Sunday, January 11, 2009

Sunday Musette

I've run across a couple of items that may be of interest to cyclists. First, there are some photos from the Consumer Electronics Show. Follow the links for more details.

Bikes at CES

Here's the MOOF bike from Areaware. That oversize top tube isn't merely for show. It houses the lights and presumably, the battery to run them.

Link to DVICE page.

Areaware doesn't list this bike on their website yet, though they do sell Stridas.

This is the Schwinn Tailwind, slated to be introduced this year at a suggested retail price of $3199. At that price, it will be competing for market share with motorscooters and small or used motorcycles. I get the impression that these electrically assisted bicycles are aimed for people who really don't want to pedal unless it's absolutely necessary. They may find a simple scooter more attractive.

Link to DVICE page.

New toy safety law

In response to a federal law enacted after the death of a child, a death caused by a lead toy he ingested, new regulations require testing of many products for the toxic metal. I was surprised to learn that bicycle inner tubes contain a small amount of lead in their valves. Presumably, since most places (think XXX Mart stores) put bicycles in the toy section, inner tubes and other bike parts would be subject to testing.

"Many companies say the new law doesn't spell out exactly which products and parts of products must comply with the new limits -- and that uncertainty is wreaking havoc with business plans. Makers of bicycles, clothing, jewelry and electronics could all be forced to discard millions of dollars in inventory, companies say."

"Bicycle suppliers are upset because components such as the valve on a tire often contain lead. Although children aren't likely to ingest that lead, it may be at high enough levels to violate the new ceiling of 600 parts per million."

"Unless the manufacturers get an exemption, the law would make it illegal for many of them to sell kids' bikes."


Now, I'm assuming that most CycleDog readers don't think of their bikes as toys. Our bikes are vehicles that we use for transportation and recreation. Still, these new regulations will catch us in their overly-broad net, like it or not. I've seen the results of heavy metal poisoning, so believe me, I do not want to see anyone needlessly exposed to these hazards. Still, I've never heard of anyone ingesting a valve assembly from a bicycle tube.


Blogger WheelDancer said...

Seems like things are getting out of hand trying to protect us from ourselves. Taking bikes away from children would be far worst than the one in a million kids that might actually eat the lead-containing parts...

4:21 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home