Bicycles

The Bicymple is the bicycle simplified, literally

The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
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The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
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The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
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The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes 'crab-riding' a possibility
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The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes 'crab-riding' a possibility
The Bicymple looks to bring fun rather than functionality back to cycling
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The Bicymple looks to bring fun rather than functionality back to cycling
The Bicymple is ridden as any ordinary bike would be, but with higher maneuverability
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The Bicymple is ridden as any ordinary bike would be, but with higher maneuverability
The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility
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The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility
The Bicymple is compact and easy to maintain
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The Bicymple is compact and easy to maintain
The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility
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The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility
The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
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The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
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The Bicymple resembles a unicycle with a front wheel and handlebars attached for stability
The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes 'crab-riding' a possibility
11/16
The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes 'crab-riding' a possibility
The Bicymple looks to bring fun rather than functionality back to cycling
12/16
The Bicymple looks to bring fun rather than functionality back to cycling
The Bicymple is ridden as any ordinary bike would be, but with higher maneuverability
13/16
The Bicymple is ridden as any ordinary bike would be, but with higher maneuverability
The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility
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The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility
The Bicymple is compact and easy to maintain
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The Bicymple is compact and easy to maintain
The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility
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The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility

We recently featured the Fliz bike concept, which saw riders hanging from the frame of the bike and scooting along, rather than sitting astride the bike and pedaling as they do with conventional bicycles. This was an attempt to evolve the basic bike format, and the designers of Fliz aren't alone in their efforts. The Bicymple is, as its name suggests, an attempt to present the bicycle, simplified. And it's an ambition that, on first glance, looks to have been fulfilled.

Bicycle design is fairly static at the moment, and has been for some time. There are, and always will be, innovations in terms of the technologies and materials used, but the basic layout of a tubular frame sitting in between two wheels, with a chain connecting the back wheel to cranks, is the accepted standard. The reason being because it works, offering ergonomic comfort and a geared system of motion. However, just because something ain't broke doesn't mean designers can't experiment with new forms for the humble bicycle.

The Bicymple is different from standard bikes in one very obvious way: the pedals are located on the back wheel, offering direct drive rather than achieving motion by way of a chain and gears. In this way, the Bicymple resembles a unicycle, but with the addition of a front wheel, a frame, and handlebars.

The Bicymple is compact and easy to maintain
The Bicymple is compact and easy to maintain

Every aspect of the Bicymple follows the minimalist edict. The CroMo steel frame is just two bars running above and between the two wheels, with the forks sitting diagonally so there is just a small gap between the 29-inch front and rear wheels.

This innovative urban vehicle is the brainchild of Josh Bechtel of Scalyfish Designs, based in Washington, USA. The concept began with the question, "Is it possible to evolve from the established bicycle design while adhering to the basic principles of simplicity, functionality, style, and excitement?"

It could be argued that this is actually an example of devolving the design, and the functionality of a single-speed bike only goes so far. But the Bicymple is certainly both stylish and exciting. The latter achieved by offering a rear-steering option that offers the possibility of "crab-riding" (as demonstrated in the video embedded below) and a higher maneuverability than is possible with run-of-the-mill bicycles.

The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility
The Bicymple offers a rear-steering option which makes "crab-riding" a possibility

The Bicymple manages to be lightweight and sturdy, and, perhaps most importantly, fun. It should also be very easy to maintain thanks to the lack of Dérailleur gears. Unfortunately the Bicymple is just a concept at the time of writing, but thanks to considerable interest already having been shown, Scalyfish is "currently exploring options for larger scale production and distribution."

If the price is kept low enough for this to be affordable as a fun alternative rather than as a primary mode of transport then the Bicymple could be an exciting prospect.

Source: Bicymple via NOTCOT

bicymple. the bicycle, simplified.

31 comments
DixonAgee
Just what the world needs; a unicycle with a training wheel. Not! Direct drive was found to be impractical long, long ago.
Lawrence Smallman
But what about going up hill ... wouldn't that be a bigger strain on the knees?
TheSplund
My first thought was Wow! a two wheeled unicycle (and the sort of thing that's actually quite easy to build if you have a workshop) for the likes of us that can't ride a one wheeled one, but watching more of the video makes me realise it's far from it - it's rather cool. The freewheel/hub rather neat. Second thought was: how much flex is in that frame/fork setup and could the wheels touch if hitting a kerb/rock/pothole? A freewheel-less version might find favour with the fixie fraternity.
Frank van Schie
Front axle is in line with the fork, meaning virtually no stability (although granted, most mountain bikes and racing bikes don't have great stability either, but still better than this), and since the pedals are behind the seat, your full weight is carried by your testicles/prostate. Thanks, but I'll pass.
Cora Muis
Ow! I ride a recumbent. Putting the pedals even further back than on a regular DF bike will just make your 'bottom end' even more uncomfortable, as well as your hands, wrists, neck, shoulders, etc., etc. Enjoy! (she said sarcastically)
Daishi
I like the concept but I am not sure what rear wheel steering adds to the design. It seems like it is more of an artifact of the parts used to build it (ie, 2 front forks with the rear handlebars replaced with a seat post). A fixed rear wheel seems like it would be more stable.
Joe Acerbic
This is truly the bike of the future: it could make a whole episode of "Ow My Balls!" all on its own on The Violence Channel in 2505.
nehopsa
...what about internal gearing for the rear hub? You should have simple, elegant...and still practical machine. Is there anything - a law of physics - that would forbid that? If not...why not??
Steve Dahlheimer
So it's an Inner City Bike with a rear fork http://www.innercitybikes.com/bikes/
Paul Gracey
This is a step backwards in bicycle development and just as simple and wrong as it's 19th century predecessor the "bone shaker". its a bit more able to avoid forward 'endos' but will slide out forward with enough pedal pressure. The short wheelbase handling is probably atrocious. While 'fixies' are all the rage today this design is just bad, and slow. A circus bike at best.
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