Cyclekart progress, Dec 13, 2009 — front axle on, steering works!

I found some u-bolts of the proper size (1 and 5/8 inch diameter was what I needed, because that’s the outer diameter of the steel pipe I used for my axle) at O’Reilly autoparts. They’re meant for holding exhaust pipes on, but they seem to be pretty heavy duty steel, so I’m not worried about them failing or anything. I didn’t use the little bracket that came with them, but fabricated my own instead from some steel plate.
Above you see the axle attached to the springs.
Here’s a closeup of the u-bolts on one side. I had thought about welding little tabs onto the axle to keep it from rotating, but it seems pretty stable as is — can’t budge it. I might still weld little tabs onto it though.
Here’s a shot of the underside showing the steel bracket I fabricated.

I had to lengthen the Azusa steering column. I cut it in half, and inserted a length of pipe which had a perfect inner diameter, and welded it all together. Later, I welded the little tabs that connect to the steering tie rods.

The tie rods I got were too long (my other choice was too short) so I had to cut them to the proper length, then put threads onto the cut end with a die, which I’d never done before. A little hard to get the process started, but once you get it going, it’s pretty easy.

So I got the steering hooked up.

Closeup showing how the tie-rods attach to the steering column.

And finally, a little video:

~ by scaryreasoner on December 13, 2009.

4 Responses to “Cyclekart progress, Dec 13, 2009 — front axle on, steering works!”

  1. Your CycleKart is looking great. It actually looks pretty familiar!
    I’m looking forward to seeing it come together.

    Mike Stevenson

    • Hi Mike, thanks for commenting. Nice to have encouraging words from one of the originators of these little beasts. You guys are geniuses, one for coming up the the idea, but mainly for actually doing it

      I’ve been having a great time building this thing and have learned to do an amazing number of things I couldn’t previously do. It’s been a fantastic experience so far, and I highly recommend it to anybody out there reading this. I still have a ways to go before completing the project obviously, but I’m already almost dreading the completion, just because it will mean the building process is finished! I suspect I will like the building of the project more than driving the thing, though, never having driven one, that remains to be seen.

  2. I have a suggestion for your next project, which will assuage your completion anxiety. Why not build a small electric car? I notice the hubs on the front wheels are about the size of the hubs used on new electric bikes. They are quite powerful for their weight, and probably amount to less than a gas motor even with the Lithium batteries. I know you’re going to think cost, and you’re right. On the other hand you’ll run into a lot of other new stuff to learn how to do and I know you’d get a kick out of that. Think what you could do with a segway which you could get cheap (relatively) if it were damaged or just for sale at a good price. Your proje3ct is looking really cool, and I think you’re right that it is more fun to build than to run around in. Happy New Year!

  3. Well, I still have a long long way to go with this project. My “completion anxiety” may be gone by then, we’ll see.

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