Tuesday, October 19, 2004

Militarvelos

I have found a company in Arkansas that imports surplus military vehicles from Switzerland - wonderfully boxy Pinzgauers and Unimogs, exactly the sort of trucks I remember from the beach scene of Richard Scarry's "Cars and Trucks and Things that Go". That was a great book.

In any case, I found this company while looking for sources of surplus Swiss Militarvelos, or army bicycles. I'm not looking for the version made after 1995, but rather the old single-speed bikes. The design is more-or-less unchanged since 1901, when "safety" bicycles were a relatively recent innovation. The front brake is a block of rubber pressed down onto the tire by a lever, the saddle is highly sprung leather, and the unladen bicycle approaches fifty pounds. Oh yea.


2 Comments:

Blogger african oracle said...

how much do these delights cost ?

October 19, 2004 2:57 PM  
Blogger Justin said...

Hello African,

Willy Berchtold of Swiss Army Vehicles ( http://www.swissarmyvehicles.com/shpics.php?table=vehicles&idnum=17&cat=5 ) will sell one for $350, shipping extra. Shipping to my state would be $70.

I have seen online evidence that these machines sell for under 200 euros in Europe, but I have only found two other suppliers in the United States, both charging considerably more for the bike (though one did include the leather courier case that straps inside the frame).

Out of curiosity, how did you find me?

October 19, 2004 3:41 PM  

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