The Wheel - A Timeline
The wheel is one of the most important and the most impactful inventions in human history. Today you see it everywhere and are a major component of any machine. Primitive man did this basic and stupendous invention by their sere knowledge, which they gained by experience of nomadic life and way before education found its way into society.
If we look at the untold history of the wheel, we will find different stages where it was further modified, making it even more important and touching everyone’s life.
The oldest recorded proof where wheels were used as a machine was in Mesopotamia. It served as a potter’s wheel at that time.
Again, credit goes to the Mesopotamian culture to use wheels for transportation purpose. It was used to move their chariots but limited and majorly used domestic purpose like irrigation, milling, and pottery.
This is the era when improvement started in wheels purely for transportation purpose. Wooden wheels with iron rims around them became a common culture in chariots.
Wooden wheels saw improvements over the ages, but the major improvement happened in the 1800s when metals were used primarily in wheel making.
Round wire tension spokes saw a way forward in wheel upgrade, and we still see them on bicycles. This is where we started seeing wheels being made purely of metals.
R.W. Thompson the brainchild behind pneumatic tire which brought a revolution in wheel up-gradation forever.
Karl Benz did not take long to utilise the pneumatic tire idea and invent the automobile wheel. This was a breakthrough in transportation history.
The revolutionary John Dunlop who was a veterinarian by profession reinvented the pneumatic tires but this time replacing the hard rubber used in all bicycles during this time.
A big problem with rubber tyres was they wore out pretty quickly so, B.F. Goodrich company created a new tyre adding carbon to rubber. This got us longer life tires, which were stronger but flexible.
1926 – 1927
The birth of steel welded spoke wheels, which was the base for modern wheels and future wheels to come.
We are now in the age of Alloy wheels and wheels made of artificial but toughened materials, making wheels last longer and allowing us to tread in the toughest terrains.
Posted by Anonymous