The original product that set The Whippet Cycle Syndicate on the road to fame and fortune was a full suspension bike design developed to allow you to ride over cobbled streets on solid tyres. At the 2012 NAHBS Paul Brodie showed his beautiful replica of this bicycle.
The Science museum’s blurb describes the original as follows:
“The springing is accomplished by introducing a flexible spring coupling between the sloping backbone joining the rear hub and the steering head including the front forks, and the remainder of the framing which carries the rider, handlebars and pedal gear.
To keep the chain adjustment correct, the horizontal stays are hinged and, with a second hinged tube from a point near the steering head to a point about half-way down the seat pillar tube, form virtually a parallel motion.
The top tube which supports the handle bars is a cantilever from the seat pillar tube, and is enabled to rise and fall with the rest of the sprung portion by a double hinge connecting it with the steering head. This hinge does not affect the horizontal fontal movement of handlebars in steering.
The wheels have radial spokes and 0.625 in. solid rubber tyres: the pedals are rubber covered; the transmission is by pitch chain. The front wheel is 30 in. diam. and the back wheel 27.5 in., geared to 55.5 in. The pedals are adjustable from 6.5 in. to 5.75 in.; the wheel base is 43.5 in. and the weight 44 lb.”
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