Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Show off your E-bike creation here.
User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » Nov 16, 2015 4:39 pm

Have begun a project to build a bamboo-framed mid-tail bike with BBS02 750W and Nexus 8 IGH.

Wanted to build a bamboo frame for several years. Got the necessary bamboo for tubes back in 2013. It’s been air drying since then. My gut instinct is that bamboo has ample strength for a mid-tail design (stretched about 5 inches), but I'm less certain about how it might do in a long-tail design. So I’m taking a shot at building a bamboo mid-tail.

Found two steel frame salvage bikes – $20 each – as donor bikes for necessary frame bits.

I’ll document build process here. With luck I’ll end up with a ride-able bike that addresses design needs. Or the project simply may not work out but I’ll have learned something in the process. If the bike feels good I’ll ride it. If it feels like a deathtrap I’ll recycle the frame into garden stakes next spring :lol:



Step One. Selection of bamboo begins the curing process in 2013.
Bamboo Poles.jpg
Bamboo Poles.jpg (91.12 KiB) Viewed 3252 times
Step Two. Donor bike and dropouts held in place on temporary plywood building frame.
Donor Frame and Dropouts.jpg
Donor Frame and Dropouts.jpg (88.09 KiB) Viewed 3252 times
Closeups of the bottom bracket secured to frame and original + new dropouts...
Bottom Bracket Closeup.jpg
Bottom Bracket Closeup.jpg (82.65 KiB) Viewed 3252 times
Dropouts Closeup.jpg
Dropouts Closeup.jpg (90.3 KiB) Viewed 3252 times

Step 3. Donor bike with un-needed bits removed and recycled. Key bits remain in original spatial relationship on the building frame.
Frame Tubes Gone.jpg
Frame Tubes Gone.jpg (67.66 KiB) Viewed 3252 times
Step 4. Bamboo tubes tacked in place with West Marine epoxy. Starts to look like a bamboo bike...
Bamboo Frame Tacked.jpg
Bamboo Frame Tacked.jpg (69.63 KiB) Viewed 3252 times
Enough for now, more later.
Last edited by footloose on Mar 29, 2016 6:28 pm, edited 3 times in total.

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » Nov 16, 2015 4:45 pm

Project is coming along! Starting to believe this may turn into a bike someday soon.
Frame assembly went well. Bamboo / hemp / epoxy is pretty simple to work with.
Think that the joints are massively overbuilt, but better safe than "oops, the fork just fell off."
Did some destructive testing on a sample layup (not shown), couldn't break it short of sledge.
Rather than show entire process, here are snaps of evolution of one joint and a snap of full frame as it stands.
IMG_7033.jpg
IMG_7033.jpg (51.58 KiB) Viewed 3195 times
IMG_7046.jpg
IMG_7046.jpg (49.92 KiB) Viewed 3195 times
IMG_7055.jpg
IMG_7055.jpg (85.56 KiB) Viewed 3195 times
IMG_7051.jpg
Last edited by footloose on Jan 29, 2016 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » Jan 29, 2016 3:30 pm

"Finished" today. Realistically I guess they are never done... already planning couple tweaks. Pretty happy with result so far.
BambooBike.jpg

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » Mar 29, 2016 6:35 pm

Reserved for next set of tweaks...

User avatar
wineboyrider
100 MW
100 MW
Posts: 2966
Joined: Sep 30, 2009 9:08 am
Location: Tularosa, New Mexico
Contact:

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by wineboyrider » Mar 29, 2016 6:49 pm

.
ES IS SAVED! THANK YOU JUSTIN.

User avatar
spinningmagnets
100 GW
100 GW
Posts: 10920
Joined: Dec 21, 2007 10:27 pm
Location: Ft Riley, NE Kansas

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by spinningmagnets » Mar 29, 2016 8:13 pm

Well done, sir!

WoodlandHills
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 744
Joined: Nov 11, 2015 12:27 pm
Location: Templeton Gap, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by WoodlandHills » Mar 30, 2016 1:36 am

Very cool! What species of bamboo did you use, do you know? I have a bamboo hedge and I've saved a number of 12'+ poles that have dried nicely and are very strong. Having traveled in south east and west Asia since I was a teen I have some amazing things done with bamboo and twine. I wonder if I could harvest some more poles of the correct diameter in hopes of making a longtail cargo type bike next year using your method?

How does it feel as you ride it? Different to steel or alloy?

