Go Back   EcoModder Forum > AltModding > Saving@Home
Register Now
 Register Now

Now available from EcoModder: ScanGauge II fuel economy gauge.  Click for details.  


Reply  Post New Thread
 
Submit Tools LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 07-29-2008, 04:36 PM   #1 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Glassboro, NJ
Posts: 88

Kawi - '04 Kawasaki Vulcan 800 Classic
90 day: 56.48 mpg (US)

The Monte - '99 Chevrolet Monte Carlo Z34
90 day: 26.52 mpg (US)

Mazda - '10 Mazda 3i
90 day: 35.15 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Using a stationary bike to make electricity

Has anyone heard of any ideas on how to convert a stationary bike to be able to produce electricity to feed into the grid? I understand the concept of how solar power is fed into the grid, put what about a bike? I know I wouldn't produce too much energy, but some is better than none. I'm going to use the bike anyway might as well get something out of it if I can.

__________________
Goal one= 30mpg on The Monte by changing the nut that connects the steering wheel to the seat.

  Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2008, 05:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
Green Rodder
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: maywood, new jersey
Posts: 28

Grease Beast - '92 Dodge D250 Standard

Econo-Beater DX - '92 Toyota Corolla DX
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
You would still need an inverter (think solar/wind) to feed it back to the grid so figure a grand plus to install that.....


Human Power Generator -- Generate electricity yourself

Human Power Generator.The Pedal-A-Watt Stationary Bicycle Generator.

Human Power Trainer -- Windstream Power

Bicycle experiment
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2008, 07:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
EcoModding Apprentice
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: South Dakota
Posts: 117

GMC Sonoma - '94 GMC Sonoma
90 day: 36.97 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by saunders1313 View Post
Has anyone heard of any ideas on how to convert a stationary bike to be able to produce electricity to feed into the grid? I understand the concept of how solar power is fed into the grid, put what about a bike? I know I wouldn't produce too much energy, but some is better than none. I'm going to use the bike anyway might as well get something out of it if I can.
I ride a stationary bike whenever weather won't allow me to ride the real deal. I thought of configuring the bike to generate power to watch TV while pedaling. So I did math and finally concluded that it would never pay for itself. The electrical power that I could produce would be on the order of a penny a day, or not even that much.

The place that a generator on a stationary bike makes sense is if you have no electrical power, i.e. in your cabin in the hills. Or if you want to power a TV or stereo and use them as your incentive to do the exercise.

Consider that 1 horse power is 740 watts (or there abouts). That is 3/4 of a KW. If you can pedal at a rate of 1 HP for 1 hr. (you cannot) you could produce maybe 7 cents worth of electricity (@ $.10/KWH) if your machine were 100% efficient (it would not be).

Realistically you might produce 1/4 that much power if you are in really good shape. Your equipment and the transfer from pedal to electricity and then through the circuitry required to change it to 60Hz AC is probably gonna be 50% efficient at best. You are now looking at 1/8 of 7 cents for an hour of very hard pedaling. Not even a penny an hour.

Even if your equipment cost you a mere $100 it would take 10,000 hours of pedaling to break even. In that many hours your equipment would probably need replacement. You would never break even. In fact, my guess is that it would be a considerable net loss.
  Reply With Quote
The Following User Says Thank You to Gregte For This Useful Post:
jtbo (06-04-2012)
Old 07-30-2008, 01:18 AM   #4 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Ryland's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Western Wisconsin
Posts: 3,820

honda cb125 - '74 Honda CB 125 S1
90 day: 79.71 mpg (US)

green wedge - '81 Commuter Vehicles Inc. Commuti-Car

Blue VX - '93 Honda Civic VX
Thanks: 804
Thanked 396 Times in 328 Posts
From what I have seen an adult in decent shape can put out around 75-100 watts of usable electricity on a bicycle with a generator on it, if you built it I would say that you should use a synconise motor as a generator and gear it so that motor starts to generate when you are pedaling around 70 RPM as that is a nice pace, then have a switch that doesn't make a connection until you hit that speed, this would do away with an inverter and everything else making it really simple.
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2008, 03:00 AM   #5 (permalink)
Pokémoderator
 
cfg83's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Southern California
Posts: 5,863

1999 Saturn SW2 - '99 Saturn SW2 Wagon
Team Saturn
90 day: 40.49 mpg (US)
Thanks: 437
Thanked 509 Times in 342 Posts
saunders1313 -

I have always wanted to power my TeeVee with a bike, but I'm too lazy to get it done.

Wasn't there a post/thread on a fitness center in China that gets it's power from it's members?

CarloSW2
__________________

What's your EPA MPG? Go Here and find out!
American Solar Energy Society
  Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2008, 03:51 AM   #6 (permalink)
What? THIS IS MY GOOD CAR
 
justpassntime's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Eastern Washington
Posts: 285

The Japillac - '87 Honda Accord LXi Sedan
90 day: 31.77 mpg (US)

Ranchero GT - '73 Ford Ranchero GT

Spaz - '83 Chevy S10 4X4 Tahoe
90 day: 27.53 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Send a message via ICQ to justpassntime
Didn't they prove this on Gilligan's Island? Not a new idea then either I would suppose. Didn't early radios (WWII) have hand crank generators?
__________________
Honda...the economical, renewable resource.


  Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2008, 12:57 PM   #7 (permalink)
Mr. Blue Tape
 
azraelswrd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Fresno, CA
Posts: 345

AzxA - '06 Scion xA
90 day: 42.72 mpg (US)
Thanks: 0
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Yes, and they still have hand-crank generators for a lot of emergency devices such as radios, sirens, lights and even a cell-phone charger. (I've got HC lights for my car and house) I'd use the stationary bike just for the exercise. If it could provide enough power for a fan or radio, that's just gravy for the goose.
__________________


My 5 pillars of fuel efficiency:
  • driving style
  • aerodynamics
  • tires
  • weight reduction
  • engine maintenance
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-05-2008, 03:14 PM   #8 (permalink)
EcoModding Apprentice
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Fontana, CA
Posts: 167

Red Egg - '95 Ford Aspire
90 day: 38.51 mpg (US)

Dodge SRT-4 - '04 Dodge Neon SRT-4 2.4L Turbo
90 day: 26.24 mpg (US)
Thanks: 1
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
If this could be done it would be great for all the fat kids and their xbox's. you can play video games all you want if you charge up your battery first. I can then see the fit kids sell themselves to power the lazy ones and profit. Maybe it wouldn't work, this is the US.
__________________
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2010, 06:55 AM   #9 (permalink)
EcoModding Lurker
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Quezon City
Posts: 8
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
The idea of using a stationary bike to generate energy is being done here in the Philippines. In a City Jail to be exact. The inmates are required to use the stationary bikes to charge a battery that powers their lights at night. They do take turns and are required to do this. The article can be seen here Jail guard’s invention saves on power - INQUIRER.net, Philippine News for Filipinos with the photos and all.

Just an idea I wanted to share, since they are using an ordinary outdoor bike I believe it won't last in the long run. Wouldn't it be a great idea if they purchased used stationary bikes (buying a new one costs $$$) and use the recumbent stationary bike instead of the upright stationary bike (for those who doesn't know the difference check this site used stationary bikes it has photos of different kinds of stationary bikes) to maximize the usage of the bike since it is more relaxed. What do you guys think?

Last edited by shockware; 08-18-2010 at 11:27 PM..
  Reply With Quote
Old 08-13-2010, 11:34 AM   #10 (permalink)
Master EcoModder
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Texas
Posts: 632
Thanks: 0
Thanked 25 Times in 23 Posts
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gregte View Post
I ride a stationary bike whenever weather won't allow me to ride the real deal. I thought of configuring the bike to generate power to watch TV while pedaling. So I did math and finally concluded that it would never pay for itself. The electrical power that I could produce would be on the order of a penny a day, or not even that much.

The place that a generator on a stationary bike makes sense is if you have no electrical power, i.e. in your cabin in the hills. Or if you want to power a TV or stereo and use them as your incentive to do the exercise.

Consider that 1 horse power is 740 watts (or there abouts). That is 3/4 of a KW. If you can pedal at a rate of 1 HP for 1 hr. (you cannot) you could produce maybe 7 cents worth of electricity (@ $.10/KWH) if your machine were 100% efficient (it would not be).

Realistically you might produce 1/4 that much power if you are in really good shape. Your equipment and the transfer from pedal to electricity and then through the circuitry required to change it to 60Hz AC is probably gonna be 50% efficient at best. You are now looking at 1/8 of 7 cents for an hour of very hard pedaling. Not even a penny an hour.

Even if your equipment cost you a mere $100 it would take 10,000 hours of pedaling to break even. In that many hours your equipment would probably need replacement. You would never break even. In fact, my guess is that it would be a considerable net loss.
You forgot to factor in the fact that being as skinny as Tiffany Yep would improve your MPG and that during the winter, you'll stay warm and save a lot of energy by reducing heater use. (Conversely, during the summer, it would increase A/C use and not be worth it, unless it's evaporative or hybrid.) And for some, just being skinny like Tiffany Yep is a big benefit in itself.

Although it probably would make even more sense with a load that is already mechanical in nature, such as an air compressor. Now you're comparing the cost of a set of pedals to the cost of a motor, and it's clear what would win.

Building a pedal power bicycle 12 volt generator, ghetto style - EcoRenovator

__________________
If America manages to eliminate obesity, we would save as much fuel as if every American were to stop driving for three days every year. To be slender like Tiffany Yep is to be a real hypermiler...

Allie Moore and I have a combined carbon footprint much smaller than that of one average American...
  Reply With Quote
Reply  Post New Thread

Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Summer FE options - Scooter, bike assist, etc friedlbug Alternative Transportation 16 02-20-2009 01:41 AM
ten reasons to bike instead of drive johnpr Alternative Transportation 58 07-03-2008 07:29 PM
The Ultimate Commuter Bike NoCO2 Alternative Transportation 13 02-29-2008 12:45 PM
How to make riding a bike more attractive SVOboy Alternative Transportation 12 01-21-2008 09:56 PM




Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.5.2
All content copyright EcoModder.com