Morph Design is Done! Ready to Roll at Oct 28 MassTLC unConference

The Morphing Handcycle design is done, and we're building six units. This post uses a CAD model that is close, but not exact to what is being built. The first of the Morphs will be unveiled at the MassTCL unConference on October 28. At the end of this post is a CAD model that you can view in 3d using Solidworks free eDrawings viewer.

The Morph in High Rider mode. This is a screenshot from an earlier design. The red tubular member on the top has been replaced by the milled aluminum part on the new design in the first picture.

(Wheels and seat back hidden) The adjustable lift system lets us handle almost any weight of rider and make them "weightless" so the Morph goes up and down in seconds with no effort. The dual gas shocks give us plenty of lifting power.

Loosen the four bolts that cinch the carriage (in light blue), and then turn lead screw (dark blue) to adjust the mechanical advantage of the gas shocks. Then re-tighten the carriage, and you're ready to ride.

The bolt with the blue dot turns the lead screw that moves the carriage to adjust the lift. We're confident it will work well and look great! (we tested the mechanism but not this specific design)

The Morph in Low Rider mode with a rider. This is the view that comes up from the CAD model below.

Here is the e-Drawings file for the SolidWorks model:  You'll need the free e-Drawings Viewer (for Mac or PC)

Some tricks: you can click on a part of the bike and right-mouse click, the choose Hide, and it will be hidden for easier viewing of other parts.

The hide feature is handy.

Click the blue circular arrows to rotate. Click the green arrows to move from one view to the next.

Comparing the Morph and the Travel Bike - Side View Photos/CAD

The previous posts review the Travel Bike, because it shares many design elements with the Morph. Having just spent the weekend in Newport on the Travel Bike (as I wait for the Morph 4 to be completed!), I wondered if we could use the very cool hinged footrests from the Travel Bike. The short answer: No. The Travel Bike, as compact as it is, is way longer than the Morph in high rider mode. And your legs sit well ahead of the steerer tube, as opposed to behind the steerer tube in the Travel Bike. Too bad. The Travel Bike's footrests are light and functional. Here's some more details.

Side view of the Travel Bike.

I used Keynote's instant alpha feature to grab the CAD Man from the Morph pictures. I scaled both drawing so the front wheel was the same size.

Using the same scaling techniques to see the Morph in Low Rider next to the travel bike. Note that you sit about one full head height lower. The overall length is about the same.

Adding the Morph in high rider, we see how much shorter and higher the bike is, even compared with the (mostly grayed out) Travel bike.

It's interesting to note how much more your leg bends from low rider to high rider. This is because the seat moves up and forward, but the footrest stays in a similar place (it does rotate about the front contact point, I think.)

Like I said, no but you'll see.

The instant alpha took away some of the foot of our CAD Man.

These footrests are hinged at the top of the vertical orange line, and also where the two lines meet. Go off a big curb? The footrest just bends forward, no problem.

Red lines show center line of your shin in both bikes.

I hadn't realized that the seating position relative to the steering axis was that much different. It's a good 16" (size of the front wheel). This keeps the Morph short, which is really crucial for indoor maneuverability.

And there you have it.