How to survive the latest increase in the price of petrol and diesel. Many people are ditching the old gas guzzlers in favor of smaller, more fuel-efficient cars. Second hand cars reflect this trend, where a big, powerful car often sells for way less than a smaller car nowadays.
One way to beat the fuel price increases, is to use pedal power. Bicycles are popular world wide, both for sport and for low-cost transport, although some bicycles are more expensive than a reasonable second-hand car. But those are more for the fanatics and serious cyclists with the cash for it. I have heard of bicycles around R30000 and even R65000. Okay, so the advert for a bicycle for R800000 is for a Track oclv racing bicycle size 63 with u Tegra group set and pro rims. But hey, some might prefer to buy a small house for that kind of money. I did not contact the advertiser to see if they were for real or if it was simply an embarrassing typo.
But, bicycles are limited to a single person, unless it is a tandem bike, which is ideal for two. Or are they? In some countries, people have found ingenious ways to make bicycles more versatile. Here are some pictures of the creative solution to today’s transport crisis.
When my son was a toddler, I had a setup similar to this, and we got around for a while, until the struts broke because he grew too heavy. A month or so later, I bought a small second-hand car, which, of course, was also weather proof, which was fortunate, because the colder weather was just setting in. (My bicycle had ordinary tyres, but it was basically the same idea as the one in the picture.)
Some of the ideas might not be allowed in all countries, but clearly, somewhere in the world, people are getting around in these imaginative ways.
Fuel efficiency and emission control are being built into most of the new cars on the market today. Some prefer the two-wheelers, and some bikers are part of a sub-culture of their own. Some of us are simply on the lookout for a vehicle that is lighter on fuel than most four-wheelers and are willing to suite-up for inclement weather conditions. Some bikers suite-up for safety, where the outer layers take the brunt in a fall, and our delicate skin meeting the hard ground or tarr, sustains less damage.
There are many forums full of helpful advice from experienced bikers. Topics range from which bikes are best for beginner bikers to tips on off-road riding techniques.
There are some who like the best of both worlds. A bicycle with an engine. Here is an article on one such vehicle.
Previously, Reg Eyre has explained to us the what, why and how of motorised bicycles. Now ‘brave’ Robert Rendell takes his first ride on a Wall Auto-Wheel…
‘I noticed that Robert has a weakness for small gutless motorised machines,’ says Reg Eyre, ‘hence I sold him a Velo-Solex, which he rode at the Cotswold Signpost Rally. He expressed an interest in riding a veteran, so I arranged for him to have a ride on my Wall Auto-Wheel made in 1913. The engine sits in its own sub-frame and is attached to the bicycle frame on a pivot. This allows the sub-frame to follow the action of the bicycle rear wheel in a parallel motion which is a weird sensation for the rider, as is the one sided pushing action on the bicycle frame.’
The first thing I needed to do was learn to ride a bicycle, a very old bicycle with a third wheel and motor attached…
I found an advert for this nice 500cc bike a while ago, but it had already been sold.Oh well, I must keep looking…