My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Show off your E-bike creation here.
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Re: 2nd Mockup

Post by Warren » May 07 2018 2:42pm

justin_le wrote:
May 07 2018 12:14pm
We got some footage for another video blog update that we'll get ready soon.
Thanks so much for taking us all along on your adventure.

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by markz » May 08 2018 11:46am

Just ran across this on your website, looks like an awesome trip.

Wish you the best Justin!

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by rowbiker » May 09 2018 7:13am

justin_le wrote:
Apr 17 2018 3:09am
liveforphysics wrote:
Apr 14 2018 11:29pm
I'm not an expert in rowing, but I've heard epic distance endurance rowing event pros end up with chowdered hands afterwards even using the best gear they have.
Oh yeah, I've had my share of that even on not-so epic rowing events! Part of is you said is that on a boat you are using your hands to manipulate and feather the oars, and there is a lot of relative motion as you grip and twist that causes calluses and blisters. I'm hopeful that on the rowing bike it will be possible to have a grip and hand position that is easier on the skin since it's just a straight pulling motion all the time. I'm sure some of the regular rowbike rowers/riders can chime in? I know there is at least 2 or 3 on this message board!
Just piping up as one of the likely 'rowbiker' suspects on ES. I haven't crossed an ocean in a rowboat, but I do have thousands of miles of "rowing/biking" under my belt. For purposes of tackling the Suntrip route on Justin's proposed machine with a straight line rowing action, I'm fairly certain that "chowdered hands" will be the least of his problems. With the ability to trade off with AnSo, a world class athlete in her own right, they're basically astride a perpetual motion machine. Fortunately these guys are Canadian, which is probably as good as being from Switzerland. As a (somewhat reluctant) American at the moment, can you imagine me in Iran at the moment? Even though under normal circumstances I'd willingly ride stoker for Justin through hell and back.

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by thradad » May 09 2018 1:23pm

The 2nd mockup looks fantastic! Will the handle for the rower get attached to a pivot like in the THYS? The stick-on-a-string is surely lighter, but is it more tiring to have to control lateral & twisting motion with your arms while rowing? This seems like it would be similar to the difference between free weights and an exercise machine.

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by dirk pitt » May 13 2018 1:13am

Just one word: Waou!!!!
Justin, you really made impressive work in such a short time.
When I saw the beginning of this post and the short time to departure, I thought: no chance.
but you have done a mass of work.
we are now 4 weeks to departure from Lyon and I guess the last week will not let time for working really.
I really hope you will be ready with this incredible machine.
looking forward to seeing you soon in Lyon or more likely first evening in Le Bourget du Lac.
Chris

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by grindz145 » May 14 2018 9:01pm

Forever an inspiration, along for the ride again yay! I mean... who else? :D

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by justin_le » May 15 2018 4:34am

dirk pitt wrote:
May 13 2018 1:13am
Just one word: Waou!!!!
Justin, you really made impressive work in such a short time.
When I saw the beginning of this post and the short time to departure, I thought: no chance.
but you have done a mass of work.
Thanks Chris, I tried to tell the Suntrip organizers last summer that even if I know about this a year in advance, probably 90% of the work will happen in the weeks before we start. It's in my blood! Just hope that I don't set a bad example for future participants that they can build things at the last minute.

Anyways, for those who didn't see it this was the update from last weekend when we made a mockup of the pivoting rather than the sliding rail foot rigging:


That provided all of the geometry info that I needed to do the full non-mockup fabrication of the actual frame structure that we'll be taking on the SunTrip. I became enamored with the design idea that had a curved roof with solar panels on track rollers to both tilt towards the sun and also provide consistent shade for the riders, which is something you wouldn't get if it just pivoted from a hinge. It requires the left and right travel motion too.
Suntrip Trike Curved ROof.jpg
Suntrip Trike Curved ROof.jpg (26.51 KiB) Viewed 1479 times
This had the doubly fun effect of giving something of an Oregon trail wagon look to the whole affair, which seemed fitting for the upcoming journey. So much details to fill in on but here's how she looks as of this morning!
Suntrip Trike, Mostly Done.jpg
Suntrip Trike, Mostly Done.jpg (174.32 KiB) Viewed 1479 times
Suntrip Trike, Mostly Done Side View.jpg
Suntrip Trike, Mostly Done Side View.jpg (160.3 KiB) Viewed 1479 times
It's got a temporary MXUS rear hub motor on it right now that served the job of letting us do a serious weekend test ride to Gibsons and this past weekend.

