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The Pedal-A-Watt Stationary Bike Power Generator: create energy and get fit

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November 24, 2009

The Pedal-A-Watt and, inset, connected to a bike and voltmeter to show how much power is b...

The Pedal-A-Watt and, inset, connected to a bike and voltmeter to show how much power is being generated

As people the world over continue to search for renewable energy sources, innovative and interesting ideas for generating power are constantly being devised. Those interested in keeping fit and producing power at the same time might be interested in this unique product – the Pedal-A-Watt. It converts your bicycle into a stationary bike and uses your pedal power to generate energy that can be stored in a power pack. An average rider can produce up to 200 watts – ride for an hour and you'll generate enough to power a 25 watt fluorescent light bulb for eight hours.

So how does it work? It’s not unlike the River gym concept - you simply attach your bicycle to the Pedal-A-Watt stand and start pedaling. The stand contains a generator which is spun by the movement of the bicycle’s back wheel. The generator is made of a spinning magnet within a coil of wire, as the magnet spins, electricity flows through the coil. The energy you generate can be used straight away or can be stored in a battery in the power pack for use later. The bicycle can be clipped into the stand in less than 30 seconds without having to remove the rear tire, and if you want to do some road riding you simply pop your bike out of the stand. Too easy.

How much pedaling will you need to do to charge average household appliances? If you pedal for two hours then you should produce around 400 watt-hours of power. That's enough to power a 200 watt television for two hours, or a 100 watt light bulb for four hours. A 20 watt laptop PC could be charged for 20 hours and a 15 watt fluorescent bulb for almost 27 hours.

An average adult rider could produce from 100 to 320 watts of power depending on their physical strength, stronger and fitter adults could create between 225 to 320 watts or more. The stand is best suited to bicycles in reasonable condition with 26 or 27 inch wheels, but can also work with wheels greater than 10 inches. It weighs 23 lbs and optional extras such as the cigarette lighter plug and 12 foot cable are also available.

The Pedal-A-Watt package has a lifetime warranty and can be purchased for US$399. That includes the bicycle stand, generator, 20 amp blocking diode, adjustment knob and instructions. The power pack is sold separately for US$365.95 and is suitable for household appliances up to 400 watts.

Via Convergence Tech

7 Comments

Funny that, we built a similar set-up for our college open day. :D

Same frame and everything!

http://www.flickr.com/photos/energylabdcu/4130568629/

Shiny
25th November, 2009 @ 02:49 am PST

Who comes up with this stuff?

@ $399 for the unit, I would have to pedal 2 hours a day for 30 YEARS for this to make financial sense.

Bicycling magazine did an interesting write-up of how similar units actually make sense for gyms, where they are in use for many hours each day, but for a normal person, this is absolutely useless.

Shang
25th November, 2009 @ 04:57 pm PST

@shang:

Consider those that pay over a thousand for a non-electricity-generating stationary bike, and this thing makes all kinds of sense.

Dan K

Dan K
2nd December, 2009 @ 03:02 pm PST

strip it down from a wheel stand to a self contained pedal to gen unit. take 10 units, mount them on a chassis and have 10 cyclists onbord. enclose. commute..whoever supplied the least power to the bommute gets to buy drinks after work.

waltinseattle
14th February, 2010 @ 05:37 pm PST

waltinseattle, I like your idea. I had a similar one, using your system as a public transport machine. The more you pedal, the cheaper the fare. By the way, don't bother with the generator and motor. Just connect directly to the drive wheels, using a suitable link up between each pedaller. May be a flywheel could be employed, although that would be extra weight. Regarding the original article, I think criminals in prison should be made to generate electicity, if only to power the prison, and save taxpayers money. By the way, did you hear the news the other day? Prisoners complained that they were being charged £1 per week each, to rent TVs in their cells. They won their case, and now only pay £1 per cell if they share with others. It's good, isn't it?

windykites1
15th February, 2010 @ 08:35 am PST

Actually this idea is being implemented in a City Jail here in the Philippines where the prisoners have mandatory time on a stationary bike to recharge a battery that will power their light bulbs at night. They take turns in doing this, that story can be found here http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/inquirerheadlines/metro/view/20100619-276504/Jail-guards-invention-saves-on-power and it has some photos if you want to see ;)

Anyway, they are using an ordinary outdoor bicycle, I think it won't last in the long run. Wouldn't it be a greater idea if they purchased used stationary bikes instead to cut down on the cost (as some are complaining here) instead of buying a new one? I wonder which stationary bike will have a better output, the recumbent one or the stationary bikes (for those who doesn't know the difference visit this site http://www.dogengine.com/used-stationary-bikes.php they have pictures there of different types of stationary bikes), since the recumbent is more relaxed, I personally believe people would have more time using it than the upright ones.

Let us not also forget that the actual equipment is a "fitness" equipment. The power it produces using this method is just something we don't want to waste, we are just maximizing its use ;)

shockware
12th August, 2010 @ 12:46 am PDT

Delightfully Seussian, 10 bommuting Seattlites. Like power-generating turnstiles, revolving doors, and sidewalks. Brilliant. Has anyone come up with a way to collect the energy from a spinning clothes dryer to power a washer? or the lights...Do you know?

Liz Kirchner
6th December, 2013 @ 02:50 pm PST
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