• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com pie forums private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Anne Miller
  • Leigh Tate
  • jordan barton
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Nicole Alderman
stewards:
  • r ranson
  • paul wheaton
  • Greg Martin
master gardeners:
  • Carla Burke
  • John F Dean
  • Jay Angler
gardeners:
  • Nancy Reading
  • Mike Barkley
  • L. Johnson

Forget the hand crank and the bicycle, consider the treadle...

 
                                  
Posts: 1
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I see people with these bicycle and hand cranked designs for kitchen products, but they don't appeal to the majority. The hand crank is awkward and the bike is large and ugly.

What about the treadle?
The treadle has been used for running many different types of woodworking tools for some time now. It also powers a very popular brand of classic sewing machines. It is also used to turn certain types of potters wheels, and various other machines have implemented them as a source of power.

The biggest advantage of the treadle is that it has a flywheel which helps keep momentum and distributes the power evenly. Now, no one in their right mind would think a butcher block sized device to power a blender would be necessary. But what about one shaft to power them all? Think of the many devices in your kitchen powered by a motor and you can apply a treadle to them.

blender, juicer, food processor, Meat grinder, coffee grinder, grain grinder, pasta maker, mixer, apple peeler, batch potato peelers, sausage maker, etc.

How about a butcher block with a treadle and flywheel under it, but a gear and steel framework up top that you can attach various devices to and power through the use of the treadle.
I'm sure that if you can power it by hand crank then the leg can do the job.

Some examples of treadle powered devices:







EDITED by Staff: to repair broken YouTube link(s) {Polk}


 
pollinator
Posts: 1528
Location: zone 7
18
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i recently came up on a old sewing machine with no top, the bottom half has a treadle ( didnt know it had a name) not sure what im going to do with it, but i like the potters wheel idea.
 
Posts: 488
Location: Foothills north of L.A., zone 9ish mediterranean
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Only kitchen gadget we do is our 3hp monster blender.  I blend the whole avocado with the seed.  (highest soluble fiber of any food = artery scrubber).  I think I am going to have to rely on stored electrical juice for that machine.  Otherwise, it's pretty much just one knife and opposable thumbs that do all the work. 

Back on topic, flywheels are exceptionally cool. 
 
gardener
Posts: 2073
Location: Grand Valley of Colorado's Western Slope
215
3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Fun idea
In days of yore, grinders were foot powered.  

The spinning wheel is traditionally treadle powered.

I think just about anything could be attached to the belt that runs from the treadle, and the limiting factor would be how much friction the belt could carry. I think that is where the flywheel comes in, to gather up power into the spinning mass of the flywheel, and keep regulate the rate.  Add more gears and more flywheels, more  treadlers as the job to be accomplished grows larger.  (and resistance is added to the belt and what it is turning)

It would not be  a difficult thing to make a little generator that ran from an exercycle or a treadle.  This would be child's play to a mechanical engineer, (whether trained in academia or not).
 
gardener
Posts: 1813
Location: Zone 6b
218
cat fish trees books urban food preservation solar woodworking greening the desert
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I've been messing with the old flywheel stationary bicycles. (I find one around here on occasion). Usually they are still operational, show up cheap, and have the ghosts of all the clothes that used to hang on them (I swear...heh).

My grandfather had a pedal powered grindwheel and for better sharpening he pedaled it backwards...

My 1898 (advert showing one, is 1902) Wilson Sock Darner is wonderful for applique work, as I can get the needle dropping once about every two seconds so plenty of manipulation time.

Years back spouse and I built a springpole lathe (we had to leave it with someone when we moved the last time) and that had a learning curve, both adjusting/modifying it into working better and learning how to manipulate the pedal for smooth rolling and strokes. It was absolutely LOVELY with good sharp tools, to turn green wood.
 
Posts: 58
4
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I made my living custom making clothing using a singer treadle machine years ago. I have a corn sheller here that someone put an electric motor on and a potters wheel made using the motor of an old washing machine I have a spinning wheel and a 5 ft floor loom with peddles to change the weft. I have a collection of hand tools from the farms on both sides of the family. The farms are gone but I saved the tools on my old homestead even though few chose this way of life.
 
Posts: 27
2
3
purity forest garden greening the desert
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
What about attaching a treadle+flywheel to one of those flexible drive conduits. The end could have a universal attachment.

Either the equipment could move to the treadle, or the treadle could be placed on the floor in front of the kitchen device and the drive conduit snaked up onto the table or counter.

