So when is Renovo starting on a Classic Dutchie frame for you to complete with your Churchill parts?
And is it still possible to get cane rims?
Re: Renovo Dutchie
I’ve seen so many wooden rims hanging up in shops during my travels, that to be honest, I haven’t even looked closely to see what they’re made from. Perhaps not antique can rims, as I’m guessing you allude to right now.
They do a more relaxed bike too, with moustache handlebars. Have a quick gander: http://www.renovobikes.com/
I found the wheels for it. A single, aging Italian artisan following 200 years of family tradition manufacturing wooden rims on 120 year old machinery but with modern epoxy glues & sealants. Apparently his son is too busy with an auto repair business to take over wheel manufacturing when the venerable craftsman retires. Perhaps an opportunity for a keen apprentice.
He makes the moustache handlebars in wood too.
Elora! What we’re describing will hang in museums! But do you know what? I actually know people here in Australia with the skills to make such a frame, wheels, bars, and maybe some more bits as well. Let me make a few calls!
Cool and closer than India where there’s one with bamboo chain & cranks! OK, technically bamboo is grass not wood and the look is very agricultural.
Maybe the polyurethane & carbon Gates belt drive could be reproduced with renewable rubber & hemp.
To get away from the look of a farm implement it would be interesting to see what resulted if a block of hickory or ash was dropped into the CNC machine Shimano use to make their Dura Ace cranksets. You might need to give some thought to the stress vectors and laminate the block with grains run accordingly first.
I believe wooden rims are banned from competition because of their dramatic failure mode (I don’t think they necessarily fail more often than alternatives its just that the alternatives bend but remain whole while wood shatters dangerously into dangerous splinters. Wood rims can’t carry the high spoke tensions required for today’s highly dished wheels (necessary to accommodate 10 speed cassettes) either, but if one was willing to live with Rohloff or Alfine-11 hub gears instead it should be fine. Not much we can do about the failure mode though, except laminate fibreglass cloth onto it, which would leave the wood visible; or hemp cloth, which would hide it but replace it with an equally renewable looking alternative. (Don’t tell anyone about the petro-chemicals in the resin.) Actually, hemp cloth aero rims would look great on Renovo’s Triathlon/TT bike. I wonder if, after convincing Shimano to try a block of wood, Zipp could be convinced to try a hemp layup.
Oh wow, all this talk of hemp is giving me flashbacks to 1992. Or are you running a Dutch theme?
I can actually divulge a Renovo trade secret here, having been present as they destruction tested a frame with a square of carbon fiber cloth laminated around the head tube for reinforcement. It worked incredibly well, and was completely invisible, and simple. Laminate carbon fiber matting into all these pieces we’re talking about (rims, cranks, handlebars etc) and I’m sure they would be stronger and safer. Now guys I’m going to ask to look more closely at this, are two brothers with the last name of Wood.
If the flashbacks are troubling you, flax would work nearly as well.
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