Cyclekart progress, Nov 1, 2009
(Edit, 2012-07-10: In case it’s not obvious (it is obvious), this was never intended to be an example of “good welding”. It’s obviously terrible welding. This is pretty much the first thing I ever attempted to weld, and it’s obviously terrible. Hence why I described it as the “world’s shittiest welding job” and referred sarcastically to my “super excellent welding skills”. This was *obviously* never intended to be any kind of “here’s how you weld…” instructional blog entry, more like “here’s what happened when I, a complete beginner, attempted to weld some stuff while making my cyclekart.” Notably, the shackles (“world’s shittiest welding job”) needed to be redone. The plates on the side of the frame rails really don’t do anything — if they fail, nothing happens. It’s precisely because they aren’t critical that I chose them as something to try as a beginner. What follows is the original post, circa Nov 1, 2009)
The weather has finally cooled off enough that I was able to work outside comfortably, and so I’m back on the cyclekart project. This weekend, I built half the front suspension.
First I had to fabricate a spring shackle:
Above, the raw steel parts used for the spring shackle. I welded the three parts together, then drilled holes on each end to accept the bolts (grade 5 steel) that connect the frame frail to the leaf spring.
Above, you see the spring shackle assembled. Note the world’s shittiest welding job. Yeah, I did that.
Next, I had to cut a hole in the bottom of the frame rail to accept the spring shackle:
It’s ugly, but that’s ok, because I welded some metal slabs over the side to (I hope) make it stronger where the cut has weakened the frame rail, and also to make the wear on the bolt that connects the frame rail to the spring shackle less severe.
Above, you see all the suspension parts disassembled.
And here they are assembled. Putting it together is a bit harder than it looks because all the holes don’t exactly line up perfectly, and the spring has to be stretched a wee bit to get it to all fit together.
Above, you can see how the shackle connects to the frame rail through the hole, and to the spring. And, you can see some more evidence of my super-excellent welding skills. 😉
And, one final shot of the assembled frame rail. I was surprised how bouncy it was. As stiff as that spring was, I wasn’t sure the spring was even going to move at all, but it seems to work pretty well.