At any given moment, there are approximately a zillion crowdfunding campaigns on the web. Take a stroll through Kickstarter or Indiegogo and you’ll find no shortage of weird, useless, and downright stupid projects out there — alongside some real gems. In this column, we cut through all the worthless wearables and Oculus Rift ripoffs to round up the week’s most unusual, ambitious, and exciting projects. But don’t grab your wallet just yet. Keep in mind that any crowdfunded project can fail — even the most well-intentioned. Do your homework before cutting a check for the gadget of your dreams
“During my years in the ebike trading business, I learned that customers have their own unique idea of the perfect ebike design, and most cyclists have their own favorite bikes lying at home,” Eric Chow, UrbanX founder and CTO, told Digital Trends in an interview. “So I thought, ‘Why not make a kit that is easy enough for anyone to install without any skills needed, that would help customers save their money, help the planet saves resources, and help the customer get their very special ebike to their own best taste?’”
UrbanX boasts 350 watts of power, a 20 mph top speed, and 30 miles of range on a single battery, according to the company. All that can be found in a package that weighs just 15 lbs. Perhaps most impressive of all is the company’s claim that it takes just 60 seconds to attach the UrbanX. “Simplicity is one of the key features that we emphasize from the beginning,” Chow said.
You’ll need to detach your original wheel, attach the UrbanX in its place, secure the throttle to the handlebar, and then connect the wheel to the throttle cable — so one minute might be a bit optimistic, but the transition should still be quick. Once you’re all set up, the bike can function in three modes: full-electric, hybrid pedal assist, and as a traditional bike. An UrbanX app also offers distance, speed, and battery life tracking.