Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 133,118 pages of information and 210,773 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.
Note: This is a sub-section of the Stanley Cycle Show
1886 Athletic News Report 
THE STANLEY CYCLING EXHIBITION. Since it first occurred to the Executive of the Stanley Bicycle Club to add to the attractions of and entertainment at their headquarters, the Athenium, Camden Town, by exhibiting a few of the leading makes of bicycles in 1878, they have never scored such a decided success as on the present occasion, when the directors of the Royal Aquarium at Westminster placed this vast building at their disposal. It is rather singular that during the existence of the exhibition - save in one instance, in 1880 and 1881, when it was held at the Holborn Town Hall - it has never been twice held in the same building. From Camden-road it was moved to the Foresters' Hall, Wilderness Row, and thence, as the rapidly. increasing trade demanded extra space, to the Holborn Town Hall (twice), the Agricultural Hall (when it was held in connection with the Sportsman's Exhibition), the Albert Hall, and the Floral Hall (Covent Garden), where the most successful display, up to the present, took place; while last year the committee built up a huge tent on the vacant ground adjacent to the City of London School, on the Thames Embankment.
Since 1882, when a "split" took place between the Stanley Committee and the Agricultural Hall authorities, two shows of this description have annually been held In the Metropolis, and it is hardly necessary to state that, while both have suffered considerably, the principal losers have been those most closely concerned - the leading manufacturers, who have thus been put to the expense of supporting two rival exhibitions. Last year the leading firms in the trade determined to support neither, but on this occasion the leading manufacturers co-operated with the Stanley Committee, and the result has been the big success we have now so much pleasure in chronicling. After casting about for a suitable building - the Agricultural Hall not being available - the result was thee engagement of the Royal Aquarium. Large as the building is, the committee were compelled to limit the number of exhibits, while more than, one firm who applied late were left out in the cold. The only ground for complaint that can be found regarding the Aquarium is the position of some of the stands, which we must say were rather out of the way. It was, however, decided to make the allotment of positions by ballot, so that there could be no ground for complaint.
We cannot call to mind the name of a single manufacturer, of note who is not represented, but owing. no doubt, to the reports that have been circulated with regard to space, the agents do not muster in the force they have done at some of the previous shows. There is one good efffect arising from the rather limited space. It has prevented the exhibition of the same machines on more than one stand, while at the same time the leading firms were compelled to curtail their exhibits to one each of their standard patterns. This, however, will be appreciated by the would-be purchasers, who are easily able to find out any particular machine without being compelled to search through the mazes of perhaps a dozen or more machines of the same type. We do not remember to have witnessed at any previous exhibition so few useless "monstrosities;" indeed, we may confidently assert that nearly every novelty on view has some good point or other. Some of them, however, are rather crude, and open to improvement.
One noticeable feature is the increased attention to finish which characterises the machines, and even the smallest maker now turns out his work in a style which well bear comparison with the splendid cycles for which such firms as Messrs. Humber and Co., Hillman, Herbert, and Cooper, nudge and Co., and the Coventry Machinists' Co. have so long been noted. There is a notable absence, too, of the electro-plating which a couple or so seasons ago used to be so prominent on some of the stands, and altogether the exhibits, taken on the whole, present a thoroughly business like appearance, and seem as if they were constructed for something more than mere display.
With regard to the construction of the machines, the most notable change is the development of the Cripper or Automatic Steering Tricycles. Last season these were only to be found on the stands of Messrs. Humber and Co., and Marriott and Cooper. Now, however, there is not a mingle firm of note who has not gone in for the construction of one or more type of this popular pattern. There are not half-a-dozen of the old Sociable or side-by-side double tricycle, which have been fairly superseded by the speedier Tandem, which has now been so thoroughly re-modelled that the objectionable appearance which was associated with machines of this description has now been entirely obviate. With these exceptions few alterations save in minor details have been made in the productions of the standard patterns of the principal firms.
A couple of notable exceptions are the Crescent, of Messrs. Budge and Co., and the Straight Steerer of Messrs. Singer, the former being regarded by many as the best machine of its class in the exhibition, an opinion which we do not feel inclined to dispute.
Another feature is the number of safety bicycles of the Clover or rear-driving type that have been put in the market, the success obtained by Messrs. Starley and Sutton, who brought out a fine pattern of this class at the end of last season, having found a host of imitators. This is hardly a matter for surprise, as this form of bicycle is not only one of the speediest of the day, but it has the advantage of being safe in something more than name. This is more than can be said of more than one of the so-called safeties.
The Marlborough Club Tricycle of the Coventry Machinists' Company is another machine which promises to become one of the leading mounts of the season.
Before we proceed to give a brief glance of a few, of the leading exhibits, we must not fall to speak a good word as to the general arrangements. To commence with, we fancy the show has now found a permanent abode, as a more suitable venue than the Aquarium cannot be found, more particularly as the capacious annexe will in future be at the disposal of the committee. In spite of the usual "Saturday night crowd," little inconvenience was experienced by any of the exhibitors on the opening day, the stands being so judiciously arranged that there were few "blocks" during the course of the evening. The arrangements were excellent in every respect, and too much praise cannot be accorded the committee, especially the hard-working secretary, Mr. J. Dring, whose office has not by any means proved a sinecure for the last few weeks. Invaluable assistance was likewise rendered by the Aquarium staff, and to Messrs. De Pinna and Marks the manager and secretary respectively) the thanks of all concerned are due (or the manner in which they have utilised the resources at their command.
As regards the business done, though little is expected on the opening day, some good orders were booked, and there is every prospect of the exhibition proving most remunerative.
Messrs. RUDGE and CO., of Coventry, when they do anything, always do it well. It would, perhaps, be saying too much to state that their display was the best in the Aquarium. We can, however, say with confidence that there is not a single exhibit, no matter from what light it is viewed, that can surpass that of the largest firm in the cycling world. Again we have to regret the small amount of space at our disposal, which prevents us from doing full justice to Messrs. Rudge's productions, which include nine bicycles and fourteen tricycles. The first machine to strike the eye of the practical rider is an entirely new machine of the Cripper type, named the Crescent. The back portion is on the ordinary lines, but the front different from anything that we have seen. It is fitted with a 26in. steerer, thing after the Quadrant style, but fixed in a horizontal fork. It is, of course, automatic, and attracted more attention than any other machine in the show.
Several marked improvements have been made in the old favourite, the Coventry Rotary, which holds the twenty-four hours' record, notably, a method of steering which entirely does away with the old rack-pinion system and its objectionable noise and clatter. The same is also fitted to the tandem of this pattern.
Another novelty is the Bicyclette, a machine of the Rover type, but of which the original was invented and patented as long ago as 1880. Those, however, who saw that clumsy machine would not fail to recognise in its present prototype samples of the genuine Humber, tandems, crippers, and ordinaries, while among the racing bicycles is the Identical machine on which Richard Howell, the champion, made some of his memorable records. Adams's 24 hours' record Rotary may also be inspected.
