What size bike to buy and brake question?

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#1
I’m looking to purchase a bike in the near future. I’m looking at the ones below primarily.

https://www.spookytoothcycles.com/bicycles/chopper-bikes/20-micargi-low-rider-f4.html

I like the idea of a chopper look so this one sticks out to me.

https://www.spookytoothcycles.com/b...en-s-beach-cruisers/20-micargi-mens-hero.html

I like this one cus it looks different then a lot of bikes and kind of neat looking in my eyes. However I’m not sure if the engine I’m going to buy will fit in the frame cus it looks kind of small in the pic.

https://www.spookytoothcycles.com/b...ers/26-micargi-the-general-beach-cruiser.html

I like the look of this one also. Plus the logo on the side is cool because I’m in the Army so that’s a neat touch.

https://www.spookytoothcycles.com/b...each-cruisers/24-micargi-men-s-rover-7sp.html

This one looks neat to me and is probably close to the most I’d like to pay for the bike outright, if possible. Plus I can break with my hands.

1) First question is should I get a 20”, 24” or 26” bike? I’m 6’ and 185 lbs and this will he used to get to work most days. I don’t want to get a bike that is too small or one that is awkwardly big. Also the measurement relates to the frame size not the tires correct

2) All the bikes but one only have coaster brakes. Wouldn’t I want hand operated brakes also on a motorized bike? If so how hard and expensive would that be for me to add?

3) Is there a way to ensure my engine that I’m going to buy will fit in a bike I’m buying online such as the ones above? Below is the engine I’m getting.

https://www.bicycle-engines.com/49cc-4g-t-belt-drive-complete-gas-powered-engine-kit/

4) Which one of the bikes above would you purchase, especially when considering this engine, and why?

Thanks for your help in advance!!
 


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#2
First of all, the 20-24-26 refers to wheel size (actually to tire outside diameter) not frame size. Unless you're built like a gorilla, a 26 is most appropriate for adult riders.

Some sort of cruiser bike is the best for MBs in my opinion. Lots of room in the frame, a long wheelbase and more rake in the fork makes for a stable ride at speed. Touring, racing and mountain bikes are responsive when pedalling, but twitchy when motoring. Of the three you're looking at, the General would be the best bet. But you won't be able to see that cool Army graphic once you put a tank on it. I wouldn't bother with a multi-speed bike unless you're going to pedal it uphill.

For brakes, you're going to want an upgrade. Coaster brake on the rear wheel won't inspire confidence, and rim brakes aren't a whole lot better stopping 300 pounds of bike and rider from 30 mph. Disc brakes are the way to go, but they'll take some fitting. You'll have to upgrade your wheel hubs to disc-compatible, and that means you'll have to build a wheel or at the very least re-lace the spokes into the new hub. It's not hard once you know how to do it, but learning how can be intimidating. Bikeberry sells a rear hub that accepts thread-on disc brake adapters, it's part of a package with a very nice thread-on sprocket, but it comes with a band brake that is beyond worthless. It's worse than a coaster. You'll need a thread-on disc brake adapter (I found one on Amazon, ships from China) and then you'll have to figure out how to mount the caliper to the frame. There are clamp-on brackets that kind of do the job, but your best bet is to make a bracket and weld it onto the frame. Maybe you've got a buddy in the motor pool who can do that part for ya. The front wheel is easier, just buy a disc-brake front wheel or rely on a rim brake, since the rear does most of the work.

Also note that brake levers aren't designed to work with throttles. You end up using two fingers to squeeze the lever. I extended mine with a bit of 1/8 bar stock and a few screws.
 
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#3
First of all, the 20-24-26 refers to wheel size (actually to tire outside diameter) not frame size. Unless you're built like a gorilla, a 26 is most appropriate for adult riders.

Some sort of cruiser bike is the best for MBs in my opinion. Lots of room in the frame, a long wheelbase and more rake in the fork makes for a stable ride at speed. Touring, racing and mountain bikes are responsive when pedalling, but twitchy when motoring. Of the three you're looking at, the General would be the best bet. But you won't be able to see that cool Army graphic once you put a tank on it. I wouldn't bother with a multi-speed bike unless you're going to pedal it uphill.

