Design and Fabrication of Foldable Bicycle – Mechanical Project
In the present day lifestyle man is not able to dedicate specific time for his health, importance is least given to exercise and body fitness due to time shortage and stressful life. To cope with time deficit, we can utilize the time spent on commuting efficiently to exercise by using bicycles, thereby also contributing to pollution control. But regular bicycles occupy sufficient space to park, are not easy to carry around and are probable to theft. Transport has been one of the most important issues to be dealt with in the present day situation as commuting from place to place within the city has become a tedious and an expensive task. It is very difficult to reach the nearest public transport facility and in many cases the destination will be very far from the main roads where the public transport might not be able to commute or it might be very expensive. To overcome a common problem faced by the society, an idea is conceptualized to design and fabricate a foldable bicycle. We already have seen many foldable bicycles in the global market but the main idea of this project is to provide a foldable bicycle which is light & sleek yet rigid & safe, easy to handle and easy to maintain. Unlike the conventional cycles, this bicycle will occupy very less space and also is very easy to be carried around. The main objective is to design and develop a foldable bicycle which is comfortable to ride and economical.
In the present day lifestyle man is not able to dedicate specific time for his health, importance is least given to exercise and body fitness due to time shortage and stressful life. Obesity is one of the common issues seen in the society, which leads to many health hazards. Exercises are advised for health promotion, and treatment for many diseases. Among the exercises aerobic exercises are appropriate for these purposes. To do aerobic exercise many methods are available for example: running, jogging, walking, cycling and others.
Transport has been one of the major issues in developing cities such as Bangalore since commuting from one place to another has become tedious and expensive. With the petrol and diesel prices increasing day by day, almost all the modes of transport are becoming expensive. It is difficult to reach the nearest public transport facility and in many cases the destination will be far from the main roads where the public transport might not be able to reach due to the small roads, to avoid which most people use vehicles of their own, which in turn leads to issues with parking, traffic, etc. But not all can opt for having own vehicles as it is expensive. With such issues in health, transport, space for parking, etc. one solution that comes to mind is bicycle. Bicycles are being promoted in the corporate and educational sectors. But how convenient is it to use a conventional bicycle?
In many cases there is no special facility provided for locking the bicycles and even if one is present, it is probable to theft, which is one of the fears that obstruct use of bicycle. Conventional bicycles occupy sufficient space and hence providing one at work place or at home are quite difficult. They are probable to be exposed to the weather outside and do require frequent maintenance. With all such issues in the conventional bicycles, the next possible solution is the usage of foldable bicycle. With foldable bicycles, there is no issue since the bicycle can be folded and carried around to the work place or even it can be used to reach the nearest public transport facility and then folded and carried along. Since the bicycle is being folded, it occupies very less space and doesn’t require any special parking space. They are not exposed to the weather since they can be carried inside buildings with ease and hence prone to less maintenance. The usage of foldable bicycle helps combine the different modes of transport as mentioned above, which helps in cutting down some cost involved in travelling.
The hinge being a very important member of the frame required utmost attention. The hinge is the load bearing member. After a long survey of the existing hinge mechanisms used in the foldable bicycles, it was found that most of the bicycles used similar kind of hinge and locking mechanism. The mechanism used was simple, but manufacturing something similar with available resources turned out to be expensive. But the hinge mechanism or the simplest hinge mechanism used in Brompton bicycle caught our interest. This mechanism was very simple and used a screw and spring loaded mechanism to lock the hinge. The design was simple yet strong and chances of failure is minimal.
- The design of the foldable bicycle was based on the standard data available. The fabrication was done using locally available materials.
Compared to the foldable bicycles existing in the market, our bicycle is economical and occupies less space. The weight of our bicycle is with par with light weight bicycles available in the market, though the material used for fabrication is mild steel.
- The bicycle has adjustable seat and handle positions enabling both children and adults to use the same bicycle.
- Though the bicycle is foldable, sleek and having small wheels, complete justice is done to the ergonomics of the rider hence making it comfortable.
- The idea of providing a foldable bicycle which is light & sleek yet rigid & safe, easy to handle and easy to maintain has been met.
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