Analog Bicycle Speedometer and how they Work

Analog bicycle speedometer

An analog bicycle speedometer obviously tracks the mileage and speed of your bike. But what are some of the other interesting details of these devices?

Read on to find out…

What Is An Analog Bicycle Speedometer?

Analog speedometers connect to your handlebars and give you mileage and speed. of your ride. Some come with a reset knob that you can use to reset the meter to track different segments of your ride.

Most manual odometers are compatible with spoked wheels only.

These usually include the following:

  • Speedometer dial
  • Connecting cable
  • A wheel drive adapter
  • Mounting hardware

Simple Bike Speedometer

If you’re looking for a simple bike speedometer to calculate speed and total distance traveled, then you can simply install a manual old-school bike speedometer on your bike.

Analog odometers measure speed reading in kilometers or miles per hour through a small gear that’s installed on the bike’s front wheel.

Retro Analog Bicycle Speedometer

Retro Analog Bicycle Speedometer

Retro analog bicycle speedometers are usually more expensive than regular ones because many of these are considered antique.

Many of these Retro Bike Speedometers have become collector’s items and are usually more expensive because of this.

The original design for a speedometer was created in 1888 by Josip Belušić, a Croatian inventor and professor of Mathematics and Physics.

Who Invented The Speedometer?

The original design for a speedometer was invented in 1888 by Josip Belušić, a Croatian inventor and professor of Mathematics and Physics.

The original design was made up of a magnet and a pointer and worked off of electrical eddy currents. The design was later improved by a German inventor named Otto Schultze, who patented his design in 1902.

How Do Analog Bike Speedometers Work?

Analog speedometers gauges easily connect to the handlebars of your bicycle, and the cable attaches to your front wheel.

There is a small magnet on the end of the speedometer cable. The cable spins with the wheel, when the wheel is in motion. The speedometer cable magnet passes a small aluminum cup called a Speed Cup.

As the magnet interacts with the speed cup, it produces eddy currents which move the cup. With enough force, the speed cup’s rotations will move the pointer of the speedometer guage.

The pointer is precisely calibrated to reflect the amount of speedometer cable rotations.

These speedometers work with a cable that connects to your bicycle’s front wheel. The cable spins with each revolution of the front wheel which shows your speed.

You can use these on any type of bike that comes with spoke wheels.

If you only want a simple display to show your speed and distance, then an analog bike speedometer is what you’re looking for. In this case, you don’t need a digital speedometer because an analog bike speedometer will serve you well.

Right and Left Side Manual Speedometers

The wheel drive adapter is one of the most important parts of the analog speedometer. It’s usually mounted on the right side of your front wheel.

It can be mounted on the left side depending on the movement of the speedometer needle.

If the cable needle is installed from left to right, then the wheel drive adapter should be installed on the right side of the wheel and vice versa.

However, there are manual odometers available in the market that can be installed on either side of the front wheel to record your ride data.

You can also buy analog speedometers that offer reading in both miles and kilometers per hour.

Final Words

If you’re a casual bike rider and like to monitor your speed and total distance covered, you can buy a simple analog bicycle speedometer that comes with a built-in odometer and install it on your bike.

The installation process is very simple and you can do it yourself without any professional help. All you need to do is to use the steps mentioned in this guide to install the speedometer in the right way.

About Informed Cyclist
Michael Rogers
I’m Michael, a cycling fanatic and the founder of Informed Cyclist. I started this site to give back to the sport I love! My mission is to bring the very best cycling advice & know-how to my readers. I hope you enjoy this site as much as I love working on it. I put a lot of heart & effort into it!