Ben’s homemade pedal-powered reading lamp

While we’re not going off the grid anytime soon, we do own one piece of power-generating fitness equipment now, thanks to Ben’s 4-H project.

Under the guidance of Uncle Rick — yes, the same guy who lost a pants size eating double orders of McDonald’s side salads for both breakfast and lunch — Ben built a stand for his crappy old mountain bike and wired it up with an old car alternator so that peddling generates enough electricity to light a bulb.

We delivered it to the fairgrounds yesterday and go back for judging today.

Will it actually get any real use? Hard to say. This particular alternator is a last-minute loaner because the one we originally procured from a junk yard turned out to be dependent on a car computer to function. And this gadget goes alternator-less for too long, Ben’s likely to get restless and want to take his old beater bike out for a ride.

Then there’s the size issue; this is one enormous piece of  exercise equipment.

Still, I love the idea that somebody in the house knows how to do this kind of thing now and might eventually come up with something that’s actually useful rather than merely eccentric.

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3 Responses to Ben’s homemade pedal-powered reading lamp

  1. triathlonobsession says:

    An alternative to biking in the rain and cold—how cool!

  2. If you don’t use it a lot, it should go to be on display at Main Library for awhile!

  3. lesemann says:

    When the zombie apocalypse comes, I want Ben at our house!

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