Matt Shumaker is well known in the DIY electric bike crowd over at Endless Sphere for making impressive bikes and electric drive assemblies. Lately he has turned his creative building talents to creating electric super trikes capable of great speeds, cornering, and amazingly efficient.
The motors he used in this creation are the Astro Flight 3220 designed for high-end RC models. It is 92% efficient, weighs only 5 pounds, and can put out up to 15-HP each (11,000-Watts).
At low speeds, the yellow trike below is as efficient as almost any commercially available electric bike. This trike has dual astro 3220’s and will go zero to forty in 4.5 seconds!. This particular trike weighs only 90-lbs, and was converted to a very quiet all-belt drive for the motor, instead of chain. It has whopping-huge 44V / 30-Ah battery pack made from Hobby-King LiPos that if you milk it gently, you could get a 35 mile range on this Trike.
The base frame he started with was originally a KMX Typhoon, and then he heavily modified it to his design. “…The frame was widened 5 inches, lengthened 3 inches, and lowered 3/4 inch. It will use 203mm Hope 4-piston hydraulic brakes…”
He chose 16-inch wheels with 39mm wide rims for the fronts, and a 20-inch wheel with a 47mm wide rim for the rear, and for tires he used Maxxis Hookworms . The rear tire is 1.95-inches wide.
Matt ended up selling this Trike for $7500 with a single motor (instead of dual like the build below). IF you are interested in building your own monster trike or bike, Matt sells small production drive units and motor systems and can be reached at Matt at electricbike.com. He also sells fully built ready to roll custom systems like this one from time to time. Matt built the drive system for the FFR electric trike (now re-named Outrider-USA), a ready to roll solution that is very similar to the trike below.
Check out the slideshow below for an example of one of Matt’s recent builds…wave your mouse over the photo to get his description:
50mph Electric Trike
Matt Shumaker builds a 50mph electric trike using a giant Astro Flight 3220 RC Motor and lipo battery packs from hobby king
Here is my latest build. It started life as a KMX Typhoon. Here you can see the stock trike. [img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_stripped.jpg]12210
First I stripped the frame.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_beadblasted.jpg]11310
Next the frame was bead blasted.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_widened.jpg]10960
I decided to widen, lengthen and lower the frame. I settled on 5 inches wider, 3 inches longer, and 3/4 inch lower.In this picture, you can see the frame cut apart with inserts fabricated...[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_welded.jpg]9890
..and then the frame welded together[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_reinforced.jpg]10940
Next I took the stock seat frame and welded it to the mainframe in a Space-Frame arrangement for added strength (after being stretched and lowered) and for added torsional rigidity. I like the trellis look.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_powdercoated.jpg]11510
For quite some time I have wanted a yellow and black bike or trike. To that end, I had the frame powder-coated "Safety" yellow, then clear coated.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_widerims.jpg]11860
For a high powered trike, the stock one inch wide rims weren't enough. So, I had custom rims made for me oversees. These are 1.75 inch wide (front) and 2 inch wide (rear) rims. They were also powder-coated yellow and clear coated.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_frontwheels.jpg]12270
You can also see the front rotors. These are 203mm units (up from the stock 160mm). I also installed Hope 4 piston calipers.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_driveunit.jpg]16630
The drive unit for this trike consists of two Astro Flight 3220 motors that were custom made for this application. They use larger than stock (1/2 inch as opposed to the stock 3/8 inch) shafts with outboard bearing supports. They are wound for 14,000rpm at 48 volts. These motors were dyno tested for me at 14hp each. That is 28hp total! The torque is nearly 100ft pounds at the rear wheel. I expect 0 to 60 in 3.5 seconds (it has the power to weight ratio of a shifter kart). The reduction unit I machined in my shop.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_torquearm.jpg]12390
I machined a torque arm and chain tensioner to help keep things in line.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_drivealigned.jpg]13050
Here the drive unit and torque arm assemblies are installed. This part was time consuming but very rewarding! There is such tight confines in this frame. However, I finally got all equipment mounted and lined up. Now, I need to take it all apart for final anodizing of the remaining bar aluminum parts![img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_drive2.jpg]15090
Here is the right side of the installed drive system. The bare aluminum cover will be anodized black, then engraved in the CNC.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_drive3.jpg]13940
One more shot of the drive unit from above, rear.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_tensioner3.jpg]12540
Here is one more shot from the right side showing the chain routing over the tensioner.
Here is a shot of the steering dampener. This is a basic aftermarket allow, adjustable dampener. I learned a while back that high speed on a trike requires dampening![img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_twobrakes.jpg]13140
I decided to run two separate master-cylinders (one for each front brake) that are activated individually by two fingers on one hand. The left front brake is operated by my left middle finger while the right front brake is operated by my left index finger. This gives differential braking for cornering and smokey donuts![img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_throttle.jpg]12400
The throttle is a Magura twist grip modified to be a thumb throttle. It looks really nice next to the stock KMX grip shifter.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_drivemounted.jpg]12950
One more shot of the drive unit from above, rear.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_y5.jpg]12770
You can see the custom tillers. These are upgraded tillers we CNC machine for the Catrike line. However, I decided to run them on this trike. They are nice because of the adjustability. Plus, they work much better in the "Motorcycle" layout rather than the stock vertical tiller arrangement. In the initial portion of the build I neglected to give many details of the creation of this trike. But, I must say, these tillers to not just bolt onto a KMX trike. [img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_batterybox.jpg]15910
I run Lithium Polymer batteries on my bikes. For this build I decided to make some CNC machined battery boxes. So, to that end, we machined a bunch of twin pack boxes. Here is the first box. They will all be anodized black eventually.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_batterymount1.jpg]12570
Here you can see a machined aluminum battery box mount plate. This was made to give a hard-point for the heavy battery boxes to mount to.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_batterybox2.jpg]12810
Here are the finished black anodized battery boxes mounted to the frame. The covers will also be black with CNC engraving on the top.[img src=https://www.electricbike.com/wp-content/flagallery/50mph-electric-trike/thumbs/thumbs_seatdone.jpg]12060
The trike has been turning out so well, I decided the stock seat cover just did not look very good. So, I went to an embroidery shop and had some cool stripes embroidered in yellow to match the frame. This small detail really ties the seat cover into the look of the rest of the trike
And the resulting youtube videos showing this epic electric trike in action:
Here is the original January 2010 build-thread: http://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=28&t=15634
Written by Eric, February, 2012