Whereas a power-assisted centerstand may not sit on the very high of your “must-have” listing when selecting a brand new motorbike, there’s clearly a marketplace for the expertise. A number of aftermarket manufacturers promote variations on the concept and OEMs have dabbled in it as nicely. Considered one of them is BMW, and a brand new patent exhibits the agency has concepts to enhance the system on future fashions.
BMW’s powered centerstand was an possibility beginning on the 2004 K1200LT, utilizing a mix of electrics and hydraulics to take the trouble out of heaving the heavy tourer onto its stand, however the firm is now engaged on a model of the concept that’s supposed to be rather more pure to make use of. As a substitute of a sluggish, push-button-operated system, the concept is to create a stand that works precisely like a traditional, handbook one, however with out the trouble.
Whereas many are certain to argue that placing a motorbike on its centerstand is a query of approach reasonably than brute energy, and there’s fact to that, we’re residing in a world the place every thing is getting energy help. Digital suspension adjustment is changing into commonplace, throttles are managed by way of servos reasonably than cables, and even energy steering is being trialed on motocross bikes by Yamaha proper now. With that in thoughts, the concept of utilizing body weight and muscle energy to hoist a motorbike onto its stand appears anachronistic. If there’s an affordable, compact, and user-friendly method to make an influence stand, then why not?
BMW’s new patent utility describes the issue, saying, “Within the case of bikes which are significantly cumbersome…jacking up the motorbike on this means can require a very great amount of muscle energy on the a part of the consumer.” Whereas acknowledging that leverage could be elevated with an extended arm on the stand, the patent factors out that this creates its personal issues by way of packaging.
But when BMW has made energy stands previously, what’s new concerning the newest patent? The reply lies in velocity and usefulness. As a substitute of urgent a bar-mounted button and ready for an electrical motor to drive a hydraulic pump, slowing cranking the stand into place whilst you attempt to maintain the bike regular, the preliminary stage of reducing the brand new stand is totally typical. There’s a peg extending from one facet, and also you push it down along with your foot. Solely when the stand touches the bottom does the facility component come into play.
A sensor on the stand registers when it hits the bottom and also you begin to put extra stress on the lever, including energy help to assist jack the rear of the bike up and pull it onto the stand. The patent additionally suggests there are buttons to activate the system on the bars and the rear seize deal with that can be utilized to regulate the facility help system as soon as the bike is being lifted. The system additionally permits energy help to be decoupled totally, permitting the stand for use manually and letting you rapidly push the bike off the stand, reasonably than ready for it to retract electrically.
Though the existence of the patent doesn’t imply the system is on the verge of being included right into a manufacturing bike, it’s a design that is sensible in mild of BMW’s ever-advancing rider-assistance expertise. With a brand new technology of boxer-twin BMW is anticipated to debut this 12 months when the R 1300 GS is launched, together with a radically totally different chassis and engine design in comparison with the present fashions, there’s a risk that the facility stand proven within the patent will come on the similar time.