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Semester Bicycles- Hextube bamboo composite frames made in the rural South

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Posted in Commuter, Concept, Utility.

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8 Responses

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  1. Impossibly Stupid says

    Holy crap, this is actually a well-executed concept with reasonable prices! That $1300 full build sure looks sweet. Who knew bamboo fenders would be so pretty?

  2. Matt says

    But why bamboo? Surely you could just make it out of carbon? It’d be a whole lot lighter.

    Seems perverse to make claims about bamboo being sustainable and then use carbon fibre, epoxy, powder coat and other polluting, unsustainable products to make it. I’ve got some vegan shoes that are made from dead cows but the laces are hemp…

    Still, can’t knock these guys for providing work for communities

    • art says

      Because making the tube out of all carbon requires a bunch of layers, which gets expensive fast. This composite looks like a really good balance between the cost of bamboo and the consistency of an engineered material.

      The only thing that concerns me is that they say the hex tubes are incredibly strong, but don’t provide any mechanical or environmental test data. Delamination is going to be a serious issue with moisture and temperature variation. The fact that they say the use of dissimilar materials “dampens” road vibrations doesn’t lend confidence that they have any real data.

  3. MJ says

    I like the idea. In terms of materials use, I’m not sure a bamboo bike actually out performs a cycle made from re-purposed or recycled steel or aluminum. Unless of course there is a compelling argument about carbon sequestering in the growth and harvesting of the bamboo.


    • Paolo says

      carbon is already difficult to recycle, is a mix of different components, the idea to mix also with bamboo is not so good, i can see here not a eco bike but a not reusable mold for the carbon.
      I don’t like any kind of wood bike, the longevity of a bike some time is more than 10 years, the industrial production of a metal frame take a lot of energy, but at the end you have an object (that without accident) could life forever or be recycled 100%.The value of this project probably is in the production process more than in the product. the same concept could be more useful for furniture design.

Continuing the Discussion

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  2. Hextube Bamboo Frames | Urban Velo linked to this post on August 27, 2013

    […] From Bicycle Design: […]

  3. Cyclelicious » Santa Clara green lanes, Melbourne commuter challenge, and the lingering scent of bike saddles linked to this post on August 28, 2013

    […] Fascinating project: Hextube bamboo composite from the rural south. […]

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