Nine people, three bikes, two potted plants

Two Xtracycles with Stokemonkey off the back, one Bakfiets up front.

We made a half-serious effort to emigrate to the Netherlands in 2003, where this kind of scene is too common to merit notice. We settled instead for Portland, where this isn’t all that freakish anymore. We’re doing our little part.

One of the families shown has four kids and two Stokemonkey-equipped bikes. Working on stoking the Bakfiets….

10 thoughts on “Nine people, three bikes, two potted plants”

  • tuco

    Love the video and mentioned it and your site on my blog today. So you looked into Holland eh? I’ve thought about that recently. And Sweden as well, where they’re trying to be off oil by 2015.
    Hope life in Portland is treating you well. Take care.

    Reply
  • miketually

    That’s pretty cool. I’m still trying to convince my wife that we don’t need a car.

    Reply
  • Jonathan Maus

    Looks good Todd. I like how the lady with the trailer is pedaling along so easily even though she’s pulling a good amount of weight.

    It’s too bad that some people think that the kid-on-xtracycle set-up is dangerous. At Walk and Bike day, Sacha White’s kids were like that and I noticed several people cringing and saying “tsssk, tssk, those kids should be restrained.” sheesh.

    Reply
  • Martina

    I wonder what people said, when they saw the first kids in cars around the 19-hundreds?
    At least they can’t die of heat exhaustion…

    Reply
  • Andy Riblet

    “Working on stoking the Bakfietsââ?¬Â¦.”

    I’m interested in this. This is my bike:

    http://people.ucsc.edu/~ariblet/Bikes/Bilenky.jpg

    A Portland shop, Scoot On This, quoted me a system employing a hub motor in the front wheel, but I’d love to be able to drive the rear instead.

    Here’s a profile shot of one:


    http://www.bilenky.com/prod42.html

    I just can’t see a way to get a Stokemonkey motor in there anywhere.

    – Andy in Santa Cruz

    Reply
  • fred

    Andy, I’m a bit biased toward the Stokemonkey, so I applaud your desire to drive the rear wheel (through the gearing) instead of a hub motor. Your photo shows an immense open space ahead of the cranks. I don’t know why you’d have to limit the installation to the aft part of the bike, if you can be sure you won’t strike parts when installed toward the front. My Alligt Alleweder velomobile has a Stokemonkey in the nose, but no part of my body travels forward of the cranks.

    I’m sure Todd can tell you if a front mount will work. I’d never want to do without mine, especially after pulling 120 pounds in a trailer.

    fred in Daytona Beach, FL

    Reply
  • Todd

    Andy, it should indeed be possible to fit a Stokemonkey to that bike, but at the cost of developing an alternate mount, clamping the seat tube and having the motor in front. It’s been done: /blog/cp/markus/ . I’m somewhat reluctant to emphasize this possibility, though, because it will be an untested one-off, as indeed it will be for every other bicycle frame where it’s even possible. Stokemonkey exists as a supported product instead of a DIY hack because Xtracycle’s product is a known quantity around which a good mount could be designed, refined, and produced in quantity. Once you bring arbitrary bike frames into the mix, it gets really hard. Thanks to superlight butted tubesets, some seat tubes will buckle if you overtorque the front derailleur clamp! Try a rather heavy motor at the end of a 7″ lever arm….

    Anyway, I’m committed to developing a mount for the forthcoming Surly Big Dummy, in which a larger diameter, thinner-walled tube must be clamped. Perhaps this process will yield a line of mounts that work with bikes such as yours. And the Bakfiets — that too. Then I’ll spend half my days fending off requests to make Stokemonkey work with plain old diamond frame bikes, and I don’t want to go down that road for a mix of philosophical, ethical, and marketing reasons.

    Reply
  • Andy R

    Todd –

    Everything above makes perfect sense. I really don’t think I want a motor in front in any case, now that I think about it.
    And the Big Dummy is really appealing. All I need is a winning lotto ticket. :)

    Thanks,

    Andy

    Reply
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