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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Let's get the usual questions out of the way first:
- Why a trike? So I don't fall over as a result of diabetic nerve damage (numbness) in both feet
- Why a reverse trike and side-by-side seating? Can't get my leg high enough to clear a bike seat
- Where did you get the cabover-look idea? Hayabusa Reverse Trike | Build Threads
- Why sacrifice a CX500C to that monstrosity? I have one (bought just before my quad bypass, never ridden since I got it home)
- What sort of front suspension/steering? Triumph Spitfire (because I have those parts already)
- What's that box over the bike? A fiberglass pickup canopy (I already have), narrowed to fit with side windows replaced by mesh for air circulation
- How does the radiator get any fresh air? Except for the cab's footwell, there's no obstruction forward of the radiator
- What's it for? Shopping and other side trips while RVing (it'll be towed backwards behind our Rialta).

Here's a bigger version of the drawing in my avatar:


My questions to you:
- What other issues may I have overlooked in the design plan?
- Besides gunk in the carbs from sitting and a dead battery, what else might need attention after not being ridden for 5+ years?
- Are my mounting points (frame neck and points B, C, and E below) adequate for securing the CX500C?


Thanks ,
 

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When you say it will be towed backwards, you mean the rear tire (drive wheel) will be off the ground, correct? I can see your towbar in the diagram, and I'm assuming it would but wanted to make sure that's going to lift the tire off the ground.

Also, how much additional weight do you expect the suspension, cab and related parts will add?
 

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the other issue i have seen with this design is the guy wound up needing to put weight in the back

over the rear wheel in the rain on a slight up hill with him in the front it would sit there and spin the back wheel

be carefull how you attach this you can use the neck but you have o go under the motor and tie back to the frame

the engine it to weak to mount to
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
When you say it will be towed backwards, you mean the rear tire (drive wheel) will be off the ground, correct? . . .
Yes, when towed, it will become a two-wheel trailer. Stop lights and red turn signals (controlled by the motorhome) will be affixed to a board that will bolt to the front of the trike like a bumper. I may need to compress the CX500C's suspension and then strap it in place so it doesn't dangle too low and touch the ground when going over bumps.

. . . Also, how much additional weight do you expect the suspension, cab and related parts will add?
No idea, really, but as little as necessary, since the maximum the Rialta is rated to tow (without controlled brakes) is 1000 lbs. The related issue is tongue weight, though I can decrease that by making the towbar longer for more leverage.

The base bike weighs 450-ish dry (or so I've read), minus the front forks/trees/wheel/brake/fender and handlebar in this case, so the rest needs to be less than 600 pounds. I think I can make that.

To keep the trike's GVW as low as possible, there is no windshield or other glass, the cab body is about as sturdy as a fairing, doors are like off-road Jeep doors (vinyl over a rod frame), etc. The trike frame (to the rear of the Spitfire piece shown below) will be 1.5"x1.5" (0.125" wall), and all other tubing will be as light as practical/safe.

The Spitfire front suspension/steering/brakes is a smaller, lighter version of a Mustang II frontend:
 

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Looks interesting, I have been playing with the idea of towing the JZR backwards, I wasn't too worried about the suspension because a normal 2 wheeled trailer will be sprung, but it was locking the steering and making sure it was always in the straight ahead position that was my main concern. That and the weight on the tow bar. The JZR weighs I think approx 400 kilos, with most of the weight over the front wheels, but having the rear end on the towbar was still too heavy for the max tow ball deadweight of IIRC 110lbs.

i now tow it with all 3 wheels on the ground using a simple A-frame, only problem with this is that the propshaft is turning, and registering mileage on my restricted mileage insurance!

just another thought, what tyres will you have on the front? I wanted radials all round so I had a Citroen 2cv rim mated to the rear hub so I could use a Michelin XZX 135 profile car tyre. Using the rear bike tyre isn't ideal, IMHO.

hope these thoughts help.

Malcolm
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
. . . i now tow it with all 3 wheels on the ground using a simple A-frame, only problem with this is that the propshaft is turning, and registering mileage on my restricted mileage insurance!
I thought I'd read somewhere that having the rear wheel on the ground without the engine running was a no-no because the trans wouldn't get lubricated (same issue as with an automatic transmission car being flat towed).

. . . what tyres will you have on the front? . . . Using the rear bike tyre isn't ideal, IMHO. . . .
None of this project is ideal; it's more akin to looking in the cupboard to see what we can eat for dinner. My rule is if I don't already have a part for a project, perhaps I should build something else.

Front tires/tyres will be 185/70R13 on 5.5x13 slotted alloy wheels because . . . wait for it . . . I already have those.

Before I thought about how i'd get in and out at 67, I'd considered using a FiberFab Gazelle (kitcar) body and a long custom driveshaft (prop shaft) because . . . I already have one of those kitcar bodies, but I'd have to pay someone to fabricate an extended driveshaft (2nd reason for abandoning that project). I could make the boat tail part for the rear, though, using the 1940 Chevy hood (bonnet) that I already have as a mold for the fiberglass. It would have looked something like this with VW Bug 15" spoked alloys and 195/55R15 tires (TIAH) via a pair of machined wheel adapters (shown in second post of this thread):
 

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I'm not seeing the pic in the 1st post.

Check with your local DMV about the legality of a vehicle like that in your area. I know you aren't allowed to home build a trike with 2 wheels in the front in Ontario but hopefully you will be allowed to there.
 

