With the Hunter EV Festival practice day coming up fast on 31 July 2014, we thought it would be worth taking a quick retrospective at where two wheeled transport options have evolved from. The electric bikes the school teams will be preparing, whilst unable to be powered by pedals during the event, will have the ability to trace some of their lineage back to older machinery that still gets around today.
On a recent weekend trip, we came across the Newcastle Vintage Motorcycle Club members out for a day trip to Morpeth Park, with a whole bunch of bikes spanning many years of technology and engine styles, including a blast from our past, a Suzuki GT750 water-cooled 2-stroke. But there was also older gear, including combined pedal+powered vintage bikes, allowing two different modes of propulsion, a feature shared by our bikes.
Naturally, seeing two wheel machines fitted with pedals is always going to attract our gaze. When we paused to check them out in closer detail, contrasting a 1912 BSA and Triumph motorcycle with our Stealth Fighter, more than one similarity emerged.
Can you guess which brand name component these machines share across that timespan?
Yep, it was the Brooks saddles. Supporting the backside of riders across the world, for over a century. Performance and drivetrains may have changed a lot, but not riders desire for a comfy seat. It's why we use a Brooks B17, a 100yr old design, but still working beautifully. And in case you're wondering what the pedals on these older machines were for, here's a quick snapshot.