Next up is finishing the build of dual grin motors for the front wheels, making the roller mechanism for the rocking roof, designing a luggage storage system between the seats, rebuilding the string rolling trim to something other than a rim and piece of plywood, MPPT for the solar tracker, building a larger solar roof closer to the 550 watt limit for tandem bikes (we're just 400W here), and then figuring out how the #$#@ we pack and ship it to land in France in 3 weeks ;-)
Currently recovering from the Suntrip race on a back to back tandem solar powered row/cycle trike. 550 watt solar roof, dual Grin All Axle hub motors, dual Phaserunner controllers, 12 LiGo batteries, and a whole wack of gear.

Now back in Vancouver with my Big Dummy Frame (yes This One, thanks ES!) with Grin all-axle front hub, Phaserunner controller, and 52V 19Ah Cellman triangle pack
My website: http://www.ebikes.ca
Please contact via email, info@ebikes.ca, rather than PMs, which are disabled

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by liveforphysics » May 15 2018 5:04am

Slick pannel mount, and fantastic build time on a creative project. I hope the trip adventure is filled with wonder and awe daily!
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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by rowbiker » May 15 2018 8:59am

How has the PASD "Row Bike" setting in the new CAv3.1 firmware been working with the rowing action? Which PAS sensor are you currently using on your stoker bottom bracket input assembly?

Are there any addition tweaks to the current 3.1 firmware coming out in the near future or can I proceed with the existing version of the 3.1 firmware on my eRowbike project?

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by eCue » May 15 2018 11:53am

You guys are going to come back looking like Hercules :lol: , its motion looks smooth like the solid roof mount sturdiness and it will be safer for unexpected wind gusts. Great progress !
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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by Warren » May 15 2018 12:27pm

Justin,

You may have procrastinated, but you are really making up for lost time...amazing progress.

On your cord drive; I used 1/8" braided kevlar, but you may have similar issues. Over time; water, oil and grit worked into the cord at the pulleys. They looked fine but eventually ground through the internal fibers and pulled apart. Take lots of spare line. It is much lighter than chain, and might come in handy for other stuff too.

As to keeping soft cord on the pulleys:

https://web.archive.org/web/20051224104 ... RM0854.jpg

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by justin_le » May 30 2018 3:34am

Warren wrote:
May 15 2018 12:27pm
You may have procrastinated, but you are really making up for lost time...amazing progress.
OK, well now it's really to the wire with just 7 days before we fly out! Sorry I haven't been posting more updates and replies to this thread but it's been pretty intense getting everything together. 2 weeks ago I went down a crazy saga getting the frame tubes bent for the rolling roof structure. Not sure if building our own tube roller was the smartest idea but in the end it worked out. You've already seen the picture of the results but here you can appreciate a bit more of the sweat that was needed to achieve that!


After that, we got a chance to meet with Sarah Outen and have her go on a test row/ride with Anne-Sophie. Unknown to them both disk brakes were rubbing really bad entire ride (someone forgot necessary shims under the caliper mount) which is why the overall travel speed was a little slow. I first saw Sarah when she gave a presentation at the Vancouver Mountain Film Festival 3 years ago detailing one of her ocean rows, and was really hooked.


Unfortunately we didn't have the camera on while picking her brains about the trials of long distance rowing but the gist of it is that her biggest challenges were related to being solo on the ocean with nothing around, and the depressing psychology of fighting currents and weather patterns that can make you loose ground even after a day of rowing. She thinks that with us travelling as a pair, on ground with electric assist, and with so many people and sights on the way that it will be a relative breeze. :D Well maybe not quite like that, but at least the challenges will be quite different.

Anyways up to here the trike has not yet been electrified. The final fabrication of the two front all-axle hub motors only came fully together last wednesday, the day before our first significant shakedown test ride from Vancouver to my hometown of Sooke. Here's the rest of the motor assembly details, which is a continuation of the 2nd video.
Currently recovering from the Suntrip race on a back to back tandem solar powered row/cycle trike. 550 watt solar roof, dual Grin All Axle hub motors, dual Phaserunner controllers, 12 LiGo batteries, and a whole wack of gear.

