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How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?

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jtprocella Offline
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Joined: Jan 2013
Post: #1
How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
hi, i have a new three wheel bike that i will be touring around the west coast and i would like to covert it to a 3 seed bike. does anyone have any ideals or web sites with the info needed for me to do this myself? i have built my own trailer and need the gears to go up hills and over the long roads from Yuma, AZ to Seattle, WA. speed in not the issue, load is the problem.


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Jan 24, 2013 12:48 PM
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nfmisso Offline
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San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,331
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Post: #2
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
Hi JT;

On bike it is trivial conversion; on the two rear wheel trike, it maybe a significant challenge.

We need a side view to start, and probably some close ups around the rear sprocket.

Nigel
Jan 24, 2013 01:15 PM
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jtprocella Offline
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Post: #3
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
(Jan 24, 2013 01:15 PM)nfmisso Wrote:  Hi JT;

On bike it is trivial conversion; on the two rear wheel trike, it maybe a significant challenge.

We need a side view to start, and probably some close ups around the rear sprocket.

new photo
new photo


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Jan 24, 2013 01:29 PM
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painkiller Offline
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Peoria, IL. USA
Posts: 1,434
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Post: #4
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
retro fitting will be the issue but there are many company's that sell similar hubs
http://www.industrialbicycles.com/hub_options.htm


There are two kinds of people in the world, "Those who help themselves to people, and those who help people!"
Jan 24, 2013 08:21 PM
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nfmisso Offline
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San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,331
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Post: #5
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
HI Joseph;

The three speed Schwinn trike uses a Sturmey-Archer hub. Your best bet is a hub from them with freewheel and internal drum brake; but you need one that can mount two sprockets at the same time. I suggest calling or e-mailing them directly.
http://www.sturmey-archer.com/contact

You are going to have to give consideration to sprocket and chainring sizes to get useable gear ratios. Having more ratios will not help hill climbing if they are the wrong ratios.

Regarding standard wheels for your trailer.
First references:
http://sheldonbrown.com/harris/axles.html
http://www.fastenal.com/web/products/detail.ex?sku=0162077
http://www.fastenal.com/web/products/detail.ex?sku=11505184

Of standard bike wheel axle sizes, M10x1.0 is the easiest threaded rod to get; look for two rear wheels, same size, with aluminum rims. Freewheel bolt on style is fine. Two of these would be fine:
http://www.amazon.com/Avenir-Joytec-Weinmann-Freewheel-26-Inch/dp/B003RLCA66/ref=sr_1_1?s=cycling&ie=UTF8&qid=1359225605&sr=1-1
The axle nuts and bearing cones will thread on to the M10x1.0 rod. The wheels will rotate, the rod will be stationary. Ideally, you will grab on to the rod on both sides of each wheel with your trailer frame. You need to make sure that you have a good way to replace tubes.

For your trip, you want to use bike and trailer wheels of the same size so that you only need one size of tubes.

Definitely use thorn resistant tube and tire liners.

Nigel
Jan 26, 2013 11:45 AM
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jtprocella Offline
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Posts: 10
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Post: #6
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
                       
        thank you very much . i will have my hands full doing this, here are a few shots of close ups
Jan 26, 2013 07:00 PM
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nfmisso Offline
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San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,331
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Post: #7
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
Hi Joseph;

Your pictures are excellent.

It looks like you can move the sprocket on the axle side to side; which will probably be required.

You have a drum brake; you should get an IGH (Internal Geared Hub) with a drum brake - Sturmey-Archer and Shimano both have these.

The IGH you get also needs to have a really long axle. On the third picture down, measure the distance over the outer most nuts - this is the MINIMUM axle length you need; longer is okay. On the same picture, measure the inside distance between the frame pieces at the point your current transfer hub bolts on - this is the OLD (over lock nut dimension). The hub you get must have an OLD that is no more than 2½mm more than your measurement. It can be less than what you measure because you can add washers.

You will probably have to alter the overall gearing after getting your drivetrain built up and tested. The easiest method is to change the chain ring on the crank (may require a different crankset).

