Learn3Ride, LLC

Patented Mobile Bicycle Ramp and Release System

The following is a mobile bicycle ramp and release system designed to aid in teaching children how to ride a bicycle. I received a patent No. US 11,498,633 B2 for the system in November 2022. The ramp itself is built on the back of a 2019 Quality Trailers 6×10 foot General Duty trailer. Having a hill is a very important aspect of teaching children how to ride, so building the ramp on the back of a trailer enables the instructor to have a hill available no matter the natural topography of the teaching location. The release system is designed to balance and hold a child on the bicycle before safely releasing them down the ramp. It is flexible and works for bicycles with wheel sizes of 16, 18, and 20 inches. This range covers the large majority of bicycle sizes that an instructor will encounter while teaching. Pictures of a patent drawing and a Solidworks screenshot can be seen below:

Patent Drawing
Solidworks Model

The design process began with various hand drawn sketches to determine exactly how the release system would work mechanically. I put a big focus on keeping the design as simple as possible to ensure that the release system was easily reproducible and easy to manufacture and repair. Once I had solidified my design, I moved onto the prototyping stage of the project. Some of the pictures of the prototype are shown below:

Front View of the prototype
Top View of the prototype
Release system of the prototype

The method that the release system uses to secure the bicycle and its passenger at the the top of the ramp is simple. The design works using a massive lever. The operator stands on a pedal near the rear of the top platform engaging the lever mechanism pushing a flap up on the other side of the lever. This flap wedges the rear wheel of the bike into a slot created by two upright boards to balance the bicycle. To release the bike, the operator simply lifts his or her foot off the pedal which in turn lowers the flap allowing the bicycle to begin rolling down the ramp using gravity. After finishing construction of the prototype, it was tested as a proof of concept before beginning the fabrication of the final ramp and release system out of better, more weather resistant materials. Below is a video of a bike with an 18 inch wheelbase being released unmanned down the ramp. Other manned test were conducted before moving on to the final design.

Proof of concept with the prototype

A couple changes were made for the final design based on some of the problems that the prototype ran into during testing. The initial slope of the ramp on the prototype was much too steep, so the top platform, containing the release system, was moved as far back as possible on the trailer and an extension was added to the back of the trailer. Lessening the slope of the ramp was important because the original slope would have sent students down the ramp too fast for teaching purposes. Throughout the entire design process of the bicycle ramp and release system, I was in direct contact with the CEO of Learn3Ride, LLC, Rich Hatch, to ensure that the final product would be exactly what he desired. Upon the completion of the ramp and release system, extensive testing was conducted to ensure the consistency of the system. I then built and assembled the entire system into Solidworks software. This enabled me to make the necessary drawings of the system needed to acquire a patent pending for the entire system. This involved discussing exactly what needed to be outlined in the patent documentation with the patent lawyer, Carissa Howard. The patent was filed on January 11th, 2021 and was now pending under the name Bicycle Ramp Application No. 17/145,450. The patent, Bicycle Ramp US 11,498,633 B2, was issued on November 15th, 2022. Below are a couple pictures of the finalize bike ramp and release system.

Bicycle Ramp and Release System folded up in the mobile position (side view)
Bicycle Ramp and Release System unfolded in the stationary position (side view)
Vertical supports used to balance the bicycle
Vertical supports used to balance the bicycle with the flap engaged
The final release system