In typical WooFDriver fashion, in my search for diverse and energizing rides, I have redefined the typical scooter known to other dog drivers. Traditionally, a dog powered scooter has two wheels, like a bike, with a platform in the center and handlebars for steering. The dogs would be attached in front to mush it, and the rider would kick to assist in propelling it forward. As with my bike/trike/quad designs, I endeavored to incorporate a springer system at the sides so the dogs can be anchored at my side. Tethering the dogs more directly to the vehicle would mean better maneuverability on a wider variety of trails, and better communication and coordination with my canine crew.
My first scooter, by the Currie company, was similar to my first electric bike. It was two-wheeled like other scooters, but the wheels were smaller than average in circumference. I chose it for its electric power and, alas, not for its balance. The two-wheeled design made it vulnerable to tipping as I worked to attach the dogs. Short of affixing training wheels to it, I couldn’t find a workable solution. Its unstable stance rendered it incompatible with the idea of side-tethering my WooFPAK, so for a while I used it for free-ranging purposes. This was fun, but I found there are a fixed number of areas suitable for free-ranging with a scooter, and my WooFPAK demands variety. The craft was unable to keep up with demand, in some regards. For example, the limited battery technology at this time (AGM) put a restraint on the number of hours I could log during a ride. The scooter was put on an infinite hiatus after many successful outings. As the number of unexplored free-ranging areas dwindled and my need to attach side-tethers for the dogs grew, our time on this scooter diminished.
I thought I was ready to move on to other modes of transportation until, after lots of Internet research, I located a very interesting scooter that was self-standing… It had three wheels like a trike, and had been designed to consistently offer excellent off-road adventures! With its 1,000 watt hub motor and built-in suspension, it had great potential for a exciting ride. It also offered me new possibilities for dog tethering and camera mounting options. This scooter, called a Bikeboard, had two smaller wheels in the back and a large front wheel used to house the motor. I was fortunately able to purchase an off-road version powered by lithium batteries. We got regular use out of this vehicle and, even with the dual powered battery system, the extensive use thoroughly wore out the two 24-volt lithium batteries.
We modified the power system to use one of the 48-volt batteries from our trike/quad collection, giving us the option of interchangeable batteries. Through a combination of ingenuity, craftsmanship, and thorough research, we were also able to fabricate excellent attachment points for the springers needed to mush the dogs. With fitting side-tethering accomplished, and three-wheeled stability attained, the Bikeboard opened the door to greater freedom and adventure for my furry team. I was thrilled to able to provide my dogs with a safe outlet for exploration and hijinks. This scooter has been an excellent addition to the fleet.