I like the idea of having a treadle hole built into a cabinet.

Edit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flexible_shaft
 
Posts: 17
Location: NE Washington State
3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Several of my weaving friends have replaced the sewing machine with a shuttle bobbin winder. One man (who learned to weave from his mother) said his first "paid" chore was to wind bobbins for his mother's weaving as soon as he was big enough to reach both the treadle below and the bobbin above. Now he still uses that same treadle bobbin winder for his weaving.

I've never seen a potter's wheel that was powered by a treadle. All of the manual/non-electric wheels I've ever seen had a 'kick-wheel' underneath. I wish I'd known they could be powered by a treadle since I learned to sew and spin with treadle power and wasted way too many hours trying to learn how to throw pots on a wheel!
 
Posts: 686
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
This may offer some ideas.

http://www.lowtechmagazine.com
 
Dave Bennett
Posts: 686
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Also:

http://www.notechmagazine.com
 
Posts: 4
1
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I have a treadle grinder/polisher made in 1895. I used this as a silversmith and as a knife-maker for decades. It was perfect for the decade we were off-grid and gives better control than electric grinder/polishers. The leather belts need replacing now but otherwise I expect this machine could go on working for centuries more.
 
gardener
Posts: 3712
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
507
forest garden trees urban
 
Dave Bennett
Posts: 686
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

David Cameron wrote:I have a treadle grinder/polisher made in 1895. I used this as a silversmith and as a knife-maker for decades. It was perfect for the decade we were off-grid and gives better control than electric grinder/polishers. The leather belts need replacing now but otherwise I expect this machine could go on working for centuries more.


I have a tredle grinding wheel out in the barn.  I bought it at a yard sale.  It needs to be restored since it's in very rough shape.  Hopefully I can get to it this winter. I have at least 8 knives that I started about 10 years ago.
 
pollinator
Posts: 598
Location: Western Canadian mtn valley, zone 6b, 750mm (30") precip
75
fungi gear trees chicken bike building woodworking wood heat homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
A lot of permies lean away from higher-tech methods and equipment, opting for more human-powered and, where practical, even “primitive” ones.  I also know from experience that hand tools are typically the first acquisitions made by most organic gardeners and homesteaders.

When they become a necessity (such as, for earning some money, or saving time that may be in short supply), machine tools often eventually make sense.  I know for myself, in my first year on my land I cut my firewood using a Stanley bow saw and an axe.  The next year, with a young daughter, the need to repair buildings, upgrade plumbing, build fencing, tend a chicken flock and a big garden, find paying work, and all that, I reluctantly bought a used chainsaw.  Full disclosure: I’ve been living with 120/240v line current on my place, from regional hydropower.  I’ve got a workshop with power tools that I do value.  (Maybe someday small-scale alternative energy tech will become affordable for my locale.)

But still I admire those who dedicate themselves to living with as little non-human power as possible.  This scroll saw (or fret saw) is a 19th-century treadle-power model, of a type used in much of the world.  It displays the principle that has been applied to numerous machines.  The Shakers, in New England, built cooperative community industries using machines like this, along with hand tools.  In the pic I uploaded you can see the treadle and the linkage to the flywheel, the belt going to the pulley that provides reciprocal up/down action for the saw blade, and the plate-like “table” that can support the work piece.

I know Carla C said she used a treadle sewing machine, and David C has used and preferred a treadle machine for practical purposes.  Are treadle tools currently essential to any Permies member’s lives?  (either for homesteading tasks, or earning money?)

(photo from U.K. Pennyfarthing Tools website  pennyfarthingtools.co.uk/)
treadle-fret-saw.jpg
[Thumbnail for treadle-fret-saw.jpg]
 
Deb Rebel
gardener
Posts: 1813
Location: Zone 6b
218
cat fish trees books urban food preservation solar woodworking greening the desert
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I'm building a spring-pole lathe....
 
