Alternative Alternative Transportation

16 year old Marco Facciola built a bicycle made entirely out of wood:

His inspiration:

This project came to mind as I was reflecting on the many stories my opa, Case Vandersluis, told me about his adventures in Holland during World War II. Opa was roughly the age I am now when he had to build wooden wheels for his bicycle, as rubber was scarce during the war.

The method behind his madness:

I was mostly concerned that the wooden chain would break. I researched the strength of different types of wood and built jigs to test the stresses that each of the chain’s components would undergo during use. First, I used my weight (150 lbs) to see if the wood could endure this amount of force. Then, my father would stand on the jig. I calculated that my dad’s weight would be twice the force each chain component would need to withstand. I made the specs high to ensure the chain and sprockets would work even if the wood had imperfections. During testing, I made adjustments to the chain’s components, and once I had it figured out, I realized that completing the project was within my grasp.

More images below the fold…

 
[chain]


[the ratcheting system]

 
[the ratcheting system and chain in action]


[close-up of back end]

Might this make for an excellent collaborative project between ASIC and Fine Arts students?

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terryman

Dave Semeniuk spends hours locked up in his office, thinking about the role the oceans play in controlling global climate, and unique ways of studying it. He'd also like to shamelessly plug his art practice: davidsemeniuk.com

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