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August 2, 2023

This Amphibian Bicycle Could Travel on Land or Water in Paris, 1932

A hybrid among vehicles, an amphibian bicycle that could travel on land or water, was demonstrated by its French inventor at a Paris exposition in 1932.

Its wheels are hollow, bulbous floats that, with the aid of four smaller globes on outriggers, sustain it in the water. All of the floats revolve freely like wheels, resulting in a minimum of drag. When the rider pedals across the water, fins on the rear wheel serve as paddles to drive the machine forward.

For a ride on dry land, the outriggers supporting the outer floats may be folded up clear of the ground. Proof that the floats would be sufficiently buoyant to support the rider was given when the inventor navigated his device, without difficulty, across a large swimming pool.

“Swash!” The craft took the water like a miniature liner being launched, the fore parts of the floats rising gallantly above the wavelets made by the wind, the bicycle-boat forging steadily ahead under the impetus given by the tiny screw.


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