Author Topic: Weird and wonderful bicycles  (Read 1257 times)

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Offline Simon

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Weird and wonderful bicycles
« on: June 27, 2010, 08:09:33 pm »
I went to the Swindon Cycle Festival this afternoon, a celebration of cycling held at Lydiard Park.

The main attraction was the opportunity to try riding a variety of unusual bikes (although the word "bike" is used in a very loose sense here, seeing as some of them had more than 2 wheels).

The reclining bikes were very popular. I think there were 4 of them in all, and they were in constant use when I was there - I had to wait a couple of hours for the kids to relinquish one so that I could have a go.  I'd quite like one of these if it had 18 gears and a big pennant on the back so that Geoff could see me in front of him when he's driving his lorry  :)



I never really got the hang of this one. Apparently you're supposed to ride it like a skateboard, with a side-to-side motion providing the power to drive you forward.



I've seen quite a few of these on the streets in recent years. Compared to some of the other bikes on show, this one is very sensible - a way to get your child cycling, but in a way which ensures that the grown-up steers for both of them.



This one was a bit of a surreal experience. I got the impression that it wanted to lean out on a bend, when the sensible thing to do is to lean into the bend. Or maybe that was just because I'm used to a standard mountain bike with the seat, handlebars and pedals all in different relative positions.



Can you see what's wrong with this bike? It'd be more obvious if I'd posted a video of it, but sadly I haven't  :embarassed:



And this one surely tops the list for insane inventions. Cycling by committee, although fortunately only one of the riders can steer. What was the inventor smoking at the time, and where can I get some?  ;D



I also saw a penny farthing for the first time in my life, and took one for a few circuits of the track. That was probably the most challenging bike to ride (other than the cart that you sit on and use your hands to turn handles connected directly to the wheels, so you need to turn both handles at the same speed in order to move in a straight line - the challenge is in turning corners without doing a complete about-face). It's OK as long as you remember that you need to keep pedalling, because as soon as you stop pedalling, the bike stops or your feet come off of the pedals. It was also a bit disconcerting the way that the act of pedalling pulled the handlebars this way and that, making it a bit tricky to pedal and steer at the same time.

I'm sorry that I didn't get photos of the penny farthing or the cart thing with the hand-driven wheels.

But hey, I had a fun afternoon, and you all get to see a bit of what you missed  :)

There are some more photos, and a bit of information about a new product called BikeGlow which should be available in the UK shortly, on the Swindon Climate Action Network web site.
We are all in this together, but some of us are more in it than others (with apologies to George Orwell)

Offline poemogram

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Re: Weird and wonderful bicycles
« Reply #1 on: June 28, 2010, 12:08:34 am »
looks like u scored more personal goals than the 11 blokes kicking leather in South Africa..

Kept quite a secret I think - the bike fest - to we, we, freewheelers I s'ppose - hope it was well attended

Offline Tea Boy

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Re: Weird and wonderful bicycles
« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2010, 06:01:55 pm »
Now how good does that look and why didn't i know about it?

Note to self... keep eyes open more often.

Proves the point Swindon does have great things to , see and be part of.
Gardening tips: Always remember its brown side down, green side up.  If its knocking now it'll only go bang later

Offline Simon

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Re: Weird and wonderful bicycles
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2010, 10:02:22 pm »
Looks like this event wasn't very well publicised, if even Tea Boy didn't know about it.

In hindsight, maybe I and SCAN could have done more to let people know about it, e.g. putting something up here on TS to advertise it.   :embarassed:

Sorry folks.

Although shouldn't SBC have advertised it, seeing as I gather that it's something they organised? Or is this a case of doing more with less, i.e. SBC relying on the voluntary sector to promote their events?
We are all in this together, but some of us are more in it than others (with apologies to George Orwell)

 

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