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Friday, May 22, 2015

The Self Charging Electric Bike

The Self Charging Electric Bike
This is the electric bike that riders help recharge by pedaling. Instead of rotating the rear wheel, pedaling this bike turns the built-in alternator that converts mechanical energy into electrical energy, providing supplemental power to the rechargeable lithium-ion battery. The 2 1/2" color LCD on the handle bars allow riders to easily select pedal resistance, acceleration, and speeds up to 16 MPH. The bike has a chainless hybrid drive system with an automatic dual winding motor, an aluminum frame with a carbon-fiber single fork, 20"-diameter tires, and dual hand brakes. Inside the frame, the electronic control unit’s sensors monitor the bike’s speed and slope of the terrain and automatically shifts gears to enable smooth rides up steep inclines or down declines. The battery enables up to 18-mile rides on a full charge without any pedaling or up to 28-mile rides when aided by pedaling. Recharges in 51/2 hours via included AC adapter. Folds to 1/3 its size for storage. 64" L x 46" H x 24" W. (47 3/4 lbs.)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Better Block project to transform Akron's North Hill: See a map, what's on tap

Better Block North Hill.jpg
A schematic showing what North Hill will look like during the BetterBlock street festival this week. (Team BetterBlock)

AKRON, Ohio -- Head to Akron's North Hill neighborhood this weekend and you might be surprised by the pop-up shops and bike paths erected by Better Block.

Friday-Sunday, May 15-17, the vacant storefronts and barren sidewalks will disappear. Volunteers, with support of the city and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, are transforming North Main Street into a vibrant arts district the immigrant neighborhood has not seen in decades.

The Better Block project, an idea that originated Dallas, Texas, is demonstration imagining a revitalized area, and making that happen.

Small businesses will overtake North Hill weekend, buttressed by new landscaping, reconfigured bike-friendly streets and new plazas. Organizers hope the event will help neighbors and visitors alike to imagine a new future for the neighborhood, and maybe just some of those popups will decide to stay. 

Here's five things you can do in North Hill, only this weekend.

Eat and drink at brand new places: New dining options include a new art gallery espresso cafe, the Stray Dog Diner and a specialty dumpling restaurant. A new plaza will also beckon food trucks from around the region. 

Stroll on shady, tree-lined streets and sit in plazas: Better Block will transform the intersection of North Main Street and East Cuyahoga Falls Avenue into a roundabout, adjoined near a wide plaza that will feature seating and a court for bocce ball, the hand-ball sport enjoyed by Romans and 21st century hipsters alike. 

Volunteers will bring in 30 new trees, four of which will find permanent homes. 

Ride your bike all the way downtown: A simultaneous street fair will turn North Main Street into a bike friendly, pedestrian centric thoroughfare. Main will be closed off to automobiles North of downtown Akron throughout the weekend. 

Another nook will feature a small-goal soccer tournament. 

Experience new, local shopping: Anchored by Neighbors Apparel, a year-old business founded by Tessa Reeves, shops will have a three-day lease on life during better block. 

Neighbors specializes in hand-made garments sewed primarily by Bhutanese refugees who have settled in the North Hill neighborhood, using fabrics that have been imported from southeast Asia. A bike shop will also open its doors.

There will be an open air market featuring local vendors and farmers just off Main Street. 

Just imagine: Jason Roberts, the man who founded Better Block in Dallas three years ago, wants you to see what your neighborhood can be. 

If the pop-up businesses do well enough this weekend, organizers hope owners may muster the courage to set up shop permanently and start a wave of new business that can turn North Hill into a bustling business district. 

"If we create the environment just temporarily we can watch what happens. People were saying lets make this stay lets make this stick," Roberts said. "We call it speed dating for cities."


Sarah Braker, communications manager
Sharing the road has its risks, and something that unites many bicyclists, from novice to experienced, is the fear of being hit by a car. But, what if it isn't just the person on two wheels, but also the one behind the wheel, who is a bike rider? As we learned from our participation study, 88% of people who rode a bike in 2014 also drove a car, so it’s possible, even probable, that drivers involved in bike-car crashes are themselves people who ride bikes. What follows is the story of one such person, a frequent bike commuter who hit another bike rider with her car. Her name has been changed to protect her anonymity, and her story proves when it comes to bike and cars, it’s much more complicated than us versus them.

Image: Flickr

The driver

My friend, we’ll call her Veronica, lives in the Jamaica Plain neighborhood of Boston and identifies as a bike commuter. She usually rides to work, three miles each way, and also uses her bike to run errands. Boston has made great strides over the past few years to become a more bike-friendly city, but Veronica says she still worries about crashes. “Not a single day goes by that I don’t think my life will be ended by a car hitting me,” she says. Driving in Boston is no picnic either, and like many of us, as Veronica started biking more, she became a more careful and vigilant driver. “I definitely am more cognizant of bikers when driving,” she says, “If I’m parked on a street, I will look in my mirror to see if a cyclist is coming and I never honk at people on their bikes.”


Oak Street, San Francisco. Photo: SFMTA. 
Protected bike lanes are now officially star-spangled.
Eight years after New York City created a Netherlands-inspired bikeway on 9th Avenue by putting it on the curb side of a car parking lane, the physically separated designs once perceived as outlandish haven't just become increasingly common from coast to coast — they've been detailed in a new design guide by the Federal Highway Adminstration.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

GRINDURO - A New Kind of Bike Race

[More at]

How to Shop by Bike @momentummag

Photo by Lily Holman
My partner and I picked up the habit of shopping by bike shortly after we first started riding together. On the way home from a ride, we’d stop in at a butcher shop or pick up some take-out for dinner. At first, we’d hang bags from our handlebars, but we knew this was putting our purchases at risk as they swayed and bounced off our front wheels. We soon had the urge to carry more with us – without having to take transit or resort to borrowing a car.

Thousand: Finally, a bike helmet you'd actually want to wear @kickstarter


North Bend Rail Trail Bike Camping 2015 #bikecamping #coffeeoutside @salsacycles

6 cyclists. Saturday ride from Parkersburg to Salem to bike camp and ride back on Sunday. We camped in Salem along the trail. Dinner in town at the shelter.

130+ miles. 6000+ ft climbing total. Rained intermittently.

Multiple mechanicals including shifters, fenders and punctures.

Great weekend with friends on the bike.