We must not forget the Coventry Convertible Sociable, and, though this class of machine is dying out in face of the more speedy tandems, Messrs. Rudge have not yet found it advisable to discontinue its manufacture. A case of fittings, &c., complete the contents of the stand.
No higher compliment can he paid to the celebrated firm of HUMBER and CO., of Beeston, Nottingham, than that they have not deemed it necessary to produce a single novelty for 1886 - a best on record as far as the leading firms in the trade are concerned. It is not a case of "leave well alone." With such a genius as Mr. Humber at the helm, our readers may be certain that had he deemed any of his standard patterns could be improved upon. he would have quickly been on the job. He is a man who does not believe in being beaten.
Among the minor improvements that have been made is the fitting of a second spring to the automatic or Cripper, by which the whole of the vibration is entirely done away with, and a private trial over some of the roughest roads we could find near the metropolis has convinced us of the immense value of this invention.
Another item is the introduction of Trigwell's ball head to the original Humber tricycles and bicycles at a trifling extra charge. With regard to workmanship and finish little need be said, as the position gained by the firm years ago - the top of the tree - is fully maintained, and the whole of the contents of the stand - the firm, we may add, do not make show machines - are of such a character as to cause a feeling of envy in the breasts of many of their compeers.
We ought to mention that Rucker's Tandem Bicycle now figures among the standard patterns in a much-improved form. Every machine on the stand is sold, and, among others, the names of Messrs. Letchford (who is the owner of the lightest tricycle in the show, his ordinary Humber racer only weighing 32lb), English, Knox-Holmes, Revel, Furnival, Mrs. Allen, and other well-known names figure on the various show cards.
Messrs. MARRIOTT and COOPER'S novelty is a Cripper tandem, so constructed that it can be ridden easily by two ladies. The advantages of such an arrangement are manifest, as the great objection of the fair sex to tandem riding Is done away with. The machine is a very line specimen of cycle manufacture, and, we think, will be certain to find many friends. With this exception Messrs. M. and C. are content to rely on their well-tried patterns of 1885 for the forthcoming season - a very wise resolution, considering Mr. Webber's record from one to 20 miles on the path, Mr. Gossett's 231.75 miles in 24 hours on the high roads, and last, but by no means least, the marvellous ride, under most disheartening surroundings, of the senior partner from Land's End to John o' Groat's when he wiped out all existing records over this course. It is needless to observe that the machine used by Mr. Marriott is on view, and attracted an enormous amount of attention.
Among the sixteen exhibits are bicycles built to the order of Messrs. H. F. Wilson (2), M. J. Webber, C. W. Capern, and H. A. Venables: Safety and Genuine Humber tricycles for Sydney Lee (under 40lb). C. H. R. Gossett, Bruce Green, C. W. Capern, &c.
An improvement has been made in the Cripper by the introduction of a large front wheel, whilst the base of the machine has been considerably lengthened. The same remarks also apply to the Safety. The whole of the exhibits show workmanship of the highest class, and Messrs. M. and C. have every reason to be proud of their productions.
The COVENTRY MACHINISTS' COMPANY have a grand display, comprising 11 bicycles and 16 tricycles, which shows that the managers have gone thoroughly to work during the recess and have produced a grand stock of wheels. The name of the company is sufficient to guarantee such a minute attention to quality and detail as will ensure any of the machines affording satisfaction to the purchaser. With one notable exception, however, the company have not gone in for novelties - a fact which of itself proves the value in which their productions are estimated by the public.
A large amount of attention, however, has been paid to minor details, and every improvement that could be suggested by experience has been added to the old patterns. For instance, the Ranelagh Club, which made such a name during the past season, has been fitted with automatic steering, a fact which must gain it additional friends. Our old friends, the Sandringham and Imperial Clubs are still among the companies chief exhibits in both roadsters and racers. With regard to their novelty, the Marlborough Club, we cannot accord this splendid Cripper higher praise than by stating that in our opinion it is the finest tricycle ever turned out by the company.
A grand tandem on the same lines is another novelty, as is a Club tandem specially adapted for two ladies. Several important improvements have likewise been made in the ordinary Club tandem, while we anticipate that the Club carrier, a machine on the Humber lines, will gain some favour among those who patronise this class of machine. With regard to the bicycles little need be said, as they fully sustain the reputation gained by the company in past seasons. We might, however, add that among the two-wheelers is a safety fitted with Hall's patent springs to the front forks, an invention which ought to do away with the vibration felt by riders of this class of machine.
The ST. GEORGE'S ENGINEERING COMPANY, of Pope-street, Birmingham, evidently do not believe in the decadence of the bicycle, as they confine their exhibits entirely to the narrow-gauge machine. Few of the visitors will disagree with us when we state that this was the boss show of the bicycle proper in the Aquarium. The chief speciality is, of course their now well-known true tangent wheel, which came so well through the test of last season. Out of the many machines sent out in 1885, as far as is known, there was not a single case of a buckled wheel or even a broken spoke. This is saying much.
A notable exhibit is the racing bicycle ridden during the whole of the past season by Mr. B. Ratcliffe, of the Speedwell club, which, with the exception of the rubber being a trifle worn, is as good as the day on which it was turned out of the shop.
Among the other machines is a specialty for the American market to the order of Messrs. S. T. Clarke and Co., of Baltimore, a thoroughly sound roadster in every respect, and which is certain to find as many patrons in the home as well as a Trans-Atlantic market. Machines built for the following gentlemen are likewise on view:— C. V. Pembrook, N.C.U.; W. B. Brown, North Warwickshire B.C.; T. Cox, president Speedwell B.C.; Dr. Mitchell. London wheeler; as well as a beautiful racer which is to be sent over to Sydney for the use of Mr. C. W. Bennett, an old racing member of the Speedwell Club. A couple of well-made safeties complete the stand, which is under the management of that popular rider, Mr. C. A. Palmer.
Messrs. HILLMAN, HERBERT AND COOPER, of Premier Works, Coventry, and 65, Holborn Viaduct, have a splendid exhibition of 24 machines. Included in the number are nine new patterns for the current season, all possessing novelty either in design or detail. Side by side with the redoubtable Kangaroo of 100-mile record fame, stands a safety of the rear driving type. The frame of the latter is of the simplest possible form. A novel form of automatic spring is fitted in line with the side of the front fork for straight steering, and the machine possesses, in common with others made by the firm, a recently patented chain- pulley of very light and strong design, being built almost entirely of steel. The method of tightening the chain on this machine is also noteworthy, there being no loose joint.
Among the tricycles the chief novelty appears to be the Direct Steerer. fitted with the latest thing in guiding wheels, 28 inches in diameter. It is also fitted with four bearings to the driving axle. This same machine is shown also with a novel kind of rack and pinnion steering, and another with tandem attachment for second rider, which weighs a few pounds only, and does not necessitate an extra wheel, which looks more than usually promising. The steering gear can be so arranged that front or rear rider can steer, so that this tandem is suited for lady or gentleman, the latter steering behind, or for two of the sterner sex.
