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Matthew Martin Posted - 09/19/2017 : 20:42:30
Hi, I am a high school student who has been interested in the concept of streamliners and their construction. The question that has been bothering me is not knowing how to attach a windscreen (canopy;plastic view port) to a fiberglass fairing almost seamlessly without the use of tape. I have been working tirelessly on a cad model of a bike that I hope to build. The bike is a somewhat practical streamliner that is high enough to be moderately visible in traffic. I need to be able to attach a large vacuumed formed windscreen to go with my design.As I don't know how to insert my image ( not online so no url) my windscreen needs to be similar to the velotilt
25   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
carolina Posted - 12/14/2017 : 23:50:53

Speedy Posted - 12/14/2017 : 21:34:55
Female molds made with CNC machining works well and is a great time saver.
Female molds done by hand is just about the most difficult approach possible.

Your hard earned experience may vary.

carolina Posted - 12/14/2017 : 17:32:42
Female molds: re read post above i wrote another paragraph.

Oh yea, definitely female molds with your two profile gage. Once you have L & R joggle and the way u want it spray the styrene duratec and then duratec grey primer. Sand and buff. Your in bizz.

CALL FIBERGLAST.COM , TALK TO EM, TELL EM WHAT YOUR DOING. THEY WILL GIVE YOU SOME GREAT FINAL TIPS TOO. You will own the molds and make one side per day. This process is alot easier, think it out. You can get your shape down, you have pc and knowhow. I just free hand with profile gages and blocking down duratec.

Maybe these members will chime in about lwb or lowracer. I sure dont know, even though I built a lowracer l like and mod’ing the boom soon.

Matthew Martin Posted - 12/14/2017 : 17:21:22
So what you are saying Carolina...correct me if I am wrong, is to start with the female molds and just make layups from that, as opposed to making a male plug and getting the molds off of that?

My plan (general)
1. build up a steel frame lwb bike
2. build a coroplast mock up fairing for my bike and test the shape.
3. If it works as it is intended, start the build a male plug
4. make female molds from plug.
5.lay up final fairing
6. mount fairing to bike.
7.create plastic oven
8. form my windows
9. assemble
10. electronics(lights brakes,Etc.)
carolina Posted - 12/14/2017 : 15:21:28
Matthew: what warren wrote two shells make 1 shell/fairing. Over a bicycle.

What i wrote, has not been done. It makes two quick molds (L & R) very simple. Then lay carbon & innegra in both and pop out and trim next day. Warren stated how to mount shells faring to the recumbent 2 wheeler.

Ask em which steers best on track, lwb or lowracer.

What is your shell or cover of your race bike made out of???

Give a simple listing of what u are doing. There are no short cuts. Maybe some techniques that pay you back somehow or save money.


Then members can chime in. They know what u are building.

Man, if you had couple blocks of boat dock foam, can of each duratec product, lil’ ebow power equals 2 quick L & R molds. Spray the 2 duratec’s on, start sanding 24 hours later. Then buff. Layup left side after dinner, lol yes!! Right side next night.

Speedbiker Posted - 12/14/2017 : 10:38:49
Warren, good job managing the forum.

I believe young Matthew will do quite well. And what a future!
alevand Posted - 12/14/2017 : 10:38:27

There are some bike part cad files available online, that can just be plunked into the model assembly, without having to make them from scratch:


Tony Levand
Speedy Posted - 12/14/2017 : 08:47:00
If your interested in any shortcuts to building this project ...
I have a PDF of the Pursuit and a few bits to start with. Rear stays, dropouts seat, forks, handlebars, front fairing etc.
Everything is "new, old stock" that's been on the shelf for 9~10 years.
You'll need to assemble and weld the main frame.
Contact me off line if interested.
warren Posted - 12/14/2017 : 07:57:17
Yes, it's still a streamliner with a frame in a fairing.
Matthew Martin Posted - 12/14/2017 : 05:35:37
Your right Carolina that was my original plan and I will most likely still do that. After hearing of a lighter option I thought it would work for what I wanted to do, Which it might, however I dont have to time to work out a moocoque design for my bike. Plus I will be able to take the bike out of the fairing and have n unfaired bike.

Would it still not be considered a streamliner? Larry Lem has pretty much created "speed bikes" by placing a frame in a fairing.
Speedbiker Posted - 12/13/2017 : 23:01:50
Hey Mike, I just remembered. Check your email....
carolina Posted - 12/13/2017 : 22:12:44
Matthew l thought your were building a 2 wheel bike with a shell on it.

Twill Carbon is 16$ more per yard than twill fg. I think extra 100$ in a shell u work months on is nothing and 4 yards of innegra is 40$.

Iam not sure what your are building.

A rutan body is a rutan body with no frame. I own an fly a varieze.

My velo is a frameless carbon unibody.

A ice or azub trike with a challenger body on it matthew is a trike with a challenger body on it. Period.

Iam not at all sure what you are building.


alevand Posted - 12/13/2017 : 19:31:59
Thats great, Matt, the first real hardware. Low Q factor isn't as important in a LWB street bike as it is in a SWB bike, because of clearance needed in the fairing to turn the front wheel.

Good luck. Looking forward in seeing the final design.
Speedbiker Posted - 12/13/2017 : 18:58:00
The COS was quite a simple machine and worked right out of the box. The only real change was adding a canopy and landing gear for club racing. That bike has been raced at BM numerous times, hpv races, road time trails, the Belle Isle ultra, and done fun bike path rides. And if someone as dumb as me can build one, anyone can! Especially someone with Matthew's CAD skills.
Matthew Martin Posted - 12/13/2017 : 18:42:52
Well I just committed to this project with the purchase of a new groupset.

I ordered the Shimano Tiagra 4700, which was a good price. Also has a q factor of 150mm so it will fit my design
alevand Posted - 12/13/2017 : 14:42:17
A Monocoque (tub bike) can be built in several ways, but they all have two layers of skin in the shell separated by a core, either foam, nomex honeycomb or balsa. This is called sandwich construction. The sandwich can be either the whole half shell section or individual members. Connections are usually made by removing some of the core and potting in tapped fastener inserts with epoxy. Depending on the connection the skin can be built up also, called a doubler. These connections can be referred to as hard points. The sub frames are attached to the hard points. These types of bikes are usually front wheel drive. There are examples in the Projects page.

Tub Bike: http://www.recumbents.com/wisil/wianecki/frank-n-liner/default.htm

You can meet Warren in Cooper City, Florida during the Challenge races held in February (assuming he attends this year).

Tony Levand
Matthew Martin Posted - 12/13/2017 : 14:23:13
Thank you
warren Posted - 12/13/2017 : 14:14:47
It sounds like your best option is to design and build a fully framed LWB bike that's designed to fit your streamliner. As Speedy notes, using 2" x .049 4130 tubing for your main frame tube should work well. Then you can ride it around and tweak the bike while you are building the body. With your design goals of 70 lb or less a frame-in-body 'liner will work well for you. Typically the bodies are held to the bikes with clamps in 3 locations:
1) In the front of the shell (for you probably integrated with the head tube assembly), typically a horizontal tube 90 degrees to the frame is glassed into the body.
2) Clamps on the frame bottom tube (usually under the seat) attach to the brackets glassed into bottom of the shell.
3) Brackets on the frame close to the rear dropouts stabilize the rear of the fairing.

In this way the fairing is well connected to the bike.

Also a fairing that's made of 2 layers of 8oz fiberglass and is reinforced in the high stress areas like around the mounting brackets, doors, and floor should produce a shell that's in your desired weight range. The Barracuda streamliner that I built around 1998 was built this way and is still being raced and occasionally crashed (and is still fast!).

With a budget of $1500 you will need to scrounge bike parts.

Matthew Martin Posted - 12/13/2017 : 13:44:03
I am aware of Duratech and am aware of the mold making process...I would be a fool to even think about this project without first understanding at least that.

I should have specified my question. Just to put this out Cf is out of the question for this bike. I should have asked how to mount sub frames (steel in my case) into a body to make it monocoque, and how do I ensure that the body will be able to handle the stress of pedaling.

