An introduction and explanation


Approximately eight years ago the following website was created about a family’s adventure into designing and building a homemade ATV four wheeler. They were even nice enough to post pics of their hand drawn plans. I enjoyed that site and referred to it over and over. Then things changed in my life. Apparently things also changed in the life of the Homemade ATV. Many years later, I went to see how the site was doing only to find the site gone. I spent some time looking over the internet for an alternate site. I thought surely someone would have kept it alive. I emailed the Homemade ATV builders only to get bounced emails. So here I will post a pdf of their website and the plans on good faith that I mean no disrespect or harm and seek no monetary reward. I hope I am not overstepping my limits, but a site such as this should live forever. All that hard work with successful reward is an inspiration to me and many others.

Thank You Jim


Welcome to the Homemade ATV page of Jeff, Alex, and Sam.
Our goal was to build a home-built all terrain vehicle just like this one: Maiden Voyage, July 4, 2002 - Here's the Quad we built:

The above is a picture we stole from the web site of the guys who built and designed it

This was a three generation project. (Grandpa) Sam was our engineering expert; using the pictures from their web site, he drew up full scale plans and instructions for Alex and Jeff to use. Alex and Jeff learned oxy-acetylene welding, and are the production team. Do-ityourself ATV production began in September, 2001.

Pictures of the ATV in Action
supplies/startup page

Section 1: Center Frame Section 2: Forward Frame Section 3: Seat/Stearing/Upper Frame Section 4: A-arms Section 5: Rear Trunion Section 6: Assembly and small parts How much did it cost? and parts list Instructions, Plans, and PDF BLUEPRINTS; (updated 6/6/02)

Beginning production and pictures Building experience Welding

FAQ Info sent to us by others (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:37:46 AM


Disclaimer: ATV's are DANGEROUS!!!!! You could get injured or killed riding them or building them. Your hair could get wrapped around the axle and rip your head off!! Don't build or ride one of these. You will burn your hand when you touch the hot metal! You may notice that we are intentionally hiding our identity behind this free web site - that's so your nearest living relative can't sue us after you kill yourself on an ATV. We have no idea if this design is safe, it probably isn't. Welding is not safe. Neither are saws and grinders and drills. Go buy a commercially made ATV, they are safer and cheaper.
Questions? Comments?

Last updated 7/23/03 (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:37:46 AM

We ended up burning out a gear .geocities.we probably should have bought 1 good saw instead of 2 cheap Supplies: We needed a lot of clamps This $50 chop saw was great.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:38:44 AM . A cheap drill press and vise were also handy We also bought this smaller chop saw. The home depot blades lasted a lot longer than cheaper We also used the angle grinder a lot http://www.

supplies We started off using tiny welding cylinders.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:38:44 AM . Note the adapter on the Acetylene regulator.geocities. It ended up being cheaper to rent the larger cylinders. but we kept having to get them even though we did get some metal warping. Back to HOME http://www. We stuck with gas welding over arc.

geocities. so we tack welded and then removed from the fixture. Note the Heim joint which is used in the upper A arm. You can see where we added additional support under the seat.Start The first thing we did was a little practice welding on 1 x 1 square tube. The wood tended to catch fire. This is a fixture Sam designed so we could weld precise A arms. The flat plate in the picture is used as a spacer only and not welded. Here's the first part we made: Here's the main frame assembly. as is the middle 7" piece of (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:39:46 AM . and kept water http://www.


on hand. We also learned to weld outside only - the garage quickly filled with smoke.

Back to HOME (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:39:46 AM


We started with the center frame section

This was a good place to start because the welding was pretty simple - we had warping problems, and we later found out that one of the frame frame supports was in the way of an engine mounting bolt. We ended up welding a second support on, and then cutting out the first one: The Original: With Two supports

corrected version (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:41:07 AM


Back to HOME (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:41:07 AM

forwardframe The second section was the forward frame. It took a while to make and weld all the little tabs We inserted the rod prior to welding to ensure everything was lined up Using the fixture for exact spacing: http://www.geocities.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:42:06 AM .com/homemadeatv/forwardframe. (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:42:06 AM .forwardframe Finished and attached Back to HOME http://www.

com/homemadeatv/upperframe.geocities.upperframe We used another fixture to support the seat for welding: http://www.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:42:59 AM .

geocities.upperframe Back to HOME (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:42:59 AM .

We had to rebuild the fixture each time due to fire damage from welding. We used 1/2" PVC as inserts/bushings. The PVC fit inside the 1" Here's a picture of how it worked: Here's the fixture Sam designed for welding the A-arms. One is done.A_arms The front A-arms were tough. note the 1/8 and 3/16 plate spacers underneath to hold everything at the correct height. Sam cut a slice out of the PVC with a hacksaw. ready to weld: http://www. with one taped and ready for welding the shock mount tabs: Here are the spindle brackets. the wood block on top is screwed in to hold everything in place: Here are the completed A-arms.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:44:11 AM . Solid bar stock inside the 1" tubing holds everything in alignment during welding. which attach to the end of the A-arms. one is clamped with spacers. In order to make them fit snug around the 5/8 bolt.geocities. Back to HOME http://www..geocities.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:44:11 AM ...A_arms And finally..

