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Bike Built Out Of Wood Might Set Speed Record

SplinterBike

Here is something that you do not hear every day, a bike made entirely out of wood, and it is aiming for a 31-mph speed record. The SplinterBike does not have any single piece of plastic, rubber or metal – it is all wood. The bike’s axles are made out of ekki, while the frame, wheels and cogs are birch. Ironwood was used for the bearings, while the handlebars and pedals come from a broom handle.

The bike was developed by Michael Thompson and James Tully and they’ve got their inspiration after watching the Tour of Britain pass Thompson’s front garden. Tully bet him 1 pound he could not make a wooden bike, and as you can see, Tully lost.

Probably the most interesting thing about the SplinterBike is its drivetrain. It does not have the traditional chain that you can find on all bikes; it was replaced with a pair of 128-tooth cogs that link the pedals to the bike’s rear wheel. This isn’t the first bike in the world made entirely out of wood, but there are big chances that it is the fastest and these two guys want to find out if their SplinterBike can reach 31 mph.

Obviously, at the moment there is no existing record, so they had to call in someone to record the bike’s speed. They paid 7,500 pounds to Speed Record Club to come and find out how fast the SplinterBike really is. The team believes that thanks to the bike’s 4:1 gear ratio, it should reach a top speed of 31 mph. Don’t get your hopes up because this is only a theoretical estimation as the bike hasn’t been ridden yet. Why? Because Michael and James do not have access to a venue that has a smooth-enough surface for those wooden wheels.

[youtube width="470" height="344"]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3onk49Qce3Y[/youtube]

Source: SplinterBike via Wired