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » Mar 30, 2016 11:15 am

spinningmagnets wrote:Well done, sir!
Thank you! Pretty happy so far. Tried to keep it clean,
with minimal reliance on zip ties and velcro in final assembly.
Resulting bike looks a lot less bodged together than any of the
straightforward conversions I've done in past.

WoodlandHills wrote:Very cool! What species of bamboo did you use, do you know? I have a bamboo hedge and I've saved a number of 12'+ poles that have dried nicely and are very strong. Having traveled in south east and west Asia since I was a teen I have some amazing things done with bamboo and twine. I wonder if I could harvest some more poles of the correct diameter in hopes of making a longtail cargo type bike next year using your method?

How does it feel as you ride it? Different to steel or alloy?
Thanks! Wish I knew the bamboo species, but I don't. Only know that it grew in Alabama, but it looks heck of a lot like the generic bamboo I see a lot of growing in California. Have my eye on a bamboo grove in San Jose for materials for next project. :wink: My guess is that you could probably use the bamboo from your hedge, which would be pretty cool... a bike you actually grew.
Haven't pushed the bike hard yet, still feeling it out, but the ride is terrific. Think that is mainly due to the longer wheelbase of bike (extended rear triangle by 5 inches), partially due to vibration damping of bamboo tubes.

puregsr
100 W
100 W
Posts: 107
Joined: Mar 04, 2014 2:35 am
Location: Seattle, WA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by puregsr » Mar 30, 2016 11:31 am

I am envious.
Now I wonder what happened to that paper bicycle?

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » Mar 30, 2016 12:01 pm

puregsr wrote:I am envious.
Now I wonder what happened to that paper bicycle?
Build one! If I did it, you can. Really wasn't that hard.
Only stationary tools I used were a band saw and drillpress, and
that was just for convenience because I had them. Basic hand tools
would have worked for everything, just taken a little bit longer.

Paper bike... guess if bamboo works, paper could work too.
Marine epoxy is tough stuff, think you could fabricate tubes
of rolled up newspaper that would be plenty strong.
Wonder where a person could get their hands on a pile of old
colored Sunday funny papers? That would be a fun bike.

User avatar
macribs
1 GW
1 GW
Posts: 3347
Joined: Jul 22, 2014 5:59 pm

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by macribs » May 22, 2016 6:57 pm

Cool build, a bamboo e-bike. Well that was a first for me. Cool project.
Growing a bike in the back yard :)

Btw did you put down you costs in a spread sheet? 2 old scrapped bikes, last years bamboo from garden + motor/battery.
Should be doable for even people with severe financial stress. And beat commuting by train or buss. And if you get tired of it, you could always start a new trade as a flute salesman.

LewTwo
100 kW
100 kW
Posts: 1057
Joined: Apr 08, 2014 4:46 pm
Location: Houston, Texas
Contact:

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by LewTwo » May 23, 2016 9:28 am

Very nice work. By any chance did you ever weigh the finished frame ?
The more I learn the more obvious the immensity of my ignorance becomes.
Weight Wennie E-Bike https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... 3#p1173723
Shaft Drive Grocery Getter https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... =6&t=90718
...and thanks to Justin!

WoodlandHills
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 744
Joined: Nov 11, 2015 12:27 pm
Location: Templeton Gap, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by WoodlandHills » May 23, 2016 11:32 am

macribs wrote:Cool build, a bamboo e-bike. Well that was a first for me. Cool project.
Growing a bike in the back yard :)

Btw did you put down you costs in a spread sheet? 2 old scrapped bikes, last years bamboo from garden + motor/battery.
Should be doable for even people with severe financial stress. And beat commuting by train or buss. And if you get tired of it, you could always start a new trade as a flute salesman.
I was thinking you could always make bongs to sell at the farmers market!

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » May 23, 2016 12:48 pm

LewTwo wrote:Very nice work. By any chance did you ever weigh the finished frame ?
Subjectively, the finished frame felt pretty much the same weight as a standard steel frame... maybe very slightly lighter.

I chose not to get an objective measurement of exact weight.
Why?
If the frame was significantly lighter than steel frame, I'd always be worrying about that I under-built it and that it was sure to fall apart beneath me as a result.
If it was significantly heavier, I'd always be convinced that I over-built it and was carrying stupid excess weight for no reason.
So having objective knowledge re weight felt like a no-win.

Rode the bike for a few miles yesterday. It is terrific! And we both got home intact :lol:

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » May 23, 2016 12:58 pm

WoodlandHills wrote:
macribs wrote:Cool build, a bamboo e-bike. Well that was a first for me. Cool project.
Growing a bike in the back yard :)

Btw did you put down you costs in a spread sheet? 2 old scrapped bikes, last years bamboo from garden + motor/battery.
Should be doable for even people with severe financial stress. And beat commuting by train or buss. And if you get tired of it, you could always start a new trade as a flute salesman.
I was thinking you could always make bongs to sell at the farmers market!
Woodlandhills, Macribs --
Have been wondering what to do with the pile of bamboo cutoffs... thanks for suggestions!
Looking at the bike... seems like the seat tube could be adapted as a rolling bong.
Existing battery of 18650 cells could power on demand ignition just like a vaporiser.
Carburetion should work well with a little cable activated sliding trap door instead of a finger...
And at a speed of say 20mph airflow would provide a natural ramjet effect.
Not suggesting this is in any way a good idea.
But it is an intriguing one 8)

WoodlandHills
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 744
Joined: Nov 11, 2015 12:27 pm
Location: Templeton Gap, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by WoodlandHills » May 23, 2016 2:12 pm

footloose wrote:
WoodlandHills wrote:
macribs wrote:Cool build, a bamboo e-bike. Well that was a first for me. Cool project.
Growing a bike in the back yard :)

Btw did you put down you costs in a spread sheet? 2 old scrapped bikes, last years bamboo from garden + motor/battery.
Should be doable for even people with severe financial stress. And beat commuting by train or buss. And if you get tired of it, you could always start a new trade as a flute salesman.
I was thinking you could always make bongs to sell at the farmers market!
Woodlandhills, Macribs --
Have been wondering what to do with the pile of bamboo cutoffs... thanks for suggestions!
Looking at the bike... seems like the seat tube could be adapted as a rolling bong.
Existing battery of 18650 cells could power on demand ignition just like a vaporiser.
Carburetion should work well with a little cable activated sliding trap door instead of a finger...
And at a speed of say 20mph airflow would provide a natural ramjet effect.
Not suggesting this is in any way a good idea.
But it is an intriguing one 8)
This could make full face helmets a lot more popular, just run a tube to a nasal cannula.......

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » May 23, 2016 3:42 pm

macribs wrote: Btw did you put down you costs in a spread sheet? 2 old scrapped bikes, last years bamboo from garden + motor/battery.
Should be doable for even people with severe financial stress.
I did not. I keep a rough mental track for my own knowledge but never document exactly what gets spent on building bikes. Sort of better not to know when the topic comes up a dinner.

This one wasn't a budget breaker. I already had most of the pieces, recycled them from other builds (BBS02, battery pack, internal hub, seat, etc).
Actual out-of-pocket costs were pretty much for the scrap frames (not much), some hemp fiber (even less), bamboo tubes (shipping cost more than bamboo), a small can of Rustoleum to paint the front fork (couple bucks), some new cables and brake pads (pocket money). Plus the West Marine epoxy, hardener, and filler which all cost *way* more than I expected per ounce but is great stuff and I didn't need much.

LewTwo
100 kW
100 kW
Posts: 1057
Joined: Apr 08, 2014 4:46 pm
Location: Houston, Texas
Contact:

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by LewTwo » May 23, 2016 4:16 pm

footloose wrote:... bamboo tubes (shipping cost more than bamboo)....
I spent some time looking for sources this morning. I found a couple of place that sold kits but no one selling just the bamboo. Is your source still active?
The more I learn the more obvious the immensity of my ignorance becomes.
Weight Wennie E-Bike https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... 3#p1173723
Shaft Drive Grocery Getter https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... =6&t=90718
...and thanks to Justin!

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » May 23, 2016 5:17 pm

LewTwo wrote:
footloose wrote:... bamboo tubes (shipping cost more than bamboo)....
I spent some time looking for sources this morning. I found a couple of place that sold kits but no one selling just the bamboo. Is your source still active?
Don't think so. I bought the poles on eBay few years ago from a lady in Alabama. Can't find her now.
But looks like there are other sources for raw bamboo still on ebay. Search I used:
http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R4 ... s&_sacat=0

Bought the hemp on eBay from these guys: Bamboobikesupplies (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Hemp-Bast-Fiber ... 1963251055)
Looks like they also sell full kits, but that gets pricy and kind of less fun.

