Adult trike with child's seat

Want to share some knowledge of eco products. Or have you heard about any new eco projects that you want to share with the world?
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PurpleDragon
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Post: #38092 PurpleDragon
Mon Oct 23, 2006 2:58 pm

This is a fascinating thread, and I shall watch the outcome with interest.
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Post: #40168 jondy
Wed Nov 08, 2006 11:38 am

Electric bikes & trikes. As I remember the UK legal motor power is 200w for a bike and 250w for a trike. You can change the front wheel over to a wheel with a hub motor built in, on a trike or bike. I brought an imported 450w hub motor (see goldenmotor, china) for a bike and mounted the battery pack on a carrier on the back, disguised it in a large black bag. 450w gave enough power to be useful, I would think that 200 or 250w would be of minimal use. Thus legal electric bikes can be ridden by kids(?) You could buy direct from goldenmotor using paypal (no pay, yuck, see paypal sucks.com) but you might get a question about import tax. I brought mine from a club member (bvs) who said it was useful but when a fit person rode a good bike the advantage of the electric motor was minimal. The bigger the motor the more battery power you will need for a useful range. Some people have mounted motor and battery on a trailer behind a bike to push it, lots of ideas out there. Chinese electric bikes are cheap to buy but low powered and often pedal assist, you have to pedal to get assistance from the motor. Hub motors available up to 750w (= 1hp) If you buy a hub motor you will also need a controller and of course battery pack.

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Post: #42940 Stonehead
Tue Dec 05, 2006 10:41 am

We're selling the Discovery and using it to pay for a Kangaroo trike. I managed to get one with a big discount via ebay. Pedal power!
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madanna
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Post: #47485 madanna
Sun Jan 28, 2007 10:00 am

Hi Stonehead

Have u had a chance to road test the trike much yet? I have been looking at them with great interest.

What age could u sensibly carry the kids up to? I have an 8 and a 3...I have also been looking at adult carrying pedicabs as an alternative (rickshaw type ones) and wonder give than I have an 8 yo whether the lifespan of the kangaroo would be limited...any musings from experience?

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have you seen the worktrike?

Post: #49290 timhippy
Tue Feb 20, 2007 10:42 pm

i am not sure if these are available on the open market but i built my own a year ago and by god that was the most interesting cycle to ride i have ever ridden and i have ridden just about everything ,,if your not sure what im on about its a recumbent with front wheel drive and rear wheel drive lol it was sooooo much fun and could carry a massive load for a bike,
im not sure whether this is relevent to this post but im new so please forgive me lol from THE HAPPY HIPPY

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Stonehead
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Post: #58700 Stonehead
Sat May 26, 2007 11:33 am

Well, four months on and I can report that the Kangaroo is definitely a curate's egg!

First, the bad bits.

The Kangaroo is definitely a trike designed for low speeds in areas with few or no hills. (It is from Denmark!)

My ride into town is downhill all the way and I almost never need to pedal (headwinds aside) as the Kangaroo coasts extremely well - in fact, a little too well. Once you hit speeds above 15mph, the Kangaroo starts to oscillate while above 20mph it develops an alarming wobble.

The brakes are good (discs front, hub brake rear) but both tend to get very hot on the downhill run as I hold the speed in check. I find the best method is to use the hub brake until I can smell it then transfer the braking gradually to the front discs. Then use the discs until they smell before transferring back to the hub brake.

The uphill ride back home is a killer. I'm quite fit as I work a croft almost entirely by hand (no tractor), walk several miles a day, and can ride a mountain bike with child into town and back without breaking a sweat. The Kangaroo with no load on board is like riding the mountain bike with a child aboard.

But add a 40kg child and groceries to my 80kg plus the weight of the Kangaroo, and the effort required to peddle 3.2 kilometres uphill is considerable. (The ride is a rise of 80m, but it's not constant with two short sections of 1-in-12 and 1-in-16 at either end of a more gentle gradient.

With only seven gears, the Kangaroo is at a disadvantage already but there's an even bigger problem. You can't stand on the pedals and use your weight as well as muscle power! If you do stand on the pedals, the Kangaroo rocks alarmingly, the steering wanders madly from left to right, and the handlebars creak and groan. So, it's sitting and muscle power alone.

But even that wouldn't be too bad if it weren't for the seat. It's a fairly conventional gel-filled seat which would be fine if you weren't sitting on it with all your weight while your legs do the work. But as a seat that takes all your weight all the time, it's bloody terrible leaving me with numb nether regions, painful lower back and, if I'm not careful, incipient piles!! (I'm trying to find a better seat at the moment.)

The Kangaroo can take up to a 100kg load, but I have not yet attempted to ride it with two children on board or 100kg of animal feed as I know I won't get up the hill on the ride home - much less the hill out the back that descends down to the feed merchant. That will require either an exceptional level of fitness or an electric motor as it rises 60m in 500m - 1 in 8.33.

The final glitch is with the hub gears - they work fine for several weeks and then, usually mid-way up a hill, I suddenly find myself with only top and bottom gears. Stopping and disconnecting them, then adjusting everything and re-connecting them usually works but it's a pain.

But, don't me wrong, I still think the Kangaroo is a great trike - the problems, seat aside, are largely caused by the fact that we're using it in hilly country at the top end of its load carrying ability.

The boys love the forward seating and weather protection, it's easily seen by traffic (unlike the mountain bike, we find most vehicles give us a very wide berth). The steering, up to 15mph, is very good and, as I said earlier, the brakes are well up to stopping the heavily laden trike from 15-20mph.

The combination of a "hand brake" (velcro over the disc brake lever) and a frame-mounted lock hold the trike still even on steep slopes, while the push-down stabiliser on the front works well to stop the Kangaroo tipping forward when children hop in and out.

The build quality of the Kangaroo is superb, the paint is very tough and all the weather-proofing washes clean easily.

My advice?

If you're reasonably fit and change the seat, then the Kangaroo would be brilliant for daily use carrying children and loads in flat areas.

If you're crazy enough to use it on the hills, then you're going to need to keep the load down, become exceptionally fit, or fit an electric motor.



PS Apologies for doing this as a cut and paste from posts elsewhere but I don't have the time to write four different versions of the same info.
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Post: #58701 baldowrie
Sat May 26, 2007 12:25 pm

might be worth sourcing a small electric motor for the hills then :mrgreen:

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Post: #58710 Stonehead
Sat May 26, 2007 1:05 pm

baldowrie wrote:might be worth sourcing a small electric motor for the hills then :mrgreen:


I wish! A decent electric hub motor with at least five gears (eg an SRAM Sparc) will set me back around £500. Then I'd need the cabling, the remote control, the shifter, the battery, etc. And I'd then have to build a wheel up around it (or pay a shed-load of dosh to get someone to do it for me).

On top of that, I'd need a small wind turbine or PV panels, a regulator, battery and 12v charger so I could charge the bike battery as I don't want to use mains electricity.

I'd be looking at around £1200 for all that, and an electric motor for the Kangaroo is way down the list of priorities to get our limited dosh. Top of the list at the moment is more fencing as we have sheep coming on to the place later in the year - and we need to spend £400-500 on posts, wire and fittings as much of the old fencing is collapsing fast.

No, I think an electric motor is out and super fitness is in! Sigh.
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Post: #58720 baldowrie
Sat May 26, 2007 2:00 pm

£1200! Gulp!!!!! :shock:

Sheep...will you be doing lamb later??????

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Post: #58736 Stonehead
Sat May 26, 2007 3:07 pm

baldowrie wrote:£1200! Gulp!!!!! :shock:


Add that to the cost of the Kangaroo and you're looking at the cost of a fairly decent car.

Still, the running costs are much less although we do have the bicycle equivalent of comprehensive insurance and there are still maintenance costs.

You're also not using fossil fuels - the Kangaroo is fuelled by rolled oats and pork sausages. I'm just the engine...

Sheep...will you be doing lamb later??????


Possibly. I have two porkers going to the abattoir on Tuesday week and then again in about 10 weeks.
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Post: #58757 baldowrie
Sat May 26, 2007 4:32 pm

Stonehead

I have two porkers going to the abattoir on Tuesday week and then again in about 10 weeks.


Still got a lot left at present, but will have to start eating more for the next lot :wink:

You're also not using fossil fuels - the Kangaroo is fuelled by rolled oats and pork sausages. I'm just the engine...


the other half might dispute that one :lol:

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Post: #67060 QuakerBear
Tue Jul 31, 2007 1:32 pm

I've seen one in Oxford so maybe check out the bike shops there. I once saw a man with three kids on his bike: one on a mini tandem attachment at the back, one on a plastic seat on the parcel bit behind the 'driver' and one sat on a small saddle that had been screwed onto the cross bar so the child sat betwen the mans arms. I've also seen bikes with handle bars that scoop very low in the front so that a plastic childseat can be put between the handles. Oh, and I've seen a tandem with a mini child tandem attached to the back. Also in Oxford there's a brigade of retired old men who cycle round delivering post betwen differnt colleges. They have like a trailer on the back of their bikes that would work very well for weekly shopping or two children.

Arh, Oxford parents have clearly got it sorted.
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Post: #67076 ina
Tue Jul 31, 2007 2:37 pm

QuakerBear wrote:Arh, Oxford parents have clearly got it sorted.


Am I right in remembering that Oxford is pretty flat?

I did almost everything with my bike plus trailer when I lived in Germany... That was a reasonably hilly area, too - but mostly not quite as steep as around here.
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Post: #67084 QuakerBear
Tue Jul 31, 2007 2:58 pm

The very centre of Oxford is fairly flat, but as soon as head towards the river or out into the surrounding suburbs there are more hills. Hills just take getting used to, you'll never climb that massive one first time you attempt it and there's nothing wrong with hopping off to push for a while. Eventually your legs will get stronger and you'll do it, then before you know if you'll be able to do it with ease.
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Post: #67101 baldowrie
Tue Jul 31, 2007 5:53 pm

Quakerbear, you have not seen the hill Ina lives on!

That's real hill, and not a hillock!


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