The Untold History of the Wheel

Wheels may now appear to be a simple solution for transportation, but the idea was not conceived right away. Ancient people used it mainly as a potter’s wheel. The evolution of the wheel is an interesting story and it took human beings centuries to use the wheel for the purpose of transportation.

It was indeed an ingenious idea, for nothing similar to it exists in the nature, whereas most of the inventions made by man throughout history were in some way inspired by the nature.

What’s even more remarkable is that an idea conceived thousands of years ago holds meaning even to the present day. Wheels nowadays are used in other forms of machineries as well apart from being used for transportations.

This post briefly discusses the evolution of wheels below:

1. The Ancient Wheels

The wheel was invented in 3500 BC and the first wheel was used in pottery. Although 300 years later they were used in Mesopotamian chariots, the main utility of wheels was still limited to irrigation, milling and pottery.

2. Wheels in Transportation

In the 1000 BC the wheel went through a minor upgrade with the invention of iron rims around them. It remained as it is for centuries after that without any further improvement until 1802 when the round wire tension spokes were invented.

3. The Era of Development Continues

Karl Benz invented the first automobile wheel in 1985 and in 1888 John Dunlop reinvented pneumatic tires. !926 and 1927 saw the invention of steel welded spoke wheels.

4. Modern Wheels

The modern automotive wheels are of two types, steel and alloy. These two types of wheels vary in characteristics in several ways.


This is just a brief outline. Have a look at the following infographic shared by Big Bang Wheels to find out more about the Evolution of Wheels.

history of the wheel infographic

David Waters have been involved with automobiles at a young age. He has since grown a passion for rims and wheels; specifically aftermarket styles. Learn more at 2crave.com


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