TM reader Woodshop Cowboy points out on his blog that this project originated as a way for him to express his mechanical interests via his woodworker skills. I’m betting that the lucky kid who received it cares less about where it came from than where it’s going — which is all over the neighborhood.
For those wondering, the balance bike (he also calls it a “suicide trike”) features two wheels at the back instead of one. The result, in the Cowboy’s words:
“…training wheels, instead of promoting balance, promote a kid to lean over the bike for stability. The training wheels train a kid to ride the bike the wrong way because he or she isn’t strong enough to get it up to speed while pedaling. A balance bike lowers the center of gravity, removes the pedals, and teaches a kid to ride upright. When the kid gets up to speed, the bike stays up! The transition to pedaling happens at a more natural age (six to eight) and is easier because the kid has already learned to balance.”
This is full of win, in our opinion, for two reasons: 1) It sounds pretty well thought-out and rings true to our ears, and 2) Anyone whose parent/guardian/friend thinks this far ahead into their future is already starting out with a big leg up.
So kudos from the TM crew, ‘Cowboy. And if you other Toolmongers have a sec, check out his blog as it’s full of other interesting thoughts, collections of fun finds, and slick projects. And hey — why not share your most recent project with the TM crowd via the TM Flickr Pool?
This Week in the Shop: Balance Bike [WoodshopCowboy.com]