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Tag Archives: bicycles

Bird Of Prey Bike Gives Riders A Whole New Position


You’re probably already familiar with what riders look like on a recumbent bicycle, lazily leaning back, but if the Bird of Prey bike takes off you’ll soon see them in an entirely new position: semi-prone. In other words, this bicycle has its riders leaning all the way forward, legs stretched out the back, as if flying through the air, with their hips and elbows fully supported through leather pads. A creation of California-based architect John Aldridge, it’s been in the works since 1991 but only now hitting the production line. Aside from looking a little bizarre, the position is said to have its advantages, such as increased agility through a lower center of gravity, an improved aerodynamic profile, and increased power production:

Due to the Bird of Prey’s ergonomic layout, riders are reportedly easily able to turn its big 60-tooth rear chainring (linked to a 36/11 cassette), producing more torque than would be possible than with a smaller ring. They’re also able to spin like crazy when climbing hills, with their legs fully extended.

Like anything new hitting the market, don’t expect it to be cheap: it costs a whopping $8,500.


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PumpTube Uses A Wheels Rolling Motion To Inflate, Stay At The Right Pressure


We like ideas that use clever ingenuity to accomplish something that hasn’t been done before. At least, we think something like the PumpTube hasn’t hit the market, but we could be wrong. It’s a system that uses a special valve and an inner tube to inflate your tire at the exact pressure just by using the rolling motion of your wheel.

Air is drawn in from the atmosphere through a one-way valve, which sits in the valve stem. Instead of going directly into the inner tube, however, the air goes into one end of the tube-like pumping mechanism, which runs along the outside perimeter of the main inner tube. As the tire rolls against the ground, the pumping mechanism is compressed, forcing air into the inner tube. The resulting absence of air in the pumping mechanism creates a vacuum effect, drawing more air in through the valve.

That said, if the inner tube is already at its desired pressure (which can be set on a dial on the valve stem), no additional air is pulled in.

It’s a smart idea, and the better feature is that it can be used with your current tires. It is compatible with third-party 700c and 26-inch tires, and plans are for it to retail for US$30 to $55 per unit. You’ll have to wait for their Kickstarter to launch next year though, once they’ve perfected the design.


[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gizmag ]

Want: Trefecta DRT Electric Bicycle


You’re looking an an electric bicycle that still allows you to power through things using your legs, or letting the electric motor take over when you’ve had enough. It’ll let you cruise at 55kph (34.2mph) for up to 100km (62miles) on a charge, but will go further if you don’t get lazy and pedal a bit; top speed is even higher at 70kph (43.5mph). Better yet, it’ll be juiced back up to 80% in one hour, making it possible to go long distances with a simple lunch break in the middle. Regenerative braking, integrated touchscreen controls, “fly-by-wire” handlebar controls, Tailtronic electronically controlled suspension, carbon fiber wheels, quick release interchangeable battery pack… and the list goes on. Matter of fact, this baller bike is just too cool for school, and we think that if you’ve got $25,000 burning a giant hole in your pocket, it’ll be well spent here. You can’t quite buy it now however, but you can request a pre-order and hope to be given a chance to plunk down the cash when the time comes… which is undetermined, apparently.

[ Product Page ]

This Is A One Million Dollar Bike. Yes, Really

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We suppose you could make a “one-million dollar” anything so long as you cover it in enough gold and precious stones. That’s the approach that The House Of Solid Gold seems to have taken with the 24K Gold Extreme Mountain Bike pictured above. They’re charging a cool million for a hand-crafted bike made from the following materials: 24K gold overlay on the entire frame, 600 Black Diamonds (6.0 carats in total) and 500 Golden Sapphires (4.5 carats in total). Add an alligator skin seat and some “top notch” components and there you go, one million bucks! Each bike is tailored to the customer’s specs, but clearly this is more of a work of art than a functional bike (although we suppose it would still work). There’s only going to be 13 of them made and each one will be laser etched with the artist’s name.

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Concept: Saddle Lock Bike Needs No More Securing

The sad thing about concepts is that they often remain just concepts. We suspect the above Saddle Lock Bike by designers Lee Sang Hwa, Kim Jin Ho and Yeo Min Gu will receive the same fate. On the one had, this is sad, because we think it’s a cool concept: you can lock your rear wheel by simply pivoting the saddle downwards and pressing a button. Then, you’d enter the combination to unlock. It’s smart! On the other hand, there’s somewhat of a glaring problem: what’s to stop anyone from just grabbing the entire bike and taking off to some safe spot for a more leisurely lock-cutting session? It’s not like this is a much-heavier motorcycle, where you can get away with simply immobilizing a wheel… We figure that there might be times when the Saddle Lock Bike will be safe enough, but we can’t think of any.

