Gadgets: Buckshot Pro

thing

Speaker, charger, flashlight that attaches to your bike.

When this Buckshot Pro showed up for a demo, I thought, “now that looks like a bike party….” It’s a portable rugged speaker that has a passive bass port for bigger sound, a 2600mAh powerbank for charging devices, AND a flashlight. So you can ride with the speaker end towards you, charge your phone, and shine some light on the trail (or keg).

thing

Play some music, charge your phone, light the path.

This is the second product we’ve had in from Outdoor Tech and like them both. The Turtle Shell Boombox I spotted a few years ago at Interbike, ended up in the garage, on the workbench and has remarkable sound, considering the form factor. If you don’t want the two extra features from the Buckshot Pro for $79.95 – flashlight/usb charger – the regular Buckshot ships from Amazon with Prime for $49.95.

boom

Attached to your bars.

Make Sparks with Your Bike

What I like about this Wimshurst machine for a bike is how it’d clear the bike path of dogs on leashes, moms with carriages 3 wide, and rollerbladers. Also, impress your friends at the next picnic, zapping bugs!

Wimshurst machine added to a bicycle for making sparks! A Wimshurst machine is an electrostatic machine, which by turning some disks, produces high voltage and sparks. By designing and 3D printing a bike chain sprocket, I caused pedaling the bike to also turn the sprocket and then the disks.


Or hey…as the works starts on Issue 24 of our magazine (yep, 2 years of publishing), this post flowed real easy.

A Surrey on the Swing Bridge

Line

Here we all are stuck and the surrey is in the front

Not everyday you see a pedal surrey stuck on the swing bridge in West Seattle. They’d pedaled miles from Alki and were stuck with us when the bridge had a mechanical. Not knowing when a crew would fix it, as the discussion went on Twitter, we rode around to another draw bridge, and eventually saw the surrey family (the Hidlebrands) on the trail.

They told us, “Yeah the kids were getting hungry and the rental period was running out…so we heave ho’d it OVER the gates.”

asf

Free from the stuck swing bridge, here they are on the bike trail eating ice cream

Amazing and a reminder, when it seems like a tough climb or long road ahead, the Hildebrands pedaled a surrey further than any family before them AND lifted it over draw bridge gates.

When asked, the youngest said, “It was a lot of work, but totally worth the ice cream.” And must’ve been fun descending down the other side of the bridge….

The Unicyclist

If you’ve been following along on Twitter, last month saw an aerobarred, 36-inch unicycle with panniers in the neighborhood. Didn’t get a photo, but tweeted the sighting and the one-wheeled oddity became like bigfoot. Then the character rode by Hugga HQ and I scrambled to get shots with my phone, pointing it out the window, up and then down the street…grainy and in low-rez, followers were replying back, “we need to see the bones,” like Big Foot.

Then on Friday, finally a closer shot.

ballah uicycle

The reveal! Finally a better photo

As I learned, these unicycles are built for adventure and I guess he’s training, cause the terrain here is hilly and that wheel is fixed. Where he’s going to ride that, I don’t know…but packed up I’m guessing it’s across Africa or something.

Trek QR Recall: An Audible Click

qr

Lever in disc rotor causes crash

Since Trek announced their massive quick-release recall, it’s been discussed in back channels and online. As the news broke, Trek told me in email that they pushed hard for the recall

We pushed CPSC on the recall. It was our discovery that we took to them to see if they were aware. They were not and we started working on the voluntary recall at that time. Our stance is that safety is a huge priority for Trek. We investigate every accident reported to us and in our investigation into an accident last year we made this discovery. Went to CPSC and are now taking this action. It’s a big number and it’s not easy to undertake but it’s the right thing to do and the decision to work with the CPSC was easy to make when we realized what the potential of the issue was.

Today, our magazine contributor Patrick Brady wrote on RKP about quick releases and cited a conversation I had with an industry insider about a clickable quick release

Someone needs to invent a skewer that will emit an audible click once the lever is tightened sufficiently. Until it’s properly tightened, no click. It’s a simple message: When you hear the click you’ll know you’re safe.

Sound silly? It isn’t. It’s smart and here’s why…the main problem is a cyclist belief system that the special riding club knows how to make a critical part of a bicycle work and others don’t. The end result is injuries, some serious. When wheels fell out of my bikes last year, it was laughed off, blown off, and seriously said to me, “that’s how it is.” I believe that’s because “racing” drives the marketing so much in the bike industry. So perhaps someone that isn’t hard, suffers, and races sure as shit doesn’t know how to put a skewer on, right?

Idiot skewer user!

Wrong. This is a design problem and it’s designer’s job to protect users and consumers from themselves. Whatever design solves this problem, has to do more than retain the wheel in the fork with either tabs or hooks, as is required by law now.

A clickable quick release sure sounds good to me and honestly, I know very smart people in tech who like to ride a bike once in a while and don’t know how a QR works, like at all. That’s just not something they should have to think too much about; despite the historical context of Tulio’s genius that cold day in the Dolomites.

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