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1869 Tadpole Recumbent Trike

This figure from a U.S. patent from 1869 shows a tadpole recumbent trike. It is powered by the user’s hands and feet. The feet work a treadle, and the hands work the rods. Rod and lever propulsion was common in those days, because reliable chains had not been developed yet, and the crank and chain was not proven as the best way to transfer power. This wheel and frame configuration is about 140 years ahead of ahead of the Catrike and other trikes, which have similar frame and wheel configuration.

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