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Old 04-08-2015, 04:22 PM   #1
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Default Loop Wheels

These would be great on a Segway - just like the Tweel would.

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Old 04-08-2015, 06:57 PM   #2
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Not bad at all. But I wonder if this extra comfort would affect the response of the Segway. If the rider decides to go hard on the Segway with sudden changes of direction left to right and the other way around, I wonder how the loop wheel could handle such side forces. The idea looks great though but a bit expensive.

Just found a nice video in their website. Music sounds great!

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Old 04-10-2015, 12:00 AM   #3
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If you watch the chain on the bike, it looks to be moving quite a bit, as if the flex of the wheel makes the tension on the chain tighten and loosen.

This dynamic of the wheel may make it too much for the control electronics of the segway be able to deal with. I believe there is a great deal of minor torque movements, fore and aft, that the segway depends on to stay upright. I feel that movement between hub and rim that these wheels have may be a variable that is too great for the segway to be able to muster thru...

Still, it would be interesting. I would love to see if someone gives it a try.
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Old 04-10-2015, 12:20 PM   #4
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Quote:
If you watch the chain on the bike, it looks to be moving quite a bit, as if the flex of the wheel makes the tension on the chain tighten and loosen.

This dynamic of the wheel may make it too much for the control electronics of the segway be able to deal with. I believe there is a great deal of minor torque movements, fore and aft, that the segway depends on to stay upright. I feel that movement between hub and rim that these wheels have may be a variable that is too great for the segway to be able to muster thru...

Still, it would be interesting. I would love to see if someone gives it a try.
It appears to me that the chain drive is conventional, with the front and rear sprockets affixed to hard points on the frame. Thus, flexing of the wheels shouldn't affect the geometry of the sprockets/chain. Maybe there is some play in the chain that allows it to bounce around a little when it goes over bumps.

However, KSAGAL has a good point with regards to the characteristics of the loop wheel, especially the dynamic characteristics of the linear (front to rear) motion. The Segway software is certainly tuned to handle the existing solid wheels, which have near zero linear compliance. I don't know how the loop wheels respond, but if they have more linear compliance than the software is calibrated for, then it is possible that the Seg may not respond properly to the unexpected compliance (play). If so, then the Seg might oscillate, front to rear, while either gliding or standing still. This might be small, relatively high-frequency oscillations, or larger, slower oscillations. In the worst cases, it might not be able to maintain balance.

Given the harshness of the Seg's ride, the idea of loop wheels is worth some evaluation. Hopefully, INC will look into whether hanging a set of loop wheels on a Seg is safe, without having to reprogram or recalibrate the software, which is unlikely, I think.
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Old 04-10-2015, 12:22 PM   #5
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It shouldn't be much different than using large, soft tires. What pressure to x2 wheels run at?
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Old 04-10-2015, 12:45 PM   #6
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Quote:
It shouldn't be much different than using large, soft tires.
I agree. Certainly worth trying.

However, I just checked the prices.... the least expensive 20" wheels are 258 Pounds EACH (outside the Eurozone). That's a minimum of $760 USD for a set, not including shipping!

Those prices make batteries look like a pretty good deal. Some people might have the spare cash to hang a set of these on their bike, or a Seg, but...
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Old 04-10-2015, 03:43 PM   #7
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Article on their potential for wheelchairs

http://www.wired.com/2015/04/clever-...w-wheelchairs/
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Old 04-10-2015, 03:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gihgehls View Post
It shouldn't be much different than using large, soft tires. What pressure to x2 wheels run at?
Specification is 4 psi. But it's equal pressure all around. Looking at the video, the Loop Wheels seem to actually have uneven "pressure" (the rims flex differently at different spots).

Might not be noticed by a bicycle rider - but I don't think the Segway control algorithms would like that.
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Old 04-10-2015, 08:23 PM   #9
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I disagree, I don't think the "Segway control algorithms" would notice or care, as long as we are anthropomorphizing the CU boards. Under normal circumstances, the control loop is is a glorified PID filter. It isn't so carefully calibrated around the properties of the wheel that anything different would happen.
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Old 04-12-2015, 08:27 AM   #10
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Well, it would sure be fun to find out in some controlled tests. I doubt it, but I wonder if Segway INC would carry out such a test - just like they did with the Tweels?

The cost of the current loop wheels are high - but the technology could perhaps be licenced and when made in greater quantities, they would hopefully come down. Imagine an i3 with those wheels - the suspension/comfort we always wanted on a i-series machine.
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