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Segway trip
Old 05-20-2007, 07:39 PM   #1
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Segway trip

Bunch of us took a Segway tour of St. Petersburg today. You rent these things by the hour. For those unfamiliar, this is a 2-wheel device with an electric motor and a bunch of gyroscopes, accelerometers and other technology which enables it to balance and turn in response to basically just shifting your weight. See Segway Web site. You ride standing upright.

They give you a lesson for about 10 minutes and that's about all it took to get going. After about 30 minutes you feel very secure, and they increase your allowable speed from 6 mph to 12 mph. Another 30 minutes and the darn thing feels like it's part of your body, almost like it's reading your mind. One charge of 8 hours is good for about 25 miles of use.

We covered about 7 miles, maybe a little more. It was a blast. Maneuvering through crowded sidewalks was easy, and on the open areas 12 mph feels pretty brisk. You can tip this thing over, but it would take some serious work to do that -- very stable.

Other than a few very specific situations I don't see where this would be highly useful just yet, but for city touring in nice weather it's a lot of fun. At $5k per unit, it's way above the sweet spot but I wouldn't be surprised to see these things really start to sell in warmer climes once the price gets below maybe $2k or so. Great thing to do for kicks, though.

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ESR'd March 2010. FIRE'd January 2011.

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Re: Segway trip
Old 05-20-2007, 09:09 PM   #2
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Re: Segway trip

i used to spend a lot of time on st pete beach, gulf side, as a college friend's grandmother had a beach house just south of the don cesar. but just the other weekend was my first time exploring the northeast section of town. gorgeous old homes there. nice large historic section to explore. i spent half a day driving through all the sidestreets north of the marina & st pete yacht club.

driving down some of those brick paver roads, especially along the water, even with good shocks, felt like four wheeling. i would suggest a segway set up with heavy-duty trail tires for site-seeing there.

"off with their heads"~~dr. joseph-ignace guillotin

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Re: Segway trip
Old 05-20-2007, 09:41 PM   #3
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Re: Segway trip

I saw my first Segway in actual use a few weeks ago--by the airport police in Charlotte. It seems like a good fit of technology--it's maneuverable enough that the officer can quickly get through packs of people walking through the long corridors of the terminals. Plus, if needed it could be used to chase down somebody on foot inside or out on the ramp. 12 mph = a 5 minute mile. With all the stuff cops carry now, it doesn't take a really quick bad guy to outrun them (even the fit cops).

Thanks for the review, Rich. I'd like to give one a try.
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