The other leading patterns of the firm are all well represented, from the old D.H.F. to the Kangaroo, but the powers of the leading safety are far too well known to need gush from anyone. With regard to workmanship and finish, little need be said, it being simply impossible to improve on either.
Though in a rather out-of-the-way corner, Mr. Bown's exhibit, which, as usual, is under the superintendence of Mr. W. Leach, attracts any amount of attention. A revolving stand, tilled with a most tasteful arrangement of bearings of all kinds, pedals, &c., &c., is a great source of attraction. It would be mere waste of time for us to go through a list of his well-known fittings, &c., the whole of which we may state are manufactured from the raw material on the premises. We will therefore only glance briefly at some of the many novelties. First comes the hub for the driving wheel of safety bicycles, made out of sheet metal, wonderfully strong and light, and which cannot fail to take with the trade. The detachable reversible handle bar for bicycles is another real good thing, as though handles thus fitted are as rigid as at present, they can be swung round or taken off at a moment's notice. No mean advantage when one has to leave a machine in doubtful quarters. The beams and lower driving wheels for safeties, though only just introduced, have already made their mark, while, when fitted on the forks provided by the firm, the wide tread on this class of machine is entirely done away with. The well- known double driving gear for all classes of tricycles has been considerably reduced in price.
A novelty, in the shape of an improved hollow tyre, is also put on the market, which is not only much stronger than those in ordinary use, but it also does away with quite one-third of the rubber, no slight advantage when weight is such an important consideration of the cycle of to-day. Mr. Loach likewise showed us a new method of fastening tyres to the rims of wheels. As we were not let into the secret of this, all we can say ix, that though we did our level best to tear the rubber out of a section of rim thus fitted, we could not succeed, though we managed to tear the rubber in half. This shows clearly that Mr. Bown has made a splendid hit in this direction.
For novelties, or at least new patterns, Messrs. SINGER and CO., of Coventry and Holborn Viaduct, must be awarded the palm. It is pleasing to see this old and much-respected firm showing such a determination to come to the front. Their exhibit is, indeed, a grand one, and we only regret that we have not sufficient space to go as thoroughly into details as these productions deserve. The machine which pleases us the most is their racing straight-steerer, a machine of the Cripper type, one of the most rigid machines of its class that has as yet been put upon the market, and, though so strongly constructed, weighs little over 401b. The roadster of the same class is almost equally as good, though the weight may be rather more than the go-ahead division of the present day may approve of. A great feature of this tricycle is the rubber buffer, which, under the matchless patent, Messrs. Singer fit above the large steering wheel, which effectually kills the vibration experienced in machines of its class. A very old friend appears with a new face in the shape of an extraordinary bicycle fitted with crypto gearing, which is certainly one of the novelties of the show, end which is certain, or we are very much mistaken, to be one of the "big booms" of the season.
Those who fancy safties are well cared for, as, in addition to the Challenge Safety and the speedy cycle, both of which obtained some favour last season, there is the Courier safety, a new machine of the Humber type, which impressed us very favourably. The firm have likewise adopted a ball head to several of their leading bicycles at a very small additional expense. Those who cannot afford to pay a long price for their mounts will find what they require on this stand, the low-priced cycles equalling in every respect with anything in the market. A new and improved edition of the Matchless is also worth notice.
Among the tricycles is the Springfield Tandem, a new machine of the Cripper class, fitted for two ladies; and a Humber-pattern Tandem, with the crossbar and four bearings of the straight- steerer. The anti-vibration steering head, which Is now fitted to the well-known central and side-geared "Apollos," is an admirable arrangement. Messrs. Singer have not forgotten the racing bicyclist, and among others shown is one built for E. M. Mayes, the famous Surrey racing span. Taken as a whole, there is no stand in the show on which such &splendid variety of high-class machines are shown, and none which have attracted a larger amount of attention.
Messrs. ELLIS and Co. still stick to their old love, the Facile - and with reason, seeing that the Pioneer Safety has found its way all over the cycling world. Of this little machine four patterns are shown, the Extra Special, the Export, the Special, and the Ordinary. The two latter are in the old line, but the others will be found a marked improvement on the original pattern, and we fancy few will feel inclined to disagree with us when we say that the first-named Is as near perfection as possible. The new patent detachable handle bar Is worth inspecting. B.S.A. bearings are now used to all parts save the points at the ends of the crank levers, which now work on long and adjust- able cones. The new method of lengthening the forks will at once strike the passing cyclist, and the immense gain of the recent alteration over the old pattern be at once manifest. We confidently predict that. In spite of the opposition of all kinds, Messrs. Ellis's little machines will retain their place in public favour as well in 1886 as they have done in the four past seasons. There are eleven machines of these classes on view, one of which has been built for the veteran, Major Knox Holmes.
Among the metropolitan makers few have come so quickly before the public as Mr. H. J. Pausey, of Clapham. His exhibits - three bicycles and seven tricycles - show plainly that he does not intend to stand still, and the majority show a marked improvement on his last year's pattern. A racing tandem, with but one chain, the pedals being connected in an ingenious and effectual manner, is his chief novelty, and a splendid specimen of work it is, weighing but 58lbs., and strong enough for anything. His racing tricycle is wonderfully light - 34lbs. - while the roadsters of both of the above patterns will bear comparison with the productions of far more celebrated firms. He also produces &safety bicycle on the same lines, while him racers and semi-racers are of equal merit, and have long been well patronised by South London riders, especially the Clapham Park cracks.
On the next stand are the machines of the HOWE MACHINE COMPANY, of Glasgow, one of which, named The Giant, is constructed to carry a tricyclist whose weight is 25 stone. The bicycles, safety and ordinary, are of the usual stamp - all well finished, serviceable machines, at a very moderate price. The tricycles are turned out in all the popular types - Clippers, Humbers, carriers, and tandems. All are turned out in first-class style, and should receive the attention of would-be purchasers.
Messrs. WARMAN and Co., of Coventry, have one of the few Sociables in the show, but it is one which is on an entirely new system. The inventor claims that it, when in motion, runs on two wheels, the steerer (front) and the driver, which is fixed between the riders. On either side are small balance wheels, so placed that they hardy touch the ground, but may he adjusted to do so at the will of the riders. `Whether this will prove the success anticipated by the inventor time alone will show. Loop and central-driving tricycles of the ordinary type are shown, as well as a safety and several children's tricycles, all well-made and serviceable.