Posts: 164
Location: North of France
13
forest garden bike bee
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Not essential, but I need/want a dentist pedal powered lathe to replace my Dremel, and dream of converting my big pillar drill to use a treadle.
779d9416a2d250702de79b8449c1ac74bc28be37.jpg
[Thumbnail for 779d9416a2d250702de79b8449c1ac74bc28be37.jpg]
DSCI0804.JPG
[Thumbnail for DSCI0804.JPG]
 
Posts: 87
Location: Rainy Cold Temperate Harz Mountains Germany 450m South Facing River Valley
8
forest garden food preservation bike solar woodworking
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi this is a great post
Ive collected a few treadle sewing machines for free because i thought they were potentially usefull. the idea of putting a treadle under a counter for kitchen appliances is great, maybe brilliant, because the quality of hand powered machines ive bought ranges from crap to excelent at every price range. I suspect that anything with a motor somewhere inside could theoretically be fitted to a band of leather, rubber or maybe even a bike chain? I have found a few excelent hand crank kitchen tools but i miss blenders and slicers which i use for putting up food. The tools in my workshop also have potential too. I would have thought a bike is better because it is less delicate and has a chain instead of a band for more torque with no streching, is that a fair call?  I am intrested in having modern conveniences at home but its nice to have working backups as i have solar power and am often waiting for repair parts or a mechanic or my budget because im not yet so skilled. I often make things MORE broken while trying to fix them. BTW carberators are best looked at by a profi the first few times you have a go at cleaning and re installing them as (oh, the time and money I have wasted). Ive have destroyed a few generators!  I think too that the medium between hand tools and power tools fit the scale of the operation here, except for chainsaws, they are gold. does anyone with a treadle\bike setup in their kitchen or workshop have time to share photos and designs? Are the tools attached to individual foot pedals or an all-to-one to save space? I have softball shoulder injury that i feel from time to time so i would prefer treadle, but is that practical? I really specifically miss my blender over winter is that better fitted with a hand crank or a foot pedal? any problems with the hand powered machines stressing the moving parts and breaking hubs etc..? Is it better to buy older tools or newer tools as the weight, materials and prices are also to consider? I would love any response even one tool at a time as it would save a fair bit of trial and error and winter with my wood oven on is the best time to put up food, renovate and fix stuff and of course also when i have the least electricity to work with.
 
Posts: 249
Location: Ellisforde, WA
4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
This is interesting to me since I don't react as fast as most ppl when machines are involved. I had been thinking that the only choices were hand crank and motorized. This would be a good way to go!
 
Posts: 48
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Taryn Hesse, I have the same idea: put a treadle assembly under/alongside my worktop to power abunch of stuff. Because it's  such a chore to set up every time, I'm thinking of keeping my wheat mill and slicer semi-permanently mounted on the shelf under the worktop with a lever-hinge to easily pull the whole lot out to counter height. I considered using my sewing machine treadle but I'm not mechanically inclined to figure out how to change the drive from same direction to right angle, if you know what I mean and it would take up alot of space in my kitchen AND kitchen grease and flour would not be good for the sewing machine! Yep, a narrow treadle to use standing at the counter would be best.
 
pollinator
Posts: 159
Location: White Mountains of New Hampshire zone 5
40
4
books fiber arts bee solar homestead ungarbage
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I have a vintage singer treadle sewing machine base without the machine.  I'm planning on making it into the sink stand in the restroom in my sewing room.  This thread has me wondering, could I use the treadle to bring water to the sink?  If I have water it will either be from refillable water jugs or I can install a water point as I am over an aquifer with a high water table.  Could this replace the need for an electric pump?  Any mechanical types have ideas?   I'll be installing a composting toilet.  Thanks in advance to any advice on this idea.
 
Cd Greier
Posts: 48
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Holey moley, Josephine!  What a great idea! We are looking for ways to make our (unintentionally) off-grid home livable and a treadle-powered water pump could solve a lot of problems. Of course a cast iron hand pump is an option, too.
 
Posts: 51
Location: North-Central Minnesota
5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Josephine Howland wrote:Could this replace the need for an electric pump?  Any mechanical types have ideas?



There is a book called the Human Powered Home you might want to reference.  The Amazon preview shows pages 34, 35 & 37 on this topic - maybe you can glean enough from that??  https://www.amazon.com/Human-Powered-Home-Choosing-Muscles-Motors/dp/0865716013/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1491190194&sr=8-1&keywords=9780865716018
 
Cd Greier
Posts: 48
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Better believe I've got The Human-Powered Home! I just wish I were better at building things LOL.
 
