Putting Cast wheels on a Vulcan 500LTD - Kawasaki Vulcan Forum : Vulcan Forums
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-22-2015, 10:52 PM Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Putting Cast wheels on a Vulcan 500LTD

After 16 years with zero flat tires I have had two within the past three months. Both times the problem was related to the tube. (see this thread for some on the first incident: https://www.vulcanforums.com/forums/5...xas-rally.html ) Because of this I have made the decision to do away with the tube, at least on the rear. I found a cast rear wheel on ebay for a '91 EN500A. Installation is exactly the same as the original spoked wheel. In fact I made the swap tonight in preparation for a 750 mile round trip this weekend to my nephew's wedding in Truth or Consequences, NM.

As added insurance I have added Ride-On Tire Sealant to both tires. Tire Sealant | Tire Protection System - Ride-On

I took a 10 mile test ride to distribute the sealant and to check the feel of the 'new to me' wheel. So far, So good.

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'Biker' Bill
'97 EN500LTD 'Hidalgo' 208,000+ miles so far
'98 EN500LTD 'Sioux' 19,000 miles so far
VROC #3833 IronButt #6024
Levelland, TX


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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 12:56 PM
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Alloy rims: Questions!

Hi Bill,

I visited your website... WOW! What a WONDERFUL re-build! Looks like NEW!!!

Thanks for sharing about exchanging the wire rims for alloy rims.

I'm planning to build a high mileage hybrid reverse trike using a Vulcan500 as the donor for engine and rear rim.

I "just" posted my introduction in the new members forum and posted some images of my design with info in my intro thread: "Using a vulcan500 for a reverse trike".

After tons of research (LOTS more still to do!), I've decided on a post 1996 vulcan 500 and wanted to change to alloy rims.

I've read elsewhere that special spacer modifications were needed to do this? Was this yur case too?

Did the brake assembly switch out without modifications?

Did the switch from belt to chain rear sprocket go as easily? (Simple unbolt, replace and bolt new chain sprocket in?)

A final question involves "lateral stress" strength:

On a motorcycle, stress on swing arm and wheel is always perpendicular to the axle (straight down)... On this reverse trike, the rear swing arm and wheel will not tilt, so the stresses incurred will be lateral (side to side rather than up and down). Vehicle weight will be between 1,000 and 1,500 pounds, with the rear wheel supporting 1/3 of that weight (roughly 333lbs to 500lbs). I have no idea what the "G-forces" will be, but the intended use is for "cruising" and grocery runs, NOT for racing.

I've been over-thinking most of the systems I've been collecting (As a prototype developer, I always approach projects with "What could go wrong?" and then design to avoid that.

My worst nightmare would be lateral forces that would fold the rim up like a taco, bending at the axle... What do you think?

Also, Since the tire will never tilt, I'd like to find a flat tread (like a car tire) with a wide footprint that will fit this rim.

My concerns are:

If the tire reaches out far enough (side to side), there will be a conflict with the chain sprocket and the brake lever.

The brake lever can be overcome through machining.

Can the rear chain sprocket be pushed out away from the center of the hub, so the chain does not come near the rear, wider tire?

Note: because of the lateral/torsional forces that will be incurred, I will be building a rear swing arm from scratch, so tire/chain clearance will not be an issue.

Thank you so much!

Best Regards,
Richard
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 01:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jarel Design View Post

After tons of research (LOTS more still to do!), I've decided on a post 1996 vulcan 500 and wanted to change to alloy rims.

I've read elsewhere that special spacer modifications were needed to do this? Was this yur case too?

Did the brake assembly switch out without modifications?

Did the switch from belt to chain rear sprocket go as easily? (Simple unbolt, replace and bolt new chain sprocket in?)

Richard
The only non 500C part needed besides the cast wheels is to use the 500A speedo drive. No modifications of any kind needed. All else, drum brake, front disc rotor, spacers, chain rear sprocket are 500C parts. When using the 500C drive rubber dampers, it helps to lube with silicone grease before installing the chain sprocket assembly. The 500C drive rubber dampers are slightly tighter than the 500A, but work just fine.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-16-2015, 01:44 PM
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switching spoked rims to alloy.

Thanks for the info!

When you mention the spedo drive, I'm assuming you're talking about the front wheel mechanical speedometer output?

I'll be using automotive front wheels and axles (whichever route I go with the suspension), so I've been looking at the different magnetic drive speedometers.

Any thoughts on the strength of the alloy rims regarding lateral forces?

Thanks again!

Richard
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-17-2015, 06:48 AM Thread Starter
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Year/Make/Model: 1997 Vulcan LTD
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Jarel,

I think that most of the forces on the rear will be vertical. The front wheels will be taking the brunt of the turning forces and the rear will mainly just be 'trailing along'. (except maybe in a power slide. ) The cast wheel is quite beefy so I don't think it will be the weak link. See the pic attached to this post.

Regarding using a car tire/wider tire: I am currently using a 155/80-15 BF Goodrich car tire on the rear. I have used as wide as a 170/80-15 in a bike tire with only a couple of mm clearance at the torque arm. The widest car tire I have used was 165/80-15.

Regarding chain clearance on a wide tire: If you machine your own spacers don't forget to keep the chain aligned with the front sprocket. While we are on the subject of chain/sprockets have you considered the power necessary to push this new machine of yours? The GVWR of the Vulcan 500C is 871lbs. If your contraption is to be as much at twice that you may want to consider a smaller front sprocket. Or, keeping the original sprockets, use the electric motor for extra umph on acceleration.

Regarding fitment of the cast wheel at the rear: It is a 'bolt-on' swap! Like StarDust said, only when changing out the front will you need some parts from the 500A. (yes, the Vulcan 500 gets it speedo input from the front wheel.)

I took a look at your design plans and have a suggestion on the interaction of the ICE and EV: Why not use a one-way clutch between the drive motors with the electric motor having priority? That way when the ICE is turned off/idled/put in neutral you won't have to actually shift it down before transferring to the electric drive.

btw, if we continue on this topic we might want to start a new thread elsewhere to keep the moderators happy.
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'Biker' Bill
'97 EN500LTD 'Hidalgo' 208,000+ miles so far
'98 EN500LTD 'Sioux' 19,000 miles so far
VROC #3833 IronButt #6024
Levelland, TX


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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-17-2015, 09:09 AM
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Thank you!

Hi Bill thank you for all your info!

Good to know that the Vulcan alloy rim will accept "car" tires. Although I wanted to keep the tires fairly narrow, I wanted a wider footprint on the ground at the rear that I didn't think a rounded motorcycle tire would offer.

Regarding the power of the 500 and GVW: I never intended to have much power for starting from a stopped position... This concept was to gain as many mpg as possible. That given, I also do not want to over-strain the ICE either, which is why I wanted a chain drive as opposed to a belt drive (easier/CHEAPER to change out sprockets and chain lengths.) I will have to play with the sprocket ratios (Thinking I will most likely end up putting a larger sprocket on the wheel which will also help me establish the proper ratio between the wheel and the EV motor. Probably going to set it up for a 65mph max which is where the 6 speed on the ICE will help, creating a lower ratio for the 1st gear... I'll also have the flexibility of changing the sprockets on the EV motor shaft between the EV motor and the ICE... between those two, I'm hoping to keep both the ICE and the EV motor "torque happy". I think this is something that (even after calculating the numbers on paper, I will still need to do some experimentation on the road.

With regards to alignment of the sprockets and chains, I'll be building the frame and the rear swing arm from scratch and will design into them, the ability to adjust the EV motor side to side with fine tuning on the EV shaft which is pretty long.

Your idea of a one way clutch is interesting (Not enough coffee this morning to take it in to examine the possibilities in use, but I wasn't planning on using both the ICE and the EV motor at the same time (but of course, your idea allows for that option... maybe on steep hill climbs... have to think about it, but work is calling me.)

I will definitely start a separate build thread here when the time is right. My first "concept drawings" are WAY OFF in many ways! Pay no attention to them... only as part of the thought process in developing the design...

What I'm doing now, is collecting data/information to guide my next design attempts. I started out on the DIY electric car forum to learn more about motors, controllers, batteries etc... Then the Ninja forum when I learned that using an air cooled ICE would just not work, then I came here to learn about the Vulcan ICE and the torque it offered, then I went to the Locost car website to learn about frame and suspension design and fabrication... Whew! Can't tell you how many "bookmarks" I have in my computer or the pages of notes I've accumulated on so many subjects: (Last night I was researching seats... widths mostly... My first drawings had 24" wide seats (Learned that this was WAY to wide... The Locost car seats are usually 15" but seems a little too narrow for us... went to my books (Oh yeah, I've been collecting chassis and frame design books for race cars too! LOL!) to learn more... Then measured the widths of my hips and my wife's' (She laughed at that one!)... I also enrolled in a welding class at the local junior college... Turns out the instructor designs and build frames and suspensions on the side! =D

Anyway, your information REALLY helped! Thank you so much! Don't be surprised if you don't find me back here any time soon... I have 6 prototypes on my calendar I've been designing and fabricating prototypes for clients for 25+ years for a living and I have a LOT of info to compile and put into a format that I can easily get info from while laying out the new design.

When I create the new drawings, I'll come back here and start a new thread regarding the build.

Thank you again!

Richard.
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