More than half the world's population relies on the bicycle as its primary mode of transportation. The "Kangaroo" not only ergonomically fits 95% of these different-size people, it offers a variety of handling characteristics for city riding or casual biking. How?
1) A seat that adjusts vertically and slides along a V-shaped frame; 2) Extra long stem travel; and 3) A pivoting rear arm to change wheelbase/head-angle configurations.
Designed by a 7-student team from the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, the concept bicycle also combines cost-effective parts and processing. Specifically, a low-aspect-ratio monocoque frame of glass fiber/polyester resin, and SMC manufacturing. Projected price: less than $100.
Sandra Krezmien-Funk, Owens Corning, Fiberglas Tower, Toledo, OH 43659, (614) 321-8556.
While a typical fastener costs only a few cents, the expense of applying it can run much higher. That's because many small-diameter, flat-type fasteners resist automated installation.
To solve this problem, a new application system orients the fasteners in a bowl-type feeder before dropping them onto a free-floating, profiled J-rod. A vibrating conveyor moves the stacked parts to the rod's far end where they are mechanically picked off one at a time.
Originally designed for pushnut fasteners, the applicator is also good for retainer rings, grommets, washers, and gaskets.
Willem Steyn, RHO Technologies Inc., PO Box 706, Howell, NJ 07731, (908) 840-9123.