RANS HammerTruck

RANS, builder of recumbents, crank forwards, tandems, and trikes, can now add cargo bikes to their list of innovative products. Their new HammerTruck is based upon a modified crank forward layout with a wheelbase of over 58″ and an integrated aluminum rack system, reminiscent of the Xtracycle FreeRadical and Surly Big Dummy.

From RANS:

The HammerTruck is a cargo hauler designed from the ground up incorporating our Crankforward design. As a Crankforward, it is an ideal package, since the lower seat and top tube height allows for easier mounting, controlling the bike at stop signs, and handling when loaded. At InterBike many cyclist instantly recognized the merits of using Crankforward design for a heavy hauler and took the “HammerTruck Challenge”. The bike was loaded 10 one-gallon water jugs, for an 80-pound load. Everyone was able to ride the bike back up the steep hill, and returned with positive comments about the smooth handling, great power transfer, plus the climb ability of the Crankforward position. We never told them there was any issue with standing and riding, and I observed many first time riders of CF taking to it naturally, the B-37 handlebars and curved riser placed forward make for a very inviting space to get off the seat and hammer it.

Based on the Dynamik the 4130 steel cro-moly frame is TIG welded and powder coated in a stunning silver and charcoal finish, all at our Hays Kansas plant. The custom frame features hard points to attach its made to order rack system. The rack consists of 1” and 1.125 aircraft aluminum tube, assembled using special fittings. The frame hard points are welded with tapped inserts, so removing the rack is a matter of 8 bolts and about 3 minutes. By itself the bike is a fun ride, even considering it’s wheelbase of 58.625”. All of our CF’s are longer than typical bikes, but the HammerTruck is another 9.125 inches over the Dynamik. The length makes the bike well suited to transport the loads, offering space to attach the large rack and bags. Being longer also means the design has to be stiffer in torsion. This is accomplished by adding a series of smaller tubes within the rear triangle. At 29.5 pounds, the bike is fairly light, and a very spirited ride, adding the tube rack, runners, sling bags, and runner covers bring it up to 42.5, still light compared to other long haulers. This is good, because a light strong, hauler can offer more net payload and better performance.

More about the HammerTruck

9 Responses to “RANS HammerTruck”

  • Roland Smith says:

    Is might be just me, but IMHO the rack looks like an afterthought bolt-on.
    All the load on this rack has to be carried by the back wheel, but the direct load path from the top of the rack to the back wheel is formed by the thinnest tubes in the whole assembly. It just doesn’t look right to me.

  • Marlin Ledin says:

    Is that a P-Clamp holding the rack to the dropouts?

  • andy parmentier says:

    i agree that the rack could use work..nevertheless this bike is so A+ and tinkerers shall come forward with rack improvements

  • Jim Barker says:

    This is a great idea from a leader in recumbent bicycle manufacturing. However, lightfoot bicycles has been making cycle cargo machines of a wide variety for a long time. We own a recumbent tandem from them that I truly love. Buy from an expert: http://www.lightfootcycles.com .
    jim b

  • randy schlitter says:

    The rack is very tough, and was part of the frame design from the onset. It uses our aircraft tubing connectors, and 1″ and 1.125″ aircraft alum. tubing, for a light strong rack. We have tested it well beyond what it is rated to handle. The rack is a separate asemblly, but hard points on the frame allow us to attach it secure. The bike also knocks down smaller for shipping since the rack is removable.

  • andy parmentier says:

    thanks randy,
    i’m a huge fan of this bike
    my beef about this rack is probably more aesthetic than structural. after writing my earlier email, i wondered what i had done, and what you had done in this rack. would’nt a “lugged” rack preserve the advantage of lightweight alum. tubing, i wondered. and that’s pretty much what you’ve done with the tubing connectors.
    now you’re wondering? maybe? what’s my aesthetic beef? i would rather have a beefy rack WITH an aesthetic beef attached, since those things tend to fade.
    i’m coming from a background of spending time with an ex-marine who wanted to weld his own rack onto his GT mtn. frame, and admiring SURLY racks.
    i’m also a sucker for uberlight stuff, but the truth lies somewhere in the middle, sturdy but light.
    i like the kona? integrated frame/rack
    i like that curvy aesthetic-that’s why i love the CITI that you make~


  • andy parmentier says:

    “what had i done” had i just hopped on the bandwagon of the other 2 posts before me? no, i had seen the hammertruck for the first time, and i got REAL excited. i had no flags raised about the rack, i just probably thought i had seen cooler ones. but i have never seen a cooler bike, and the rack is growing on me.

  • andy parmentier says:

    i think you have succeeded in building a beefy rack, but maybe more bison than beef-very lean

  • randy schlitter says:

    No sweat, once you see the final production version, and in person, it should be somewhere between bison and beef.

© 2011 EcoVelo™