From the Car Guys
The Dawn of the Bicycle
I received a short letter the other d<!–more–>ay. May 11, 1998, actually. It was from Carrie Brown, who is the curator of the exhibition “Pedal Power” at the American Precision Museum in Windsor, Vermont.
Carrie writes, “In the 1800s, the high-wheeled bicycle was called the ‘Ordinary.’ It was almost exclusively a toy for wealthy young men.
“It was expensive. It cost a half a year’s wages, and it was dangerous, the most common accident being the header when the rider would fly over the handlebars. The Ordinary was difficult to mount, with its tall front wheel, and difficult to ride. But, it had certain advantages.
In an attempt to make cycling more universally accessible, bicycle engineers and manufacturers eventually developed what was called the Safety bicycle, which had two wheels of the same size, and chain drive and gearing — not unlike bikes that we have today.
For various reasons, however, the Safety bike did not catch on immediately. It was considered ugly, inelegant, inefficient, and uncomfortable.
Then, in 1889, a veterinary surgeon in Belfast, Ireland patented an accessory that revolutionized the bicycle, and, from that point on, Safeties began winning races, and the Ordinary quickly fell out of fashion.
What was the name of this veterinary surgeon, or, what did he patent?
- Here’s a hint: if I gave you his name you’d know
- This topic was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by The Iguana.
JB Dunlop. BTW, his patent was revoked 2 years after it was granted in 1888 because there was already a patent for pneumatic tires, issued in 1847 to a Scottish inventor (Robert William Thomson). While Mr. Dunlop benefited from his invention, he did not gain great wealth from it.
- This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by Kolo Jezdec.
Ok @Kolo Jezdec. you have the FunFavor and have 36 hours to post another Fun item….
OK, I am a retired math teacher, and I think Math is fun, so I’ll go with this one:
Greg LeStrong rode in a bicycle race a couple of decades ago, not the big one in Europe. . The route was an out and back course (from point A to Point B and back) and took four days.to finish. The first half of the race, Greg had a tailwind and was able to maintain a 20 mph pace. Coming back, Clancy was riding into the wind and could only average 15 mph. The second half took him 5 hours longer than the first half. What was the distance from point A to point B?
Extra credit if you know what my username refers to…
I dunno, as far as I’m concerned, it’s hard enough being tired of Mathematics, let alone re-tired…
I’m retired, but not from Mathematics…math is forever…uncountably infinite…but I digress.
300 miles is the distancecfrom A to B. The four day limit is relevant only as limit to the solution set. E.g., if the race was completed in one day, there would be no solution…that would have been more challenging..
x = time (hours) riding from A to B
x + 5 = time riding from B to A
20x = distance from A to B = 15(x+5)
Therefore x = 15hours and distance from A to be us 300 miles
Check that total time us less than 4 days. 15 hours + 20 hours = 35 hours < 96 hours.
Extra Credit.. I have to get to my sliderule when I get home…gotta vote now..
20x = distance from A to B = 15(x+5)
This is an assumption that not always true… Take a look at observatory hill. Let say we are riding from this point to this to this point and back. Obviously, distance is different to the nature of one way road. And for bike racing in pro division. It’s “there and back” but uses different paths to do so.
Just to add to the problem. There are oriented graphs in math (graph theory). And very often there is an edge from vertex A to vertex B but no edge from B to A. :P And are not talking yet about hills yet.
- This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by Mikhail.
Kolo Jezdec is czech for wheel knight (chess) …this required use of the loglog scale on my Pickett…
… which could be interpreted as a bicycle rider.
So to continue on this theme.
What does The ‘Burgh have to do with Czechoslovakia? And, this is not for Extra Credit, but part the Favor, how is this related to biking, as all FunFavors must comply to.
Wow, Three FunFavors and a stagnant tag over a week long…maybe it’s just the weather.
In fact the current FunFavor could be treated as a tag..in fact, in may have been one… you can take tgat as a hint… And for Extra Credit, bike tag it…
Regarding the comments of our astute gentlemanly colleague @mikhail (not to be confused with Commander Quinton McHale), there-and-back is not the same as out-and-back…at least in English; mein Russian ist nicht so gut gespracht. And, indeed, if the Favor was of TAB, the solution would be much more complex, requiring parameterizations relative to the state of the paths geographically and temporally..taking into account all sorts of relatavistic and quantum mechanical effects, and philosophical consideration ad infinitum (countable or uncountable, decideable or undecideable, NP-Compkete or otherwise, un so weiter…including General Topological underpinnings and Algebraic Topological substrates)
[I most relate to:
The numerical value of out and back in Chaldean Numerology is: 8
The numerical value of out and back
in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2
And more to the point:
An out and back trail is a trail that goes from point A (generally the trailhead) to point B then back to point A along the same path.
mentions a loop trail ( as well as our definition above), which is more a general type of path and closer to @mikhail‘s misunderstanding.
There is much to be said regarding modifying @Kolo’s Favor to the more general TAB…indeed, I had said much before my post was lost. Needless to say, but I will anyway, going down that rabbit should be left for a long leisurely ride among Komrads… with plenty of pee breaks (not to be confused with V-brakes, though they may be relevant)
That knee pain article sounds interesting…
What does The ‘Burgh have to do with Czechoslovakia?
Let’s up the ante. What do Pittsburgh, Czechoslovakia and Freddy Mercury have to do with one another?
First person to get the relevant photo wins this round.
Darn! I rode past there twice today, but had not seen your picture message, but could not stop anyway.
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