The twin seater electric assisted delta trike with combined body finally hits the road.
By Giacomo Righi
It took months of work, but to be honest it has been quite a quick work, because the lack af free time has been the real trouble both for Marco and for me indeed.
The new (possibly definitive) nickname is "Triciclobus", with reference to the yellow and white schoolbus carrying students to and from school: in facts the main planned use for this commuting velomobile is bringing my daughter to school and then proceed to where I work, in an attempt to replace the car in its most frequent usage and in the most clever way. Of course every further usage, from doing shopping to tourism can be possible, with the purpose of riding on pedals everywhere and, above all, with all weather conditions.
A previous test with the incomplete body can be seen in this video here:
This late afternoon, on a cold winter day, my daughter and I finally took out the weird machine in its official first stage build state for a ride and some shopping in the city, simulating the typical ride downtown. The open front of the body and the freezing temperatures, together with the stillness in a fixed position of the passenger, turned out to expose my poor daughter to some cryogenic treatment... but she wasn't dressed up with proper trousers and boots, and sure after this test I'll think about some further protection for her legs and feet. Here's a video taken along the ride:
The trike is made cutting and welding together three bicycles. The seats are made out of carbon fiber (discarded from much more refined recumbent bikes, Marco's reVs, due to some dimension mistakes). The body is made by a structure of PVC pipes, the ones commonly used to hold electric cables both indoor and outdoor, properly shaped with the heat gun; upon the pipes there are coroplast panels and mudguards, plus some thin transparent plastic (sorry I don't have more details, I just tell you that I searched variouos shops selling stuff for DIY works until I found the most satisfactory material). On the left side of the canopy, an aluminium tube serves as hinge for opening the canopy itself.
More details can be found in the pages of this very blog, following the tag BASTAUTODOVENONSERVONO (meaning: "no more cars where they're not needed"), with more videos and pictures.
In this short video, entitled "lights: like at Christmas" you can also see the redundant lighting set... safety first:
The most important test, still missing at this time, is the rain: I studied a way to stay decently dry under the rain even though the pedals turn together with the steering, now only direct experience will tell if it works satisfactorily. So please keep fingers crossed along with me for the first rainy day!