Re: [rootsradicals] Re: Stoked Urban Assault Xtracycle
- On Jul 14, 2006, at 5:44 AM, BlueFrogPrpleDog@... wrote:
> I did some reading on that Stoke Monkey at the cleverchimp.com webYou must pedal in time with the motor whenever you engage it, yes.
> site and
> I think it's really neat that it's designed so that you are
> pedaling and must constantly pedal and that the battery really
> only kicks in to
> help with tough hills and so forth... am I correct?
You can, of course, coast as usual, but there's no "powered
coasting." The assist doesn't "kick in" of its own accord: you turn
the throttle to get help whenever you want/need it. The rest of the
time, it's just dead weight on the bike, with no effect on normal
pedaling efficiency or technique.
> So, technically, you can goYou control when and how much help the motor provides. You can use it
> at your own power at will and then let the battery kick in when
> you need it
> most? Is this correct?
continually if you want, or spread it out over a long day; it's up to
> This is fascinating to me because it could be aI designed it to let me haul my family around San Francisco hills
> great answer for folks with bad knees who still love touring!
> Plus, it's
> fascinating to me because I'm not as young as I once was and when
> my FreeRad is
> fully loaded, and my youngest is on the snap deck, and we're
> pulling a loaded
> trailer (plus my huge butt alone) and we come upon a hill that is
> sandy, I'm
> struggling! I've never been able to master gears too well. Am I
> correct? Is
> the Stoke Monkey designed to just give you that extra umph when
> you need it
without destroying my sketchy knees. It works that way, yes. But you
can also use it to go fast, with little or no load, and arrive
without being covered in sweat.
I'm not sure I'd recommend it for touring, at least not for what I
understand by touring (multiple-day treks, camping, long days, no
hurry). It takes a lot of discipline not to use the motor semi-
continuously. For this reason I think it is somewhat at odds with the
ethos of most recreational riding, where your own strength and pain
tolerance limits the pace in a way that's ultimately enjoyable, and
that makes you stronger. Beyond a certain range, the added weight and
bulk of the system becomes a liability. I wouldn't want to plan my
tour around recharging opportunities, though I could see it for fast
solo "credit card" touring, maybe.
I think it shines brightest for utility trips up to a couple hours,
where you need to cover more ground or carry more stuff than you
could really enjoy without help, or a car. I definitely wouldn't
recommend Stokemonkey for your only bike, because it's overkill for a
lot of riding that could be enjoyed more simply on a regular bike,
and while it's fun, it's fun in a different way than regular riding,
and you'd miss the old fun. Part of that old fun is social -- riding
with others -- and Stokemonkey puts you in a different headspace than
unassisted riders; either you go too fast for them, or you hardly
work at all just matching their pace.
Instigator, Cleverchimp LLC