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Monday, May 11, 2015

What If You Didn't Need A Bike Lock, Because The Bike Rack Locked Your Bike For You?

Cyclists don't want to lug around locks heavy enough to truly protect their bikes. That's why this bike rack includes the lock, so all you need is a key.
After his bike was stolen, product design student Mason Holden started combing Amazon for a better lock. The problem: It didn't exist. Even the best lock on the market was easily breakable with a few simple tools. So Holden teamed up with fellow Glasgow School of Art student Daniel Harking to design an alternative.
The heavier a bike lock, the better it works. But since cyclists don't want to lug around a giant lock—one highly rated lock weighs 11 pounds, and it still can't stand up to a hacksaw—the designers took another approach. What if the cyclists didn't bring a lock at all?
"The way we saw the problem was that there's a limit to the weight cyclists are willing to carry, and that's the limit of bicycle security," says Harking. "If you look at something like a house or car, the lock is fixed in place, you take the key with you. You don't see someone going around locking their car with a padlock. So we began to look at the option if what if the lock wasn't with the cyclist, but rather fixed in place."
In the new design, called the BikeVault, the lock is built into the bike rack. With the swipe of a card, the rack activates and slides a giant bar through your bike frame and back wheel. Until you come back and swipe again, the bike isn't going anywhere. It's like a sturdier version of the Publock, another student bike rack design that also uses a card to activate.
The rack was designed to look better than the typical industrial steel loops. "If you look at existing bike racks, they're not really street furniture, just big ugly things," says Harking. "We worked with architects who told us whenever they're planning a public space, they always plan for the bike racks to be out of sight. We were acutely aware of the fact that if you make the rack more visually appealing, planners would be more likely to put it in more prominent areas."
That has an important advantage: The more public the space, the less likely a thief is to try to take off other removable parts like a light, saddle, or a quick-release front wheel. "Obviously thieves don't like an audience," Harking says. "By making the structure more appealing, it adds this social element of protection."
Though the rack is significantly more expensive to make than the standard alternative, it's designed to be free to use and free for cities to install and maintain. Funding would come from LCD advertising at each end of the rack...
Keep reading at FastCompany

VIA FERRATA from Summitride

VIA FERRATA from Summitride on Vimeo.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Try A Two-Wheeled Multi-Day Adventure @womensadventure

Pack It On

Combine the freedom of backpacking with the increased mobility and speed of cycling and you get the fast-growing sport of bike packing. At its core, bike packing is exploring and camping from your bike. The variety of trips, terrain, and gear options make bike packing accessible to any level of cyclist. Travel on pavement, a bike path, fire roads, or singletrack. Haul gear with a trailer, panniers, frame bags, or bungees over your rear rack. Go on a leisurely overnighter or a week-long race. Whatever flavor of bike packing you fancy, the following skills will help you squeeze more enjoyment out of your journey.
bike packing 1
(Photo by Jereme Rauckman)

Route Planning

Bike packing routes range from steep singletrack to wide open fire roads and stretches of pavement. Knowing your route helps you figure out any adjustments you’ll need to make to your bike and plan what gear to bring. Follow these tips to chart a solid trip.
Be flexible. Weather changes, bikes break, legs turn to lead. Plan several camps along your intended route so you don’t feel pressured to push on to your final destination if something happens.
Keep distances conservative until you have a better idea what mileage you can cover on different types of terrain. Riding 10 to 15 miles a day is a good place to start. If you get into camp early, dump your gear and explore with a lightened load.
Remember, no bikes are permitted in designated wilderness areas. If an area is slated to become wilderness, it might get closed to biking early—get in touch with the local management district to find out.

16-Year-Old Hacks A $5 Cell Phone Charger For His Bike

Thomas, a 16-year-old has created instructions on Instructables for a DIY wind turbine that is attached to his bicycle. Charge your phone with the wind! It's made from some scrap parts, and some inexpensive electronic parts he has purchased.

Picture of Bicycle Cell Phone Charger (Wind Turbine with build in Battery)
Charge your phone with the wind!
In his words, "I go very often to cycle in the nature where is no electricity, and during a long bike tour my phone usually discharges. These smartphones have a large capacity but its consumption is big too. I made a few weeks ago another bike turbine for the Bicycle Contest, but I think I can make a better one. So created an all in one wind turbine power bank"

The turbine shown mounted

• an old CPU fan
• toroidal inductor
• 2N2222 or 2N3904 or BC547 transistor
• 5v step-up module, (boought on eBay)
• germanioum diodes (5 pieces)
• a small perfboard
• an old phone battery or a 18650 cell
• and a small switch
• bike support element
The simple assortment of parts needed

• Soldering Iron
• Glue Gun
• Wire Stripper and Cutter

• Electrical Tape
The tools Thomas used to build it

The scrap PC fan he used for the turbine

The finished product
Go here to see the Instructable:

Mountain Bikes and Bothy Nights

Mountain Bikes and Bothy Nights from Alastair Humphreys on Vimeo.