The humble beginnings!
I started out building a center car which is a popular vehicle for transportation in the Philippines.
Just a little background, The means of transportation has such a wide variety here. Centercars, Trikes, (Bradley Tractor) type for farmers. If you're an older American you may recognize that name and know the style. And of course there are the usual kind, compact cars, vans etc. Most of the Philippines transportation powerhouses (engines) are diesel powered.
This little gem was a creation I started because there are no public moving resources like U haul in America. And when you're new here in the Philippines and don't know a lot of people who may own a flatbed truck and not be busy with farming, it's tough to move your personal belongings to a new location. And as you'll see in the pictures below, I made a trailer first before I spiced it up with a roof.
Just a note: Being a rookie here, I didn't know they mostly use road bikes to mate with their center-cars and trikes and so I just converted my road and trail bike to haul things. And by the way, this design is as original as they come because you see, they don't make bike trailers here like this. Only in my imagination could I come up with something they don't have hehehe! This was the beginning of the future center-car.
I have to point out the special trailer hitch frame I rigged up on the motorcycle. It is bolted across the front framing where the motor mount is. I then made a drop of an L iron on each side to connect two pieces of L iron/angle iron to that, that run to the back, but on the way there I have bolted 2 pieces of flat iron under the bikes foot peg mounts on each side to hold up the hitch framing. Then in the back, a cross piece connecting both sides together and then 2 pieces built to be able to rotate both horizontal and vertical so there's no inappropriate stress on the hitch when turning.
In the picture on the right we were loaded and on our way moving from the barangay of Sta. Teresita to a barangay about 11klms away called Alucao which is out in the middle of nowhere on a road that if you traveled all the way to the end of it, you'd be in the mountains. For anyone viewing this from the Philippines, it's the road besides the lonely Flying V gas station on AH26 towards Magapit.
Below was the starting of the build after moving!
I stumbled across these on my computer. Thought I had lost them!
To explain further, as I was building the Center-car, I realized the top had to be lighter.
And there was this phase! This whole building of a Center-car was not only a learning curve, but a learning experience and wait, I found some more!
See Below! Below are pictures of a radical cut job after we moved to Tuguegarao!
I decorated the whole inside in red, maybe to remind me of my sins washed in the blood of the lamb. I even put a red naugahyde seat cover over the black seat cover of the 175 Taiwanese Maton motorcycle inside. My wife made the curtains and I covered the seat cushions with 4 inch Utraex foam and then red naugahyde.
In the above picture if you look close you can see the switches I installed for interior and fog lights on the front of the center-car.
The paint job on this rig was all by brush, enamel paint and I did it. I wanted to send a message and the same thing was on both sides, except on one side, it was in Tagalog and the other side English.
The roof had gone thru a couple of transformations from galvanized steel sheeting (heavy) to cement framing like chicken wire covered in roof insulation with canvas then secured over it and the inside ceiling was covered in white shiny cleanable naugahyde.
The rear view mirrors I had made were retractable like a telescope so I could pull them in closer to the center-car if I needed to.