News and Events

Keep up to date with the latest news and events of Modular Bikes.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

Winter Surf Prelude 2

Tailbox split can be seen above the white water bottle holder

Inside the box. Outside panels held on by fold back clips.

Break detail with outside panel below - the panel boss won't get in the way of the repair which was -

Started by clamping some splints behind the broken part and drilling through.

Then the splints were screwed and glued in place. Screws were driven in from inside the tailbox, that meant........

The final deburring of the screw tips could be done easily, and there'd be no pointy screws sticking inside.

Leaning trike is back together again.

2nd repair / imporovement, I lengthened the tailbox hinges so they could be extended if required.  Occasionally I carry bike wheels, and the hinged lid can now have 5 different positions and be up to 100mm from the base. Some new slots mean the excess leather can be tucked away neatly, .... 

as shown here.


After the wet ride to Kennet River (see my last post), I decided to pull down the tailbox and clean it, and I was glad I did. There was silt and water in lots of spots, so I took it apart, hosed it down and cleaned all the bits. As well, there was a break in one of the sidepanel supports, and I set about fixing that as shown above.  

At first I was a bit concerned that I was only fixing one side, and that other similar places would break too. Then I thought of a new tactic, and that is just to screw the  sidepanels onto their supports instead of clipping them on. Then the sidepanels could do their bit and be structural, and stay removable as well. I haven't done this change yet but plan to soon.

A second change to the tailbox was to make extendable hinges for the lid at the front. This should let me carry more things like bike wheels.

Overall I'm very happy with this sort of work on this tailbox. It is the heavy / load carrying / dignified and well presented tailbox, one of two styles that I make.  The second 'box is shown in this post and is a full 2kg lighter, and I believe more aerodynamic than the one I've shown today. (See ) for plans of the trike described in this post)

Should have the bike back on the road in a day or 2, meanwhile I have been doing 20 - 30 k a day on the slower trike to keep fit enough for the 200k ride next week.

Back is still a bit sore when I lean back while riding but in general, I'm healing well from the slip I had a few days ago.

Regards Steve Nurse

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

Winter Surf Prelude 2



Kennet River, a highlight.

The Rosellas at Kennet were very friendly and I was able to feed them by hand. A welcome stop for recovery.

On the way back, there's a rainbow here if you look hard.

Stopped for a break and drink here, near Cathedral rock. Nice light.


Today I did some prep for a 200k Audax bike ride I plan to do in just under 2 weeks, and I repeated the longest training ride I did before my last 200k ride (a few photos at the end of a post here). This time I took my recumbent leaning trike which I think is a bit slower and heavier than the quite similar bike I also ride.

It was raining today, but everything went fine up to Wye River where unfortunately I fell on some steps while walking to the toilets.  I walked down the steps blissfully unaware and not holding onto the railings. The steps were as slippery as soap, and I fell on my back and elbow.  

My back swelled up with a bruise which hurt a bit when I sat back in the seat. On my forearm, I reopened a wound I got falling off a bike a week or so ago. Also ouch!  Anyway, I kept going, found some shelter and respite at Kennet, then headed back. I got back to Airies Inlet ok, if a bit slowly.  

Hopefully no more accidents on the ride or any rides leading up to it. Enough drama for now!

Monday, July 25, 2022

Spinup Dyno Tests / Winter Surf prelude 1


Setup in computer room includes bike on trainer with front wheel drive and dyno, and


D light square light image

D Light, about $36.00, lights up at about 15kph

Flat Hi Power light image

Hi - Power Light, about $65, includes standlight, and daylight sensor,  and lights up at about 7kph

Busch and Muller rear light......

is about $65 and has reflector and standlight. It lights up at about 7kph.


As described in my last post, I have fitted a spinup R03W dyno to my recumbent bike, and hope to test it in an Audax ride in a few weeks time.  A few nights ago I set up my bike on a training stand in the computer room, and went through a few lights I'd bought to see how they went with the dyno. 

As well as the bike, stand and lights, I had a new Giant Axact 6 wired speedo connected up to the bike. I could turn the pedal by hand, see the lights light up by dyno energy, and find out what speed they lit up, as well as check any standlight (light remains on without any new energy from dyno) function. Lights all came from Bicycle Parts Warehouse. They are a good local supplier, but you may be able to find cheaper prices elsewhere. 

Results are above. I am happy to use the Hi-Power light, and eventually the Busch and Muller rear light as well. Will report later as I start to use the lights on the road.  Its important to note the bike I tested parts on uses a 500mm (20") diameter wheel whereas most bikes use a 700mm diameter wheel, so light up speeds will be higher for these bikes.


Steve Nurse

Thursday, July 21, 2022

Spinup R03W Dyno on Fred bikes



A version of this article first appeared in June 2022 Huff, the journal of OzHPV .

For a while I  have been looking out for a dynamo for the recumbent bikes and trikes that I make, and it seems that I’ve finally found one. The HPV’s are front wheel drive with a 20" front wheel, and also split in the frame just behind the headstem. This means the front wheel has a spline and cluster on it and is usually seen as a back wheel on bicycles. The back wheel setup has no drive cogs, so the wheels I use are more often seen as front wheels.                

So most hub dynamos (which operate on bicycle front wheels) cause a complication on my HPV’s, that is that the wires for the front light need to travel over or through the frame split. When I saw some dynamos from Spinup that work on the rear wheel I thought they would be worth a shot.

Spinup are the bike generator subsidiary of Sunup in Taiwan who make small general purpose generators and ebike motors. They make one “front” and two “rear” dynos. I chose the less powerful and less expensive rear dyno, the R03W, mainly because its more powerful brother, the R12W has a 700C-wheel-speed limit of 60kph. But on a 20” / 500mm wheel like I’ve got the speed limit which depends on the rpm reduces to 43kph, but I often go over that, mainly downhill!

 I dealt directly with Sunup to get my dyno and their responses have always been quick and courteous. Cost was about AUD $230 which I consider fair when compared to some other bike parts and accessories.                                

Installation was fairly intuitive and simple and at the moment I have the dyno charging a USB battery pack which can in turn charge cameras, lights and phones. It does its job without fuss and there’s no noticeable friction.

A cable was missing from the original kit, and when this arrives, I plan to connect it directly to a dyno headlight, trial it on a 200k Audax ride and report for Huff. The only drawback on the dyno seems to be its weight which is about 600g, 400g heavier than a bottle dynamo I have.

Update, July 21, 2022

The cable arrived about a week ago, and I am now about halfway through converting my "fast bike" to use the R03W dyno to power headlights. Work done sofar has been to do a front wheel swap between my bike and leaning trike. So the dyno is on my fast / light bike now, and I have connected it to a reflector / headlight from Abbotsford Cycles.  Still to come is replacing the dynohub rear wheel with a standard wheel, and I have a few different headlights and aim to compare them.

Also, I have signed up for the Audax 200k Winter Surf ride, so should be able to report how the lights go in practice soon.

New rear wheel (right) and old (left). The old wheel has corflute spoke covers for speed and a shutter precision hub dyno which has served me well for years. Here is the post when I installed it back in 2014.

Big mess in back yard during front wheel switcheroo