This is a growing collection of Segway Photos featuring,
Key West Sot-mobile
August 11, 2003
One of the more curious Segway
phenomena has been citywide banning of the device from sidewalks even
before any of the voting council members have even seen the device. They universally cite
its imagined dangers as reason enough to ban them, never mind that the Segway, as the very
first fly-by-wire consumer device, is unique in about every
aspect. It does not behave like anything before and is right down sedate and gracious
around people on sidewalks, foyers, plazas and walkways. I call it the first
conveyance device with social manners.
To date three communities have lost there reason and passed sidewalk bans, but the case of Key West, Florida is the oddest of them all. This is physically small, very charming and walkable community that could be made so much more livable if it would go the other way and ban the automobile and endorse all manner of electric conveyances. So to recognized Key West CC, the City Council that couldn't shoot straight, I have dedicated this second bit of schtick.
Attention, citizens of Key West, you will be cited for using a Segway, but there is still wiggle room for other devices that do fit in with your tropical paradise. Since the time of pirates Key West has been known as the drinking capital of the Caribbean. You might not can glide, but stumbling down sidewalks in a drunken stupor is A, OK in your town. In fact Key West accepts literally boat loads of tourist to water at your bars only refusing them if it is clear they might not be able to stumble back to the pier. This is a problem that can be solved with compassion for drunks and a little creativity. With this in mind I give you a prototype of a second type of EPAMD device, the Key West Sot-mobile, the worlds first two wheeled, non-tandem self propelled barstool.
Notice that I am actually sitting on the bar stool. A Segway works fine in a sitting position.
This figure is an example of my CAD concept drawings. I doodled in May inspired by the Key West news and discussions.
The bar top is authentic, cut from an actual bar top from saved from a most excellent playa tavern at Burning Man in 2001. The Sot-mobile turns by gently twisting the Coors beer on the bar top. Twist the can left and you go left, twist right and you go right.
The control stick is custom made with the turn collar in the vertical position The Coors can has an open bottom and is filled with hard epoxy turning ring and urethane filler
"sho whash you
lookin' at buddy???? Gimmme another beer."
The Sot-mobile is the latest transport for the discerning modern barfly. Before this there was always the need to scrape oneself out of the gutter to stagger to the next bar, only to be kicked out yet again and have to repeat this drudgery over and over. NO MORE! The Sot-mobile comes with its own bar segment, bar stool and turn control aptly disguised as a Coors beer can. Modeling this rig at Burning Man 2003 will be yours truly, dressed in a filthy T Shirt and worn outback hat spouting carefully rehearsed slurs and barbs to all passerbys.
At the festival, I shall glide my rig from bar to bar expecting free beer where ever I roll. "Is he in control of that thing?" people will whisper. Nobody will know for sure as the Sot-mobile bobs and weaves for no apparent reason, but somehow finds each Playa bartender without fail.
On the prowl for beer in Black Rock City.
Fastest - post time trial page World's
Fastest - pre time trial page,
Roman Horseless Chariot
The fine print:
For the purposes on this web page, the phrase, world's first, is defined to mean "rather odd".
Thinking of bringing your Segway to
Burning Man? Some care is advised. The festival is held
on a dry lake bed made of a vile alkali talc clay that I call "the weed of dirt". This soil will coat
anything it touches inside and out. Windstorms assure that the dust gets anywhere that water
can reach. The dust corrodes electronics and motors. Many devices cease to work after two or
three days on the playa. Bring your Segway in full awareness that harm may come to it from this
That said, I fully expect to have a clean, functional Segway on my return. Why? First I will leave
fenders, my "good" control stick, and the floor mat at home. (I acquired another persons damaged
CS at a scrap price, so this piece is now a throwaway item. The wheels can be cleaned, and I have
double bagged the base in shrink rap plastic with all edges sealed with packing tape. There are only
three openings, the two axles and the CS neck. All these edges have been sealed with carpet tape
and silicone adhesive. This leaves only the axle bearings exposed and these cannot be sealed as
wheels must turn. Here I have packed in a high temperature wax that will hopefully trap the dust
before it can migrate into the wheel bearings. Now all this is "extra" protection, as Segway has already
environmentally sealed the base unit. For instance there are rubber seals around the battery pack
connectors. This is a quality that does not exist on lesser mobility devices.