On-bike air conditioning system and a periscope: Two things you didn’t know you needed

spruzzabikeguy

Hit the Spruzza for a quick cool mist.

Here at BikePortland we get a fair amount of product pitches (especially since the advent of crowd-funding). Just when I think I’ve seen it all, something new pops up. Cases in point are two products that have found their way into our inbox in the past few weeks: A periscope and an on-board mister for your bicycle.

Yes, you read that right.

The Spruzza ($59) is described as, “an on-board cooling system that attaches quickly and easily to your bike. Spruzza ‘air-conditions’ by allowing you to spray just enough water to cover and cool your head, face and neck. The relief from the heat is immediate.”

spruzzaproduct

I haven’t used this myself, but the idea makes sense. We all know how nice it feels to ride through a burst water on a hot day. I know I’m not the only one who has swerved across a rural road just to feel the spray from crop sprinklers. The folks from Spruzza say their mist can help cool down your skin as much as 15-25 degrees. I can’t help but wonder if I’ll see any of these on Cycle Oregon this year.

Advertisement

If you want to run the Spruzza, you might also need a set of windshield wipers if you want to use it with this next product.

The Pedi-Scope is a periscope for your bicycle. Invented by part-time Portlander Mike Lane, the aim of the Pedi-Scope is to allow you to see what’s on the road ahead of you without having to crane your neck up. “In order to relieve that pain and strain,” Lane writes on his Kickstarter page, “it would be great to be able to put your head down even if for a few moments. But as you know, looking down while riding can lead to terrible things.”

That’s why Lane has invented what he calls, “a dashboard for your bike.” It’s a nifty design of prisms encased in a 3D-printed body that straps to your handlebars. So far he’s raised $3,000 of $21,000 and he’s got 20 more days on his campaign.

What do you think? Would you use either of these devices? I’m sure the folks behind both of these products would love to get some feedback.

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Jonathan Maus (Publisher/Editor)

Founder of BikePortland (in 2005). Father of three. North Portlander. Basketball lover. Car owner and driver. If you have questions or feedback about this site or my work, feel free to contact me at @jonathan_maus on Twitter, via email at maus.jonathan@gmail.com, or phone/text at 503-706-8804. Also, if you read and appreciate this site, please become a supporter.

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

37 Comments
oldest
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Dan
Dan
8 years ago

Agree that I would be nice to be able to keep your head down when you’re really moving. A more high-tech (and costly) solution for time trialing pros would be to have an integrated camera on the top of your helmet that projects the view to your glasses.

Adam H.
Adam H.
8 years ago
Reply to  Dan

Wow, buy a $300 camera and $200 glasses, or tilt my neck up 3 inches? What a world we live in!

Bill Walters
Bill Walters
8 years ago
Reply to  Adam H.

Spend that kind of money to gain a few crucial seconds in a time trial? For an elite few, it’s a bargain in how it might affect their paydays and in its cost relative to other upgrades.

But I should think someone would have thought of it by now. Is it known to be UCI/USAC legal for time trials?

Buzz
Buzz
8 years ago
Reply to  Bill Walters

But think of all the weight it would add to your rig…

😉

Bill Walters
Bill Walters
8 years ago
Reply to  Buzz

Heh, not mine — not since the 80s. But heck yeah, I would have bolted on that much weight to better hold a tuck in a flat-to-rolling time trial.

Chris I
Chris I
8 years ago

Did I click on the BikeSnob shortcut by accident? I meant to click on BikePortland.

gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  Chris I

lol, I wish him luck, but being an upright rider, I have no problem seeing the road ahead of me, though if you turned that baby around, I suspect you’d have a bigger potential market.

And I much prefer just asking people for a hose squirt while I ride by, it’s just more fun for the both of us that way.

Adam H.
Adam H.
8 years ago

Or just bring a water bottle…

Duncan Watson
8 years ago

I have used misters before. I ride recumbents so the pediscope is completely worthless to me. I figured my gravatar would do well next to the bikesnob reference.

