Exploratorium: Science of Cycling

The Science of Cycling article by the Exploratorium does many things well, until it lays this egg:

Interestingly, many scientists are in complete disagreement about even the fundamentals of balancing and steering. Some insist that gyroscopic action is responsible for stability, others say the exact opposite.

Talk about “teaching the controversy.” Please name one “scientist” that is getting articles published about bicycles or motorcycles that would make the claim that “gyroscopic action is responsible for stability.”

Instead, exactly the opposite is true. After the  David Jones Physics Today article in 1970,  it is a well established fact that gyroscopic effects are not necessary for bicycle stability.

More recently, Kooijman, et al., in their 2011 Science article,  demonstrated that neither gyroscopic effect nor trail are necessary nor sufficient by themselves for self-stability.

Is bicycle science now like evolution and the age of the universe, about which some publishers feel the need to appease the religious right?


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