Nigel
Jan 27, 2013 09:55 AM
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jtprocella Offline
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Posts: 10
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Post: #8
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
(Jan 27, 2013 09:55 AM)nfmisso Wrote:  Hi Joseph;

Your pictures are excellent.

It looks like you can move the sprocket on the axle side to side; which will probably be required.

You have a drum brake; you should get an IGH (Internal Geared Hub) with a drum brake - Sturmey-Archer and Shimano both have these.

The IGH you get also needs to have a really long axle. On the third picture down, measure the distance over the outer most nuts - this is the MINIMUM axle length you need; longer is okay. On the same picture, measure the inside distance between the frame pieces at the point your current transfer hub bolts on - this is the OLD (over lock nut dimension). The hub you get must have an OLD that is no more than 2½mm more than your measurement. It can be less than what you measure because you can add washers.

You will probably have to alter the overall gearing after getting your drivetrain built up and tested. The easiest method is to change the chain ring on the crank (may require a different crankset).


Thanks for the info, a lot for a Neb to digest, hoping i can understand all that i have and need to do on this project. any other ideals and/or helpful hints from other members is and will be much appreciated. Joseph!!
Jan 27, 2013 11:08 AM
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Bill Offline
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NY,USA
Posts: 2,766
Joined: Sep 2009
Post: #9
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
There is also this way I found interesting. There is also a replaceable hub that someone offers for sale about a 100.00 USD or so. I will try to find the link, but for now there is this article...
http://www.sevesteen.com/2008/10/converting-schwinn-meridian-to-multi.html

Good maintenance to your Bike, can make it like the wheels are, true and smooth!
Feb 1, 2013 08:02 AM
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nfmisso Offline
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San Jose, CA
Posts: 2,331
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Post: #10
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
Bill; GREAT article.

Joseph - this is a much better approach than the one I suggested.

I would not do it exactly like the article though.
* McMaster has M10 x 1 chrome-moly (4130) threaded rod: M10 1 95245A100 $30.09 300mm (12") long. This is too replace the axle in your current hub so that you can move it to the left far enough to complete clear the gears on the new freewheel.
* Sunrace 14-28 5 speed freewheel. http://www.amazon.com/Sunrace-Freewheel-14-28T-5-Speed-Black/dp/B000AYB57S/
* this RD: http://www.amazon.com/Shimano-Tourney-TX55-Speed-Derailleur/dp/B003ZMBNG0/
* cable set: http://www.amazon.com/Bell-Bike-Fix-Cable-Set/dp/B002GCALOU/ (also available at Wal-mart).
* chain: http://www.amazon.com/KMC-Bicycle-5-Speed-32-Inch-116L/dp/B0013C4JGU/ (or one from Wal-mart for 10-24 speeds)
* chain tool (I got mine from Wal-mart).
* shifters: http://www.amazon.com/SRAM-Bicycle-Twist-Shifter-6-Speed/dp/B0017YRQKA/ (5,6,7 & 8 speed for use with Shimano RD)

Like the article said, mounting a FD would be very difficult, the main problem being the upper tube is right where the FD needs to reside.

If I were doing this; I would see how far to the left I could move the rear hub, with a goal of trying to fit a 7 speed freewheel.

Nigel
Feb 1, 2013 10:10 AM
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jtprocella Offline
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Posts: 10
Joined: Jan 2013
Post: #11
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
(Feb 1, 2013 10:10 AM)nfmisso Wrote:  Bill; GREAT article.

Joseph - this is a much better approach than the one I suggested.

I would not do it exactly like the article though.
* McMaster has M10 x 1 chrome-moly (4130) threaded rod: M10 1 95245A100 $30.09 300mm (12") long. This is too replace the axle in your current hub so that you can move it to the left far enough to complete clear the gears on the new freewheel.
* Sunrace 14-28 5 speed freewheel. http://www.amazon.com/Sunrace-Freewheel-14-28T-5-Speed-Black/dp/B000AYB57S/
* this RD: http://www.amazon.com/Shimano-Tourney-TX55-Speed-Derailleur/dp/B003ZMBNG0/
* cable set: http://www.amazon.com/Bell-Bike-Fix-Cable-Set/dp/B002GCALOU/ (also available at Wal-mart).
* chain: http://www.amazon.com/KMC-Bicycle-5-Speed-32-Inch-116L/dp/B0013C4JGU/ (or one from Wal-mart for 10-24 speeds)
* chain tool (I got mine from Wal-mart).
* shifters: http://www.amazon.com/SRAM-Bicycle-Twist-Shifter-6-Speed/dp/B0017YRQKA/ (5,6,7 & 8 speed for use with Shimano RD)

Like the article said, mounting a FD would be very difficult, the main problem being the upper tube is right where the FD needs to reside.

