Each year the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) sponsor a human powered vehicle competition. Student teams from across the country work to create the fastest, most efficient, and safest human powered vehicles to compete against each other. The vehicles are judged on design, safety, and performance and ranked accordingly.

As part of our senior design project, our team is designing and constructing a 2-rider recumbent bicycle.

Oven Completion and Testing : 4/28/06
 

The oven to construct the windshield was completed and tested. To the left the double elements from the stripped oven are seen. On the right a thermal camera is used to check for cold and hot spots to see if the elements need to be positioned differently.

Fairing Mold Build : 3/27/06 - 4/15/06
 
Work began on the fairing mold with the construction of a wooden frame. This frame represents the datums from the ProE fairing model. Seen on the right Will and Michael begin to fill the frame with foam to fill in the shape of the fairing.
 
To the left the fairing mold is completed having been shaped by sanding over a long period of time. On the right Will, Wes and Michael sit on the fairing mold to show the large size that the fairing will end up being.
Final Fairing Layout : 3/26/06
 
Going back with the original approach for the fairing designs the final bike's profile was laid out in cardboard and tape. Using these profiles a ProE fairing will be created from which drawings will be printed to help created the mold for fiberglassing.
Oven Build : 3/25/06
 
The oven for the windshield began with the dismantling of an old double oven. The controls and heating elements will be incorporated into the final design. Here on the right Daniel grinds down a piece of the old oven in order to have a place to mount the elements.
Steering : 3/23/06
 
Work began on the final steering of the bike today. The final steering is a modification of the very successful steering found on the original prototype. The main difference is suspension elements have been added to the forks.
Front Seat : 3/18/06
 
Today the front seat frame was finished. On the left you can see the seat being attached to the frame, and on the right you can see both the front and back seat finished frames awaiting final shaping and upholstering.
Rear Seat and Pedal Mounts : 3/15/06
 
To begin the day the rear seat was laid out on the bike in plywood sections. The dimensions for these sections came right off the test fixture. To the right Michael welds together the bracket used to mount the sections to the frame.
 
The mounted rear seat can be seen to the left and to the right Daniel takes a nap in the newly created seat. With the plywood sections mounted all that is left to do is round the corners and upholster them to add comfort and aesthetic appeal.
 
Here on the left the bottom bracket mounts can be seen in two different views. On the right the mount is held in place on the frame. Once the mounts are positioned they will be welded to the frame and the metal corners seen will be rounded down.
Final Frame : 3/9/06 - 3/11/06
 
With the frame specifications in hand the final frame was built thanks to the help of Northeast Manufacturing. Next on the agenda is to mount the pedals, idlers, and front steering to the final frame.
Final Frame Design : 3/7/06
 
The final frame was decided today. With the results of the CFD analysis, previous power curves, and ANSYS ran on the different frame setups the back-to-back frame was chosen. The fairing for the back-to-back had the smallest drag coefficient, the frame used the least material, and the power and speed curves for the set up were nearly identical to the other setups. On the top and bottom left the final frame can be seen as set up on the test fixture, and on the top right is the frame drawn up during the meeting.
 
As a celebratory gesture Daniel and Michael, seen pictured on the right, rode the back-to-back setup.
Final Fairing Material : 3/6/06
 
With the results of the tensile testing in for the fiberglass samples a decision for the fairing material was an easy task. It turned out that the lightest weight composite was also the second strongest, and thus it was chosen to keep the overall weight of the fairing at a minimum. The composite chosen was a layer of fiberglass with a cotton filler material which added strength with only a slight increase in overall mass.
Roll Bar Layout : 3/5/06
 
In order to get a better visualization of the roll bar for the final bike Daniel constructed a cardboard version. This allowed the team to see how large the final fairing will be as well as how much material will really be necessary in the final bike. Using this layout the final roll bar was drawn.
Steering Iteration : 3/4/06
 
In an attempt to reduce the cross sectional area of the bike the steering was brought in closer to the bike and moved behind the front driver. However, after testing, this steering setup was deemed too unstable.
Frame Analysis : 3/3/06
 
After drawing line representations of the team's various frame designs Scott tried different loading scenarios to see how the frame faired. Here you can see a sample of the frames currently being analyzed.
Fiberglass Tensile Testing : 3/2/06
 
After creating multiple samples of fiberglass using differing numbers of layers and filler material dogbones were cut out to perform tensile testing. To the right one of the many samples is being pulled to find its tensile strength. With the data gathered during this process a final decision will be made for the proper layering to be used for the fairing.
University of Kentucky 2005/2006