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Right, you don't want the drive wheel being towed on the ground, and definitely not for long distances, without lubrication (which it won't have without the engine running) or without disconnecting the drive shaft first. Sounds like you have the weight under control. I'm not exactly sure what's considered to be too heavy for the CXs clutch, but just thought I'd mention it.

Like OCR said we'll all be looking forward to seeing some pics! :)

Good luck with the build!
 

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Doc, if you got the impression I was being negative in my post, my apologies, it's the opposite. Your approach is much like mine, if I have a part, can I use it......Must be an age thing, I'm also 67!

For instance, I made an air outlet for the bonnet (hood) from a firework rocket nose cone cut in half, and rear light fairings from 3" plastic rainwater downpipe "slash cut".

What are your plans for gear change and rear brake? (I can't see the larger pics on my iPad for some reason)

The tyre thing, I was speaking from experience, when I first built my JZR reverse trike, I did use the bike tyre on the rear, with radials on the front. Believe me, it ain't good. I'm not sure if the bike tyre is true radial or not, but in UK at least, radial front and non radial at the rear is illegal on any vehicle, and from my experience rightly so.

thanks to all for the comments about towing, I hadn't thought of this as a problem, several other JZR owners use the same method, with no reports of problems, other than, again, that of legality. But I will rethink now!

Regarding weight and the clutch, not had any problem in 15 years on the road, both clutch and engine power deal with the extra weight more than adequately. The two biggest headaches have been overheating, which Doc seems to have under control, and electrics, having to power car lights - twice as many as on the bike. OK if mainly daylight use, of course!

again, hope these thoughts help

malcolm
 

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If it's raining, we won't be in it.
If you're not going to ride in the rain, why not use just a windshield instead of what appears to be a full cab? This would lighten the beast and you would get more of a motorcycle riding experience along with the very air colliding with the chrome of her hair, or something like that (sorry Mr. Young).
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
If you're not going to ride in the rain, why not use just a windshield instead of what appears to be a full cab? . . .
Don't think of the roof as an umbrella, imagine it as a parasol. TheMissus is a fair-skinned blond who is not amused by sitting in direct overhead sun such as while waiting at traffic lights. That was the third and final straw in the demise of my Winged Banger trike design.

For towing weight reasons (and because it'll be registered as a motorcycle which doesn't require a windshield), there is no windshield, or any other glass, except the lens of the single headlamp from the CX500C (cyclops style). Open space is the plan for where the windshield, side windows, and rear window would be in a normal pickup. The doors are merely psychological protection - to have nothing but space where there's usually metal was deemed too anxiety producing.
 

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I might be concerned about fuel flow, based on the above dynamics.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Doc, if you got the impression I was being negative in my post, my apologies, it's the opposite. Your approach is much like mine, if I have a part, can I use it......Must be an age thing, I'm also 67!
No offense taken as I saw your comments as constructive. I like to think of myself as a "selective hoarder" - not the kind who compulsively keeps everything. Problem is that I see too many things as useful or having potential for diverse applications. I can no longer afford to buy new stuff, fortunately, but I can sell something if I need to pay for a service such as machine work.

. . . What are your plans for gear change and rear brake? . . .
I may use a VW Bug set of pedals because . . . you know . . . but I'd also thought about using a gear change lever with the clutch lever from the bike on the top of it (like the release on an old floor-mounted emergency/parking brake lever). A gear change would be 1) squeeze handle/lever on the gear lever, 2) move the gear lever, 3) release the clutch handle/lever. With either clutch actuator (pedal or hand lever), the gear lever would come forward from under the seat then vertical (same as my Palmer Independence mobility scooter).

I won't know without trying it whether the CX500C rear brake will be needed or not since 90% of all braking is done by the front tires (where I'll have disc brakes and 185mm width rubber). If it's not needed to stop the trike, I'll hook it up as a parking brake.
 

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Make sure the weight on the front wheels is equal to the Triumph Spitfire's entire stock weight. this includes rider and passenger weight. I recently built a tripod trike (La Cosa project) using an MGB front end. I had more frightful steering moments because of that oversight and I found out after selling the rig, what I was missing. You can also adjust the front suspension to work with the new lack of the weight of the engine.

Been watching you for years. carcentric.com .


My latest trike project:



Radio Flyer II Photos by Windjammer73 | Photobucket


Phil in Lowgap, NC
 

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I wish the Australian design rules would allow me to do something similar but they are horrific, can be done but not on my budget with engineers reports, professional welding etc. I would like to make 2 comments about the use of an existing front end in this build. 1] with far less weight on it the tie rods will not be horizontal but angled down, this will give "bump steer" and the car will dive around over bumps, this can be cured by shortening springs. 2] shortening the wheel base from that of the spitfire will reduce "toe out on turns" and the tyres may scrub on tight turns, i dont mean to throw a spanner in the works at all just letting you know ahead of time, perhaps a yarn with a good wheel alignment specialist might help. all the best, wish i lived next door !
 

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I might be concerned about fuel flow, based on the above dynamics.
I plan to use the stock fuel tank, gravity feeding the carbs - the same as the bike uses now. I must be missing the point of your post.
I probably missed the point of my post too, it was getting late. Maybe I was just looking at the angles wrong. A Custom tank wouldn't get you very far anyway.

Joel in the Couve
 
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