Now our museum has its own "Bunny"

We are talking about the "Zayka-3m" bicycle, which is recently added to the exposition of the State Polytechnic Museum. It will complement the "Transport" section with its small collection of bicycles.

Bicycles of the "Zayka" series became the most popular children's bicycles in the former USSR. The "Zayka-3m" bicycle is one of the best models, with a perfectly thought-out design. Unlike previous models with direct brakeless drive, this bike already had a overrunning clutch  (ratchet). That is, it was possible to travel long distances, go on a run, relax. Only the front wheel is equipped with brakes. Brakes with clamping rubber insert, with a small number of parts, although of outdated type - but simple and reliable. But the most original improvement of this "Bunny" was a rubber buffer of a back half-frame. It was the first bicycle with a shock absorber in the USSR! Somewhat later, LMP began production of similar teenage bicycles "Tisa", also with a rubber shock absorber. The rubber shock absorber was fixed near the seat tube by a transverse axis with a lever that was locked by rotation. For the convenience of carrying the bike and during storage, the lever was turned and taken out, and the bike was folded along the axis next to the pedal carriage. Its length thus decreased from more than a meter to 60 cm.

The bicycle was equipped with a headlight and rear gauge, which were powered by salt elements located in the headlight. Thus, the bicycle resembled a miniature motorcycle. The bicycle from the exposition was close to the "Luxury" model, which had a seat back and a rear-view mirror. The side support wheels (included) were used to teach cycling, and then were removed after the child had mastered riding on two wheels. Exhibited bicycle is of good condition. Polyethylene stickers with the name and the factory emblem have been preserved. Chrome details without peeling of a covering, and scratches and chips of a paint covering only add "life" to an exhibit and testify to its working condition.

The bicycle was extremely popular. The plant did not keep up with demand. In 1979, a commemorative medal was minted in honour of the fact that the plant produced a million children's bicycles. For comparison, in the same year a millionth motorcycle left the gates of the Kyiv Motorcycle Plant. Quite often consumers took such bicycles at rental points, which was quite justified - children grew up quickly. The cost of a bicycle "Zayka-3m" was about 30 rubles. For comparison, the cheapest road bike for adults costed 56 rubles.

We hope that "Zayka-3m" will be interesting for museum visitors not only as a part of history, but also as a materialized childhood dream that has come true for some, and for some has remained a bright dream… Forever.

[The full version of material is in Ukrainian language]