This is a non-profit compendium of car free living and how to build a small electric vehicle with a power system that can climb the steep hills with at least 450lbs total combined weight at a legal wattage. You will not find anything about how to build a fast bike here.
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Front wheel drive
Quote from TOM TRAYLOR:
Over the years I have
tried many different variations.
The way a bike handles
depends on a lot of variables, but there are three that seem to effect handling
more than anything else and they are: the steering head angle, the trail,
and the rake.
I have found that a
steering head angle of 62° to 65°, a trail of 4"- 4½", and a rake of
0 (zero) or even slightly negative, has worked very well for me. These numbers
are not terribly critical with my bike design. Good handling to one person
might be unacceptable to another. I have built bikes well outside these
parameters and have had acceptable results.
Stay away from shallow
steering head angles though.
My results are based on
bikes with the bottom bracket at about the same height as the
This photo shows that it
may be possible to build a front wheel drive bike without the over powering
“pedal steer” that the Cruise bikes have too much of. The crank should be
closer to a vertical line from the axle than the handle bars are. However it
relies on counter weight, how much can you push with your leg? If the crank
were located at the steering axis, then there would be virtually no side
The Cruze bikes have
more pedal steer than any other, all the force put into the pedals have to be
pulled back at the handle bars, even a Flevo bike would be easier to ride. NOTE
that none of these videos show any of these machines climbing hills. It would
take a good low gear with fast crank spinning to climb hills on these.