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Kevin's Bamboo Road Bicycle

Posted by James Marr on
Kevin's Bamboo Road Bicycle

Location: Rodmersham, Kent, UK

What made you decide to build a bamboo bike?

My father promised to build me a bike when I was eleven, fifty-three years later I discovered the means and opportunity.

Did you enjoy building the bicycle from scratch and would you recommend the experience?

Yes, absolutely. Everyone thinks they know how a bike works, but you don’t until you build the frame component from scratch and have to fit everything else to it and make them work. A thrilling and at times thought-provoking process.

What did you find most difficult about your bike build?

Other than making sure the bamboo tubes ARE cut to correct length, discovering that I had to find and fit something called a front derailleur hanger to make the chain wheel mechanism work. Not much guidance on that topic.

What was the easiest part of the build?

The wrap

What advice would you give to other bamboo bike builders and what would you improve if anything?

Do it somewhere with space to move around and make a bit of mess. Persevere, if you’ve no idea about frame geometry and if you think you want to fit a wide tyre, make sure you build gaps wide enough at the rear triangle. And buy a bike stand at the beginning. Invaluable for fitting, adjusting all the components.

How would you describe the ride of your finished bike?

Super. My son and daughter were surprised just how good, as they ride their bikes on/off-road much more regularly than I ever have.

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