Welding the bits

Welding is not currently in my list of practical skills, so I needed some help in this department.  Well, it could be in my list of skills, but Wife wasn’t prepared to let me buy a welder, pipe bender, gas torch and assorted equipment to find out.

The new wheel arrived from China within a week of ordering it (www.aliexpress.com – highly recommend it), and looks like it has all the right bits so that the scooter can finally have working brakes.  The only problem is that the new wheel won’t fit in the current frame. So modifications had to be made.

I sourced some metal tube with the right inside diameter to fit over the existing frame. The guys at Manawatu Muffler Center came to the party with a pipe bender and bent it to shape.  My angle grinder came in handy to cut the pipe to length, and then back to Manawatu Muffler Center for some welding.

Plug: The guys at Manawatu Muffler Center are great – friendly, helpful, and more than happy to help with my project even though it was outside of their normal work. They only charged me a token amount and did a great job.  I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them if you need any sort of actual muffler work done.  They are building a stock car for the boss’s daughter too, so they obviously had the skills for my job.

Here is a photo of the new tubes welded on. Perfect.  I just need to clean them up a little with a grinder (new tool! yes!) and repaint the frame to stop rust.

This photo shows the old part of the frame laid on top of the new one.  You can see it is quite a bit wider, and about 50mm longer too.

I found some old pieces of steel lying around the garage and made these new tabs to hold the rear axle.  I love my angle grinder. It makes sparks. So pretty 🙂

And here is a comparison of the new wheel (in the frame) against the old wheel.  I decided to buy a bigger wheel (20″ – BMX size) instead of sticking with the smaller 16″ wheel (kids BMX size).  The old wheel was good for about 32km/h – the bigger wheel should get closer to 40 km/h (25 mph).

Next steps are to attach the disk brakes, paint the frame, coat the fairing/body (UV protection), get a new front wheel the same size as the back one, and put it together.

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