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Germans can be credited with inventing one of the precursors to the bicycle. The German Baron Karl Drais von Sauerbronn invented the Laufmaschin, which translated into English means the "running machine." This invention looked like a bicycle without pedals and gears. Kind of like an adult sized push car with two wheels instead of four. This invention was displayed in Paris during April of 1818.

The Germans continued to express their interest and fascination in the development of bicycles, and the bicycle became an important part of their 20th century warfare. One of the first official bicycles manufactured by the Germans was the Elite-Diamant. This bike was created back in 1885 by the Elite Diamond Werks. This company not only manufactured bikes, but they also developed motorcycles.

Another early German bicycle manufacturer was Kalkhoff. This company started in 1919. They developed several 10-speed style bikes during their early history. Today this company is still producing bikes, however, they have expanded their inventory to include 10 speeds, touring bikes, kids' bikes and mountain bikes.

When you are looking for an antique German bicycle to invest in you want to make sure you get the bike's back story. For example, many bikes were stolen by the Germans during World War II as they retreated. Bicycles were also used by the Germans during this war for delivering messages and for relaying military orders. If you can get written stories about the bike, photographs of the bike being used, or any other supporting information about the antique German bike that you want to buy, then you will increase the value of your bike and increase the chances that you will be able to sell the bike later on for a handsome profit.

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Source by Sarah Freeland