Here is the newest build. This is an Outrider USA full suspension chassis "Kit".
There is a back story to my relationship with the guys at Outrider. It all started 8 years ago when I was just starting on my drive system journey (designing and manufacturing my early Astro drive units). Tom from Outrider was one of my earliest customers. He helped me debug my drives and we worked together to refine the drive for the original KMX Typhoon chassis. Over the years, they grew and began building their own drive units using a planetary gear box and their own chassis. They build their own proprietary battery system, BMS, and Delta/Wye switching [smart] board. We have maintained a good relationship over these years and we openly share proprietary [top-secret] information and specs with each other in a climate of trust and respect.
A few months ago we began toying with the idea of taking one of their chassis in a different direction. The first item was to install one of my latest generation drive units. This will roughly double the power versus a standard drive unit. I will, also, be installing high C rate Lipo cells in place of the 18650 cells Outrider normally uses. This increases the output drastically. The 18650 cells are plenty for the drive that is typically used on the Outrider trikes. However, increasing the motor current necessitates higher discharge cells. I will be installing 80 to 120ah of 12S Multistar Lipo. Now for the FUN part....... As you can probably tell by the pictures and the description, I am also developing a quad rear end.
The rear end will be a straight axle unit very similar to the rear end of an ATV (simple swingarm with a long axle and no differential). This is being done because this quad is designed for off-road use only. Therefore, a complicated differential is not needed, or wanted.
Lastly, this build is to evaluate the feaseability of Outrider offering a chassis kit for normal resale. Right now, you must buy an entire completed turn-key trike.
Now, onto the description of the Outrider chassis "Kit".
The first thing I must say is WOW! This thing is phenominally designed. I cannot stress that enough. The flat parts are all CNC laser cut and TIG welded together. The chassis is chromoly where extreme strength is needed and aluminum where a bit less strength is required, but saving weight is more important.
Outrider has moved away from the typical bicycle type design in that this chassis has been designed from the ground up without any preconceived "Bicycle" mindset. They describe their products as "Light weight adventure vehicles" and that is a perfect description for this system. What jumps out immediately is the purpose built aspect of every single item. Typical bicycle parts are too weak for super high stress like this vehicle will encounter, and motorcycle parts are far too heavy. So, this chassis falls right between; it is crazy strong (I mean EXTREMELY strong!) compared to normal bicycle type trike systems, yet it is far lighter than motorcycle type parts would be. This is a truly unique [one-of-a-kind] design.
You can see the components included in the kit layed out on the floor. The massive number if individual parts in this system is truly remarkable. I know many people complain that Outrider vehicles are costly. But, when you see the number of proprietary parts in each kit, the high quality components, the phenominal design, and the quality of the build as a whole (welding, machining, anodizing, powder-coating, etc), it becomes obvious where that financial investment goes. The suspension uses high quality ball joints, bearings, and bushings. The chromoly and aluminum welding is of the highest level. The powder-coat is a thick wrinkle coating that is crazy durable and looks phenomenal. Everything is just so well thought out, I am struggling to find anything that needs improvement.
There are so many details to highlight that I hardly know where to begin. In fact, many of the details will never be seen. For instance, you can see the front bulkhead on the monocoque has laser cut hex holes in it to capture the front suspension arm pivot bolt heads. This allows tensioning those bolts without the hidden bolt heads rotating. Fantasticly well thought out! That is just one minor detail. There are many, MANY more...... Geeze, I could start an entire thread on the seat, alone. It is light, strong, and vented for back cooling. The front suspension is so well thougth out..... There are rubber bump stops at each front wheel. The camber is adjustable. There is a sway bar on the front end. The steering is indirect with redundant linkages running from the tiller yoke to the billet aluminum, ball bearing pivoted steering belcrank. I could go on, and on, and on...... It is too much to describe everything that impresses me about this chassis. Oh, one MAJOR thing to mention is the attention to detail on the under side of the chassis. The bottom of the monocoque is an aluminum cover using MANY screws for strength. But, there is a plastic doubler as a glide [skid] plate as well as a laser cut, powder-coated, chromoly bash guard for the front edge of the box to handle rock snags in that vulnerable area. Did I mention every cover is rubber gasketed? AWESOME! If you look inside the monocoque, it is a feast for the eyes. The lazer cut parts are folded like origami and TIG welded. The guys have a sense of humor too. If you look closely, you will notice tiny smiley faces on the inside dividers.
What a fun [and completely useless] detail that no-one will ever see. But, it is great to see such fun being had by the guys at the factory.
Outrider supplied the kit as shown (other than the rims). I am supplying the pack, motor, reduction unit, charger, and designing quad rear end. The rims in the picture are my own 47mm wide, 20 inch, double wall, aluminum Jetset rims (36 hole). I will be testing 20 inch wheels in back and 26 inch fat tire (4 inch wide) rears. The fronts will remain 2.2 inch wide 20 inchers. Oh, I plan on making a rear rack similar to a pickup bed between the rear wheels.
Anyway, I am sure I will think of other things to mention. But, for now, I will let you guys ask whatever questions you want answered.
1% of the world's population can think "Outside the box". The rest are firmly stuck within the box. Where are you?