Posts: 22
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I know this is an old topic, but I saw this bandsaw that uses a bicycle freewheel instead of the fixed linkage of a treadle. I kinda like that (plus they usually come with a rather large flywheel attached).
Definitely considering this for my grain mill.

https://www.mortiseandtenonmag.com/blogs/blog/the-human-powered-bandsaw
 
Posts: 188
14
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I once considered the potential for a large treadmill like device that would be powered by a small number of people walking casually on a the slight uphill slope which would be approaching the highest point of a large wheel that is buried within the ground, or a structure.  I had originally considered it like putting people in a hamster wheel, but if someone fell or could not keep the pace the results would not be pleasant.  But walking uphill on TOP of the wheel could preclude the risk of injury.    Just a silly idea, I know.
 
pollinator
Posts: 710
Location: South-central Wisconsin
262
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Thomas Tipton wrote:I once considered the potential for a large treadmill like device that would be powered by a small number of people walking casually on a the slight uphill slope which would be approaching the highest point of a large wheel that is buried within the ground, or a structure.  I had originally considered it like putting people in a hamster wheel, but if someone fell or could not keep the pace the results would not be pleasant.  But walking uphill on TOP of the wheel could preclude the risk of injury.    Just a silly idea, I know.



Not so silly. At one point treadmills were a common fixture in prisons, at least according to one article I read. I'll see if I can find it again.

 
Ellendra Nauriel
pollinator
Posts: 710
Location: South-central Wisconsin
262
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Here we go: https://www.notechmagazine.com/category/human-power/page/6
 
Nathan Stewart
Posts: 22
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Still looking at the freewheel, but the bicycle wheel is just huge. My neighbor suggested brake rotors and I happened to have an old pair laying around. Haven't started building but I have started gathering parts. This is 60% about finding a home for the mill (my wife despises its very existence in our house), and about 40% about making it both easier for me, and possible for my 9yo to help. He can barely turn the hand crank, unless we're grinding cracked grain into flour.

The chain path isn't shown, but I'm waffling between a chain/bungee around the freewheel and putting another sprocket on the pedal shaft, loop that to the freewheel, and use another chain loop from the flywheel to the mill. It'd still need a return spring. I can't really articulate what I like about that - maybe the chain has less potential for lateral loading I suppose.

I'm confident enough with the general design now that I'm trying to make sure I have storage for the other set of burrs and the wet auger, etc...  Having it's own small table (it's about 14x18) gets it out off the kitchen and around the corner into the (unused) dining room.
271994257_297687202384776_8962801159527185341_n.jpg
[Thumbnail for 271994257_297687202384776_8962801159527185341_n.jpg]
 
Posts: 183
Location: Indiana
27
2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Patrick Kniesler wrote:What about attaching a treadle+flywheel to one of those flexible drive conduits. The end could have a universal attachment.
Either the equipment could move to the treadle, or the treadle could be placed on the floor in front of the kitchen device and the drive conduit snaked up onto the table or counter.
I like the idea of having a treadle hole built into a cabinet.
Edit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flexible_shaft



Great idea! There are standard sized hookups with a square shaft down through a column - like a weed eater.
There are also tools like the Dremel shaft attachment.
But such attachments would have to have STANDARD sized fittings and QUICK COUPLERS for efficiency and convenience.
 
Posts: 9
Location: Canada, Hardiness zone: 3b
2
composting toilet woodworking homestead
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
While trying to find the average horse power of a foot treadle, I found this bandsaw with some kind of foot powered thing that I am not sure count as a treadle:



Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be any plan for this machine. I wonder if it requires a lot of maintenance.
 
Nathan Stewart
Posts: 22
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I haven't seen any HP ratings for treadle power either but I am rowing for exercise, and I can say a few things:
1) Bicycle generates about 30% more horsepower than rowing. I think this is a lot to do with the recovery phase - vs a bicycle which is always on power stroke.
2) My peak rowing output right now is around 240 watts for a few seconds. My barely breaking a sweat figure is about 70w (I do most of my exercise in this range - trying to build up to longer and longer sessions of this work to expand aerobic base)
3) Treadle is probably similar to rowing in terms of you have a power stroke and a recovery, but only one leg - not the whole body. I'm guessing an average person can probably put out 30-50w comfortably for as long as care to do it. I don't expect you'll see much more than that without something you can put both legs into. I can get enough flour for a loaf of bread pretty quickly, but the arm does tire out quickly with a one hand crank. I expect that going from arm to foot power will get enough power to make it much more convenient - your feet are much more used to repetitive motion than your hands, and can put out much more power too.

