Ancestor of Bike Friday?
While searching the Internet, I remembered finding the bike out of our storage room, probably as an early teenager in the mid 1960s. Pulling the bike out of its zippered canvas storage bag , I figured out how to unfold it. After carefully pumping up the tires, I walked it out of the yard to the street to take a ride. I remember being a bit tenuous at first, as the very tall handlebar stem was a bit more flexible than expected. I do remember, though, that it was quite maneuverable with its small wheels and short wheelbase. I don’t remember anything beyond this first experience and have no idea what ever happened to it in the passing years.
While I was remembering bits of first ride, the Internet browser search came back with some search results. Here’s basically what I learned:
- This Folding bicycle was made in Occupied Japan By the Shimura Seiki Co. LTD, Pat. no.181909. The ship my dad was stationed on at the time was in Japan in late 1951.
- This Bike is the Civilian model of the Bicycle used by Japanese Paratroopers in WWll.
- The bicycle in the photos is probably an early model of the Road Puppy.
- The wheels are 14".
- As you can see from the photos, it folds into a fairly compact package.
- I remember the bike being a dark red or burgundy color.
I think what surprises me the most is not expecting to see two photos of a folding bicycle or any bicycle in a bunch of photos about shipboard surroundings and Korean War scenes. It seems there’s always a surprise in life, no matter how small. Sometimes these come when you least expect them.
Do you have any photos of bikes you remember having or ones that you wished you had? Send them to the Bent Fork Editors
with a brief write-up and we'll publish your notes in an upcoming edition of the Bent Fork. Now, I wonder what ever happened to that Puppy bike….