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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 11/19/2012 :  15:05:11  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Some may remember that I did try off-roading, riding MetaPhysic dual 700c converted to MetaPhrastic 29er (full-carbon disc fork, 33mm knoppy tires, less reclined seat, SPD pedals):



That didn't went too well, front of bike was bouncing everywhere when trying to keep speed on roots, rocks or sharp bumps. And my back didn't like inadequate cushion of Ventisit so called that 6h race quit after little over 4 hours.

Since completed FWD-MBB Vendetta clone successfully it was time to start planning what kind of off-road bent would be better. About spring time noticed Craig's off-roader built by Rob English:



This looks promising, big wheels, longer wheelbase, no heel clearance issues. But USS... not my thing. Maybe something like this:



Remote steering, to avoid waving arms while steering which has impact to balance.

Craig's and Rob's rear suspension looks very interesting:




I like that. Keeps rear shock in nice place, and as Craig later told me it's designed to have different progression than typical designs.

Planned to get somewhere aluminium donors for little lighter frame, but instead got two cheap "walmart" kind of bikes and one little better quality one. Time to have plenty of cutting discs to angle grinder and start working:



Here most of main frame is put together, compared to MP in winter trim. Next rear fork:






And almost ready frame in its own wheels:



Next to make pivoting system for rear suspension and position it after fork pivot and add last missing piece of frame. But before it did finish remote steering while waiting rear shock's shipping:




Drilled hole to best possible place in fork shoulder, then tapped it and using blue Loctite put piece of stainless threaded stud. Remote end has chopped fork where welded stud for joint.

Then rear pivoting system. Don't have access to milling machines to fabricated pieces from 3mm aluminium plate, suitable ID tubing and welded those together:




I'm using ABEC 7 inline roller skate bearings as had those available and local bearing shop didn't have anything better to offer.

Then did arm from fork to triangle and started fitting rear suspension details together.




Seat fits well above shock, that's Rock Shocks 190mm one with 50mm travel. That tube behind triangle is donor frame's seat tube, decided to do removable and adjustable upper mount support for seat:




Here is shock front mount and seat mount ready:




After completing rear suspension mechanisms measured its travel and it's about 170mm or little more. Fork is 130mm.

And it's ready for virgin test-ride:



This rides very well. I can even pedal no hands ! Steering is good and turning radius about good enough for my kind of use. Suspension is very good, no pogo, while pedaling no "kick" to pedals when suspension does its job. This can keep serious speed in rough terrain.

It's little heavy, suitcase scale stopped to 19.95 kg. It could loose weight about 1 kg as I have very heavy Quando wheelhubs and could use couple of lighter components like threaded stud in remote steering and tiller setup. Maybe I'll keep engine's fat % in control instead.

Didn't use hydraulic disc brake @ rear, did put it to front as tubing was just about long enough there. And availability of Hayes compatible tubing & fittings is not so good... decided to order BB7 road brakeset for MP and took its MTB one here.

No much invested, needed extra sturdy threadless headset, rims, tires and rear shock as new. Also got SRAM 7sp cassette to fit modern disc hub and so able to use 3x7 $himano RD's and original Grip Shift's from -90's MTB. Bought fork and hydraulic disc brakes used.

Now I have two bents for winter season: MP with friction tires when having harder snowy or icy conditions, and this off-roader for wet or more snowy courses.

Target is to iron out bugs before next spring's 6h off-road race.

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010

Speedbiker
human power expert

USA
3835 Posts

Posted - 11/19/2012 :  17:36:13  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mika is getting pretty darn good at bike building. Seems like he just built the Vendetta clone. And now he designs and builds an offroad bent. And I think he rebuilt his van, too.
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warren
human power expert

USA
6475 Posts

Posted - 11/19/2012 :  20:18:23  Show Profile  Visit warren's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Wow, nice job Mika! Nice straight chainline.
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 11/19/2012 :  23:17:21  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by warren

Wow, nice job Mika! Nice straight chainline.



