armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)


I have my electric bike battery charging now (Eddie emailed yesterday to say they were in the shop). There's still some more work putting the kit together to do, but should be sorted this weekend.

Also, how instabilities in dense traffic tip into "causeless" jams: http://technology.newscientist.com/article/dn13402-shockwave-traffic-jam-recreated-for-first-time.html
(via)
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)

Jamie emailed yesterday evening to say the courier company had left all his batteries in Taiwan, but I went and collected the rest of the bits (including the actual hub motor, not in the photo). Assembly instructions are a wiring diagram and a Quicktime video that claims it can be put together in ten minutes, which is optimistic even assuming that you are fitting to a new bike with e.g. existing brakes or handlebar grips to take off first, but I should get it done over the Christmas holiday.

EDIT: I'm reliably informed that I won't be doing anything to any bike until after the remaining bedrooms have central heating.
armb: (cycling)
Just spoke to Jamie, and the kits should be in on Thursday.
It's still possible this will all turn out to be an expensive mistake (see uk.rec.cycling passim for doommongers), but in principle having roughly double the power for a less than 5% increase in weight should make cycling easier - enough so that I actually do the full commute more often, ending up doing as much work cycling but using the car less.
Not renewing the car insurance (due 2nd January) might be over-optimistic though.
armb: (cycling)
20+mph head winds cycling in this morning. I mentioned that I was thinking of getting an electric assist motor a while back when the winds were similar. Last week I did actually do something about it, and pre-ordered a kit Read more... )

They also had a Vectrix maxi-scooter, which looks very nice, but is £7000 (and needs to be insured and MOTed, even if electric vehicles are zero VED). And apparently getting one registered was quite hard, though the DVLA might cope more easily as they get used to it.
Some reviews:
http://gizmag.com/go/8036/
http://www.independent.co.uk/living/motoring/features/article1999254.ece
http://driving.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/driving/features/article1744354.ece

Headwind

Mar. 6th, 2007 08:34 am
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
I cycled in yesterday. Had I looked at the wind map showing a 23mph headwind before setting off, I might not have. That "faired recumbent with electric assist" idea is looking attractive. But expensive, and I have a car....
(Power needed to overcome air resistance is proportional to airspeed^2 * groundspeed.)
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
First of all: Astronomers of Rock.

I still have this theory that while I don't need an electric motor to be able to cycle all the way from home, and on a good day I go fast enough that one couldn't be legally useful, I might do it more often with an assist (and possibly get fit enough then to not need the assist).
I had a look at Cambridge Bike Hire's kit today.
Plus points: it's relatively cheap, compared to, say a Heinzmann, and the Li-ion battery is relatively lightweight.
It's available, whereas would-be Bionx distributers http://www.no-hills.com still say "Coming soon" (and I've just found http://www.powerscoots.co.uk/acatalog/Bionx.html, but that says price TBA).
Airnimal are based in Cambridge, and have now a Bionx on a Joey, so I might look into that (it's also more expensive though).
Minus points: relatively unsophisticated controls compared with the Bionx's proportional assist (sensing chain torque).
The "Jamie's still working on the wiring because they came without instructions" thing.

(They also had a Sakura Mustang, which was fun looking but impractical, and my legs are far too long for it.)
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
I was very tempted by this on eBay, but resisted (and would have lost at the last minute anyway).
(The bike itself wouldn't fit me, but is better quality than the spare one that Alice would have to use if Nana Pam wanted to use hers again, and the motor could move.)
armb: Dog jumping in water (Default)
After lunch cycled to the Golden Boar at Freckenham for a drink with friends before they came back for Sunday dinner, with the boys on the U+2. Bright sunshine, though cold, when we left, but started hailing seconds later. Strong headwind across the fields beyween the villages. Vaguely wished I had a faired recumbent (maybe even with electric assist to help with towing), but it would cost more than my car (and wouldn't replace it). In theory I could commute by bike, and we could get rid of the second small car and Alice could use the big car, but I doubt it will happen. The boys were happy with the idea of going to school by bike again (we did it a few times last term, but haven't last half term).

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