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Bamboo bikes…Strong, Renewable, Recyclable and only $10,000.

How’s that for green chic.
Here is a story from Toronto’s The Star.com with a nice quote from Messenger legend and bike shop owner Nadir Olivet of Lacarrera-Cycles.com

article link
Riding a bike made of grass
June 24th, 2009
Catherine Porter
ENVIRONMENT REPORTER

It’s light, it sucks carbon out of the air and you could compost it. What more would you want from your bike?
Move over Prius, the bamboo bike is the next hot thing for environmentalists.
“Picture a steel factory in the Midwest U.S. Now picture a place where we source organically grown bamboo in the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico,” says Jacob Castillo, co-founder of Panda Bicycles, a Colorado-based start-up set to begin producing bamboo bikes this fall.
“We can actually recycle all the materials used and bamboo is a rapidly growing grass. There’s the carbon sequestering benefit as well.”
Bamboo has long been used for scaffolding in construction sites in Asia. It is known for its strength and flexibility. And it grows like crazy – more than one metre a day, under optimal conditions.
All those things make it a perfect material for bikes, says Marty Odlin, founder of The Bamboo Bike Studio in New York City.
“It’s very light and it absorbs all the vibrations of the road compared to an aluminum bike that is very clattery,” says Odlin whose two-day workshops on building bamboo bicycles have a “waiting list a mile long. There’s a lot of demand for this.”
It is considered as strong as light steel. But unlike steel, bamboo is renewable. And it is relatively cheap. Odlin collects his from the side of the highways around New York. He hardens the fibres with flame treatment, glues the tubes together, and binds each joint, wrapping them in epoxy-soaked hemp that hardens.
A team, including Odlin, is working to open a manufacturing plant in Ghana to produce Africa’s first locally made bicycles later this year. The sustainable development project, called The Bamboo Bike Project, aims to create cheap bikes to sell to locals and to create jobs.
“If you can make papier mâché, you can make a bamboo bike,” says Odlin, who made his first on a living room floor with a cardboard stand.
Sound too good to be true? There is a hitch. The first commercially available bamboo bikes recently went on sale at actor Colin Firth’s hip eco-store in London for thousands of dollars.
That’s because each one is handcrafted by Craig Calfee, a bicycle designer based in California, explains Nadir Olivet, owner of La Carrera Cycles on Harbord St. in Toronto.
Olivet sells the bikes for $10,000. To order one, he requires a down payment of $8,000. To date, he has sold two – one to a Hollywood actor, the other to a sheik from Dubai.
“It’s like owning a Bulgari (watch),” he says. “I think they are cool but I wouldn’t go spend $10,000 on one.”
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Actually you can build one right here in NYC for only $1000.00.

Check out this article from Planet Green
on the Bamboobikestudio in Redhook Brooklyn.
Picture 5

14 comments to Bamboo bikes…Strong, Renewable, Recyclable and only $10,000.

  • one day i will have on! the pro team for OrganicAthlete races on them. I’ not pro yet still a rookie but one day!

  • The price on these at the moment are insane. Once there is a better production line and they are easy to come by they should be priced cheaper than their steel comparisons.

  • Wow! the unique bike I’ve ever seen. Made from grass. How can you this..? (LOL) How I wish I have this bike soon…Keep it up..thanks for blogging. You can have more Bike’s info’s and style here.

  • [...] Bike Blog NYC » Bamboo bikes…Strong, Renewable, Recyclable and … [...]

  • Bill

    Bamboo bikes are really some of the coolest bikes around. I’m thinking about going to New York to build one at the studio, but Panda Bikes – http://www.ridepanda.com – also makes a sweet bamboo bike for only $850. I’ll probably get one of those instead of going all the way to NYC.

  • Grundle

    Amazing! Who would want to waste so much money when they are so easy to build? Just do it yourself for under $100. The “expensive” part would be peripherals — Gears, wheels, chain, handles, etc.

  • About 5 Month ago a friend of mine helped a elderly man clean out his packed garage. In the very back that had not been seen in over a dacade was a complete bambo bike The basket, back rack, frame, fenders and the seat is all made of bambo. I believe it to be a 10 speed. It rides great and the only wrong with it is the right finger gear changer is broken off. I should not be hard or expensive to fix. My ex friend decided he perfered my 850 Trex bike that looked new and was my favorite (I love to fix up and collect bycicles). He jumped town with my bike leaving me the bambo bike. I have it secure in a garage in Jax Bch, Fl. I want to know the value of it and if it is a caffee. It looks to be from the 60 or 70 era and I believe Caffe did not start making bikes till 1983. Any interested parties please contact me. I will try and get a picture to post. Hope to hear from you.

  • [...] Bamboo bikes…Strong, Renewable, Recyclable and only $10000. « Bike …“It’s very light and it absorbs all the vibrations of the road compared to an aluminum bike that is very clattery,” says Odlin whose two-day workshops on building bamboo bicycles have a “waiting list a mile long. … Read more [...]

  • [...] Masuelli Bamboo Bikes – Cyclelicious“It’s very light and it absorbs all the vibrations of the road compared to an aluminum bike that is very clattery,” says Odlin whose two-day workshops on building bamboo bicycles have a “waiting list a mile long. … Read more [...]

  • alex

    I heard Panda Bicycles out of Fort Collins will be selling there single speed/fixed gear for around a grand and will be ready by spring. I was recently in Fort Collins and saw one downtown hanging up at Coopersmiths brew pub, they are SWEET!!!

  • Its now 2010 and hopefully the latest Carrera Models will hit the racks sooner than they did in 2009!

  • Mike

    You can always make one yourself for 1/20th that price. Check out http://bamboobike.wordpress.com/ There is a ton of good info on what to do and where to get it.

  • How long though til the bamboo bike is cheaper than a PRIUS?