I like bikes, and I like things made of wood. And holy cow, I had no idea you could combine the two on this level… I’ve seen some nice bikes before, but this… This is a thing of beauty. A work of art.
This bike was produced by Renovo Hardwood Bicycles, where else, but in Portland, Oregon. “Wood is natures carbon fiber” they say. They hand pick hardwoods for their frames, and use a CNC machine for shaping & hollowing out the four pieces that comprise each main triangle, and bonded finger joints where the pieces intersect and the halves are joined in the middle.
They call the frames “heirloom quality”, and I’d have to agree. I don’t know how well they ride, but my guess is that they are as stiff yet supple as Renovo claims. And this is something you’d definitely want to bequeath to your kids, and they’d love to inherit.
I’d like to take a shot at building a wood frame bike like this, although I couldn’t match Renovo’s build quality. The finger joints would be the difficult thing to reproduce with the tools I have on hand, but it might be possible to use lap joints at the three main joints, with the wood forming gussets at those joints as well. Three layers of overlapping 5″ wide, 1″ thick planks in four sections to form the triangle might just work… Build a solid prototype from something soft like Douglas Fir to see how it works, then go to a hardwood with hollow tube centers… Even if it didn’t work as a bike, it’d make a great wall decoration. This could be fun!
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