Our Prototypes column introduces new vehicle concepts and presents visuals from designers who illustrate the ideas. Some of them will be extensions of existing concepts, others will be new, some will be production ready, and others really far-fetched.
The Jironimo is an electro-mechanical system that uses gyroscopes to keep a child's bike balanced at low speeds and even when stopped. This device/accessory could be used instead of training wheels to keep the bike from falling or to assist kids in creating new tricks by using the force of the gyroscopes to execute new maneuvers.
Last year while working on the Arrow concept, I came across the C-1 from LitMotors, which uses gyroscopes to keep a vehicle upright at low speeds. This technology is being developed for a full-size enclosed bike, but it's only a matter of time before it can be reduced and adapted to the bicycle market.
How it works
The Jironimo would include one or more gyroscopes packaged in a plastic container. This unit could simply be bolted onto the frame of your existing bike in the middle of the chassis, very close to the center of gravity. The system would come with its own charger and battery pack.
The Jironimo would measure the acceleration and deceleration of the bike, its speed, angles, etc. It would activate based on the desired effect of the pilot. For instance, it could be programmed to assist the child from time to time in keeping the bike balanced, or it could stay activated 100 per cent of the time. When kids use training wheels, they tend to get stuck because the middle wheel gets lifted in the air. The Jironimo would simplify things by eliminating the side wheels.
The Jironimo 'bike' would also feature integrated LED lights on the side and in the front so that users would be able to see around them and be seen. The seat would act as a second suspension along with the bike's standard shock absorbers mounted in the fork.
What it's used for
The Jironimo's balancing algorithm would be adapted to certain bikes, like the childrens' bike shown in the renderings. However, each user would also be allowed to access the software and fine-tune their own criteria. You could hack the machine, play with parameters, and use the Jironimo on other bikes, other vehicles, or even on simple accessories. In short, it goes way beyond replacing training wheels.
The images of the Jironimo concept were created by Abhishek Roy. Roy is the founder of Lunatic Koncepts, a start-up design lab based in India. Roy's team also created the renderings for the Xoupir commuter bus and the Iruka outboard engine.
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