Bike chains can be a hassle … they have to be cleaned and lubricated, yet still manage to get anything that they touch dirty. Using a belt drive, "strings" or even an alternator are all alternatives, but Venice, Florida-based inventor Sean Chan has come up with another. He calls it the Chainless Bike.
Looking not unlike Bygen's Hank Direct Bike, it features a riding position in which the cyclist doesn't sit in the middle of the bike, but is instead perched over its back wheel.
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The cranks are located on that wheel, which also contains an internal gearing system – so it's not like pedalling a penny farthing, in which one pedal revolution equals one wheel revolution. Additionally, the rider of the Chainless Bike is able to stop pedalling and just coast for a while.
Another interesting feature is the Rapid Turning System, which (when activated) allows the bike's rear wheel to pivot relative to the frame – just like the front wheel does on normal bikes. This makes sharp turns possible, along with various other weirdness, which can be seen in the video below.
The bike is being made in both regular and folding versions, and is currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign. Pledge levels begin at US$799, while the estimated retail pricing should start at $1,000.