Luckily. we should have clamped some 1x1 to them to keep them straight. we found that the trunion just barely fit our 36" axel . I would screw them onto a 2x4 cut to the correct length.reartrunion. a grinder solves all clearance problems: http://www.if we did it again.geocities. We tried to avoid warping problems by spot welding it together (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:45:24 AM . the bearings have a lot of forgiveness built in. so we used a little duct tape to help hold it together for welding We had problems getting the 1 inch holes drilled straight.we only had 1/8" clearance from the end to the rim of the tire . We had trouble clamping it in place. Ours also warped during The trunion used heavy duty 1 x 2 steel. it took 5 tries to get it right We welded in place using a 3/4" bar for a fixture: The bearing mounts were difficult to properly align . and we got the whole thing lined up pretty well: When we did the final assembly.of course. to hold them straight during welding.

com/homemadeatv/reartrunion.geocities.reartrunion.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:45:24 AM .page Back to HOME http://www. Doing all the little stuff took a long time. Here are links to other parts we made: Rear Shock Mount Steering Motor mount Light Mounts Control Panel Front Bumper Battery Box Seat Torque Converter modification Chainguard brake throttle Electrical connection Paint http://www.html2/11/2006 10:45:46 AM .com/homemadeatv/assembly. mostly because there was a lot to do.

We were glad to finally be done welding tabs. The Trunion has been attached to the main frame by 1/4 inch U brackets: With the shock mounts finished. the trunion is pretty much done: http://www.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:46:20 AM .page Here's the upper rear shock mount.rearshock. You can also see we've welded tabs for the lower shock ready to weld.geocities. (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:46:20 AM Back to HOME http://www. The steering arm was made with 3/4 inch rod welded to 1/4 plate. In the first picture you can see the components for the lower control arm prior to welding: Here's the lower arm after welding to the lock collars.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:47:01 AM . There was too much force on the allen screws. and the did not we ended up welding the whole piece to the steering rod: http://www. Our plan to use the removable lock collars did not work.

page We bought some commercially made clamps and handlebars: Back to HOME (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:47:01 AM .

http://www. and then used a cutting torch to finish off the We used a cutting torch on some 1/4 plate to make the motor mount: We needed to make slots for the engine mounting bolts.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:47:46 AM .geocities. because this is how you adjust the chain tension.motormount. We clamped surplus steel into place as guides. To make the slots. we first drilled holes at the ends.

html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:47:46 AM .page Here's the engine mounting plate welded into place . You can also see the expanded metal we welded on for footpads. the heat lines from the underside welding that displaced the rust.

html2/11/2006 10:48:14 AM . and also handy on night rides. in part so we could install lights We made a quick light mount using 1/8" Unlike the original ATV we copied. we decided to go with an electric start engine. and welded across the front.good for saftey during the day. The tailight was just screwed into the bottom of the seat using an ordinary L bracket and wood screws: http://www.

We used 1/16" sheet steel (same as the battery box) drilled holes for our switches. and and welded it on: http://www.geocities.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:48:38 AM We also needed to add a control panel for our electric start engine.

page Back to HOME http://www.controlpanel.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:48:38 AM .com/homemadeatv/controlpanel.geocities.

but because this was a non-structural piece. which hold the A-arms. We used leftover scrap pieces for all of the parts. It also provides a small carry space in the front.bumper. we took a shortcut and used only Sam's plans called for five mounting points on each side . and we were in a hurry to finish.geocities.note the protection provided to the lower tabs: http://www. and the tubing bender to make the bends: We started by Welding the bottom support rods: Then clamped in place for welding: After welding to bottom supports: The front supports and cross bream clamped for welding: The final bumper .html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:49:32 AM .page The front bumper was designed primarily to protect the welded tabs on the underside of the front frame.

com/homemadeatv/bumper.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:49:32 AM http://www.geocities.

you can see the holes for the solenoid on the near side. If you look close.html2/11/2006 10:50:07 AM .geocities. We also welded on a "U" shaped bungee cord retainer: Here is a picture of the battery box welded into position. You can also see both bungee cord and the ground screw hole on the far side. bottom. and back sides were made out of one piece and bent on the bench vise.batterybox. The two sides were then welded on. behind the forward frame and in front of the engine mount plate. The We built the battery box out of 1/16" sheet steel. one on the box and one on the inside piece of the forward frame: http://www. with a hole in the bottom for drainage.

staple (with a staplegun): http://www. and a 1" layer of softer We bought some black vinly at a fabric store: Because of the bend . and then screwed together with wood screws .the Tnuts must be placed prior to doing the seat cover: Cut the and staple. and secured the seat with 1/4" bolts . cut the fabric.we reinforced the joint with epoxy: We used T-nuts mounted on holes drilled in the plywood. a 2" layer of high density foam. clamped in We made the ATV seat out of 3/4" plywood.geocities.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:51:00 AM . staple. we cut the wood in two pieces. (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:51:00 AM .

