Pretend to be a unicycle pro with this self-balancing single-wheeled contraption

Nick Thatcher

It’s difficult to not be jealous of those people who can ride a unicycle about town with ease. If you never mastered the art of the unicycle, though, you could just make something like Nick Thatcher’s Raptor.

The Raptor, which looks like a cross between a unicycle and dinosaur, is a self-balancing unicycle, that Nick says was inspired by the Segway. The machine takes care of the forward and backward motion, while you turn corners with body movement.

Nick Thatcher
One of Nick's concept designs.

Nick made the battery-operated Raptor out of a wheelbarrow wheel, PVC plastic, and a variety of motors. An Arduino Uno helps with the balancing act by sending data over to the motor controller; without the gyroscope data, you’ll probably end up on the ground. Oh, it also glows blue.

Unlike a hungry dinosaur or fast cyclist, though, Raptor can only go at a max speed of 10mph—any faster and there’s a possibly it will lose its balance. The battery will also only last for up to 120 minutes before affecting the performance too. Still, at least it looks like a fairly pleasurable ride!

[Thatch Industries via Design You Trust]

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