5 Boro Bike Tour Tandem Trike: Ladies and Gentlemen, The TUBES!

written by JerseyJim on February 6, 2015 in Projects with no comments


The tubes have arrived! No, I don’t mean that 80’s pop band, but the tubes that will make up the trike frame. I ordered them from Discount Steel. Even though there are plenty of places near my home where I could have found the right material, I would have had to go to those metal yards during normal business hours. Since I work during those same hours, having them delivered is much more convenient.

This is my first time ordering from Discount Steel and I am very impressed with their service. I’m used to my metal orders arriving in a standard cardboard box. Instead of a box, my order was shipped in a heavy cardboard tube. It’s the same kind of tube that’s used to form concrete piers. Not only is the package compact, but the tube protects the contents from getting damaged. The shipper would really have to mishandle the package in order for the tubes to get crushed.

The tubes also arrived a week earlier than projected. Having an extra week for fabrication is huge. Just ask me on May 2nd, a week before the tour, if I’d like an extra week. I’m sure I will. I’m going to make sure that I use that time wisely.

So what you see in the photo are (3) 5 foot lengths of 2 inch square tube, (1) 5 foot length of 1.5 inch square tube, (1) 5 foot length and (1) 2 foot length of 1 inch square tube and (1) 2 foot length of 1/2″ square tube. This should be enough for the trike frame.

You may be wondering why the longest length of tube is 5 feet. That has nothing to do with the trike plans and everything to do with shipping cost. Here’s a tip: Keep the length of whatever you’re ordering 60 inches or less. If you go over 60 inches, the shipper will charge you an oversize package fee. Even though I could have probably saved some money in material by ordering a longer length, it would have cost me in shipping. That extra cost would have canceled out any savings on materials. Total cost of the material you see, minus shipping, was $74.55.

What’s next? I’ll measure and cut the main frame tubes. Then I’ll prep the the tubes for fit up and welding.

Since the Viking Recumbent Tandem Trike plans are copyrighted and I completely respect the work that the Atomic Zombie crew put into developing the design and plans, I won’t be publishing any dimensions of the frame. However, I will share details of any original modifications or improvements I make to the design so that you can use them in your own build if you like.

That’s it for now. Talk to ya later.