Exhibitions: Visible Storage ▪ Study Center

Benjamin J. Bowden: Spacelander Bicycle

The aluminum prototype of this futuristic bicycle was handmade by the MG Auto Company in England in 1946 and incorporated an ingenious dynamo that stored the downhill energy and released it on uphill runs. It was prohibitively expensive for consumer production, but in 1960 Bowden contracted with Bomard Industries in Michigan to produce a more mechanically conventional, one-speed version of the dynamic, organic design in fiberglass, a new design material. Ultimately the endeavor was too costly for Bomard Industries as well and the firm went out of business having manufactured only 522 examples.