STARLEY ARIEL & TANGENT
8) The Tangent and Special Tangent were made up to 1880 but dropped by Rudge in 1881 although I think the wheel continued for a while on their Coventry tricycle.
9) Jan 1877, Voluntary liquidation of Smith and Starley
1871 Starley Ariel
This historic Ariel machine was found in a river. The metal is quite rusty. I’ll probably leave it as it is, as a museum display piece to illustrate how many (subsequently) restored bicycles are found.
As well as being the first ‘ordinary’ (penny farthing), this model is historically significant because it indirectly led to the founding of three of the most important British vehicle manufacturers.
1. William Hillman subsequently founded ‘Hillman, Herbert & Cooper’ who made ‘The Premier’, the first successful safety bicycle. Hillman later made cars.
2. Starley’s company went through various transformations, eventually evolving into D Rudge & Co, which became Rudge-Whitworth.
3. Starley’s nephew J.K Starley, who worked for him, founded Rover.
The Ariel name resurfaced in the 1890s as the Ariel Cycle Co.
Thanks to Nick Clayton for sending me the text at the top of the page