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Seven League Boots 58

Vantage writes: "Quite possibly the coolest toy ever for the athletic Geek. PowerSkips allow an energetic Geek to jump over 6 feet in the air. These things are the coolest things I have ever played with."
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Seven League Boots

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  • by Telcontar ( 819 ) on Sunday April 01, 2001 @04:13AM (#323498) Homepage
    I've heard of these boots before, but have not seen them available for sale. Prototypes existed and were demonstrated in Berlin last year IIRC.
    The boots are so expensive because only the latest composite materials are strong enough to withstand the great strain on the material. Makes me wonder what strain your bones and joints have to withstand if you use those boots ;^)
  • From http://www.powerskip.de/function.html :
    First, there is a risk of breakage of the spring of about 5% after 100 hours use. This percentage rises when the equipment is used longer. This data result from an evaluation of the current sold PowerSkips and can change with higher experience. In consequence, it has to be stated that the spring is a life limited part. With the current technology it is not possible to design and manufacture this part for a guaranteed durable use. Exchange-Parts can be orderd.

    This kind of failure could be really really hard on your knees. Imagine comming down from 2 meters or so and having only one spring fail. Ouch. Then imagine have both fail. I'm not sure which would be more painful (and/or knee wrenching).

    Failure probability of 0.05 after 100 hours is really quite high.

    Need some kind of Hobbs meter to log the number of hours and just replace your springs every 90 or so no matter what. :-)

  • Sort of like skis?

    Just because youre a clumsy oaf that falls down in a stiff breeze, doesnt mean that these wouldnt become the next extreme sport.

  • The movies on the web site seem pretty darned convincing, if it is a fake, it is a good one.

  • I'm a geek who is 6'1" and 200 pounds. (down from 225)

    I'm not athletic, but in better shape than the average guy my age.

  • I just recieved this e-mail:<p>

    <i>"Right now there is a 70 day waiting list.
    The price starts at $1300 + shipping. If you are interested in a pair we would be more than happy to get a pair to you. If you would like to place an order you can email it to us with your phone number and a shipping address so proper arrangements can be made. We take check, cash and visa/MC."</i><p>

    So if I'm going to spend $1,300, then I'll just go and by a <a href="http://slashdot.org/articles/01/02/10/153222 9_F.shtml">motor skateboard</a>.
  • Didn't they have a guy running around in one of the junkyard wars in a set of these? Not part of the challenge for that episode, but either the judge's 'expert' brought them along or they belonged to one of the team members.

  • These boots were mentioned in a book called "More Future Stuff: Over 250 Inventions That Will Change Your Life By 2001"... Amazon has this book listed as being out of print...
  • Well, if you're running for exercise then you don't want to get something that lets you travel faster. You might want to make a treadmill or cycle drive a generator to power an electric motor to turn wheels to move you down the road. Power your laptop from it to get more exercise. Or better than a laptop, a desktop machine. And a microwave so you can have lunch while you're running at lunch time. Enjoy your human-powered minivan.
  • You've never heard of gasoline-powered roller skates? 50KPH is possible. I saw one that is 40 years old that reached 2/3 that speed. It's just a matter of connecting a backpack-mounted engine to one wheel with a flexible shaft.

    Make sure you have a lot of money in savings and cancel all your insurance before using one, as it's not fair for anyone else to have to pay for what you're going to do to yourself.

  • The http://www.powerskip.de/pricelist.htmlpricelist says they're around $850 EUR (multiply by about 1.137 to convert to USA dollars).
  • Go up to the main site. http://www.entertainfla.com/ Stilts! Stilts! Everywhere!