For brakes, you're going to want an upgrade. Coaster brake on the rear wheel won't inspire confidence, and rim brakes aren't a whole lot better stopping 300 pounds of bike and rider from 30 mph. Disc brakes are the way to go, but they'll take some fitting. You'll have to upgrade your wheel hubs to disc-compatible, and that means you'll have to build a wheel or at the very least re-lace the spokes into the new hub. It's not hard once you know how to do it, but learning how can be intimidating. Bikeberry sells a rear hub that accepts thread-on disc brake adapters, it's part of a package with a very nice thread-on sprocket, but it comes with a band brake that is beyond worthless. It's worse than a coaster. You'll need a thread-on disc brake adapter (I found one on Amazon, ships from China) and then you'll have to figure out how to mount the caliper to the frame. There are clamp-on brackets that kind of do the job, but your best bet is to make a bracket and weld it onto the frame. Maybe you've got a buddy in the motor pool who can do that part for ya. The front wheel is easier, just buy a disc-brake front wheel or rely on a rim brake, since the rear does most of the work.

Also note that brake levers aren't designed to work with throttles. You end up using two fingers to squeeze the lever. I extended mine with a bit of 1/8 bar stock and a few screws.
I really appreciate the input!!

I’ll consider the General more then. It’s ok if the icon is covered up, just thought it was neat.

Dang the brakes sound like a lot of work. Unfortunate I’m new here and we don’t have a motor pool since I’m higher up and in HQs. I also live in an apartment in Korea so I need to minimize how much work I have to do on the bike to get it where I need. This also means I can’t do any welding.

I’m looking at BikeBerry but can’t seem to find that kit that I could buy.

Could I buy these wheels below and take my tires off the old rims and put on these?

https://www.bikeberry.com/bicycles/...avy-duty-motorized-bike-mag-wheels-black.html

Then buy these brake kits:

https://www.bicycledesigner.com/bike-parts/bicycle-brake/front-disc-brake-set-with-160mm-rotor.html

https://www.bicycledesigner.com/bike-parts/bicycle-brake/rear-disc-brake-set-with-160mm-rotor.html

Could I make those 3 purchase and be good to good to go once I install them?

Sorry if I’m missing something obvious since I’m sure I am. I’m completely new to basic bicycles if you couldn’t tell.
 

FurryOnTheInside

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#4
A cruiser frame with its curved downtube is perfect for the 4 stroke engine which is (too bloody) big and needs to be mounted on a (ugly) horizontal plate that comes with the kit.
A bike with derailleur gears probably has 135mm rear dropouts width and that either comes with a freehub wheel or gives you the opportunity to upgrade the wheels with used 26" mountain bike wheels. A single speed cruiser has a narrower hub (with a screw on freewheel) which is designed with the bearings closer to the centre so that the axle is much much more likely to get bent, and 110mm dropouts on single speed cruisers do not allow the use of a freehub. The freehub is inherently stronger than the other one. Many derailleur geared cheap bikes still have the wrong hub design and use a screw on freewheel cluster but the 135mm width allows you to upgrade. 26" x 135mm freehub mountain bike wheels are plentiful on auction sites and there is also a lot of choice if you are looking for a brand new wheelset too.

I don't find my "hybrid" commuter / touring bike twitchy (and with the 2 stroke it goes a bit faster than the 49cc 4 stroke bikes). It's reasonably agile, and I'm used to it. I might want a longer wheelbase if I had a top speed of 50mph. But it would not be a good choice for the 4 stroke kit due to the space that the 4 stroke engine requires.

Head angle and rake combine to give you the trail. More trail gives you more high speed stability and more stability under hard (front) braking. Slack head angles give more trail. Rake reduces trail to more reasonable levels so the bike stays agile, particularly when braking.

Rim brakes can be just as powerful as most disc brakes if you want them to be, if you keep them clean and the rim trued (maximum braking power is limited by the traction of the tyre on the road surface anyway). They are not as good in snow and mud, obviously.
Disc brakes can be terrible if you get crappie cheap ones. Weaker forks not intended for disc brakes might not take the strain of a half decent disc brake, and it's the front brake that does most of the work.. 100% in a straight line or 50% when cornering hard.

I haven't noticed any interference between the twist throttle and a single digit brake lever, personally.

.. Just my tuppence. :)
 
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#5
Is it possible by any chance to buy a beach cruiser with disc brakes or any brakes other than coaster?

Like I said I’m in Korea and would prefer not to have to do any additional maintenance then I have to since I live in an apartment and know nothing about bikes. I’d love to learn during my first build but trying to make it as simple as possible so far.
 
