The biggest innovation to bike riding in the 21st Century is launching on Kickstarter, and it was initially designed by a group of students at Dartmouth University. Fear and frustration while learning to ride a bike will be a thing of the past thanks to the world’s first and only Auto Balance Bicycle from Jyrobike, which launched its crowd funding campaign on Kickstarter today (https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/529668138/jyrobike-auto-balance-bicycle), June 3, 2014. Balance whilst pedaling is the most important skill a child needs to master when learning to ride a bicycle. However, they can become easily discouraged after a few spills and parents have aching backs from trying to balance the bike for them.
Jyrobike designs and manufactures Auto Balance Bicycles with a unique Control Hub built into the front wheel. Inside the Control Hub is a motor driven gyroscope, which when turned on, keeps the rider balanced and upright while they are pedaling, even when they tip or wobble. The first Jyrobikes are aimed at 3-8 year olds and will be available in 12” and 16” wheel sizes.
For most observers Jyrobike has a magical, almost impossible quality, however the technology is actually based upon the basic and well-known scientific laws found in all gyroscopes or flywheels. When turned on, it acts like a gyroscope or gyro and provides a stabilizing force, working just as gyros do to keep helicopters stable in the air, boats stable at sea and spaceships stable in orbit.
“For the past two years, we’ve been perfecting the innovation which we discovered from an incredible group of students and we’ve been working on a new bicycle aimed at helping children learn to ride in a single afternoon - by any measure, our goal is no mean feat,” said Jyrobike CEO and founder, Robert Bodill. “On behalf of the team at Jyrobike, I’m thrilled to announce the launch of our first products through Kickstarter.”
The Kickstarter campaign hopes to raise an initial funding goal of $100,000 USD and will offer several stretch goals after the initial funding goal is met. During the 30-day campaign, pledgers will have the opportunity to fund and pre-order items like the complete Jyrobike, the magic Control Hub (without the bike), a limited edition Jyrobike, and more. Following the Kickstarter campaign, the first Jyrobikes for direct consumer sales are expected to hit the US market by Q1 2015.
Jyrobike was initially created by students at Dartmouth University and has been developed in a joint effort by cycling and technology experts in the UK, the Netherlands and the United States, led by CEO and founder, Robert Bodill.
Jyrobike is built on the core principle that bikes become inherently stable at higher speeds because the faster a wheel spins, the more balanced it becomes. Working on this assumption, the research and development team experimented by putting a gyroscope - a faster, spinning wheel - inside a slower wheel - e.g. the front wheel of the bicycle. As part of the process, Jyrobike invented a patented Control Hub that is able to intelligently generate an intrinsic stabilizing force that resists the toppling force of gravity on the bicycle.
The Control Hub behaves according to standard gyroscope rules and resists any angular force acting about its transverse axis. That is why it is able to resist toppling caused by gravity. The principle of gyroscope precession dictates that counteracting the handlebar movement that follows any lean action will in turn generate a counter force to that of gravity and correct the lean to restore the bike upright.
The Control Hub will feature three stabilization settings which can be adjusted accordingly as the rider builds their skills and confidence. Parents can also use an optional wireless controller to increase/decrease the balance settings while their child is in motion – providing additional stability or easing them into balancing themselves. Once a child has mastered riding the Jyrobike without the use of the Control Hub, the gyro can be removed to transform the Jyrobike into a light-weight kids’ bicycle or the Control Hub can be substituted with a standard bike wheel from Jyrobike.
“Learning to ride a bicycle can be tough, but learning is one of life’s greatest moments… That exact moment when a person realizes that they just went from ‘can’t ride’ to ‘can ride’. It is nothing less than life inspiring,” added Bodill. “Our inspiration comes from that perfect, wonderful moment of joy and freedom. Our passion is designing a bicycle that transports as many people as possible directly to that moment of delight, in the quickest and easiest way possible”.
To learn more about Jyrobike and it’s Kickstarter campaign, please visit: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/529668138/jyrobike-auto-balance-bicycle
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