Monovelo - The Human Powered Monowheel

By: on March 21, 2012
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Monowheels debuted in the late 19th century, but Monovelos claim to be the inaugural human-powered installation of the 21st. A nested unicycle of sorts, the Monovelo pedals and steers similar to a conventional bike, but instead of perching atop the wheel, riders chill inside of it, becoming one with prehistoric man's greatest contribution to society. Check out the photos of Chinese cyclists captivating the crowd in the LED-lit versions during the closing ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Monovelos' manufacturer claims learning to maneuver its single-track cycle takes "a few hours" which, depending on one's level of patience and ability to endure plus or minus 180 minutes of repeated lateral wipeouts, could unfold as either an excruciatingly long, or surprisingly short amount of time. Once mastered, the uni-spinner can reach peak speeds of about 12.4 mph. So experienced riders can feel confident about pissing off a potbellied pig, and being good to roll away intact, but may need to tread a little lighter in the presence of a warthog.

The Monovelo's mechanical construction consists of an ABS plastic outer wheel, steel inner wheel, and solid rubber tire (no inner tube). An outer frame houses the wheels that rotate, while an unmoving inner frame serves as a mount for the seat and pedal mechanism. Total weight is about 84 pounds, and diameter about 79 inches.

Two flavors of the Monovelo are available for purchase. The $1,790 price tag scoops up a basic vanilla version, while an extra $200 alights the wheel--and the night--with either red, white, or blue LED sprinkles.

Got love for the glow, but no so much the monowheel? Then take a gander at Monkey Lights, spectral LEDs that attach to standard two-tired transporters.

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Sick in the Head: The 10 Coolest Motorcycle Helmets

Some people say you're sick in the head for riding a motorcycle. I say you're sick in the head if you're wearing one of these motorcycle helmets. And I mean it in the very, very best sense of the word. Here are my picks...

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RYNO One Wheel Motorcycle

$5,295 from RYNO Motors »

Ever wanted to pop a perpetual wheelie? Well get ready, 'cause RYNO Motors is in production and set for the 2012 US release of two tiers of its self-balancing, single-wheeled, shit-stirring beast of a motorcycle. OK...

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$50k from Hoverbike »

The Hoverbike is what happens when one really wants to be a superhero, but really needs to figure out a way to more efficiently herd cattle. Aussie Chris Malloy has created a prototype for this motorcycle-helicopter hybrid...

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Uno Bolt E-Unicycle

$999 - $1,099 from Uno Bolt »

Uno, dos, tres...Bolt! You won't go 0 to 60 in 3.5 seconds - or ever - on the Uno Bolt, but you will have the privilege of scooting away lickety split from the lady who caught you helping yourself to her plum tree (hey...

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Boba Fett Motorcycle Helmet

Unlike a few selections in this slideshow of sick motorcycle helmets, you can probably wear HJC's new RPHA 11 Boba Fett helmet without getting laughed off the road (it's an obvious, but not over-the-top Star Wars circus...

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Cyclotron Spokeless Smart Bicycle

$1,125 - $3,038 from Cyclotron Cycles »

For all the Sam Flynns out there who need more exercise, you'll soon be able to trade in your electric Light Cycles for pedal-powered Cyclotrons on your joyrides and daily commutes. The self-described "Future of Cycling"...

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Bird of Prey Bicycle

$4,200 from Bird of Prey »

I didn't think the foam helmets and seizure-inducing neon spandex could look any more ridiculous rolling down the road, yelling at cars to get out of their lane, and then cutting into traffic at will when it suits them...

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Bike Mine Exploding Anti-Theft Alarm

$71 from Kickstarter »

Bike Mine is a thing that makes you go boommm! At least if you're a dirty thief trying to make off with a dude's bicycle or motorcycle (or boat or jet ski if you live the kind of high rollin' life where that's a risk.)...

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Litelok Flexible Bike Lock

$109.87 - $206.82 from Litelok »

Flexible, lightweight, and inordinately strong, the Litelok could have been a gymnast, but decided to take the more practical professional route of becoming an anti-theft bodyguard for bicycles. The gold-rated bike lock...

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Juggernaut Bullfrog Fat Trike

$3,300 from Rungu »

Rungu's Juggernaut fat-tire bullfrog trike makes it possible to go where a bike can't go and a car won't go. To ride where others dare only walk. To look in grandiosity somewhere between Billy the Puppet pedaling in to...

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Rungu Electric Juggernaut

By: Rungu »

Remember the Juggernaut Bullfrog Fat Trike? Now it's even fatter. And croaks way louder. To their extra-thick, triple-wheeled, all-terrain, no-BS monster, Rungu has added a 2,100-watt motor and Hi-Power Cycles controller....

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Tannus - Bike Tires That Never Go Flat

By: Tannus »

Why will you never get a flat if you put Tannus tires on your bike? Because Tannus tires don't got no air inside. Move over, Spandex. You've had a good run, but Micro Closed Cell Polymer Resin's about to dethrone you...