Friday, December 27, 2013

A Glimpse in History: The Bicycle


One of Leonardo Da Vinci's students in the 1490's made rough drafts of a bicycle. They were found among Da Vinci's writings for the Italian government in 1966 by a group of monks. What is realized with these findings is that in the 1490's all the parts of a bicycle were available to inventors and the public. Inventors were thinking about how to use the parts as well, but didn't think about putting them together. Interesting, is it not? The term bicycle was coined in France in the 1860s.

In 1870 James Starley made a bicycle with a large front wheel and a small back wheel. It was called the "penny-farthing" bicycle. The gear made the wheel turn two times per each revolution of the pedals. The front wheel was as high as the rider's leg length.

The problem with the penny-farthing (high bicycle) was that it was very dangerous because if the rider were to stop the rider could fall backwards. Also it was dangerous going down a hill. There was a lever that was operated by a spoon brake which could cause a fall and a special gear that made the wheel turn twice for each revolution. Oops!


The Penny-Farthing

The first bicycle with a chain was made in 1874 by H.J. Lawson. The bicycle was made up of two wheels the same size driven by a chain on the back wheel. It was called the safety bicycle.

In 1893 the Wright Brothers decided to open up a bicycle shop. They sold bicycles and fixed old ones. When they decided to make the airplane, they used most of their knowledge from their bicycle career.
From 1900 through the 1950's there wasn't much enhancement on the bicycle because of the invention of the car. Bikes looked the same for almost 50 years with thick rubber tires, one gear, and metal frames.


10 Reasons to Ride a Bike:

1-Environmentally Friendly
2-Saves Gas
3-Saves Money
4-Good for Physical, Mental and Emotional Health
5-Convenient and Practical
6-Less Congested Roads
7-Quieter City
8-Opportunity to Enjoy the Environment
9-Greater Human interaction
10-Fun and Exhilarating








Bike Safe!




Photos: Indiegogo.com and Gallery.nen.gov.uk
Information:library.thinkquest.org

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