Machinist and bike builder Mark Atkinson thinks there is a lot of scope for spectacular designs when it comes to electric motorcycles. So he built a crazy looking bike to prove it.
Say hello to the Racer-X, a bike that Bruce Wayne himself would dismiss as looking just a little bit too out there. While the design may be absolutely nuts, the bike itself is as bare bones and undiluted as they come. There’s just a throttle and one brake lever. No clutch, no rear brake pedal, no gears.
Talking to Bikeexif, Mark said:
“I drew an X on a napkin. The pivot point didn’t work in the centre, so it got moved as far forward as possible. The steering took some thought. My friend Tom Burkland said that if I used two pivots per attachment point, it would work. I did, and it did.”
As impressive as the bike looks, the steering mechanism is perhaps even more impressive. The handlebars are connected to the aluminium frame, so you can’t just move the bars to turn the front wheel. Instead, there is a steering box controlled by a servomotor via Arduino open source software. To move the front wheel there’s a small joystick on the left handlebar. It’s a great feat of engineering, and I don’t completely understand it, but I like it.
The Racer-X does pose a serious and interesting question. Just why do electric bikes look like conventional motorbikes? They don’t need a fuel tank for a start, so why not make them look as interesting as possible?
Having said all that, the moment I saw the Racer-X, my mind thought of one thing, and one thing only.
Yep, an Extra service station. And I can’t unsee it.