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Subaru ( and other engine) TRIKES


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20 replies to this topic

#1 dritchie

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Posted 14 April 2004 - 02:51 PM

I need a number of opinions and or ideas ..

I currently have one of the first " as far as we know"
Subaru Trikes in the US.
My questions are a few;

First- Can a four wheel drive auto transaxle be run with some sort of plate
over the front "axle holes" and just used with a drive shaft to a rear differantial?
Is the rear an IRS?

In my case, I have a two wheel drive transaxle with the engine in front of it
but another is being designed to be a little longer and would "require" a short driveshaft.

The other question - If you were NOT using a Subaru, what other
engine/autotransaxle would YOU use - some that would hold-up
ALMOST as well as the Subaru :grin:

Any help / ideas ??

Posted Image


Thanks

Don

#2 Subadoom

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Posted 14 April 2004 - 03:03 PM

It looks like fun. How well dose it work? I know that there is a motercycle comany that also makes one. Its called the digger. http://www.cyclestyle.com

-Robert

#3 dritchie

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Posted 14 April 2004 - 03:25 PM

Know all about Cyclestyle, looks like nice stuff, BUT - he is in New Zealand.
While he THINKS the frame belongs to him, our frame is older then his
and if you look at his pics ..... Hummm looks a little like mine :banana:

I thought about getting one from him, but when you factor in shipping
and the front end, we can have them built in Hartford CT (and possably in Cleveland) at about the same price.

Don

#4 All_talk

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Posted 14 April 2004 - 04:16 PM

If you wanted to go with the more traditional engine in the rear the VW vanagon had an auto, and I believe you can get an adapter plate to mount up a Subie motor (I know you can for the older manual units). If you’re looking for a mid engine with a short driveline and a rear diff, any smaller pickup drive train should work. And yes, you could use a Subaru 4WD tranny (locked in 4WD) with the front diff removed, I’m sure you could fab up some plugs for the output seals, or just leave the diff in and let them spin. The trouble with the Subie auto trans is gonna be that the rear drive is NOT a positive gear drive, it’s a clutch pack, and I believe it reduces clutch pressure based on engine vacuum. You might be able to get full time clutch pack pressure if you disconnect the vac source, but you will still be driving through the clutch, not gears.



Gary



P.S. if you want to build a 3-wheeled vehicle that really handles well you need to put the two wheels in the front.

#5 dritchie

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Posted 14 April 2004 - 04:48 PM

I guess I forgot to mention .... NO VW !!!

The very idea of taking an engine, and HANGING it behind the axle
just doesn't sit well with me, also the idea of using adapters
between the engine and transmission / transaxle is not something I want
to do ....

EVERYBODY does it that way, If I wanted to be like everyone else,
I'd be riding a VW powered trike "wheeley machine" !!

I currently Ride a Subaru !!

:dead:


Don

#6 bushbasher

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Posted 14 April 2004 - 05:50 PM

the transmissions dont need a plate over the front shaft stubs, there is no way for oil to leak in or out anymore than when there are axles on. However it might look dumb if its not covered up. The rear output on a part-time 4wd tranny is strong enough to run a whole subaru off of, it should be no problem for a trike. A pushbutton 4wd manual or auto will work, as well as dual range manuals. Go with a part-time 4wd transmission though, full-time 4wd transmissions will have a center diff or clutch pack that wont send 100% power to the rear. However there are some ft4wd manual transmissions with a center diff lock, which could be locked, but you might as well go with a part-time tranny because theres no advantage for you in ft4wd, unless you want to make a 5wheel bike with 4 wheel drive :cool:

#7 stacebg

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 04:09 PM

"snipYou might be able to get full time clutch pack pressure if you disconnect the vac source, but you will still be driving through the clutch, not gears.>snip

i have had a clutch pak apart and made a set of plates to "lock" up the clutch

stacy

#8 erik litchy

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 06:02 PM

i dont see the point of trikes really. id prabably be happy with a lame sv650 or something. but if I were to make one id use an old snowmobile engine, great power to weight ratio.

#9 NorthWet

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 11:20 PM

Another thought might be to use a transverse engine/fwd-transaxle.

At the risk of heresy, perhaps a Toyota or Nissan, 4 or V6...

... or how about a Honda? :grin:

#10 themixtoo

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Posted 07 December 2004 - 03:58 PM

Don, yes you can use the Subbie 4wd auto transaxle and you don't need any 'caps' over the front drive splined stubs sticking out unless your just concerned about cosmetic appearance. They are already sealed (no fluids will leak out). Your trike looks well engineered, have you been into this 'Ru' thing for long. I used to be the parts manager at J and B Motors down on Superior Ave. in the 1980's. I notice youv'e used an AE81 engine/trans combo on the trike, I still have a few 'oldy' parts stached. Maybe we can help each other out. Gary

#11 Russ Hill

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Posted 21 December 2004 - 12:10 AM

Don, yes you can use the Subbie 4wd auto transaxle and you don't need any 'caps' over the front drive splined stubs sticking out unless your just concerned about cosmetic appearance. They are already sealed (no fluids will leak out). Your trike looks well engineered, have you been into this 'Ru' thing for long. I used to be the parts manager at J and B Motors down on Superior Ave. in the 1980's. I notice youv'e used an AE81 engine/trans combo on the trike, I still have a few 'oldy' parts stached. Maybe we can help each other out. Gary

Kennedy Engineering sells adapter plate to bolt a Subaru to a VW trans-axle. Do a web search for subaru conversion. There's also a subaru conversion group on Yahoo Groups that can help you with parts.
http://www.kennedyeng.com/

#12 leeschaumberg

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Posted 09 January 2006 - 12:08 PM

What rear shocks are you using? Subaru engines work the best in trikes. I use a EA82 with an automatic from a 1986 wagon. The most popular engie is a VW but the weight on the rear is good for big wheelies. A liquid cooled engine is much better than an air cooled engine ( The VW ). There is many sites out there talking about VW trikes. You may see my site at www.trikerlee.com anytime you want.
Lee

#13 mtsmiths

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Posted 09 January 2006 - 02:12 PM

Lee, is that also your RV? Let's hear about that then. I'm currently rebuilding a Spezio TuHoler. Doing wiring now, and revamping the landing gear shortly (getting rid of bungees).

Smitty

#14 leeschaumberg

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 06:03 AM

Unfortunately that is not my RV8. I wish it was. I have built a couple of experimental aircraft to date but not a RV8. When you have an instrument rated com licence in your pocket you begin to think like me.
Lee

#15 mtsmiths

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Posted 10 January 2006 - 10:50 AM

When you have an instrument rated com licence in your pocket you begin to think like me.
Lee


??? What does this refer to?

After doing the ground school and passing the writtens for both with presentable scores, I made two decisions.

1. I don't want to be in WX in a little airplane, no matter how it's equipped, and what rating I have in my pocket.

2. Like my old ex USAF/airline Daddy said, "Boy, airplanes are like women, they're fun to play with, but as soon as money is involved it becomes work!"

It ain't the destination , for me it's the trip. I guess that's why I've owned a Luscombe, Champ, and now the Spezio.

#16 keltikrewser

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Posted 15 January 2006 - 01:15 AM

you wouldn't have to hang the engine behind the axles if youran a VW drivetrain. Lots of guys building sandrails run them mid engine, i beleive all you need to do is flip the ring gear, but im not possitive never done it.

another alternative would be a chevy Corvair drivetrain. all were air-cooled boxer 6 cyl. ranging in hp from 90hp(early '60-'63 i beleive), 110hp, 140hp(turbo pre-'65), and 180hp (turbo post '65). all were available with chevy powerglide automatic trans. i even see guys put these in motorcycles. again i beleive all you need to do is flip the diff in the transaxle to run it mid engine. they also had irs.

just my .02
ryan

ps. if you're looking for a corvair, ive got a '65 with a 110hp im looking to get rid of.

#17 keltikrewser

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Posted 15 January 2006 - 02:03 AM

heres a pic of a rail with a mid engine setup. kind of hard to see but engines obviously in front of the axles

http://www.dune-bugg...cgi?read=100097

heres another better look...
http://www.americans...=view_photo.php


this one has a mid engine subaru with a vw transaxle...
http://www.tech3moto...s/pic/pic12.jpg


just a couple of things to throw inthe mix
ryan

#18 leeschaumberg

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Posted 30 January 2006 - 07:30 AM

:) Thanks for the pictures of the sand rails. Some people don't realize that the air cooled stuff is antique. Because I shifted many 12 and 14 speed trannys my right arm is not what it used to be. Go to my web site to look if you want too. www.trikerlee.com
Lee

#19 DJtheGOD

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Posted 27 February 2006 - 07:09 PM

The way I am going about building a trike is using the FWD gearbox from a '84 leone and mating to the rear end of a 4wd of the same year(only cause it is a torsion bar set up) which shoud give me a rather compact rear end and should handle well as the engine will be forward of the rear axle...

DILLIGAF
DJ

#20 KitCarVenture

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Posted 01 March 2006 - 09:39 PM

Try a Harley Trike, I built a few over the years

Or if you have to - lol - you can try a Honda (not auto) trike..

#21 Tony_n_Ca

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Posted 04 March 2006 - 10:20 AM

When building any trike - you have to be concerned about wieght over the rear wheels... Or should I say past the rear wheels.. lol

It is always best to center or force most of the weight towards the middle - rather then the rear..

Using a VW or 911 914 trans will allow you to mount the engine as a rear engine.

However if you want to use a subaru engine and 2wd transaxle combo - K.I.S.S. = less work - you can go with a mid-engine mount - this should help cut down the wheelieeeees - one will have with a rear engine trike...

I have studied and build a few trikes over the years. And even though the tirkes I built were all Harley - I have seen, spoke with and even read - about those who owned or built a vw rear engine trike... Most with any HP - had wheelie-bars..

Good Luck, Tony
aka (www.KitCarVenture.com)




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