One of the most commonly asked questions I get is “Is wood strong enough?” The answer, quite simply is yes. Wood has a great ride quality, has beauty but most importantly is incredibly tough.
When done properly, a wood bicycle will last a lifetime of riding and still look beautiful. By using strong woods like American white ash, which has traditionally been used in tools like axe handles, baseball bats, and ancient weaponry, you start with a material that takes a beating and says together. Perfect for the types of stresses it will encounter as a wood bike.
I also work to make my bikes even stronger. By laminating strips of wood to one another you get increased strength by removing any tendency for the wood to crack along a gain line. Adding to that I laminate in layers of Kevlar and carbon fiber in some of the high-stress areas to ensure that additional strength and tailor the ride quality. Using the best aerospace adhesives bonding wood to aircraft and marine standards ensures that the bikes are built to withstand the toughest conditions imaginable.
The bikes also endure the usage of real riding. The wood is protected with a marine varnish, like what is used on sailboats. This finish is totally waterproof, flexes to move whit the wood as it naturally expands and contracts and with a little soap and water cleans up to keep your bike show ready and beautiful.
The result is that these bikes can be ridden hard and will look great doing it. They’ve passed tests like endurance races like the Leadville 100 mountain bike race in Colorado and have delivered thousands of miles both on and off road with style and strength.
Some of the lab testing we’ve done for lateral frame rigidity.