1878, Rudge & Co, penny farthing

1878, Rudge & Co, penny farthing, France. 

The first ancestors of the bicycle were born in the 19th century: they were called Draisines and they were basically wooden pieces with wheels and handlebar but no pedals. The first vehicle with pedals appeared in 1865, with iron frame and wooden wheels.
Soon bicycles like the 1878 “Rudge & Co” model shown were born.
The vulcanization discovery, allowed the application of rubber tires on metal rims and rim brakes on the front wheel operated via a lever on the handlebar, improving safety and solidity to the vehicle.
Tangent-spoked wheels were fitted too, together with a tubolar frame, metal fork, metal pedals, a running board on the back of the frame to help you get on the leather saddle and a lower handlebar with wooden grips.
This “weird” increase of the diameter of the front wheel derived from the continuous research for speed.
Rudge bicycles were the first top use tangent spokes, introduced in 1874 by The Tangent Coventry Tricycle Company, then bought by Rudge.

Mostra, Bike Passion, Galleria Campari

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