The ROYAL MACHINE COMPANY, of Birmingham, again do themselves credit with a very, very fine display of Royal Mail cycles. The merits of their bicycles - one of each class are shown - are too well known, and we have only to point to past performances on both road and track for a testimony of their sterling worth. Several marked improvements have been introduced into their tricycles, which should bring their productions more prominently before the riders of the three-wheeler. The central- geared two-track is one of the best of its kind: while, for those who prefer it, the same machine is made with a loop frame. Following the fashion, they have produced a Cripper, which approaches in appearance very closely to the quadrant type. This is fitted with an automatic tilt, which throws the large steering wheel a trine out of the perpendicular when rounding a sharp corner, an advantage which must be manifest to the veriest tyro, and which is not found on any other machine in the show. The old Humber type pattern has been further improved, while a two-track tandem, a sort of double Coventry. Rotary, also merits a word of praise. Another improvement which we must not overlook is a patent break for tricycles, which does away with a Separate handle for such purpose, and which holds the break in any position desired by the rider without any strain on the hands.
For the first time that popular rider, DAN ALBONE, of Biggleswade, is an exhibitor at one of these exhibitions. and the "scorcher friend" deserves every credit for the general appearance and finish of the machines he sends up. He has followed the popular taste in him productions, and if he is not well supported during the coming season, he ought to be. His exhibitions include racing, roadster, and safety bicycles, as well as a pony trap fitted with bicycle wheels, and hearing a very light affair which can easily be converted into a trotting sulky.
The QUADRANT TRICYCLE COMPANY are a firm who centre all their attention and skill in perfecting a few standard patterns. Their exhibits are but five in number - Quadrant tricycles Nos. 8 and 9, tandems Nos. 11 and 12, and a racer for Faed. The singles are practically the popular patterns of last season, though several improvements as regards minor details have been made. Their success, however, was far too great to warrant any radical change in their construction. The tandems are on the same lines as Nos. 8 and 9, but with the requisite alterations to suit two riders. These are now shown for the first time, and are not only extremely fast machines (No. 11 having covered 131 miles in 40 minutes on the road), but where every other tandem is dangerous, these are absolutely safe, being front-steerers with large Quadrant front wheel. The whole exhibit is good and the workmanship and finish leave nothing to be desired.
Messrs. W. ANDREWS AND Co.'s (of Birmingham) principal novelties are a new Lever Safety, much on the principle of this Facile, but with an elliptical motion, which does away with that objectionable straight up and down one ; a new spring, which has an additional C shaped spring instead of a shackle, which, being jointed at both ends, is perfectly free. and consequently as easy wad flexible as can be desired; now bearings, which have large wearing surfaces, and must, therefore, wear well. We think the latter will certainly commend themselves to the public for their ease of running also, and can ourselves assert they are the best yet invented. The hack wheels of the machines of this firm are all fitted with a new arrangement, which makes them perfectly dust proof.
Mr. FRANK GIBBON, of St. John's Works. Wolverhampton, has a stand containing three bicycles and seven tricycles, under the charge of Mr. R. W. Potter, of the Wheeling Sale Rooms, Chancery-lane. The novelty is a Cripper tandem, almost a facsimile of that just produced by Messrs. Marriott and Cooper, which is suitable for two ladies. A notable feature in Mr. Gibbon’s singles - at least, those of the automatic type - is the folding handle bar, which enables a lady to easily enter or dismount from a machine of this class without having to scramble over the axle - an improvement which is certain to find favour with the fair cyclist.
A racer of the Humber type, which weighs only 38lb, is worthy of inspection. The whole of the Crippers are fitted with 26in. wheels. Another important item in the construction of these machines is that they are fitted with Gibbon's patent gear, which enables both tandems and Crippers to be taken through a doorway of 28 inches in width. Gibbons's patent automatic steering arrangement for ordinary Humber pattern machines is also on view, and from personal experience we are able to state that this is far in advance of every other arrangement of the same description that has hitherto been brought before the public. We note also that it has been considerably reduced in price. The Auto Tandem is convertible in more ways than one. In a few moments, by simply unscrewing a couple of nuts, it is turned into a splendid single, or it may be turned into a most useful carrier by removing the front seat. &c., and lashing a basket on in its place. The inventor claims that it is the most perfect tandem of its kind yet placed before the public, and a close inspection has not made us feel inclined to contradict this statement.
A novelty is a tandem bicycle by Messrs. J. HOWES AND SON, of Cambridge. The front part of this ingeniously-constructed machine is that of an ordinary Rudge Safety, but the backbone is continued on to the hind part of a Rover. The most singular part of the machine is that in the place of the ordinary mud guard of the front wheel, rods are brought half way down the backbone, where they are curved upwards and joined together by a pair of bicycle handles, thus giving the rider control over the front part of the machine, and rendering it rideable by one man only. The whole contrivance is wonderfully clever, and seems very likely to prove a success. We consider it the best form of tandem bicycle we have yet seen.
The CENTAUR CYCLE Co.. of Coventry, are exhibiting 15 machines, among which will be found two new types of single tricycles, an automatic and a side steerer, which possess special points well worthy of attention. The most interesting feature of this exhibit will be the display of six original and distinct types of tandems, two of theta shown for the first time. As the company are pioneers in the manufacture of this particular type of tricycle, and have for the past five years made it a distinct speciality, we may look for something good from them. The two new tandems are central- geared machines, upon the lines of their front-steering tandem, with which they have scored such a signal success. One of them is an automatic steerer with a unique auxiliary brake, applied by the foot of the rear rider. The other is a side-steerer with a duplicate set of steering handles for the rear rider. When not required to steer, a bicycle handle is used. When steering this is detached, and silo handles inserted, which can be done in a few seconds, and the front steering handle thrown out of gear. Both machines are very simple in their conversion, taking less than 25 seconds. Considering the great experience this firm has had in the manufacture of this type of machine - of which they, were the original inventors - we anticipate their new specimens trill prove a great success. The other exhibits consist of the company's well- known patterns, and the entire display reflects the fullest possible credit upon the energetic manager, Mr. E. Mushing.
Messrs. GRIFFITHS AND CO., of Priory Mill, Coventry. have several novelties on their stand. The Kaiser Safety Bicycle and Tandem Tricycle have the saddles mounted on a stringing seat pillar, balanced by a powerful spring, by which the position of the rider is automatically adjusted for either vertical action up hill or against wind, or for a sitting position when desired, without any conscious action of the rider or the alteration of any catch or lever. Minor points are- the mounting of the saddle 011 double Arab springs with a special tilting bracket; and, in the tandem. the general design of the frame, and the arrangement by which both riders steer or apply the brake. The swinging seat pillar also enables the rider to take a position :n which he can very advantageously use the long cranks and Mali gearing flow in fashion.
The Spinaway Tricycle's side gear and central gear, with handle-bar steering, introduced last year, with a spring-controlled, freely moving frame. are improved in detail, and fitted with automatic steering. The frame is also shown fitted to a Coventry Rotary tricycle, whereby the vibration from the small wheels is very greatly reduced.
