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Inline Wheel Automobile

Is this a skate or a motorcycle or what?
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This idea in short: A car with three or more wheels, all arranged in a line from front to back.

You object: Steering will be horrible, since the middle wheels will drag!

If the middle wheel(s) turn at the same time, in the same direction, as the front wheel, but at a lesser angle, then drag won't happen.

You object: It will fall down!

If it has some retractable legs for when it's parked, it won't fall down.

What about when the legs are up?

We have two systems to make the vehicle self balancing.

The first balancing system is used when the vehicle is moving slowly, and is kept ready to act at high speeds in case of loss of traction. By using a pair of spinning gyroscopes mounted in motorized gimbals, and a smart controller we can use gyroscopic precession to keep our vehicle upright and stable.

The second balancing system is used whenever the vehicle is moving fast enough. It works by steering all of the vehicle's wheels leftwards or rightwards, which torques the vehicle around the roll axis without changing the steering angle.

This balance steering could mechanically added to the driver's controls using differential or epicycle gears, or it could use a steer-by-wire system.

Shape: Although not *really* required, I think it would be cool if it were shaped like a cylinder with a rounded cone at the front and pointed cone at the rear. And rocket fins, so nobody thinks "wingless airplane."

Serviceability: If parking legs are strong enough to support the entire vehicle's weight, then there should be no problem changing tires, nor using the legs as support points for a common two post automotive lift.

Storage: Cylinders give more interior volume, per unit of structural material, than rectangles.

Aerodynamics: Most of the vehicle's drag will be on the tip of the front cone, on the rear view mirrors, and the leading tire. Every tire after the front one will be in the slipstream of the one in front of it.

Looks: Who wouldn't want to drive a rocket car?

Towing: Tricky! If the feet of the parking legs had solid plastic blocks on their bottoms, the vehicle could probably be dragged up onto a flatbed tow truck. The blocks would wear, but if towing isn't done often, it would not be that big of a problem to replace them as needed. Alternatively, some sort of temporary wheels just for towing could be attached.

goldbb, Feb 28 2017

Two wheeled car http://litmotors.com/c1/
Gyroscopes are cool [goldbb, Feb 28 2017]

Can you believe that in 1909 a self balancing railcar ran under it's own power? https://en.wikipedi.../wiki/Gyro_monorail
Good grief that's old tech! [goldbb, Mar 01 2017]

http://www.blackcou...4-detail/story.html Two wheel in-line gyroscopically balanced car with retractable stabilising legs as described above [pocmloc, Mar 01 2017]

Rather a lot of gyrocycles youtube https://www.youtube...watch?v=PunuGGJ8dqs
[not_morrison_rm, Mar 01 2017]

[link]






       My objections: Inline wheels have no significant advantage. The problem of drag is nowhere near enough to justify such a drastic loss of stability. The weight added by the balancing system would reduce reliability and add enough weight to render moot the improvement in aerodynamics. Worse, it adds a system which, if it fails, will immediately cause an accident with a probable roll-over at whatever speed the car is moving at the time.
Voice, Mar 01 2017
  

       Linkee. Missing only the 3rd wheel (what is the third wheel for, again?
pocmloc, Mar 01 2017
  

       Rather a lot of self-balancing two-wheelers, link.
not_morrison_rm, Mar 01 2017
  
      
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