In regard to Alevand, I would not think about this project with out first making sure I have the skills to do so. I have made a recumbent which I spent months designing and to my pleasant surprise it work perfectly. I have made other bikes as well that are not relevant to a recumbent forum, and yes I have had failures. I want to use this project as an opportunity to learn composites. The reason I have not settled on a final design is I really cant afford to have a project that I will have invested fifteen hundred dollars or so into to fail. Anybody that has ever had a large project knows that planning helps so, that's what I have been doing, creating a daily in depth schedule for this project. I am starting this project on the strong belief that this bike will not take years to build, However if it does, so be it.
alevand Posted - 12/13/2017 : 12:28:55
Maybe not for the human power experts as on your team. But for a single 18 yo starting member who hasn't built anything in his life to do this? How many man hours for the Cos? Are you still tweaking it? You seriously think he can do this http://www.recumbents.com/wisil/cos2/our_story.htm in 2 months? HA! This blog is older than that already and he doesn't even settled on a concept design yet! Thom, You need to get your feet back on the ground.

Originally posted by Speedbiker

We designed and built the monocoque structured Coslinger Spcl in about 2 months. It was the first bike to ever run at BM, and the 3rd bike to exceed 70mph. Details of which are in this websites build area. It is still occasionally raced after 17 years. Using the Burt Rutan method I built the "Tub" in 1998 and it was the first mindless composite tube hpv. It took two weeks to build, complete. It DOES NOT take months or years to design and build a monocoque chassis hpv.

Tony Levand
Speedbiker Posted - 12/13/2017 : 11:08:10
We designed and built the monocoque structured Coslinger Spcl in about 2 months. It was the first bike to ever run at BM, and the 3rd bike to exceed 70mph. Details of which are in this websites build area. It is still occasionally raced after 17 years. Using the Burt Rutan method I built the "Tub" in 1998 and it was the first mindless composite tube hpv. It took two weeks to build, complete. It DOES NOT take months or years to design and build a monocoque chassis hpv.
alevand Posted - 12/13/2017 : 10:39:19
A monocoque bike is very involved and will take years to design and build. That is fine if you only want to design and build. If you want to ride the bike, then start with a simple steel framed bike, then add a coroplast fairing for testing.

Tony Levand
carolina Posted - 12/13/2017 : 09:53:07
Anything is daunting but everyone wants it done right now or temper tantrum. Enjoy building or do without.

I had thought about using duratec products from fiberglast.com /youtube channel.

They have products that guard styrene foam the grey duratec primer goes over that. Your done after sanding & buffing. Then wax with tr mold release wax 7 times. (Yes tr on ebay too).

Some way to spray then sanding and buffing, then lay carbon in your female mold. I have a pro painter who has booth in his backyard so we spray my stuff after hours or weekends. Yay! Iam lucky in that department.

Your challenge is to shape a left and right female mold in foam. And sand in the joggle of both pieces to mate together. DURATEC MAKES IT VERY SIMPLE AFTER YOU REACH THE SHAPE YOU WANT. And your head and leg holes for your two wheeler. Or cut them out when complete. After you spray the thick foam protector, then spray the duratec grey primer you can lay some glass mat on other side of your 2 female molds for strength.

Once buffed you can make as many streamliner cover kits as you want. Hell put em on ebay. Lol.

THE KEY IS THE DURATEC PRODUCTS, WATCH MANY OF THE YOUTUBES ON THEIR CHANNEL. Duratec takes the work out. Get a 12” & 6” profile gage’s from ebay. You will need those to shape your left and right female mold.

Here: educate yourself by watching this channel’s videos


Matthew Martin Posted - 12/13/2017 : 05:34:26
my goal with the weight of this bike is to be 70 or lower (Lighter that a standard quest) . I can upgrade the fairing parts in the future to Cf. Monocoque construction seems daunting, and I really have not seen much on how to do this. It may be worth the extra time to make it monocoque. Could any of you guys help me understand the monocoque design process?

Speedy Posted - 12/12/2017 : 12:14:43
Coyote is a monocoque construction with some titanium sub-structures to hold the pedals and wheels.
The Rotator Pursuit and Interceptor models are probably the ones to study as they were "body on frame" designs.
Best weight was 28 pounds for titanium.
35 to 40 for cro/mo steel.
2" x .049 works fine.

Steve Delaire

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