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Long Distance Competition/Ultracycling, Randonneuring and Endurance Cycling Do you enjoy centuries, double centuries, brevets, randonnees, and 24-hour time trials? Share ride reports, and exchange training, equipment, and nutrition information specific to long distance cycling. This isn't for tours, this is for endurance events cycling

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Old 05-06-13, 08:00 AM   #1
WestMass
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New Generator on kickstarter - thoughts?

I just backed this on kickstarter. I hope it winds up being all it says it is!

What do you guys think?

Siva Cycle Atom
"The Atom is a lightweight, highly efficient bicycle generator and rechargeable battery pack designed to power virtually any of your electronic or mobile devices via USB. Our generators mount on most standard bicycle frames in minutes, and the battery packs detach easily to quickly extend your battery life.

The Atom is designed with top of the line magnetic rotors, powerful lithium batteries and will be assembled here in the USA. As you ride, it harnesses the kinetic energy you generate, either directly charging your device or storing the energy in the detachable battery pack, giving you on-demand power whenever and wherever you need it. The Atom is for the modern commuter cyclist, the urban biker, the weekend rider, the gadget lover, the green fanatic, and anyone thatís ever needed a charge on the go. "

kck.st/ZKkdXV
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Old 05-06-13, 08:04 AM   #2
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Wrong forum?
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Old 05-06-13, 09:09 AM   #3
WestMass
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I thought that as long distance cyclists, people would have use for such a thing.
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Old 05-06-13, 09:37 AM   #4
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There are much better solutions for long distance cyclists. We don't need a battery pack, we just need usb charging. My B&M Luxos U is in the mail, that's the best option I've seen. I didn't really buy it for that, but if I want, I will be able to charge my Energizer battery packs from that.

I would feel compelled to ridicule anyone that showed up with this object on a long distance ride, particularly if they were going to use it for lighting. I see it's only $105, but that money would be much better applied as a down payment on a dynohub and a good light.
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Old 05-06-13, 11:23 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
There are much better solutions for long distance cyclists. We don't need a battery pack, we just need usb charging. My B&M Luxos U is in the mail, that's the best option I've seen. I didn't really buy it for that, but if I want, I will be able to charge my Energizer battery packs from that.

I would feel compelled to ridicule anyone that showed up with this object on a long distance ride, particularly if they were going to use it for lighting. I see it's only $105, but that money would be much better applied as a down payment on a dynohub and a good light.
I'm not sure why you're switching the subject to lights. Luxos U is powered by a SON front wheel dynohub, do I understand that correctly? That dynohub is heavier than Atom and it costs 3x more. I don't see any obvious advantages of a dynohub over Atom.
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Old 05-06-13, 06:29 PM   #6
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I don't see any obvious advantages of a dynohub over Atom.
The Atom appears to be incapable of powering my front headlight. That, and it's complex and requires a usb connection, which no decent headlight that I know of has. I can see it being something a tourist would use. If I were off on a month long tour, it would make a nice way to change up my phone or gps, but I would still have a dynohub headlight. As far as the subject of lights - the Atom appears to be designed for charging a phone, not powering lights. We need lights, not phones to get us through the night.
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Old 05-06-13, 06:59 PM   #7
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We all have our own definition of "long distance," but mine includes a lot of night riding and having a very good light is a good idea. And to me, not having to worry about batteries is an important aspect of a very good light. The fact that the Luxos U will charge phones/gps is just a bonus.

I will be interested in the drag and longevity of the Atom. A dynohub might weigh a bit more than a normal hub, but the drag is pretty much unnoticeable to me. I'm guessing the geartrain in the Atom will be its weak point
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Old 05-06-13, 09:53 PM   #8
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If I were off on a month long tour, it would make a nice way to change up my phone or gps, but I would still have a dynohub headlight.
I agree. I would not want to do brevets that include night time riding without a dynamo hub, so comparing the weight of the Atom with a dynamo hub is pointless, as the Atom does not remove the necessity for the dynamo hub for lighting for my purposes. Thanks to unterhausen for mentioning the B&M Luxos U, which seems a very elegant solution to the problem. A dynamo powered headlight already has much of the same circuitry as a dynamo USB adapter, so adding USB output to a dynamo powered headlight is an obvious design choice -- I wish it had been available when I bought my headlight

While dynamo hubs have a proven track record with regards to longevity, the same can't be said for the Atom yet. It may last for years, or it may not. To be honest, the plastic gears seen on their website don't inspire confidence in me. I would have more trust in the Ultegra-level bearings inside my Shimano dynamo hub. Furthermore, having burnt out three different dynamo USB adapters as well as one buffer battery and one smartphone USB port connected at the time during high speed mountain descents, I no longer trust designs perhaps meant for urban riders in my kind of use. You don't really how well they cope with high dynamo voltages until you try. Currently I am using a lithium ion battery for extending battery life for the smart phone and the Garmin (their power use is small enough compared to the headlight for USB batteries still to be viable).
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