Singer Challenge ca. 1885

Serial number 39918 tells us this beautiful penny farthing was built approximately 1886. According to the Encyclopaedia of Cycle Manufacturers (VCC, Ray Miller) frame 45815 is known to be built in 1887.

What we see on this 54-inch ordinary are the detachable handlebars, a relatively new construction at the time. The double ball bearing at the front was already an older construction, we have seen it on the Singer-built Matchless from 1882.
The (American) saddle and the marvellous bone spade grips may be original, especially in the USA they became popular after 1886. But they may heve been added a few years later to this bike as well.

A nice original survivor, although it's a pity the brake lever and spoon are missing. People often removed these to make their bike look more 'sporty'. Pant guard has disappeared but should be there as well.