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11.13.2007

Most amazing bike/scooter/robot ever

A few months back while walking home from Mason Gross, Jen and I saw this AMAZING bike contraption. It was sitting in the sidewalk in front of Tumultys with no owner around so I took some quick photos to remember the total beauty of the thing. I definitely have some innate attraction to anything that looks hand made with wires, switches, knobs, and random electronic components hanging out all over the place, so it naturally caught my eye. When I got closer though it transcended and destroyed any notions I had about it, bikes, or electrical design by the sheer attention to detail, resourcefulness, and the oddly organic way it was built. ***YOU HAVE TO DOWNLOAD THESE PHOTOS OR AT LEAST CLICK ON THEM AND ZOOM IN TO REALLY SEE THE AMAZING ATTENTION TO DETAIL PUT INTO THIS BIKE. BLOGGERS PHOTOS ARE JUST NOT BIG ENOUGH TO CATCH IT ALL***


This is the bike from the side. From this you can notice many upgrades and interesting customizations. Starting more generally, the bike itself seems like it used to be a motor scooter that was retro-fitted with bicycle pedals. I dont actually know if the motor works or if its 100% pedal power, but from the looks it seems like the pedals are there for a reason. Next most obvious thing is the front wheel. Obviously a totally sweet addition done by the owner. Mountain bike wheels and shocks are perfect for the crappy sidewalks and potholed streets of New Brunswick. As I stated before I love anything with an excessive amount of knobs, switches, wires, and buttons. This bike has them all with the steering wheel/front (I really dont know what to call it) of the bike has two or three joysticks (one is wood!) a whole lot of wires, and a bunch of switches. Most of them look like they were installed by hand and werent originally there. Also note the totally sweet fan for those hot NB summer days.

This bike is a total mystery though, when I saw it, it completely defied all normal, professional, or rational electronic/design thought and theory. Which is exactly why I am utterly in love with it. It completely defies any notion of logic when it comes to building and modifying with electronics, and in a discipline based on the laws and reason of math and science, this sort of illogic is pure brilliance. Here are two photos of the front of the bike:


First of all, note the amazing World Heavy Weight Champion plastic belt piece I remember friends having when I was in Elementry school! Also, many smaller details such as the "bend and peel here sticker" and the definitely hand mounted switches (I wish I knew what they did!). Also visible, maybe a bit better in the first photo, is a totally sweet rear view mirror.


This photo really shows the brilliance of whoever made this bike. Ever have trouble seeing at night while biking? Why not use a light bulb?!


If you look closely at the first photo you will notice on the "head" or thing with all the joysticks on it there is a bunch (8) of speaker wire inputs. It took me a while to put this together but who ever built this has an entire stereo system set up within the bike! It is shown much better in this photo:



If you look closely there is tape deck! And I didnt get a good shot of it, but I swear on the other side there is cd player!!! The black rectangular box that is directly below the chair (which I realize now is also totally added on their and not originally part of the bike) is a cd deck. I counted at least 3 maybe 4 speakers all around the bike. In this photo there is one sorta under the seat, and if you look by the pedals there is a speaker facing up, and sorta under the seat another potential speaker.

After looking at all these photos and seeing all the amazing hacks and additions to this bike, there has to be a battery somewhere inside the back of the thing. Theres no other way to power a cd player, tape deck, light bulb, and those really cool orange and red car lights that he attached to the bike.

Another thing that boggles my mind is the drill mounted upside down and inside the chassis of the bike! Not only is it mounted perfectly but I have no idea what it does, why its there, and how its being held into place (upon further inspection I see there is a spring that is holding it in place). There is no battery on it so at first I thought it was just sort of there, BUT, I just looked closely at the photographs and there are two small white and red wires coming out of it meaning that the drill is ALSO powered by some sort of internal battery. Now this is a total stretch, but why would someone have a drill pointed inward like that? Maybe its to turn the gears/chain! Which is fucking genius, such a simple thought, it turns, probably with enough torque (although this thing looks pretty heavy) to move it, but it must be so much more complicated to implement like that. You can buy tiny motors for your bike that cost hundreds if not thousands of dollars, but this guy did it with a frickin drill!!! The utter resourcefulness of this bike is completely inspiring.


This photo shows a few more nice details. The tupper ware top patching up a hole, a nice leatherish pouch for holding stuff, and my favorite, a tape holder mounted directly on the bike next to the 2nd drink holder. Or it could really be the tape is also patching up some sort of structural flaw, either way both are cool with me. Also note sweet green hubcap attachments, and a knob to the right of the drill. I wish I knew what this knob did!!



This is a photo of the back side. More cool orange and red car lights, a ton of stray wires, a random 2 chord power chord from somewhere, and my favorite part, a power outlet!!! I dream of being able to talk to the guy who made this and ask a million questions only to be answered in yoda esque cryptic messages and riddles. And for the icing on the cake, a z100 sticker, fanny back (if the bike had a "fanny" the pack is placed in the appropriate area) and antenna for receiving radio transmissions from space and beyond. Or maybe....BROADCASTING transmissions to space. Probably not, but this thing took off with a hidden jet pack or something I would not be surprised.

To this day I wish I sat next to this beautiful bike and waited for its owner/mad genius builder to show up and had a long conversation with him (I know its a guy btw because I saw him later that day when I was driving by George and Albany). But I was in hurry probably to something unimportant and missed my chance. If ANYONE knows ANYTHING about this bike, who built, anything at all PLEASE EMAIL ME!!! reidbingham [[at]] gmail [[dot]] com. I would be forever grateful, especially with winter coming up and my chances of seeing thing outdoors diminishing.

1 comment:

jurassic_p said...

hey, actually, we did see him. he came out just as you finished camera-ing and then scootered away! he just scooted too fast.
p.s. good observation watson.