Sunday, November 15, 2009

Homebuilt Long Wheelbase Recumbent

I knew I was in trouble when I started reading the homebuilders forum at I am an incurable do-it-yourselfer. I love buying tools. Homebuilding a bike gave me an excuse to get a MIG welder and a MAP torch.

I've been very interested in the new Rans Xstream and I wanted to try my hand at building a bike from recycled parts. Here we have a Yahoo group called Freecycle. You can only post things that you are giving away, or you can ask for stuff. I posted an ad saying I wanted any old bikes. One person gave me three bikes, one of them a very nice Ross MTB bike that a neighbor had left with him when they moved, and two of his daughters old bikes. I picked up an old ten speed in my neighborhood that someone had set out for trash. The Ross was rideable and the one thing I really liked was the center pull cantilever brakes. It had 6 speed SIS components as well. Not high end, but they work.

I copied my Strada's Euromesh seat using 1/2" EMT. The top tube is oval, from one of the WalMart girls bikes. The bottom tube fit in the top tube which makes it very strong when welded. The bottom tubes are from the Ross, again the smaller tube is in the larger, and I used one short piece of tubing from the ten speed. The rear triangle is Ross on top and WM on the bottom so that I could use the rear brake from the Ross. The BB is from the Ross, so I used the WM bike for the bottom of the rear triangle.

The riser is 3/4" EMT. I brazed on part of the Ross's headset to hold the bars. I bent the handlebars from an aluminum tent pole that I had. I really like the feel of tweeners on my Bacchetta, and just copied the setup.

I just rode it around the neighborhood. The wheel flop at real slow speeds goes away as soon as you get going. I like it! I'm going to strip it down and grind the welds and paint it with Krylon Hammered spray paint. These are the before pics:

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