Been a busy time. Work has been extra busy and been traveling. Took my KnowPed folding seat scooter with me and sometimes TSA separates me and gives me the extra going over that people using devices get. But one worker had me fold up the scooter and put it on the conveyor belt to run through the machine. I had never thought about trying that, but it worked! So after that I began folding it and running it through the scanner with my belt, shoes, laptop and 3 oz. liquids in a quart-sized Ziplock bag. Made things quicker.
I also ride my scooter right onto the escalator. As the stairs emerge it pushed the seat up into me, but because I am standing it fits just right and I stabilize with my legs. Then at the bottom I just roll off. Probably looks scary, I had someone tell me they had elevators, but it works great and is super easy.
Another great thing about my scooter is that it rolls just as easily backwards as it does forwards. I can easily go 10′ or more in reverse no problem. This thing is awesome.
Lacking proper knowledge but never letting that stop me, one of the best ideas I’ve had in a while is putting a seat on my GoPed Know Ped. Originally a friend, and my son and I, welded up a seat for my TRX Personal Transporter Scooter. We cut a seat post from an old bike and welded a foot plate on it. Somehow, without any planning or engineering of any kind, we built it just right. You can check out the ride in this YouTube video here that I made a while ago. It was unreal fun. BTW, the video is a parody of, well… We were just having fun.
Eventually the TRX wore out (sadly) so before I sold it to someone for a build, I pulled off the seat we made. One day I was sitting and looking at the seat and then my GoPed and started thinking about it. Turns out if I turned it around from how I had it on the TRX, it would fit on the board of the GoPed. Not exactly, but close enough. On the back bolt pattern that I realized if I used metal washers I could over-lap the GoPed frame support for the deck. Plus, I used wing-nuts, figuring I could easily take it off for travel.
(Looking back, if I were making one now, I would try to drill the holes in the seat plate for the bolts to fit through the factory holes on the frame support.)
Anyway, I drilled the holes through my deck board where they already where on my seat post plate. Then I used bolts, large metal washers and large rubber washers to connect the seat plate to the board. I figured the rubber washers would act like a spring and compress the nut, holding it tighter. I prayed it would hold. I was right! I never have to tighten the nuts. It’s been unreal. One more thing I did…
I wanted to fly with it when we go visit family. I did it once without the seat folding. I just took the seat off and put it back on. But that was kind of a hassle. One day, as I sat and looked at my pile of old scooter parts, something came to me. I had an old Schwinn electric scooter with the fold down handlebars. It hit me to take the handlebars and turn them into the seat post.
Here’s how I did it:
First, I took the handlebars out. Then I cut off the crossbar “handlebar” with an angle grinder. I had another seat piece from another scooter that slid down perfectly over the handlebar insert part that tightens. So basically I flipped the handlebars upside down. I basically mounted the foot plate where the handlebar was.
I took it to a local weld shop. They had an ENORMOUS machine that they used to cut the metal foot plate to size. We also cut braces. The metal with the cutting was $15. I brought the scooter in and showed the guy what I was trying to do and left it with him. A while later I came back and it was ready to go with nice welds. About $35. I took it home, drilled the holes and painted it.
An extra step I took was to cover the bottom of the metal foot with rubber. I had an old motorcycle tube that I cut to lay flat, then used contact cement to glue pieces to form the solid bottom, then I trimmed it. I think this rubber helps keep things together and keeps it quieter.
It rides great, and I can quickly fold it down and put it in the trunk or a bag ready to fly. I can check it with the airline for free as my mobility aid and I just drop it off at the end of the skywalk with the strollers.
The folding seat has added a lot of functionality. Luckily, we made it just right so the GoPed handlebars are the last thing to fold and go right on top. When I slip on the web strap it is compact and sturdy. I did end up gluing another piece of rubber on the deck to prevent the sandpaper from rubbing my seat off.
I have been riding my scooter on a regular basis for about 2 years. It has been incredible. There is enough room to stand in front of it and kick. My grandkids like to stand on the deck and go for a ride. The GoPed itself is super strong and capable. I ride it indoors and out, great for big stores. The front brake is a necessity for seated kickscooting. This scooter is tough. On a trip to a National Wildlife Refuge I put it against the back bumper of the truck to load later. Only I forget and drove right over the scooter with our trailer. Not a problem. I few things got turned or twisted, fixed easily enough and still glides like a champ. The scooter can go forward or back, turns tightly and is very responsive. Very easy to ride around people and in tight spaces. And when I ride it in stores kids stare at me like I am Santa! I would love to get a read one eventually.