Now back in Vancouver with my Big Dummy Frame (yes This One, thanks ES!) with Grin all-axle front hub, Phaserunner controller, and 52V 19Ah Cellman triangle pack
My website: http://www.ebikes.ca
Please contact via email, info@ebikes.ca, rather than PMs, which are disabled

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by justin_le » May 30 2018 3:58am

rowbiker wrote:
May 15 2018 8:59am
How has the PASD "Row Bike" setting in the new CAv3.1 firmware been working with the rowing action? Which PAS sensor are you currently using on your stoker bottom bracket input assembly?
Even though I've got a rowing system on the trike, the person controlling the setup and with the CA giving feedback is the rider pedaling on the front with a conventional cadence sensor and throttle. At the moment we don't have any sensor on the stoke bottom bracket, but I do plan to install a THUN sensor if I can find one around with a suitable spindle length. This would only be for monitoring and logging the power output of the person rowing, it wouldn't be used for any control purposes.
Are there any addition tweaks to the current 3.1 firmware coming out in the near future or can I proceed with the existing version of the 3.1 firmware on my eRowbike project?
The existing rowbike PAS mode only has cadence sensing implemented, it doesn't have a proportional torque mode. That's on the long term drawing board but it's not at all a current priority. For this trip, since I'm rowing through a normal spindle I'll just be running a the rear CA as a normal torque sensor device for human power measurements, and not the Rowbike PAS device.

Warren wrote:
May 15 2018 12:27pm
On your cord drive; I used 1/8" braided kevlar, but you may have similar issues. Over time; water, oil and grit worked into the cord at the pulleys. They looked fine but eventually ground through the internal fibers and pulled apart. Take lots of spare line. It is much lighter than chain, and might come in handy for other stuff too.


Very interesting observations so thanks for sharing that Warren. Luckily I purchased a 200 foot spool of this UHMW dyneema cord, so will have plenty on hand. Did the grit and oil also ended up causing wear of the pulley grooves as well? I machined these current pulleys from a piece of round PVC plastic stock I had lying around, but it sounds like I may want to remake them from a material that's tougher against abrasion.
Currently recovering from the Suntrip race on a back to back tandem solar powered row/cycle trike. 550 watt solar roof, dual Grin All Axle hub motors, dual Phaserunner controllers, 12 LiGo batteries, and a whole wack of gear.

Now back in Vancouver with my Big Dummy Frame (yes This One, thanks ES!) with Grin all-axle front hub, Phaserunner controller, and 52V 19Ah Cellman triangle pack
My website: http://www.ebikes.ca
Please contact via email, info@ebikes.ca, rather than PMs, which are disabled

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by StuRat » May 30 2018 5:40am

justin_le wrote:
May 30 2018 3:58am
a material that's tougher against abrasion.
Maybe just some sacrificial telfon tape

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by Warren » May 30 2018 2:33pm

justin_le wrote:
May 30 2018 3:58am
Did the grit and oil also ended up causing wear of the pulley grooves as well? I machined these current pulleys from a piece of round PVC plastic stock I had lying around, but it sounds like I may want to remake them from a material that's tougher against abrasion.
Nope. Never had any problem with pulley wear. The turn around pulley, at the end of the boom, was the aluminum one from Thys. The block pulley was nylon, from McMaster-Carr, with a sealed ball bearing replacing the original bushing.

https://web.archive.org/web/20051224104 ... RM0854.jpg

https://www.mcmaster.com/#9466T61

On reflection, I do recall seeing a pattern resembling the braid of the cord, in the aluminum pulley.

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by justin_le » Jun 02 2018 3:29am

Warren wrote:
May 30 2018 2:33pm
Nope. Never had any problem with pulley wear. The turn around pulley, at the end of the boom, was the aluminum one from Thys. The block pulley was nylon, from McMaster-Carr, with a sealed ball bearing replacing the original bushing.
OK great to know. We ordered some of these Macmaster Carr pulleys but they didn't show up before the weekend so we'll see if I have time to make them into spares.

Speaking of time, we are almost there! Plan is to box up and ship the bike on Monday, which leaves just the next few days as our last opportunity to do tweaks and improvements. I'm looking to remake the solar roof with fiberglass covered 1" foam sheet rather than the aluminum framing that we have now, make wooden boxes for storing our cargo, and rebuild the front rowing pendulum to pivot on ball bearings and have better foot platforms and pulley systems with a narrower 'Q' factor.

