Well, not quite. While I am looking for a bit of onboard power on my bike, it’s kind of impractical to be tethered to one of these.
A few posts ago I wrote that my ride was not going to be about how many tech gadgets I could bring with me [linkie]. I have to admit that I’ve found there’s a fine line, though, between bringing just what you need and going full Navin Johnson.
But I do want bright reliable LED lights front and rear without the hassle of carrying extra batteries and keeping up with them and enough auxiliary power to recharge small electronic devices, like my iPhone and Bad Elf GPS unit [linkie] on the fly. So I added to my bike build one of Schmidt’s P-238 filled hubs.
…heh, just kidding about the plutonium part…
You can read real facts (and probably more than you ever wanted to know) about the Schmidt dynamo hubs here [linkie]. The big thing for me is that the hub sounds bulletproof. I just need it to last about ten weeks without any issues. It sounds, though, like it will still be functioning after I’m not.
To pull off power to charge electronics I had one of these included in the build.
Yes, it’s an honest-to-gosh USB port on a bicycle. Swiss-made, too, by a company called Supernova. There’s more information here [linkie]. The little rubber cap hanging open in the photo covers the port, which delivers cleanly regulated 5 volt power at 500 milliamps. That just happens to be the spec power for USB 2. The only catch is that I have to be riding at least 12 kilometers/about eight miles per hour. Something about “engaging the flux capacitor,” probably.
But enough about tech. In the next post we’ll talk about why my ride is different from this guy’s [linkie], and how I intend to keep it that way.
* I have to admit that having the bike built in the Pacific Northwest, where pretty much everything runs off hydro power, put me in a “if they can do it, I can do it too” frame of mind. I love wild rivers as much as the next guy, but the hydro dams up here are, by and large, magnificent pieces of civil engineering.