The problem: Need exercise and local transportation
The first solution: Electric bike kit! (excellent parts from ebikes.ca)
The new problem: It rains here. A lot.
The second solution: A zero emission vehicle with a roof.
The plan is to make a car that is light weight and pedal powered with electric and solar assist.
For now this is a build log and collection of messy notes. I'll add more over the next few days until school starts again. Feel free to subscribe and check back in the spring (of 2013) when I hope to have the front wheels on.
Minirant: I was trying to sell my neighbour on electric bikes and she said "It rains a lot here". Which is true and it got me thinking; is it crazy that in our culture we use two tons of steel as an umbrella and call it normal? A tonbrella as it were. This vehicle is my first attempt at a more practical solution to the rain issue.
Step 1: Prior Art
This plywood car was called the Fauchet = faux + Mochet
Georges Mochet made pedal powered micro cars in the 1940~50s.
Mr. 1JohnFoster (from http://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=25315&start=30) made his Fauchet electric car out of 1/8" plywood using a stitch and glue boat building technique. http://fauchet.tripod.com/
Stitch-and-glue seems like a construction method that is quite useful: it requires no specialized tools, no mold (unlike fiberglass), little skill/experience, cheap materials. We'll find out shortly.
(Will add image credits once the notation system is fixed)