  • Gimme some of the crouching tiger hidden dragon lovin'.
  • God damn I want a pair. I used to blade to get around (and I dont know why I still dont) but recently I got handed a bike. I hate biking, with a passion, so much so that I will gladly walk instead of ride a bike. These things look cool, and I guess my days are numbered before I just give in and buy a freakin' car.
  • which coast? Every "geek" I have run into here on the west coast is a fitness freak.. hell, I'm even tempted to go running at lunch time.
  • they do say "performing artists" on the page.
  • ..it was a joke. Everything on Thinkgeek today seems to be bogus. (but funny, very funny)
  • OH! Stupid me. I didn't realize that Thinkgeek was only kidding! Because it's April Fools! LOL! I'm off to tell all my AOL friends via IM about this! They'll die!

    That's what you wanted to hear, right? Not that I aware of the fact that it was fool's day, and was playing along with it?

    I want you to believe whatever makes you feel best about yourself. That is what is really important here.

  • by smirkleton ( 69652 ) on Sunday April 01, 2001 @07:36AM (#323516)
    See for yourself, it ain't no April Fool's Joke. They are selling them on ThinkGeek [thinkgeek.com].

    I'm going to pick up a pair, along with that new Caffeinated meatloaf [thinkgeek.com] they are selling. It is about time they sold some REAL food!

  • Actually the maximal they list is 6.5, but that's close enough. The specs refer to vertical distance, anyway; I suspect making a seven foot forward leap with these should be possible.

    At any rate, you do _not_ want to use seven leage boots. After all we are talking about a device whose main purpose is to position your feet seven leages apart... Ouch!
  • For about 2 minutes ;-)

    Wirehead Studios
  • ...on the second picture is really sweet... (still reading ESRs Sex Tips For Geeks...)

  • nice justification, but i tend to believe that these things are for real. did anyone else see these on junkyard wars? i believe it was the episode where they had to get from point a to point b without using any wheels of any kind; the walking machine episode. the female host interviewed this guy as he ran around in circles wearing these things.

    (junkyard wars in the us, scrap heap in the uk)
  • WAY to expensive

    858.00 EUR Euros = 753.667 USD United States Dollars

  • maybe your skiis come off, but my 8 foot long ski umping skis don't.

    you probably also think cars are safe.

  • I believe the stories about the russians were true, I can't remember whether there was a /. story about them or not though.

    /Mikael Jacobson

    "But surely we won't be still stuck with Linux in 25 years!?"
  • Powerskip Website [powerskip.de]

    These things look retarded.

  • by Grab ( 126025 ) on Monday April 02, 2001 @01:46AM (#323525) Homepage
    Nope. Some fashion designer actually had a model wearing a set of these (styled better!) along with a cheetah-type outfit. Walking slowly, it does convert your gait into that "stalking" movement that big cats have, and running seemed to have the same kind of big-cat look to it.

    The film of the model doing it is an advert over here in the UK, and has been around for a year or so.

    The amount of force you'd put on it is definitely quite large, but it's a known quantity. So you can get your spring steel made up to right specifications, and you're OK. Incidentally, if you watch the film, the curved struts at the back do actually bend quite considerably on impact.

    What it doesn't discuss is what happens if a strut breaks from metal fatigue. I imagine some serious body protection would be a good idea.

  • by Rhinobird ( 151521 ) on Sunday April 01, 2001 @04:14AM (#323526) Homepage
    Why not just go straight to the manufacturer? http://www.powerskip.de/ [powerskip.de]
  • april fools.
    hyuk hyuk hyuk hyuk
    That was funny.

    Oh... did you hear that some kid in idaho made a lightsaber out of a laser pointer? Cuts through people and all that shit. Some home movies can be found at the following addresses.

    http://download.theforce.net/theater/Training_32 0. mov

    Oh yah, the goatse.ck guy is gone, the RIAA took him off the net - something about a pirated movie pic in the background - go, check for yourself if you don't believe me...

    Gnight. Go ahead, mod me down. I'll laugh when this is revealed as a prank . . .


    I have a shotgun, a shovel and 30 acres behind the barn.

  • The site is still /'ed, but with photoshop, damn near anything. Anything is possible.

    example, I'm working on this




    I have a shotgun, a shovel and 30 acres behind the barn.

