Page:The Cycle Industry (1921).djvu/20

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.

lever. Following the methods already described, the laced and tangent spoked wheels were introduced. This type of wheel is the modern one that has survived all the others, and reverses the process employed for straight spoked wheels in tension. The flanges of the hub are drilled at right angles, the headed spokes are bent close to the head, and threaded through the holes made in the hub flange. The rim ends of the spokes are screwed and inserted in brass or gunmetal nipples, which are passed through holes in the rim from the top or outside and have heads which prevent the tension on the spoke from pulling them through the rim; washers are also placed under the heads and fitted in the bed of the rim to strengthen the rim at the points where this tension strain occurs.

Having now outlined the design of the wheels from boneshaker days to the present time, a task which was necessary to enable other items in the process of evolution to be clearly understood, we can return to the machine itself.

The tendency, in the main, from the early days to the zenith of glory attained by the high bicycle, or "ordinary" (as it was latterly termed to distinguish it from other types which were introduced) was to increase the size of the front driven wheel and reduce the size of the trailing wheel. In the earliest models of 1868-70 the driven wheel was always the larger, but gradually the diameters of the two wheels became estranged until a driven wheel of 60 ins. was followed by a trailing wheel of 18 ins. There was only one reason why the large wheel stopped growing, and that was because the length of the rider's limb defined the size of wheel he could bestride. It will therefore be almost unnecessary to explain that the further a rider was split up or the longer his legs, the greater advantage