Sizing Your Penny-Farthing:
As excited as a novice might be about buying the most outrageously large wheeled Penny-Farthing they can buy, sadly it’s one’s height that is the limiting factor on the maximum size Penny-Farthing that you can ride: you do need to be able to reach the pedals!
For somebody like me whose a towering 5’9″ in height, a 50″ Penny-Farthing is the largest I can ride (comfortably). Generally they’re sized in 2″ increments in respect to the large front wheels: 48″, 50″, 52″, 54″ and 56″ are sold. Don’t go too large, or you’ll strain your legs and you will not enjoy riding it!
When you speak to one of the below manufacturers, they’ll help you choose a correctly sized Penny-Farthing. They’re all honest businessmen and want you to enjoy riding and will take care to ensure you’re riding the correct sized Penny-Farthing.
(4) Main Penny-Farthing manufacturers in the UK:
They offer a Penny-Farthing manufactured in TAIWAN (not China!). If you see anything on the ‘net about “UDC” Penny-Farthings, these refer to “Unicycle Dot Com” ones. I ride these and they are outstanding. Since the spine on UDC Penny-Farthings is not monolithic- the rear fork is nested inside the spine and locked in place with a hex key- the rake on these PF’s are adjustable. So you can make them less twitchy and less likely to cause a headover by reducing the height of the rear fork as the weight of the rider is no longer directly over the forks. Roger has no stock and doesn’t expect to get any before sometime in 2024 due to global supply chain issues.
Ed creates bespoke Penny-Farthing: he does not mass-manufacture as UDC does. He’s a righteous dude whose been riding Penny-Farthings for over 40 years. What he doesn’t know about PF isn’t worth knowing. Ed tends to be at the center of all things Penny-Farthing in the UK. In addition to building Penny-Farthings, he has even recreated copies of extinct bicycles from historical pictures. You can contact Ed through the FB group “The League of Ordinary Riders” where he’s also an admin of the group.
Trott & Sons
Like Ed, the Trotts are manufacturers of bespoke Penny-Farthings- and indeed a really lovely family of keen cyclists. Also like Ed, Matt is an administrator of the FB group, “The League of Ordinary Riders” where you can contact them. Apparently the Trotts still have access to parts and so are building Penny-Farthings still! The Trotts are based in Eastbourne, UK and their website is:
Joff is famous for cycling a Penny-Farthing around the world. And he too is also a manufacturer of Penny-Farthings. Can’t find a business site for him either; will update when I find one