Daredevil Motorized Roller Skates From the 1960s


The Motorized Roller Skate Company of Detroit started producing self-propelled skates in 1956. It was founded in 1955 by Antonio Pirrello, an inventive individual from Lincoln Park, Michigan.

h/t: vintag.es


Priced at $250, equivalent to a whopping $2300 in today’s currency, these skates were equipped with a 19-pound gasoline motor carried like a backpack. The motor propelled the right skate, while the left foot controlled steering. A hand-held clutch cable allowed for speed regulation. These skates were remarkably swift, reaching speeds of up to 40 miles per hour!


Antonio Pirrello and his motorized skates gained recognition and were featured in Life and Popular Mechanics magazines. They also appeared on television shows like “You Asked for It” and “The Today Show.”


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