It was just last week that we got all the critical pieces running to fully test out the entire system, with dual hub motors, tilting solar roof, 1.1 kWhr battery pack etc. And then took it on a ~260km round trip to my family home for the weekend.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zrv-NWO ... -T&index=8


The shakedown test ride was awesome and will be subject of the next video. It makes me want to be in France already :mrgreen:
Currently recovering from the Suntrip race on a back to back tandem solar powered row/cycle trike. 550 watt solar roof, dual Grin All Axle hub motors, dual Phaserunner controllers, 12 LiGo batteries, and a whole wack of gear.

Now back in Vancouver with my Big Dummy Frame (yes This One, thanks ES!) with Grin all-axle front hub, Phaserunner controller, and 52V 19Ah Cellman triangle pack
My website: http://www.ebikes.ca
Please contact via email, info@ebikes.ca, rather than PMs, which are disabled

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by Warren » Jun 02 2018 11:14am

justin_le wrote:
Jun 02 2018 3:29am
OK great to know. We ordered some of these Macmaster Carr pulleys but they didn't show up before the weekend so we'll see if I have time to make them into spares.
On the pulleys: The pulleys were too narrow to use a shoulder, and snap ring to trap the ball bearing. The nylon was too elastic for a press fit. The bearing would slide in the hole with use. I ended up using a Mototool, with a small grinding bit, to grind a small detent into the outer bearing race. I drilled and tapped the pulley, radially, for a small set screw to engage the detent. That worked for several thousand miles. It was still going strong when I sold the bike..

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by Warren » Jun 02 2018 11:59am

Just watched the video. You are going to have a fabulous time.

My Thys used a Shimano silent clutch hub, which had very little rotation before engaging. At 4 mph, on a steep hill, in my lowest gear, it was still frustrating having any lost stroke. I dreamed of zero loss.

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by zro-1 » Jun 02 2018 8:37pm

I can't wait to see the shakedown test ride video. Watching the build progress and trials in development has been really awesome.

Will you be posting any video of your progress during the actual Suntrip solar ebike race?
~01~

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Electric Bicycle Brewery

Post by justin_le » Jun 06 2018 4:35am

zro-1 wrote:
Jun 02 2018 8:37pm
I can't wait to see the shakedown test ride video. Watching the build progress and trials in development has been really awesome.
Hey glad to hear that some people have been enjoying this. The actual shakedown test ride video got backburned a bit in an effort to create a short and sweet less technical video for a more mainstream audience than the build sequence, which we just released here:


You'll notice the at the 27 second mark we ride past the "Electric Bicycle Brewing Co."
https://youtu.be/eDzWWbBK_Vw?t=27s

THAT'S OUR OLD SHOP!! When we left the building I was a little miffed that this brewpub explosion was a large reason why all the commercial rents in that neighbourhood were shooting through the roof. But when the guys who moved in heard that the previous tenants were an electric bicycle company, they thought that was too cool and decided to make that the entire theme of the business, with psychedelic graphics and eclectic beer offerings. I didn't realize that they were open already since there were lots of permitting headaches so that was nice to see the place fully packed.
Currently recovering from the Suntrip race on a back to back tandem solar powered row/cycle trike. 550 watt solar roof, dual Grin All Axle hub motors, dual Phaserunner controllers, 12 LiGo batteries, and a whole wack of gear.

Now back in Vancouver with my Big Dummy Frame (yes This One, thanks ES!) with Grin all-axle front hub, Phaserunner controller, and 52V 19Ah Cellman triangle pack
My website: http://www.ebikes.ca
Please contact via email, info@ebikes.ca, rather than PMs, which are disabled

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The 11th Hour

Post by justin_le » Jun 06 2018 5:03am

This isn't the kind of thing that we should be doing in the days before the trip departure, but for whatever reason I felt compelled.

First was the solar roof. The aluminum structure that has been on all along is supporting two 200W panels that I got from EVTV here
http://store.evtv.me/proddetail.php?prod=200wsolarpanel
(actually from a suggestion from Warren on this thread)

But on reading the suntrip rules more carefully I realized that Tandems are allowed up to 550 watts of solar on the bike while moving, and that extra 37% could be useful especially on cloudy days. After some inspiration from a guy Mark Havran who I met recently at the maker faire I decided to have a stab making a new roof using fiberglass reinforced construction foam. As something that could be stiff and light and support the panels over their entire surface so that they aren't subject to microcracks from all the flexing under vibration.
Fiberglassing.jpg
Fiberglassing.jpg (168.52 KiB) Viewed 790 times
Fiberglass Closeup.jpg
Fiberglass Closeup.jpg (210.53 KiB) Viewed 790 times
This here is just one of the new roof structures.
Fiberglass Roof Panel.jpg
Fiberglass Roof Panel.jpg (205.26 KiB) Viewed 790 times

There are two that will go end to end, and stacked together like that we're almost 14 feet long, it's a HUGE structure when you see them together, but by doing it in two pieces like this we'll be able to ship it in a basic oversized box OK, while the single piece aluminum roof was too long.

