I recently got a bike. It is an old school Schwinn that only needed a new set of tires and some grip tape. It’s very light, and pretty trim. Right now it is a multi speed but I could see converting it to a single speed down the road. Having a bike got me thinking about designing a bike that does everything a bike needs to do and nothing more. So first we must ask the question: “what makes a bike, a bike?” I’d say it comes down to these things:

  • 2 wheels
  • A rotatable front wheel for steering
  • A seat for sitting
  • A mechanism to transfer power from the user to the road.
  • A mechanism to slow the movement

The above is really the essence of a bicycle, and if you look at a bike you will see that each of the items are captured by a point in physical space in relation to each other.

  • Each wheel has a mount.
  • There is a fork tube.
  • There is a seat location.
  • There is a pedal mount.

Assuming we achieve the acceleration and deceleration through a fixed sprocket and chain we simply need to connect the points in space to tie the bike together. I took the approach that the shortest distance between two points in space is a line. So we draw one line from the fork tube to the rear wheel mount, and one line from the seat to the pedal mount, and one line from the fork to the front mount. This results in the bike you see in the pictures.

The construction would be of light weight aluminum extrusions, powder-coated in this case a baby blue. I’d likely want to replace the wheels which three spoke carbon wheels.