After the bicycle started competing with the horse as a means of personal transportation, it also became popular as a foil for acrobats and other performers. Riding an ordinary (penny farthing) was an athletic feat much admired by the public, and tricks performed on such machines are very impressive. Circus troupes, theatrical and fairground performers and other entertainers soon started experimenting, both with safety bicycles and ordinaries. Safeties were more versatile, but tricks on ordinaries left a lasting impression on the audience, especially when it involved more than one rider on a machine.
This c1885 Rudge ordinary (penny farthing) was adapted in the 1890s to be used as a performer’s machine. It has some fascinating features, including pneumatic wheel rims – it’s currently fitted with cushion tyres – and a head pin, which, when retracted, allows the front and rear portion of the bicycle to separate. There are also pedals in the rear wheel so that once the two halves of the machine are split they can be ridden separately.
BICYCLE COLLECTORS CURATED ONLINE AUCTION, Xmas 2023
This Timed Auction is live from 24th December @ 2-30pm to 1st January, 2024. Highest bid wins.
NO BUYERS or SELLERS PREMIUM.
THE RESERVE IS THE START PRICE + BUY-IT-NOW OPTION.
INTERNATIONAL DELIVERY: NO PACKING FEES.
BIDDING INCREMENTS: Up to £1000 = £10. Over £1000 = £50. Over £2000 = £100
IT’S A CURATED AUCTION – Colin is the auctioneer and is available to chat to you personally during the auction (or before) by email, text message, phonecall, Facebook Messenger or Whatsapp.