, but then range would suffer unless I also upgrade to a 14Ah or bigger battery, so I stuck with the 200W motor.
    From the noise point-of-view, on shared pedestrian/bicycle cycleways, I have to ring the bell when I approach people from behind to avoid panicked leaps out of the way. The only sound is the clicking of the pawls in the rear freewheel.

    Another less often mentioned advantage of electrics is that they're virtually maintenance-free compared to the ICE bikes. Aside from charging the battery after rides, the maintenance is the same as a normal bicycle.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2010
  15. mlcorson

    mlcorson Member

    Mini 4 stroke engines.
    You said:
    No chance this can damage the motor? Could the added pressure possibly burn the exhaust valve? Is the heater hose an 1/2" ID?

    see this comment:

  16. Happy Valley

    Happy Valley Active Member

    Could it? I think like many things it depends on how it's done and care that goes into it. Yes, 1/2" ID and I buy the hose by the foot so 12" is just right, a straight shot with no radical bends, also I've been remiss not to mention I remove the chintzy "spark arrester" screens, my thought being it's removal balances any added restriction of the hose.

    Many miles later, so far so good and it really knocks down a lot of noise.
  17. mlcorson

    mlcorson Member

    I will give it a try.