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Saturday, May 4, 2019

Unique shaped scooters from the past

For those of you who may still be confused with the 'scooter' term and what is the difference with an ordinary motorcycle. The definition of 'scooter' is a type of two-wheeled vehicle or motorcycle with a frame that is one with the body (monocoque) so that its rider has a special platform to put his feet.
Unique shaped scooters (in pictured: Unibus scooter) from the past. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2UyYDZB)
Perhaps when it was first shown to the public in the past, its shape was not as we know it now. And maybe you will ask about how unique the shape of the scooter was when it first began to be developed in the past. Here're unique shaped of pioneered scooter was built in early 19th up to 20th centuries;

1. Hildebrand und Wolfmuller
Scooter design began to develop since 1914, but long before there's a German manufacturer named Hildebrand und Wolfmuller had pioneered the first model of scooter in early nineteenth century. But the Hildebrand und Wolfmuller models are not well developed due to the complexity of the design, including the rear wheels which are driven directly by the engine piston as well as on the steam locomotives.
This is Hildebrand und Wolfmüller motorcycle was brought by an Englishman named John C. Potter in 1893 and later known as the first motorcycle in Indonesia. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1Nwfrq1)
But amazingly, this German-made scooter was the figure of a motorcycle that first stopped in Indonesia (at that time still called the Dutch East Indies) which was imported directly by a British named John C. Potter in 1893. (Here's the full story).

2. Auto-Fauteuil
In 1902, a French manufacturer made a scooter named Auto-Fauteuil which is often regarded as one of the forerunners of the modern scooter. Unlike today's scooters, Auto-Fauteuil scooters drive the rear wheels with a chain system, just like an ordinary motorcycle. Its trademark is the rider's seat adopts a (house) chair model with arms and backrests.
Auto-Fauteuil 1908 model "Tour" 490 cc, water cooled, single frame. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2UR5VwD)
And the story behind the creation of this scooter is also quite unique, it all began when the French factory named Georges Gauthier and Cie. in Blois, Loir-et -Cher, which is actually an auto-parts manufacturer tried to make a scooter.

The scooter manufactured between 1902 and 1922 and the presence of these scooters was quite attention-grabbing in the eyes of the bikers of the era. At  first the power units were supplied by De Dion Bouton, but by 1906 Gauthier used his own engines. These engines could be ordered in several capacities, with magneto or battery and coil ignition and engines could be air-cooled or water cooled.

3. Autoped
Then the first generation of scooters was marked by the appearance of Autoped in 1915. The Autoped was an early motor scooter or motorized scooter manufactured by the Autoped Company of Long Island City, New York from 1915 to 1921.
1919 Autoped, (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2KXq9jQ)
To ride the Autoped had a unique way, namely the driver stood on a platform with 10-inch tires and operated the machine by pushing the handlebars forward, while for braking, the driver must pull the handlebars towards the rear.
Krupp licence-built Autoped with seat. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2KXq9jQ)
The engine was an air-cooled, 4-stroke, 155 cc engine over the front wheel. The bike came with a headlamp and tail lamp, a Klaxon horn, and a toolbox. Developed during wartime and gasoline rationing, it was quite efficient, but was not widely distributed and used (for example, used by traffic police officers).

4. Unibus
Next unique scooter is a scooter from England which is also included in the first generation scooter category. The scooter was named Unibus, ie a scooter produced by a British company called Gloster Aircraft Co. and before producing scooters, this British company founded in 1917 had been producing airplanes which were used during the first world war. And at the end of the war which was precisely in 1920, the company decided to switch to producing two-wheeled vehicles, namely Scooters.
Unibus scooter as display at the Jet Age Museum in Gloucestershire, England. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/2DuB6Ds)
This unique scooter designer is Harold Boultbee who is also an engineer at those British manufacturing company. In its heyday, Unibus was a scooter that used a fairly sophisticated engine so many people at that time dubbed it "The Car On Two Wheels". The Unibus scooter uses a 2-stroke one-cylinder air-cooled engine with a capacity of 270 cc. These engine is capable of producing power up to 2.5 horsepower, which then delivers the power to the rear wheels through the two-speed manual transmission system. Then the legs that allow this scooter to roll on the road are a pair of 16-inch wheels.
With engine specifications that are fairly sophisticated at that time, of course it is not surprising that the selling price becomes expensive. Especially by carrying out an elegant design, then at that time, Unibus was considered a masterpiece. But as a result of the high price of these scooters, made it unsold on the market. So finally in 1922 the production was stopped. And for 2 years producing Unibus scooters, the British manufacturer only made 100 units. And if you currently feel interested and want to see this Unibus scooter figure, then you are advised to come up to the Jet Age Museum in Gloucestershire, England. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | WIKIPEDIA | SCOOTERNET.GR | YESTERDAYS | HITS FROM THE 80S&90S]
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