bicycle race : LUSENET : Junkyard Wars : One Thread

A race on a BMX race course. All four team members have to race, and the BMX bike is powered by your hands, not you legs. it can be two wheel, or three wheel. I have built a two wheel arm peddler some twenty years ago, and let me tell you it is a whole different ball game from conventional bicycles.

-- stephen pittman (, January 28, 2001


As an alternative, how about a high speed human powered machine? Power can be by hands, feet or combination, and any number of riders/powerplants up to 4. Some of the high speed human power machines can do over 55 mph, so the warriors have quite a challenge ahead of them.

-- Arthur Majoor (, January 28, 2001.

I think the NERDs would be very happy with that challenge...

-- pv (, January 29, 2001.

I expect Art Attace would do just fine as well, both without experts.

Cound do it on an oval track for speed, or a BMX course for maneuverability and versatility.

I like the idea of using all four team members at once!

-- Michael (Canadian P.Eng.) (, January 29, 2001.

There's an annual human-powered vehicle (HPV) contest that lots of colleges compete in. Way back in the 80's, my university had this rolling coffin for an HPV: it was about 14" wide, 14" tall, and perhaps 12 feet long. It went 50+ miles per hour, and the driver drove almost completely blind. And it tended to get sideways at top speed and start rolling. The team named her, "Miss Calculation."

-- TL (, January 30, 2001.

I have raced BMX with my kids years ago, also I have road my arm peddler for years and I can tell you that in a three wheeler configuration you have a endurance factor as well as a coordination factor and more so with a two wheeler, it would all boil down to the best design and the most coordinated crew and the design that holds together. I could race a BMX track on a three wheel or a two wheel arm peddler.So it would come down to design and crew.

-- stephen pittman (, January 30, 2001.

If they used that topic, The NERDS (tm) wouldn't be allowed to compete. No extra experts allowed.

In fact, I suggested it last year, and they took a good look at that challenge. (I told them to use my name with one of the experts)

Basic science demonstrated: How hard pushing air out of the way is. How with limited power, speed comes from aerodynamics. Power required for air drag goes up with the cube of the speed.

One team could produce a single seat streamliner, very narrow, going for absolute minimum air drag. The other team could build a multi-engine, with simpler, or just bigger aerodynamics -- should be able to get them closely matched.

You can build the fairings out of cardboard, or "coroplast" (source: old political and real-estate agency signs). IHPVA rules (No stored energy, land vehicles must have a brake, vehicle must be steered by one of the riders, riders must wear approved helmets. The "steered by" is to prevent someone building a "blind" machine, and having it remote controlled from the sidelines.)

BTW: The current "absolute maximum" speed record for a single cyclist is over 70mph. (level ground run up in still air, time last 200 meters). A single cyclist has propelled a bike around a track slightly over 50 miles in one hour.

There is a prize waiting for the first rider to break 0.1mach. (around 75mph) Its at least $25,000 (and accumulating interest). It has a couple of extra restrictions that didn't apply to the IHPVA records listed above - it has to be done at under 3,000 feet, the rider has to be able to get in and out of the machine un-assisted, and they have to be able to see where they are going.

(the next generation of IHPVA machines are using tv cameras to let the rider see where they are going. And the last few records were set at altitude, with machines that requre a "catch" crew to stop, the rider can't put a foot down, and they are taped into the machine before the start)

-- Jeff - The NERDS (tm) (, January 30, 2001.

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