Unfortunately I can't put 3 of these 200W panels end to end since that's over the limit, but I also couldn't find any 150 or 50 watt panels with the right dimensions. I ordered a bunch of spare Maxeon solar cells some weeks ago but they haven't arrived yet, so in a pinch I took two of these 100W Sunpower panels with the cells in a 4x8 grid

Image

and then cut off two rows of cells to make them into 75 watt panels in a 4x6 cell grid. We used some carving tools to access the cell contacts from between the layers of EVA and then solder new terminals to reconnect the cells on the end. I just finished these today and it seems like the trick worked OK!
Solar Cell Back Access.jpg
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Custom Solar Contact Tab.jpg
Custom Solar Contact Tab.jpg (147.9 KiB) Viewed 790 times
The other major change was to the rowing pendulum/pulley structure. The prototype I've been using has 2 pulleys but the string goes very close to the rear wheel and there is no way to fit either a fender (certainly a good idea) or a larger tire (probably a good idea in bumpy terrain). So I rebuilt this last night using thin walled 4130 tubing with 3 idler pulleys to direct the string further to the side of the tire and give fender room clearance.
Spaceframe Rowing Rig.jpg
Spaceframe Rowing Rig.jpg (249.91 KiB) Viewed 790 times
Initially it was a much simpler structure, but tests showed it was too flexible when rowing hard or when the bike was cornering, and so I kept adding tubes and tig welding them to make it stiffer until getting the pretty wild shape above. We also upgraded the pulleys themselves.
Warren wrote:The block pulley was nylon, from McMaster-Carr, with a sealed ball bearing replacing the original bushing.
Our order of these pulleys from McMaster-Carr came in yesterday. The groove depth and diameter of these pulleys is just perfect, so thanks Warren for pointing them out to us. I didn't have a lathe tool that would make a nice curved groove contour from the string and these totally fit the bill once we made a ball bearing hub for them.
Better Idlers.jpg
Better Idlers.jpg (141.83 KiB) Viewed 790 times
I'm still now up all night making a plywood cargo box for holding our stuff between the two seats, and then tomorrow we really do need to box and ship it all to France!
Currently recovering from the Suntrip race on a back to back tandem solar powered row/cycle trike. 550 watt solar roof, dual Grin All Axle hub motors, dual Phaserunner controllers, 12 LiGo batteries, and a whole wack of gear.

Now back in Vancouver with my Big Dummy Frame (yes This One, thanks ES!) with Grin all-axle front hub, Phaserunner controller, and 52V 19Ah Cellman triangle pack
My website: http://www.ebikes.ca
Please contact via email, info@ebikes.ca, rather than PMs, which are disabled

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by PaulD » Jun 06 2018 9:38am

Awesome work, Justin. Down to the wire, I love it.
It takes a lot of skill and ingenuity to do last minute builds, let alone make something reliable enough for this journey!

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by fechter » Jun 06 2018 2:16pm

Looking good!

Just curious, how long do you think the trip will take? I think it said the distance was something like 12,000km. Boy, my butt would be really sore after that.
"One test is worth a thousand opinions"

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by Snickers » Jun 06 2018 3:37pm

According to previous Suntrip, the best can ride a arround 200-320km (120-200miles) per day. So the first group will ride the 12000-14000 km (7500-8750miles) in arround 40-50 days. For the majority, this will take more than 2-3 months.

Just, just in time! :roll:
Have a nice trip to France...
Last edited by Snickers on Jun 07 2018 11:42am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: My Sun Trip Bike, Back to Back Tandem Trike with Rowing Generator, Pedals, +Solar

Post by tomjasz » Jun 07 2018 12:26am

Life without young adventurers, to live there antics in our dreams, would make being old boorish. Great thread! I’m amazed you took the time! Good on you!
AND, An amazing young woman you’ve been lucky enough to meet.
(Same luck hear 46 years ago!)

Available should you need to adopt a grandfather...
Thanks Justin_le we're here thanks to you. All the best to the mods for their tireless work keeping it on an even keel.

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