Cycling and bicycle discussion forums. 
   Click here to join our community Log in to access your Control Panel  

Go Back   > >

Electronics, Lighting, & Gadgets HRM, GPS, MP3, HID. Whether it's got an acronym or not, here's where you'll find discussions on all sorts of tools, toys and gadgets.

User Tag List

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 06-22-07, 07:11 PM   #1
Senior Member
Thread Starter
thatcher's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 285
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
bicycle powered tv

how much output do i need to be putting out to power something like a tv. i want to rig my rollers up to generate power. anyone done this?
thatcher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-23-07, 10:21 PM   #2
put our Heads Together
cerewa's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: southeast pennsylvania
Bikes: a mountain bike with a cargo box on the back and aero bars on the front. an old well-worn dahon folding bike
Posts: 3,155
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
i saw the same question come up once before the electronics forum here existed.

Small electric generators lose a very substantial amount of power in the process of converting motion to electricity and TVs are pretty power hungry. One alternative another forum member mentioned was to wire a generator to a transistor or switch, so that when your pedal generator is making enough power the TV stays on and when it isn't, the TV turns off. You don't really power the TV with your bike, but you still have to exercise to watch TV.

This site has a list of electricity consumption for a bunch of TV models.
cerewa is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-25-07, 09:02 AM   #3
Guy on a Bike
TreeUnit's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: C-Bus
Bikes: Chromoly Univega with Nexus Hub
Posts: 249
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
TreeUnit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-28-07, 12:56 PM   #4
Recumbent Evangelist
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Kitchener, Ontario
Bikes: Rebel Cycles Trike, Trek 7500FX
Posts: 2,991
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It depends on the size of the TV. There's no way you'll be able to generate enough power for a 42" plasma display, but you could run a 20" LCD with ease.

Now, as for how to rig up those rollers... You'll probably start with a 12V DC motor, hooked up to a capacitor bank and a voltage regulator. That might be able to power the TV if it is 12V compatible (ie portable camping TVs), otherwise you'll need an AC inverter as well.

The motor will need to spin at a certain rpm to generate 12V, so make sure that for a set cadence (ie. 80rpm), the motor is geared to spin at the optimum speed.
jeff-o is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-30-07, 01:23 AM   #5
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: USA
Bikes: Trek MTB + 2 e bikes
Posts: 34
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I experimented using a hub motor in a wheel that e bikes use and spinning it on rollers. You can output a lot of amps that way but the best way would be to run the DC tv off a battery and charge the battery by pedaling on the rollers. You'd need a wet cell lead acid battery with a pretty large amp hour rating. With slow pedaling I could easily run a CD boom box and radio directly, with more effort I managed to run a 75 watt incandescent lamp through an inverter for a while. It would be really hard to run an AC tv directly because it pulls a whole lot of amps at start up and nobody can pedal that fast to provide them.
krushnoi is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 10:20 PM.

  • Ask a Question
    get answers from real people!
Click to start entering your question.