If I were doing this; I would see how far to the left I could move the rear hub, with a goal of trying to fit a 7 speed freewheel.
thank you for all the info i finely have all the needed parts, tools and hopefully the knowledge to work on and do the job, may need a few pointers and or ideals as to what and in what order to go about it, well see. check out my other post for updated photos and links to the pages i am working on for the build and the trip i will be embarking on soon.
thanks again and i will keep in touch and may even be thru you neck of the woods in a few months from now, later
mock up of the final build.
I still have to pack the bearings, install piping around wheels, fenders and lights on the trailer as well as add the cargo box and flags. oh and paint too. this whole rig will shine with pride of me doing it my self and who said you can't teach an old dog new tricks. enjoy and check back in a few weeks for the final build photos!!!


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Mar 14, 2013 11:06 PM
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Snakeler1 Offline
Member

Westfield , MA.
Posts: 12
Joined: Nov 2013
Post: #12
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
[quote='nfmisso' pid='25980' dateline='1359305722']
Hi Joseph;

Your pictures are excellent.

It looks like you can move the sprocket on the axle side to side; which will probably be required.

You have a drum brake; you should get an IGH (Internal Geared Hub) with a drum brake - Sturmey-Archer and Shimano both have these.

The IGH you get also needs to have a really long axle. On the third picture down, measure the distance over the outer most nuts - this is the MINIMUM axle length you need; longer is okay. On the same picture, measure the inside distance between the frame pieces at the point your current transfer hub bolts on - this is the OLD (over lock nut dimension). The hub you get must have an OLD that is no more than 2½mm more than your measurement. It can be less than what you measure because you can add washers.

You will probably have to alter the overall gearing after getting your drivetrain built up and tested. The easiest method is to change the chain ring on the crank (may require a different crankset). [[Hello , this is good info for me as well. Glad I found this thread. I was looking on Amazon for 3 speed internal hubs and found some. When I clicked on the reviews and details for those , they said it didn't work on the Schwinn meriden because the axle is to short because on the Schwinn it is used to attach the frame together as well. I'm going to sift through the information from you and Bill and see what I can figure out. Also I'm going to see if there is any instructions on taking the rear cog off. Haven't had any luck searching the web.For my application I'm trying to get more top end and just adding a 3 speed probably wouldn't accomplish this unless I changed the gearing. This would then add a couple extra gears anyway. Hope it is allowed to reply in the middle of this thread, cause I don't want to be rude. I will follow this thread and try to figure out what to do for my problem. I left you a message after you sent me information on the gear ring and cog options. Thanks
Scott] ]
Nov 10, 2013 07:29 PM
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cradom Offline
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South-East Texas
Posts: 33
Joined: Dec 2010
Post: #13
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?

Craig Domingue - registered east Texas hick.
Nov 12, 2013 09:42 AM
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redonestorm Offline
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Posts: 1
Joined: Jul 2014
Post: #14
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
whats the model no of this bike, and does it supply power to both wheels or just one wheel. thanks.
Jul 7, 2014 08:19 PM
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cny-man Offline
Senior Member

Syracuse, NY
Posts: 387
Joined: Jul 2012
Post: #15
RE: How do i convert a single speed 3 wheel bike to a 3 speed?
I don't want to discourage you but I don't believe there is a route between those two end points that does not include mountains, not just hills. Most cyclists would be challenged just getting a loaded bicycle over the approximately 30,000 vertical feet of climbing that would be involved, let alone on a 3 wheeled bike with probably 100+ lbs of equipment and trailer.
Jul 8, 2014 04:50 AM
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