Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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One-Piece Bicycle

theft-proof disposable bike with hub lock
  (+11, -3)(+11, -3)
(+11, -3)
  [vote for,

This is a simple, rugged, China-style bicycle with no gears or hand brakes, only a back pedal brake.

The wheels, fork, handlebar and pedals are permanently attached to this bicycle. The wheel axles are welded to the frame and one contiguous piece is used for the fork/handlebar array, as well as the pedal array.

This bike cannot be dismantled without damaging the parts, rendering them worthless. If a part brakes the whole bike must be replaced. But this isn't such a big problem, since a) it's over-engineered with thicker than usual steel wheels and oversize bearings, so parts rarely brake b) it's a relatively low tech piece of equipment mass produced in China, costing only $100.

Of course all of this will make it very heavy, but this isn't such a big problem either, because it is intended for utility cycling in cities, not for performace cycling. (weight reduction in bicycles only achieves marginal improvements in performance anyhow since aerodynamic drag accounts for 90% of power)

For extra security, a lock is integrated into the back wheel hub in such a way that only way to break the lock is to break the bike.

The combination of low price, lack of removable parts, and hub locking will make this one of the most theft-resistant bikes on the market.

kinemojo, May 30 2006


       Crude but functional, and could become works of art as technique evolves. It would be interesting to see how few pieces you could reduce the design to - some novel tube bends would come about.
normzone, May 30 2006

       Sounds like a challenge.   

       One very unusual method of theft prevention that I saw, was when the bike had been lifted to the top of a streetlamp, and then dropped down so that the lamp ended up in the middle of the triangle of the frame. Steal that!
Ling, May 30 2006

       I have a beautiful Trek bicycle that is a dust catcher in my apartment because it is too heavy for me to carry up and down 3 flights just to go for a ride and too big to roll up and down the steps. I live in a high crime area so I would love for someone to come up with a new innovative theft-protection that I can personally buy for my own bicycle since I don't think anyone cares to provide a better bike rack for me.
AH, May 30 2006

       No one will take the trouble to steal a $100 bike with a lock. I doubt your hub will work. It might work on an internally geared hub.
geo8rge, May 30 2006

       //If a part brakes the whole bike must be replaced. // What if the brake brakes?
ldischler, May 30 2006

       [kinemojo], it sounds like the same problem we have here in California with car stereos. Somewhere, there is a thriving black market in junk radios.   

       Edit: I just started doodling - this would work best with one-sided support for wheels. You'd also want some primitive suspension - the cost has come down so far, and they're so robust, the suspension would not be a desireable theft item.
normzone, May 30 2006

       //but I can assure you that climbing a hill with my lighter aluminum bike is non-marginally easier than it was with my previous heavy steel bike.//   

       Yes, I agree that it woudn't be much use in hilly cities. Here in central London there aren't many steep roads.
kinemojo, May 30 2006

       1. I wonder if you could achive this on a normal bicycle with some extra welding. Anywhere you see a bolt, just tack it a bit.   

       2. A bike that can't be stolen is a good target for vandalism when the theif gets frustrated. I advise making the tires out of solid rubber like an exercise bike or something. (You can use softer rubber for traction and handling.) Let the suspension take care of the crappy ride that would result. Besides... less rolling resistance is good for biking anyway. On flat ground, a heavy bike doesn't matter much unless you're accelerating, stopping, or have low tire pressure.
kevinthenerd, May 31 2006

       [+] Sweet idea! I'd actually thought this had been baked before, but a quick google search proved me inaccurate. I'd buy one of these. If you can get an insurance on it, it would pay for any parts 'broken' by an attempted theft.
kuupuuluu, May 31 2006

       //this would work best with one-sided support for wheels.//   

       I agree. This would still allow pneumatic tyres.   

       //You'd also want some primitive suspension//   

       I'd rather keep the number of moving parts to a minimum (cheaper and less chance of breaking), and I think the tyres+springy saddle would offer enough suspension.
kinemojo, May 31 2006

       [kinemojo], there was a bit of a joke up there a while back when [ldischler] asked //What if the brake brakes?//. Since you provided an actual response, I'm guessing that you didn't pick up on the fact that you've spelled "break" as "brake". Point goes to [ldischler] for trying to correct your spelling by being clever.
zigness, May 31 2006

       oh, you're right... I must be dyslexic.
kinemojo, May 31 2006

       I like the idea of a simple clunky bike - I hate flimsy equipment that falls apart - bring on the heavy bike! +
xenzag, May 31 2006

       Having grown up with stone-simple waterpipe bikes, I disagree. Rudimentary suspension is a blessing, and the technology has become robust.   

       Weight is also a curse - you would see rapid evolution of the design to improve performance.
normzone, May 31 2006

       Russian cold-war era bikes. Each squad of 15 school students is issued ONE. In the event of one student being rendered unable to carry-on use, train the other 14 as how to wrest it from the cold, dead (or tired) hands of his/her formerly bike-wielding commerade to use it to sally forth to school. *Aaah - the good 'ol Days*
Letsbuildafort, Jun 01 2006

       //Weight is also a curse - you would see rapid evolution of the design to improve performance.//   

       When I was in Amsterdam I cycled on a tank bike with no hand brakes, no gears, and no suspension and it did the job of getting me to places really well.
kinemojo, Jun 01 2006

       Fine. You build and sell yours at 20 kg, and I'll build and sell mine at 12 kg, and we'll see which one is more popular.
normzone, Jun 01 2006

       I think this has been baked ages ago by Finnish Army for one. During my compulsory army stint long time ago I used one of these green, heavy single-geared bikes after my 12 speed hybrid bike. An experience which puts you off from bicycling forever if you don't know anything better.
Pellepeloton, Mar 22 2008

       Yeah, sounds like the hard-tired bikes of my earlier youth.
normzone, Mar 23 2008

       A long time ago I heard someone say (a stand-up comedian's routine?) that all bikes weigh 100 lbs. Why? Because:
a 100 lb bike needs no lock
a 90 lb bike needs a 10 lb lock
an 80 lb bike needs a 20 lb lock
and so on until:
a 10 lb bike needs a 90 lb lock
Canuck, Mar 23 2008

       I like it (+) The problem I see is to taylor it to the rider. If the seat doesn't adjust, that would annoy me more than the weight. Maybe a seat on a flex post that is bent by a bolt. I think you could do solid tires as my 120psi tires don't flex much anyway. Put in a three speed gearbox with coaster brake in the hub and weld on the axle pegs and I think it could sell well.
MisterQED, Mar 23 2008


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