There was a time I was doing a lot of bouldering and climbing. That was a real great time and I never wanna miss all the experiences I did make. I started with age of 15 years in saxony switzerland trying all time to find myself while doing climbing. There where no weekends where we have been not on a search for a great boulder, sports climb or alpine climbing route. We where traveling a lot, hurrying each weekend on the highways to get to the climbing spots. But now I did quit and it feels good. There are at the moment certain reasons why.
Making a startup and having two kids, where one is sill under a year, is maybe a reason. But overall I just feeled more comfortable to focus on what I wanna do with my life. Its great not to have this athletic pressure on me beeing good in climbing. I think climbing is all way something where you can easily bring yourself under high pressure to bring performance. I love to remind me in the good old saxony climbing where the adventure itself was more in focus.
Now having a startup running and doing all this welding stuff, having the kids and our garden brings me definitly to a limit so that on weekend I simply cant imagine to sit in a car driving 2 hours to the next great climbing spot.
Its definitly a big price to pay. A lot of friends I did certainly meet while climbing I did not see a while. I think it is really common for climbing people to have those climbing friends. You can meet them only on rocks. In real life there is no time for them cause they are hustle to the next climbing gym or rock.
I think I will do climbing again cause it was something really big in my life and did give me a lot of self finding moments but for now I like to be full concentrated with my kids and family. As sooner they grow I guess they will bring the pressure on me back to go for great climbing. The only thing I have really started thinking is how far I will go with them? Climbing (esp. alpine climbing) is still really dangerous. Even in my circle of friends people died while climbing.
As far I have not starting outpacking all the climbing equipment again I have found some real great workaround for your old climbing gear which did bring me starting to write this article. Its so magic to see the plant climbing up a rope with taking their time to do so:
It did take me half a hour to motorize my cargo long john with components which have been laying around. It is definitly not nice done and the components do not fit perfect together but function over design in prototyping.
Definitly the motorization makes a huge difference. It is now getting comfortible, fun, fast and wow I dont know what to say but this really makes sense.
Because of that a lot of things changed. I use the bike to drive to a 17km far away customer with 3 boxes full of repair stuff. It did take mit 33 minutes to get there. I could drive trough beautiful fields beside the streets and I think even If I would have taken a car it would take me the same time to get there. It did really make fun to go there and during the riding I did get my mind some fresh blowing air 😉
Even my wife has started to use the cargo bike!!! That is a real success for me cause sometimes I feel she is the biggest censor. But even she must accept that bringing our kid to kindergarden with the bike up the hill saves a lot of time and brings a lot of fun to our kid. Even I have started using it to carry our new baby and the older one together with the bike what really great works. Again even my wife has started to use it for carrying both of our kids.
I personal feel really having something what is more than a bike and less than a car. It really opens new distances. You dont say anymore: “Oh no I dont wanna ride there it is to long” You say more like: “Okay I will go there quickly to get the things organized. Anything else I can do on the way?” You are starting to look what else you can manage to carry with your bike. I have started picking up the milk from a farmer closed to us. It is just 4km away but well, doing that 2 times a week I think without engine I would not do long. But now distance doesn’t matter. You just go for it. No need for a car anymore 😉
Since 3 weeks moreless a dream did come true. Lets welcome to our garden Gerda, Frida and Brunhilde (from left to right). It is awesome cause we really get out around 10 eggs per week and have no need anymore to go for shopping for eggs.
We pickt them up from a farmer around the corner for 2 EUR per piece. They are not looking the best but I guess soon they will have a new feathering. They are one year old and will not produce the outcome of eggs they need. So they get a brave new live at our home and I think we will deal with the outcome of eggs they will make.
I was on the end really surprised how simple and easy it was to build them a nice chicken home. I just publish some pictures of the building process where I invested some bucks in some wood but generally toked the stuff which was laying around. You can do the job on one day having all materials there. My future plan is to make the door opening mechanism controlled by an raspberry pi with a webcam and a little beatbox to bring the chicken in the right mode for producing a lot of eggs for us.
For the kids it is really great experience. Its a nice job for all of us looking if there are new eggs. And well I think there was a time any not used land in a garden was used to have chickens cause it is so simple and of course one of the easiest ways to get eggs in good and fresh quality.
Well somehow me and my team we managed it to get the first place at the Grünhof Freiburg Econauten competition. Sometimes I am not really sure if it was because we do have such a great idea or if we are all typical engineers without having a plan how to make money.
Overall going into competition to the other teams is real hard. Compared to the Elevator Pitch from last autumn this time every idea was great and should get the chance to make more out of their vision. I am sure from the other teams in future we will see and hear soon more too.
So what brings the first place. Generally I think this was a really need to go further on the Carla Cargo idea. Its some timewin of half a year for sure but of course the questions are still the same. Brings Carla Cargo enough income to pay minimum one person and even more? How much orderings we can generate per month? What permits we have to fullfill to be a bicycle trailer? Which color we wanna paint all those great trailers?
I wanna also give a look to all those competitions where we did not win something. I think a lot of persons from university are using EXIST funding what is from my point of view real overpayed. The money you get per person there is really much. Well I am to long away from university and can’t get a EXIST programm. Do they think great invetions are just coming from university nerds?
We tried to get a climateKIC programm what is also real cool and really gets you independent for a long time to have time for development. I guess those guys did not like the open source idea and they did tell me on the telephone: “Your idea is to less technology oriented”. Well the focus on climateKIC is to find great solutions for CO² reduction. Can you imagine how many cars are still driving espacially in case of transportation? I am sure just some percent of alternative transportation in future with solutions like carla cargo or other cargo bikes will have the power to bring a real benefit for our climate.
I also tried to get some Innovationsgutscheine which the guys at Elevator Pitch did recommended me. Well for one coupon I am still waiting since more than 3 or 4 month. One other coupon they said it is nothing new and I guess I did a mistake allready having produced the trailer and having even pictures from that. I ask myself what was the first time there. The egg or the chicken. Invent to much and you get no funding. Invent to less and you have nothing to tell about.
You really have to learn to deal with defeats as you can see. It is not like in school that good work gets good funding. I actually write one to two applications per month cause I still think the best time to get financial support is when your are in startup mode.
Again Berlin. Again a crazy 34h hours trip to Berlin and back with CNL. I am getting to love it because it is efficient and I could spent a whole day in our capital to chat with a lot of interesting people.
I was invited to come to the 4th European KEP together (Kurier-Express-Paket-Dienst) Exhibition where a lot of KEP companies did come together and discuss future development of their sector. I was really surprised that the topic of the first talks discussed the image loss of the KEP companies they have in our society.
Even in KEP Magazins there was the overall topic of how to get more green cargo solutions. Amazing! I simply made a fast information stand of Carla Cargo and could get really intersting talks and a lot of business cards. I can understand on the other hand the KEP companies quite well that it is not easy to get green not only because I did have the chance in the early morning to see how they manage to sort and deliver the packages (from one of the big player ;-)) but also because the package transport itself dramatically increases from year to year. They have to do a crazy job to deliver the packages within 24h or even same day delivery what is getting more and more popular.
I still believe in the power of Carla Cargo and hope that the talks I did have was not just air. I am still sure that with Carla Cargo you get a green, fast and efficient way of package delivery in the last mile. So my magnificent KEP companies, your job to do is just simple. Get ready and buy a Carla Cargo trailer.
Overall I more and more have the feeling of doing something what is not pushed only by my engineering skills and creativity but also by a new bike and people movement which asks more and more who owns the city. Worldwide are coming more and more new Ideas of how we can make the cities more comfortible for the people which are living in there. Bring solutions how we can avoid of getting more and more traffic. A great and astonishing idea like that was launch today by LastenVelo Freiburg.
This is again a sattelite of the cargo bike sharing concept from WieLebenWir. The 3 guys did something real incredible in the short time they did have. They allready did manage it to get all Cargo Bikes full with advertisment. They allready have a Corporate Identity I can clearly figure out not only on the new homepage but also at the coloring of their cargo bikes. They have all 5 cargo bikes ready to go.
What I was surprised the most and what I think from concept and from the technology will give not only this cargo sharing concept a boost. No I think it have the power to enable much more possibilities for all the other sattelites. I think the most tricky part in all cargo sharing concepts is the question how to get. Well you can wait still some years for the lock8 solution or you make it that simple like the guys did. The Lock is in the box. The Box is closed electronical. You simply can open it by a RFID Chip which is absolutly common in the Car Sharing companies. The only thing in future they have to do is: Buy more Cargo Bikes and Cargo Bike Solutions so that you have the possibility to get a cargo bike within 1km of distance.
Cause the guys made this incredible job I will now close my motivation for creating any sharing concept. They made a well done job. The only thing I did miss a little bit is why they did not give a personal name like all the other satellites did like Kasimir, Daniel or Ulf. I still have a name: CARLA. After such a great corporate identity action I dont think this will be realistic, but who know. I have redirected the domain www.carlasharing.de to LastenVelo Freiburg. Maybe one day 😉
Yesterday I did deliver the 4th Carla Cargo trailer. That was a really nice job, not only because I did it for some engineer friends in Bötzingen (15km away) but also because it is a 20cm longer modell (180cm long). The guys wanna use it for there both companies to transport dried fruits (http://www.sonnenobst.de/) and photovoltaic moduls (http://www.pho-ma.de/). Yes, photovoltaic moduls. When I did hear the idea of that the first time I was faszinated. There are fields where it is even possible and meaningful to carry the photovoltaic moduls with bike for small local installations around Bötzingen.
Be the first in the world which gets a photovoltaic installation delivered by bicycle. They have garanteed me to give the first order and delivery by bike a discount. Engine Support and Benny Box are on the way to be ready for a fast, professional and save transport.
Great idea. Great guys. I wish the very best and success for their companies.
I am still confident that the Product Carla Cargo is on a good way (flickr album). A lot of small details I have changed. So we use now stronger bmx forks, semi indigrated bearings, biggest stem you can make, big apple wheels with 5bar, 180mm disc brakes.
In background there is also a lot of move in designing, finding facilities, getting a praktikant for docu and getting the eagle design for the PCB on its way. The only problem is the lack of money on the account. I would say I did completly underrated how much money is neede to keep carla cargo in flow. All money I earn I just spent into producing of new laser parts, bikeparts, products I get from metal working companies, traveling, creating infrastructure, consumables.
Tomorrow is the deadline from Startinsland and Econauten. I will upload the stuff tonight. Hopefully Carla Cargo have a chance to win something. Would be a great support which comes really right in the moment it is needed 😉
And some cool experiment on the end. Yes it is possible to put a kid and a baby on a long john. It was real easy and not that difficult and my sons did like it really much.