Tuesday, March 4, 2008
Welcome to our humble blog, dear reader. We are Misters Eric and Alan respectively, and herein we will be documenting our bicycle building efforts as a rule, but other interests and adventures as well.
I say bicycles but by no means will they be limited to two wheels. In fact, as a rule they will have more than two. Our first project is a tadpole trike, which we intend to have a Steampunk theme. Steampunk is something we've always enjoyed and the trike as planned has more ground clearance than the typical tadpole trike. Something about that tall off-the-ground profile reminded me of the first bicycles, trikes and automobiles such as the 1886 Benz.
We both have early memories of old fashioned tech. I (Eric) remember my father sending me down to Murphy's General Store in Fountain Square in Indianapolis, vacuum tube or three in my hand. The store had a vacuum tube testing machine, rather like the blood pressure machine you might find in a drug store today. My father was an amateur inventor and had all sorts of fans, radios and other gadgetry and old tools lying around. He never possessed a single power tool. Alan remembers a neighbor with lots of old audio equipment and a big brass organ in his garage. His grandmother would give him radios to fix. He also fondly remembers
going to the state fair from the earliest age and seeing the variety of
old steam powered tractors and mills. While some of this old tech is not of the Steam Age the early exposure gave us an appreciation of old fashioned tech.
Steampunk is only one expression of a wider appreciation of all things mechanical, handcrafted, fine and fun. Much of what we blog about will not be particularly Steampunk, but hopefully can be appreciated by the same audience.
We live in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania and when attempting to come up with a name for ourselves and our blog we wanted something old timey feeling. We settled on naming ourselves after a prominent figure in Valley Forge history. Wilhelm Von Steuben trained the Continental Army at Valley Forge in the art of drill and warfare as the Prussians saw it.
Hence Steuben's Wheelmen!