News and Events

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Saturday, June 22, 2013

Wooden Bike Mk11 Part13 / Russian Velomobile book


A week or so ago I received a Russian Book called "velomobiles".  There are lots of illustrations in the book and lots of text, mostly completely incomprehensible.  But I like it, and have bought a German copy which should be slightly more comprehensible.  Will report later when it arrives.

On the bike front I bought and fitted a new quick release headstem.  Only part of the stem was usable and the rest I made myself by hacking apart an existing stem and a whole bike frame.  The new stem is good and works well with the chopper style bars I have.  It allows the handlebars to be released without tools in order to make the bike more "2 dimensional" for fitting inside a car or on public transport.

Today I was out and around riding the bike and I feel that the wooden construction thing breaks down a few barriers.  People are prepared to stop and talk about it.  One guy said he'd never seen a wooden bike before (must've lived under a mushroom or something) and so was perfectly prepared to stare at mine.  People are prepared to accept amateurish bits on a wooden bike and won't so readily dismiss it as a recumbent.  So maybe my next bike will be another wooden one.  I have been thinking through the design of a hollowed out-beam bike which could be made quite quickly using NC routed parts.  Some new parts I have arriving include a fork for Front wheel drive and A-Headstem and with thise I should be able to make a ripper wooden bike.  The other way forward (making these bikes) I've thought about is to make a custom aluminium extrusion but this would involve some tooling costs and a minimum production run of a hundred metres of extrusion. Ok, all for now.

Part of the 1986 Russian Book "Velomobiles"

and another part, "Cycling Utopia" drawing.

Quick Release Stem

Source of tube used for making headstem

Near our local recycling centre in Roseneath Street, my bike with an artwork dedicated to signs
The new stem fitted to the bike

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Wooden Bike Mark 2 Part 12

Cutting corflute for the tailbox in the kitchen

This is how it looked after the corflute was fitted, and after shopping at The Hive shopping centre.  Having the holes for the corflute predrilled in the seat makes it all a bit neater.

This is the shopping I got in the wooden bike.

Just adding a few photos here.  Over 2 nights I worked on the bike in the kitchen to make a corflute tailbox.  It's worked out well, bigger and neater than the one on the bike I normally ride. 

Yesterday I added a lid to the tailbox and today I rode to work (about 70k round trip) on the wooden bike.  And it goes good although there are a few interesting squeaks and rattles to work on.  Weight is about 15kg.  In the shed I have another seat assembly and plan to use it to make a wooden tailbox from 2 or 3mm plywood.

All for now.


Steve Nurse

I have

Friday, June 7, 2013

Wooden Bike Mk2 Part 11

At home on Sunday afternoon, Christine relaxing with some neighbours

Our son Ewan came over on Saturday and did some blockies on the wooden bike

In the lounge room Friday night, this is where I fixed the chain and reattached the steerer.  If its cold and bucketing rain, this is the only place for it.

The rear swingarm, its been varnished and "decorated" to some extent.  The black holes cover the access holes for the wheel and swingarm nuts.

I joined in Robert's ride at St. Kilda.

Well the photos tell most of the story again.  After varnishing the bike, the last step to getting it on the road was the transmission.  By now I had a new cluster, new chain, mountain-drive and short home-modified cranks, which thankfully all work together with none of the clanking and clunking present last time I went on a ride.

Overnight on Friday it bucketed rain in Melbourne and on slightly soggy Saturday (as well as some local shopping on the wooden bike, my son Ewan came around and tried it.  Thumbs up!

On Sunday I pootled off to Robert W's monthly come'n'try bike ride.  People film me from their cars, people smile and wave.  I am almost moved to poetry about the joys of riding a wooden recumbent and how, for enjoyment in a vehicle, this is it and how, in my opinion, you can stick your Lamborghinis and Porsches and keep your Maserati's and Ferraris.  But I digress.

The bike paths were still wet and muddy from Friday's rain and I cleaned the bike a bit when I got home.  Christine spent the afternoon playing cards with the kids from down the road and I even took them for a rickshaw blocky late in the day.

Here is a link which leads to more about wooden bikes than you can possibly poke a stick at, or even 2 sticks.