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#6
A cruiser frame with its curved downtube is perfect for the 4 stroke engine which is (too bloody) big and needs to be mounted on a (ugly) horizontal plate that comes with the kit.
A bike with derailleur gears probably has 135mm rear dropouts width and that either comes with a freehub wheel or gives you the opportunity to upgrade the wheels with used 26" mountain bike wheels. A single speed cruiser has a narrower hub (with a screw on freewheel) which is designed with the bearings closer to the centre so that the axle is much much more likely to get bent, and 110mm dropouts on single speed cruisers do not allow the use of a freehub. The freehub is inherently stronger than the other one. Many derailleur geared cheap bikes still have the wrong hub design and use a screw on freewheel cluster but the 135mm width allows you to upgrade. 26" x 135mm freehub mountain bike wheels are plentiful on auction sites and there is also a lot of choice if you are looking for a brand new wheelset too.

I don't find my "hybrid" commuter / touring bike twitchy (and with the 2 stroke it goes a bit faster than the 49cc 4 stroke bikes). It's reasonably agile, and I'm used to it. I might want a longer wheelbase if I had a top speed of 50mph. But it would not be a good choice for the 4 stroke kit due to the space that the 4 stroke engine requires.

Head angle and rake combine to give you the trail. More trail gives you more high speed stability and more stability under hard (front) braking. Slack head angles give more trail. Rake reduces trail to more reasonable levels so the bike stays agile, particularly when braking.

Rim brakes can be just as powerful as most disc brakes if you want them to be, if you keep them clean and the rim trued (maximum braking power is limited by the traction of the tyre on the road surface anyway). They are not as good in snow and mud, obviously.
Disc brakes can be terrible if you get crappie cheap ones. Weaker forks not intended for disc brakes might not take the strain of a half decent disc brake, and it's the front brake that does most of the work.. 100% in a straight line or 50% when cornering hard.

I haven't noticed any interference between the twist throttle and a single digit brake lever, personally.

.. Just my tuppence. :)

Thanks for the response!

I’ll be honest I don’t understand any of that haha. I’ll have to do some googling to try and understand it. I had no idea this process could be so difficult haha

I know I want the beach cruiser look but hate that it adds this much complication since I don’t know what any of these parts mean.
 

FurryOnTheInside

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#7
Thanks for the response!

I’ll be honest I don’t understand any of that haha. I’ll have to do some googling to try and understand it. I had no idea this process could be so difficult haha

I know I want the beach cruiser look but hate that it adds this much complication since I don’t know what any of these parts mean.
Some beach cruisers have derailleur gears and that's good for being able to buy a better wheel when the first one bends its axle. It also won't have a coaster brake.
The wheel that's in it will be fine until that happens. The best replacement wheel will have a hub suited to a disc brake and a rim suited to a rim brake. That just makes it easy to attach the rear sprocket directly to the hub.
A frame with a v brake on the rear rather than a disc brake is good for a first build because mounting the sprocket and disc rotor on the hub just takes a little bit more effort and expense. Other types of rim brake are not as good as the v brake.

Yes I would read up on the choices other builders made and try to understand why, and why we don't all agree with each other's choices. There's no right way to build an MB (but there are surely a lot of really wrong and or dangerous ways lol).
 
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#8
Those wheels you posted would work. You'd still need to mount the calipers to the bike, but there are ways to do that. This is the hub kit:
https://www.bikeberry.com/engine-ki...ree-wheel-pull-start-heavy-duty-axle-kit.html
Buying the wheels would be easier than re-lacing the hub into your back wheel, especially if you're new to bikes. You'll need a sprocket for the pedal chain, sold on the same page as the wheels. That 36t sprocket it comes with is for the engine chain, probably better suited to a 2-stroke.

The easy, no-welding way to put a disc brake on a cruiser is here:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01LATEPZA/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o07_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
However, it doesn't fit all cruisers, especially mine. Looking at how I'd have to modify the thing, I just welded a bracket on. Since that's not an option, buy the bracket and see if it fits. Worst case scenario, you're out six bucks.

Before you take the plunge, look into the licensing requirements. I don't know about Korea, but here in DPR Ohio, an MB that can go faster than 20 mph or has more than 1 HP is the same as a Harley or a Ninja 1000 in the eyes of the law. Probably wrote the law in 1915 and it never got changed.
 

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