Author Topic: Glastonbury Special  (Read 419 times)

Andyb1

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Glastonbury Special
« on: June 08, 2024, 09:15:08 pm »
I saw this today in Glastonbury town.   Very nicely built with good quality parts (Rohloff, discs, strong looking wheels and tidy welds and paint).  It must have cost a lot to make…..but I could not fathom out what it did.  There might be a seat or bed that folds out from the big steel circle…..  It looked like it had been ridden there and then parked outside the tea shop.  Any ideas?

UKTony

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Andyb1

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Re: Glastonbury Special
« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2024, 07:29:37 am »
That’s it!    The position of the handlebars were confusing me but the link you sent shows how they rotate to a lower position.  I wonder how many they have built?

Andre Jute

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Re: Glastonbury Special
« Reply #3 on: June 09, 2024, 10:04:36 am »
As a practical matter I'd like to lower the centre of gravity of that bike and make provision for a bit more than leg power for touring. I've calculated (guesstimated <tm>) that the bike as shown would limit me to 7% of the roads hills I ride from the Rome of West Cork, and be bloody dangerous on the downhills, utterly unstable because its centre of aerodynamic pressure would be permanently ahead of its centre of gravity.

This has more engineering and dynamic integrity. With only leg-power or a small electric motor would to cater for, it could probably be made as light a standard touring bicycle:

Humongous Motorized Unicycle de Luxe

There is of course a reason why, in all the decades since even inventors wore a tie and polished shoes, this large version of the unicycle hasn't replaced the diamond-frame safety bicycle: it looks weird.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2024, 10:12:50 am by Andre Jute »

in4

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Re: Glastonbury Special
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2024, 10:06:51 am »
The years have been kind to you Andre ;)

Andre Jute

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Re: Glastonbury Special
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2024, 11:05:01 am »
The years have been kind to you Andre ;)

I thought the tie and polished shoes would distract you but nothing escapes your eagle eye. Oh well, back to the drawing board.

Basically, the photo I sent is a penny-farthing design turned inside out with the farthing (a quarter-penny) dispensed with in the interest of economy. It could be called the "safety" version of the penny-farthing, in the same way that the first bicycles with two more or less equal-sized "small" wheels were called "safety bicycles" because when they crashed it was a shorter distance from the saddle to the road rash.

I probably should stress that while all this sounds humorous, the large unicycle with the rider inside the wheel is a proven design that demonstrably works all the way up to big block hemiheads and other excesses, ridden by big-hog thrill-seekers on American streets.

In case the question has already arisen in your mind, How do you steer the thing? Simple. You lean over, as you do on a bicycle. That means a rounded tyre, so it has no innate stability at rest.

I've ridden a penny farthing, from a museum in a parade, and can tell you I'd much rather hug the ground from inside the wheel than sitting on top of it. The next year I fixed up the museum's early Mercedes (Daimler-Benz) to drive* in the parade instead, and the curators sighed in relief because at least I wasn't going to fall off it in one of their precious period costumes and rip it.

* The biggest deal wasn't mechanical at all because the car was pretty much in as-new condition, tended by a permanent engineer who lived over the stables until it went into the museum about forty years before I was born -- it was acquiring the esoteric information necessary for starting and operating the car. On one of my rides I go faster downhill on my bicycle than double that car's top speed...

PS BTW, Andy, I love "Glastonbury Special": instant image of some kind of eccentric, the tension and mystery sustained while one discovers what kind of eccentric.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2024, 11:08:37 am by Andre Jute »