I very nearly forgot to write my blog tonight as I was wrapped up in a very long report on heat treating bamboo. There are plenty of articles on how to do it but very little on why. There are also a number of ways to do heat treat and most of them aren’t particularly scientific. Wafting a blow torch at something until you think it is all right doesn’t really do it for me. It wasn’t until Linda asked if I had blogged that I realised how little time there is left for me to publish.
Unfortunately the report is very scientific and towards the bottom I am understanding every third word and I will have to research what half of what the report means. The idea of using bamboo for my next bike has been a consideration for a while, interspersed with building it from carbon fibre. However with my move towards sustainable and renewable materials for my products I think bamboo is more in keeping with this ethos. I already have a design that would lend itself to being built in bamboo. Lessons learned from building the wooden bike are certainly going to help on this project and materials won’t be overly expensive either. I would hope that this bike will have an actual day to day usefulness and reliability rather than a comedic value wooden bike possesses.
On the subject of Wooden bike, Connor and I spent some time getting the modifications required from the first test run completed, this included the chain run, the handlebars and the brake. We spent a couple of hours getting it something like and ventured out for the second test run. I took the helm first and took her round the block, we then had to complete more modifications to the chain run. Several aborted attempts to sort this issue out finally saw it cured with a large number of tiewraps and a totally new bracket fashioned in the Heath Robinson style. After the bike was deemed safe for use Connor tried to ride it. There were a number of failed starts but in a very similar vein to how I managed to learn to ride it, something just clicked and he was away. Once going he took some getting off the bike, the smile on his face shows just how much fun recumbents are. They are infectiously enjoyable and seriously comfortable. However the next will sport brakes that have more than a cosmetic value and I will use a jig to align everything as there is a slight alignment issue with the steerer tube which means it steers better to the left. The wooden bike was an experiment that has worked out brilliantly.
Tomorrow I am back on nights at work, this means I should get some work done in the morning on a garden plant stand that needed starting weeks ago. However how able I am to do anything after my shifts start will remain to be seen. My next blog will be an outside broadcast dependent on the nation’s railways behaving themselves.