Whether you're tackling mountain trails or just trying to get through Manhattan's Chinatown, rough terrain can put your bike's tubes at serious risk. It's not usually an option to hop off and adjust your tire pressure, but a company called Adaptrac has a system that mounts a toggle right on your handlebars and allows you to raise or lower your pressure even while riding.
The Adaptrac system is essentially a CO2 cartridge of varying sizes that straps to your downtube, where you'd mount a water bottle. It comes with replacement hubs of its own, and plugs into both front and rear tires. Controls--the toggle for adding/reducing pressure, as well as a pair of analog pressure gauges--are mounted on the handlebars. Assuming it all works--and there's a lot of engineering trickiness going on here, to make sure everything stays connected and rotating properly--you'd be able to individually adjust tire pressure while riding.
That could definitely come in handy--Adaptrac notes that you could decrease the pressure for more traction on a downhill coast, and then increase it upon the next climb for an easier ride. It'd probably match nicely with a powered gear-set.
No word on pricing or availability yet, as it's still in the prototype stage, but that should come fairly soon.
Engineering trickiness? Is this an ad or is this a magazine that explains how things work? Explain how you make a light rotating air seal rated for 100 psi + delta differential pressure with low maintenance and high speed.
This article does nothing and explains nothing.
I have lots of vapor ware ideas if you are looking for fluff to print.
How about something that uses the energy from pedaling to inflate instead of CO2. Also, the comment above by nonsquid raises a good point.
Traditionally, I always thought one of the most beautiful things of a bicycle, is its simplicity. This seems like an unnecessary complication.
"RIDE YOU BIKE; HAVE FUN!"
Science sees no further than what it can sense, i.e. facts.
Religion sees beyond the senses, i.e. faith.
Open your mind and see!
1. Didn't PopSci have an article in the recent past about self-inflating tires? They have small tube-shaped section that goes the circumference of the tire. The pressure of the road squeezes the tube and inflates the tire. No CO2 required.
2. Why would you EVER want to deflate your bike tires? If you're legs weren't tired enough, maybe?
Really, I would love to know how they plan on having a hose from your down tube, permanently fixed to inflate your tires which doesn't get in the way of the rotating tire or snag on the fame. The hose would have to adjust for the entire stretch when the valve is at the ground and then shrink again when the valve is at the top just inches from the down tube.
Sounds like one more unnecessary attachment for a bike. Oh and, there is no benefit to ever decreasing your tire pressure....unless you incompetent and cant bike downhill...in which case u shouldn't be biking anyway.
I am the inventor of the Adaptrac(TM) system and do realize many of the technical specifics were left out of the press releases, as they are meant to introduce the product to the broad population and not just to us tech junkies. As to the design specifics, these special active seals do indeed exist, are easily replaceable and have been tested for over 320 continuous and random intervals with no more than 1 psi loss per hour from 20-60 psi. Without modern material science, these seals would not have been possible to produce. The mechanical design is very simple. This is simply the application of a rotary joint (commonly used in hose reels)to the center of a bicycle hub. Only with the recent advent of the large, tubular thru axle used in high end mountain bikes, was I able to convey the gas to the center of the rotating hub. Thank you for your curiosity and lively discussion around our product.
I just seen the specs and the hardware. What a mess. And I find it hard to believe those air seals don't impart as much drag as over tightened bearings. The wheels will have to be balanced for any downhillers cause the hose from the hub to the rim is massive. Not to mention all the hardware looks like it adds a ton of weight. For the weight of the hose from the hub to the rim, one would be better off designing bluetooth purge/pressure valve with a CO2 cartridge attached directly on it using a small bluetooth controller on the handlebars.