Jep. That was one of my design target, replicate MP's almost straight chainline. Used Optima plastic toothed power idler and former M5 lowracer's power idler in return side.

To my surprise rear suspension is not mostly affecting return chain to scrape bottom of fork's pivot point. Planned to put former M5 return chain tube there.

I'll likely upgrade derailleurs and trigger shifters to SRAM X.7 before spring, RD will be long cage. Helps even more.

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 11/19/2012 :  23:21:15  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Speedbiker

Mika is getting pretty darn good at bike building. Seems like he just built the Vendetta clone. And now he designs and builds an offroad bent. And I think he rebuilt his van, too.



Thanks Thom. Maybe I need to do another thread for Vendetta build.

Van's rebuilt. Serious sheetmetal rust removal from side and rear doors, painting. Run like crap because of aggressive camshaft and new ECM firmware, progressive self-learning tuning ongoing. Did pass smoke test for my surprise.

Next to weld new very special headers from stainless or equivalent tubing.

Now it doesn't fill whole garage so joy to have plenty of open space in garage...

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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Speedbiker
human power expert

USA
3835 Posts

Posted - 11/20/2012 :  04:20:53  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I missd the part where you said you can ride no handed. Very good. The similar bike Charlie is the only other remote steer bent I can recall that you can ride no handed.

Must be some kind of Finnish racing van!
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 11/20/2012 :  05:30:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Speedbiker

I missd the part where you said you can ride no handed. Very good. The similar bike Charlie is the only other remote steer bent I can recall that you can ride no handed.


Yes, riding without pedaling no-handed is smooth. When pedaling with smooth circles that works too. I was positively surprised as it gives more accuracy for steering in tight places.

quote:
Originally posted by SpeedbikerMust be some kind of Finnish racing van!



I wish. It has potential to have 400+ hp, now might have most of former 200 in very limited load/rev range. Not good behaving enough to let wife drive it yet. Doesn't spontaneously stall so getting better.

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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sean costin
human power expert

Lesotho
2007 Posts

Posted - 11/22/2012 :  03:19:04  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Inspirational thread in many ways. I am curious about your donor tubing. Please elaborate. Homebuilding always makes me smile.
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2012 :  01:21:09  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by sean costin

Inspirational thread in many ways. I am curious about your donor tubing. Please elaborate. Homebuilding always makes me smile.



Friend of mine was scrapping three bikes. Two of them were from our "Wallmart", that is cheapest possible, other was 26" MTB and another girls 24" bikes, both called "Yosemite". Their frames had almost NACA airfoil shaped main beams. Third bike is men's 28" which is of valued brand "Nopsa".

Those tubings were used as follows:
  • BB is from 24" frame's stock BB shell, beam toward head tube
  • Head tube and beam from 26" frame, beam cut to take 24" frame's 1" head tube used for remote steering, ends to 26" frame's BB used as rear fork pivot
  • From fork pivot is 24" frame's top tube and its seat tube, inside seat tube is top of 28" frame's seat tube
  • Rear fork is done so that DS is from 28" frame's main and top tubes (better quality steel), NDS from 26" and 24" top tubes
  • Seat upper structure is built from 28" seat stays and saddle tube
  • FD post from 28" top or seatpost tubing.

Stem is build from 1" aluminium one by cutting handlebar "arm" out, shaping it to round, reversing long bolt mounting. Then banging aluminium tube over top of stem and then welded to place. Same for handlebar "arm" on top.

