Thursday, April 28, 2011

Models No.2 & No.3

While we digest and compost the lessons from Model No.1 and wait for technology issues to resolve Jeff and I have been busy discussing our next move. The most important decision we have made is to abandon the fork-less steering concept and stick with a conventional front fork & wheel as seen on No.1. The reasons for this are numerous but essentially they come down to aesthetics versus utility and time versus labor. The fork-less wheel is cool and all but adds nothing in terms of functionality. Aesthetically it differs from the rear wheel which will look incongruous (and, no, I won't put a disc wheel on the back) and I am not even sure we could incorporate a brake on the concept as it currently exists. Fork-less front wheel also means no dyno-hub unless we go with a retro bottle dynamo on the tire. Added to that is the mechanical complexity of the concept which will require a lot machining of metal, not our strong suite, and a good lead time to bring it to fruition. We only have five months and we may well blow our wad on this and have nothing left to complete the bike in time. Right now we have a working concept that we know we can repeat and improve upon. Better to finish the project than arrive with a half baked concept that doesn't work. Part of me hates this choice, the cautious nature of it, but I have crashed and burned on too many projects by over-reaching to repeat it with this one.
Instead Jeff & I have decided to build two bikes in parallel. (No.2 & No.3) Each one will share the same basic frame design but will be quite different in the details. This will allow us to experiment with things like cable versus rod steering, internal storage, colors, finishes and hardware. We are excited about the possibilities in customizing each version. I know Jeff really wants a Koala Kote covered deck (rubbery non-slip marine goop) while I favor blue AstroTurf (just kidding) or Pirrelli flooring and I really want to incorporate a sound system that runs from a iPod Nano or something.
Anyway........none of this is going to happen unless I get cracking in Solidworks and model the darn' thing and I can't do that until I get my sodding laptop back from those great, great guys at Happy Hamster.


  1. Jeff and Michael,
    This bike is fantastic. I want one.
    Would you sell me any measurements or notes from your work so far? I'm pretty handy and could make a copy of your work. I've made several kayaks from plans. They usually cost around $90, and these would be worth at least that much to me. Thanks for your consideration.
    John at

  2. John,

    We are considering a kit system of some kind although obviously are focus right now is on completing the final model(s). When the dust settles we will sit down and figure this out. For know just watch this space........

    Michael & Jeff