This Week in the Mercury


Friday, September 23, 2011

Bikes with Dog Sidecars, Stereo Systems, and Cell Phone Chargers Debut at Oregon Manifest

Posted by Sarah Mirk on Fri, Sep 23, 2011 at 1:44 PM

This morning, 34 teams from around the country rolled their custom-built bikes into the main hall of Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) for the official start of Oregon Manifest and... holy promised land of designer bike porn! The bikes are fabulous.

The last time Portland held the national bikes-as-transportation design competition, the results were mostly straight-forward (albeit gorgeous) city bikes. This year, the builders have really taken the innovation up a notch. Or, like, six notches. On what notch does "sidecar for dog named Raz" reside?

Bike by Bellingham-based builder Donkelope
  • Bike by Bellingham-based builder Donkelope

The big difference this year is the inclusion of student teams, including designers from University of Oregon, the Art Institute, and a team of sixth and seventh graders from a Newark charter school who teamed up with bike builder Folk Engineering. Their bike includes a wheel-powered USB cell phone charger, explains seventh grader Abdul Nafae Syed.

11-year-old Abdul intently explains the workings of his teams bike
  • 11-year-old Abdul intently explains the workings of his team's bike

"Once this spins, it creates kinetic energy," said the 11-year-old Syed, pointing to the generator that rubs along the back wheel's rim. "There's a switch so that you can either power the light every time you pedal, or plug in your cell phone."

"How did you get into bike building?" I asked the Smartest Kid in AmericaTM.

"I want to be an architect and it's basically architecture featured for practical use by humans. And it's eco-friendly," said Syed.

Watch out, world. Check out the bikes tonight at the Oregon Manifest opening night party from 7-10pm. Tomorrow, the builders have to ride the bikes on a secret 50-mile course. I'll be there, too, and if I don't die along the way, I'll blog the whole thing here so click back to Blogtown tomorrow. I may or may not die. I don't own bike shorts and I never ride more than, oh, 10 miles a day, so this'll be a bit absurd.

H'okay: Onto the dozens of photos of all the other beautiful bikes! We've got cargo bikes, longtails, a pizza bike, sweet racks, a sidecar for art students! They're all below the cut.

Cielo, from the Chris King-friendly team
faraday.JPG
  • Local builder Ira Ryan checks out Faraday's cycle

UPDATE: I didn't even realize that beautiful Faraday is an e-bike! That's wild. Here's what BikePortland says about it.

Boston builder Geekhaus and their crazy milled aluminum fenders
  • Boston builder Geekhaus and their crazy milled aluminum fenders
Ira Ryan again, with his own simple, classic bike.
  • Ira Ryan again, with his own simple, classic bike.
Longtail WHAT from Inglis Cycles
  • Longtail WHAT from Inglis Cycles
PNCAs entry is designed to carry two students...
  • PNCA's entry is designed to carry two students...
Portland builder Littlefords sweet rack (and custom Philosophy bags)
  • Portland builder Littleford's sweet rack (and custom Philosophy bags)
Getting kickstand krazy with Vermont builder Cycles d’Autremont
  • Getting kickstand krazy with Vermont builder Cycles d’Autremont
Judges size up a Quixote cycle
  • Judges size up a Quixote cycle
University of Oregons green-and-white entry, with RISDs cargo bike
  • University of Oregon's green-and-white entry, with RISD's cargo bike
signal.JPG
unknown_2.JPG
Sweet extra-rider saddle from Tsunehiro Cycles and Silas Beebe
  • Sweet extra-rider saddle from Tsunehiro Cycles and Silas Beebe
Whattup wooden cargo bike
  • Whattup wooden cargo bike
wooden_2.JPG
Um... Is this ZIBA-designed bike locked with a rope? Nope, thats a rope wrapped around a chain, meant to evoke an explorer tying up his horse.
  • Um... Is this ZIBA-designed bike locked with a rope? Nope, that's a rope wrapped around a chain, meant to evoke "an explorer tying up his horse."
It also has a sidecar, of course.
  • It also has a sidecar, of course.

Want a hot pink bike with built-in lock and sound system? Tony Pereira has you covered.
  • Want a hot pink bike with built-in lock and sound system? Tony Pereira has you covered.
Tonys is an electric assist bike and weighs a ton. Its sweat-free transportation, he says. Its intended buyer is someone who doesnt like to show up at meetings looking like theyve just been to the gym.
  • Tony's is an electric assist bike and weighs a ton. "It's sweat-free transportation," he says. It's intended buyer is someone who doesn't like to show up at meetings looking like they've just been to the gym.
yellow_bike.JPG
sizemore.JPG
  • Sizemore bikes - not like Bill Sizemore.

HUBs pizza and beer bike: Delicious, but not in the competition.
  • HUB's pizza and beer bike: Delicious, but not in the competition.

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