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Variable Truck Adjustment

Trucks that will tighter and loosen with speed
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Anyone who has ever used a skateboard knows that a skateboard with very loose trucks is just as hard to operate at high speed as one with very tight trucks is to operate at low speed. The only way to adjust them, however, is to get a wrench and either tighten or loosen the nut. If cars can have variable, speed-determined steering ratios, why shouldn't skateboards be able to have variable, speed-determined truck adjustment (which essentially is the steering ratio)? The first part that I propose is a very small computer and lithium ion batteries mounted on the bottom of the skateboard that connects to a wheel speedometer. The second part is a small torque wrench that uses electric motors to loosen or tighten the nuts on the trucks. I am certain that it is possible to make a very small unit capable of loosening and tightening a nut because I remember reading in a magazine about a nitrious oxide company that made electric nitrous oxide bottle opener/closers. While it is slightly different to turn the valve of a nitrous bottle than turn a nut, It could easily be adapted. The electric nut tightener/loosener is then wired into the small computer which tells it when and how much to turn each nut. Of course it could also be used manually by a hand-held control in case the rider wants to manually adjust the trucks. I can certainly see this coming in handy around sharp turns at low speeds when the rider finds him/herself heading straight towards the opposite curb, or when going down a steep hill where the rider suddenly finds him/herself wobbling and losing ballence and control because the trucks are too loose.

Edit: An alternative method to get the same effect is to use memory metal bushings that would tighten or loosen the truck with electricity. Thanks, [xaviergisz].

acurafan07, Feb 08 2007

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       I have never boarded a skate, but wouldn't it be more in the spirit of things to have a mechanical device to do this?   

       I am thinking of the low-tech devices seen in old pre-engine-management engines (like a timing advancer based on vacuum lines and centrifugal forces).
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 08 2007
  

       Now you're talking. I used to wish for this when I was riding road luge - I wanted the action tight for high speed straightaways, and looser for slower cornering situations. Ah, fond memories.   

       I'd advocate a default setting of tight, and a set if spring loaded levers you could loosen them momentarily with.
normzone, Feb 08 2007
  

       A 'governor' type device built into the wheels wouldn't be too difficult to implement, with a (non-rotating)control shaft running through the axle to the truck bush nut. Of course, it would mean custom wheels to replace, but a wheel-and-(polyurethane)-tyre arrangement could be easily developed.
neutrinos_shadow, Feb 08 2007
  

       I reckon a mechanical solution would be clunky.   

       how about using memory metal that tightens/loosens truck with applied voltage.
xaviergisz, Feb 09 2007
  

       So memory metal bushings? Sounds good. I think i'll edit that in.
acurafan07, Feb 09 2007
  

       If the wheels can be made to pump air through the axle to the joint, the increased pressure would tighten it as the wheels speed up. There would need to be an adjustable sized hole somewhere to allow an amount of air to escape so you could tune how hard you wanted it to get.
marklar, Feb 09 2007
  

       It would also make exciting whizzing noises that raised in pitch with your speed.
BunsenHoneydew, Feb 09 2007
  

       [There would need to be an adjustable sized hole somewhere to allow an amount of air to escape so you could tune how hard you wanted it to get]   

       Sounds like some kind of prosthetic to me, but I'll stay with my self-regulating stock equipment.
normzone, Feb 14 2007
  

       Awesome! This could prevent speed wobbles.
quantum_flux, Feb 14 2007
  

       Add selectable dampers that absorb small steering oscillations before they develop into a serious case of the wiggles. I generally rode fast, just to get somewhere, and kept my trucks tight, but it was never enough at some speeds. Super ollie bun.
elhigh, Feb 20 2007
  
      
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