The first bicycle was invented in 1836 by a Scotish blacksmith named Kirkpatrick Macmillan. He attached long rods connected to cranks onto an axel.
When one thinks of bicycles of the past, many times we think of the "Ordinary" bike. The petals were attached right to the front large wheel of these bicycles also called high-wheelers. The
gear ratio of these bikes with one huge front wheel and a small back wheel was 1:1.
Many today take the physics of bicycles for granted just like any other commonly used machine, but after learning of the great many parts of this machine that effect the sport, you will hopefully have a much greater appreciation for that old bike in your garage.