DailyDirt: Zipping Around On Fewer Wheels

from the urls-we-dig-up dept

Personal transportation is getting better and more convenient all the time -- just check out a bit of the history of the bicycle (or velocipedes). An early velocipede was even nicknamed the "boneshaker" for its uncomfortable ride. Here are just a few advances in the field of personal vehicles that look slightly more pleasant to ride. If you'd like to read more awesome and interesting stuff, check out this unrelated (but not entirely random!) Techdirt post.


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  1.  
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    feda (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 5:13pm

    Bicycles are killing the car industry.

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 5:17pm

    chainless ebike too

    since you mentioned electric bikes, this is a chainless ebike:
    http://www.engadget.com/2011/03/20/gates-bosch-and-nuvinci-combine-to-make-pedal-assist-e-bi ke-co/

    electric mopeds are the future!!!!

     

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    Rekrul, Jun 28th, 2012 @ 8:17pm

    I like how the first article mentions the bike's "Aggressive posture", which is code for "instant backache".

    For decades, doctors have been telling people to sit up straight, don't slouch. Then you get on a bicycle and what are you expected to do? Bend way over to grab the low handlebars, which also forces you to look up, causing your neck to get sore.

    Sure, it might be an efficient posture for racing cyclists, but it's not required for a trip to the store or riding around town.

    I especially hate those bikes with the curved under handlebars, whose only purpose seems to be to make you bend over even farther.

     

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    Leigh Beadon (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 8:23pm

    Re:

    Ah, but also: riding through busy city traffic. Slim road bikes with bullhorn handlebars are /awesome/ for that - you are nice and narrow and in control, and not constantly worrying about smacking into wing mirrors.

     

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  5.  
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    JoeCool (profile), Jun 28th, 2012 @ 10:12pm

    Puzzling

    Why don't bikes use a drive shaft? Seems it would cause fewer problems to the rider, and it should certainly be more reliable mechanically speaking.

     

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  6.  
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    Michael Ho (profile), Jun 29th, 2012 @ 12:05am

    Re: Puzzling

    JoeCool.. there ARE bikes with drive shafts, but I think they're generally not retrofit equipment and require a special bike frame to go with the drive shaft.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaft-driven_bicycle

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 29th, 2012 @ 4:32am

    Now if only they could devise a handcycle that was under $500...

     

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    Son of a Shaft, Jun 29th, 2012 @ 5:08am

    Re: Puzzling

    There are shaft driven bikes. But drive shafts are less efficient than chain/belt drive. Not as noticable on cars and motorcycles. But when you have to fysically power it yourself you're gonna notice it. Even on something as relatively light as a bicycle.
    Using a chain and a full chaincase is the most common setup in countries with high bike usage. Chains are easier to replace/repair than belts and a full chaincase makes for very low maintenance on the drive system. You can't use a derailleur system on full chaincases but in-hub gearing systems are more reliable and shock/impact proof anyway.

     

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    Rekrul, Jun 29th, 2012 @ 11:33am

    Re: Re:

    Slim road bikes with bullhorn handlebars are /awesome/ for that - you are nice and narrow and in control, and not constantly worrying about smacking into wing mirrors.

    For someone, like me, who isn't the best rider, those bikes suck. The bent over posture makes it harder for me to balance the bike and the narrow handlebars make it harder for me to properly control the steering. By having your hands closer to the frame, there's less 'throw' in the steering, so smaller movements make larger changes in direction. Great for someone experienced, not good at all for someone who has trouble enough just trying to keep a bike going straight.

    As for smacking into mirrors, that's only an issue when there's traffic on the road. If I rode a bike while there was traffic on the road, I probably wouldn't be here to write this. One accidental swerve and I'd be under a car. Or cause a pileup and be in jail. I only ride on back roads or late at night when there's no traffic. Kind of negates half the reason to own a bike though...

    And what does bending over have to do with how wide/narrow you are?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 30th, 2012 @ 3:53am

    Re: Re: Re:

     

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