User avatar
spinningmagnets
100 GW
100 GW
Posts: 10920
Joined: Dec 21, 2007 10:27 pm
Location: Ft Riley, NE Kansas

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by spinningmagnets » May 23, 2016 5:46 pm

At first glance, I'm sure a lot of readers might wonder why this would be worth the effort. however, I am certain this is much easier and more cost-effective compared to buying a welder, which opens up a whole new world to garage custom bike builders. The frames where this might provide a huge savings on are: longtail cargobikes, recumbents, semi-recumbents, and any custom designs from your own imagination.

I had a rough time fitting a BBSHD inside the triangle of my most recent bike. If I had been using a custom bamboo frame, I could have designed around that from the beginning.

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » May 23, 2016 6:40 pm

spinningmagnets wrote:At first glance, I'm sure a lot of readers might wonder why this would be worth the effort. however, I am certain this is much easier and more cost-effective compared to buying a welder, which opens up a whole new world to garage custom bike builders. The frames where this might provide a huge savings on are: longtail cargobikes, recumbents, semi-recumbents, and any custom designs from your own imagination.

I had a rough time fitting a BBSHD inside the triangle of my most recent bike. If I had been using a custom bamboo frame, I could have designed around that from the beginning.
Ron -- Thank you, really well said. -- Steve

User avatar
macribs
1 GW
1 GW
Posts: 3347
Joined: Jul 22, 2014 5:59 pm

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by macribs » May 23, 2016 9:39 pm

At first glance, I'm sure a lot of readers might wonder why this would be worth the effort.
I think anything that might make more people turn to bike for more of their transportation needs is a good thing. And if the material itself is green, well that's two birds with one stone. Talk about renewable. I hear bamboo shoots up like weed in your kitchen garden.

WoodlandHills
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 744
Joined: Nov 11, 2015 12:27 pm
Location: Templeton Gap, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by WoodlandHills » May 23, 2016 11:49 pm

Not all bamboos are created equal. The ornamental varieties may not all have the required characteristics you need once dried and cured. I cut some 12' poles from a 20'+ hedge on my property and after two years they had lost about 1/4 of their diameter. If I had epoxied them up a year earlier they might have failed at the joint.

LewTwo
100 kW
100 kW
Posts: 1057
Joined: Apr 08, 2014 4:46 pm
Location: Houston, Texas
Contact:

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by LewTwo » May 24, 2016 7:50 am

"POLES" :idea: :idea: :idea: well fudge! I think I used every other conceivable term. THANK THEE! :)
footloose wrote:Bought the hemp on eBay from these guys: Bamboobikesupplies (http://www.ebay.com/itm/Hemp-Bast-Fiber ... 1963251055)
Looks like they also sell full kits, but that gets pricy and kind of less fun.
I saw their adds and they have a bunch of videos on YouTube. Also they are using double walled tubes (one piece of bamboo inserted into another). I would imagine that makes their frames a lot stronger but heavier and stiffer as well... a bit self defeating.

I am old and slow. My projects tend to take months and sometimes longer to get completed (plus I have a number of other odds and ends to finish). If I get some poles now and place them in the attic then they will probably be well aged by the time I get 'round to them.
The more I learn the more obvious the immensity of my ignorance becomes.
Weight Wennie E-Bike https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... 3#p1173723
Shaft Drive Grocery Getter https://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewt ... =6&t=90718
...and thanks to Justin!

User avatar
footloose
10 kW
10 kW
Posts: 586
Joined: Mar 29, 2013 2:59 pm
Location: San Mateo, CA

Re: Bamboo / BBS02 / Nexus IGH

Post by footloose » May 24, 2016 11:50 am

Woodlandhills, LewTwo --
Agreed, bamboo is tough / strong / light / cheap / renewable -- all good.
Also biological hence variable and prone to dimensional changes as it ages.
For me personally, the aging process has resulted in my getting both shorter and bigger in circumference over time.
For the bamboo, I noticed that length did not change noticeably as it aged but the circumference did shrink.

I wasn't in a rush so let the bamboo cure for lengthy period before I started building.
Say a year of air drying in garage, followed by a session with propane torch to
heat cure the suface and catalyze (?) the surface sugars (smelled great, like caramel),
followed by another year+ of air drying before I started actual build.

Believe the whole curing process could have been completed in say 6 months and
the bamboo ready to work at that time. At least, I didn't observe any dimensional
or weight changes in the bamboo poles after about the first 6 months.

I've heard that cutting poles to rough length then oven-curing them might be
a reasonable short cut, but didn't try that so can't speak to it.

Post Reply