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Thread: Recumbent trike.

  1. #1
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    Recumbent trike.

    Here’s annother hobby of mine, building recumbents trikes, this is my latest effort, my eighth.
    Some specs:
    Frame is made from 32mm square tube,
    Swinging arm is 35x 20mm rectangular tube,
    MTB shocky,
    Nine suspension settings,
    Hydraulic disc brakes, 27 gears,
    Tank steering,
    Acherman steering,
    Centrepoint steering,
    Adjustable toe in,
    Two degree camber, t
    Two degree caster,
    20" front wheels,
    700c rear wheels,
    Weight 19kgs,
    Delrin chain guides,
    Wheelbase is 120cms,
    Track is 79cms,
    Shimano Deore cycle parts.

    Frame was stick welded. Unfortunately, my hands and fingers are pretty useless these days so my welding suffers due to not being able to hold the handpiece properly and locked wrists. That's my excuse anyway.

    Idlers, kingpin bushes and steering arm bushes are all frocm turned down Delrin. Chain ibs about 2.5 chains long. Rear suspension has nine evenly spaced settings. Shifters have been reversed, left to right and right to left as my fingers don't work too well anymore. The steering has been geared up to make it stable at speed, this of course increases the turning circle, but, tight enough to turn in a traffic lane. Steering tie rods are mounted with 6mm tie rod ball ends. Tie rod has been threadned with a left and right hand thread to simplify adjustment. All in all I'm quite happy with the trike, it's incredibly comfortable, handles extremely well and if I was 55 years younger would be very fast.






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  2. #2
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    For those that don't know, recumbents were banned from bicycle racing back around 1930, they were simply too fast for diamond frames. This is my eighth trike build, I've also built three two wheel recumbents, now they are fast! I built one before my last trike build but had trouble getting on the thing, kept falling off and injuring myself. At 70 i don't heal too fast now.
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  3. #3
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    I don't use jigs to build, as is the norm. Nor do I copy designs. I design, sketch out on large cardboard sheets and cut and weld pieces together by hand, using digital protractors, engineers squares and so on. The seat for example was made by getting the wife to trace the shape of my back onto a sheet of cardboard. I then bent and twisted two sheets of 3mm aluminium to provide lumbar support and comfort. So comfortable and form fitting I did away with padding.
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  5. #4
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    More pics.
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  6. #5
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Nice. I like the design. Seems simple. Is that your design or did you buy plans? How does it ride? What type wheels are on the front?

    I have made a couple of recumbent bikes and an upright bike.

  7. #6
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    I design my own trikes, this being the eighth. Wheels are 20" with BMX tyres. Handles superbly and its extremely comfortable.

  8. #7
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Awesome. Where did you get axles for the bmx wheels?

  9. #8
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Are you using standard steel ? How does the delrin hold up? I have done roller blades wheels.

  10. #9
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Are all your trikes different? Are you refining as you build? Looks like some critical bending and cutting on the turning assembly. Is that standard or do you create it each time?

    Anyway, very nice. I like bikes, just have not had time to make any more.

  11. #10
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Yep, lots of experimentation. I've posted pics of my last 7 builts and a couple of two wheelers I also made. Don't have any pics of builds before the red. The pics of trikes are in order of build.

    I've tried, joystick, hub, uss and tank steering, tank is by far the best. Also experimented with seat height, seat placement, seat shapes and material, chassis design and materials, track, wheelbase, gear trains and so on.

    The red, black, white and grey ones were all made from rubbish I found down the local rubbish dump, the grey one Was in use for over 10 years and saw many, many klms. There was about a 7 year gap between the grey one and the next three when I rode an MTB.
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  12. #11
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Another two trikes and two two wheels.
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  14. #12
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Used donor bikes are difficult to find since Covid. What did you use for the axles on the front?

  15. #13
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Axles were turned down 19mm stock, then drilled through the centre to lighten it up.

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  17. #14
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Turned them up on the lathe, 15mm from memory.

  18. #15
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    Re: Recumbent trike.

    Just bright, mild steel tube with 1.5mm walls. I used roller blade wheels on previous builds. Delrin holds up well, it's harder than the rubber on roller blades.

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