View Full Version : NHK "Supreme Skills" show: super-stable bicycle

06-20-2016, 01:40 PM
Did anyone catch these two episodes? I saw it on a friend's DVR, but I haven't figured out how to watch it on-line.

Basically, this show pits master craftsmen vs. scientists/engineers to solve some problem. Previous shows featured paper airplanes, rope, etc.

These episodes aimed to develop a bicycle that is super-stable at low speed, to prevent fall-over accidents among older bicycle commuters. The scientist/engineer camp were represented by a group led by a robotics professor from a Tokyo university, while the craftsmen were led by Shin-Ichi Konno of Cherubim Cycles (hence my interest).

The technical solution was a gyroscope mounted above the rear wheel, with requisite sensors and actuators.


Konno's approach was to consider center of gravity and trail, and featured an experimental method to select the best features. He ended up with a very low BB, the front axle placed slightly behind the fork tips, a very high handlebar, and thigh pads to allow the rider to steer the bike with their legs.


Who won?

Well, let's see if someone can find the video first :}

06-20-2016, 05:06 PM
this show looks pretty good. If anyone finds it in English or subtitled please post a link!