mouldfield wrote: ↑
Dec 27, 2017 8:33 pm
diffs seem destined to be one of my more challenging and expensive purchases (especially when you add shipping to Australia).
You might look at used stuff, surely there are people with junked riding mowers, go-karts, etc., that have the part you need that could be shipped *across* Australia a lot cheaper than across the oceans. I've been looking for one locally here in teh valley, but no luck yet (did find two, but neither one of them was actually available when I contacted the advertisers.
I had a look at your build and it looks like it was a lot of fun, even if challenging at times. If I could weld I would have gone for a slightly narrower trike to make it easier to get in and out of gates and to make travelling in bike lanes easier but I can't weld.
Welding is easy, and relatively cheap. I don't know what your equivalent to Harbor Freight is down there, but I'm sure there is one, that sells cheap tools. If not, used welders ought to be relatively cheap. Here, at HF, you can get a cheap (crappy) wirefeed welder for about $100 USD. About $300 USD will get a much better (less crappy) wirefeed welder that can also do MIG if you ever needed to, and have more than just one setting (mine has four levels).
Learning to weld will probably use up any "trial" reel of flux-core wire that comes in it. 10lb reels of fluxcore wire run around $50-$70 USD (2lb reels aren't worth it at more than $20 each).
Pretty much anything made of steel is weldable like this, and there's plenty of good resources to learn how (the miller welding co website among others, as well as various forums and youtube videos, and just plain practicing on junk metal).
Then I found this pedicab which provides a decent frame for a few hundred dollars, and I was also thinking about having a trike which could easily take a Euro-pallet (900cm), so it's just the way things worked out.
A wider trike will handle better in turns at higher-than-walking speeds, so if you have to maneuver suddenly, it'll b a little less likely to tip over. Keeping the majority of the weight low (at the level of the deck or below) will do that too, as will keeping your seat low and forward (why mine has the seat where it is).
A narrower trike has advantages too, in that you can use it on bike paths with bollards that keep out wider ones, or fit it thru doorways if you have to take it inside.
Mine will probably be a bit lighter as a build, and the fairing is important because I'll be carrying quite a bit more weight and in Australia we use the EU standard which currently limits auxiliary motors to 250 watts, which is about a ⅓rd of 1 horsepower. So I have to go for lightest possible and for cutting wind resistance, or it just won't be fun.
Keep in mind that a fairing (especially a full one) has disadvantages:
If it's a full fairing, it will add (possibly significant) weight, so starting up from a stop or going up hills is going to be that much harder to do. If it's all lightweight like coroplast or a shrinkwrap skin over really light frame, the weight won't be that bad, but it'll be less aerodynamically smooth (not as important at lower speeds, but still takes away some of the benefit of having one).
The fairing is probably only going to make a significant difference in power usage above 15MPH, though it will make a little bit down to around 10MPH. If your speeds are never really above 15-20MPH, you won't get that much benefit from the fairing.
If it's a full fairing, it's also going to cause problems in side-winds, which will push you around, though if the trike is heavy and low that will be less of a problem than on a bike.
It can also be an oven inside whenever it's not cold outside. (even 75F on a sunny day could make an enclosed fairing into an oven, if you don't have good air circulation it'll be no fun. (this is the primary reason I haven't made one for anything I ride; it's only cool enough to survive in one without an air conditioner for at best 1/4 of the year (usually less).
I've posted a couple of pics this time before, and after but palleted and wrapped for freighting. The freight co just let me know it'll be here in 30 minutes.
Post some pics once it gets there, of how it is now. Depending on what you want to do with it, i might have suggestions on things.