Hitting the Sweet Spot in Urban Transport: Frankentrikes

Hitting the Sweet Spot in Urban Transport: Frankentrikes


Traffic Tickets Costly Maintenance Parking Pollution Devastation (sound of engine trying to start) (father)We need Gas. (mother)We need Gas. (daughter) We need Gas! The future isn’t about one perspective or another… Get in! Let’s GO! (grunts) …it’s about ALL of us. Share the road. There’s GOT to be a better way to get
around in this city! Imagine if you could have a bicycle that was sort of like a car… but with most of the features and few of the drawbacks? (Furiosa) Action! Hi, my name is Segue Fischlin and I build human-powered electric-assist tricycles. Tricycles are not new, but with the
advent of modern electronics and revolutionary improvements in capacitor technology, this vehicle type now has enormous untapped potential. This is a Frankentrike. Three wheels gives you the stability to carry heavy loads easily in a vehicle that is half the bulk of a four-wheeled vehicle. It features all-wheel drive with motors to power the front wheels, and pedals to power the rear wheel, along with a powerful hydraulic braking system. Go 25 miles an hour and carry a quarter ton of cargo. Drive it in the car and bike lanes and park it on the
sidewalk. A removable canopy keeps you and your cargo out of the elements. It can break down to fit in the back of a minivan, easily climb hills, ride through rough terrain, and carry large and heavy payloads at speed. In 1997, I was seriously
injured in an auto collision that nearly cost me my life. My long journey of recovery included a bicycle trip to Mexico towing a 4′ x 6′ trailer, and later building a rickshaw taxi for Burning Man. If cycling with all that extra weight sounds exhausting, it WAS, and in 2006, I was very grateful to be introduced to the
world of electric assist. That same year, The Frankentrike was born. (mad scientist) It’s ALIVE! Life drove me to this solution to meet my personal transport needs, but I quickly discovered that others also saw its usefulness for their own lives. Recognition and demand began immediately. Would you like to ride around Oakland like that? (father, off screen) She does! Yeah we pretty much want to ride around Oakland like that all the time. Do you want to ride in the front of that? Oh yeah, he would! Although a perfect solution for the earth-minded, the trike is *more* than a ‘green vehicle’; it represents a paradigm shift, catalyzing healthier, happier, more connected environments and cities. Safely drive at city speeds, be recognized as a full size vehicle, but have the convenience of a bicycle. Haul your gear; transport your family and friends; evolve with the current technology and in keeping with the changing times. By sharing our streets, we can relieve some their burden and expedite our mutual evolution. I built three tricycles for others before concluding that custom builds were financially unsustainable for a reasonable price, and that the process didn’t offer enough flexibility for experimentation and refinement. Despite the fact that we have been forced to rethink our business structure, requests for tricycles have not stopped. While building SIX fully functional tricycles has taught me a lot about what works, I consider the design only 90% completed. Because each Frankentrike is a tremendous effort to build, I would like to hire professional engineers to assist with identifying any long-term weaknesses in the frame design, and to explore custom suspension. And also to get a bigger workspace. I mean, look at this place! Once we’ve refined the design into a production model, we will manufacture our first small batch of Frankentrikes. Your donations will enable us to design the best-engineered electric-assist cargo trike in the world. With enough support, we can even have the first vehicles available to deliver within 16 months of campaign finish. Thank you! Thank you for helping us to
revolutionize our cities to make them safer and happier and healthier places
to live. In the not-so-distant future, you and yours could be rolling the streets of YOUR City on a Frankentrike.

One thought on “Hitting the Sweet Spot in Urban Transport: Frankentrikes

  1. I shared this on one of my Facebook feeds. I live in a very bike friendly community in southern NJ. I wish you the best of luck!

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