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  1. #1
    ukenut Haptown's Avatar
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    Wooden Handlebars

    Has anyone ever made their own set of handlebars out of wood? Or any other material?
    A few chords strummed on an ukulele, enough to please a few others beside yourself, does more good in this world than the combined efforts of all the financiers and politicians that ever lived. - Frank Littig

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    Senior Member FlatFender's Avatar
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    wood would scare me I think about falling breakin the handlebar, and getting impaled by a broken handlebar spear.

  3. #3
    MFA jjvw's Avatar
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    I agree that wooden bars sounds terrifying. I suppose in a more upright riding position it would be feasible, since there is less weight on the handlebars. Straight grained, split hickory comes to mind as a possibility. If one wants any kind of bends, the wood will need to be steamed since carving would result in weak spots. Wooden track drops are a terrible idea!

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    Every day a winding road spinnaker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Haptown
    Has anyone ever made their own set of handlebars out of wood?
    Why would you want to to that?


    Quote Originally Posted by Haptown
    HOr any other material?


    Other material? Yes steel. Works pretty well.

  5. #5
    o.O Seggybop's Avatar
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    I think I saw some wooden handlebars on fixed gear gallery. If you use a wood of sufficient quality, I think it would work pretty well. A good alternative to CF.
    mi yu mi yu

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    Opt-in Member GreenGrasshoppr's Avatar
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    rattan would not be a bad material...

  7. #7
    Conservative Hippie
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    I hadn't really thought about it, but any hardwood with a straight grain would be plenty strong for a flatbar. Stronger than any commercially made, hollow, aluminum, CF or steel handlebar with the same diameter. Certainly more impact resistant than CF or aluminum. The trade-off would be weight.

    Rattan would work and could be shaped into dropbars, but would be flexy. Which may not, of itself, be a necessarily bad thing, depending on personal tastes. However, rattan would tend to sag over time, especially if it got wet or in a humid climate.

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    Two H's!!! TWO!!!!! chephy's Avatar
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    Well, bamboo bikes do exist.

    But no, I never made my own handlebars. Don't have the tools or the skills.

  9. #9
    MFA jjvw's Avatar
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    Bamboo is technically a grass.

  10. #10
    Too Much Crazy
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    What about Epay?

  11. #11
    Conservative Hippie
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    As long as we're splitting hairs, rattan is about 600 types of palm that grow like a vine.

    I'm just full of meaningless trivia, or full of something anyway.

  12. #12
    Senior Member wahoonc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Seggybop
    I think I saw some wooden handlebars on fixed gear gallery. If you use a wood of sufficient quality, I think it would work pretty well. A good alternative to CF.
    And sustainable I have worked with wood a fair amount as a hobby and I am sure you could build a very nice set of bars and they would be durable. But they would need periodic maintenance...I have axes and shovels that are over 50 years old and have seen regular use and the handles are still in decent shape. I have had an alloy handle bar fail suddenly and I can't see how a wooden one would be any worse. Fortunately it failed while I was pulling up on it

    Aaron
    Webshots is bailing out, if you find any of my posts with corrupt picture files and want to see them corrected please let me know. :(

    ISO: A late 1980's Giant Iguana MTB frameset (or complete bike) 23" Red with yellow graphics.

    "Cycling should be a way of life, not a hobby.
    RIDE, YOU FOOL, RIDE!"
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    Aluminum: barely a hundred
    Which one would you rather have under your butt at 30mph?"
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  13. #13
    Stooge thebankman's Avatar
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    There was a bike on display at the Tour of California booths last week that had what looked like thick tree cuttings or antlers for aero bars but I couldn't get close enough to tell for sure.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Nermal's Avatar
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    Aircraft frames used to be made from wood. Sitka spruce really is a wood, and it is not a hardwood. Still, as CommuterRun says, there would be a weight penalty, and I can't imagine any advantage unless it were a matter of personal satisfaction.
    Some people are like a Slinky ... not really good for anything, but you still can't help but smile when you shove them down the stairs.

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    Conservative Hippie
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    Why stop at the handlebars?
    http://www.woodenbikes.com/
    http://www.alternative-energy-news.info/wood-bicycles/
    http://www.chariotaku.com/tim/commen...d=P361_0_1_0_C
    http://www.planenco.com.br/gota/indexe.htm

    How 'bout a wood frame with steel 'bars?
    http://www.woodworkforums.com/attach...chmentid=33328
    http://www.woodworkforums.com/attach...chmentid=33329

    Actually, awhile back I was thinking of building a bike with a plywood frame. Until I found out somebody else already did it.

  16. #16
    Banned
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    Hi All-

    They used to make tubular rims from a variety of hardwoods. Better get yourself a truing stand to deal with humidity changes, though! I'd only use them to be tricked-out for Sunday club rides. As far as handlebars...it would have to be a narrow, straight bar carved of very dense and sturdy wood.

    ~ Blue Jays ~

  17. #17
    Two H's!!! TWO!!!!! chephy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jjvw
    Bamboo is technically a grass.
    So there exist bikes made out of grass. Cool!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by FlatFender
    wood would scare me I think about falling breakin the handlebar, and getting impaled by a broken handlebar spear.
    What makes you think this is limited to handlebars made of wood?

  19. #19
    yeah soup rashfreedom's Avatar
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    There are a lot of wood bars out there as well as complete bikes. They are plenty safe and are easier on the hands because it dampens the road or trail. Here is a link that was posted in the alt bike section http://www.alternative-energy-news.info/wood-bicycles/

  20. #20
    jcm
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    Wood handle bars sound interesting. But just for comparisons, any discussion of wooden aircraft ribs, like boats, must be viewed with the realization that those structures were not self supporting. They were consolidated with lots of longitudinals. And, in some cases, plywood sheeting, which was the major stress absorber/disperser.

    I guess I could visualize a set of bars made from solid yew or laminated maple, like a decent English Longbow. Flexible enough not to break, and stiff enough to give decent handling, being only about 44 to 48cm long. Probably best to have the laminations running perpendicular to the shock coming up the steerer, like a bow being drawn.

  21. #21
    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

  22. #22
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    I wonder if (as a long-term project) you could grow some handlbars in the desired shape. Take a suitabel plant and train the branch using a wire wrap.

  23. #23
    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelW
    I wonder if (as a long-term project) you could grow some handlbars in the desired shape. Take a suitabel plant and train the branch using a wire wrap.

    You could, but it wouldn't be strong enough.
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

  24. #24
    Senior Member Allen's Avatar
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    The Sogreni Wooden Bicycle

  25. #25
    Senior Member Allen's Avatar
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    A little help for you C.E.
    Aircraft Spruce Co. They sell wood for wooden airplanes.
    And C.E. is right, many airplanes are wooden, it holds up well and has been used since Wilber and Orville.
    Jodels are a modern wood plane, and just one maker of many.

    Check out The EAA. They will walk you through how to build a plane, wood if you choose, in your basement.


    Jodel




    K-6 Sailplane

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