GoPed Know Ped makes an excellent scooter, the seat mod makes it even better!
Busy time of year for me and a lot of people, and the cold is here for sure. I am still riding on a regular basis though. The cold is cutting the range of my batteries. Kick scooting through the stores, scootering to stores, and the other day the sun popped out so we jumped on our tandem bicycle and rode around the neighborhood.
When I was buying the tandem bike the lady who was selling it told me that riding tandem was fun because it was more social, that you could talk to each other while riding. I had never really thought about it, but it’s true! We can both be right there riding and talking. Plus, it takes some coordination between parties to ride. Tandem riding is just fun, I don’t know how to describe it other than that.
The picture on this post is hint of a project that I am working on to improve my riding experience. Not much to say at this point, still just an idea that I am seeing if I can get to work. Luckily I have a friend who is very smart and willing to help, so onward we go. I will keep you posted here as it comes along. There are many challenges to riding scooters and bikes in an urban environment that typically aren’t highlighted in the usual discussions, such as road debris, other road and sidewalk users, the strain of real-world riding on the machinery. I am attempting to deal with one of these problems with my prototype. I will post further as the project develops.
I am putting off putting a seat on my Fuzion CityGlide B200 until after the first of the year. Too much going on.
This past week has had several good rides. Threw my scooter in the car and ran it up the hill to the garage, about 4 miles. Scootered home then scootered back when it was ready.
Picked up a beautiful vintage beach cruiser in excellent condition this week. Did a little research and found out this is one of the original beach cruiser frames. You can read here if you want more info on how these bikes came to be, it’s interesting. Wasn’t really looking to buy a bicycle, but we came across it and jumped. The ride is really smooth and the bike feels long and sleek. Really feels good in turns.
I put in several days on a project scooter I have, a EW 36, and FINALLY got it running. It is an interesting design, with a full complement of turn signals, horn, lights, tail lights — and wires everywhere. Took a while but I identified the wires and got a new controller and started hooking things up. Tested the throttle, good. Tested the motor, good. Replaced the controller and then chased down a bunch of bad connections.
When the wheels finally turned I was thrilled. It has been a lot of work to understand how to check things and what to check. I still have some work to do on it but it is working great now. I took it for a few short rides and then today I took it out for for 4 or so miles. It’s a very comfortable ride with the big wheels and big lazy boy seat.
This project should be finished soon. I have an exciting project waiting for me and I finished another project right before this one that I have yet to share.
Good things are happening!
Crashed my Lyric this past weekend. Was starting a ride and I hadn’t gone very far when my phone slipped out of the holder on the handlebars. As the phone fell, still operating the throttle, I reached down for it with my left hand. The phone bounced off the deck and onto the road. Still bent down, I didn’t want to run it over and I instinctively grabbed the brake with my right hand, which controls the front brake. The Lyric has very good disc brakes that stop on a dime. The front brake stopped the front wheel immediately, but the rest of the scooter was still moving and headed ass-end over the top with me going face first in front of it.
40+ years of motorcycle and bicycle riding has taught me instinctively how to fall. Time kind of slows down and I could see the back end of my scooter with its four 12v SLA batteries coming straight at me as soon as I hit the ground. Luckily it missed me when it landed. (You think experience would have taught me not to grab the front brake rather than fall.)
In the end, nothing was broken other than my pride. Got a bruise or two, but astonishingly no damage to the scooter. The Lyric is a beast. Luckily I had also decided at the last minute to put my helmet on. I didn’t think I could crash this scooter, but I learned differently. I can not only crash it, I can almost flip it. I need to pay attention, be careful.
My Schwinn s600 project jumped ahead. I took the 24v motor from my Schwinn s750 and put it on the 36v s600. I like it a lot. It is a peppy scooter on a smaller frame. I haven’t ridden it too much to see if I will keep it this way, but so far I really like it.
Time for supplies and with the perfect weather it was a great day to make a grocery run. When I need to pick up lots of things my Lyric is a mule, strong and capable. You can see my scooter parked by the shopping cart in this shot, maybe help give a sense of scale.
There are so many features that make the Lyric the scooter to beat. First, I have yet to get a flat. That alone is pretty epic. Suspension is great, brakes are fantastic, speed and acceleration are good. One great feature is you can choose from three speed settings, so when I want to go slow the throttle doesn’t jerk me. Another speed feature, and one I never thought I needed but now that I have it I use it all the time, cruise control. Almost sound ridiculous to have cruise control on a scooter but it is so useful.