The Loop safety bicycle has two chains a la Kangaroo, and has a special frame, the object of which is to give great rigidity to the crank bearings. The lower forks are made of %retitle, steel tube, and are joined in a loop between the wheels. Thus each fork supports the other, and the tubular section enables a very strong frame to be also light. The back wheel is made extra-large (24in.), to reduce vibration. From personal experience, we can draw attention to the immense advantage gained by Messrs. Griffiths's inventions. and feel confident that as soon as their merits have been discovered by the main body of riders, they will take their place among the leading cycles of the day.
The novelties of the PATENT TRIANGLE TRICYCLE CO., of Brighton, are:— The new patent Safety Triangle Tricycle, open-fronted front steerer, on three large wheels, steering with the two front wheels (the Convertible Tandem is on the same principle): and the Brighton Patent Safety Chair, an elegant little carriage on four wheels, very light and specially adapted for the use of invalids ladies, and those averse to the exertion of pedal: and who can get a friend to propel them.
Mr. W. TRAVERS, of 3a, York-terrace, Clapham Station, S.W., shows two machines; one a 5lin. light roadster bicycle (27lbs), with improved butt-ended laced spokes, which form a perfect tangent, not one of which has been known to buckle or break: balls all over, hollow throughout, etc. (price, £17 10s.), built for H. C. White, Clapham Park B.C. and a 53.5in. racer, which has gone through two seasons' hard racing on all sorts of tracks, and was exhibited last show, in which it was the lightest bicycle exhibited. Mr. Travers's- new pattern tricycle is not yet ready.
The LONDON CYCLE SUPPLY ASSOCIATION Limited, have three exhibits, the Gordon Tricycle, in three forms -side-geared, central-geared, and Cripper. The improvement of the side-geared machines consists in putting a noiseless chain-steering apparatus and Leni's patent stuffing-box to both handle-bars, and non-vibrating spring head, to take up at any time the little wear caused by friction. The central-geared tricycle, in addition to silent steering and Leni's. stuffing-box, as above, will have the steering-rod brought low down on a level with the pedals, thus making it an open-fronted machine. The Gordon Cripper or Automatic Steering Tricycle will be what no other tricycle is - really an automatic, because by Leni's stuffing-box arrangement the handle can he placed at any angle, and will there remain, it being thus easy to get into and out, as there will be no strong spring to fly the handle back. It will also have the Gordon non-vibrating spring to handle-bar and powerful fort hand brake. The Gordon tricycles made a name for themselves last year, thus this season's, productions will be found far in advance of the old patterns.
The NORTH OF ENGLAND BICYCLE COMPANY, of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, show:— One Northern No. I. hollow handle-bar, spade handles, etc.: one Northern No. 2, cow-horn handle-bar, bright parts plated; their special Northern safety bicycle, with Bown's patent bottom, hub bearing, and all latest improvements; the Automatic Steerer Tricycle, Humber pattern ; and Convertible Tandem Tricycle, Humber pattern, which can be converted into a single machine in a few seconds. All thoroughly sound, well-finished cycles.
Among the genuine novelties is the safety bicycle of Messrs. SHELLARD AND CO of Bristol. Its general appearance, with the exception that the steering handles are considerably behind the head, is that of an ordinary safety, but it has what may be termed a second backbone, at the end of which the pedal and the lower cogwheel (only one chain is used) is placed. It is tilted with automatic steering, and the inventors claim for it advantages not possessed by any other machine of its class. It is light, the roadster only weighing 30lbs, and the racer 20lbs. We should hardly like to commit ourselves to a definite assertion as to its merits, but fancy that it is destined to make its mark. The improved ball bearing's just introduced by the same firm merit more than passing attention.
The SPARKBROOK MANUFACTURING COMPANY, Limited of Coventry, make a leading feature of their well-known tandem. which they claim, with lair show of reason. to be the only superior to the original !lumber tandem. The greater rigidity of the frame and axle, owing to the use of the cross-tube, and the consequent reduction of labour and vibration to the front rider, are decidedly noteworthy, and will go far to recommend this machine to would-be purchasers. The Cripper, or Automatic Sparkbrook Tricycle, is also entitled to some kudos for its departure from the orthodox pattern by the use of a 26in. front wheel. It is suitable for riders of either sex, and with a most marked absence of vibration. This machine bids fair to take a high place among first-class tricycles.
The Sparkbrook Bicycle ii another introduction for this year, "true tangent" spokes. hollow felloes, balls to both wheels air pedals, and weighing only 34lbs. complete, it ought to sell well at the very moderate price of £17 10s. This is really a grand machine, and one which, if we mistake not, will be largely patronised by the leading road riders. The finish and workmanship of the whole of the exhibits leave nothing to be' desired.
One of the most taking %Lards in the show is that of Messrs STARLEY BROS., of Coventry, whose famous Salvos are household words wherever the three-wheeler is known. Their exhibits are 15 in number - 12 bicycles and three tricycles. For the first tune after many years' catering for the three-wheel trade, the firm comes forward as manufacturers of bicycles, the recent additions to their works having allowed them space to devote some attention to this branch of the trade. En pasant, we might observe that this does not look as if the trade in two-wheelers was falling off to any extent. The bicycles on this stand are everything that a road tither could desire, at a very moderate price.
The Puck safety is very cleverly designed, and is, by a smart arrangement, so constructed as to suit any adult rider unless he be a veritable stilt of Anak or a dwarf.
The feature of the exhibit is the Psycho, which was introduced at the end of last season, and which is shown in several forms. The Semi-Racer struck us as being a wonderfully fine specimen of its class, both as regards finish and construction, and should be able to move "just a few."
Messrs. Starley have also introduced a folding handle, to meet the views of their lady patrons. The ordinary front steerers are greatly improved by the addition of a patent non-vibrating head, an innovation which might well be followed by other makers.
The Psycho tandem, which is simply the addition of a backbone fitted a trailing wheel, figures prominently, and is certain to find favour. A carrier somewhat on the Rover lines is also shown. We may say that perhaps the greatest novelty produced by the firm is the adaptation of an automatic steering arrangement to a bicycle. This is a rather delicate matter on which to offer an opinion without a trial, but it seems to us as if it would have the same effect that we have found on a Humber tricycle, and prove of immense advantage.
The wheel base of the ordinary Salvo has been extended, a fa-t which ought to greatly improve the old favourite.
JOSPH LUCAS and SON, of Little King street, Birmingham, exhibit the following, new designs for this season: King Safety Head Lamp, specially designed to overcome the vibration of safeties, Crippers, tris., and others. A first-class article. The Coventry oil-can. The pipe is a tap, at: when turned across the body of the can is off and when extended it is on for use. A Safety Lamp Bracket, for using ordinary lamps on safeties. The Atlas Spanner; a turnscrew as well as a spanner. The Friend in Need Tyre-fasteners, which consist of eyeletted strips of leather with pieces of copper wire for temporarily fastening loose tyres. Hercules Spoke Grip. A new patent, which bids fair to supercede those already in use. A well-arranged stand is fitted up in Messrs. Lucas's well-known style.
