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I love what an inventive time the 1890s was for bicycles. So many ideas being tried out, so many different types of frames. The old high-wheel Ordinary still existed, though wad being largely replaced by the Safety model.
Crypto Bantams were a short-lived attempt, from about 1892 for a few years, to hold on to the principles of the Ordinary without the dangerous height of the wheel, by gearing the front wheel.
Despite their apparent less than satisfactory performance on this cycling tour, and Holding's scathing opinion of them, a racing cyclist called Frank Shortland won in three consecutive years on his Bantam competing against Safeties:
What's wrong with Bantams? pp16-18
What's this all about??
I'm making a true-story graphic novel called