Turn Your Bike Into a Lean, Mean, Small-Home-Storage-Friendly Machine
The Schindelhauer ThinBike–a specially designed bike that goes from conventional width into a super-slim, small-space-storage-friendly ride–is pretty awesome. But after we reviewed the bike, many of you asked, “how do I do that to my bike?” That’s what the FlipCrown is about.
FlipCrown works by replacing the top locking nut of your headset. To turn the bars you do a half turn on your bike’s stem bolt with an included allen wrench; you then press a button on the FlipCrown and then turn the bars 90 degrees. Press the button again and twist the stem back to its initial position with handlebars centered and stem at proper height. Patrick Jacquet of Deltareference, the Ghent, Belgium-based design and development firm behind the product, said the whole operation takes about 10 seconds.
It’s not a revolutionary (or necessarily original) product, but it’s one that solves a vexing storage issue. One of the more useful places to use it is in crowded outdoor bike racks, where wedging your bike in is often impeded by handlebar width. Jacquet also notes that turning and locking the handlebars can be a theft deterrent.
The biggest drawback we see is that it’s only available for quill stems (both 1” and 1 ⅛”), which have fallen out of fashion in the last 20 years or so. Jacquet told us they have plans to make a threadless version that they hope to release later this year.
Deltareference is launching the product through the crowdfunding site Indiegogo. A $30 pledge will get you a FlipCrown. $60 will get you the FlipCrown plus some quick release pedals to make your bike super slim (we might opt for the MKS fold up pedals used on the Schindelhauer). And $450 will buy you their own SlimBike–a retro-styled fixie that should not be confused with the ThinBike. They also have a proprietary wallmount bike storage rack and deluxe, three-speed SlimBike by manufacturer Achielle in there as well.