Friday, November 19, 2010

Bicycles for the 21st century?

I'm intrigued by the wide range of proposals put forward at a recent bicycle design competition held in Seoul, South Korea. Designboom reports that 3078 designers from 88 different countries participated in the contest. Here's the winner of the competition:

The designer says this about it:

Bike 2.0 the next generation bicycle, will give you more fun with energy boosts when you are cruising around. It makes you daily ride more comfortable with energy leveling and the stepless gearbox. You can even add the seat-tube battery and get there faster. Bike 2.0 has a generator and wires instead of a chain, so you will never get oily pants or fingers from the chain again. The two wireless control-units will control any aspect of your ride. You can easily control all this with the two wireless rings on the handlebar.

Many of the entries are weird, whimsical and fanciful. Here are a couple that caught my eye. First, a multi-purpose tricycle:

The designer says:

The "TRI-CYCLE" as the name suggests is a children's equipment [that] provides the user three different configurations [to] allow the toy to adapt to the demands and size of the child. In the first position (01) the equipment takes the form of a tricycle more traditional, but with the ease of having height adjustment to bring the toy to the size of the child. In the second position (02) the "TRI-CYCLE" can function as a short introduction to cycling. For this cut up a rear wheel, replace the axle and the wheel moves to the center of the main body. This setting is also adjustable in height. The third position (03) takes on distinctly different from previous settings. The table rotates 180 degrees and the wheels are put back into positions that allow the "TRI-CYCLE" [to] become a vehicle with performance and with a driving style completely different from conventional.

Next, a beach bicycle with a twist:

The designer describes it as follows:

The Sunn Beam bicycle is for the serious beach bum. The key to the design is the hollow "beam" frame capable of carrying the beach umbrella and folding beach chair. A removable cargo rack allows for additional luggage for essential sunbathing and picnicking supplies.

There are hundreds more cycle designs at the link. Click on any thumbnail picture to be taken to a page with a larger picture and a description. Fun and interesting reading.


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