A modern-day Penny Farthing?

Of all the weird and wonderful bikes roaming the streets of Seoul, this is the most intriguing to me. First time I saw a woman riding one through the tourist district my jaw quite literally dropped. Some modern-day Cartier Bresson would have had his camera out in a flash, but I’m not that fast. :-p Then I saw this one over at Olympic Park:

modern penny farthing?

Big bike, small bike, and undecided

 And downtown yesterday I spotted this lady on one:

old meets new

Another one

[UPDATE: After a bit of research on Korean price comparison websites, I have found out this bike is the Lebois model from bike maker Corex. Available for sale here in ivory or red for around 180,000 Korean won (85 British pounds; 140 US dollars). More detailed photos here.]

Then on the way home this odd little guy outside a copy shop caught my eye:

Modified mini bike

Self-modified(?) mini bike

Heck, someone even left it a dog bowl of water. How sweet.

Many people on bikes point out how much space cars take up, often quite unecessarily. Small bikes seem to take that one step further. Absolutely the best choice for crowded city living.


2 thoughts on “A modern-day Penny Farthing?

  1. Neat, I had never seen one of these before. What is the benefit, I wonder, of this construction in terms of comfort, etc.? Either way, they are certainly a visual asset to the bike scene!

    • To be perfectly honest, I’m not entirely sure! I suspect it might be a combination of the fact that many Koreans have quite short legs and small apartments. I imagine that replacing the back wheel allows the saddle to sit closer to the ground and makes the whole bike smaller and more storable.

      Or it could just be because it looks cute… 🙂

      Until I try one though, I won’t know.

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