Garelli came into the world of cycling in 1953 with the Mosquito 38A, a new 38.5 cc engine to mounted to common bicycles. A new model was built, called the Mosquito 38B with a capacity of 49 cc. in 1961 the Garelli is merged with the Agrati and produced a wide range of mopeds and light motorcycles up to 125 cc. Garelli Mosquito was an auxiliary engine that was applied to a common bicycle to transform it into an bike with pedal assisted power and was the most successful of this type throughout Europe.
Iniziati to produce in the first postwar from its location in Milan Garelli and designed by engineer Carlo Alberto Gilardi, distinguished for their compactness that made it an easy installation at the bottom of the cycle without interfering with the position of the pedals. Because of the considerable requests it became necessary to open a manufacturing branch in France.
Garelli between 1946 and the 1970's produced the following models:
- The 38-A of 1946 was the first in the series. It was a two-stroke cycle, roller transmission and engine capacity of 38.5 cc equipped with a carburetor, usually a Dell'Orto, capable of delivering power to 0.8 hp and a total weight of about 4 kg. Fuel was provided by a mixture of oil/gas at 6/7% rate in the tank for 2 liters and consumption was about 70 kilometers per liter. This model, in 1952 France, was known for its solid build quality. This was proven by running the engine continuously for 55 days and 55 nights at an average of 30 km/h. Garelli at that time announced that they had already had a record with over 400,000 identical Mosquito's in circulating.
- The 38-B of 1953 was an evolution of that first, while maintaining the same initials, had the engine capacity increased to 48 cc.
- The "Centrimatic", which followed the successful Mosquito in 1955, had a fundamental change: the adoption of a patented automatic transmission that further simplifying operation and succeeded to get the bicycle to reach the 45 km/h goal.
In the next two decades there were other small changes on the original model until the last versions that there were changed in the characteristic of the carburetor's.
The Mosquito was purely utilitarian and affordable for almost every budget since it was sold as a box assembly. The engine could be fixed to the frame with only a clamp and two bolts under the pedals, with the only hassle of having to abandon the carrier of his bike in order to accommodate the fuel tank. A roller was supported by the bicycle tire which would send it in motion.
Regarding the controls needed to accelerate, was a small lever similar to that of mechanical trigger mounted to the on the handlebar, push forward to accelerate and release to decelerate and finally there was a mechanical horn which did not need any power supply.
The auxiliary engine could be switched off and allow the bicycle to be peddled, but it was not easy to manage during stops and it was practically difficult to shutdown the engine and then attempt a subsequent restart.
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