Monday, December 16, 2013

designboom Top 10 bike designs of 2013

TOP 10 bike designs of 2013dec 13, 2013
TOP 10 bike designs of 2013

bikes have drastically changed the way we navigate and pedal 
our way through cities, facilitating how we get from A to B. we’ve
come a long way since the draisine was invented in the early 19th century,
and 2013 continued to prove what the powerful future of two-wheeled
transportation might look like. from transparent bike frames to electric
velocipedes, designboom brings you a survey of the top 10 bike designs of 2013.

image © nordnord courtesy ding 3000

created in collaboration with BASF, german design studio DING3000 
has developed ‘concept 1865′, an e-velocipede. drawing reference from 
1865  – the year when BASF was founded and when karl drais’ wooden
‘dandy horse’ was introduced to the public – the project sees the
19th century bicycle re-imagined as a modern e-bike using a selection of advanced materials.

image © BSG

created by french designers thierry boltz and claude saos of BSG bikes,
the ‘WOOD.b’ is conceived as a high-quality urban bike, influenced by a
passion for cycling. the concept incorporates the use of a unique frame
system: it draws functional elements from traditional bike parts, but
delivers a refined metal and layered wood veneer package.

image courtesy velonia bikes

the ‘viks‘ urban fixed gear commuter bike is made entirely from stainless 
steel tubes, featuring two identically shaped cylindrical frames  to form its body.
developed by estonian engineer indrek narusk and owner of velonia bicycles,
the design of ‘viks’ draws styling cues from cafe racer-style motorcycles and
classic streamlined aesthetics.

image courtesy designaffairs studio

using new materials and manufacturing techniques, german 
designaffairs studio has envisioned the future of bicycle frame 
engineering and production with ‘the clarity bike’. by using ‘trivex’ –
an alternative to polycarbonate – the advanced polymer combines
high impact resistance with flexible and lightweight technologies
that can be found in traditional italian steel frames.

image courtesy philippe starck

philippe starck in collaboration with french car brand peugeot 
has developed a bike for the city of bordeaux, france’s bike 
sharing program. considered a cross between a bicycle and a scooter,
the design is set to promote and continue encouraging citizens to
chose this mode of transportation within the city, which has seen the
number of cyclists triple in the last 15 years following the
implementation of a initiatives such as limited car traffic and developing the tramway.

image courtesy ┼żarko bubalo

influenced by shipbuilding and aircraft design, serbian designer 
┼żarko bubalo has made two models of wooden bicycles ‘perfect day’ 
and ‘imagine’. the combination of the natural wood with reinforced
glass fiber and epoxy produces a smooth riding experience with a
high-level of vibration absorption.

image © steve gallagher

bike manufacturer specialized have collaborated with formula one 
team mclaren to preview the sequel to ‘venge’, the UCI-legal 
(union cycliste internationale) road bike. requiring a new formula for
light weight, stiffness, and aerodynamics, both teams applied their
extensive knowledge to materials technology, and manufacturing
methods normally reserved for different kinds of racing applications to
create a bicycle with unparalleled speed.

image courtesy bikeID

created exclusively for the museum of modern art’s design store 
in new york city, the ‘svart bike’ is a fully stripped down bicycle f
eaturing an automatic two-speed gear system built directly into the
rear axle, eliminating the need for cables and levers.

image courtesy samuel bernier

designers samuel bernier and andreas bhends have conceived 
‘draisienne’, the chair-cum-bicycle developed using a series of
IKEA hacks with bespoke 3D printed parts and instructions. using
modified components from the frosta stool, a fully functioning bike is born.

image © vanmoof

designed as the world’s first intelligent commuter bike, the 
‘VANMOOF 10′ electrified takes feedback from advances in the car 
industry and combines features such as GPS tracking and smart 
power control. built with an anodized aluminum frame the VANMOOF
10 integrates a lightweight 209Wh battery into a sleek, minimal package,
giving the bike range capabilities of 30km to 60km.

to see more bike designs from 2013, see here.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Truck Replaced! B-Line = Delivery by Electric Trike in Portland, Oregon

Truck Replaced! B-Line = Delivery by Electric Trike in Portland, Oregon [VIDEO]

