I got distracted from the recumbent build project this week and decided I needed to build something that would produce a faster payoff for my efforts, so I built a foot bike. It really only took about 5 hours total time to build from a junk mountain bike and square tubular steel and it has tuned out well worth the effort.
The foot bike is fun to ride and everybody in my family except for our two year old can ride it without making any adjustments. It's really quiet and can carve some seriously tight corners.
I added a foot board to the frame today, but it is otherwise complete save for some paint and probably a different set of wheels.
I don't really consider it serious transportation for more than a quick 1/4 mile trip to the store or just farting around, but I might try taking the 2.5 miles to work tommorrow.
How exactly are you computing your mpg..? You might consider taking off the listings, as it is kinda skewing the top ten standings.
Otherwise it is pretty sweet. I must ask, where did you get the idea/plans to put it together? I ask because a guy down the street from me (in Japan) has a very similar setup, which looks to be hand-made.
Oops, I didn't think about the standings. I'll take it off. (When I figure out how!) :P
There are two companies that I have found who market adult sized scooters of this sort, Kickbike, and Footbike. I simply modeled my own dimensions after what they produce, though mine lacks their swoopy styling.
Oh, and the equivalent fuel economy for the bike I got from a website that calculates it based upon the calories consumed as compared to the energy available in gasoline. It took into account the bicycle type, tire type and width, combined weight, and average riding speed. It's worth noting that a good roadbike ridden at the same speed I ride is 10-20% more efficient, probably mostly due to skinnier tires and a more prone upper body position.
Well I have been doing my worst to test that question. I haven't done any drops off of high objects or anything, but bunny hops are absorbed with aplomb. One thing about this design is that it lends itself well to allot of flexing which is not something you want much of in a conventional bike, but not a bad thing here.
My first test rides of it did produce a failure at the main downtube joint, but that was only because I hadn't closed the top side of the square tubing and bunny-hopped it. Even in this weakened state after straightening it out and patching over the top side with a solid plate, it has shown no sign of failure looming.
I'll probably build another one very soon that is a little more refined in appearance with a round down tube all the way down. It will also have a 16" rear wheel vs. the 12" one on the current project because of greater wheel and tire options.
This scooter is now more or less complete. I could still do some touch-up painting on the stem and forks, but other than adding a rear brake (which I will probably be too lazy to actually do), I consider it done.
Total cost = $25 ($15 for a quality used front wheel, $5 for the donor frame forks and bar, and $5 for the tubing)