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Engine for 2front1rear wheel Trike

Discussion in 'Modifications and Projects' at netrider.net.au started by Bluefang12, Feb 17, 2008.

  1. Hey guys,
    For the last few years i have been toying with the idea of building a trike powered by at motorbike engine/drive train with 2 front steering wheels for stability.

    I have been looking at a whole lot of random kits ranging from using a car Front end and just wielding a bike to the rear to building a proper chassis/roll cage designed to mate with a motorbike rear. Decided to go with a modified Xzilarator plans build trike.

    Now the question i have for u guys is what sort of motorbike engine would u recommend. Atm the plans suggest a Honda Gold wing 1500, because of the low gearing and reverse gear(unfortunately not very popular over here in Aus). Not so worried about the reverse, but i would like the trike to be quick off the line so fairly low gearing would be good. Also would like to be able to modify the rear arm to accept wide car tires, if anyone is able to post any information about doing this that would be great.

    Expecting to pay about 2-3k for engine+rear wheel suspension etc.

  2. Wow, that's a fair old undertaking. My only advic would be to check out the can-am spyder and the t-rex three wheeler to see what they're doing with the front steering.
  3. The "old farts" on this site are good for picking their brains about this sort of stuff, poke ya head in and have a gig about. They are a friendly bunch of geezers with an unknown wealth of info. I am sure they can help you in your quest.
  4. yeah i had a look at the Can-am and the T-rex in all the research i have been doing, T-rex is close to what i ll end up building but the price tag on a T-rex is way way way outside my budget and its also a open vehicle which is not what i am after. The suspension in the T-rex is F1 style with the shocker/springs mounted horizontally so they negate each other. I will be most likely trying to modify the Xzilarator to use that suspension type.

    Also i am asking in this forum because i want bikes readily avaliable in Australia. America/Europe i would be using the Honda Gold Wing cause its alot cheaper and plentyful over there. As much as i would love to be able to import a cheap rear end i think it would blow my budget anyway lol
  5. For fitting a fatter rear tyre I'm thinking something with a single-sided rear swingarm might be your best option - ie a BMW.

    Other option might be to go for the rear-end of a Harley since they don't seem to have much trouble fitting extremely wide tyres - and the fact they use a separate gearbox means you don't have to necessarily use a HD engine. Belt drive would be almost as good as shaft - especially if you enclosed it to protect it from rocks.
  6. What makes you want to build a type of contraption like this?
  7. P-A-R-T.....Y? Because he GOTTA!
  8. I've contemplated this kind of thing for a while. If it was me, I'd go K-series BMW for the powertrain 'cos it's water cooled, grunty, has a car type clutch and it wouldn't be too hard to graft a car wheel onto the hub. Get a smashed LT and I'm pretty sure the recent ones have got a reverse too.

    Up front I'd probably use a VW Beetle beam. Not because they're particularly good. They're not. They are, however, self contained, robust, easy to mount to a one-off frame and well supported with enough aftermarket parts and knowledge to make them work well enough.

    'Cos trikes built the right way round are utterly barking.
  9. Two wheels up front, one rear wheel. Have the driving wheels on the front and the rear wheel steering. That would be scary!

    Being serious getting something like this on the road would you need an engineering certificate? How would you get a roadworthy certificate?
  10. Thanks for the info guys the K-series BMW sound like a good option specialy with it been one swing arm making it easier to mount a car wheel onto. Now i just have to fine one thats had the front end wrecked.

    Yeah PatB the plans use the VW suspension cause as u say its so easy to use and get ur hands on, but its part that i want to redesign and replace with the F1 style thats alot more compact and lighter. All depends on how easy and how much things cost, Been watching another builder that building from scratch and uing some of his ideas.
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  12. I have started building one also. Why because I can and many cannot.
    I am looking at a Sizuki Carry f/ end and either a BMW K series engine or a Guzzi system.
    How is your job going?
  13. Been thinking much along the same lines BlueFang, there's a BMW wrecker down here that always has a couple of old banger K100s for sale at very low prices. Plenty for sale in the private market too. If I had the money though - shaft drive Guzzi would be a better bet. Just need one that's had a bit of a front-ender. Ditch the vee-dub front end though, a bit more work now, a lot more joy later I reckon.
  14. Which wrecker has K100's please?
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  16. I'm curious about the rego side of things. A assume a motorcycle modified with a twin-wheel front end could be registered as a modified vehicle (as opposed to an individually constructed vehicle). Could you take it a step further and build a frame with car style seats and controls at the front, and still have it certified as a modification to the original motorcycle? You could get something close to an Areil Atom with a bit of work...

    Just thinking aloud.
  17. By going from bike to trike you change the ADR category of the vehicle so it's a bit more involved than just a modification.

    Besides, if you license the beastie as an Individually Constructed Vehicle, you can actually do rather more than you can if you're modifying an existing vehicle, the reason being that you become the manufacturer and so are assumed to know what you're doing. As an example, relevant to trikes, there are limits on how far you can change wheel width and diameter on a modified vehicle. as the manufacturer of an ICV, you can put on anything you like.

    Either route will entail quite a lot of bureaucratic bullshit though.
  18. True, but I thought you might be able to get away with such an animal being certified to motorbike type ADRs. Just checked, though, and essentially if you use car seats you have to meet car requirements, e.g. doors, seatbelts, demisters etc.

    Question from the ignorant - wouldn't the depth of bureaucratic bullshit be significantly less for a midified vehicle compared to an ICV?
  19. Not always. Depends what you're doing. Like I said, some modifications are verboten, but you can build an ICV with the identical gear.

    As to the trike requirements, there was quite a bit of discussion of this a few years ago. Previously, trikes had been dealt with by most states as being motorcycles, regardless of the strict letter of the law. Then the actions of the bloke behind the Trike Around Australia charity event led to a reappraisal and a whole lot more cost and pain for any amateur contemplating a trike build.
  20. I like the idea of a 2 front wheel trike, but if you want it quick off the line you're limited by having one wheel to get the power down. How about a Subaru WRX complete front end, connect the rear drive shaft to a suitable bike shaft drive at the rear and you've got awesome power and 3 wheel drive!