Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Bikes made out of Bamboo & Carbon Fiber

Calfee Design is working towards assisting entrepreneurs in the developing world to make their own bicycles out of locally sourced bamboo. The reasons to do this are so strong that it would be foolish not to try:

  1. Bicycles are in great demand as a major labor savings device. Transporting water, people, food and other items is six times more efficient.
  2. Bamboo bikes cost less than inferior imported steel bikes.
  3. Bamboo is plentiful and does not need to be imported as a raw material. Bamboo is easy to grow and can be cultivated in dry areas with minimal irrigation.
  4. Bamboo bikes require a significant amount of labor to produce, providing skilled employment and an apprenticeship model that helps youth find opportunity.
  5. Bamboo bicycle production is not easily done in large factories. This keeps large industrialized countries from getting into the business and competing on an unfair level.
  6. Making Bamboo bikes does not require electricity or a large investment in equipment.

1 comment:

  1. Very cool use of local resources!

    Do you have price break-down of the cost of a bamboo bike versus a relatively cheap import?

    Also--what is the source for the conventional bike parts--the wheels, fork, seat, petals?

    Thanks for sharing!


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