  • Hmmm... My karma goes down 5 points, and get this... all in response to this thread.


    Fuckit, I'm not a karma whore, but nice work ;)

    I have a shotgun, a shovel and 30 acres behind the barn.

  • Dude. These are so not new. Don't you remember Nickelodeon Moon Shoes [google.com]? They came out in like '95.
  • Read the date folks.
  • This sounds like something Wile E. Coyote would buy... And probably anyone trying to use them would end up with the same fate the coyote has after trying any ACME product...
  • Well, at first I thought this was a joke, but it *appears* they might be legit, or at least put a lot of effort into the joke... :) http://www.powerskip.de/ [powerskip.de]

    It's definitely not cheap, though -- check out the prices...
    http://www.powerskip.de/pricelist.html [powerskip.de]
    850 Euros =~ $750 USD

    Not to mention that you have to start buying new soles for it every 50 hours of use, and a new spring every 100 hours of use...

    http://www.powerskip.de/function.html [powerskip.de]

    Cool idea (if it's legit) but kinda pricey...
  • > 95% of people polled believe their IQ is above average.

    Hey, that's perfectly possibleliminable, as long as the other 5% are no more smartening than George dubya.

  • Dunno if these are real or not. They look like they have poor balance, and they could snap your leg in half in an accident.

    Remember, it is April Fool's Day.
  • Well, skis let you out when you fall. The boot itself does not move, so you are safer in them.

    This jumping device both moves, and attaches firmly to you. It looks like it can break your leg.
  • Back in the early 90's, some obscure news/science show on prosthetic limbs had a piece on this kooky old guy who had come up with a pair of ostrich-type legs he'd made from some garage door springs and parts from an old bed frame.

    His set-up was much bigger than this current version and it squeeked like an old bed when he ran down his suburban street, but WOW, could he move! Back then, I was considering trying to get in touch with him, 'cuz I wanted to make a pair. What a great way to get to school! Springing over cars and stuff. --Especially if you're the first one to have even heard of them by a decade or so. (I like that.)

    I hope this current version was made with a significant tip of the hat to that guy. Better yet, I'd like to see him still involved with the project.

    -Fantastic Lad

  • I'd have been doubtful in the same way you are if somebody had first described the idea of people strapping slippery boards to their feet and hurling themselves down mountain sides. But look at how that queer-ass idea took off!

    Come to think of it. . . What must people have thought of early bicycles? "What? Hurtling about on only two wheels? What a preposterous and disreputable notion! I'll have none of it! Bah!"

    You can't tell me that with the proper protective gear, you wouldn't enjoy, just a little, playing real life 'power-mech' for an afternoon.

    I wouldn't be surprised, though, to see municipalities slap some extensively prohibitive laws down lickety-split if these things ever become popular. You think bike couriors scare the shit out of people!

    -Fantastic Lad

  • That lightsaber MPG looked great! Man, I wish I could have made home movies like that when I was of Star-Wars age!

    Kids today don't realize how good they have it.

    But then, I tend to think stuff like that being impossible when I was young lent a significant ingredient in the magic of Star Wars. In a way, kids today are sort of deprived.

    Anyway, I gotta disagree with you though about the spring books being fake. --Computer animating a light saber is easy to do for a low-rent April Fool's gag. But the kind of work needed to pull off just one or two of the JPEG's on the funky foot-wear page, however, would have required a far greater degree of expertise. --The kind you need a team of people and several weeks of labor to pull together. Just building the boots would be a mission in itself! That sort of effort doesn't come cheep.

    In any case, the technology has been proven sound in the past, (a couple of times, it sounds like, by reading the posts here), so even if it is an elaborate joke, it wouldn't mean that somebody couldn't still make a pair of these things.

    An interesting experiment, though, would be to watch the trend of belief or disbelief in this product. If we're lucky, the school of humans might all swim toward disbelief and we could observe another Cold Fusion in microcosm. That'd be too cool! I've never in the past gotten my thoughts ordered enough to be able to chart one of systems from the outset.

