# Easy-to-build steerable nosewheel?

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#### cluttonfred

##### Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
OK, I am thinking of going with a steerable nosewheel for the single-seat design I am working through Raymer's book for homebuilders, mostly because I did my microlight training with a steerable nosewheel and motorcycle-style single handbrake on the joystick and I like the combination. I would like to come up with a simple steerable nosewheel design, both the fork end and the steering bit, ideally bolted together with little or no welding. Does anyone have any inspirations to share? Cheers, Matthew

#### Hugh Lorimer

##### Well-Known Member
Is this any help? Hughie.............

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#### cluttonfred

##### Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
Thanks, Hugh, I did see your design in another thread but I am looking for something simpler and easier to fabricate. I was wondering, for example, if I might add delrin or nylon spacers to either side of a square aluminum or steel tube, a similar plug inside the tube to prevent crushing, aluminum or steel plate sides for the fork and a coulple of AN bolts through the whole works? I was also kicking around ideas for a double nosewheel, perhaps using a pair of oversize electric scooter wheels.

##### Well-Known Member
Can you use a bicycle front end as a base? A friend races downhill mtb's, and they have a very solid, light, long travel suspension.
I have also seen single-sided bicycle ffont ends.

What is the design suspension load ?
What height (ground to top support bearing) ?

#### Jay Kempf

##### Curmudgeon in Training (CIT)
Can you use a bicycle front end as a base? A friend races downhill mtb's, and they have a very solid, light, long travel suspension.
I have also seen single-sided bicycle ffont ends.

What is the design suspension load ?
What height (ground to top support bearing) ?

#### Aerowerx

##### Well-Known Member
I have thought about bicycle forks myself.

Unless you heavily modify it, in which case you could have built one from scratch, you will be limited to very narrow tires. Most of them are also way too long to be used as an ultralight nose gear anyway.

I have a couple of pencil sketches around here of nose gear that uses bolted and riveted aluminum extrusions and tubing. Maybe I will try to locate them and scan them in.

#### FritzW

##### Well-Known Member
Log Member
The only thing about bicycle forks is how much side load they can carry. You can't put much side load on a bike (you'd fall over) so they're not designed to handle much.

#### cluttonfred

##### Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
Good point, Fritz, and Aerowerks, I'd love to see those sketches.

#### Lucrum

##### Well-Known Member
Log Member
Not to change the subject or your mind. But I decided on a free castoring nose wheel, for simplicity. I have experience with the SR22 which has a free castoring NW, it's not difficult to steer.
Even the P-38 had a free castoring NW.

#### cluttonfred

##### Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
Not to change the subject or your mind. But I decided on a free castoring nose wheel, for simplicity. I have experience with the SR22 which has a free castoring NW, it's not difficult to steer.
Even the P-38 had a free castoring NW.
I hear you, Lucrum, but a free-castering nosewheel means a more complex brake arrangement in the form of toe brakes, heel brakes or dual hand levers. Plus, since I am leaning toward an H-tail for my design, the rudders will not be in the propeller slipstream for taxiing so I think a steerable nosewheel would make sense.

##### Well-Known Member
An extra brake handle and line is like ten times less complex and expensive as adding a steerable nose wheel.

It really starts to add up when you look at the loads and the failure mechanisms of a steered nose wheel.

#### FritzW

##### Well-Known Member
Log Member
I agree, you're already going to have two brakes, it's just a matter of adding another brake pedal or handle. A swiveling NW might be the lightest, simplest and cheapest way to go. But if a positive link NW steering is what you want go for it.

#### cluttonfred

##### Well-Known Member
HBA Supporter
OK, guys, I take your point. How about suggestions for an easy-to-build, bolt-together, free-castering nosewheel without welding?