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Auto to manual transmission

Old 06-08-20, 08:40 PM
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AlmostTrick
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Auto to manual transmission

When this AutoBike was pulled from the trash many years ago, it was a like new, low mileage cream puff. I used it for a while as a novelty, and then sold it to a friend at work for cheap. He used it plenty for several years, and the unique automatic shifting system worked as well as this system can be expected to work... until last week when he was coasting down a hill and one of the wheel weight actuator units broke and ripped the pulley cage off the derailleur! Fortunately the wheel did not lock up and there was no crash. Also no spokes were damaged. Yay!

So after walking home he brought the bike back to Mark's Garage for repair. No way to fix or find replacements for the broken parts, so I dug through my parts bins and set it up as a manual. I told him he'll like the bike even more now!

Pulley cage and chain tied out of the way with rags.


"New" manual transmission for the AutoBike!

Pile of left over auto shift parts. I was surprised at the weight of it all, especially the centrifugal weights that have to pull the pie plate out to "push" the derailleur though the gears. It's unique, and does (did ) work, but there's lots of drag with this system.

New Sun Race ratchet shifter. I really like ratchet shifters.

Last edited by AlmostTrick; 06-08-20 at 08:44 PM.
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Old 06-09-20, 09:47 AM
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woodcraft
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Never heard of that one. Good job.

Needs a new decal- Manu-Bike?
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Old 06-09-20, 09:52 AM
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Russ Roth
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Worked at a shop that sold those, had to convert the last of them to even manage to sell them for half price. Cool idea but total garbage execution, especially when you had to stop quickly and restarted resulting in grinding through your gears. Now why none of the main brands haven't integrated power meters into their electronic shifting so it can do so for you, that would be the best start. Still tough though.
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Old 06-09-20, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth View Post
...especially when you had to stop quickly and restarted resulting in grinding through your gears.
I never encountered that issue. The most annoying feature of this system was that it would clatter when the bike speed kept it in between gears. But this could be avoided rather easily by either slightly slowing or speeding up... and it didn't take much. A more concerning issue happened if you tried to power sprint the bike. The unexpected up shifts that occurred under full power would violently throw your feet off the pedals. (which were smooth and slippery) I installed BMX style pedals with pins to help combat this. But seriously, this bike was only intended for easy cruising in the park, so this, and the issue you quoted probably weren't all that common for the original buyers.
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