Inventions That Never Sold Or Caught On

A list of inventions that never caught on. They surprised a generation, even though they never caught on. Some of the inventions eventually came around after it took more than 50 years.

Did you know there was a steam-powered lawn mower? Yup, a man named James Summer invented it as a more efficient way of cutting grass. Trouble was, the machines were very heavy.

A famous inventor, known for his many world-changing inventions, didn’t have a perfect track record. One of his biggest flops was his concept of concrete homes, complete with durable furnishings. A hard sell, the prefab houses never took off.

How about a shoe-fitting fluoroscope? This ill-fated contraption used X-ray technology to show how well a foot fit inside a shoe. It was a common feature in shoe stores until the cancerous effects of radiation became known.

With the driver sitting inside a giant wheel, this bizarre-looking vehicle seemed to defy physics. Unsurprisingly, the one-wheel motorcycle didn’t make it big since most people prefer the more stable two-wheel model. In fact, it came with a large steering column and seat.

Making its debut at a historic event, the Smell-O-Vision was a machine that allowed a movie theater audience to smell the scents suggested in the film. Though the machine was used only once in 1960, a modern variation will be used for the Spy Kids 4 movie. Perhaps this invention will catch on, after 50 years.

It’s a bird, a plane, no it’s the flying car! Several models of flying cars were produced throughout the last century, but not one has been embraced by the mass market. The Moulton Taylor Aerocar and this odd creation are two of the most notable.

By: Jennifer Hong
Published: Aug 7, 2021
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