Dan
Dan
8 years ago
Reply to  Duncan Watson

Would you be interested in an actual periscope, so you can see into the car next to you? I sometimes like to look over and see what on earth the driver is looking at instead of the road.

paikiala
paikiala
8 years ago
Reply to  Duncan Watson

How about something that looks behind and gives a wide view?

Adam H.
Adam H.
8 years ago

Why bother giving these people free advertising for their terrible ideas?

Ron Richings
Ron Richings
8 years ago

The Pediscope has got to be one of the stupider ideas to come along in a long time. We wouldn’t want roadies to actually look at the road ahead… Like raise your handlebars a bit, or ride a bike that lets you see where you are going. Or, like Duncan above, ride a recumbent. Or maybe a strap that pulls the rider’s head backwards so they don’t have to stress their neck muscles… What would we say about a car driver who insisted on only seeing the road ahead indirectly?

pat lowell
pat lowell
8 years ago

A rear-facing Pedi-scope would be amazing!

Mike Reams
Mike Reams
8 years ago
Reply to  pat lowell

This was my first thought. I’ve wondered for a long time why nobody has invented a better mirror for bikes.

BicycleDave
BicycleDave
8 years ago

Inventors don’t listen to the naysayers. These are both solid ideas. I would use both, but I’m too cheap to pay for them. I’ll just strap a spray bottle to my handlebars with an old inner tube or just dump water on my head and t-shirt from my water bottle.

Adam H.
Adam H.
8 years ago
Reply to  BicycleDave

That’s precisely the point, though. There’s already a simpler, cheaper solution to this problem. Why try to complicate things that already work just fine?

Dan
Dan
8 years ago
Reply to  Adam H.

YEAH! I’m looking at YOU, disc brakes and press fit bottom brackets!

Bill Walters
Bill Walters
8 years ago
Reply to  Dan

Meh. Replacing a worn-through rotor is simpler/cheaper than replacing a worn-through rim. And my ’62 Schwinn neighborhood bike has a press-fit bottom bracket that’s way more bulletproof (and heavy) than those upstart threaded ones.

Adam H.
Adam H.
8 years ago
Reply to  Dan

Disc brakes at least offer an improvement, especially in wet and/or mud. The difference between offering an improvement on a design and creating a solution looking for a problem.

Mike
Mike
8 years ago
Reply to  Adam H.

Down with calculators! We have an abacus.

El Biciclero
El Biciclero
8 years ago
Reply to  Adam H.

Alexander Graham Bell would agree with you, I’m sure.

was carless
was carless
8 years ago
Reply to  BicycleDave

The mister is actually a cool idea (pun intended). It would even be great on those long summer touring trips.

The periscope idea… very niche, and I’m glad I don’t have drop handlebars just because of the neck/back issue.

pat lowell
pat lowell
8 years ago

The market will decide whether these products will be a commercial success – but in the meantime, why try to quash creativity?

Dwaine Dibbly
Dwaine Dibbly
8 years ago

The Spruzza will work best in low humidity environments. It is probably priced a little high, otherwise it might be useful at times.

Mike Quiglery
Mike Quiglery
8 years ago

I’m looking forward to the self driving bike. No more pedals and handlebars to clutter up your ride.

gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  Mike Quiglery

Well, electric mopeds (excuse me e-bikes) are gaining popularity. Though they still got those pesky handlebar things.

Lester Burnham
Lester Burnham
8 years ago

If these devices save just one mallard’s life, they are worth it!

Mike Lane
Mike Lane
8 years ago

Hey guys it’s the Pedi-Scope guy. Thanks for the feedback (albeit brutal, ha ha) and thanks Jonathan for posting. I’m going to take your feedback and go another direction (literally). I’m going to design a rear facing Pedi-Scope and will launch it sometime in late May (that’s the beauty of getting a posting on a real-deal bike blog, you get real-deal feedback from real-deal bikers). If you are interested please be sure to look for it on Kickstarter then. Thanks again!

gutterbunnybikes
8 years ago
Reply to  Mike Lane

I’ve thought about something like that for awhile. I can build you just about anything out of nearly anything, but I’m no good at electronics/programming. Just two suggestions, make it bluetooth so you can ditch the screen to keep the cost down. And try (I don’t know the power req.s of something like the cameras), to make it possible to run off a dynohub as well.

