Power rail for bicyle wheels.

Discussion in 'Electrical' started by Frankenstein, Jan 5, 2017.

  1. Frankenstein

    Frankenstein Well-Known Member


    I was looking at slip rings that could be easily modified to work on a bike wheel, this way if you had a 12v source on board you could power something relatively powerful in the bike wheel, led strip lights work really well on that type of surface.

    Spinning surfaces can prove a bit hard to constantly power unless you simply put a battery box on the hub and MANUALLY turn it on. I didn't want to do that in fact I'd even like to try running 4 rails or even a data line (digital LEDs use a power, ground, and a data pin to configure the lighting attributes)

    The picture above in the background is from some manufacturer who makes a bunch of kinds of slip rings but the particular one pictured gave me a pretty good idea that could be done at home.

    If a disk was properly mounted to the wheel (hub adapter to attach a sprocket or disk brake adapter) and 2 circular rails placed on opposite sides of the disk, shown in yellow. Originally I was thinking of 2 hinged contact points (orange) with a conductive material on the end, on the side facing the disk and using magnets (green) to pull the 2 parts together and closing the circuit.

    I think a couple springs would work equally well if placed midway down the 2 levered contacts and wouldn't attract weird crap that would wear the contact surface faster.

    The manufacturer version is meant for 300 amps at 500 volts so I will probably want to try downsizing to just power 12v and a quarter amp on the rails.

    In a worse case scenario if a person wanted to change lighting effects on the fly using digital and the rails just aren't supportive of a digital signal then one could hook up 2 microcomputers and send the signal with a transmitter.

    Led lights can be controlled with a small board the size of my pinky only flatter, and use an IR signal to get the job done. These are pretty fun since I was even able to put the module in a small gap inside my roller skates and have multicolored customizable-on-sight lights when skating in dark environments.

    Obviously it would be easier to change the colors while not moving to get a clear signal sent, but you probably shouldn't be taking your hands of the controls to dick around with a remote control in the dark while driving on the road anyway.

    The nice part is the power can be cut from the handlebars, and if hooked to the mains then it wouldn't require any extra steps to turn off, just throw the mains switch and all power is cut without worrying about forgetting something and also gets the battery replacement annoyances out of the way.

    Plexiglas would be a suitable disk material since I'm only using a single disk and want to lower chances of shorting something. Lexan is even stronger and slightly more tolerant of drilling holes or cutting without cracking. It can be slightly thinner too without loss of strength.