Electric bikes are stealing the show from the manual huffing and puffing ones. The ease of traveling has made these bikes very popular. But, many of us can’t afford the exorbitant prices of e-bikes, and some are even contended with the feel of their loyal old bikes. So, what to do if you want a bit of both? Enter the Centinel wheel that can convert any average bike into an electrically powered one!
Although, the concept isn’t new as Copenhagen wheel and FlyKly are also wheels that can be attached in place of a regular back wheel of a bicycle and convert it into an e-bike. Centinel also replaces the rear wheel to propel it with its electric motors. The Omni wheel is different from these as it replaces the front wheel rather than the back wheel. Both have their pros and cons, just like front powered cars and back powered cars.
The first wheel size of Centinel to be manufactured is 26 inches. Since it is an average size, it is likely to get more people interested. Other wheel sizes would be introduced soon. At the heart of the Centinel is a microcontroller and a 13 Ampere Li-ion battery providing power to the twin 180-watt motors. The battery part pops out for recharging. A Bluetooth 4.0 provides connectivity to smartphones and from there, you can select the electrical assistance level that you want while bicycling. So, it is a very nifty feature along with the battery monitoring tool in the app. The Centinel is also able to provide automatic assistance, according to the biker’s cycling pattern.
Hycore is the design firm behind this useful product. The wheel has an electronically limited speed of 16 mph and a range of 30 mph. This is a useful range as bikes aren’t use for longer trips in our everyday lives. Centinel’s range is the same as Copenhagen wheel and Flykly, but in terms of top speed, it provides a speedier option with 20 mph.
The project is undergoing crowd funding at Kickstarter. Initial pledges of 899 $ would be enough to get your hands on the nifty wheel. Shipping is expected in April next year. The Centinel’s price makes it competitive as FlyKly is commands a price of around 1,099 and Copenhagen Wheel is selling at 949 bucks.
Take a look at this incredible wheel’s promotional video by Hycore: