How to travel around Europe for almost free?


Hello friends!

Would you like to travel without spending money on transport, and at the same time being able to carry all the necessary things with you? I think many people dream about it.

Italian inventor Benoit Vanden Haute, also known as «Sun Biker», at 36, built an e-bike that could travel 40-60 km on cloudy days and unlimited distance on sunny days.

The inventor has set himself the goal of developing and assembling an inexpensive vehicle that will allow you to travel significant distances, and on which you can take equipment for your favorite activities, such as kayaking and diving.

The Dutch bicycle Koga Worldtraveller was used as a donor.

And although it is rather difficult to call it inexpensive by Russian standards (the price today is about 160 thousand rubles), but its name itself suggests that it is intended for travel, which means that it must have a rather serious margin of reliability.

It features Shimano hardware including an SLX rear derailleur and HG500 11-34 cassette, Magura hydraulic brakes and Schwalbe puncture-resistant tires.

From it, the inventor made an electric bicycle by installing a Crystalyte HT 3525 direct drive motor weighing 6.5 kg in the rear wheel, operating in this case at a power of up to 1000 W.

The engine is controlled by a controller from the same manufacturer Crystalyte. The Cycle Analyst is used as a display, allowing you to track many parameters of the trip.

48V battery

Solar panels are used not only as a power source, but also as the roof of the trailer on which Benoit placed the folding kayak.

Also on the trailer are basic kitchen equipment, a bag of tools and spare parts, and even a refrigerator, which is powered by the main battery through a voltage step-down converter (from 48 volts to 12 volts).

The electrical equipment supports the recuperation function, which in this case is quite relevant, since the bike together with the trailer weighs quite a lot. Regeneration not only saves brake pads, but also recharges the battery on long descents.

The bike with the electrical equipment installed on it weighs 50 kg, the trailer is about 100 kg, and together with Benoit the total weight is 220 kg.

When Benoit walks into a store or a cafe for lunch, he does not worry about the expensive equipment installed on the bike and trailer: he decided that constant anxiety is bad for his health, and just scored. Or rather, he decided that he would start worrying only at the moment when something was missing. By the way, the entire set of equipment cost the traveler 5-6 thousand euros.

During the trip, Benoit meets many interesting people. Some of them ask where he is going to go next and just ride a bike next to him for several kilometers, some go on foot and ask about everything.

According to the traveler, the reaction of people in 99.9% of cases is positive, many invite him to their home or offer a place on their territory to set up a tent and safely store a trailer.

When Benoit thinks about stopping for the night, he pre-selects a location with open space to the east so that the next morning, while he sleeps, the battery of the electric bike is recharged with the energy of the sun.

Starting his journey on April 1, 2019 in Scandinavia, he has traveled more than 11,000 km and now spends the winter in the south of Portugal.

Benoit keeps a diary on the website

The idea to write this article came to me after I watched the video filmed by the other two travelers — I was perfectly charged with positive, and even prepared subtitles for it, which the author added to the video. So I propose to turn on subtitles, select the language «Russian (Latin)» and enjoy watching!

If you like it, put a «thumbs up»


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