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  1. #1
    Senior Member sailor2's Avatar
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    Question Modifying a pedicab?

    Soon (this fall) I'll need to haul 3 kids for a 5.5 miles, drop two kids, next 1 kid for 1.5 mile and myself for 3 more miles commute (and sometimes back in reverse too)
    Current mode of operation is a Schwinn/InStep two kids trailer and a rear seat (Bobike Maxi).
    But kids are getting bigger and I'm guessing next year the neighbor girl will be too big for the trailer:


    Bakfiets would be one option, but it's out of my price range.

    I've noticed several relatively cheap ($399) pedicabs on ebay:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=270234781718

    Anybody had any experience with these?
    They only have one gear and I have several big hills in to go - How hard do you think would be to modify it to at least 7 speed?
    Do you think it would be worth the effort?
    How stable are these while turning?

    My other thought is using a husky cargo trike:
    ( http://www.huskybicycles.com/Merchan...roduct_Count=5 ),
    but it's also a single gear solution and several people reported these as being tippy.

  2. #2
    Humvee of bikes =Worksman Nightshade's Avatar
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    Don't waste money on the chinese made trikes. Please....
    If it's a quality trike you want then buy from an American
    company...... www.worksman.com ....they will build and
    deliver to your door the trike of your choice.

    Also consider a longer trailer that is DIY most afforadably. Here is one I built in the 80's.
    The plans could easily be modified to allow the kids to sit face to face by making it a foot
    or two longer and still be managable to tow.

    " I built this trailer many years ago using easily salvaged material that were found or I had
    on hand. I use it still today when my Worksman PAV trike can't handle the load. If you elect
    to follow my mods to the original plan it will have load capaicity of 300 lbs easy.

    http://www.motherearthnews.com/Do-It...e-Trailer.aspx

    My mods.....
    Frame... from plywood to white oak salvaged from a shipping skid.
    Wheels...from 27" to 20" salvaged from a discarded kids bike (carrys more).
    Neck.. from plywood to white oak salvaged from a shipping skid.
    Bracing for neck (for added twist strength) diagonal from front edge of frame to 6"
    behind hitch of 3/4" electrical conduit. Neck dimensions can be adjusted to fit properly.
    Paint...what I had on hand in oil based enamel.
    Hitch.. a piece of tire side wall or other cord reinforced rubber sheeting.
    Safety... seat belt for kids and bike flag for idiot drivers.

    This plan is so easy to build I built mine using simple hand tools for everything except
    drilling the 4 holes in the metal conduit
    ."
    Last edited by Nightshade; 05-07-08 at 12:15 PM.
    My preferred bicycle brand is.......WORKSMAN CYCLES
    I dislike clipless pedals on any city bike since I feel they are unsafe.

    Originally Posted by krazygluon
    Steel: nearly a thousand years of metallurgical development
    Aluminum: barely a hundred, which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?

  3. #3
    Seņor Mambo
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    This is the pedicab you want. You still need to consider parking it though.

  4. #4
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    There are cheap pedicabs and good pedicabs and not much in between.

    Cheap are the ones on Ebay. New on Ebay at $399, for single-passenger-seat. There are, or have been, slightly better ones at $599 or so, with canopy over both driver and riders. There is a used one on Ebay right now, read that ad for some informative stuff, maybe even write the guy for more info. That is the only place I've ever seen those cheap ones discussed. I would beware of hills, maybe gear it lower rather than using 7-speed. Watch the brakes, too, that may be a single coaster brake to stop 500 lbs. And it's one giant sail when it's windy.

    You'll see occasional old pedicabs, but there's no telling what kind of quality you're getting into there. Typically single speed and heavy, maybe odd tire sizes.

    On the Husky trikes, there was a guy in Los Vegas that was planning to sell some more of those. Last one on Ebay went for $400 new, and he said he could UPS those, although he may have learned different. Figure maybe a couple of hundred dollars or more to do so. But starting bid was $250, so there may be some hope of getting a cheap one eventually.

    Go to Google, do an Image Search for "triciclo" and you'll pull up a number of those showing how they've been used.

    Note that Husky doesn't recommend them for people at all. That may just be a liability issue, because they sure get used for that in Mexico.

    I've got a used Worksman coming this afternoon. They don't currently make a front-passenger pedicab, though I've seen some used ones for sale in Arizona. I've got the one with the platform over the wheels. I have no idea how hard it would be to adapt that for people. It's single speed also. Making a 3 speed would be a matter of getting a coaster-brake 3-speed hub.

    Watch the lane width with any of these. You would pretty much take up a lane of traffic, can't really go beside traffic like on a bicycle. If you have a good place to ride, no problem, otherwise, a considerable hazard, I would think.

    The "cheap" one currently sold on Ebay, a used one with description is here:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/PEDICAB-TRICYCLE...QQcmdZViewItem
    A more deluxe model:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/LUXURY-THREE-WHE...QQcmdZViewItem
    A typical Old One:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/vintage-1950s-ri...QQcmdZViewItem
    This one seems to be non-functional at the moment, but still, you don't know how usable any of these would be until you get it.
    The "Husky" trike on Ebay (notice it's a Mercurio, one of the companies involved in Husky):
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=200214803972
    Last edited by StephenH; 05-07-08 at 11:55 AM.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  5. #5
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    Initial thoughts on the Worksman front-loader (just got it home):
    -They're heavy. Of course, I think a lot of the pedicabs are too.
    -Very weird to ride. I'll have to play with it some more. But feels fairly tippy & unstable, although not perhaps in the way you'd expect.
    -Mine is the kind with the platform above the wheels. It looks like it would be very simple to mount any number of home-made containers on there instead of the platform. The platform has a plywood bottom and everything just bolts to it.
    -Load capacity may be fairly high, but all the weight is balanced over the axle, supported only by the springs, so you wouldn't want to be loading stuff high or off center or going fast. For this reason, I don't think it would be a good choice for a pedicab platform for adults, might work okay for kids.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  6. #6
    Senior Member sailor2's Avatar
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    Stephen - thank you for the tip on spanish google searches.
    I've been able to found quite a lot of cargo tricycles in Latin American countries.
    Prices seem good too - I hope shipping won't be a killer.
    Now I'm contemplating Triciclo 20:
    http://endomex.com.mx/product_info.p...roducts_id=289
    They also have cool looking one with 16 inch wheels, but the cargo platform seems small.
    Looks like 20 would be big enough for two/three kids and for this price (1050 mexican pesos = ca. 100 USD ) I can afford to experiment. Plus playing with bikes is fun
    Now I need to find a place shipping it cheap to Estados Unidos.

  7. #7
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    I have no idea about actually buying anything there, or quality of the stuff, etc. I saw a cool kid's tricycle, and thought it might be Mexican, so was looking to see, and saw quite a few of the modified Mercurio/Husky style trikes in the process. Didn't see the kid tricycle, though.

    A while back, I saw a "Trike Wanted" ad in Craigslist down in the Brownsville area, and sent an email to that guy. He said he could get those trikes for aobout $275 over in Mexico. But still, Brownsville is a long way from Dallas, so that didn't help me much.
    Last edited by StephenH; 05-08-08 at 11:52 AM.
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  8. #8
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    You might modify this for passenger use: http://www.catoregon.org/hpm/trihauler.htm

    Perhaps one of these: http://www.rhoadescar.com/

    Or perhaps these people have something: http://www.lightfootcycles.com/products.htm

  9. #9
    yes
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    How about getting an extracycle for your current bike? If you can hook the trailer to the X, you could put a kid or two on the X seat, and then put the additional ones in the trailer. This is probably the cheapest solution that gives you quality stuff, and you get to keep your current bike.

  10. #10
    Senior Member squirtdad's Avatar
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    Hello

    a quick google (pedicab new york) lead me to this http://www.pedicab.com/

    These are expensive, but look well made...and designed to your need.

  11. #11
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    rhoades car is junk. don't bother.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by crackerdog View Post
    rhoades car is junk. don't bother.
    I've never experienced one myself, but you aren't the first person to say as much.

    What about: http://www.cyclesmaximus.com/

  13. #13
    Senior Member squirtdad's Avatar
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    Here is another link.....maybe you can talk to them a find out about used..... http://www.mrrickshaw.com/service.htm

  14. #14
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    These people used to make pedicabs regularly, and will still as a special project. They might also be able to help you find one of their old ones used.

    www.bikesatwork.com
    Last edited by Elkhound; 05-09-08 at 12:49 PM. Reason: Left out link.

  15. #15
    Uber Goober StephenH's Avatar
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    Saw this on Ebay just now- I would be cautious with the hills with it!
    http://cgi.ebay.com/Pedicab-Rickshaw...QQcmdZViewItem
    "be careful this rando stuff is addictive and dan's the 'pusher'."

  16. #16
    Bicyclerider4life
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    Quote Originally Posted by spambait11 View Post
    This is the pedicab you want. You still need to consider parking it though.
    ORGANIC ENGINES SUV in Pedi cab form! An EXCELLENT choice, if you have around $1,800.00 plus shipping to spend.

    Dave also has a frame kit for this, at $1,100.00 plus shipping.

    This is, of course, my dream trike, and naturally, WAY out of my price range.

  17. #17
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    What did you decide?

    I found your post fascinating. I've never attempted to haul kids on a bike or pulled a trailer. I would love to hear what you have decided to do and how it is working out.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by sailor2 View Post
    Soon (this fall) I'll need to haul 3 kids for a 5.5 miles, drop two kids, next 1 kid for 1.5 mile and myself for 3 more miles commute (and sometimes back in reverse too)
    Current mode of operation is a Schwinn/InStep two kids trailer and a rear seat (Bobike Maxi).
    But kids are getting bigger and I'm guessing next year the neighbor girl will be too big for the trailer:
    ....
    I would suggest that you build (or have built) a bigger trailer and just hook that onto whatever bike you want to use.

    None of the pedicabs I have seen coming out of China, India or the orient had what Western bicyclists would consider to be "full-range gearing", they were only really meant for short-distance use on flat ground. They are certainly usable, but if they are enjoyable is a much different question.

    I think it would be worth considering using a delta trike to pull the big trailer, since that way the trailer weight won't affect your steering as much--but the cheapest trikes with full-range gearing I know of are the Sun recumbent deltas, and the rear axles on these have had problems in the past (even without pulling a trailer). You might have to pay for some better-quality bearings than what Sun ships them with.
    ~

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug5150 View Post
    I would suggest that you build (or have built) a bigger trailer and just hook that onto whatever bike you want to use.

    ~
    The largest size of these will accomodate a passenger up to 5'10"/180 lbs., which is a medium-sized adult.

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