Thursday, August 27, 2015

The De-Flopillator and a Cool Electric Cargobike (Radwagon)

Trying to cut back on your car usage? Here's a cool option.

As part of my personal carbon reduction goals, I've been crushing on longtail cargobikes for a while now. I've drooled over Yubas, Xtracycles, Surlys and many others. These are some very cool machines, but the non-electric versions of these definitely hang out on the edge of my financial means. I like the longtail and the midtail bikes because they retain a lot of their fundamental bike-ishness. You get to ride it, lean it, and park it like a normal bike, and it still fits through skinny-ish places. However, you can still use one to haul the kids, your sweetie, the groceries, or 100 pounds of manure (to use in your personal-carbon-reduction garden). I have to admit, I like bakfeits and cycletrucks too, but not as much as the longtails.

A TreeHugger article about a short longtail or a long midtail cargo bike, the RadWagon, popped up yesterday. The article shows a very appealing electric cargo bike that costs about what you'd pay for some of the non-electric versions, and it links to an Electric Bike Report video (which mentions the De-Flopillator).  The video covers the bike in great detail. (And snagit!) it has me dreaming.

For me, the best part of driving my little pickup (Lucy) is having the ability to make things happen quickly. If I am trucking down a street and see some really appealing thing sitting on the curb with a "free" sign on it, I pull over and load it up. Keith and Grizz are still upset that I did not load up those three free mannequins that I did not snag while riding by on my bike. (But I think their marriages are better off this way.) When I think about a cargo bike I also think about the number of times I ride my by bike home to get the truck so I can buy groceries and of the days when I don't ride the bike because I have to pick up 44 pounds of dog food on my way home. Yep, having a cargo bike with electric assist could go a long way to lowering my personal carbon production. And my eco-dork cred could go through the roof, which is more important in my self image than I'd like to admit.

So here's this really impressive $1700 bike out there ($1400 if you act now) and it's haunting me a bit. How many needs could be covered with this one machine?  What could this machine do for my carbon reduction goals? How much of a fair-weather biker am I? Would the orange paint clash with my green ideals? Would I have made a different choice on the mannequins if I'd been on the RadWagon?

May you be dreaming of or haunted by ways to make carbon reduction improvements.