Model T of antique bikes?

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Balloonoob

I live for the CABE
Jan 24, 2019
1,210
35
Longmont Colorado
What would be considered the model t or Mustang of turn of the century bicycles? I'm guessing it would wear a Columbia badge? Just wondering if, as with cars, there are models with higher production numbers that can be had at a lower cost than others. Perhaps a more standard model without the bells and whistles.
 
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Balloonoob

I live for the CABE
Jan 24, 2019
1,210
35
Longmont Colorado
I guess I should clarify I'm not talking high wheels. I have seen the phrase "standard of the world". Was the "standard" a model name? Was chain drive or gear driven toc bikes more common? Which are typically more reliable? I know.... So many questions.... Haha.
 

bentwoody66

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Jan 4, 2008
2,610
53
Middletown Ohio
I see more pictures of Crescent bikes from that time period than any other.

Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk
 
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Balloonoob

I live for the CABE
Jan 24, 2019
1,210
35
Longmont Colorado
To answer part of your question how many shaft drive bicycles do you see around? V/r Shawn
That's a great question. I have seen none in the Denver area. Here are the oldest 2 i have seen. A truss frame iver Johnson owned by a bada$$ and somewhat lucky dude named Tony and an old hawthorne owned by an even cooler and older dude named Blu. And well.. A 1919? Truss frame bike owned by Eric which i don't have a picture of but is chain driven . So shaft drive equals rare.... Noted.

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Cooper S.

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Aug 28, 2016
717
27
New Lenox Illinois
There’s just too much diversity in bike brands from the Toc to make a clear analogy to car brands. It’d be like asking what sneaker is the model t of sneakers, it’s completely apples and oranges
 
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Andrew Gorman

Cruisin' on my Bluebird
Jun 15, 2008
2,972
Pasadena (Hastings Ranch), United States
Sears sold Napoleon and Josephine bikes that were pretty nice and inexpensive. But after the bicycle bust ca. 1900 it was a race to the bottom for US bike manufacturers. Iver Johnson seemed to be the last holdout making nice bikes for adults.
 

Freqman1

Riding a '37 Dayton Super Streamline
Jul 14, 2009
18,754
Evans, GA
That's a great question. I have seen none in the Denver area. Here are the oldest 2 i have seen. A truss frame iver Johnson owned by a bada$$ and somewhat lucky dude named Tony and an old hawthorne owned by an even cooler and older dude named Blu. And well.. A 1919? Truss frame bike owned by Eric which i don't have a picture of but is chain driven . So shaft drive equals rare.... Noted.

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Actually the point to my answer was that chain drive was both more common and more reliable. A chain drive system has more tolerance than a gear drive system. V/r Shawn
 

Balloonoob

I live for the CABE
Jan 24, 2019
1,210
35
Longmont Colorado
X2,Bicycles were expensive back then
Bicycles were expensive back then.... From wiki : At a time when Pope charged $125 for a Columbia, Overman Wheel Company was marketing a bicycle for wage workers, who might earn $1 per day. Instead of reducing cost and price on the Columbias, Pope decided to produce a separate line to compete with Overman.[16] Around 1890, Pope started another manufacturer, Hartford Cycle Company in order to create a new line with a mid-price niche.
 

Rambler

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Nov 1, 2011
889
Auburn Hills, United States
Balloonoob, I agree with others that the analogy between bicycles and the Model T doesn't really work because they are just too different "apples & oranges". However if you want to consider just bicycle brand production numbers with no regard to model of bicycle, I would guess that you are correct, it's probably the Columbia nameplate that would hold title to the largest number of bicycles produced prior to 1900.
 

Balloonoob

I live for the CABE
Jan 24, 2019
1,210
35
Longmont Colorado
Actually the point to my answer was that chain drive was both more common and more reliable. A chain drive system has more tolerance than a gear drive system. V/r Shawn
Sounds like so long as a shaft/gear drive bike has good teeth that are not ground down it can be easily adjusted for good alignment and ridden reliably . Given the tires are reliable. I could never own a bike i could not ride. So what do you mean by tolerance? Thanks Shawn.
 