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010

Edited by - mhelander on 12/12/2012 01:30:49
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2012 :  01:29:15  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
As everything's working great, was time to put it to pieces for stripping donor's paint and put metallic black with varnish on:



Since there has been many times discussion about weight penalty of suspension, following list might be of interest:
  • 3.10 kg - main frame
  • 1.95 kg - rear fork
  • 0.65 kg - upper seat support
  • ====> 5.7 kg "just" frame
  • 1.75 kg - complete stem + grips + shifters + brake handles + all wires + Hayes hydraulic front brake
  • 1.00 kg - diy carbon+nomex seat with neck rest and cushions
  • ====> 8.55 kg "just" framekit without front fork and components
  • 0.60 kg - remote steering, complete (+headset + beam + little stuff)
  • ====> 9.15 kg framekit with remote steering, without ...
  • 1.25 kg - rear suspension (170mm travel), complete (air shock, pivot components, square BB as pivot, little stuff)
  • 1.95 kg - front fork (130mm) with heavy duty headset and spacers
  • ====> 12.30 kg fully suspended framekit, without ...
  • 2.70 kg - 57-622 rear wheel, complete
  • 1.95 kg - 57-559 front wheel, complete
  • 1.50 kg - rest of components and little stuff (chain, derailleurs, lamp holder, etc)
  • ?.?? kg - $himano triple crankset with square BB and pedals (forget to record its weight)
  • ====>> 17.45 kg + complete crankset.

Just organized weights so that it's easy to see what makes weight of fully suspended, remote steered bent. Whole bike weighted 19.95 kg just before 1st real leg, had different pedals.

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010

Edited by - mhelander on 12/12/2012 02:30:43
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alevand
human power expert

USA
3551 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2012 :  04:28:34  Show Profile  Visit alevand's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Nice. I like the seat position. I like a lower bottom bracket,though, but the shorter wheel base is more manoeuvrable. I like to pull up on the handle bars, gets the ham strings working when climbing hills. I saw a youtube video a few years back where a guy had a similarly suspended bike and was going over logs with it on a single track course, also on a race. Good luck on the race.

C:
Tony Levand
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2012 :  05:24:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by alevand

Nice. I like the seat position. I like a lower bottom bracket,though, but the shorter wheel base is more manoeuvrable. I like to pull up on the handle bars, gets the ham strings working when climbing hills. I saw a youtube video a few years back where a guy had a similarly suspended bike and was going over logs with it on a single track course, also on a race. Good luck on the race.


Thanks Tony !

Lower BB might be easier on off-road, I still prefer to maintain as much my road ergonomics as possible. And avoid hard heel and crank interference.

I did also plenty of pulling on then handlebars while riding my MetaPhysic off-road. It's SWB and quite agile but that plays against its ability to climb.

This longer off-roader goes steeper inclines without pulling at all (Garmin 500 recorded way past 18% and average of 15% incline there). That was steep enough that 25t chainring driving 28t cog in rear wheel equipped with 57-622 Racing Ralph was barely enough in plenty of torque to get up on loose gravel. No way to work as well on SWB.

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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Speedbiker
human power expert

USA
3835 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2012 :  06:45:24  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mika, let's see it all painted and together :-)
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 12/12/2012 :  22:58:18  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Speedbiker

Mika, let's see it all painted and together :-)



Sure ! Got it finished very late last night... had extra 1-2 hours of "fun" fixing $himano Deore DX RD because of broken B-screw plate, which was likely not hardened correctly and thus because of bent screw installed badly last time.

Did rode it to work in blizzard just below freezing. Works but some minor adjustments to RD for gears 1-3 and loosening threadless headset.

Will take picture in daylight if it's not snowing, otherwise later.

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 12/14/2012 :  09:09:05  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Here is one snapped with "better" camera and flash:



Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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Speedbiker
human power expert

USA
3835 Posts

Posted - 12/14/2012 :  10:05:23  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
That looks awesome.
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 12/14/2012 :  10:29:02  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Speedbiker

That looks awesome.



It even rides better than looks, fast, slow, steep uphills, in snow & ice. Even total n00bs ride it easily (after inital few feet (push to start when clipped in).

I'm happy and proud owner !

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010

Edited by - mhelander on 12/14/2012 10:29:43
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 02/21/2013 :  04:23:49  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Here's this bent in "finalized" form:



Old gearing is gone, replaced by SRAM X.7 triggers and RD, X.5 FD and PG-970 11-32 cassette.