We accomplished this by using a 72 inch rear sprocket (see below for additional problems and why you can skip this entire procedure). and drilled the slots and new hole . lining up the original holes. but we didn't have the clearance under the seat. We then measured and rotated the template so point B was one inch higher. http://www. We then put the template on the mount plate. with clearance on both sides of the trunion. this raised the sprocket up 1" The rest of the torque converter was then mounted: This shows the rear end setup. with the chain fitted on the sprocket in the torque converter. we realized we had a chain clearance problem .When mounted. we cut out the three mounting holes (our engine only has three) 2.we also marked another mounting hole found on our engine: 3. so we would have lots of torque and not so much speed. With the template level and taped in position. We haven't cut the chain yet so its too long.So Sam got out his slide rule and made some calculations. and cut out the new holes (making slots) . So we decided to rotate the torque converter and raise the back edge (with the chain sprocket) one inch. To do this we had to drill additional holes in the Converter mount .geocities. Here's what we did: 1.The chain would be too low to clear the trunion properly when the trunion flexed in certain positions .com/homemadeatv/torque.Sam designed a template for us with instructions. By the time we had the frame built and the engine and torque converter purchased.torque.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:52:33 AM . The easy solution would be to raise the whole engine up an We initially decided to gear the ATV very low.

we strongly reccommend going with the 60 tooth sprocket and skipping this entire process of messing with the torque converter.torque. we need to move the torque converter back to its original position. and then weld on a sprocket guard.not good. until we put together our 72 tooth sprocket with our 18 inch tires (also purchased for high torque/low speed).com/homemadeatv/torque. Of This all worked out fine. http://www. We then discovered we had less than 3 inches of ground clearance under the sprocket .geocities. So.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:52:33 AM . with a 60 tooth sprocket. We'll probably go with the 60 tooth sprocket. Solution is a 60 tooth sprocket (also much cheaper) and/or 20 inch tires.

or body parts get caught in the We think adding a chain guard is important. We used sheet metal to make the chainguard. We used extra metal tubing between the clamps and the sheetmetal to keep it uniform: We made L brackets out of 1/8" metal. we just rolled it over the 2x4. and then clamped again. we improvised using a 2x4 and clamps: Once we had the metal clamped on one side. hair. welded them to the serious injury can result. and drilled holes for the back two and slots for the fronts two: http://www. Since we didn't have a bending brake.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:53:31 AM . If clothes.

which were welded on to the We needed the chainguard to be removable so we can accesses the chain.chainguard.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:53:31 AM so we used bolts. http://www.

The disc brake we purchased came with a bracket to be welded on to the frame: We welded an additional support bar onto the trunion. using a single disc brake rather than dual band We simplified the brake. We also welded our own pedal. both for support and for a protective skid plate: The total assembly: http://www. and the bracket on to the bar: The brake pedal parts: Clamped for welding: A closeup of the spring tab and connection We welded some 3/16 to the bottom of the bracket.geocities.brake.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:54:43 AM . The welded pedal (view of the upside down ATV): http://www.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:54:43 AM .

50 x 8 $68 Torque Converter TAV 30 (used) $120 Wood (for assemby fixtures) $20 Front spindles.geocities. tank rental $314 (this would have been about $50 less if we had rented the large tanks to begin with) welding tip (#3) and adapter for larger tanks $35 pillow blocks $23 (had to buy 4 after we melted the first two) Brake: caliper (Comet DC 1). This is what we've spent so far: $2. welding rods. You can buy a new ATV for less. rear bearings $66 Acetylene and oxygen. think again.326 Raw steel: $175 8hp Briggs and Stratton with electric Start #192407 $415 4130 steel tube for A arms (special order) $55 Rear Tires and rims 18 x 9.) Here's a sample of ATV's for sale. mount and disk $83 lock collars (for steering) $20 Front wheel hubs #13828 $70 Rear hubs #13829 $45 Handlebars and fittings $35 headlight $16 bolts/hardware $69 Tie Rods $34 blueprint copies $20 Heim Joints $30 Axle $31 Shock absorbers $98 misc shop supplies ~$50 seat foam $28 Paint and primer $13 tail light $4 chain $25 rearview mirror $8 Battery $28 seat fabric $6 Brake linkage rod $5 throttle assembly $20 Electrical pushbutton switches $12 Rear axle sprocket 60 tooth $20 Rear axle sprocket 72 tooth $50 Battery $28 Sprocket holder $18 Exhaust pipe $6 Tools we bought: 14" Chop saw $50 Chop blades/grinder blades $62 8" mitre saw $62 Azusa 1004 $56 Front Tires 18 x 6. magnetic welding clamps $50 Set of large drill bits $31 http://www.50 x 8 $110 Front wheels.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:55:10 AM . Here's a source list where we bought most of the Parts list and costs: (If you are building it yourself to save money. Welding masks (2) $60 Welding gloves $21 Tubing bender $80 Second angle grinder $20 (burned out the first) Second Bench Grinder $55 (burned out the first) Tools we used but already had: Small oxy-acetylene welding outfit Small drill press $50 Angle grinder $18 hand drill. grinding stones.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:55:10 AM .cost. wrenches $250 Back to HOME http://www. hammer. drill anvil.geocities.

