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.

Comparison Drawings: Morph4 vs Morph 2 Do the Numbers Match Up? Yes.

Before we go into detailed design for the actual Morph 4 prototype, I asked Alan to check the key dimensions of Morph 4 against those for Morph 2. Everything looks good in the drawing above.

Trail in Low Rider: 2.5" (okay, a bit more trail than Morph 2's 1.3")
Trail in High Rider: -1.3" (same as Morph 2)

Wheelbase High Rider: 42.46 inches (1/2" more than Morph 2)
Wheelbase Low Rider: 59.37 inches (3/4" more than Morph 2)

Height to seat joint, low rider: 9.83 inches vs 12.03 Morph 2
Height to seat joint, high rider: 23.67 inches (.4 inches higher than Morph 2)
Seat height delta: 13.84 inches (2.63 more than Morph 2...very important for low CG in low rider)
Eye height delta: 16.21 inches (extra is due to change in seat back tilt?)

These are the measurements for Morph 2. Note that Morph 2 doesn't have the automatic seat adjustment system, and that it doesn't come down as far.

All of these dimensions and angles look good. Nice drawings, Alan. Very clear and simple.

PDF: Morph 4 Dimensions Compared to Morph 2

[From Alan Ball: January 12, 2010]

A while ago you requested some orthographic views with key dimensions called out for the M4. Check out the drawing I have attached here. Is this what you had in mind?

For comparison , I have included a drawing of the M2 geometry, which I documented in CAD and was measured and confirmed against M2. As you can see, the basic dimensions are almost the same, with differences occurring due to M4 greater range of morphing motion.