Freqman1

Riding a '37 Dayton Super Streamline
Jul 14, 2009
18,754
Evans, GA
Sounds like so long as a shaft/gear drive bike has good teeth that are not ground down it can be easily adjusted for good alignment and ridden reliably . Given the tires are reliable. I could never own a bike i could not ride. So what do you mean by tolerance? Thanks Shawn.
I've never owned one myself but from those that have adjusting these can be a bit tricky. Flex from hitting bumps or really riding hard does not affect a chain drive bike the same way it does a gear drive bike which requires precise alignment to prevent binding or slop. Think about how critical it is to set up the ring and pinion on an automotive differential. V/r Shawn
 

Barnegatbicycles

Finally riding a big boys bike
Jul 29, 2012
130
Barnegat Nj
To answer part of your question how many shaft drive bicycles do you see around? V/r Shawn
Lol I was actually going to say Columbia shaft drive bikes. I don't know as I see so many because they were super common back in the day but I feel like many have been saved due to their uniqueness.
 
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CURTIS L LINDGREN

Wore out three sets of tires already!
Dec 19, 2017
921
60
Pacific Northwest , United States
While I can't say that I have owned a T.O.C. Shaft Driven Bike - - - - - - -I CAN say..............I had one for over 15 years , and rode it a fair amount of times. @Freqman1 is right about the tolerance with the gears , they need to "Mesh" properly under all forms of use. My bet is most owners probably couldn't do a proper adjustment to their ( T.O.C. ) bikes , and eventually they went by the wayside or were just never ridden again . Darn near anyone can adjust a chain . So maybe EARLY Shaft driven bikes are rarer ...........I don't know , but I don't see them very often. Soooooo with that said............. Here's a few pic's of my old " Fendt Cardano " a German made - MODERN ( 1982 ) Shaft drive Bicycle . 3 Speed , Rear Coaster Brake , Front Caliper Brake , Generator powered Front and rear lights and the clock in the headlight shell is a wind -up ( wound from under the shell ) ;) By The Way @Balloonoob , not trying to hi jack your thread - - - - -but Dangit - - - - - - I think you opened up a pretty broad discussion here - - - - - I figured I'd add my 2c. and a few pic's as well. :poutingcat: Ride Safe Everyone ! :cool:

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Balloonoob

I live for the CABE
Jan 24, 2019
1,210
35
Longmont Colorado
While I can't say that I have owned a T.O.C. Shaft Driven Bike - - - - - - -I CAN say..............I had one for over 15 years , and rode it a fair amount of times. @Freqman1 is right about the tolerance with the gears , they need to "Mesh" properly under all forms of use. My bet is most owners probably couldn't do a proper adjustment to their ( T.O.C. ) bikes , and eventually they went by the wayside or were just never ridden again . Darn near anyone can adjust a chain . So maybe EARLY Shaft driven bikes are rarer ...........I don't know , but I don't see them very often. Soooooo with that said............. Here's a few pic's of my old " Fendt Cardano " a German made - MODERN ( 1982 ) Shaft drive Bicycle . 3 Speed , Rear Coaster Brake , Front Caliper Brake , Generator powered Front and rear lights and the clock in the headlight shell is a wind -up ( wound from under the shell ) ;) By The Way @Balloonoob , not trying to hi jack your thread - - - - -but Dangit - - - - - - I think you opened up a pretty broad discussion here - - - - - I figured I'd add my 2c. and a few pic's as well. :poutingcat: Ride Safe Everyone ! :cool:

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LOL ... thanks Curt. I get it. Ask a bunch of questions...try to be specific...and still open up a pretty broad discussion. That's the way it goes sometimes. Hahaha. Well I dig your old old Hitler youth bike. Oh man...I try so hard not to sound like the other millennials. Don't drink and cabe. You'll only get blocked. Hahaha.
 
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Archie Sturmer

I live for the CABE
Jun 13, 2018
1,142
Los Angeles, CA, USA
The premise of the question may have a flaw.
It asks about the model T affordable bike, but then places it in the wrong (expensive) decade.
I believe that the Chicago catalog answers of Mead and Sears was correct, and the ToC era was misplaced.
 
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