Author Topic: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)  (Read 1445 times)

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Offline myersa314

A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« on: October 11, 2013, 08:38:02 am »
Hello everyone! My name is Anfernee Myers, I'm a senior at Berea-Midpark High School in Ohio. I am enrolled in an engineering course and working on a year long project to invent or innovate a new, useful product. A partner and myself are currently working on a new innovation to attach an umbrella to a bike. We'd like if you would take the short time to complete this small survey (the link will be posted below), so that we may collect the data for our class. If you have any questions or other feedback you'd like to give, you can email me at the address listed below. We would love your help! Thank you.

Link: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1czW5lVfyUObx6mlHqX0_Go7b-9EhKm71kUomOAXurAQ/viewform

E-mail: myersanfernee@yahoo.com

Offline DaveB

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #1 on: October 11, 2013, 08:55:46 am »
It's been done.  And, I will also point out, not very successfully. 

Offline indyfabz

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2013, 10:22:39 am »
An umbrella rarely does me much good when I am walking for any length.

Offline John Nelson

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #3 on: October 14, 2013, 10:38:39 am »
Interesting idea. I'd love to see some pictures or sketches of what you have in mind. There are many significant challenges to overcome (e.g., wind, drag) and I'd like to hear your ideas on how you plan to do that. Initially, I think people will be resistant to the idea because it's not clear that you can make this feasible. So before you can get people excited about this idea, you'll have to convince them that it's practical.

Offline mmounties

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2013, 10:50:36 pm »
I second John. 

When living in Germany, I tried the umbrella on occasion.  I found it ineffective because riding through the rain on a bike is similar to walking in blowing, i.e., sideways, rain.  A normal umbrella doesn't handle such conditions very well and usually was able to keep my head and upper body dry but from the seat down I got wet anyway.  My preferred solution has become a poncho and rain pants as it provides the ventilation of an umbrella (meaning I don't steam myself from the inside) and also protects my nether regions.  It may not be the most resistance friendly solution but then drag when riding in the rain isn't a concern for me.  I'm not looking to break any records in the best conditions, never mind when it's raining.

I'd be very interested to see what you have in mind though, especially how you solve the 'blowing rain' problem.
-- Tina

Offline PeteJack

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2013, 03:19:29 am »
The few times I've been blessed with a tailwind I've thought that an umbrella would make a good sail to pull me along. BTW when I went to the Asturias mountains in Spain 50 (yikes!) years ago all the shepherds carried and used umbrellas they are an intensely practical item.

Offline freightbike

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #6 on: October 20, 2013, 01:16:18 pm »
 My mind has a picture of what an umbrella on a bicycle would look like. To make such a thing possible or practical to the average cyclist, I think requires a redesign of the concept. When I'am out riding, and I encounter precipitation, the question I find myself asking is, "would putting something between me and the precipitation make me more or less comfortable". Often if the rainfall is light, I will put nothing additional on with the expectation that my exertion will negate and evaporate the wetness that occurs. If the weather is hot or very warm, putting nothing on is kind of a relief. The only problem one encounters is the shock to body of cool raindrops. Once you are wet, as in totally soaked, it just becomes your reality. Putting on raingear, in such a situation could make a person sweat so much that they need a shower anyway.
 It becomes a question of balance between protection from the rain and ventilation for the excess heat. I think an umbrella type system would need to be aerodynamic but not get in the way of forward vision and rider safety. I think the traditional umbrella shape, function and deploy ability would have to be entirely abandoned. That said, you do need a system that would be easily set up and taken down, all the while being flexible.
 The big hole in the currently available options is the space above the neck. One can get a helmet cover that repels rain. But the big problem as I experience it is the face. I have wondered if some kind of positive pressure face mask could work to keep rain out and yet not get all fogged up with respiratory vapors.
May the wind at your back always smell like home.
                  MORG

Offline PeteJack

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2013, 07:06:45 pm »
Quote
But the big problem as I experience it is the face.
Too true. I got caught in a thunderstorm in Pennsylvania this summer  while going downhill at about 20 mph. It was scary, I couldn't see a thing and was barely able to pull into a gas station at the bottom of the hill. Even peering over my specs didn't help much. Anybody made wipers for glasses yet?

Offline freightbike

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2013, 07:19:56 pm »
HA! I've got that one beat. On my trip to new Zealand, my front fender got torn off somehow. I was descending a very large hill just as a sheep rancher moved his flock out on to the road ahead of me. The sheep all decided to defecate on the road and I got a face full as I swooped down through them. LOL
May the wind at your back always smell like home.
                  MORG

Offline DaveB

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2013, 05:52:23 pm »
Talk about thread drift!!!.  Anyway, has anyone actually the the OP's survey?  I'm reluctant to open links I don't know about so has anyone else tried it?

Offline WonderMonkey

Re: A New Accessory (Looking for Feedback)
« Reply #10 on: October 31, 2013, 10:33:23 pm »
I completed your survey.  I think this is terrific for an engineering project though I don't think it will be practical for real-world use.  However I don't think that ending up with something that is actually real-world usable is always the point.  It's an engineering PROBLEM and you are trying to be clever in solving it.  Post pictures or drawings and maybe we can help you brainstorm.