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Saturday, September 21, 2013

ozHpv Challenge 2013: prolog

Repairs on the bike: Glue, fibreglass, file, add steel and plywood plates to spread the load on the bike frame.  Reassemble.

Back of the bike drying after varnishing. Short (89mm unicycle) cranks are shown, they can improve handling on this sort of trike.  

Frame drying

Long cranks on the back of the bike. Note that the chainring is on the left hand side as this configuration makes the wheel rotation the same as the pedal rotation in a standard bike.

Short Cranks

A selection of cranks without chainrings.  The long ones come from Greenspeed / Haberstock Mobility , are expensive and intended for Schlumpf drives.  The shorter ones have just the same configuration, can be inexpensive, are intended for unicycles and come from the unicycle . com online shop.  There is a wide variety including types with a disc brake mount which could add features such as parking stability to the type of HPV I have been experimenting with.

With a few weeks to go until the 2013 ozhpv challenge, my newest creation, the Vicycle had an unfortunate frame breakage in Sydney Road.  I had slammed on the brakes and the timber frame said "Uh Uh, I ain't gunna take this crap no more", and promptly split in 2.  It was then necessary to pick both the pieces of my trike and my dignity off the Sydney Road bitumen, gather them up and walk home.  This was all on the day after the federal election, and I had been looking forward to whizzing past all the Capital City Trail cyclists on my way back.  But instead, they were all passing me as I wheeled the trike, all the bits jumbled into the back of it.  Yes, I was passing the occasional Latte sipping, with kids or dogs or both frollicking group of amblers but that was about it.

When I got back I needed to think what to do to restore the bike.  A whole new frame was just a bit of timber with a few holes in it, but I didn't have a seat to match ready.  So restoring it seemed like the go.  This involved glueing the frame together at the front, then wrapping it in fibreglass on a cold weeknight, waiting for it to dry and then drilling and filing into the fibreglass to put the bottom bracket and head tube back in place.  There was lots of plywood and a few steel plates in there as well.  To cut a long story short I fixed the bike but not perfectly as later posts will reveal.  As well I bought and fitted unicycle cranks to various parts of the bike, the photos are up above.

Steve Nurse

The sad news of the passing of our very dear friend Jen Brady reached us a few weeks ago.  Our sympathy and best wishes go out to her family and friends, especially Rob, Finn and Jackson.  Rest in Peace, we will miss you (Christine, Steve and Ewan Nurse)


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