Friday, 18 September 2009

Wooden bikes

I'm not actually convinced personally that wood is the best material for making a bicycle frame. However, who cares ? The results in this case are very beautiful indeed and that's certainly a good enough reason for this bike to exist.

Jan Gunneweg is a Dutch bicycle maker who makes wooden bikes. We saw them on display at the prologue of the Vuelta here in Assen, which is where the video above was made.

There's another video on youtube showing Jan racing and even swimming with his bike. The epoxy seals the wood pretty well, I should think, but I'm not so sure the metal bearings like it.


Duncan Watson said...

Have you seen the bikes made in Portland, OR by Renovo?

They have a lot of detail on why wood on their website and the bikes look wonderful. I am a recumbent rider myself so I haven't bought one of their bikes but I want to someday.

David Hembrow said...

Duncan, I've seen those too. A much bigger operation, and in another country.

Our local craftsman has been at it for several years and hasn't had nearly the publicity.

Wooden bikes are of course not a new thing. There are also lots of them in museums.

David Earl said...

Well, you know the one about the wooden car? Wooden wheels, wooden engine, wooden body. It wooden go.

James Graves said...

There's a bike with a bamboo frame displayed at the local bike shop where I live in Sebastopol, CA. Perhaps a better strength to weight ratio than wood?

David Hembrow said...

Yes, I've seen bamboo ones too. They've a few at the museum I posted a link to just above.

The biggest worry I'd have with bamboo is that if broken it has really sharp edges. In a crash these could be dangerous.