SAMUEL LLOYD of Wolverhampton, shows several tricycles adapted for ladies and juveniles, all of which are well made and put on the market at a very moderate price. Ile also exhibits several remarkably cheap bicycles. Owing to inability to turn the goods out in time for the show he has been unable to be represented by several of his standard patterns for adults.
A season or so hack the name of TRIGWELL, WATSON and CO, of the Merlin Works, Brixton Rise, was unknown in the trade. Now, however, they take a position almost second to none, outside Coventry and Nottingham at least. Their cheap speciality is of course their well-known patent ball-steering head, which has now been adopted by many of the leading makers, notably Messrs. Humber & Co., for their standard patterns. The whole of their bicycles and safeties are thus fitted. Another novelty is the Non-Vibrating Handle Bar, a wonderfully clever invention, consisting of the division of the bar half-way between the head and the handle, and the introduction of a rubber socket. We may point out that, though having the effect intended, it in no way decreases the strength of the bar, and the rider is still at liberty to pull as hard as ever when riding stiff hills. To the riders of safeties this must prove a great boon.
They also introduce an excellent system of fork extension for safety bicycles fitted with Kelsey's well-known brackets. Their greatest novelty is a system of coupling a safety bicycle with a front-steering tricycle, thus ensuring an almost perfect tandem. Their exhibit is a very taking one, comprising the tandem, two tricycles, and six bicycles, the whole of which are constructed and finished in a style second to none in the show.
Opposite is a display which, if not displaying such a taking appearance as regards glitter and fancy painting, by many is regarded as one of the best in the Aquarium. We allude to that of the SURREY MACHINISTS’ CO of Great Suffolk-street, Borough. Among the bicycles are a roadster and a racer built for the ex-Stanley secretary, the well-known Johnny Price. The mere fact that this gentleman has patronised the S.M.C. means something. A splendid racing tricycle of the Humber type, built for H. C. Sharp, is a work of art, and weighs but 331b. Another of the same class has been secured by A. C. Bower, of the London Wheelers. To our mind the Humber Roadster of this firm is the gem of the show, and, in common with the makers, consider that the introduction of a cross-bar and four sets of bearing a great improvement on the ordinary pattern. Tandems, both racing and roadster, of last season are also shown, both of which are improved in minor details. Their two-track roadster is, however, one of their new patterns. The company make no departure from the principles on which they have constructed their machines for several seasons—the lightest possible framework consistent with strength, and the largest possible quantity of rubber. A sample is shown of what, if we are not mistaken, will prove one of the most useful novelties of the year a crank adapted both for ordinary and safety machines, with a variable throw, and which can be altered by the rider while progressing at full speed. We must confess our inability to describe this undoubtedly clever invention, but, as far as we can judge, it really is equal to what is claimed by the inventors. The company hope to be prepared to place it on the market in the course of a few weeks. Mr. J. S. Smith, the courteous manager of the company, is in charge of the stand, and he has good reason to be proud of his charge.
Messrs. BAYLISS, THOMAS and CO, of Coventry, are a firm which, up to the present season, had not moved with the times, and bade fair to be outstripped in the race for public favour by younger rivals. This season, however, they have made a move in the right direction, and, though their fine exhibit displays few what may be termed novelties, it shows that the firm are making a bold effort to regain their old popularity. The tricycles are all fashioned on the now fashionable lines, and are all finished in the well-known style which always characterises their productions. Nine tricycles, three safeties, and three ordinary bicycles comprise their exhibits, of which only the Acme Safety calls for any special comment. In the front wheel of this bicycle is a second wheel, of about two-thirds the diameter of the outer one, to the rim of which the spokes, about six inches in length, are attached. Though the invention may add to the strength, we cannot say much as regards its appearance, and do not fancy that it will take, unless with those who go in for curiosities.
But two machines were on Mr. DEARLOVE’S stand when we visited it - a very handsome Humber pattern tricycle, fitted with Thresher's steering link, au invention which we are surprised has not been more generally adopted by the trade for this class of machines, as it practically does away with every element of danger and places them perfectly under the control of the rider, even when progressing at the highest possible rate of speed, while at the same time it detracts in no way front the appearance of the machine. Mr. D.'s other tricycle, the Phantom, is entirely new, and is the first machine of its class we have seen. It is constructed on very simple lines. The head part is that of a Rover bicycle, to which is attached a cross-piece, fitted with a couple of independent wheels and bicycle steering. The steering is rendered automatic by a very ingenious method, and altogether it strikes us as being very good goods. The ordinary roadster will not weigh more than 501b.
Messrs. J. STASSEN and SONS, of Euston-road, who rank among the original manufacturers of cycles, but who have not been heard of much of late, are now moving with the times. Their 1886 pattern is an automatic tricycle on the most approved lines, a very fine machine of its class, while a tandem on the same lines is of equal merit. The telescopic machines of last year have been greatly Improved and lightened. They likewise have on view a useful-looking safety of the ordinary pattern.
JAMES CARVER, of Nottingham, appears to follow closely in the wake of his fellow-townsmen, Messrs. Humber & Co., and his three bicycles and nine tricycles are all turned out and finished in that style which has always characterised the cycling productions of the lace town. There is nothing particularly novel on the stand, which is under the charge of Mr. Horace Bell, as, like his great rivals, he has been content to leave well alone, and trust to his well-tried machines of 1885 for another season. Suffice it, therefore, to say that those who want a thoroughly sterling machine at a very reasonable price cannot do better than patronise Mr. Carver, who, we believe, shortly intends opening in London.
Of the exhibitors whose names figure on the catalogue for the first time are those of Messrs. COOPER, KITCHEN and CO. of 4. Finsbury Pavement, who have succeeded the old-established firm of the South London Machinists' Company. A marked change for the better characterises in every respect the productions of the new firm over those of their predecessors, while at the same time the moderate prices of the latter are strictly adhered to, these in many instances being 20 per cent. less than those of many of the big houses. Their leading exhibit is the Moorgate No. 4 tricycle, a splendid species of the genies Cripper, which embodies many notable improvements. The other tricycles shown by the firm are of the most fashionable types. and of these, as well as the six bicycles which present no novel features (and are none the worse for that), we cannot pay them a higher compliment than to say that they cannot he beaten at the price, and are far in advance of many for which a much higher price is asked.
After the grand performance of Messrs. STARLEY AND SUTTON'S novelty of 1885, the Rover Bicycle, it only follows that this machine should prove the centre of attraction on their well-assorted stand. The machine, too, has been considerably improved during the recess, and if imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, Messrs. S. and S. have no reason to be dissatisfied because the success of their invention has caused several imitations to appear. The improved Rover, however, will want a lot of beating when it meets any of its rivals on the road. The Meteor Tandem, two of which are shown, are splendid machines, though to our fancy the three Automatics were the gems of the stand; but a tricycle on the same lines as the Rover bicycle should not be passed over, especially by those who are bent on speed rather than pleasure. A couple of Coventry chairs and carriers help to fill up one of the most attractive exhibits in the Aquarium.
