The end–building a 12 pound body

Now you’ve come to the love-hate part of the project. Real creativity, with all its emotional taxation, is now called into play. You need those orange driveway markers from your hardware store, plus black 1/4″ tent poles from Tent Pole Technology out West, plus aluminum ferrules from also out West, to connect poles together. First extend the front and rear of the quadricycle to receive the poles and start bending! Use the driveway markers for sharp bends. Use crossways loops to stabilize the shape you want. tie it all together with plastic zip ties, which you’ll get to love. Then go to a big city and buy 3 sheets of 1/16″ ocume plywood at $40/ sheet. In New England, Bolter plywood in Somerville Mass is great. Use brown construction paper to make a pattern for each flat section of the body and then use it to cut the plywood, making sure that the plywood’s grain runs in the direction of least bending. Then paint two coats inside and out and use 1″ strapping tape to hold those panels in place. Then use vinyl electrical tape to cover the strapping tape. That’s enough for the first year. Go out and ride the heck out of the machine. Next year you’ll improve it. Maybe epoxy the panel junctions. maybe enclose the cockpit.

Here’s the cockpit view. You’ll see the schlumpf front sprocket which changes from 1:1 to 1:1.67 by kicking the axle sidewise with the heal. the low gear 1:1 is only used up steep hills. you’ll see the inner-tube seat suspension, the ‘dashboard’ having a bike speedo on top, a power switch next below, the the ammeter (very important) and then you might want a watt-hour meter to give a warning of the end of the range. I put a voltmeter in there, but the voltage always stays 53-49 volts and doesn’t give much help. I have Utah trike fenders front and back. The large front side panels are easily removable for repairs as is a panel under the rear axle. To get in, you put your butt on the top of the tub and grip the blue wooden top of the seat. Then put each foot on the yellow cross frame and lower yourself into the seat and then put your feet on the pedals. Make sure you put a flag on the back, and eventually lots of lights. Enjoy!

PS.  Due to a recent decline in my health, I’d love to find a new owner for Sunbeam.  I’m open to offers and imagine that something in the area of half the cost of materials would be fair.  So even if you would like to change this car, but would like to start with a quadricycle and electric assist, you might be interested in using this as a start.  My email is jorybrenda (at)     As I remember the materials totalled about $5000


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