Trike City Scooters

This page is for installing our DIY trike conversion kit to the VOG engine. The VOG engine is the Linhai-Yamaha engine. Use on many of the Chinese scooters as well as the earlier Yamaha scooters.

The VOG style engine is used on DAIX, Icebear, TMEC, Linhai and other 260cc to 400cc scooters. The piston cylinder head is horizontal to the engine, pointing forward.

The CN250 engine is the Honda 250cc and used on the older Honda's such as the Honda Helix, CFMoto, Jonway, SHEN, ZNEN, and many other Chinese scooters. It is also known as the CF250 and the CH250. The piston cylinder head is vertical to the engine, pointing up about 75 degrees.

If you are installing the trike conversion kit to other than a VOG engine 260/300/400 you need to use the Custom Installation link.

On this page we will install the kit to a scooter that has the Linhai-Yamaha VOG engine. This will be pretty much a straight forward installation. For the most installations you will not need to modify anything. On some scooters you may need to modify the fender brackets or the exhaust if the muffler interferes with the fender brackets. And if you use our 31, 34, or 37 tooth sprocket instead of the 25 tooth included in your kit; you will also need to weld the spline plate to the spline sleeve. I explain this later on.

Before you start installing the kit, read the entire instructions below at least once.

Our first step is to align and center the scooter and rear axle assembly. We are using a motorcycle lift for our work space. You may be assembling on your garage floor. Put some narrow tape on your work space in a straight line about 2 feet longer than you scooter. The narrower the tape the better, 1/4 inch is great. Roll your scooter onto the tape placing both the the center of the front and rear tire on the center of the tape.

In photo 1, to the right, the front and rear tires have been centered on our center line (your tape), and the rear axle assembly has been approximately centered to the line. The center stand is being used to support the scooter and engine. The front tire is locked down to touch the ground. The the rear tire has been removed and the *25 tooth spline and sprocket* installed in place of the rear tire. The axle carrier has been bolted back on. The axle carrier is the black bracket on the right side of the scooter that the muffler is supported by and secures the right side of the axle. The actual name for the axle is the output shaft.

*If you already have a large tooth count sprocket, spline and spline plate, install them now, do not weld yet. Just place the on. See the sprocket installation section first.

When you remove the caliper, do not disconnect it from the brake hose yet. In photo 1 we disconnected it and connect the new rear caliper. Bleeding brakes on scooters is a small project in itself. We used method 1 to bleed the caliper which is described later on.

Now is a good time to discuss the different sprockets available. The 25 tooth sprocket will fit this VOG without cutting the brake stand-off pin. However you will loose a lot of top end speed. The 25 tooth is good for areas like San Francisco a 31 tooth for hilly terrain; when installing the kit on a 260cc. For Most of you will want to use the 34 tooth sprocket on a 260 - 300. On the 400 you will want to use the 37 tooth sprocket. In most cases this would require you cutting off the stand-off pin.

In photo 2, to the left, you will notice that we had to cut back the brake stand-off pin on the output shaft housing to make clearance for our sprocket. You would not know this was in the way till you try and line up the sprockets on the output shaft to the rear axle assembly.

Now you will notice in photo 1 we supported the engine with a jack and wood blocks. We need to do this to install the swing arm. We also removed the air filter box and some body panels. Unbolt the shocks from the engine and axle carrier. You need to get access to the engine pivot bolt, remove it. Place the kit's swing arm in place and install it using the long bolt in the kit. Photo 3 to the right shows the pivot bolt at the front of the swing arm.

Place bolts in the rear bottom brackets of the swing arm to the engine shock mounts. If you are planning on using a larger sprocket, which is highly recommend, there is no need to bolt them up yet. We just want to hold the rear of the swing arm in place while we line up the rear. Bolt the rear axle assembly to the swing arm and ensure that the sprocket on the rear lines up exactly with the sprocket on the axle carrier without scraping.

Oh, so the sprockets don't not line up? Not a problem. On the VOG, there are 3 different output shaft housing. Type #1 (shown in photo2 above) requires just the standard spocket setup as the 25 tooth sprocket that comes with the kit, or a larger tooth count sprocket as shown in photo 4 below on the left. Type #2 requires the standard sprocket setup with low profile bolts shown in photo 5 below on the right. And type #3 uses an enlarged hole in the sprocket so the sprocket can clear the output shaft housing as show in photo 5 below on the right also.

Installing the output shaft sprocket and spline plate.

If you are using the 25 tooth sprocket and spline and the rear sprocket lines up this section is not used. If you are using a large tooth sprocket you need to read this section. Here I use the term fitting and installing, there is a difference.

In photo 4 above, you see the spline plate laying on top of the sprocket. You will notice that the output shaft sprocket and spline plate have a number stamped into them. They are marked in red and are the number 1. The number 1 does not matter; it can be 1, 2, 3 or 4. When installing the spline plate and sprocket, the number must be facing you in the same direction as shown. You must mate the holes so that the stamped numbers are next to each other. These holes are pre-drilled 1/2 degree off 90 degrees so the two pieces can only mate one way. This will in sure that the sprocket is centered to the spline plate. When you order the kit for the VOG engine the center hole on the spline plate will be pre-drilled for you; unless you had us do the machining to your spline plate already. You will also notice that the sprocket is 3/8" thick with a step down on one side about 1/16". When installing this step faces the spline plate as shown.

