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Bicycle Design: An Illustrated History
The bicycle ranks as one of the most enduring, most widely used vehicles in the world, with more than a billion produced during almost two hundred years of cycling history. This book offers an authoritative and comprehensive account of the bicycle's technical and historical evolution, from the earliest velocipedes (invented to fill the need for horseless transport during a ...more
Hardcover, 564 pages
Published March 21st 2014 by MIT Press (MA)
(first published January 1st 2014)
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I think if you aren't a bike rider or have an interest in design or mechanics, you may find this book positively boring -- it's not for the faint of heart. That being said, if you have any interest in the topics I mentioned, you will enjoy reading this book. It's not the type of thing that you digest all at once; I recommend reading it for an hour or so once a day and that's it. It will give you time to appreciate each topic they discuss - such as wheel design, brake evolution, and the steering ...more
Dec 26, 2014 Marc rated it really liked it
This book is worth it for the images alone--dozens and dozens of diagrams, patent illustrations, historic advertisements, etc. The amount of research that went into this confounds me as the authors leave no stone unturned when it comes to debunking myths, tracing firsts/origins, etc. The writing itself is a bit on the dry side and some of the chapters get pretty specific, but the depth and comprehensiveness are impressive. More a look at the development of the bicycle as engineering/scientific c ...more
I am wavering between four and five stars. Hadland and Lessing (there are two authors) have written a very strong technical history of the bicycle. Really, the only thing that was lacking was more explanations of variations of the bicycle that were invented to enable women to ride during the nineteenth century. I'd recommend this book for people who are seriously interested in bicycles and bicycle history, as it's quite dense. It is, however, also very readable. As someone who researches bicycle ...more
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