Greensburg Daily News, Greensburg, IN

News

January 17, 2014

Inventor hopes Bike Zeppelin takes off

GREENSBURG – A local civil engineer has created a Zeppelin-shaped apparatus that allows bicyclists to ride in the rain without getting wet.

Greensburg resident Jim Gorman remembers the day that inspiration struck: Nov. 22, 2011. It rained all day, and Gorman, who commutes to work by bicycle, thought about a way to make riding in the rain comfortable and safe.

He started jotting down ideas on a green sheet of paper, which he has kept to this day. It contains both writing and, in the lower right corner, an initial sketch of what he has named the Land Zeppelin.

Named after the airship of the late 20th Century, the Land Zeppelin is a plastic, see-through cover, roughly the shape of a football — though much larger — that encloses the cyclist and bike and protects him from the rain. The current prototype still has a fiberglass frame, but in the next version, which Gorman hopes to test this spring, the Zeppelin shape will be made of sturdy plastic only, except for the front and rear portions that connect to the bike frame.

Gorman recently navigated the Land Zeppelin down Monfort Street in Greensburg, near the garage in which he developed the device. Previous prototypes were based on the shape of an egg, but they caused Gorman lots of consternation. A version with a Styrofoam frame proved too weak, and another one made primarily with fiberglass was too heavy, especially with side wind.

In November 2012, about a year after which he had begun the project, he nearly gave up.

“It was obvious it wasn’t going to work,” he said. “I was depressed.”

But then he thought about shapes that people were using about a century ago, and he stumbled upon the Zepplin. The new prototypes work well, so long as wind speeds remain below 15 mph, Gorman said.

Text Only
News
  • Decatur County Events Calendar Local clubs, service groups, fraternal organizations and others are encouraged to send their Coming Events information to the Daily News at news@greensburgdailynews.com or Daily News, PO Box 106, Greensburg, IN 47240. April 22 1 to 3 p.m. - Euchre at

    April 19, 2014

  • Hoosiers need to move over for workers GREENSBURG - Hoosiers need to slow down and move over to allow a cushion of space for vehicles stopped on the road's shoulder, particularly on the interstates. National Work Zone Awareness Week was last week and the 17th anniversary of Indiana State

    April 19, 2014

  • Lunch Menus April 21 – April 25 Good Shepherd Christian Academy Monday - Pizza, grape tomatoes, strawberries and cake, milk Tuesday - Spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread, salad, ice cream, milk Wednesday - Chicken nuggets, tater tots, green beans, casserole, applesauce, milk Thu

    April 19, 2014

  • Graduation rates high GREENSBURG -- Greensburg and South Decatur High schools had among the best graduation rates in the state last year. North Decatur High School ranked near the middle, but still above the state average. Greensburg reported a graduation rate of 99.3 per

    April 19, 2014

  • nws-gb041914-pig virus photo Pig virus taking toll GREENSBURG -- When Decatur County farmer Jeff Smiley ducked into the nursery barn, about two dozen piglets rushed into a corner of their pen, their pinkish hides bouncing into one another like a porcine version of bumper cars. The piglet's round nose

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws-gb041914-santee fire station - pic1 (please place on pg1) Clarksburg Vol. Fire Department breaks ground on Station 2 CLARKSBURG -- In 2012, members of the Clarksburg Volunteer Fire Department (CVFD) Board of Directors proposed building a new Firehouse to service the Lake Santee Community. CVFD Board President Wayne Geiss recalls that construction of a separate Fire

    April 19, 2014 3 Photos

  • A pedicure that cured all my pet peeves Since I was a young person, I always had some pets around. Most of these have been dogs, hunting dogs in particular. And I loved my pets. In getting older, I discovered that having a pet dog around is a lot of work. More work than I care to do in lig

    April 19, 2014

  • Church Briefs Liberty Baptist Church Sunday, April 20 - Resurrection Sunday Liberty Baptist Church will have Sunrise Service at 7 a.m. in the Sanctuary, with the women doing the program. Following the Sunrise service the men of the congregation will serve Easter B

    April 19, 2014

  • Cards RHP Kelly on DL WASHINGTON -- St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Joe Kelly has been put on the 15-day disabled list with a strained left hamstring. The Cardinals also optioned righty reliever Keith Butler to Triple-A Memphis and recalled rookie right-handers Eric Forn

    April 18, 2014

  • nws-gb041814-ymca flat rock - pic2 Local retreat mostly unknown around Decatur County ST. PAUL -- Out in the northwest corner of Decatur County lies a place that's largely unknown within the county itself. Oddly enough, this hideaway of natural splendor is anything but secret to the rest of the world. From Spain and Hong Kong they com

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos