4:45 PM

Chainless

Modello Donna
Particolare Ruota
These Italian guys make some pretty distinct simple bikes.  More interestingly for me though, they have a bike that has its power transferred through a drive shaft instead of a conventional chain.  This reminds me of a group of friends I had in college that were competing in a Chainless Bicycle Challenge.  Their bikes used a series of solenoids and oil to transfer the energy hydraulically.  It was a crazy idea but they got the thing to work, although, it was extremely complicated and cumbersome.  I was one of the first riders of that bike before it was even finalized.  The thing was very top heavy and the power transfer wasn’t seamless yet so it made a 5% gradient feel like 25%.  The guys worked very hard on it though so the final product was probably a lot better than what I tried out.  Ultimately though, the power losses due to the pneumatics proved that the century old chain drive is still the best we have.  Of course, that makes me wonder how well the Cicli drive shaft bike works. 
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 teamv21 cc7
 
Parker Hannifin Chainless Challenge
Cicli Italia