New Compact Folding Bicycle Is A Leading Contestant For The James Dyson Award
I wonder what it's like to be James Dyson. That guy can't go anywhere without having his mind race about the inherent flaws in everything around him and the tweaks needed to make them better. Hell, he can't even take a pee without having to fix something. A blessing and a curse, I'd imagine.
Regardless of what you think about 400 MPH hand dryers and double-priced vaccums, inspiring innovation within a population of would-be inventors is a very positive concept. The James Dyson Award contest does just that and one of this year's top contestants demonstrates how much this hoard of unknowns has to offer.
The Contortionist, designed by 24-year-old design student Dominic Hargreaves, is a unique folding bicycle that folds down so that the frame fits between the wheels. The package is only as high as the wheels, which are a full-size set of 26s, like the ones on your mountain bike, instead of the tiny, awkward wheels typical of folding bikes. The resulting package is slim and easy to transport onto the bus or into the office without sacrificing performance on the road. Once folded, you can pull the bike by its wheels like a Samsonite upright, making it very easy to roll from place to place.
While Hargreaves awaits the verdict on the Dyson Award (his project is on the short list), interest among manufacturers is brewing and its quite possible The Contortionist will make its way into production. Three companies are reportedly interested in manufacturing it. The price tag has been estimated at $700, but currently that price is quite rough.
For a closer look, check out the following video of the bike: