Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://hdl.handle.net/10356/155220
Title: Development of an improved design methodology and front steering design guideline for small-wheel bicycles for better stability and performance
Authors: Paudel, Milan
Yap, Fook Fah
Keywords: Engineering::Mechanical engineering
Issue Date: 2020
Source: Paudel, M. & Yap, F. F. (2020). Development of an improved design methodology and front steering design guideline for small-wheel bicycles for better stability and performance. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part P: Journal of Sports Engineering and Technology, 234(3), 227-244. https://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1754337120919608
Journal: Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part P: Journal of Sports Engineering and Technology
Abstract: The maneuverability and compactness of small-wheel and folding bicycles are greatly appreciated. Nonetheless, the performance of these small-wheel bicycles as compared to the big-wheel bicycles has always been questioned. They are often blamed for being less stable, wobbly, or twitchy. It is still unclear how the performance of the small-wheel bicycle designs can be improved. Both small- and big-wheel bicycles are designed with similar ergonomics; therefore, the focus has been on the front steering design. The steering design parameters of 91 big-wheel and 27 small-wheel bicycles were compared, bearing in mind the available front steering design guidelines to understand: (1) the influence of big-wheel bicycle’s frame design on small-wheel bicycles and (2) most common range of design parameters used in current bicycle designs. The analysis showed a strong influence of current big-wheel bicycle design practice on front frame parameter selection of small-wheel bicycles. Furthermore, the self-stability comparison over the most common design range confirmed the lesser stability in the current small-wheel bicycle designs at normal riding speed. However, it was also found that the lesser stability was not the result of small wheels per se, but rather owing to an inadequacy in the current design approach to addressing the complex influence of reducing wheel size and bicycle frame design on its stability and performance. Therefore, an improved design methodology was adopted by incorporating the bicycle dynamics into the current design approach and the front steering design guidelines for small-wheel bicycles have been developed. The guidelines contradict the current small-wheel bicycle design practice, as they recommend steeper headtube angles for small-wheel bicycles. The guidelines were validated with good agreement between the theoretical and experimental results on two prototype 20-inch-wheel bicycles having counter-intuitive steering geometry.
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10356/155220
ISSN: 1754-3371
DOI: 10.1177/1754337120919608
Rights: © 2020 IMechE. All rights reserved.
Fulltext Permission: none
Fulltext Availability: No Fulltext
Appears in Collections:MAE Journal Articles

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