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Old 12-26-2009, 01:45 AM   #84 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by born2pdl View Post
Lots of git-er-done types can put together projects based on what they have because they build stuff all the time and have lots of tools and shop space, but for the average person to start a significant project using an aged 125cc 4speed? It's never good to call anyone's baby ugly, so I think that could work fine. Or use all the time you would spend on this project working a part time job and you'd have the cash to just buy one of those finished 150cc chinese reverse trikes they sell in Texas for $2700.

I too would love to make a reverse trike (RT) for FE purposes. Some things I've pondered for my project:
-Having budget, time, space and tools are all necessary to complete a RT project.
-Experienced modifiers have found that a slightly bigger engine running at lower load can still get great FE while increasing flexibility for gearing, top cruising speed and start-up torque needs.
-80's & 90's donor motocycles have 6speed trannys, good technology/reliability and styling, and fixer-uppers can be found cheap during the winter. Maybe an old 250 ninja, 250 virago, 250 honda/yamaha scooter?
-Final weight will likely be a surprise when all is said and done (usually goes up).
-A ton of time and resource will go into a decent RT, and the cost of the donor will be a small part of it. The result will be a rolling advertisement of the ecomodder movement. Everyone will want to closely look over a unique ride like that. I would want to show off a nice looking drivetrain in a clean project.
-Building a running RT with proper brakes, controls, instruments, steering, suspension, seats/belts without it looking like a hack-job would really be a huge project for most. Enclosed body with HVAC would turn that into almost impossible for me. What will I really have time and stamina for?

My ideal RT would be a side-by-side that could cruise at 75mph on interstates. I wish some creative type would market affordable reverse trike frame/chassis kits for a single seat streamliner, tandem streamliner and 2 side-by-side. Difficult to succeed as a business though since we ecomodders tend to not like to spend a lot of money.
Do you really think it would take in excess of 300 hours of labor to build this project?

I mean, I haven't even started on it yet, and it's already 1/4 way done. If I spend about 20 mins mounting the rear tire and chain back to the motor, and reinstall the carb (used it for testing something), I'm like 1/3 done, and only less than an hour invested. You think it'll take 300 hours to weld a tube chassis together and mount a couple seats and some panels to it?

That's what it would take *best case scenario* to earn $2700, and that's before taxes. Consider that nearly 30% of a paycheck is taxes, and set your best case wage at $9 per hour, and you're only taking home $6 per hour, which now means that you've got over 400 hours invested. Keep in mind again that you have to spend time to get to work, and time to get home, which in my case is another hour per day, averaging 100 days, and now you're talking about another 100 hours, which brings the total to 500 hours.

500 hours using the part time job analogy... I think not. The thing that will take the longest is actually finding another donor chassis... I can't use the 125's chassis unless I start with some other road-going vehicle that has a VIN. I have to have a title to start with, and the 125 does not, so I won't be using it. I may end up using the 125/5 speed on my TwinStar, though.
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