Show Me Your Worksman Trike

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Dec 18, 2015
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I picked this gem up on CL, but it was not recognizable as the same trike shown here. It was spray painted blue, had wobbly rear wheels, 3 mismatched tires, and rusty handlebars. The frame was slightly bent, not enough to hurt anything - I consider that kind of a badge of honor dedicated to the hard use this trike must have seen in whatever industrial application it was employed, or like the scars you find in leather that assure you it's the real deal.. I stripped off the blue rattle can paint down to the original Worksman safety orange, and found that the frame is scrapped down to bare metal at the step-over, where work boots must have dragged across it thousands of times over the years. Once I got the frame clean enough for my tastes, I gave it three coats of glossy clear coat to preserve the shiny bare steel and other aspects of the factory abuse patina.


I trued the rear wheels, disassembled, cleaned, lubed, and reassembled the BB and swapped out the original 32 tooth star chain ring for a 40 tooth clover leaf. I changed out the pillow block bearing for brand news ones with grease fittings. I swapped out the horrible monster seat for an inexpensive soft saddle. I swapped out the funky Wokrsman chain guard for an old chrome chain guard I had to modify to fit. Since I planned to add an electric motor, I searched for a new 1 inch threaded fork with disc bosses, and found that was a difficult item to source unless I went with a budget suspension fork, so that's what I did.


I used a 24 inch EBikeKits direct drive motor-hub wheel I had around, and installed all new controller, display, and cables. I fitted a mechanical disc brake. I built a battery array out of knock-off Dewalt 20 volt drill batteries. I did a combination series and parallel wiring job to bring the 4 20V 6AH batteries to 40V 12AH.

I put two pairs each in parallel, then put the two pairs in series. These seem to work great. I had to program the controller to "expect" 36 volts. When set to 48 volts it gives an immediate low voltage error.


Of course, I also installed three matching tires, some old Schwinn rubber block pedals. I got some chrome BMX narrow riser cross bar handlebars - if anybody knows a better name for the bars in the pix, please let me know. I installed an old chrome fender from an early 60s Schwinn - I had to drill out the rivets on the original struts and shorten some new ones I had laying around, due to the facts that the only place I could secure the struts was half way up the fork.

Anyway, this turned out really well. It rides great and looks funky. Nobody looking at it, other than maybe some of you guys here, will appreciate how much work went into getting it to this point, and how good it feels to have it just about done to the point that any future work will be "modification" rather than "completion."
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PS: the battery array was just something I had wanted to do since seeing someone else on YouTube do a similar project years ago when Li ioan ebike batteries were still very costly. It would be cheaper today to buy a purpose built ebike battery, but I lucked into 8 Dewalt knockoff 20V batteries, 4 "power wheel adapters," and a Dewalt knock-off 4-battery charger, all for free. Having 8 batteries, I can have a spare set charged up and ready to go if I deplete the set that's onboard. That stuff would have cost about $400 retail on Amazon if I had to buy it. - remember, it is all knock-off merchandise, not Dewalt branded. If it had been Dewalt branded, I'm guessing maybe $750?

The photos inside the parking garage were done with an extremely bright LED of the sort you might use a a street light or commercial parking lot light placed on the floor so the entire trike is kind of lighted from below as well as by the garage lights. I liked that effect.
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That is indeed a cool trike! :)