Post from Paul Willerton, Electric Bike Report correspondent from Bend, Oregon.
It’s a cool, February afternoon in Portland, Oregon. There is intermittent rain falling, the type Oregonians sometimes call ‘dry rain’. On the city’s East side, I’m looking for a company called B-Line PDX.
Not seeing obvious signs on the buildings around me, I call their number. “B-Line PDX, this is Franklin.” Franklin Jones founded the company and is it’s owner and CEO. “Where are you?” he asks. I see a man appear on a loading ramp holding a phone, looking around. From the warehouse behind him, a rider pedaling a trike with a large box attached emerges and glides down the ramp.  ”I’ll be right there”, I say.
From the humble concept of supplying ‘last mile’ deliveries to businesses in a metro area via bicycle transport, Jones has proven his concept works. His business is not only profitable, but it adds value in ways that keep adding up.
First of all, Portland is a cooler city by having electric-assist bicycle delivery. Residents not only seem to take some pride in it, they are also shown what is possible with an electric-assist bicycle. Many may be compelled to get on bikes, themselves.
Other companies that want to show they support green delivery and a healthy lifestyle are choosing to advertise on B-Line PDX delivery trikes. Those ad placements now account for 40% of B-Line’s revenue. B-Line PDX  is demonstrating that their model not only pencils, it injects life into it’s city.
Portland, Oregon gets to call itself home to a global leader in electric-assist bicycle delivery. The results show there is no doubt that this type of service will grow around the world.
The United States and other developed nations may not have embraced rickshaw bicycles in the way that poorer countries have, but they will want to pay close attention to electric-assist bicycle delivery and transport. With zero emissions, lower operating cost and smaller footprint on already too-tight city streets, they can’t afford not to.
Company Founder, Owner and CEO Franklin Jones poses with a B-Line PDXelectric-assist delivery trike. The boxes are custom and purpose-built for the types of deliveries that B-Line makes on a daily basis. They are insulated to help keep perishables in good condition. Contents stay at more optimal temperatures regardless of season and weather condition.
B-Line keeps mechanics on staff. With payloads consistently reaching 600 pounds, total trike weight is in the 1,000 pound range. Averaging speeds of 11-13 mph over routes that are not always the smoothest, trikes need attention. Mid-drive electric-assist motors on stout platforms make it all possible. B-Line learns quickly what works and what doesn’t.
Batteries lined up at charge stations, ready to be dropped in and sent on their missions. B-Line uses both 12V and Lithium Ion systems in their fleet.
600 pound payloads require heavy duty drivetrains and plenty of support in the undercarriage.
An EcoSpeed mid-drive motor equipped trike. B-Line uses different equipment on it’s trikes, learning much about it’s functionality in the process. Questions about which equipment to source and from where are always being pondered.
While pedicabs have been around for decades, electric-assist and the horizons it opens are raising ideas for new concepts. It is early stage in the delivery and transport business. No doubt there will be a growing number of options in the future.
B-Line messenger routes are organized in this fashion. There are usually many routes within routes in a two mile radius. If there are questions regarding speed, studies show that traffic in the city actually averages 11-13 mph, which matches the speed of a B-Line trike.
Customers like McMenamins and Whole Foods benefit from B-Line services as well as schools and shelters. Office Depot has learned that B-Line handles their final destination deliveries well. On the day we visited, 2,000 pounds of office supplies found their destination via B-Line trike.
One advantage that B-Line enjoys is that they don’t need to park in a loading zone or loading dock. They can be in-and-out of a delivery before a large truck has stopped and lowered their gate.
B-Line operates out of a warehouse that is equipped with a large walk-in freezer. This is some of the fresh, top-quality organic produce waiting in the facility for  delivery. B-Line’s serves it’s community and part of it’s activity is funded by it’s B-Share program.
An investment of $20 serves 40 meals to the needy. B-Shares can be purchased here.
B-Line has as a stack of billboards that can be slid into place around their trikes. Advertisers like these see the value in aligning their brand image with what B-Line is doing.
With her delivery route completed, a happy B-Line messenger finishes her route. B-Line keeps eight riders on staff, presently. Many of these riders will put in 32-35 hours per week making deliveries. B-Line has more riders that can be added when needed who work on an hourly wage.
They must all complete a four to five week training period before becoming full-fledged B-Line riders. It’s an intensive course where much of the time is spent on the routing process. For B-Line, some of the heaviest costs to bear are insurance and workers compensation.
B-Line is demonstrating in public view what the hybrid-human vehicle can accomplish. They are showing that electric-assist bicycles are a viable alternative that most business can utilize. In this case, their model was made possible in large part by electric-assist. Getting their trikes on the road, gaining customers, working with their city, forging relationships and always learning has made B-Line a first-mover in the industry.
P.S. Don’t forget to join the Electric Bike Report community for updates from the electric bike world, plus ebike riding and maintenance tips!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Big Dog Sculptures at Menello Museum in Orlando

Every time I ride my bike by these dog sculptures---I Smile


Dale Rogers Big Dog With Cat sculpture

Visitors to the Mennello Museum’s Sculpture Garden are already familiar with the “Big Red Dog” by sculptor Dale Rogers. Through spring 2013, “Red Dog” has company with the addition of Dale Rogers’ fresh pack of twenty 8-foot-tall, 10-foot-long dog sculptures made of Corten steel. The collars with nametags on the sculptures indicate those that have been “adopted” to benefit local animal charities. The Sculpture Garden is always open and dogs on leashes are welcome. Credit: Sponsored by The Mennello Museum of American Art and the City of Orlando Public Art Program.