The University of Frazer Valley in Chilliwack, British Columbia is at the North American Handmade Bicycle Show in Sacramento to publicize their bike building course taught by Canadian mountain bike hall of famer Paul Brodie. Visitors to NAHBS have been crowding around to see Brodie’s amazing replica of an 1888 full suspension bicycle.
The 1888 “Whippet” was designed to overcome the shortcomings of solid tires and was obsoleted with the introduction of Dunlop’s new-fangled pneumatic tires. The Whippet, with seven linkages in its suspension, has no dampening so bobs something fierce when ridden. A design flaw also means that when the chain is adjusted, the two head tubes (connected by that scissor linkage) become misaligned over time, so that the head tube linkage doesn’t work when the bars are turned.
In his replica show bike, Brodie reproduces the linkages and pivots from the original frame. He even built up an old fashioned bike chain link by link!
Jonathan @ BikePortland is at NAHBS too and provides his own details and photos of this Whippet replica bike.