How it all started

It was a drawing by Leonardo da Vinci that first inspired Magni to build a bicycle of wood. One more of Leonardo's visionary concepts, centuries ahead of his time.
        It wasn't until 1817 that a prototypical bicycle was first actually built. Baron von Drais, wanting a quicker way to get around the royal gardens, devised a wooden frame with two wheels, the front one steered by handlebars. The baron straddled his "Draisienne", scooted along with his feet, and rolled to the next rose bush.
        In 1865, pedals were applied to the front wheel and bicycle as we know it was born. This "Velocipede" was at first made entirely of wood. When metal wheels were substituted, the engineering evolved a front wheel much larger than the back, creating the "penny farthing" profile. Brakes were still in the future, and the contraption was ridden mainly in rinks as a dare-devil spectacle.
        As improvements in metallurgy enabled smaller and more sophisticated components, the bicycle lost its extreme proportions and the original proportions of the two wheels were restored. By the turn of the twentieth century, the bicycle had moved from curious spectacle to popular sport for both men and women, affecting fashions in the process.
        Now, a century later, Magni Vinicio restores the beauty of the bicycle's wooden origins.