The Bird Scooter of the ’70s?


We have been spending a bunch of time indoors these days, fantasy automotive purchasing on Craigslist and the like. We have posted about tons of attention-grabbing rides on the market, and through a current such hunt, we stumbled throughout a three-wheeled classic Honda solely one in every of us had ever heard of: the 1974 Kick ‘N Go.

As you have possible surmised by now, the Kick ‘N Go isn’t a automotive, or perhaps a bike, trike, or different engine-packing conveyance of the varieties Honda is thought for manufacturing. As an alternative, it is a youngsters’s scooter with an ingenious ratcheting mechanism that motors it alongside on the facility of the rider’s kick. Not like, say, a Razor or different easy two-wheeled scooters the place the person retains one foot planted on a little bit platform whereas utilizing the opposite to push off the bottom and get issues rolling, the Honda Kick ‘N Go’s mechanical energy setup meant the rider did not must put toes to pavement to scoot alongside, however neither did it require an precise engine or motor.

Here is the way it works: The rider kicks down and again on a T-shaped steel lever, yanking a series related to a pulley sprocket away from one other sprocket on the rear wheel; the rear hub has a one-way clutch, primarily, so when the kick lever returns upright (by way of a return spring) and the chain springs again, the hub is disengaged from the setup. The rider merely retains kicking away, spinning that rear wheel, and ratchets alongside.

Steering was dealt with by leaning to the left or the precise, as one would possibly on a skateboard. The entrance wheels are mounted to a skateboard-style truck axle hinged within the center and rubber-mounted (permitting the flex for leaning into corners). Riders might brake the rear wheel utilizing a easy hand brake lever mounted to the handlebars, which manipulated a drum-style brake shoe that clamped down on the rear wheel.

At first, Honda solely supplied the Kick ‘N Go in a fairly small measurement, for younger youngsters, in 1974. Later, in 1976, it launched the Kick ‘N Go 2, which was geared towards barely larger youngsters (and might be had with a single entrance wheel), in addition to an adult-sized bought because the GOGO in Japan and the Kick ‘N Go Senior in every single place else. (The smaller fashions had been recognized in Japan as Honda Curler-By GOGOs.) When new, these retailed for lower than 100 bucks, and even at the moment, a fast scan of listings on Craigslist and eBay reveals unique Kick ‘N Gos could be had for, effectively, just about the identical type of cash. One (the yellow instance pictured above) even sold via a Mecum auction last year.

The Kick ‘N Go scooters had been a relative hit even within the U.S. however had been pulled from the market after two riders died on them, a minimum of per web lore. We’re undecided what, if something, made the scooters extra harmful than, say, skateboards, bicycles, or the motorized scooters that had been gaining recognition within the mid-1970s, so take into account the Hondas’ destiny tragic. Depart it to Honda to design and construct a light-weight, candy car that did not want a motor, battery, fuel, an engine, recharging, or no matter to scoot alongside swiftly. It primarily constructed a greater Fowl scooter many years earlier than these even grew to become a factor.



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