The Lyric also has a headlight and tail light as well as a brake light. There is a parking brake.
It’s hard to tell in the picture, but there is a front basket that is full. There is a basket on the back on top of my battery box (the battery box is a mod I will detail later) that is full, and on this run I also carried two 24 packs of soda on the running boards.
I drove the scooter to the store, I drove the scooter in the store and I drove it home. I love this scooter.
I took a trip to another city to attend a 3 day music festival with family and friends. As a person with mobility issues, I have to take into account how I am going to navigate my environment. At home, I have time to figure things out. On the road, I have to be fluid and mobile. I was flying, so that meant cars, shuttles, planes and airports.
The festival featured over 80 bands spread over 3 days. There where 5 stages; one in an indoor arena, and the 4 main stages set far apart in dirt lots. The parking was distant, lots and lots of people, and 10-12 hour days with no re-entry — it was challenging for the able-bodied people, let alone me. I saw lots of my mobility-challenged friends making their way, I respect them for what they take on. The people at the festival were universally sweet and kind to me. And of course, my family and friends are always so beautiful in their care and awareness of me.
Here is what I used on my adventure —
GoPed builds such an awesome kick scooter. I have ridden mine for a couple of years, taken it everywhere and it even ran it over with my RV. Still riding like a champ. I modified mine to have a seat, and right before the trip I finished seat-post mod.V2, the folding seat-post. It was perfect.
Now I can fold both the handlebars and the seat, put it in a bag and hand it to special handling people who load the baby scooters and strollers on the plane. Get it back when I get to my destination. Unfold it, put the carry bag in my Schwinn folding basket, and off I go. This scooter is PERFECT for shopping, airports, public spaces. I can push it forward or back, turn very tightly, and pick it up and carry it over curbs.
My lightweight folding cane is great. I bought it on Amazon. I added a carabiner to the wrist strap and that allowed me to clip my cane to the crowd barriers that I was generally leaning against during the concerts. That way I could keep track of it and easily grab it and use it to lean on for a few minutes when I needed to. I used the rubberized wire tie to keep the cane together when it was folded.
Folding tripod seat
This small backpack has adjustable loops and I was able to carry the folding chair across the pack when I was walking. Held all my concert supplies as well. Worked perfectly.
People stop me regularly and ask me about whatever scooter I am riding. It has been surprising how many people need something like what I have, and the varied reasons they need it. I got into scooters to help me, but meeting people who use assistive devices has softened my heart. There are a lot of people who suffer but want to keep going and need a little help.
If you are one of the people who has stopped me, hopefully you will find answers to your questions here. You can also contact me if you have a specific question.
A BIG issue for assistive devices is transportabilty; can you take it with you when you are not riding it? The scooter pictured above has a folding handlebar and I put it in the trunk to take shopping. It is super lightweight and easy to pull out and use. It is a GoPed KnowPed that I stuck a seat on. It’s awesome, one of the most powerful tools I have.
The KnowPed has a wide deck and a solid adult-sized frame. The wheels are solid, no flats ever! And most importantly for a sit-down configuration like this, a front hand brake. I will do a detailed post about the seat in the future. I hope to build a folding post in the next week or two, so I will do a post on that.
You may notice that I put big, sprung Schwinn Quilted Wide Cruisers Saddle seats on my rides. They really work for me in giving me an extra bit of suspension that helps my joints. I also use Schwinn Collapsible Handlebar Baskets, very handy.
Endless-sphere.com is an excellent website for information about all things electric vehicles. I made a post there explaining my scooter named “Frankenscooter.” I put a Schwinn S750 together with a Schwinn S1000 Stealth. The result is awesome.Top speed 18 MPH.
This site is for people who use mobility devices. I started using scooters when my body gave out and what I quickly realized was information about the devices I needed was not easily obtained. It was hard to understand what devices would truly serve my needs, and I needed affordable solutions.
To that end, I have bought (and sold) many scooters trying to find the correct solutions for me. I have started this website to share what I have found.
I currently have a stable of bicycles, electric bicycles, electric scooters and kick scooters that I use in my daily life. Keeping them running has taught me how to repair and customize mobility devices. Using and traveling with mobility devices has taught me how they work in the real world, in the wild.
Life is ahead of me. I can’t worry about what I can’t do, I have to focus on what I want to do and find the way to get it done.