Tonight was the Bamboo Bicycle Club evening talk at the Velo Cafe. I’m not sure what your first thoughts are when you hear bamboo bike, however mine were skeptical at best. I’m not really sure what I was expecting or what I would take away from tonight. And you know what, I came away really inspired, impressed and seriously considering building my own frame out of bamboo. Read more to find out what you can build and how you can do it yourself in the shed.
For a mere £289, you can get a home build kit that includes everything you need (including a jig) to build your own bike. What’s more if you chat to them first, your kit can be customised for potentially the same cost. So if you want to build a 26″ mtb, full on road bike or a fat bike, you can do it.
Don’t think you can do it without supervision? Well then you can join one of their course for just under £500 where you get the supervision, use of all the tools you need and even help building the bike afterwards if you bring the parts. This takes only a few days.
Many of us have dreamed of building our frames, however the cost and opportunities to do so are a serious limiting factor. I can’t think of a cheaper way to do it and still have a very useable product. Yes it won’t be polished or cutting edge, but actually why wouldn’t it be? If you put the time, care and effort into it, the results can be rather impressive.
longevity of the frame seems to be pretty good, apparently there have been no catastrophic failures in over 350 frames. Sure there has been some imperfections, this is a natural product after all, but the natural properties of Bamboo with its long fibres and various wall thicknesses, profiles and renowned toughness seems to make a very decent material. After all, bamboo is widely used as scaffolding in many countries.
So what would you build? A fixie? Fat bike? Tandem? Di2 racer? Well they have all been done so let’s us know in the comments what you would build. I’m still considering a 29er+ singlespeed.