The first thing you need to do is the fitting. The fitting is done differently. The number on the spline plate is facing you and the number on the sprocket is facing away from you. When fitting the step on the sprocket faces away from the spline plate.Use two bolts to hold the sprocket and spline plate tightly together. We are not concerned if the sprocket is centered yet. We are only concerned in the two sprockets being line up exactly. The sprockets must be in the same plane. When lining up the sprocket you need to use a straight edge like a framing square, having the straight edge touch the front and back teeth of both the output shaft sprocket and the rear axle assembly sprocket. Should you not be able to do this because the output shaft housing is in the way, you will need to have the center of the sprocket enlarged to clear the housing; as in photo 5 above. Once the two sprocket are lined up Tack Weld the spline to the spline plate. The smaller the tack the less warpage. So use smaller tack and put them at 0, 180, 90, 270. Just enough to keep them together and a square as possible.

Let me explain why the difference. Once you have lined up (fitted) the the sprocket to the rear axle assembly sprocket you will need to weld the spline plate to the spline. It is near impossible not to distort the spline plate when welding by hand. So after welding the spline plate's mating surface needs to be surfaced. That is it need to be turn flat and square again. Otherwise your sprocket is going to wobble all over the place. To surface the spline plate's mating surface we will be cutting 1/16" off. The step in the sprocket now takes up that 1/16", bring your sprocket back inline with the rear axle assemble sprocket.

If you are doing a custom installation click here to go back.

Now that we have the sprockets lined up we can take off the axle carrier, shocks and rear axle assembly. Weld up the spline plate and spline and reassemble the scooter, but not body panels yet.

Be sure you have the correct size spacers between the spline and axle carrier. Fit the chain and adjust it, remember you can always get half links. Fit the chain to the most forward position possible so that you can adjust as the chain stretches.

Hook up the rear caliper, see bleeding the brakes section first. Next item is the air box. The kit comes with a foam air filter that you may use; or you can make a couple of brackets and mount yours. Remember if you have removed any body panels you air box may be in the way. Check the tire pressure and install the muffler and the fenders. If the right fender is interfering with the muffler you will need to add washers to the bracket or modify your muffler or fender brackets as we did here.

You will notice that we did not reinstall the body parts yet. .The reason is that after our test ride (if we are a heavy person) the suspension maybe a too little soft, we can add a 3rd shock. A 3rd shock would need you to make a bracket at the top between the two shock mounts under the seat and one on the swing arm inline with the two existing shocks.

Now we need to fine tune the rear end alignment. There are two chain adjusting screws on the bottom back of the swing arm where the rear axle assembly bolts on. Have someone drive the scooter, starting off slow and on level ground. If the handle bars do not wattle when taking off you have done a great job. If it wattles you need to make adjustments. Now we can finish assembling any body parts we removed earlier.

Wattle is the effect of one rear tire pulling more than the other; causing the front wheel to pull left than right shaking the handle bar back and forth. If the rear axle assembly is not a true right angle to the center line of the bike, one tire will be in front of the opposite side, even a fraction of an inch, causing a wattle. Upon completion of the installation you will be able to adjust the rear axle assemble by about 1/32 of an inch to fine tune the right angle using the chain tension adjusters. A 1/32" is a lot on a 3 wheel short wheel base. It is also to be noted that a small amount of wattle is to be expected at low speed, even if the axle assemble is a perfect 90 degrees to the center line. The differential will put the torque to one wheel, more the the other on take off. The tire with the most torque will push the bike forward on that side causing a slight low speed wattle.

Bleeding the Brakes

There are a few methods to bleed the brakes. In all case we suggest that you fill the caliper and hose up with Dot 3 brake fluid before connecting the brake hose to your hose. We do this by using a squirt oil can, the old metal oil cans with the pull lever and open the bleeder valve on the caliper. Be sure the master cylinder never runs out of brake fluid.

  1. With the rear axle assembly unbolted from the scooter, turn the assembly on its' side, on one wheel with the caliper closest to the ceiling. Open the bleeder valve and leave it open for awhile; vibrate the hose a little even now and then. After a short time you may see fluid dripping out of the bleeder valve. If not close the valve start to bleed the brake normal until some fluid come out of the valve. Then place the rear back in place.
  2. With the caliper disconnect from the scooter, disconnect the caliper from the axle assemble and reroute the hose over the top of the assembly. Hold the caliper up in the air as high as you can. Follow the instruction in method 1.
  3. Use a vacuum bleeder.

Now once you know that the caliper is full open the master cylinder, looking inside of it and very, very slowly squeeze the lever. once you see a air bubble emerge STOP. Do not pull the lever any farther, wait a few seconds and repeat the process until no more air emerges. Vibrate the brake hose and repeat the process. When on more air emerges use your vacuum pump or manual bleed the brake until you have a pedal.

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