New wheelset built from WTB LaserDisc Lite hubs, DT-Swiss XR-400 26" and XM-490 29er rims, 32 3-cross DT-Swiss Competition 2.0/1.8 double butted spokes.

Tiller extension tubing broke again from middle of weld seam, that's re-welded with V-openings in forward/rearward and much higher current. Shouldn't break again from seam.

Steerer and FD post chopped to proper length. Bottle holder added to support my almost metric century group rides and CREE lights with lens for better & wider visibility in dark snowy MUP's (and off-road).

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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Speedbiker
human power expert

USA
3835 Posts

Posted - 02/21/2013 :  07:59:47  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mika, get it all dialed in so I know what to copy next winter :-)
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LongJohn
recumbent guru

China
581 Posts

Posted - 02/21/2013 :  08:07:34  Show Profile  Visit LongJohn's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Can I order one?
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 02/21/2013 :  09:16:13  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
It's dialed in already !

Participated to cyclo cross type of race 13th Feb and had really good speed there. Top guns had dual suspended and light MTB's which they carry faster in loose snow than me wearing road shoes, plenty on clip-in problems too.

I almost asked offer from one frame builder for batch of these, with adjustability and done using aluminium...

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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warren
human power expert

USA
6475 Posts

Posted - 02/21/2013 :  09:50:22  Show Profile  Visit warren's Homepage  Reply with Quote
That looks great, and I'm happy to hear it is working well. The rear suspension looks like it was complicated to build.
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 02/21/2013 :  13:45:52  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by warren

That looks great, and I'm happy to hear it is working well. The rear suspension looks like it was complicated to build.



Yeah, it was. Added little over week of spare time building compared to Vendetta clone.

But was well worth it, thanks to Craig and Rob for great design. I just executed it along my own design thinking and am very happy about it. Like today when rode down slippery icy stairs...

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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mhelander
recumbent enthusiast

Finland
384 Posts

Posted - 05/03/2013 :  05:53:07  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Little bit of status update for this bent.

It's been ridden over 2300 km's worth of winter riding since last fall. It's quite quick on hard surfaces, especially when converted wheels to tubeless using ghetto method and using 0.9 bar front 1.7 bar rear pressures. It was good for one Strava KOM on bike path course for my amusement (and likely surprise to former record holders). Only couple of legs on my other winter capable bent, MetaPhysic.

Rear suspension linkage nuts tightened maybe twice, and upper rear shock threaded stud replaced as it broke to half because of fatigue. I need to get more tensile bolts there. Remote steering stud in fork shoulder has loosened in latest two legs, let's see how to fix that.

Weight distribution is about 38% front and 62% rear. Did try to push suspension to its limits recently and to date best is 100mm for front and about same for rear.

Shimano "boat anchor" BB has been replaced by FSA UlTiMax which has square taper titanium axle. Old road pedals have been replaced by Time Atac XC8 Carbon ones which are exceptionally good when need to clip-in after stepping on snow, gravel, sand, dirt etc.

Current weight is the same 19.9 kg despite all new components (sans SRAM X.7 triggers) are lighter.

Chainline is nice, straight and efficient. No bog, no kick-back from suspension. But power idler is so near to my cycling pants that its broken side is snapping fabric. Had to install new solid one and broken will go back to lowracer. Shimano round chainrings are to be replaced by 10% oval, currently installed are 25t and 34t. Biggest, if in need for it ever, will be 43t.

Cheers,
-Mika

Diy bents: Full-suspended off-roader @ 2012, Vendetta clone @ 2012
Commerials: MetaPhysic 700c @ 2011, M5 CrMo Lowracer @ 2010
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alevand
human power expert

USA
3551 Posts

Posted - 05/03/2013 :  08:26:12  Show Profile  Visit alevand's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I use a piece of 30 mil lexan shield over the idler to keep my shorts from getting wrapped up in it.

C:
Tony Levand
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Speedbiker
human power expert

USA
3835 Posts

Posted - 05/03/2013 :  18:22:02  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mika might be the world's best ice and snow recumbent builder. Then again, he lives near the arctic circle.
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