Eric
Eric
8 years ago
Reply to  Mike Lane

The pediscope is not for this audience. Not useful for urban-commuter/recreation use. Ignore these people Mike.

I can see it being useful for the narrow audience of endurance riders. Think “The race across America” where riders are spending an insane amount of time in the saddle. Supporting the weight of their head actually becomes a major issue. I have heard stories of riders taping their heads up because their neck muscles were completely shot. Also, triathletes could be a potential market.
I would not kill it so soon….just maybe focus on a niche within the bike industry. Sure, lower sales volumes, but it could be a springboard product upon which you could build your brand and stem other products.

Maybe incorporate the misting device into it! Now we’re talking!

Chris I
Chris I
8 years ago
Reply to  Eric

Tri-dorks will buy anything that has a percieved marginal improvement on performance, regardless of price.

Electric Mayhem
Electric Mayhem
8 years ago
Reply to  Mike Lane

I assume you have a prototype for your current idea. Can you tell us about your experience using it?

CaptainKarma
8 years ago

One more thing for the meth-heads to steal. Put in an alarm and a tracking device, we’ll talk.

slow malenky lizard
slow malenky lizard
8 years ago

you know that water stuff in your water bottle? spray it on your face. Problem solved freds

Francey
Francey
8 years ago

So your neck doesn’t mind the abnormal position when bike riding? Lucky you. I bike ride for fun every day..FUN…and the crik in my neck is unbearable. I knew there was a solution and the Periscope idea is just what I was looking for. So, I’m a backer. I hope it is successful. I’m looking forward to receiving MY reward of a Unit. Some folks criticize when they don’t know what the heck they are talking about…Just suffer from neck pain while biking and you’ll change your outlook. Good Luck, Mike Lane with the Pedi-scope.

Kazinator
Kazinator
7 years ago

I’m not a road bike snob, and think that this pedi-scope is a great idea.

My bike has 45mm tires and I don’t wear spandex.

I recently did some simple modifications on that commuter bike to get a more aerodynamic position, which lowers my head and moves my torso forward. I lowered the stem as much as possible, and then turned the handle-bar left-right, so that the bar ends point downwards, bringing the handles even lower, and a bit forward of the stem.

It was a great epiphany. Though this is faster, the real discovery is that this is much, much more comfortable!

The upright “comfort” position on a cruiser or commuter bike is not physical comfort; it is only emotional comfort: as in not trying something that is out of your comfort zone, treating the bicycle as a chair. (But, unlike bicycles, chairs have comfort features, like arm-rests, and tables in front of them that you can lean on!)

What is comfortable is supporting your upper torso with your arms. This greatly relieves the load from your spine, and also makes your butt more comfortable in the saddle, due to the decreased load there.

Another thing I noticed is more even loading between front and rear tire. I now use pressures that are closer together, resulting in a more comfortable ride.

However, the down side to this posture is that you’re looking down, unless you bend your neck backwards (relative to your spine). Bending your neck backwards is okay, but I can see how it gets problematic for long distances.

The Pedi-Scope tries to address this downside. It’s a great idea.

The cruiser posture is not a solution; it’s stupid. It shifts all the load onto your back and butt.

Try going somewhere 150 km away in that posture, then talk.

Think about it: four legged animals don’t suffer from back problems. Humans do, because of the upright posture. A cow’s or dog’s back isn’t stressed at all. The loin muscle of a cow is the most tender, prized piece of meat, because it does virtually no work. However, the necks of these animals are adapted to their four-legged position, unlike our necks.

I wouldn’t rely on the Pedi-Scope in city traffic. It seems dangerous to have your head down and only stare at nothing but a narrow-angle slice of what lies ahead. You have to be constantly aware of what is going on around you 360 degrees.

But on a country open road where you’re just pedaling away, and there are few side streets or intersections, it must be great.