Pedal Powered World: Literally

Bikes Energy & Sustainability Fun & Games
Pedal Powered World: Literally

This is part 8 of an ~8-part series I’m doing on bike-powered devices. If you’ve got a link to another device that should be included or a better-documented version of any of these, comment below. I learned about most of these devices through the old-news Innovate or Die contest.

Wow: go pedals. I’m in awe at the sheer number of things that people have powered with bikes, and I’m sure I’m only scratching the surface. Thanks to people who have sent me additions to my initial lists. Here’s the 31 things we’ve found bike-powered thus far:

1. Vacuum fridge
2. Blender
3. Ice cream Maker
4. Cotton Candy Spinner (added by Kai Williams)

1. Universal Nut Sheller
2. Water Pump and Filter
3. Water Purifier
4. Water Mover, Filter, and Pump

Outdoor Tools
1. Mulcher
2. Snow Plow
3. Lawnmower Bike
4. Compost Turner

Shop Tools
1. Multi-Tool
2. Inertia Welder
3. Hacksaw
4. Air Compressor

Household Tools
1. Sweeper
2. Washing Machine
3. Television
4. Christmas Lights (or at least lights connected to a pedal-powered generator)

Power Generation
1. Suspension Energy Scavenger
2. “Big Wooden Wheel” (to supposedly smooth power output)
3. Pedal Power API (both mechanical and electrical energy generation)

Bikes Moving Unlike Bikes
1. Bikeyak
2. Snow Car
3. (Bigger) Amphibious Cycle
4. Tandem (without having to see your co-rider)
5. Family Truckster
6. Rat Patrol Oz’s Amphibious Tall Couch Trike, thanks to Gentry:


7.A taxi trailer (welded) in Namibia, thanks to Aaron Wieler:


(plans for my design, an (admittedly less aesthetically pleasing) no-weld pedicab, can be found here)

8. And, last but far from least, the Microship:


Thanks to Steven Roberts for building and submitting this beautiful bike-able boat.

Without further ado, I’m going to go look for more bikes in the garbage:)

8 thoughts on “Pedal Powered World: Literally

  1. Sean Stevens says:

    Hi, I’m Sean Stevens, and I made a bicycle Pedal powered music stage for performance (Bands and DJs, for example)

    Also has integrated lighting and Laser effects, though those are currently pretty simple.

    I’ve started documenting the setup so others can create similar things.

    It’s been used at a number of local benefit events.
    also, see my personal page,

  2. Mr Foo says:

    …that frickin’ idiot managed to get his deathtrap pedicab certified by the city of Austin? I really, really, really hope he doesn’t have an accident with it, cause it’s gonna cause maiming or death unless he’s seriously revised the design.

  3. Oliver says:

    Hey Folks,

    I am reading Your pedal world post now for some time. And I think its funny but:

    If you really want to help the poor developed countrys, do you think they got mountainbikes at every corner? A chain transmission with gears need so much maintinence and breakes easily. In 95% of all this ideas a cheap winder would do the trick as well.

    best wishes

  4. robin cook says:

    last winter i made a primitive ‘cycle ski’. concept works but needs larger skis and something like the ‘ktrak’ belt system. experiment described at :
    at any rate the concept makes more efficient use of human power than ordinary skiing

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Luke Iseman

Luke Iseman makes stuff, some of which works. He invites you to drive a bike for a living (, stop killing your garden (, and live in an off-grid shipping container (

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