Road train

Recumbents and all feet forward machines

Road train

Postby JulianEdgar » Sun Feb 21, 2010 7:23 pm

Went for an overnight trip with self-built suspension trike, tag-along, Burley Nomad trailer. Five year old on tag-along, and wife on another bike.


Rough road route with a lot of dirt and some very steep hillclimbing (a lot steeper than shown here!).


Camped overnight.


(Sorry for bad phone pics)

Good fun - but it kinda made a weekend seem like a week!
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Joined: Sat Mar 21, 2009 7:35 am

by BNA » Sun Feb 21, 2010 7:52 pm


Re: Road train

Postby njg02 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 7:52 pm

Great setup. I bet the hills were easy with your little kicker motor on the back! Great way to get him involved.
How was your suspension?
Thanks for sharing.

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Re: Road train

Postby John Lewis » Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:28 pm

Thanks for posting that Julian. Really made my day looking at the "roadtrain". Nice setup

John Lewis
John Lewis
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Joined: Tue Oct 02, 2007 7:12 pm
Location: Albany. 400km South of Perth

Re: Road train

Postby JulianEdgar » Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:44 am

How was your suspension?

The rear suspension – with a vertical load of more than 60kg working through it – was magnificent. I inflated the rear pressure bottle to a static 60 psi and shut down the damper valve a little. This gave a ride that was quite amazingly good – I wouldn’t even feel the bump when the trike’s rear wheel met it; I only knew there'd been a bump when I felt the tug as the tag-along wheel passed it.

The front air reservoirs needed about 22 psi in them – slightly more in the right-hand one to counter an asymmetry in the pannier loads (water was in the right-hand pannier RT60 – 10kg). I varied the position of the damping valves for different road surfaces. On bumpy sections I opened the valves right up. However, on smooth sections taken faster this damper setting allowed the trike to lean – with the extra weight up high and the lowish roll centre, the trike could then feel tippy-toed – best characterised by flopping from one side to the other. So on smooth surfaces I positioned the damper adjustment so fluid flow was only just occurring, which stiffened roll damping.

Alexander stood on the pedals, knees flexed, for any large bumps I warned him about, and the tag-along’s large 20 inch tyre was set very low in pressure. The Nomad trailer’s tyres were also set low in pressure, but on bigger bumps it hopped around a bit. The trailer carried only sleeping gear so it was fairly light.

On this route I’d score the suspension at probably 8/10. Next time, with a similar high-mounted load, I’ll reduce the volume of the front spring pressure bottles from 600ml to 300ml (the same as I run on the back); this will give a faster rising front spring rate and so better control body roll.
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Re: Road train

Postby }SkOrPn--7 » Mon Feb 22, 2010 8:31 pm

Thanks for sharing those are great images only wish I could be there camping with you makes me a little sick but joyous at the same time just glad you enjoyed yourself. Wish I wasn't bogged down with work so much but that's life I guess. :D
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