"Handsome" is not a term which can be applied to the productions of the HANSOM TRICYCLE COMPANY, of Waltham Cross, but their four tricycles, we are told, though "rum 'uns to look at, are good 'uns to go." They are indeed "rum 'uns" to look at, and we dare not venture on any attempt at description. We regret we were not able to have a trial on one which was placed at our disposal, but those who did so speak in the highest terms as to their merits, and bear out the statement of the inventor that dead points are entirely done away with, while over the rough granite sets outside the building the machine travelled as easily as on a smooth road. We must therefore recommend to would-be purchasers the old proverb, "Do not judge by appearances."
It was not until leaving the building that we came across the exhibits of the BICYCLE AND TRICYCLE SUPPLY ASSOCIATION, whose machines we had deemed had not put in an appearance. Both the Matchless Tricycle and the older favourite, the Omnicycle, now appear under a new form as Crippers. Several specimens of the Matchless Bicycle are shown, as well as the Plectocycle - a central-geared tricycle, which is so arranged that in a couple of minutes it can be taken through the narrowest doorway.
Mr. J. E. HOLLOWAY, of 127, Westminster bridge-road, the inventor of the Dart tricycle, on the opening day had only one machine on view, a front- steerer named the A 1. This is a machine of an entirely new design, the entire weight being suspended below, instead of being above, the axle, as is the case in every other machine in the market. For this the inventor claims absolute safety. The chief feature of the machine, however, is the tangential wheels, which drive entirely from the rim of the machine. Far fewer spokes are used than in the ordinary pattern, while not only is the wheel rendered far stronger, but it is also much more rigid than those at present in use. The elongated spring cranks are another novelty. These increase the leverage according to the pressure on them, but they are of such a character that we hardly like to commit ourselves to an opinion as to their powers. If Mr. Holloway's word is to be taken, these will completely revolutionise the manufacture of cranks, and, as far as we can judge without trial, we see no reason why ' such should not be the case. If they do turn out to be a success, it will be good-bye to two-speed gearing. Mr. Holloway has likewise patented an oval cog-wheel for the chains of tricycles, and here we believe he has a real good thing.
What catches the eye first on Messrs. T. SMITH AND SONS' stand is a most extraordinary-looking tandem, which puzzled us greatly. and which can only be meant for a carrier. As, however, when we visited the stand we could find no price lists, or anyone in attendance, we were compelled to give it up. The firm likewise produce an automatic, a very handsome machine, otherwise there are very few alterations made in last season's patterns.
We now conic to the exhibits of J. DEVEY, of Wolverhampton, the working man's friend, whose prices are fully 33 per cent. below those of the big Coventry firms. Mr. DEVEY is a man who has found the principle of small profits and quick returns pay so well that he now stands out as one of the largest manufacturers in the trade. His exhibits comprise samples of every fashionable shape in tricycles. The Royal Express, a machine of the Cripper type in both its single and tandem forms, being the cheapest machine of the class in the hall. Indeed, the same remarks may apply to every machine on the stand.
A splendid assortment of lamps, as may be expected, grace the stand of Messrs. SALSBURY and SON, of Long Acre, who are justly considered to be at the top of the tree in this branch of the trade. The chief feature is the spring-back lamp, specially designed by Mr. Salsbury to meet the jolting produced by safety bicycles and the small wheels of tricycles, a lamp which we do not scruple to say, from personal experience, is the best that has ever been placed in the market. A marked improvement is also made in the combined back and side lights. The various lamps are tastefully arranged, and the whole exhibit is one which reflects the greatest credit on the manufacturers.
J. HARRINGTON AND Co. have an elaborately decorated stand for the display of their Arab springs and other novelties, including spring chairs and seats. An automatic steering apparatus for attachment to Humber pattern tricycles is also to be seen, as are several other articles which this gentleman has brought before the wheel world. We have now gone through the exhibits of the principal firms, but there are numerous others who only show one or two machines, as well as agents and dealers In accessories, respecting whose exhibits want of space compels us to curtail our remarks.
To commence with, GOY (Limited) is to the front again with a big display, and, besides a well-selected assortment of machines, they have a stall fitted with everything that a cyclist can require. The new hire purchase system is again in full swing.
Messrs. BROOKS AND CO. have several novelties in cyclists' saddlery, notably a combined spring and saddle on the American principle, which is now rapidly coming into vogue in this country, and bids fair to supersede the present springs and saddles. Messrs. Brooks's ordinary goods are the best in the market, while as regards pouches, valises, bells, wrenches, &c., it is hard indeed if they cannot satisfy the requirements of anyone.
J. L. HANCOCK, of Goswell-road, of non-slipping tyre celebrity, has a splendid collection of rubber goods, and his stand will well repay inspection.
LAMPLUGH and BROWN'S goods are up to their old form, and are too well known to need praise or puff.
Recognising the increasing taste for photography, Messrs. HORNE and THORNETHWAITE, the eminent opticians of the Strand, have a stand devoted to suitable goods of this description.
SNELL AND BROWN, of Birmingham, have a novelty in lamps, specially constructed to burn paraffin, and which is said to consume less than a penn'orth of oil in sixty hours, while at the same time it is practically inextinguishable. Several other excellent patterns of ordinary lamps, as well as a collection of the usual cycling accessories, are also shown by this firm.
The feature of the exhibit of the BIRMINGHAM SMALL ARMS CO.'s stand are Kelsey's Patent Safety Bicycle Crank Bearings, which are now manufactured by this firm, and which it does not require a skilled mechanic to see are equal, if not superior, to anything of the kind in the market. The B.S.A. patent bearings, and a high-class collection of steel stampings are also shown.
WOOD AND CO., of Surbiton, have invented a system of steering which is far in advance of the old rack and pinion system. The steering-rod is carried between a couple of rubber rollers, one of which is connected with the handle; all jar, vibration, and rattle is thus done away with. The Invention fitted to an ordinary Sparkbrook tricycle.
A new signal Cyclometer, fitted to a Humber tricycle, is shown by a firm calling themselves the SIGNAL CYCLOMETER COMPANY, but from the address we fancy that Mr. M. D. Rucker has something to do with it. It is a capital contrivance, rings at the end of each nine, while the face is visible to the rider. It also has the merit of cheapness, the price being less than half what is now charged by other constructors.
The BICYCLE AND TRICYCLE SALEROOMS COMPANY, the largest dealers in the trade, only exhibit one machine, a Safety, the work of Jack Keen, a cleverly designed little machine, which, though in the rough, promises well. The company have an office, where Mr. Lee, the manager, is in attendance to buy, sell, or exchange machines. We night add that the company have lately added the letting out on hire of cycles (new machines only) to their business.
Hard by, Messrs. TODD and SHIPTON are to be found at the joint offices of the N.C.U. anti the C.T.C., each eager to receive subscriptions and answer inquiries as to the respective institutions.
Mr. G. D. HOWARD, the Dyer Buildings agent, has a stall of sundries, near which is stationed the representative of Messrs. TOWNSHEND AND CO., of Redditch, who have just placed in the market a combined saddle and spring suitable for either bicycle or tricycle. The saddle is stretched on a frame of cast steel wire, with a couple of coil springs under the hinder part. As far as we can judge, this is a most valuable invention, and one which should find its way on to many of the machines in use. The price, too, is little more than what is usually charged for a saddle.
J. BUTLER, 1. St. .John’s Wood, agent, has a well assorted display of sundries, and naturally make, a feature of his now well-known pedal slippers, which combine the merits of the rat-trap with the comfort of the rubber.
The EAST LONDON RUBBER CO. display samples of their goods, which are of an excellent class.
J. HARRISON, of Kensington-street. Birmingham, the king of the bell trade, is well to the front, as usual. His most recent introduction is the combination stop-bell, which combines the advantages of the alarm and continuous ringing, though the latter, at the rider's will, can he easily stopped by a very simple arrangement. Bells of all the well-known patterns figure on his stand, which is fitted up with a well-selected assortment of wrenches, oil-cans, and steel balls (one of Mr. Harrison's specialities), and all other cycling sundries.
H. MILLER, of Birmingham, has also produced a new lamp, for which he claims the same advantages as Snell and Brown, and it really seems as if oil as a cycling light will soon be superseded by paraffin samples. Mr. Miller's Monarch, Reliance, Winner, and other lamps are also to be seen here.
Mr. A. MARKHAM does not exhibit machines this year, but confines his exhibit to a case of cycling fittings and accessories, but his representative informs us that a novel tricycle will be on view before the end of the week.
H. MYDDLETON, of Cornwall-road, Bayswater, is the only exhibitor who makes a speciality of enamels.
Among the remaining exhibitors of machines, we were struck with the excellent finish and workmanship of the racing bicycle and tricycle of Mr. E. C. CLARKE, of Derby, which attracted a lot of attention, and which are as light as anything in the show.
J. F. WALTERS, the Bayswater agent, has an Iroquois tandem, a machine on the Humber lines, on view; and opposite, Messrs. ASHTON BROS. of Clapton, show the well-finished bicycles of Mr. H. James, of Birmingham, of which they are the sole London agents.
HART, SONS and PEARD exhibit three Grosvenor tricycles - tandem, sociable, and Cripper - all of which are new this season.
G. TOWNEND, of Coventry, as usual, comes out strong in the way of juvenile tricycles, in which trade he has got the lead. A dozen of pretty little machines are shown, at prices ranging front £3 10s. to £11 10s.
The only new thing on the stand of the CAROCHE COMPANY is a Cripper - a good-looking and serviceable machine. They also show their last season pattern, the Gem, as well as a nice loop-framed front-steerer.
J. HARRISON, of Winchester, has a "variable throw" pedal, which, like that of the Surrey Machinists' Company, we are not quite able to understand. In this instance we were informed that the variation was automatic.
Mr. MILLS, of the Borough, shows a Pantograph Safety, whatever that may mean; but it looks such a complicated arrangement that we do not fancy that it will ever become a favourite.
Mr. FRANK H. PARKYN, of Green-lane, Wolverhampton. exhibits eleven machines, notably a Cripper pattern tricycle, which has a new and simple arrangement for controlling the steering wheel, and for which he has applied for a patent. The exhibits also include a good loop-frame tricycle, with ball bearings throughout; four classes of bicycles, ranging in price from £16 down to £4 10s.: and a safety bicycle with Bown’s latest pattern bearings, are also on view. In juvenile tricycles Mr. Parkyn exhibits a Cripper pattern, quite new this season, and also two loop-frame tricycles.
A passenger cycle, the invention of Mr. READ, of Upton Park, is a good thing. It consists of a two-wheel seat, to which is attached a backbone, which can he made to fit any ordinary or safety bicycle to order. The rider, therefore, sits on a bicycle in front, and draws the bath-chair-like seat behind him.
Messrs. HERBERT SMITH & CO., of Broad-street, E.C., made a very good show with the cycles of T. H. Maconochie, of Wolverhampton, for which they are the sole London agents. The Auto and Humber pattern tricycles are both high-class machines.
MAYNARD, HARRIS and CO, exhibit samples of the once popular Devon tricycle and the Devon safety bicycle.
L. APPLETON, of 1 Camden Town, has invented a safety wheel-brake for Humber-type tricycle, as well as a combined step and foot brake for the game class of machine, both of which are fitted to a tricycle.
The COVENTRY CYCLE COMPANY make a grand display. but there is nothing about their productions which calls for special comment.
LINLEY and BIGGS exhibit a springy little tricycle called the Whippet, so springy, in fact, that we fear, from the slacking of the chain when the exhibitor was dancing up and down on it, that it will not realise expectations on the road any more than a springy looped-framed tricycle did exhibited by the same firm 12 months ago.
D. G. WESTON, the inventor of central-geared machines, has two thoroughly sterling machines on view, a single and a tandem on the old lines, both of which merit attention.
The CRYPTO CYCLE COMPANY have half-a-dozen tricycles fitted with the Crypto Dynamic gearing, the only arrangement of its class which seems to have stood the test of time.
HICKLING and CO, of Maideultead, only show seven machines (four Pilot bicycles), which have been far too long before the public to need praise from anyone. Mr. Hickling has likewise produced an automatic tricycle, as well as a two track machine of the same class. It is needless to state that all sustained the well-earned reputation of the old firm.
Lovers of the Otto will find some consolation fur the collapse of the OTTO BICYCLE COMPANY in what is termed a Bicycle, a machine very much like an "Otto," but with central gearing, the production of Mr. C. Kingston Welsh, of Tottenham. Though home-made it is an admirably finished, cleverly designed machine, and in every respect seems, both for ease of steering and safety, far in advance of the original Otto. Believers in this class of machine should not fail to inspect.
H. BURDEN and TOWNSHEND’S Sterling, which were not unpacked on Saturday, shared the same stand as two Merlins, in which Mr. Bricknell believes implicitly, but the unfortunate part of the business is, he can persuade others to do likewise.
[[Frank Hucklebridge|Mr. HUCKLEBRIDGE of Sloane-street, has an extraordinary Safety bicycle, with a wheel in front as well as behind the driver - a revival of the old Ideal, in fact.
J. HEMSWORTH of Biggleswade, has three bicycles - good, useful machines, but without any points to call forth special mention.
In conclusion, owing to the short space of time allowed us to get ready our copy, and the fact that when we went round the show many of their exhibits were not in place or had not arrived, anything of interest that we have failed to notice shall receive our attention in next week's issue.