My parts start showing up tomorrow. I'm still trying to see if I can come up with a way to attach the pedal directly to the freewheel mechanism and save two of the pillow blocks for another project, but I'll probably build something pretty similar to this. I've gotten the table down to where I think I'm comfortable with the size and design. I'm using half inch ply for the panels, and waiting on my micro-size pocket hole jig to arrive to start building - ironically it's one of the last items showing up.  


 
pollinator
Posts: 545
Location: Greybull WY north central WY zone 4 bordering on 3
139
  • Likes 2
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Jordan Beaupré wrote:While trying to find the average horse power of a foot treadle, I found this bandsaw with some kind of foot powered thing that I am not sure count as a treadle:

...

Unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be any plan for this machine. I wonder if it requires a lot of maintenance.



From back in when they were getting the human powered flight going the number they gave for max sustained effort was 1/10 of a hp.  1 hp = 746 watts so max sustained effort  would be basically 75 watts or 1/10 hp.  Since this was being done with bicycle type stuff guessing treadle stuff is less if that helps.  Now in burst mode a human could do just over 1/2 hp for very short intervals like take off.  But this was for times measured in seconds rather than minutes.

As for durable the one way clutch in the drive could be robbed out of a starter drive and they are fairly durable without much impact.  As for the spring holding the chain it looks like failure waiting to happen.  But the rest should be fairly durable if built correctly.

Then one other one not mentioned here is kick wheels are another common human power source.  Most commonly used in pottery but can be used for tool power.  They are large horizontally spinning flywheel that you repeatedly thurst with a let to keep spinning.
 
C. Letellier
pollinator
Posts: 545
Location: Greybull WY north central WY zone 4 bordering on 3
139
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
PS the band saw looks like it likely came from this guy's plans with the treadle drive added.


 
Jordan Beaupré
Posts: 9
Location: Canada, Hardiness zone: 3b
2
composting toilet woodworking homestead
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Yes, Mathias Wandel does interesting stuff with wood and got plans, so it is likely.

I got parts for a bandsaw, I wonder if I would be able to turn it into a movable mill. Problem is it is heavy (because it is cast iron) and 1/2 HP at max human power doesn't seem good enough.

I'm giving some ideas here, maybe that could lead to some more interesting ideas that could work for other purposes. One of the issue with treadle or bike is giving power while using the machine. Pulleys are a great way to easily pull stuff with less strenght. The bike could be used to store the energy by lifting something heavy (a big rock for instance) and then using a system that would use the energy from dropping that rock. With a good pulley system to lift the rock, wouldn't that result in less energy spent to store more energy?
 
Nathan Stewart
Posts: 22
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
75w is what a fat our of shape 52yo man (me) can do on a rowing machine for hours on end. It's not taxing. My butt is sore and my heels are rubbing raw but my cardiovascular system could do it all day with stretch breaks.

I just went to concept2's rankings picked #200 on the rankings for bike, and it's a 75yo man from Australia who is obviously fit but 75 nonetheless who is cranking out 188watts for a solid hour. He's ranked, so he's pretty fit, but I picked way down the list to exclude any freaks of nature
 
C. Letellier
pollinator
Posts: 545
Location: Greybull WY north central WY zone 4 bordering on 3
139
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Jordan Beaupré wrote:...Pulleys are a great way to easily pull stuff with less strength. The bike could be used to store the energy by lifting something heavy (a big rock for instance) and then using a system that would use the energy from dropping that rock. With a good pulley system to lift the rock, wouldn't that result in less energy spent to store more energy?



You need to keep 3 ideas separate.  Energy, instantaneous energy, and power.  Lets go with the raised rock power source.  Say you were lifting 10 tons a distance of 10 feet.  The total stored energy is large.  So add in the losses getting it there and it is bigger still.    Now pretend I am lifting that rock with my hydraulic jack and cribbing.  I am going to have to put 10's of thousands of pumps on that jack handle.  Each pump is lower energy I agree but the total number of them is huge  I will be jacking for hours, possibly days to get that rock up.  The jack handle is instaneous energy and it can be small.  The raised rock is total energy and it is large and the rate I let that rock fall is power.  As for energy spent to store energy that is efficiency and that can very widely for a given operation both putting that energy in and taking it out.  If I lose 50% of the energy in my lifting  and 25% in lowering to drive a tool it could be very inefficient.
 
Today's lesson is that you can't wear a jetpack AND a cape. I should have read this tiny ad:
Rocket Mass Heater Manual - now free for a while
https://permies.com/goodies/8/rmhman
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic