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Posted by on Feb 18, 2015

Airwheel Down

Airwheel Down

Trauma in Airwheel-land Disaster has struck ! On Friday night my Airwheel was found at its normal charging station with a tyre as flat as a pancake, and worse still, one that wouldn’t re-inflate without all the air escaping from a new leak, close to the input valve of the inner tube. Of course it’s not a proper calamity of any seriousness, but in the 3 days I have been without a working airwheel I have missed it at least once an hour, and at times felt I really needed it ! Maybe I’m a proper airwheel addict. This is the first time anything has gone wrong with the airwheel in the 380 hours I’ve been on it, so I suppose I can’t really whinge at that. Except I can a bit, because I’m fairly sure that my leak was caused by movement and frictional wear of the inner tube due largely to the design of the input valve, which must, by its very nature be flexed every time you...

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Posted by on Jan 8, 2015

South Coast Wind Glides

South Coast Wind Glides

To the power of 3. Yep – 3 vids of today’s extremely rewarding airwheel glides, one of them under rather extreme conditions. Not that you’d know from the video, but today I got my first real taste of airwheeling in wind so extreme I could lean back as much as 30 degrees off upright, and still get pushed forward on my wheel by it. Very helpful for recharging if you happen to be going in the same direction as the gale, but woe betide (pun intended) you if you’re going against it for any length of time, because that really is a weapons-grade battery killer. So, your 3 videos start here with a cheeky glide round the Clarence Pier funfair, when it’s closed, but someone’s left the gate open… Then it was off to the lifeboat jetty to film the sea that claimed my camera the last time I tried it, but this time it was tied down, and I got very much the sort of shots I was...

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Posted by on Jan 8, 2015

Home Town Film Tests

Home Town Film Tests

Go, Go, GoPro 4… Back home after Xmas, I wasted no time at all in fully exploring the capabilities of this remarkable little update to the GoPro series. So now we have true 4K video at 30 FPS, and as I have been very much enjoying, 1080 at a full 120 FPS for slinky smooth 30 FPS quarter-speed film action. Good good. First stop then, the lake, with pedal cam… Slow-Mo BMXing OK, so there wasn’t much new in the filming department there – that run was all about the fun of airwheeling. Next up, we will check out some 120 FPS goodness, and there’s no better place to do that locally than down the Skate Park, where I trained my lens on 2 of the better riders there, Joe and Seb, both seen here pulling off some pretty decent aerial moves. That’s the main video at the top, obviously. Spinning slowly… And this little blog wouldn’t be complete without some acknowledgement of all the spin panorama time-lapses I’ve...

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Posted by on Dec 11, 2014

Airhweel Hour 300

Airhweel Hour 300

Airwheel Heaven Well, hour 300 has come and gone, and to celebrate I’ve done a couple of vids that aren’t so much challenges or special features but more like vaguely amusing diversions – they certainly kept me amused. I have also reached the mythical rank of Airwheel Jedi, only 2 away from Airwheel Sith Lord, which is only 2 away from Airwheel Emperor, which is where I should be soon, when I get to hour 1000 ;) In case you are wondering what 10,000 hours =  in my scale of Airwheeling prowess, it’s Airwheel Overlord. 5000 is Airwheel sentinel. Don’t make me do a chart. In the main vid I’m buggering about with my night wand camera pole (minus camera) mainly to see what the GoPro3+ will do with it, but also for general shits and giggles. But I am pleased, because reaching hour 300 means the cost of each airwheeling hour of brilliance has cost just £2 per hour, and the more I do of it, the less...

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Posted by on Dec 4, 2014

Winchester at Christmas

Winchester at Christmas

Join me for an afternoon roll around one of Hampshire’s most picturesque cities and largest cathedral. It’s nearly Christmas, so much to my surprise I found a full-on craft market at the base of the cathedral, and this resulted in some classic Airwheel skills-up proximity glide opportunities… Slow-wheeling Part 1 is all about Airwheeling the busy market, intercut with a few quality time-lapses of the awesome scenery. This was easily as hard work as Westminster was the other week, possibly more so in that at least in London they keep moving, albeit very slowly; here, people were randomly stopping all over the place, and it took all my concentration and slow-wheel skills to do the whole lot without a single UDM or fall. Couple of forced intentional dismounts along they way, as you’d expect, but generally I was very happy with that, and pleased that I seem to be able to maintain increasingly deathly slow roll speeds without losing balance. Part 2 builds on that as we head into...

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Posted by on Dec 2, 2014

Airwheeling London: Old Park Lane

Airwheeling London: Old Park Lane

Night Glide I have a job that takes me into London a lot near Xmas, and today I was playing at the Intercontinental Hotel for the NSPCC Out of Africa ball. I had a lot of time spare so used some of that to go Airwheeling my way round central London in something of a vaguely christmassy advanced proximity challenge. It’s advanced, because of the busy streets and the fact I’m doing in the dark, although I do have a 2 megaton Light Cannon to help me see where I’m going when street lighting fails… Crowd Control Around 5 FCDM’s today (Forced controlled dismounts) caused whenever the crowds got more than 10 deep, and slowed down to near stop. Often I found myself with things to lean on so I could wait for the busiest bits to clear without putting a foot down, but it wasn’t an easy ride even in the clearer bits mainly because of the horrendous state of London paving and uneven illumination. Kerbs seem highly...

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Posted by on Oct 20, 2014

Gunwharf Glides

Gunwharf Glides

Excellent Shopping… …in the video department today, although it wasn’t always easy getting it for us. God – that sounds like I’ve been stealing video gear ! No – what I actually mean is excellent and interesting video from today’s seaside urban glides on my Airwheel, which I have obtained with glide-cam, my Right footplate-mounted GoPro 3+. Gunwharf Quays, and the Spinnaker Tower has some of the smoothest, most rewarding Airwheeling surfaces I have ever had the pleasure to ride, so whenever I am near the South Coast, it’s always on my list of possible places to go to kill some time while I wait for rush hour traffic to die down. Careful, J… Today I was there late morning however, as I woke early and the sun was shining, so I got out there around 11 am to find a relatively busy concourse, and to give Portsmouth shoppers something of the classic AJ2K glide-around as I carefully wended my way between them. It would seem that I did...

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Posted by on Oct 18, 2014

Roll Cage

Roll Cage

Smoothly does it… I like that Skate Park, and its massively grippy, ultra-smooth, easily air-wheelable concrete surfaces. It’s half way between my house and town, so I often pull in on my way through, and if there’s people there doing impressive stuff I usually feel the need to film it. More often I have it to myself so it was only a matter of time before I wondered how my Airwheel and I would fare in the bowl, so on Friday I got myself in it and found out. Watch the video above to see how that went… Nothing too Exciting Given that I didn’t have any extra padding with me; only my wrist braces, and as this was my first time in it, I restricted myself to going round the edges and diagonals at medium pace, finding out where I needed to lean and twist to get round the corners. Then it was matter of increasing the speed of that, something I probably managed by about 50% 20 minutes...

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Posted by on Oct 13, 2014

Rain Glides 2

Rain Glides 2

Skills Up. The second half of the week was as impendingly and sometimes actually rainy as the first, but I was out in it regardless taking advantage of Skate Parks all to myself to learn a bit of backwards airwheeling, which is harder than it looks, and to enjoy my various waterproofing and illumination devices which allow me to continue wheeling about regardless of the weather. So, the first video above, I’m Skate Parking it, doing the backwards air-learning thing, and generally having an excellent time exploring and trying to push past the limits that environment imposes. Obviously I can’t drop into the bowl, but I can go all round it and get my moves together on the long straight the other side of it, so I did that, using the wall on the left to start the backward moves while I learned how. Brolly’s up Finally got a decent ride in actual proper teeming rain on Friday, so that ride, out of town, and along my favourite cycle...

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Posted by on Oct 10, 2014

Rain Glides

Rain Glides

Wet-wheeling I rolled into town under impending skies, and it was just as I’d poured the first cup of Earl Grey of the day that the heavens opened and deluged me, my airwheel, and any cake I might have had about my person. I manfully continued my review of some apple shortbread, but ultimately the weather defeated me as I was unable to unsheathe the cakes for safety reasons. Nobody likes damp cake. But we can see the levels of rain I was dealing with, and later to be airwheeling through… Never mind. They can wait. I’m really here to do other stuff, and go riding in the rain, in town, and amongst people, so I get my daily ‘glide manoeuvres’ exercise in. I love airwheeling Petersfield TC – I feel I know its surfaces intimately well over a huge area, and now able to avoid the dodgy bits from memory alone the ride through town is never not hugely enjoyable whatever the weather is doing. And just as...

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Posted by on Oct 8, 2014

Ultrawheel Week

Ultrawheel Week

3 Airwheel Rides a day, every day. And at least 2 videos a day gives us… a lot of videos. Far too many to do as individual blogs. So here they all are in one big pile. That’s a good half hour you can kill without even leaving the page :) We start…down on the coast – the blog video above is a fast track and glide along the coast… Then, we’re back home for a… Petersfield Town Center Test Run and now it’s time to look at some airwheel accessories for Airwheeling in the rain and at night, among other things… Airwheel Accessories Episode 3 And now for something…else, it must be… Motion Stills A serene collection of my favourite views about town, and down on the Southsea coast… Then it was back to the lake for a final Swansong Feeding the birds and trying not to lose my fingers in the process… and finally – that’s it from me for the first 2 days of this week… See...

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Posted by on Sep 24, 2014

A Week on a Wheel

A Week on a Wheel

Wot No Time ? Sorry no vids from me for a little while – been videoing for clients instead, but now my deadlines are met, I can begin to catch you all up on the weeks Airwheelings, which have been extensive, for many hours of every day… And while I knew I had a video queue as long as my arm I decided to stop taking video of anywhere I have been before… But I am never without a camera in my general vicinity somewhere, so couldn’t help but release 2 videos while I wasn’t really looking :) Airwheel Crazy For the first vid, I’m just Airwheeling about in my front yard, seeing which camera angles work, and doing quick videos like these means I can more easily work out what type of shots I like best and want to get better at capturing… So here I am, not doing anything clever, but certainly giving my editing muscles a small stretch in the right direction, as well as my legs…...

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Posted by on Sep 19, 2014

South Coast Glide

South Coast Glide

To See the Sea… I love those Southsea walkways, and can barely let a week or 2 pass before I feel the pull of the Southsea coastline, and long to be Airwheeling my way along the seafront, with the wind in my hair, and only the vaguest of ideas about where I might be heading… 4 solid miles of walkway action was my reward for venturing South on such a lovely day, and my Airwheel effortlessly glided me up and down the most challenging of slopes and surfaces. No falls or UDM’s, and very few foot-downs at all in the whole trip. Suddenly found myself surrounded by ‘proper’ unicyclists at one point, and impressed by their skills followed them for a while, but ultimately their leg muscles couldn’t compete with my batteries ;) Then it was back to the hoverport to watch the hovercraft leave, and then a leisurely glide back to the Pyramid center and home… Galleries are us… Pictures say more than I can bothered to type...

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Posted by on Sep 12, 2014

100 Airwheel Hours !

100 Airwheel Hours !

Thank you Airwheel It’s been a wonderful couple of months learning to Airwheel, and now as I move past my 100th hour of Airwheel time, I’m feeling pretty confident on it. I don’t really fall off it any more, even when doing really challenging surfaces, mainly because experience has taught me to always be doing the right speed for the terrain, and to be ready to IDM when / if I need to. This state of awareness and readiness all but eliminates the possibility of falling if your concentration remains… State of Control After 100 hours, your turns are quite tight, you can stop and start at will without getting off, and move very very slowly without losing balance. You can comfortably weave in between really quite densely populated pavement, and have a good level of control and forward planning in every terrain situation in which you find yourself. I have deliberately not learned any unessential acrobatics yet, as I don’t want to place my hands and livelihood in...

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Posted by on Aug 25, 2014

Airwheeling Adventures No 1: Guildford Castle

Airwheeling Adventures No 1: Guildford Castle

Flowery Forts in the Autumn Sun… Yes, Aerocammers, and sorry; it’s me and my Airwheel again, this time up at Guildford castle with a GoPro 2 on a pole to catch some of the past-its-prime floweriness that I am famously perfect at being late for. But undaunted, I was up at 7 am, and in town by 7.45, so had only an hour to wait until it opened its gates. But when it did, I had the whole grounds pretty much to myself, which was lovely, and perfect for some test-the-limits-style airwheeling round what were rather more challenging slopes than I remembered being here ! Challenge Airwheel Indeed some bits of the pathway were properly challenging, going up or down them, but my little X5 never failed to transport me up any slope or hill I asked of it… brilliant. The reason I can get away with gradients of 2:1 is only because I’m very light, and the pathways at Guildford castle are very very smooth, so although my...

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Posted by on Aug 24, 2014

High Point Glide

High Point Glide

Once more To the Top ! I love Butser, it ticks all the boxes, both for flying and Airwheeing. Unlike QECP on the opposite hill, which is really hard to Airwheel because of all the roots and chalky stone, Butser is mainly short grass, and well managed, wide paths that are absolutely perfect for gliding about most of the hill. Video up soon… Occasionally it goes a bit more off-road, but if you’re careful to look ahead and nimbly steer round rabbit holes and furrows, it’s a great place to ride. And even nicer when the sun goes down… Here’s some rather large pics from my Nikon (handheld, so not the sharpest)… …and then it was back down again for a pleasantly cooling drift to the car, a mile away – a journey accomplished without my feet touching the ground… More like that soon, I would have thought… See you then.  ...

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Posted by on Aug 18, 2014

An Airwheel Abroad

An Airwheel Abroad

To the French Castle ! …nobody shouted, as we departed to play at a client’s wedding in Chateau Charonne, Le Mans, somewhere in the middle of deepest (occasionally) sunny France. Death of a Hero My GoPro3 died in France, for no reason I could easily explain. I’ve fallen prey to the ‘stuck WiFi Button’ problem that hundreds have faced before me. I’ll sort that out later. Good job I took a spare GoPro2, because I was playing in a band that was playing in the grounds of a wonderful French Chateau, and it would be a shame not to Airwheel round it and share its provincial French loveliness with you lot… The light’s not ideal, and there’s uncrossable deep gravel round some of it, so I’ll just do a quick ride around the grounds on the bits I can reasonably traverse… Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult. GP2’s don’t like low-light, and it was golden hour, so not much light in the shadows, but great light further up, and bless it, it...

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Posted by on Jul 28, 2014

Park Life – Parts 1 & 2

Park Life – Parts 1 & 2

Find me a lake in the Summer Sun… I thought to myself as I awoke in steaming humidity this morning. So out I went with my Airwheel for Day 10 of my learning diary, and to have a lovely afternoon summer glide about the heath, in the nicely muted receding sun, recording it all as I go to share with you later. If you play the videos fullscreen and point a fan at your face, it’ll help with the realism. Here’s part 2, the slow relaxed actual speed glide around the lake – no de-shake – pretty much raw footage, 1080P from a GoPro3 Black Edition, ProTune Off… Whilst Part 1, top, is more of a speed-through, and mostly at 100-400% real time. If you like airwheels or lakes, you’ll like them both. Part 1 has been stabilized, which leads to some very odd and giddy camera motion, but I thought it suited the speed run we were doing, and riding a wheel feels a bit ‘all-over-the-place’ initially, so I...

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