    -Fantastic Lad

  • Was thinking the same thing... Who in their right minds would want to run around in the street getting fried by electrical wires ?
    Gotta be a joke... And not even a very good one.
  • These are great and all, but who's going to be the first to make the legs longer (and thus get more ups)? I don't have much money, but I'm willing to be guinea pig for someone who does.
    Yes, I am serious.

  • What's with the sizing range going from 200 to 300 pounds? Seems like the average geek isn't able to move, let alone power jump...
  • These things are fake. The foot print of the thing is TINY. Balance would be extremley hard to do, let alone trying to land after jumping around. The amount of force you would put on the back part after landing from 4 or 5 feet is huge and would cause it to snap like a toothpick.
    It is April 1st, so I dont know the validity of this story but come on.


  • Geeks = FAT!!! Go check out the Caffinated Meat Loaf at ThinkGeek!!! [thinkgeek.com]
  • I own a motorcycle but have enough sense to drive my truck if I go to buy lumber. I don't post questions like "isn't there any way to carry lumber on my motorcycle"?

    Windows is a much better platform for surfing web than *nix is. Web sites are often optimised for Windows platforms running IE and the assumption is made that the plug-ins are available for media content. I'm not saying that it's a good thing (it is not), but that's reality.

    I have a machine running Mandrake and also have boot partitions for BeOS 5.0 and FreeBSD 4.2, but I would not use them for my primary web surfing.

  • Just because it's april first does not make everything an april fools joke.
    ___________________________________________ _______
  • Can the Bionic Man be far behind?

  • Personally I would reword that advertisement...
    This incredible German made product is the part of the future of entertainment. The ability to jump 6 feet in the air and run with incredible speed while leaping and bounding allows a look never before seen in the entertainment world.

    This incredible German made product will send you visiting your local hospital in no time. Yes YOU TOO can now break your ankles, hit your head on traffic lights, rupture your hamstrings, and look mightly stupid on these banana colored geek toys for retards with little sense of safety.

    As the east coast Distributors for POWERSKIP we would like to invite inquiry about this incredible new product. They are in themselves an excellent fitness activity. They have also taken certain parts of the performance world by storm. They have a look and feel all there own. While I am tempted to brag about this product, we all know that a picture is worth a thousand words.
    As the east coast distributors for POWERSHIT, we would like to thank the doctors in our area for paying us to release this product as greater revenue for us, means bigger bucks for them. While I am tempted to tell you the truth, I won't because I simply won't make any money from idiots like yourself. So buy now think later when your on a hospital bed with multiple injuries!!!

    April fools its not a link [antioffline.com]
  • Actually, they were gasoline powered russian boots. They just fired a piston downward when you steped hard enough.
  • Actually, I've known about that site for some time now. It's definitely not something that was thrown together for an April Fools story.

  • I think this is an april fool's joke.

    But it's an old one. I've heard stories before that russian scientists were making "atomic boots" that would let you run at 50 km/h ... I guess the idea just appeals to us humans. I know it would appeal to me. It's just better suited for cartoons than reality.
  • "they fired a piston downwards when you stepped hard enough"

    Probably a great way to ruin your legs! God, I wish someone could provide me with a link about this (no, I'm not going to do it myself since I don't have a mouse right now and all this keyboard messing about is getting tiresome)
  • ... the boots I saw on CNN a few months ago made by some Russian aerospace engineers. Gasoline cylinders instead of springs. IIRC, one could get up to around 40 MPH with the stride those things would give you.
  • these may be a joke but the concept is a sound one...double amputees who are very active use similarly designed prosthetics

    FlexFoot [flexfoot.com]
    Aimee Mullins [discovery.com]
    Jami Goldman [rgp.com]
  • Hmm... I could just see a person snapping the left spring as they land, only to have the *right* spring operate normally and fling their leg into the air...

Syntactic sugar causes cancer of the semicolon. -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982