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Sunday, May 01, 2016

Berlin Motorcycle Museum

Berlin Motorcycle Museum

At of our guests left last Sunday - we had 4 days left for ourselves. On Monday - I went to the Berliner  Motorrad Museum - Motocycle Museum. I have always had a soft spot for motor scooters - a great cheap dependable form of transportation that is easy to park - and you just feel young riding one - with the winding your hair. My first "car" was a 1965 Honda 50 Cub - capable of going 45 MPH and getting 200 miles per gallon. 

One of the famous names in motorcycles in Germany is Simson. The company was founded by Lob and Moses Simson. They produced cars - motorcycles - bicycles - and guns. During World War I - they built the German Mauser rifle. After World War I - they produced the very successful German Luger pistol. When the Nazis took over power in the 1930s - the Jewish Simsons had to leave the country - leaving their successful business behind for the Nazis - not by choice. 

After World War II - Europe was in turmoil. the vehicle of choice was the motorcycle/motor scooter because it was cheap to build and maintain. Old munition plants were converted form tanks and planes to scooters - like the famous Piaggio Vespa in Italy. 

The museum is housed under the elevated railroad  downtown by the tower - at Alexander Plaza.

Today - scooters and bikes are very popular in Germany - where gasoline is $5.50 a gallon. Scooters and bicycles easily outnumber cars and trucks in Berlin. 

I would have loved to bring a couple dozen bikes and scooters home with me. 

Simson scooter

This 3 wheeler Simson could hold 3 people side by side. It had
a ting 50 cc engine

This is a moped - you pedaled it to start - and away you wen

An all metal body 

The Singing Nun rode a scooter

Cutaway of a 1 cylinder engine

The museum was under the train tracks 

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