Are you feeling the need to connect back to the roots of cycling? Consider this new crowd funded penny farthing on Kickstarter ($999 for single speed):
“The bicymple nuvo is an ideal blend of new and old, modern and retro, complexity and simplicity. It’s the classic penny farthing concept but with updated geometry, components, and an optional two-speed hub that provides speed without requiring the ginormous front wheel that made the classic penny farthing so intimidating! The nuvo rides like a traditional bicycle with a comfortable upright seating position that’s both relaxing and familiar.”
Penny farthings were a critical piece of bicycle history, but were limited because the gear ratio was a direct function of wheel size. In order to ride faster, you needed a larger wheel. As a result, the wheels kept getting larger and larger. Giant wheels turned out to be both unsafe and impractical, but the design and concept of the penny farthing remained brilliantly simple–and as it happens to be, incredibly fun! With modern innovations, the penny farthing can again be an elegant and playful solution to pedal power.