'Backwards' Penny Farthing

Smurfy

Naturist Smurf
I don't know what the proper name is for this design? Has anyone on here ridden one? I'm guessing that putting the big wheel at the back is much safer, and enables the use of brakes.

Here's a few pictures from an American website

http://www.thewheelmen.org/GalleryServerPro/default.aspx?moid=3726&hr=1

http://www.thewheelmen.org/GalleryServerPro/default.aspx?moid=4057&hr=1

http://www.thewheelmen.org/GalleryServerPro/default.aspx?moid=3761&hr=1

The extreme negative fork rake looks weird to say the least, just look at this one in a tight turn. Does anyone know if there are any rules-of-thumb for designing the frame geometry on these contraptions?

http://www.thewheelmen.org/GalleryServerPro/default.aspx?moid=3760&hr=1
 

Falwheeler

Well-Known Member
It's a Penny Farthing put together by Halfrauds
 
Kangaroo i think. A design whose superiority over the more common ordinary might have turned it into the leading type if the pesky safety bike hadn't come along.

Hilldodger will no doubt be along in a moment to correct all of the preceding statement.
 

sidevalve

Über Member
Raised this a little while back. There was one on the "american pickers" series. Wouldn't fancy riding one in stop start clogged up city traffic though.
 

Mr Haematocrit

msg me on kik for android
Can you imagine trying to fix a puncture on that big wheel by the side of the road :laugh: then trying to pump it up.
If you were using gas canisters to inflate the tyre you would need one so big it looks like it should be strapped to a caravan or BBQ
 
OP
Smurfy

Smurfy

Naturist Smurf
Can you imagine trying to fix a puncture on that big wheel by the side of the road :laugh: then trying to pump it up.
If you were using gas canisters to inflate the tyre you would need one so big it looks like it should be strapped to a caravan or BBQ
It has solid tyres! Brilliant when you encounter a lane full of hedge clippings. As far as I'm aware, the largest pneumatic tyres made for bicycles are 36".
 

Hilldodger

Über Member
Location
sunny Leicester
It's called an Eagle and they are an utter b****rd to ride

http://www.metzbicyclemuseum.com/Bike5a.html
 

Hilldodger

Über Member
Location
sunny Leicester
It has solid tyres! Brilliant when you encounter a lane full of hedge clippings. As far as I'm aware, the largest pneumatic tyres made for bicycles are 36".

In the early 1890's they did make pneumatic pennies although no rideable ones survive. An example can be found at Coventy Transport Museum.
 
OP
Smurfy

Smurfy

Naturist Smurf
It's called an Eagle and they are an utter b****rd to ride

http://www.metzbicyclemuseum.com/Bike5a.html
Ahhhh, shame they're so horrible to ride! I've fancied a high-wheeler for years, but the propect of 'coming a cropper', or 'taking a header' on a Penny Farthing scares the *%$£ out of me. Is a Penny Farthing the best option for the aspiring high-wheel rider? I live in Leeds, which means fearsome hills and the need for brakes, although East towards York is much flatter.
 

warthog

Member
I am interested in the benefit of of pneumatic tyres on an ordinary - I tried a puncture proof solid tyre ages ago and it was dreadful. A pneumatic tyre makes the ride more comfortable but also absorbs energy so the forward motion is not being wasted in trying to lift the mass of the bike over the obstacle, but a larger wheel will roll more easily over small objects. I wonder what Hilldodger's experiences of different tyre materials/ sizes are? As an aside there are so many cyclists who 'have always fancied a go on a penny" - what about organising paid events for local bike clubs? As far as I can see the only possibility at present is Beamish, and I can't get a reply from them.
 

Hilldodger

Über Member
Location
sunny Leicester
I am interested in the benefit of of pneumatic tyres on an ordinary - I tried a puncture proof solid tyre ages ago and it was dreadful. A pneumatic tyre makes the ride more comfortable but also absorbs energy so the forward motion is not being wasted in trying to lift the mass of the bike over the obstacle, but a larger wheel will roll more easily over small objects. I wonder what Hilldodger's experiences of different tyre materials/ sizes are? As an aside there are so many cyclists who 'have always fancied a go on a penny" - what about organising paid events for local bike clubs? As far as I can see the only possibility at present is Beamish, and I can't get a reply from them.
I used to do Penny riding courses but it could be a nightmare because of the many different sizes of machines needed. I was asked to do a couple of club nights but declined - you need to treat Pennies with a LOT of respect or you will get hurt and they are not something you just jump on and ride safely in that kind of environment.

Early solid tyres were/are much different to modern ones because they are just that, solid. Roding an early safety with them on somewhere smooth like Herne Hill for instance can be a joy but anywhere uneven is unpleasant. On a penny though they are wonderful.
 

warthog

Member
Yes, I got all excited when I found an old article about your courses as I'm only down the road. I suppose it's not just a matter of adjusting a seatpost... plus all the legal responsibilities blah blah. I guess I'm just going to have to get the brazing torch out and start that build. Shame we don't have a 'build your own penny' course like SkillsTech in Brisbane...

And just how do you mount that backwards penny? Some sort of winch like the knights of olde?
 
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