Here at Bambu Batu, the House of Bamboo, you might say we have a tradition of breaking with tradition. When they zig, we zag. When they talk about riding a bike to work instead of driving a car, we say, hey, how about riding a wooden bicycle to work?
The idea of a wooden bicycle is as old as the bicycle itself. But the wooden bikes available nowadays are nothing like the two-wheeled terrors our ancestors were cruising back in the early 1800s. Today you can find wooden bicycles made with master craftsmanship that also employ the technical sophistication of a modern mode of transport. In the following article we’ll look at a few of the options currently on the market.
Reclaimed wooden bikes
Bill Holloway and Mauro Hernandez of Masterworks Wood and Design in San Jose, CA are not only producers of beautiful works of art and utility, but responsible stewards of the environment as well. For an example of their commitment to sustainability and technique, look no further than their reclaimed wood bicycles.
Urban scraps to city cruisers
As with all of their projects, the materials are sourced from “urban” wood sources such as dismantled homes and buildings, scrap lumber, waste sites, and tree removal services. Seals and varnishes are VOC-free, and both animal and human friendly. Each of their six models of bicycle are made by hand from start to finish and are truly testimonials to the talent of these enormously talented individuals. The bikes start at $5,000, which covers the cost of building materials and labor. To visit their showroom, stop by Peninsula Building Materials in nearby Mountain View.
Sustainable wood on wheels
For a more lightweight ride, Renovo Bicycle company based out of Portland, Oregon creates custom frames from sustainable hardwoods and bamboo that are as strong and stiff as carbon. Sealed to withstand moisture and elemental damage with VOC- free epoxy and linear polyurethane, the bicycle is sleek and durable. Renovo demonstrates that wood can be a high-performance material, and its fatigue life rivals that of its metallic equivalents. Each bike is made entirely in their workshop with a combination of old-fashioned human effort and high-tech computer modeling. Built by airplane engineers, they will send you flying down the street and around mountain trails like a pro.
Return to the roots of bicycling with frames made of wood!
Bicycles and Bamboo
Wooden you know it? You’ve probably heard by now about the wooden bicycles made from our all-time favorite plant and renewable resource, bamboo. Go check out our in-depth article on Bamboo Bicycles to learn about all the different bamboo bikes on the market today, from bamboo beach cruisers to high-performance street bikes.
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