For the steel.others Here's some info we were sent by E-mail: Hello. I just got done with my ATV I built. The plans are really nice to have. The tires were pretty spendy too! www.00 for both on E-Bay.00). It was 125. The most expensive part was the Honda ATC110 motor and rear axle. garbage cans(painted red of course). and the disclaimer was a really good idea! Got to has awsome prices for atv tires(walmart/sams club too)! The flexable cover over the steering shaft is an old air duct from a 1987 I saw your web site and wanted to share 10:56:15 AM . angle iron.00. the gas tank is from a motorcycle wrecking yard($5.geocities. have fun riding! http://www. I'll let people know about your site. The bad part is. I go to the local steel scrapyard! All the tubing. you have to clean it before welding! The fenders I have are from the top rim of two rubbermaid 45gal. round and square stock only costed me about 15.denniskirk.. Just thought I might want to share the info where some good prices are at! My atv looked real close to yours until I put on the fenders and gas tank.

building We used some simple fixtures to align the tabs for welding. Unfortunatly.: In order to align the (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:56:53 AM . we first mounted the steering shaft to the pillow blocks. this melted the first set of pillow blocks: http://www. We then welded the plates into exact position. then mounted the pillow blocks to the mounting plates.geocities.

building The engine mounting bolt conflicted with the main frame support. we had to add an extra support and then cut out the first one: Back to HOME http://www.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:56:53 AM .com/homemadeatv/building.geocities.

faq. I was wondering if they are able to hold up to the stress of riding or have they ever broken? A: So far. The nice thing about oxy/acetalyne . A: Everything on the web site and plans is in inches Q: Is your frame built from all square tubing or is there some round tubing used as well? It's hard to tell from the We did test our welding technique by cuting and re-welding a piece of 1 x 1 tubing . For the life of me. Have a question?? E-mail us at homemadeatv@yahoo. We also paid a premium to have the exact size 4130 tubing shipped to us.we placed this in the tubing bender . Geocities shuts down the website for an hour when too many hits are received. K.html (1 of 2)2/11/2006 10:57:32 AM .com HOMEMADE ATV FAQ Here are the answers to some questions we've been asked: Q: I was on your website. I was trying to download them but some of them didn't work. most everything else is round tubing Q: I noticed that you have listed a cost of $175 for the steel used in your ATV frame. A: On busy days. You can also download the Blueprint plans in a zip file at http://geocities.we can take our small tanks with us to the field and make any needed repairs. just want to know are dimensions in Inches or what? thanks. Q: I was wondering how strong the welds are on it because they look messy. although we've only been riding it a short time.the 1 x 1 gave and the weld held. I can't see that much money in steel as per your pictures. Where is all the extra steel? Or is it just that steel is expensive in your area? A: Retail steel is more expensive than you think. I have been looking for plans for an ATV. and trunion are all square. For an exact breakdown (more or less) click Q: hi there. We also had a proffessional welder look at our welds and give us the O. Are you still in the process of building or was it just my browser. forward frame. A: The main frame. especially when purchased in small quantities. so good. Wait an hour and try it again.

faq.html (2 of 2)2/11/2006 10:57:32 AM .com/homemadeatv/ http://www.

You can download a free evaluation version of winzip at http://www. The plans and information are totally free. All we ask is that when you finish. go to the main site at Homemadeatv Click here to download the Zip file of all the PDF Blueprint plans. you should be able to download the file direct to your computer. which requires the program winzip to If you just want to take a quick look. you send a picture to: which you can download free at: http://www. For instructions and additional information. The file containing the blueprints is too large to send by e-mail .However.html http://www. which requires adobe acrobat reader.index. It is a "zip" Welcome to the Homemade ATV PLANS download 10:58:16 AM The files themselves are PDF. you can view JPG photos of the plans on our plans page.

html (1 of 2)2/20/2006 2:07:00 PM .pictures Here are some pictures of the Homemade ATV in action:

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