Building And Riding An Electric Hubless Penny Farthing Bicycle

With over 15 years of writing experience, Jonathan has had a passion for all things tech-related since watching Inspector Gadget as a child. He's disassembled countless appliances and managed to put a few back together, and one actually still works. When not writing, he can often be found playing video games or accidentally hurting himself tinkering in the garage.

Presumably built as a prop for what is sure to be the most fabulous steampunk costume of all time, Youtuber Chris Makes Stuff constructed an electric hubless penny farthing bicycle. For those of you unfamiliar, penny farthings are those ridiculous-looking old bikes from the 1880s with the giant front wheel. And it looks even wilder without spokes on that wheel!

In the video, Chris walks us through the entire build process, including a ton of custom fabrication and a lot of steel bending. He also discusses the various design challenges to overcome and his solutions. The result? A very impressive penny farthing with a front wheel that looks like it’s straight out of TRON (just needs some blue LEDs), and requires no pedaling.

Did you know penny farthings were originally designed to be ridden at high speeds since the large front wheel allowed for a further distance covered by each turn of the pedals? I don’t know about you, but when I think about traveling at high speeds, sitting on top of a terrifying penny farthing is NOT where I want to be doing it.

[via LaughingSquid]

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With over 15 years of writing experience, Jonathan has had a passion for all things tech-related since watching Inspector Gadget as a child. He's disassembled countless appliances and managed to put a few back together, and one actually still works. When not writing, he can often be found playing video games or accidentally hurting himself tinkering in the garage.