Still, bottoms up for nice ideas, even if they’re somewhat impractical. Hit the jump for a few more pictures and links.

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Donky Bike Is Made For Ferrying Cargo

When you saunter over to the field of human-powered two-wheeled locomotion, you realize that the options are plentiful. From the efficient speed machines of the road bike, to the spongy spring masters of the mountain bike, and everything in between. The Donky bike falls somewhere along this spectrum, becoming the urban dweller’s best friends. If you’ve eschewed the pleasures of an automobile for the more environmentally friendly bicycle, you’ll still need to ferry some loads form time to time. The Donky bike features a strong beam that bisects the frame and distributes weight evenly. None of that weight is carried on the handlebars like regular baskets, which means you’re free to transport relatively heavy loads without impairing ride dynamics too much. This, along with a tight turning radius, make it an obvious option for anyone wishing to live a greener, more efficient city life. It comes at a price however, as the Donky will set you back a hefty $800.

[ Product Page ] VIA [ Gizmodo ]

HIOD One Cycling Communicator

HIOD One Cycling Communicator (Image courtesy Free2move)
By Andrew Liszewski

Remember the communicators worn by those serving on the USS Enterprise in Star Trek: The Next Generation? Well you can think of the HIOD One as kind of the same thing. Except that instead of being used on a Galaxy-class starship, it’s used by bikers. And instead of being able to communicate to the entire crew, even when off-ship, the HIOD One lets you talk to 5 other riders at a distance of up to 1,300+ feet.

The HIOD One system appears to be composed of three components. A handlebar mounted control unit that features a high-contrast OLED display. A voice unit that is worn on the rider’s arm, and a wireless microphone that attaches to the chin strap of their helmet. They all speak to each other over Bluetooth, allowing you to easily communicate with other riders while still paying attention to the road. And because the system does rely on BT, it’s also able to place and receive calls from your mobile phone, or stream music without you ever having to manually operate it.

Now I realize the whole TNG analogy I made was maybe a little ambitious. So perhaps comparing the HIOD One to a modern equivalent of the CB radio is a bit more accurate. And as for pricing and availability? It looks like the company behind the HIOD One is still looking for distributors and dealers to sell it. So it could be a while before you can get your hands on it.

[ HIOD One ] VIA [ Shiny Shiny ]

Owl 360 Rear View Bicycle Camera

Owl 360 Rear View Bicycle Camera (Images courtesy The Owl 360)
By Andrew Liszewski

Just because I’m a gadget blogger and have an affinity towards all things high-tech, doesn’t necessarily mean I think everything needs to be upgraded. I still happily use a manual toothbrush, the fan in my bedroom still has blades, and I find it hard to believe that a $180 bike-mounted camera system could outperform a simple mirror.

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying this Owl 360 setup doesn’t work as advertised. It consists of a small CMOS camera you mount below your bike seat — pointing backwards of course — which feeds a live video signal to a 3.5-inch LCD display mounted to your handlebars. A 3.7V lithium polymer battery provides about 5 hours of use on a single charge (probably less when it’s cold outside) and also powers a ring of ten LEDs around the camera lens, making the rider more visible at night. Since the LCD display would probably be stolen faster than it takes for you to lock your bike up, it easily detaches from the handlebar via a hotshoe mount, allowing you to leave the cabling in place.

But, again, while certainly ‘high-tech’, I can’t see how this would outperform a simple rear-view mirror, which doesn’t need to be charged I might add. Perhaps if the camera had a generous wide-angle lens so you could take in everything behind you it would be worthy of consideration, but that certainly doesn’t seem to be the case here.

[ Owl 360 Bike Camera ] VIA [ Gizmag ]

PowerWheel Bike Wheel Ironically Designed To Make Your Ride Slower

PowerWheel Bike Wheel (Images courtesy SlowWheel)
By Andrew Liszewski

With a device called a PowerWheel attached to my bike I’d expect to be easily pedalling my way up steep mountain courses, or even towing cars out of ditches. But instead of making your ride easy, the PowerWheel is designed to do just the opposite. It’s a complete wheel designed to replace the standard one on your bike while you train. And thanks to a specially engineered hub, pedalling, even at slower speeds on a level road, becomes far more strenuous.

As to how strenuous is up to you, since the PowerWheel can be adjusted between 7 different levels of resistance, or completely disengaged when you’ve had enough. It’s even clever enough to automatically disengage when you’re riding slower than 6mph so the bike is easier to handle at slower speeds. And the same happens above 30mph, to prevent the resistance mechanism from overheating. Pricing and availability are still TBA, though, a simpler version known as the SlowWheel will also be available. While it only has 3 resistance settings, it’s also designed to be more affordable for those not training for the next Ironman race.

[ PowerWheel ] VIA [ Gizmag ]