Is it a Parachute or a Motorcycle or Both?: Great Idea?
Patent# US 6877690 is one cool manifestation of a two dimensional fantasy (and possibly three or four if you include collisions). The Combination Powered Parachute and Motorcycle is in reality a rather mundane motorcycle with some flight components thrown into the mix to impress friends and relatives, and help you soar above and evade those members of the law you may be running from. The flight engine and all of its systems are completely independent of the conventional motorcycle engine used for surface propulsion. The components include: a peripheral and overhead safety structure, which is installed upon the motorcycle, a second flight engine, propeller, folding propeller guard, and a fuel system.
The inventor of the Combination Powered Parachute and Motorcycle provided for the transition from ground to flight with a set of laterally disposed stabilizer wheels, which also work in reverse, namely, flight to ground operation. A folding parafoil device of either the ram air inflated or partially pneumatically inflated type provides the necessary lift. In order to fly, the lateral wheels must be lowered and extended as well as the folding propeller guard. The parafoil is then deployed behind the motorcycle, lifting upon attaining flight speed.
Kudos for the sheer cleverness of this idea although who would buy it remains a moot point. Consider how some other inventors have enhanced the world of racing. Read “New Battery Technology Can Revolutionize the Motorcycle” and “Swedish Company Develops New Airbags for Motorcycle Riders”.
As far as the Combination Powered Parachute and Motorcycle is concerned, since I prefer both of my feet to be on the ground at all times except when sleeping, I think I will pass