Image Source: Global Tech CIO
There is nothing more interesting left in electric bikes. The first US patent for an electric bike was awarded to Ogden Bolton Jr. in 1895. The cycle he designed was powered by a battery that had a hub motor mounted on the rear wheel. The batter was attached to the crossbar of the bike. Two years later in Boston, Hosea W. Libbey designed an electric bike that was powered by a motor located in the hub of the crankset axle.
Over time, motor technologies and batteries have come a long way. However, the basics of propulsion are still the same. The current e-bike sales show a promising future. Though the current figure stands around $41 billion in 2020. This figure is expected to jump to $120 billion by 2030. Electric bikes have come a long way in terms of technology and performance but the basic running principles remain the same.
Alastair Darwood, living in North London, has recently made a cool gadget that can turn any ordinary bike into an E-bike. He has invented a clip-on motor that can make any ordinary bike with disc brakes into an effective e-bike. This amazing invention has caught the eye of Chris
Hoy, 11-time world champion and 6-time Olympics champion. Hoy has made a heavy investment in the project. He is very interested in what outcomes it might have.
Image Source: Skarper
How Does It Work?
The Skarper device requires you to replace your bike’s rear disc-brake rotor with its own DiskDrive. The DiskDrive otherwise works and looks like an ordinary disc-brake rotor. This is coupled with a 3 kg housing unit and the battery along with 250-watt-hour motor clips onto the bike frame. The disk drive slots into the clip-on unit. Here it engages with an inside gear. The spinning wheel is then reared by the motor in the special brake rotor. There is a small sensor that clips into the bike’s crank, measuring the speed and cadence as the biker pedals it.
Once everything is in its position, the Skarper offers 37 miles of assisted cycling which is a little below the legal speed of 25 kilometers per hour in the EU and the UK. You can choose to take off the clip-on and keep it in your bag once you reach the destination. The battery takes around 2.5 hours to recharge.
The only change you need to make to your existing bike is to replace the rear disc brake rotor with the DiskDrive. This modification adds around 10-ounce additional weight to your bike. This can be an issue if you cycle in Tour de France but goes unnoticed on a normal day use. The motor does not cause any additional drag, allowing you to still freewheel while riding the bike.