Curious about Human Power? Need some exercise? Trying to lose weight? Looking for a zero-carbon workout? Need inspiration? Researching technical information? Expensive electricity and gasoline making you nuts? You have come to the right place.
Every morning, I ride my Pedal Generator to generate electricity.
The Pedal Generator I built and ride charges batteries, that run
an inverter to produce 110v AC, that powers LED lights, the monitor
on my computer, my cell phones, and charges my Roomba, my eGo Electric
Moped, as well as many other battery-powered things.
All Powered by Me.
It is the most inspiring workout you can imagine, and it
saves me money!
Do It Yourself Plans
Movies and Specs
Appliance Power Stats
My Pedal Power History: 35 Years Researching the Power of Human Energy
The 12 Volt DC Pedal Generator you see on this site is a completely original
invention. I built the first version of the 12v Pedal Generator in 1976.
As an improvement over rudimentary bicycle generator and bicycle dynamo
designs, I focused on efficiency and versatility.
While a 12v bike generator is an alternative to my design, pedaling will
be less efficient,
and powering non-electric equipment may be difficult.
A unique feature in my design was a 36″ particle board disk with a groove
routed in the edge that served as the
flywheel and crankshaft
for the permanent magnet 36 volt DC motor
seen at the upper right edge of the device. A small-pitch chain provided the power
transfer system. The groove around the outer edge was lined with
“rim strips” – thin rubber straps that prevented the chain from
slipping and digging into the particle board. They are standard
bicycle parts. The motor was obtained around 1980 from Northern Hydraulic,
now known as
Northern Tool and Equipment Company.
It is a General Electric Permanent Magnet Motor, model 5BPA34NAA44, a very nice
heavy-duty, ball bearing unit. I paid USD $29 for it if I remember
correctly, and I still have it.
The bottom frame of the Pedal Generator was welded steel plate and
channel, the crankset was an American Schwinn ball bearing set,
a cotterless crank conversion spindle, alloy cranks and inexpensive pedals
with toe clips.
The crankset had a steel chainwheel on it. I drilled some larger
holes in the chainwheel and bolted the particle board disk to it. It was
strong enough (fine Schwinn steel!) to hold the weight of the particle
board disk and run true. I routed an oblong hole through the particle
board disk for the “arm” of the crankset.
The seatpost and