Haynes & Jefferis ‘Ariel’ Ordinary Bicycle ca. 1879
This machine was probably from the last months of manufacture from the company before they were taken over by George Woodcock.
It has a 52-inch driving wheel and a 20-inch rear wheel, leather-covered saddle and 28-inch handlebars with later turned grips.
In the Ariel design James Starley also provided a means of adjusting the wire spokes, tensioners in the wheel.
This was a method of tensioning the spokes after the wheel had been built, and by doing so prevented the large wheels from buckling.
The idea wasn’t very successful and the ‘tension wheel’ was thus short lived, although the Ariel itself went on to become a very popular bicycle.
All of the hairclip spokes and rim appear to be tight and firm, and the rubber tyring, while showing its age, is serviceable.
This very interesting survivor marks the final fling for the Starley lever-tension wheel and of the ‘Open’ head.