In this highly readable book, Nicholas Clayton charts the complete history of the bicycle, a machine that is still regarded as the most efficient means of translating human energy into motion. Covering about 200 years of its development, the author examines the technological developments that have led to the modern bicycle, including the hobby-horse, velocipede, boneshaker, tricycle, the pneumatic tyre, shaft drive, hub-gear, derailleur and many others. He also looks at differences in design, whether for ladies' bikes or for sport and off-road.The book is filled with interesting information and anecdotes and the author tackles such questions as why the penny farthing had such a large front wheel or the meaning of trail-and-fork-offset. As the bicycle continues to grow in popularity, both as an environmentally friendly travel solution and for sports as varied as triathlon and cyclo-sportive, this book provides you with all the answers you need about one of the most ingenious human inventions
Nick Clayton is an expert on cycle history and the author of various books and articles on the subject. He founded the International Cycling History Conference and has regularly presented papers. He was editor of the Boneshaker, the journal of the Veteran Cycle Club, for twenty years.