Build Cambodian Style Tuk Tuk?

Discussion in 'Hacks' started by SantaFeTrailer, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. SantaFeTrailer

    SantaFeTrailer Stromtrooper

    Jan 29, 2011
    End of the Trail
    Freshly back from a great trip to Cambodia (and still fully jet lagged). I had been kicking around the idea of a small displacement hack for a while, thinking it might be fun for running the kids over to school, going downtown, other 1 mile/25 mph trips. Now TrailerWife has suggested that I build a Cambodian style tuk tuk instead.

    These are different than the usual three wheel contraptions, in that they are actually trailers pulled by the ubiquitious Honda Dream 110's or Korean Dai Lem equivalents. I checked our MV reg's and don't really see anything on point. I would intentionally keep it low displacement in order to avoid excessive speed. Does anyone have thoughts on 1) legality, 2) construction?, 3) safety? I saw two different types of very home made moto attachment pivots (the "Phnom Penh" style and the "Siem Reap" style), but I think maybe a trailer ball and coupler might be a better way to go.

    Link to pic, but I will host and post later:

    BTW, Cambodia drivers are nuts, and I only saw two accidents in 10 days there (one was a 10 wheeler sideways across the road).
  2. cleatusj

    cleatusj Dirt floor engineer

    Dec 17, 2010
    Granbury, TX
    Texas does not want anyone riding in a trailer. Parades are the one exception.
  3. grisezd

    grisezd Been here awhile

    Dec 22, 2004
    Central Ohio
    I'm sure it could be done and you might even be able to get within "legal" with it, but outside of a very small town or some gated suburbs or similar I think you'd get hassles. That, and it just seems like more risk than I'd want to put my kids into.

    I think there might be laws against passengers in camper trailers in most states, probably broad enough to interpret into this.
  4. brstar

    brstar Long timer

    Aug 17, 2007
    Shoalwater Western Australia

    Rode (drove) this Tuk Tuk across Phnom Phen one night. It belongs to a good friend of mine Butsa. He made the mistake of waving the keys under my nose as we were heading home from a night at another friends house. A great evening and one of the most excellent ways to cruise that I know of.
    Where these are used the country is extremely flat and the traffic travels slowly 30mph tops and usually less.
    Note the water container. It is used to drip water on the engine to keep it cool as the little aircooled motor gets to work hard sometimes. No brakes on the trailer and not much power available (125cc) make for sedate journeys in a very different part of the world. Tropical heat means you never feel the cold but rather appreciate the gentle breeze as you progress through the heavy traffic. Or as is my favorite, cruise along late in the evening when the roads are calmer and the city lights are bright with my lovely wife under my arm.
    Had to take my big footwear of to get the big feet under the controls and the hand signal is one the locals use to ask if you want the services of their tuk tuk or moto (solo bike)
    On any sort of hill the engine is under powered and the brakes would soon be over powered but perfect in the right environment.
    Cheers, Bruce
  5. DavePave

    DavePave Been here awhile

    Aug 2, 2008
    Jacksonville, Flatistan