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Monowheels Are Not That New

We live in an interesting world. Every day is a new invention joining our routine life. But what if I tell you that most of our inventions were created before, and today we just reuse them according to our modern technologies. History has so many secrets that we need to obtain.  

Historical inventions can be found in any sphere. Check some information about aviation or logistics or even the gambling sphere. We used to play dice, but now we are playing at an online casino. Gaming is a part of any invention. 

The invention of the wheel was a real revolution in the history of mechanics in general and transport in particular. And this form turned out to be so successful that engineers rushed to create a huge amount of equipment, not only for civilian use but also in the military sphere. However, there is one branch of these projects, in which the silhouette of a wheel and a ball is taken as a basis – as a result, very entertaining concepts were obtained, most of which have long gone into history, and we still use the descendants of some today. 


Back in the days when cars were just starting to take over the market, bicycles were in huge demand and were the main source of inspiration for inventors. Therefore, they began to increase the wheels on them. Actually, this is how the concept of a dicycle appeared, which involved placing a passenger between two large wheels. The most famous and, in fact, the only commercially successful example of a dicycle was the Otto Safety Bicycle project.


Another unusual branch of the evolution of the bicycle and wheels was the development of the concept of the introcycle. His scheme is the creation of a huge wheel, inside of which there was a place for the driver. for all the unusualness of this transport, it had enough shortcomings. For example, driving such a unit required certain skills. In addition, the introcycle was inconvenient and even dangerous, because it did not imply protection from either dirt or damage that could potentially be received during a traffic accident. Therefore, introcycles became widespread only as an element of the entertainment industry, especially at the beginning of the last century, when modifications with a motor or a propeller appeared.

Introcycles are regularly developed today, and sometimes they can be seen in the movies. For example, in one of the scenes, the main characters of the Men in Black trilogy rode such transport.


Introcycles, which quickly faded from the forefront of history, had at least two serious drawbacks – poor stability and virtually no safety. And the British inventor John Purvis tried to correct these oversights. So, in 1932, he designed an apparatus called the dynasphere, which was indeed a more stable option than the introcycle, and even had several versions that differed in the number of passengers or the power plant used. However, none of them survived the prototype stage.


A considerable number of attempts at the evolution of the wheel could not but attract the engineers of the military industry. However, the concept of a spherical or spherical shape seemed more relevant to them, but at that time they had not yet come to this silhouette. The first successful experience in the implementation of such a project was carried out in Germany. We are talking about the Treffaswagen concept, which was a three-wheeled structure, the wheel diameter was 3.3 meters, on which machine-gun mounts were installed at the ends and the main armament in the form of a 20-mm Tankabwehrkanone Becker M11 anti-tank gun.

A Rolling Tank

Another project, information about which appeared in the magazine Popular Science, but this time for 1936. In this case, they limited themselves to only a short note, entitled “The new military tank resembles a rolling ball.” And it had a serious impact on the military of a number of countries in the world, especially the USSR. True, it was embellished a little there. The project of the so-called “Armored Ball” was taken as the basis, and on the cover of the magazine, for example, they placed a more formidable cannon instead of a machine gun, which acted as a weapon. As for the real concept, they tried to bring it to life, but they stopped at the stage of an experimental layout. They never assembled it in metal.

Trench Fighter Hugo Gernsback

Another similar to the German project was invented by the American enthusiast Hugo Gernsback. It occurred to him to place a cockpit for the pilot between two large wheels, on which weapons were also installed, designed to destroy enemies in the trenches. The main advantage of these machines was higher stability, but in general, the concept did not suit the command, so the launch of mass production did not happen.

The War Maschine by Arsane Pare

One of the first transport projects, where the ball was fully taken as the basis, was the invention of Arsene Pare, which remained in history under the name “War Machine”. The appearance of this invention is similar to a huge rolling grenade. The unit was driven by wheels that rotated along the inner surface of the outer shell, causing it to rotate in the required direction. In addition, the machine also had the properties of an amphibian.

Military Tank Using One Wheel

Such a long name also meant a military introcycle, which was already being developed on the American continent. True, in this case, almost the only information about this project that has survived to this day is a note dated November 1933 in Popular Science magazine, which, accordingly, was called military tank on one wheel, driven by one person. However, there is no reliable information that this project was developed or implemented.

The world is full of different inventions. They can be used today, using our powers and technologies. We can create a more interesting world! Our history keeps lots of secrets that can help solve lots of today’s problems.

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