Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Weird Bike Wednesday - Chainless Bike

1898 Chainless Bike (Photo courtesy of Velicious Bicycles)
A bicycle doesn't have to have a chain. Around 1890, shaft drive systems were developed in the United States and in Great Britain. Shaft drive bicycles were first manufactured in the United States in 1893. Columbia put a strong marketing effort behind shaft driven bicycles in 1897. Sales were respectable in 1898 and 1899, but nowhere close to the sales of chain driven bicycles. Many top racers, including Indy's own Major Taylor won on shaft drive bikes, and even set world records. Their popularity was short-lived, and they soon fell out of favor. Periodically, attempts are made to bring back shaft-drive without much success. In the eyes of most cyclists, they don't offer any significant advantage over chain driven bicycles. Today, someone looking for a lower-maintenance, longer-lasting alternative to a chain should consider a Gates belt.

No comments:

Post a Comment