Project image
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$9,100
pledged of $100,000pledged of $100,000 goal
30
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Fri, June 29 2018 1:14 PM UTC +00:00
$9,100
pledged of $100,000pledged of $100,000 goal
30
backers
Funding Unsuccessful
The project's funding goal was not reached on Fri, June 29 2018 1:14 PM UTC +00:00

What is a prototype?

A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:

Proof of Concept

Explorations that test ideas and functionality.

Functional Prototype

Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.

Appearance Prototype

Looks like the final product, but is not functional.

Design Prototype

Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.

Production Prototype

Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.

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Prototype Gallery

These photos and videos provide a detailed look at this project’s development.

About

 Pump Action Cycling is a novel way to propel your bike, making it operate more efficiently, allowing you to tackle hills with less energy. It's a simple device that can be installed on a bike you already own and will help you go further and higher, without getting as tired.

Traditional bikes use a rotary crank to turn the chain and the wheels. A rotary crank is not efficient, having two “dead-zones” where little-to-no force is transmitted from your legs to the wheels. Pump action cycling, in contrast, always operates in the effective-zone of good turning-force transmission.

More on that science here.

You come to a hill. Time to change gears. Time to take a deep breath. Time to feel a burning sensation and the sweat drip down your neck. So much for a nice ride to work! Your inefficient bike is tiring you out, even though it was so easy to bike on flat ground. Why is that? When the going is easy, we're using slow twitch muscle fibers to pedal. Once we hit a hill, we start using a different set of muscles to turn the pedals. 

 Huh? 

 Let us explain. Check out this video:

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Recap:  

Essentially, when you are biking on a flat, easy surface, your legs are using slow twitch muscles fibers to pedal. These muscle fibers don't require much glucose - fuel - to operate. But on a hill, the only way to handle the challenge is to use fast twitch muscle fibers. Fast twitch fibers are more powerful, but burn through glucose. When we use them, you get out of breath and end up with an unpleasant burning sensation in your muscles. Not only have you burned through tons of fuel, you created lactic acid as a by-product. 

Ouch!  

But don't worry - with RRAD crankset replacement kit you've got the Pump Action advantage.

Once you upgrade your bike with the RRAD crankset replacement kit, pump action cycling allows you to continue using slow twitch fibers even on a hill. The pump action motion it enables is optimized to match your body's most efficient muscle usage. Even on a hill, you can keep going as if on flat ground.  

And then you can make it into your morning meeting without pitstains and wobbly legs.

The RRAD crankset replacement kit drive uses patented magnetically hinged overrunning clutches to avoid the "dead zone" inherent in cranks. It's a small device that can be installed on a bike you already own, transforming it into a machine that's can tackle hills and take you further.

An in-depth video for the science nerds:
Early proof of concept test piece
Early proof of concept test piece

The video below shows Pump Action Cycling in Action on a functional prototype. This prototype Rosser Reciprocating Action Device (RRAD) was 3-D printed and retrofitted to an existing bicycle. The final, production version will be manufactured using aircraft grade aluminum.

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18 months of prototypes!
18 months of prototypes!
Roy in his Princeton workshop
Roy in his Princeton workshop

Roy Rosser is an accomplished inventor, experimental physicist and entrepreneur who grew up in Zimbabwe (then Southern Rhodesia), where he cycled through the veldt to school from an early age. In the early 80s, while earning a PhD in Physics at Imperial College, England, he bicycled to university through the London traffic - and survived! This included a nightly long trek home up the notorious Putney Hill.  

In 1990, then at the Princeton Plasma Physics Lab, Roy filed patent applications on real-time virtual insertion of realistic images into television, thinking that the technology would be used to seamlessly and tastefully merge billboard advertising into sporting events, avoiding the need for game interrupting interstitial advertising. He later co-found the company that successfully developed the technology that is now used to implement the virtual first down line on broadcast football, and which was awarded a technical Emmy in 2000. After that, Roy began supporting his invention habit as an independent patent agent. Aging made him realize that even the relatively small hills around Princeton would be more enjoyable with an improved drive train – hence pump action cycling and RRAD. 

Now Roy is dedicated to perfecting these RRAD crank action replacement kits - and sharing pump action cycling with the world.

During prototyping, there has been interest in applying the RRAD technology to other related technologies, including e-bikes and leg actuated wheel chairs. Making e-bikes more efficient is an obvious extension. Leg assisted wheel chairs? Well - not the contradiction it seems. They exist, and are used, for instance, by veterans, recovering from injuries, who want to avoid leg muscle atrophy by exercising them as early as possible. Pump action is much easier than crank action when mobility is limited. There have been encouraging discussions with several universities, including Imperial College, London, and Princeton University, NJ, regarding how to engage their resource in such projects. Their attitude is “This is exciting and important work that you are engaged with!” – but bureaucracies take time. Supporting this Kickstarter could speed things up.

Risks and challenges

The biggest risk when creating a new product is manufacturing. The RRAD has been tested rigorously and works. Making a bunch of them is indeed a challenge.

To ensure the process succeeds as smoothly as possible, we have begun working with one of New Jersey’s premier prototyping and engineering companies. They have over 20 years of experience creating precision engineered, cost effectively manufactured, solutions for a wide range of industrial, medical and defense clients. They, and their extensive supply chain, will guide us to the most effective way to produce both the light weight RRAD Street and the rugged, aircraft grade aluminum, RRAD Off-road crankset replacement kits for pump action cycling.

In addition, Roy brings the experience of having successfully developed a concept, starting with a mere idea, through being a startup company to finally becoming an industry standard.

To help manage communication and the successful delivery of the rewards to the backers, we have assembled a team of with 6 years of experience running crowdfunding campaigns in a wide variety of fields. In addition, we've all backed campaigns before. We know exactly what it feels like to join a campaign and miss out on the reward. We aren't going to let that happen to our backers. You guys are the reason we're doing this at all.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 25 or more About US$ 25

    RRAD Water bottle

    Aluminum, light-weight, RRAD emblazoned water bottle and email project updates.

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    9 backers
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 250 or more About US$ 250

    RRAD Street

    Street version of the RRAD kit – using light weight nylon components where appropriate.

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    5 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 499 or more About US$ 499

    RRAD Offroad

    Off-road version of the RRAD kit - all aircraft grad aluminum construction for rugged, all terrain use.

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    5 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge US$ 999 or more About US$ 999

    Keys to the Kingdom

    Digital blue prints of the RRAD kit designs - including the off-road version - with a personal, experimental and non-commercial license so you can make your own version of the device. Perfect for e-bike manufacturers!

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    3 backers
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Funding period

- (30 days)