“Design your dream bicycle” – this was my challenge and I relished the thought. Initially, I was overwhelmed with so many possibilities. Should I get a wooden bicycle? A Penny-farthing like in the days of yore? However, in the end, after taking a good look at what’s out there in cutting edge technology, and what we can learn from historical models, I decided to take it a step further and invent some of my own features to create a totally customized, no-holds-barred, sweet-action ride.
Now, before we begin, keep in mind this ride is not intended for all audiences. I am a commuter and use my bicycle is primarily for utilitarian purposes rather than leisure or exercise. Also note that I am not a machinist or engineer and while I can design and dream all I want about my ideal bicycle I don’t have any of the skills necessary to build it. (Read: Urban hipsters: please do not contact me asking how you can get one of these bicycles. Engineers/Bicycle makers: please DO feel free to actually build a model of this and notify me immediately.)
Alright, what’s the first feature of my dream bicycle? Well, some of you may wish for a diamond encrusted bicycle, but remember I’m all for the practical and obviously would want my name spelled out in the frame of the bicycle, like so:
Secondly, seeing as how headphones are illegal while operating a vehicle (that goes for you too drivers) I would want the ability to play music
on with my bicycle. What better way to make music than have the ability to play records around my wheels?
Speaking of tires, I’m always worried about bicycle safety and not being seen by drivers at night so why not add some snazzy led images to my tires?
On a practical note, I’d like my tires to be self inflating with a built in pump like so:
I would definitely want a pannier or two attached somewhere. Popularmechanics.com describes panniers as “A graduated basket… well worth the expense.”
Living in washington DC has its advantages- lots of free museums, outdoor film festivals in the summer and a fair amount of bicycle lanes to get there on a bicycle. What’s the trouble with that? Bicycle theft. While there has been lots of attempts at designs to quell the would be thieves I think one of the best inventions is to have the lock be part of the bicycle itself (better yet, an essential part). I saw this on a few sites including bicycledesign.net.
Any bicycle worth it’s salt should obviously be foldable – small enough to fit in the space in car trunks designated for a spare car tire. This idea Volkswagen came up with and I’m a big fan. That way you can drive to the countryside and have a leisurely afternoon of biking.
Besides a pannier or two another basket on the front of my bicycle couldn’t hurt- why carry things on your back when you’ve got a perfectly good machine that can hold things?
I would not want my ride to be a strenuous workout like the crazies who ride the ElliptiGo.
Being a social animal I regret that most bicycles are only build to hold one person. Not the case with my bicycle. Mine would have an extra pop out seat and pedals so my friend could join me in a jaunt.
And the final crowning piece of this bicycle? Well, first think of all the musky animals overrunning the streets of any city. I’m talking about squirrels. They’re not doing much of importance, and they’re friendly. Why not put them to work? I’ll devise the inside of my tire so that it’s something like gerbil wheel meets parrot swing. That way my tires can be powered by natural energy and when they get tired of running, they can jump on a tiny hammock and rest while I pedal. It’s brilliant! And think of all (government subsidized) jobs created because people will need to train these squirrels! It’s really a win-win-win.
I’m thinking the final product will look something like this:
While it might not be the most feasible bicycle redesign, I think it’s better than the fake bicycle from Leonardo Da Vinci’s sketchbook and may just be crazy enough to work.