College - Author 1

College of Engineering

Department - Author 1

Mechanical Engineering Department

Degree Name - Author 1

BS in Mechanical Engineering



Primary Advisor

Brian Self


The goal of this report is to outline and cover the scope of work for the Single Arm Recumbent Bicycle Senior Project. The report will give an introduction of the problem, a background of the existing research or products relating to our project, the objectives of our project, our project management plan, our final design, manufacturing, testing, our project management, and final recommendations for improving the final design. The team is being supported by the Quality of Life Program, a non-profit organization that works to improve the lives of those injured in duty while serving our nation.

Up until now, there have been no bikes developed for single arm triple amputees without the aid of prostheses. Nick Kimmel, a former marine, would like to join a group of firefighters participating in a charity bike ride from Seattle, Washington to Boulder, Colorado. This fundraising event is in support of the Gary Sinise Foundation which provides mortgage-free specially adapted smart homes to wounded veterans free of charge. In order to participate, Nick requires a bike that accommodates use with only one arm and no prosthetics. Currently, Nick, a triple amputee, is equipped with a hand-powered recumbent bicycle. However, since the bike is designed to be operated with two arms, Nick is not able to steer the bike properly, and in turn, strains his body. In addition, Nick intends to use the bike without the use of prosthetics because they overheat his body and inhibit his performance. For this reason, our group is tasked with developing a single-arm recumbent bicycle that has fully functioning steering, shifting, and braking while also being reliable and durable enough to handle a 1000-mile challenge, all without the use of prosthetics.

This report presents all work done by the team over the course of this project. The Cal Poly senior project is focused on the process so you will see a lot of design tools in use throughout this report that our group used to assist us in our journey through the design process. This process includes tools such as decision matrices, Gantt charts, concept prototypes, testing, and even a total redesign for our project after getting feedback from our challenger, Nick.