The odd world of the rickshaw wheel

When I bought the rickshaw half a decade ago, the tires and tubes were already on the rim. Last weekend, I snapped the metal stem on the left rear tube. Thankfully, it had enough air trapped in it to get home, but there was no way to add more air in the future, and all three wheels have leaked a little since day one.

I went to Bikes2Boards and picked up a tube. Then, the process of solving a mystery began. What’s it like under that tire? Here’s a glimpse:

Rickshaw wheel, tire, and tube
Rickshaw wheel, tire, and tube separated for the first time in over five years.

There’s a red tube! The tire is also odd. It essentially goes all the way around with a cut down the middle so a tube can fit in. The uncommon backside of the tire ends up functioning as the tape for the inside of the wheel, which has no tape at all.

Getting the 26 x 1.75 tire off and back on is a serious challenge. It can be done, but it is a difficult process. You have been warned. A nice change is that the wheel now has a common (in the US) Schrader valve. No need to use a Presta to Schrader valve adapter anymore.

Pedicab upgraded

The new parts have been installed. The Maxxis Hookworm tires fit in the front forks (that was a concern), but there was a different, and unexpected issue.

Brad calls me and informs me that the new handlebars aren’t going to work because there isn’t enough straight bar in the grip area. It is too short. He says he’ll just use the old bars that were on there. Well, I greatly dislike those crappy mountain bike bars, so this is not a good outcome. Brad’s taking up his wife’s garage with the Pedicab, and so waiting until tomorrow is also not a reasonable option. So, I pack up the kids and we go to Bob’s Bicycles just before they close. They have bars that look like the ones I bought, but are longer in the grip area. These worked.

Brad got everything put on the new bars, including the new trigger shifter on the right and the Ergon grips. He mounted up the tires, which are slimed and have Kenda downhill tubes (26″ x 2.4″-2.75″) inside. The tubes are a crazy 2.25mm thick. These came in a Giant brand box, but are available in a Kenda box, a Pyramid box, and who knows who else’s box.

Here’s a video showing the current state of the Pedicab:

I still need a different saddle on there, and the back is making noise which I’m sure I’ll address later. The grips are great. The new handlebar is a massive improvement, and trigger shifters are nicer than the stock setup of grip shifters in my opinion.

Brad has the Shimano 21 speed system dialed in nicely, which is much appreciated. The poor shifts were annoying, and the chain drops were not fun. Those days are over.

Mom is letting me borrow a 10 year old Garmin GPS, and it had a new handlebar mount, which I took out and installed on the handlebars. I’m still not sold on GPS for pedicab use, but I’ll give it more time.